Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a wide variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be looking at some prominent historic figures in Hunter lore.
For Hunters looking to get into role playing, a good place to start is to look at the Hunters that came before you to get a feel for common themes upon which you can base your character concept. There are many prominent Hunters in Blizzard lore that spans multiple Warcraft titles, both for the Horde and the Alliance, which you can look to for inspiration. Today, I'd like to spend some time getting to know some of the great Hunters of Azeroth.
A half-ogre, half-orc member of the Mok'Nathal clan, Rexxar is fierce in combat with the aid of his loyal bear, Misha. Before the release of The Burning Crusade, Rexxar could be found wandering from the Charred Vale in the Stonetalon Mountains, through Desolace, and on to the Twin Colossals in Ferals. These days he calls Thunderlord Stronghold in the Blade's Edge Mountains home, protecting the settlement from outside threats. To truly get a feel for Rexxar's personality, there is one quote in particular that I think illustrates what's really in his heart:
"I have watched the other races... seen their squabbling, their ruthlessness. Their wars do nothing but scar the land, and drive the wild things into extinction."
Rexxar is no stranger to combat. His restless nature is what initially drove him from his peaceful clan to join in the fighting during the Second War alongside Grom Hellscream and the Warsong clan. However, Rexxar is not ignorant of the effects of war on the world around him and the damage the constant fighting does to the lands and creatures he loves.
Shandris' story, like that of many of the night elves' most prominent figures, stretches far back into Azeroth's history. A loyal friend and supporter of Tyrande Whisperwind, the High Priestess of Elune and leader of the night elf government, Shandris is the General of the Sentinel Army and calls Feathermoon Stronghold in Feralas home. One of the few survivors of a Burning Legion attack on her home village of Ara-Hinam during the War of the Ancients, Shandris was introduced to combat at an early age. Following Tyrande, she watched in secret (Tyrande forbid Shandris from participating) as the Sisters of Elune engaged in battle to defend their homelands against the advances of the Legion.
Not content to remain inactive as those she cared about fought, Shandris grabbed her bow and joined the fray along side the Sisters under the command of Jarod Shadowsong, putting her lethal bow to efficient use. During the Sundering, Shandris retreated alongside her comrades to Mount Hyjal where she remained until the Orc Horde attacked the forest. Following Grom's slaughter of the demigod Cenarius, Shandris accompanied her Sentinels, the Shadowleaves, deep into Ashenvale to warn Tyrande of their approach.
Both in word and deed, Shandris has proved time and again that she is both loyal friend and fierce warrior, putting her bow to devastating use to protect her both her homeland and those she cares about.
For players of the Horde in particular, the figure of the former Ranger-General of Silvermoon is a familiar one; the Banshee Queen of the Forsaken can be found deep in the Undercity. Sylvanas' story is one of tragedy and betrayal. Her current status as the founder of the Dark Rangers was forced upon her after her death and subsequent resurrection at the hands of none other than Arthas Menethil, who hoped to bend her to the will of the Lich King and use her as a tool to conquer the lands of the high elves. Upon discovering that she could no longer exercise her will over the natural world, Sylvanas warped her woodland knowledge to suit the dark powers that were becoming increasingly natural to her.
Her cunning and ferocity in battle are matched only by her hatred of her betrayer, Arthas. Sylvanas now embraces her current state, harnessing it to suit her goal of restoring her people's lost glory and freedom.
Nathanos had the interesting distinction of having been the only Human Hunter, until the Scourge abomination, Ramstein the Gorger, killed him during an attack. Trained by Sylvanas and the high elves to be a master in battle, Nathanos Blightcaller's loyalty stretched beyond the grave and he now fights as an undead dark ranger in service of the Banshee Queen. In life, Nathanos served the Alliance loyally with numerous victories over the course of a decade until his life was cut short as he attempted to defend his home from the Scourge. Currently residing in Marris Stead in the Eastern Plaguelands along side his two Blighthound pets, Nathanos now bears the title: Champion of the Forsaken.
These are just a small sampling of the Hunters of Azerothian lore. If you're looking for further inspiration, Vereesa and Alleria Windrunner (the sisters of Sylvanas) are also interesting characters, and let's not forget the most famous Hunter of all: Hemet Nesingwary himself. (Just don't tell D.E.H.T.A.!)
A special thank you to Tharion Greyseer of LoreCrafted for pointing me in the right direction to find information on all of these great characters in the Warcraft Universe!