Goblin Paladins? Fan Designed Paladin Skins and Lore for Non-Paladin Races
Much of the talk around Patch 9.1.5 has concerned...well, all the things, but there has been much interest in the new customizations for a few races that are in need of more options. Fans have been contributing their own ideas, and today we are spotlighting a collaboration between Keyboardturn, an artist, and TheLostCodex, a lore Youtuber, who have put a fun twist on their ideas.
Shadowlands introduced a ton of new racial customization, but what if that same concept could be applied to our classes?
Their concepts include class skins and new class/race combinations, something many players have been enthusiastic for. They shared their ideas for Paladins on
The goal with these class skins would be to provide specific race-class combos a way to feel unique to their class, while still fitting within the lore. This could also allow for new race-class combos to be playable, while expanding some of the older, untouched class-lore for others!
Sunwalkers: Tauren and Highmountain Tauren Paladins
Connection and discussion with their shu'halo brethren lead to the discussion of An'she and to establish teachings of the Sunwalkers to their united Highmountain Tauren allies.
The Sunwalkers were the first 'radical idea' for the Paladin class, expanding the lore beyond 'Knight wielding Holy power' (even the Blood Elves gave off evil-vibes of that concept in early BC) so in my opinion, the Sunwalker's would be a top candidate for a custom Class skin.
The idea here is that the Sunwalker Class Skin could apply to Tauren/Highmountain Paladins, Priests and Balance Druids. Their spells would take on a more raw, fiery appearance and their spell icons would slightly alter to reflect something more fitting to a devotee of An'she.
My idea (not shown) was that casting 'Avenging Wrath' (called Blaze of An'she) wouldn't spark big angel wings behind the character but rather a glowing, fiery totemic backpiece, encompassing the Sunwalker in a blaze of holy-fire.
Nightblades and Moonblades: Night Elf Paladins
Night Elves. Worshippers of elune and inspired by the Night Warrior, these champions of the Moon herald a new age of justice for the Kaldorei.
Perhaps one of the most highly requested unavailable Paladin races, the idea of a Night Elf Paladin pulling their strength directly from Elune is something we've seen in WoW a few times before (notably, Legion).
The idea here was to provide them with both a 'standard Elune devotee' class skin with a secondary option that leaned more heavily into the Night Warrior themed aesthetic that we see Tyrande use.
Valewalkers and Crane Guards: Pandaren Paladins
Skilled templars of combat, the Valewalkers defend their homeland of Pandaria with their fierce magics to preserve the balance and rid the Sha of Pandaria once and for all.
Craneguards, devoted champions of Chi-Ji, seek to bring hope to the war-torn lands of Azeroth.
In the wake of the Vale's regrowth and the expulsion of the Black Empire in BFA, the August Celestials have taken up a new mantle within their order to protect and defend their land using the magic of the Vale.
In the South of Pandaria, the Order of the Crane expanded their temple's teachings with 'Crane Guards', an armored Monk who utilizes the teachings and magic of Chi-ji, the Red Crane.
The idea here is the Vale Walker would essentially utilize the Holy Light as any Paladin would, but the Crane Guard use a modified spell FX kit with more red and orange themed abilities themed around the Red Crane.
These visuals, combined with the martial art style combat animations would allow for a very unique and new-age style of Paladin. This specific spell-kit could also be applied to a variety of Pandaren classes like Priest, Mage and even Monk.
Lightblades and Shadow Knights: Forsaken Paladins
The Forsaken, shattered by a lack of leadership, began to discover new paths. An attempted second Council arose, with Calia Menethil and Alonsus Faol to research the Light, while the Cult of Forgotten Shadows tests new concepts delving into the teachings Void.
Perhaps the most requested (next to Night Elf Paladin) unavailable Paladin Race, the Forsaken Lightblade concept is essentially a new-age order of Paladins within Lordaeron, perhaps lead by Leonid Barthalomew.
In contrast to the Lightblade, the Cult of the Forgotten Shadow has created a new guard within their Order that utilizes the Shadow in tandem with the Light.
The idea here isn't to have the Forsaken wielding Void magic as a Paladin, but rather fully embracing the old lore of the Cult and their beliefs within the light.
Both Lightblade and Shadow Knight would be a unique name for the Forsaken, but the Lightblade would essentially use as-is Paladin spell FX while the Shadow Knight utilizes a unique spell kit that incorporates both shadowy magic and light (think Moira from Overwatch). This spell kit would also be available to Forsaken Priests.
