When people hear the word elf they picture, graceful, slender, and tall men and women with pointy ears. An elf is a being that is a master with a bow and arrow or a sword, while living hidden in the forests. In recent years, the media has sparked new interest in these supernatural beings. From Dungeon and dragons to The Lord of The Rings, even video games seem to include elves in their universe.
In 1974, Gary Gygax and Dave Ameson designed the table-top fantasy role-playing game known as Dungeons and Dragons (D& D). Being first published by Tactical Studio Rules Inc. The concept of the game was to take a unique spin on war gaming. Players would create their own character and form a small party to go on quests.
The quests would cover exploration, slaying monsters, completing quests, and interacting with the inhabits of local towns and cities. The dungeon master is the storyteller and resolves conflicts between players. They appear in charge of the hero’s adventure, creating inhabits, developing settings, and monsters the heroes interact with. The goal of the game is to advance your character through adventures through a series of sessions.
While creating a party there is always one person who wants to play the scout or ranger in the party for protection and to create rations for the journey. Through the different editions most suggest creating an elf character. Elves are given boosts for being attuned with nature and being gifted with bows or short ranged weapons. Their enhanced senses allow them to scout ahead of the party, targeting enemies at a great distance while using the bow usually hitting its target.
Novels and Films
The best introduction of the elvish race was in The Lord of The Rings by J. R.R. Tolkien. Despite Tolkien’s other novel, The Hobbit. being created in 1037, most fans were introduced to the second trilogy. The series is about a young hobbit named Frodo and his quest to destroy the one ring.
For me and other fans, I was more interested in Legolas, played by Orlando Bloom, in the film’s adaptation of the novels. Legolas was what most people would picture elves in real life. A person taller then a human with long hair, pointy ears, and unnatural colored eyes. Throughout the series he is an ally to the party shooting down the enemy and having a playful contest with Gandelf, the dwarf in their party.
There’s no surprise that video game companies have decided to get in on the fantasy style of gameplay that was first created by Dungeons and Dragons. Well-known games like Dragon Age and Skyrim, allow players to play out a fantasy adventure while selecting a supernatural race. Another series called Jak and Daxter by Naughty Dog, have the citizens of the game have the characteristics of elves.
During my few years as a cosplayer, I have noticed that there is a version of elves in every campaign that is focused in a fantasy setting. The requirements to play this race is simple, all you need is a pair of pointy ears, that you can buy at a costume shop or create your own. There are two versions of fake ears latex and silicone, which is applied with spirit gum or superglue in some cases.
There are also headbands with the ears sewed on or ear cuffs with metal bent into the shape of an elf ear for a person to wear. In my case, I was unable to wear these, so I would wear my hair down during the game hiding my human ears from sight. Those that play the elf race act like nobles treating humans as insects, and actcold and distant to other races. I usually play this race because I enjoy pretending to be an elf. I’m sure I’m not the only cosplayer or Larper who wish they could become their character.
Furthermore, it’s clear that society enjoys featuring these beings in current media. Many people wish to become elves and live in their realm. Becoming a humanoid creature Intune with the natural realm. For those who are already a nature lover, will create a deeper understanding and a way to protect the environment. Perhaps one day we will find the hidden elvish city and hopefully be embraced by their society.
Now, shush, I’m trying to read,