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orionx103

For God's sake, why Elves?!

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orionx103    138
Okay, I can understand the need to have multiple races in a story. When it comes to fantasy and games, multiple races provide a little variety and make things more interesting, or are meant to. We've been using multiple races since the 1950's, at least. Back then they were using Elves and Goblins and Orcs and Dwarves. They were NEW then. It was okay. But now, sheesh. Fifty years have passed and we're still using the same old races. There's a lot less variety in our American-made RPG's because we just use the same old formula OVER and OVER and OVER. The EGOD thing has been driven into the ground and I'm frankly surprised people are still trying to use it. It should be dead by now. We're using the same prototypes: Tall Magical Archer, Short Blacksmith Axman, et cetera. Why don't we change it, even in the simplest manner? AND FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, STOP USING ELVES. </end rant>

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Sneftel    1788
Seriously. Tolkien's Celtic/Norse thing worked fine for Tolkien, but that's not the only possible conception of "fantasy". I think that world designers these days lack either the willpower to defy the cliches of the genre, or the competence to draw from primary mythological sources like Tolkien did.

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silverphyre673    454
I assume you mean the standard "High Fantasy" versions of these races. Orcs, Dwarves, Goblins, Gnomes, Elves, and other bread-and-butter fantasy races have been in fairy tales for thousands of years. I agree, though, that we need a bit of fresh blood in the genre. However, the Chr'raskkrl, lobster-rhino-giraffe-people of the sea, is pushing it. I think what really needs to be reinvented is how we use them; right now, very often, each race is stereotyped to an extreme. I cannot relate to an entire race of magicians/archers/smiths/whatever. For me, the concept that an entire race of beings have the same interests is worn out. We don't need new races, but we do need new, deep, cultures.

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orionx103    138
Quote:
Original post by Sneftel
I think that world designers these days lack either the willpower to defy the cliches of the genre, or the competence to draw from primary mythological sources like Tolkien did.


I agree, and I think those who have that willpower will go further than those who won't.

Even if you change it up in the slightest, that's so much better. Make your two non-human races short magical people and weaponsmithing tall people. Name them something other than "Elves" and "Dwarves." Try looking into mythology. Japanese, Indian, Persian, Greco-Roman, Etruscan, Egyptian, Africa, Mayan, Aztec, Russian, whatever. Anything that doesn't have a God damn Elf, Orc, Goblin, or Dwarf.

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Sneftel    1788
Quote:
Original post by silverphyre673
However, the Chr'raskkrl, lobster-rhino-giraffe-people of the sea, is pushing it.

Oh, well goodness, we certainly don't want to push it.

Yes, elves and goblins have been around for awhile. But then, so have ifrits, and shedu (shedus?), and kappas. And even if they hadn't been, someone could invent them tomorrow. There's nothing to be gained, and much to be squandered, by sticking to the same races as everyone else (even with depth added).

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Trapper Zoid    1370
I still have a soft spot for elves, myself; I was planning on putting them in one of my game worlds (although technically they were more Fey, based on the Seelie and Unseelie Courts; I prefer my faerie folk to be the kind you'd prefer to avoid as they tend to stitch you right up [smile]). But I do understand what you mean; the Tolkein thing has been done to death. Having elves and dwarves and orcs together, with the same roles as in Tolkein, over and over again is a bit like a broken record.

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orionx103    138
Quote:
Original post by Sneftel
Yes, elves and goblins have been around for awhile. But then, so have ifrits, and shedu (shedus?), and kappas. And even if they hadn't been, someone could invent them tomorrow. There's nothing to be gained, and much to be squandered, by sticking to the same races as everyone else (even with depth added).


Ifrits are used in like, one series, and that's because it's a series. How many people could tell you that shedim were originally mythical beasts that demonized into goat demons by Christians, or that a Kappa is a water spirit in the form of a green monkey in a turtle shell? Exactly.

Everyone knows what an elf is, or what a dwarf is. Give them something they don't know and that should prove more appealing.

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_goat    804
I have to say, and this is a very small post, that my favourite type of "race", which is highly underused, is the Djinns.

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orionx103    138
The Jinn (singular Jinni) are interesting, in so much as there are five separate types of them. There's the Jann, Jinn, Ifrit/Efreet, Marid, and Shaitan. Of them all, the Shaitan are supposed to be inherently evil, if I recall correctly.

