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The elements of fire, air, earth, and water serve as the basic building blocks of all matter in the physical universe. Shamanic culture have long sought to live in harmony with, or assert dominion over, the elements. To do so, they call upon the primordial forces of Spirit and Decay. Those who seek to bring balance to the elements rely on Spirit (sometimes referred to as the "fifth element" by shaman, or "chi" by monks). This life-giving force interconnects and binds all things in existence as one, sacrificing its life. Sacrificial magic was considered the greatest violation of life and the energies of Life, most commonly known as nature magic, promote growth and renewal in all things. Death, in the form of necromantic magic, acts as a counterbalance to Life. It is an unavoidable force that breeds despair in mortal hearts and pushes everything toward a state of entropic decay and eventual oblivion.[1] Decay is the tool of the shaman seeking to subjugate and weaponize the elements themselves.[2]

Arcane

The arcane is a fundamental power which "mana" is just a measure of.[3] In keeping with an author's theory that the arcane is an element unto itself, the author humbly offers the fact that there is at least one documented occasion wherein the Focusing Iris was utilized to enslave, direct, and control various elemental beings.[4]

Fel

Fel is the primal force of chaos and can pool into a green goop when it's in physical form.[5] It is a substance that can be animated and, according to the Blizzard Historian Sean Copeland, is entropic as in "destroys life...".[6] It seems like Copeland doesn't understand that destruction can be defined as the process of destroying structures, breaking them down into the parts that they're constructed of. Fel can't be "entropic" as in destroys life because life would be a construct, which is not a true living thing (like a toaster). Micky Neilson22 year veteran of Blizzard Entertainmentstates that it seems like just a change of energy[7] and fel (according to how the game designer Dave Kosak would described it) is chaotic energy that life is converted into.[8]

Denizens of the Cosmos

Elemental Spirits

The elemental spirits are primitive and chaotic beings of fire, earth, air, or water. They were some of the first sentient creatures to inhabit the nascent worlds of the universe. The elemental spirits appear in an almost infinite variety of shape and sizes. Each of these creatures has a distinct personality and temperament, traits that are heavily influenced by a spirit's elemental nature. The presence of the fifth elementSpiritalso affects the disposition of these elemental beings. A world with an overabundance of Spirit may give rise to native elementals who are passive and lack physicality. Conversely, a world with too little Spirit may birth elementals who are highly aggressive and incredibly destructive.[9]

Sludge Beasts

These strange creatures share an elemental heritage, but have been corrupted by the powers of chaos. Now they exist as tortured masses of semi-sentient goo. No one knows what their motivations are or if there is any specific ecology behind their existence.[10]

Titans

Composed of the primordial matter from which the universe was born, the titans are colossal godlike beings who were uniquely susceptible to fel magic.[11]

Elemental Duality

Many shamanic cultures have discovered that the elements can influence a variety of emotional states. For this reason, mortals associate the elements with different feelings, both positive and negative.[12]

Fire

Positive Trait: Passion

Negative Trait: Fury

Air

Positive Trait: Cunning

Negative Trait: Madness

Earth

Positive Trait: Stability

Negative Trait: Stubbornness

Water

Positive Trait: Tranquility

Negative Trait: Indecisiveness

Spirit

Positive Trait: Bravery

Negative Trait: Naivete

Decay

Positive Trait: Efficiency

Negative Trait: Ruthlessness

Professions of the Cosmos

Conjurer

Conjurers are seers of mystery, holders of secrets and dwellers in dream. These practitioners of the Arcane Arts have learned through researching the ancient tomes to bend the forces of nature to do their will. They can make the energies of nature strike down opponents, summon forth great creatures or command the elements. They are a secretive sect, and will only gather and train in their own specially prepared mystic towers.[13] Conjurers maintain a close relationship with the elements about them.[14]

Mage

Students gifted with a keen intellect and unwavering discipline may walk the path of the mage. The arcane magic available to magi is both great and dangerous, and thus is revealed only to the most devoted practitioners. Magiks involving the cardinal elements of the universe are favorites of the Mages.[15]

Priest

Priests are devoted to the spiritual, and express their unwavering faith by serving the people. For millennia they have left behind the confines of their temples and the comfort of their shrines so they can support their allies in war-torn lands. In the midst of terrible conflict, no hero questions the value of the priestly orders.[16]

Shaman

For millennia, since the primitive tribal cultures of Azeroth and Draenor, the natural elements of the physical universe have been celebrated, feared, and even worshipped. Mystics sought communion with the earth, air, fire, and water, and learned to tap into their raw power. In time, these spiritual guides came to understand that nature’s elemental forces aren’t wholly benevolent, but have, in fact, been locked in an unending conflict of chaos and primal fury that once consumed the physical realm. So began the calling of the Shaman, to bring balance to these volatile energies, leveraging their intensity to mend wounds . . . or inflict them.[17]

References

  1. World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 16-17 on iBooks
  2. World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 17-18 on iBooks
  3. Dave Kosak on Twitter
  4. Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War pg. 375 on iBooks
  5. Dave Kosak on Twitter
  6. World of Warcraft > Forums > Story Forum > Fel isn't Arcane
  7. Micky Neilson Twitter
  8. Dave Kosak on Twitter
  9. World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 27 on iBooks
  10. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Game Manual - Sludge Beasts
  11. World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 25 on iBooks
  12. World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 19-20 on iBooks
  13. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual - Conjurer
  14. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual - Elemental Blast
  15. Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual - Fireball
  16. World of Warcraft > Game Guide > Classes > Priest
  17. World of Warcraft > Legion Class Preview Series: Shaman

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