Lead by Calia Menethil and Alonsus Faol together, these two concepts would open up a highly sought after class concept without fully destroying the ideals of Paladinhood and the Forsaken belief system.
Riftblades: Void Elf Paladins
With some Blood Knights exiled for their research in M'uru, it was realised that so too can other Dark Naaru powers be bent to their will.
With the teachings of old former High Elven paladins of the Silver Hand, some Void Elves have begun to attempt to cleanse their void.
Blood Elves can be Paladins - why can't Void Elves?
The idea here is one that builds off the old Blood Knight Lore. Back in the day, Blood Elves drained magic from the Naaru M'uru to acquire their power which later lead to the collapse and creation of a Dark Naaru. The concept here was to build upon that old idea of using energies from the Naaru to acquire Light-based powers, but flip it upon itself to drain those energies for Void themed powers.
This, of course, could lead to a rift within the Ren'dorei and lead some to lean more towards the light-side of the Naaru while others fully embrace its dark, twisted form.
The concept on the left (above) would essentially grant Void Elves a base-Paladin skin (for all those High Elves out there) while still leaning into the Void themed with the idea of a 'Void Paladin'.
The Riftblade spell kit would easily transfer to Void Elf Priests, Mages and even Warlocks to give them all a 'Void theme'
Tideguards and Embersworn: Kul'Tiran and Human Paladins
The Order of Embers, looking to completely purge the Drust from Kul Tiras, took inspiration from their Stormwindian cousins. Taking upon the essence of Silver, Liquid Fire, and combat, Azeroth may yet stand a chance against the ongoing Drust threat.
Kul Tiras introduced two new concepts that would make for perfect Paladin concepts. The first and most obvious one was the Tidesage Class concept (Tideguard).
With the Kul Tiras people putting their faith mostly within the sea itself and Tidesages seen in nearly every aspect of their island culture, why not make a 'Paladin Order' from it. This spell kit would introduce water themed spell FX and would of course apply to Mages, Shaman, Priests and even Monks!
The second concept here builds on the Order of Embers within Drustvar - witchhunters!
Using Steel, liquid fire and silver, these ancient Templars have dedicated their watch to fighting back the evils of the Drust. The idea here would be to expand on the Tauren Sunwalker kit and give it to an Alliance Class Skin, without taking all of the sun-themed abilities.
These would essentially be fire-holy Templars with a variety of iconic Paladin FX mixed with a new age 'Emberknight' feel to it.
Lightfangs and Lightguards: Worgen Paladins
Lightguards and Lightfangs, forces old and new to Gilneas, were one of few. Though there has always been some devotion to the Light, very few select Gilnean soldiers of the original Order of the Silver Hand remained. Now they look to renewing the Light's Dawn.
Gilneas worshipped the Light just as Lordaeron did and there has been a few Gilnean/Paladins mentioned throughout the years. The idea here is to simply introduce a new Class-race combo without much of a themed visual kit.
They worship the same Holy Light as their Stormwind/Lordaeron cousins, but we wanted to create a visual concept for 'Old Gilnean Templars' and a 'New Age Worgen Paladin' hence the variation in names.
Blood Knights and Sunblades: Blood Elf Paladins
With Liadrin's Blood Knights and Shattered Sunblades, there has always remained a rift in the teachings of the Light. After the Mag'har's tales of Yrel, and what was witnessed in the Vindicaar, some believe the Light is to be controlled, not called upon.
The idea here should be straightforward: Blood Knights have been in lore forever, even though their story changed at the end of BC.
The idea of the Sunblade concept would be to keep the original purpose of the Blood Knights in the wake of the Sunwells purification, causing a rift to form between them and the Paladins who take back the mantle of Blood Knight. The idea here was to incorporate some fiery elements to their abilities to give them a 'Sunwell flare' without taking too much from the Embersworn/Sunwalkers.
The new concept here would be to take the more recent aggressions of the Light - Shadowlands, Xera, AU Yrel - and bring that concept back. Blood Knights swear up a new oath to keep the Light in check, rather than suffer under it (without going full evil like they were in BC), giving contrast to any sort of plot that Turalyon pokes back up in as Regent of Stormwind.