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PaulCesar    524
You know for a bunch of game developers noone seems to hit on the main point, which is echoed not only in the game development world, but in phychology (yes you heard me)

there is a rhyme and reason for the reuse of the middle earths races and sterotypes, and the reason is the same thing you are discriminating against. That is, they already have something to build on, the charactors already have history, and already have similarity in the eyes of 90% of the market. There is a phychological complex associated with this behavior. This is good for both the gameplay aspects , and for the marketing of the game idea itself.

Yes, lets get inventive here, lets not leverage any preexisting symbolism. Lets remove the english language and revert to a new and foreign type language which is only refered to via a language dictionary included as an instruction manual.

Let me just go ahead and get to my point here. You need to deal with 2 seperate things here to create a sellable fantasy setting. You need your fantasy, and you need your immersion. These are, in reality, a contradicting set of traits. When you read hear or see something that just doesent make sense in your brain, you go into nonsense mode and immersion is lost. So then how do you build a world thats fun (ie: not the real world) that is also immersive? Build on something that people already know, or that they will make some assumptions based on.

Anyways, im drunk, goodnight.

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Spoonbender    1258
Quote:
Original post by silverphyre673
I assume you mean the standard "High Fantasy" versions of these races. Orcs, Dwarves, Goblins, Gnomes, Elves, and other bread-and-butter fantasy races have been in fairy tales for thousands of years.

In a way... Then again, in a way they haven't. Fairytale elves are *way* different. We're talking about little forest spirits, basically, or more recently people wrapping presents for Santa. Fairytale elves are not l33t archers who hate orcs with a passion, and go around being arrogant towards humans. That's fantasy elves, and they're Tolkien's responsibility.
Same goes for most of the others. I believe Tolkien pretty much invented orcs, and dwarves are, well, just short people. Again, Tolkien is the one who twisted them into this *one* single static mold.

Quote:
We don't need new races, but we do need new, deep, cultures.

We also need new races. [wink]
Either that, or go back to having humans only. Even that would be refreshing...

Quote:

Yes, lets get inventive here, lets not leverage any preexisting symbolism. Lets remove the english language and revert to a new and foreign type language which is only refered to via a language dictionary included as an instruction manual.

Er, I don't think anyone suggested that. As Sneftel said, there are literally hundreds of other *existing* fairytale species to build on. There are literally hundreds of real-world cultures, and literally hundreds of mythologies to build on. And yet, everyone and their uncle chooses to build on Tolkien.

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You need your fantasy, and you need your immersion. These are, in reality, a contradicting set of traits

Not really. Things can make sense without being ripped from the real world. Immersion isn't lost just because you have a game with, say, giant lobsters waving swords around. As long as they act as you'd expect giant sword-waving lobster men to act, immersion isn't really threatened. As long as the world is somewhat consistent, people can suspend disbelief and pretend it's real.
It's only when the world starts breaking its own rules that immersion starts to get into trouble.

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sirGustav    588
What's wrong with EGOD?

There are atleast two orc's that I can think of. The warcraft orc and the tolkien orc. They are IMHO totally different. The tolkien orc is more like an beast than a human, and the warcraft one is pretty stupid and violent(and not to mention green). In LOTR the orc's obey the evil sauron and in warcraft the orcs are a part of different clans.

About the goblins I cant't recall many games that contain them(although I don't play alot of fantasy games). Slaying goblins in rune was fun though.
Added later: I rcalled that goblins were in both tolkien and in warcraft. Again they differenced alot from each other(as the orcs did).

I can't recall many games with dwarfes. They were (almost) extinct in morrowind and the ones in rune were pretty boring. However having dwarfes (or similar creatures) in a fantasy game allows you to add diversity to a level with metal and alot of mashines.

In a text-fantasy game I made years ago I've included some of theese characters, but not as playable characters. To tell you the reason why I need to include a little about the story: It is basicly an evil force has come to the world and taken controll of most of it's inhabitants. When your family was killed you decided it is time for revenge. Simply speaking all characters that you meet is evil and wants to kill you.
For the 3d (total) remake I plan to keep the enemies, simply because: I need a ranged unit(elves), a close combat unit(orc), heavy close combat unit(dwarf) and some random easy slayable enemies(goblins). On top of that there will be other enemies as well(zombies, ogrees, wampires, werewolves, minotaurus, humans, dragons, wolfmen, wizards, insects, demons, spiders, giants, imps, plants etc). Yes it will take some time to implement :)

The thing is I really don't think you are against EGOD. I think you are against the standard EGOD. Each EGOD in every game are the same. Rouhly the same appearance, stats, sounds and skills over and over again. Meeting and EGOD in the 20th game isn't as exciting as it was in the 1rst.
Another completely different reason why EGOD still exist is that the players assume since it is a fantasy game it must contain EGOD.

