Forsaken RP Guide: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Rot!

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Forsaken RP Guide: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Rot!

Post by Aadaria-Ioanna on Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:53 pm

Forsaken RP Guide: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Rot!
By Terick

There are not a lot of Forsaken role players out there these days. What with the new races and difficulty in properly portraying a member of the Undead without falling into a mary sue cliche. I can understand how it may look intimidating and unappealing to some. Forsaken are traditionally introverted characters, mostly keeping to themselves or their own kind. At first glance this makes it seem like you'd have a harder time with meaningful interaction with other role players.

Thats only if you consider a meaningful interaction to be loitering outside or inside of one of Orgrimmar's many Inns, or if you just have to be accepted in character by everyone around you everywhere you go. If you take a closer look at the Forsaken you will see that there is so much more to them than meets the eye. A character is defined by the decisions it makes and how they live with the consequences of their actions. To go deeper, character development occurs when a character is presented with a conflict and the Forsaken are presented with many internal and external conflicts.

Five minutes into your first Forsaken character you will see a group of Forsaken presented with an internal conflict universal to all Forsaken characters. I'm referring to the starting quest, "The Wakening," where you are instructed to calm the wayward undead; Lilian Voss, Valdred Moray, and Marshal Redpath. Moray will accept his fate with open arms, while Marshal Redpath will decide to rebel. Much of his dialog was removed when Cata went live, but in the old dialog one could see his descent into madness and rage. This leads him to create the Rotbrains, whom attempt to invade Deathknell.

The third character, Lillian Voss, has a much more interesting fate. Unable to accept her new state she flees and is later captured by her father. Realizing that she is about to be killed by the one person she loved in life, she mercilessly strangles her father. Everything she was put through finally forced her to accept what she was, a killing machine. These three Forsaken had to struggle with accepting what they were and as you can see two of them were successful and one was not.

Undead are faced with numerous external threats. The Alliance, the Scarlet Crusade, the Remnants of the Scourge, and the Gilnean Liberation Front are the most obvious enemies. However one does not need to look very far to see an external conflict. As a Forsaken character you will have a tough pill to swallow, you can either accept the creation of new Undead or denounce it. Many Forsaken believe that the plague should die with them and not be spread, while others believe that it is a necessary evil and believe that their race is worth keeping around. In the end it is up to you to decide, and how you choose to act on your beliefs will help define your Forsaken.

The Forsaken struggle day to day just to survive in a hostile world. On top of that they fight an internal battle within themselves, fighting not to descend into madness or despair. To be a Forsaken requires depth and complexity, to be a Forsaken requires you to not wear your emotions on your sleeve, to be a Forsaken requires you to have thick skin and understand the difference between in character and out of character interactions.

If you are ready to give my favorite race a shot read on.

-Race Relations
-The End

Part 1: Physiology

Forsaken Physiology

Portraying a Forsaken accurately requires an understanding of how your character experiences the world around him/her. Unlike other characters we must consider how death has affected our senses and physical appearance.

Height and Weight

Forsaken are shorter and lighter than the average Human, because of the effects of death. Decay causes the body to waste away and thus you will weigh less than you did in life. The degradation of the bones and spine tend to cause Forsaken to lose a few inches of height after death.

For example. In life Terick weighed 180lbs and was 5'10. In death he weighs 140lbs and is 5'8.


Some Forsaken consider themselves to be as old as they were when they were alive, others use age as a measurement of how long they have been dead. Physiologically age means little to the Forsaken. It is unknown how long it will take a Forsaken to decompose completely, however there are instances of a Forsaken's mind decaying to the point where they go insane and become a mindless one.

It should be noted that Forsaken Apothecaries can "repair" Forsaken, further elongating their life span.


Forsaken do not bleed, their blood has completely coagulated.


One of the most important aspects of the Forsaken is how they experience the world. In many cases they do not experience anything or their senses are simply dulled.


Picture for a moment that you body has gone cold. You are missing skin and maybe even body parts. The pain would be unbearable, it would consume you. Fortunately for you death has dulled your sense of touch to the point where you feel almost nothing. Pain and pleasure is a thing of the past for you. The pain of undeath is no longer present, but you can never feel the warm embrace of a loved one.

Forsaken can still feel pressure though. They feel the ground beneath them and the sword in their hand. Thats the extent of it however, everything will feel waxy at best.


Whether or not your Forsaken can see depends on if they have eyes or not. The Forsaken are like Humans in that they can train a sense to be stronger to compensate for the loss of another sense.


If your Forsaken has properly functioning ears and ear drums they can hear, if not they cannot hear. Much like sight, hearing tends to be stronger because of the loss of the other senses.

Taste and Smell

Food no longer has any taste to it, your ability to digest it is based on if your organs are still intact. Without the ability to taste you cannot smell either. This has prompted the Forsaken to create many disturbing dishes, which they consume for recreational purposes. Other Forsaken will give up food altogether.