Flamekeepers: Wildhammer and Dark Iron Dwarf Paladins
The Dark Irons wield a devotion to the Elemental Fire, serving as an elite form of soldier. Though some are rumoured to worship Ragnaros, most establish their firm belief and devotion to the new firelord, Smolderon.
So this idea is a bit of a double-concept within the same race.
For Dark Irons, these would pull on the flame spellkit from Sunwalkers (with a more fiery, darker tone) and embrace the idea of 'worshippers of the Molten Core' as their Faith. With the teasing of action within the Firelands happening in the AR questline, these Dark Irons have taken up an oath to the primal powers of the Firelands while still maintaining their faith in the Light, creating a literal Flame Paladin.
For the Wildhammers, I wanted a more radical idea.
Maybe the Wildhammer have viewed Fire as an enemy for so long - the explosion of Blackrock Mountain hundreds of years ago (and the expulsion from Grim Batol), the Dragons in the Second War with the Horde, the Cataclysm and Deathwing.
But after seeing their mountain cousins and fiery cousins brandishing their faith as a weapon (with the latter using both faith and fire), the Wildhammers have taken up a new mantle as wielders of the Sacred Flame ; a more shamanistic, tribal feel to the Paladin class (sunwalkers for Alliance without the Sun?) hence the less-plate.
Prelates: Darkspear and Zandalari Troll Paladins
Inspired by the Zandalari and rekindling relations between the tribes lead to an exchange in teachings and culture. Darkspear Prelates of the rebirthed Loa, Vol'jin, enact servitude to defend against the darkness.
In BFA, we met the Zandalari Prelates and there stands no reason why they didn't teach their Darkspear cousins how to wield the Light of the Loa!
The Prelates main themed kit would be using holy light with a more focused theme on the Loa themselves. The idea here wouldn't be that they call upon their powers from a single source - like the Prelates of Rezan once did - but rather calling upon the might of multiple Loa.
Bonus idea would have themed spell FX match the Zandalari racial that lets you choose your Loa for the Buff. 'Fury of the Loa' could turn to a visual representing said Loa - a golden tiger roar FX if you worship Kimbul, or a Deathmask and golden bones appear if you have the Bwonsamdi buff
Vindicators: Lightforged Draenei and Draenei Paladins
The Draenei Vindicators are no strangers to the Light, and after a deep understanding and millennia of teaching with devotion to the Naaru are able to harness power befitting their knowledge.
The idea here wouldn't to stray too far in terms of Spell FX (perhaps more glowing gold with crystalline themes) but focus the idea on the Naaru aligned Paladins and them being the most ancient of the playable Paladin races.
Mechaknights, Titanguards, and Junkblades: Mechagnome, Gnome, and Goblin Paladins
Research and rivalries between the Goblins and Gnomes lead to using new ways to harness the Light in ways only observed by the Titans. The newly established Mechaknights, Titanguards, and Junkblades use newfound technologies to their advantage.
The idea that Gnomes can be priests but not Paladins is a little silly, IMO. They can be warriors, they can be Death Knights - so there's no reason they can't be Paladins.
Gnome Paladins would essentially be Silverhand Paladins, while their Mech-cousins introduce a new flair for Paladins.
With Mechagnomes, we wanted to create something a little different by connecting their Paladin abilities to the Mechagnomes as a creation of the Titans. We incorporated a few themes taken from Mechagon - the Lightning/shock spells you see, and added some more references to Mimiron, the Discs of Norgannon and more!
Titanguard/ Junkblade were an idea that took the Gnome Paladin concept, the Mechagnome concept and combined them - essentially Goblins/Gnomes could have a similar kit as the Mechagnomes through means of stolen Titan Technology. We used a few themes here - the Titanguard uses the default lightning-blue themes seen on the Mechagnome as if she's wielding the very same technology that the Mechaknight wielded, while the Junkblade (really there's no difference in concepts here, just neat names that helped differentiate from Mechagnomes) uses Titan-defense technology. We used the Red theme as often in Uldir/Ulduar you see the bright red security lasers/protocols come online and we wanted to reflect that with 'Paladin abilities' that were 100% just tech-based without saying 'Oh yeah Goblins can be Paladins'
The amount of thought and work that Keyboardturn and TheLostCodex put into these is amazing. We look forward to seeing more from this collaboration.
For more details, thoughts, and images, check out the
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