I don't think a game will be better if we remove EGOD. If you want you can call the orcs Klingons and the dwarfs Malons(sp?) if that makes you feel better. (The elves roughly translates to vulcans and magicians translates to Q)

Anyway my cents.

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mbruenjes    138
It´s not hard to change the standard races like elves, dwarfs and so on into a modern version. You just reduce each race to it´s key properties and transmit them to modern races.

Instead of using a Gandalf-like Person as a sorcerer you can use a Harry Potter-like or Simon The Sorcerer-like (somebody knows him??).
The same for each other race.

Oh, Final Fantasy X is a good example.

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Sneftel    1788
Quote:
Original post by orionx103
Ifrits are used in like, one series, and that's because it's a series. How many people could tell you that shedim were originally mythical beasts that demonized into goat demons by Christians, or that a Kappa is a water spirit in the form of a green monkey in a turtle shell? Exactly.

I meant around forever in mythology, not around forever in Dragonlance novels. In any case, I think we're saying the same thing.

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Spoonbender    1258
Quote:
Original post by sirGustav
There are atleast two orc's that I can think of. The warcraft orc and the tolkien orc. They are IMHO totally different. The tolkien orc is more like an beast than a human, and the warcraft one is pretty stupid and violent(and not to mention green). In LOTR the orc's obey the evil sauron and in warcraft the orcs are a part of different clans.

Who originally obeyed the evil demons and their evil human masters as I remember. What's the big difference? [wink]
The WC orcs are just part of a longer storyline.
In Tolkien they didn't really have much time to show their personality, did they? It was just "hobbit finds ring, goes home, other hobits finds ring and everyone gets into a big battle, while he drops the ring into a volcano".
I mean, nothing really happened to the orcs as a race during that storyline.

Warcraft is practically all about how the orcs evolve and adapt.

But getting back to your point, yes, there are quite a few differences. So why the %¤"! did they have to call them orcs and instantly inherit those 40 years of clichés? Why did they have to go "We actually have enough ideas here to make soemthing interesting. But no, I think we'll just toss it into a corner and nick stuff from good ole Tolkien instead"? The thing is that even when they're portrayed differently (I actually think the WC orcs are cool, precisely because they're a bit unusual, and don't just steal everything mindlessly from other Fantasy works)

Quote:

About the goblins I cant't recall many games that contain them(although I don't play alot of fantasy games). Slaying goblins in rune was fun though.
Added later: I rcalled that goblins were in both tolkien and in warcraft. Again they differenced alot from each other(as the orcs did).

I can't recall many games with dwarfes. They were (almost) extinct in morrowind and the ones in rune were pretty boring. However having dwarfes (or similar creatures) in a fantasy game allows you to add diversity to a level with metal and alot of mashines.

So your idea of "diversity" is "let's steal some more ideas from the same source we got the rest of the game from". Funny, my idea of diversity would be something to do with thinking up different stuff, or at least, nicking ideas from different sources.

Quote:

For the 3d (total) remake I plan to keep the enemies, simply because: I need a ranged unit(elves), a close combat unit(orc), heavy close combat unit(dwarf) and some random easy slayable enemies(goblins).

See, that's where it becomes a horrible overused cliche.
Getting back to your Warcraft example, Blizzard decided to use orcs because "Hey, they're cool, and we've got some ideas for making them stand out", and the same goes for the other races really (Dwarves and gnomes and goblins aren't usually as hi-tech as they are in WC, and (almost) tossing out elves in favor of night elves is an interesting twist too).

But picking those races simply because of their most overused, clichéd properties is exactly the reason most fantasy settings suck so badly.
There's a big difference between "I need a cliche to fill out this gameplay hole", and "I have enough ideas to make something interesting, but for convenience, I'll adapt a standard race/name".

I can live with the standard races if they're at least implemented in the same way as Tolkien (or Blizzard) did. He didn't go "Hmm, I need someone to shoot arrows at people and argue with the dwarf", and then go to look such a race up in his books.
Instead, he started with the idea of fairytale elves, and then used his imagination to come up with an idea of how such a culture could work in his world. Blizzard's saving grace is that they did basically the same thing. They (probably) read LoTR, and then sat down and tried to imagine how orcs would work in the universe they were designing.

Quote:
The thing is I really don't think you are against EGOD. I think you are against the standard EGOD. Each EGOD in every game are the same. Rouhly the same appearance, stats, sounds and skills over and over again.

Which is why you're implementing them in their most cliche'd forms in your game? [wink]

Quote:

I don't think a game will be better if we remove EGOD. If you want you can call the orcs Klingons and the dwarfs Malons(sp?) if that makes you feel better. (The elves roughly translates to vulcans and magicians translates to Q)

I guess that's another part of it. Once you start "translating" those races, you're going too far. That means you're reducing them from being a distinct (if overused) race, to being a set of skills and traits that can be applied to anyone anywhere.

"Elf" shouldn't equal "archer". Elf should be the name of a race that tends to appears a lot in fantasy games, and has a few, well, racial distinctions (looks pretty much like humans, but has pointy ears and are more graceful, and are connected to trees somehow). That describes a race (however vaguely), while "archer" just describes what the player wants to use them for.
Same goes for orcs. Making an orc a "melee unit" means it's not a race, it's a skill. I don't mind orcs in the sense of "big brutish and aggressive green people", because again, that means they're a distinct race/culture.

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orionx103    138
I'd like to add something I just thought of.

An elf is an elf is an elf. You can give them different names or slightly different characteristics, but they're always going to be the same if they're just "elves." You can make them different, though, by making them entirely different. Elves are magical beings in general, okay. By making them drow, you make them magical beings of a darker sort. (I'd like to add that I don't endorse you using drow either.) If you make them lightning elves, you make them magical with a lightning attunement, I think the word is. That's enough of a distinction to be different.

And what would be wrong with separating the Elves into two races? If you made the female Elves Nymphs and the male Elves Boreans, that'd at least be something new, or newer. (Use something other than "Nymphs," at least.)

Do you know that, in Greek mythology, there were a race of female weaponsmiths called Dactyls? How 'bout replaying Dwarves with Dactyls. Again, it's different enough to be something newer.

Furthermore, in Greek mythology, there weren't just Nymphs of water or earth, but Nymphs of thunderstorms and fire as well.

Food for thought, so think about it.

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Trapper Zoid    1370
Quote:
Original post by orionx103
An elf is an elf is an elf.

Not really. Elves have been around a lot longer than Tolkien. In the mythology I've read there's some blurring between elves, pixies and fairies, but there's a lot of different personalities you can go on.

To take reasonably well-known example, you could base your elves along the lines of the Fairies in Shakespeare's "Midsummer-Night's Dream". It's still a bit like Tolkien of course, because the mythology is based on the same roots, but in this case the elves are more masters of enchantment (and beings you don't particularly want to meet, unless you want to look like an ass [grin]).

Or there's the elves in "The Elves and the Shoemaker" (although you might prefer to classify those guys as gnomes).

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orionx103    138
Quote:
Original post by Trapper Zoid
Quote:
Original post by orionx103
An elf is an elf is an elf.

Not really. Elves have been around a lot longer than Tolkien. In the mythology I've read there's some blurring between elves, pixies and fairies, but there's a lot of different personalities you can go on.

To take reasonably well-known example, you could base your elves along the lines of the Fairies in Shakespeare's "Midsummer-Night's Dream". It's still a bit like Tolkien of course, because the mythology is based on the same roots, but in this case the elves are more masters of enchantment (and beings you don't particularly want to meet, unless you want to look like an ass [grin]).

Or there's the elves in "The Elves and the Shoemaker" (although you might prefer to classify those guys as gnomes).


I disagree to your disagreement. I agree that Elves have been around longer than Tolkein, but not in the Tolkein prototype/format. The idea that Elves and Fairies have the same mythical background is completely wrong. Elves were originally of Norse origin. There were Light Elves and Dark Elves. Light Elves live in Alfheim, while the Dark Elves ("svartalfar," or "dvergar," the original dwarves) lived in Svartalfheim or Nidavellir.

Elves later became a synonym for fairy, but that's like the ancients calling a whale a fish. Non-Norse elves, aside from the Tolkein adaptation, had became things like brownies and spriggans.

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Trapper Zoid    1370
Quote:
Original post by orionx103
I disagree to your disagreement. I agree that Elves have been around longer than Tolkein, but not in the Tolkein prototype/format. The idea that Elves and Fairies have the same mythical background is completely wrong. Elves were originally of Norse origin. There were Light Elves and Dark Elves. Light Elves live in Alfheim, while the Dark Elves ("svartalfar," or "dvergar," the original dwarves) lived in Svartalfheim or Nidavellir.

Elves later became a synonym for fairy, but that's like the ancients calling a whale a fish. Non-Norse elves, aside from the Tolkein adaptation, had became things like brownies and spriggans.

Well, I was really just comparing the elves from Tolkien to the fairy-folk from British folklore. I can see some parallels between Galadriel and Titania. I'd always thought the Tolkien elves were based on the ones I'd read in English and Scottish legends. The translations I've read of Norse myths always described them as dwarves (which is the source I thought Tolkien had taken his dwarfs from).

Suffice to say, there's more than one direction you can take the elves of old; it doesn't have to be "Tolkien++".


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Wombah    183
I think one of the major problems with using tolkiens races, or some similar version of them, comes from not making the race diverse enough. It's like Star Trek. When you have fifty different races, you don't go into detail to describe each race. Instead each race becomes a totally homogenized population. E.g. introducing an elf that does not particularly like trees would do wonders for diversifying elves. As elves are used now, mostly, you say that someone is an elf, and automatically assume that all the traits of all other elves are true for that character (good archer, magician, tree hugger, pointy ears etc.).

Anyone care to explain 'EGOD' to me?

[Edited by - Wombah on October 23, 2005 2:36:09 PM]

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sirGustav    588
Quote:
Original post by Spoonbender
Quote:
Original post by sirGustav
The thing is I really don't think you are against EGOD. I think you are against the standard EGOD. Each EGOD in every game are the same. Rouhly the same appearance, stats, sounds and skills over and over again.

Which is why you're implementing them in their most cliche'd forms in your game? [wink]


That particiular game will not be the standard EGOD RPG game. More like a Rune-like world with a Oni/Re4/Guildwars inspired fighting. The enemies may be (and probably will be) Tolkien inspired, and it is probably because the fighting-felling should be the same as the uru-khai with aragon in the end of the lotr1.
One thing to note is that it will probably go under several versions before I even get to start developing on this game(got 1-2 other ones before this one :) )

Quote:
Making an orc a "melee unit" means it's not a race, it's a skill.

Isn't that what warcraft did? Beeing an orc meant that your melee unit was a orc. Your heavy unit was a ogree and you had your goblins as "explosives". There was also some wraith/necromancer unit.
(I count the "ranged unit" as melee unit since they threw their close combat weapons(axes), and in my game(above) all melee-weapons and shields will be throwable :) )

Quote:
"Elf" shouldn't equal "archer". Elf should be the name of a race that tends to appears a lot in fantasy games, and has a few, well, racial distinctions (looks pretty much like humans, but has pointy ears and are more graceful, and are connected to trees somehow). That describes a race (however vaguely), while "archer" just describes what the player wants to use them for.
Same goes for orcs. Making an orc a "melee unit" means it's not a race, it's a skill. I don't mind orcs in the sense of "big brutish and aggressive green people", because again, that means they're a distinct race/culture.


Now that you mention it,
A few different human/elf/orc/dwarf enemies would force different-looking levels but still have the same basic enemies(close combat, .

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SunTzu    286
Quote:
Give them something they don't know and that should prove more appealing.


Or confusing. I for one (and I realise this is not a statistically valid survey) do not wish to spend time learning what everything is when I play a game. There may be some excuse for this if my in-game avatar is also new to the world, but if they've been living there for years, they - and therefore I - should know something of the background already.

The easiest way to do that is to use a cliche. I see something tall, thin, with pointy ears and carrying a bow - ah, that's an Elf, he will probably be friendly (or neutral at worst) and may even help me in my quest. Oh no, look behind him, he's about to be attacked by the big green thing - it's an Orc, I must help the Elf!

Or alternatively: I see something with six limbs and the face of a rabbit. Erm... WTF? It seems to be about to be attacked by something with red fur and horns. I'm sure I remember reading something about that in the city library, but did it say it was a GOOD CREATURE or an EVIL MONSTER? Oh bugger it, I'll kill them both and be done with it...

Alright, so that's an extreme case, and people might argue that their suggested creation isn't something deliberately obscure, but simply uses a different source of inspiriation to EGOD. Fair enough... but just what the heck IS a jinn, a dactyl, a duergar or even a kobold? Is it any more meaningful as an in-game entity than the six-legged rabbit-headed Qxxxvzzergalxxzq creature from Snarfblar Forest just because it already existed in some culture? I think not.

People play football or golf sims. They don't play korfball or woodball sims, though both are real sports. It's just that (with apologies to korfball and woodball players) football and golf are more widely recognised.

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5MinuteGaming    274
I think that most of us would agree that when you really get to the point we aren't concerned with the overuse of certain fantasy creatures such as Elves. But we are more concerned about the inconsitency of all the different ways in which an Elf is portrayed.

Tolkien elves if you understand and have actually read his books, have a significant amount of history behind the race most importantly their own language. A full language speaks a lot of the depth of a culture because the words that are within a language have origins in the cultures history.

But it wasn't the depth of these creatures alone that sparks people interest and imagination nor show why people use elves in game stories over and over again. The reason I think that elves are so popular is because of the idea that originated in Tolkien's mind and translated to his books. Elves may have an orign in mythology whether it be Norse or otherwise, that did not spark the vast uses of elves in fantasy adventures and Board games and such. It was the way Tolkien portrayed the elves that captured peoples imaginations and the history that he put to them that made them to be noble and mystical and majestic.

The unrest that you all seem to be experiencing is in the implementation and spawns of this specific Tolkien genre of fiction. Writers and game developers have been for years attempting to originalize Elves to their own purposes by changing the history but still referencing Tolkien in some way. The only effective way to use Elves in a fantasy adventure is either to base your writing in the land of Middle Earth where Tolkien's history, language, and culture of its races is preserved or to define with enough originality your own vision of the elves.

Why so many games, stories, have failed to use Elves effectively is probably because they do not adequately change the race and culture too much of what an elf is, relies on Tolkien's vision. Additionally many developers have only come in contact with elves through games that use them or perhaps roleplaying games both computer and pen & paper where they create their own vision to be later used in the creation of another game.

IMHO it is the way something is used that determines it's clicheness not merely the referencing to another source. With WC the original games using the Humans vs Orcs theme stemmed from LOTR and has since been around enough and known by enough people in this thread to be considered different.

You can see that an effective Writer is able to eliminate the Clicheness by adding his/her own vision of what a race of people are not only by imagining them differently but by efficiently explaining it. You see this in the world that Harry Potter lives in. The cliche Witches, Warlocks, and Wizards are not your stereotypical, Brothers Grim, fairy taled creatures. They are a vision of the author and the effectiveness with which they are portrayed shows their uniqueness and destroys the cliche elements that are used.

In The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis writes in a similar symbolic fashion to Tolkien. But you don't see a Warshwiggle running around in games. Though you do see something like fawns and centaurs. But it is mostly because of the amount of imagination that C.S Lewis's writing was able to provoke. If you can get your reader or Player to *cough* immerse themselves within your world the more effectively you can do so then the less cliche your work will be recognized as.

The basic idea of Elves is genuinely attractive. A race of wiser beings living long lives especially skillful with all senses. Slender folk in touch with nature, magical and mysterious. If you are to use Elves either you conform completely to Tolkien's original idea or you risk it all and redefine all their characteristics. So why elves, well just Read Tolkien and then tell me you hate elves.

I definitely agree that the Tolkien fantasy adventure type series and races should be tossed in favor of a type of race that fits in your unique world. If there are only two feuding gods in your world who created five races. One each to be in their image and the others created to be lesser servants to those created in their image. You should choose each races traits to correspond to the future events that you plan on happening. For instance you would not want to call any of the races Elves because this is not Middle Earth nor does it have anything to do with Norse mythology unless you wanted to symbolize a part of norse mythology or philosophies from the mythology in your story. Ok I've been going on long enough. I'll stop!

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