When I role played on Terick I used to always deny food and drink, because it reminded him of his past life. Many Forsaken refuse to consume food or pervert the food they consume for this reason, they simply want to forget and move on.

Part 2: Psychology

Forsaken Psychology

The next thing to consider when portraying a Forsaken is how your Forsaken percieves the world around them. How will you cope with the fact that everyone you knew and everything you cared about is dead, undead, or ready to raise arms against you? Will your emotions be clouded by your suffering or will you find the will power and compassion to work past that and become one of those rare and tragic "good" Forsaken? To answer these questions you will need to put yourself into an inconcievable position, you must think like the dead.


As I said in the beginning of this guide, the Forsaken do not wear their emotions on their sleeve. We are an introverted race, mostly because we've been burned in the past on an individual level. Also because of the mistrust between our race and the other Horde races, we tend to manifest our feelings by being hostile and pushing people away.


The Forsaken do feel fear, although they usually have little reason for it. Pain is the source of fear, it keeps a person alive. We do not feel physical pain. That leaves emotional pain, something an individual could very well fear. Many Forsaken may go out of their way to not get hurt by pushing people away and keeping to themselves. Many Forsaken have accepted their state and wish to continue living, so they have come to fear dying a second time. In the end its up to you what your character fears and does not fear.

Terick existed only to fight and kill. He did this because he did not want to face his past and was looking for a battlefield to die on. In the end his past caught up with him and consumed him. So he was afraid of facing what he had done and when he finally did he choose to kill himself instead of living with it.


As a member of the undead you may come to envy the living. That envy could easily turn to hatred, as you see them take their precious life for granted. The Undead are just as envious as their Human counterparts.


With the inability to pursue romantic interests, your Undead may seek to fill that void with something else. It could be power, money, magic, anything. The Undead are very willful and without the physical needs or restrictions placed on the living they are free to pursue their lusts by any means neccesary.


Anger is a natural thing to feel when you wake up and find yourself to be Undead. What you choose to direct this anger against will be up to you, just remember that there are consequences for your actions.


Contrary to popular belief, we do feel joy. It could be something you feel when you remember something good about your life, or it could be from when you triumph over an enemy. Either way you are still capable of being happy, just remember that whats important is how you express this happiness.

My Warlock used to find happiness in watching new adepts train, because it reminded her of her now deceased mentor. She began training adepts because it made her happy, and although she was hard, she showed them compassion from time to time and acted as their mentor in death.


Forsaken in general tend to mourn their past lives. Much of what happens to them in the world they take in stride and if they feel sorrow they do not express it openly, or they channel it into something else.

While my Warlock mourned the passing of her mentor, she carried on in his honor. Nobody could tell any difference in her and when she mentions him in conversation she is very stoic about it.


Love is tricky, because most Forsaken are not compassionate enough to love another person. However, love is not impossible. It could be argued that the purest form of love is between a Forsaken and another person. Physical contact brings little joy and all the couple will have is their feelings for one another. I'd be interested in seeing this play out between two good roleplayers, but I have never seen it done before.

Part 3: Classes


Picking your class and finding your place in the world is your next step. Forsaken traditionally keep their old professions and combat skills from life, altering them slightly in death.


Every faction needs those willing to fight in hand to hand combat and occupy land by force. The Forsaken are no different. The will power and resilience it takes to transition from life to death make the Dead excellent Warriors. And while they may lose some of their strength, they more than make up for it in the endurance they gain from undeath.

Warriors who choose to pick up the sword and shield to protect their comrades pay a terrible price. While they may still receive the positive effects of healing, the Holy Light will cause them incredible pain.

Despite these disadvantages, the Forsaken have no shortage of Warriors in their ranks. Many serve in the Death Guard, while others choose to work for the Apothecary.


Many Forsaken become Magi to satisfy their lust for arcane power. Others follow this path to capture a feeling of being alive again. Those that do this follow a creed called, "the Echo of Life." They believe that an echo of life exists within each Forsaken and attempt to tap into it through arcane magic.

Regardless of their motivations for becoming magi, these Undead are accepted into the Forsaken with open arms. Many decide to become Apothecaries, while others take to serving in the Death Guard as battle magi.


To date the Forsaken are the only faction to openly accept Warlocks into their society. With this level of acceptance it is not surprising that some of the most powerful Warlocks in Azeroth are Forsaken. Like the Magi many Warlocks follow the teachings of the Echo of Life. Unlike the Magi these Forsaken turn to the power of the Burning Legion to accomplish their goals.


Priests in the Forsaken are separated into two categories. Those who forsake the Holy Light and embrace the shadow, and those who continue to wield the Holy Light.

Those who embrace the shadow often follow a new creed called, "the Cult of the Forgotten Shadow." It is here that they learn to balance the light and shadow, mastering both and practicing a self-centered version of their former faith.

Those who continue to wield the Holy Light suffer terribly. When wielding this power it burns them much as it would burn any undead creature. They are only able to wield such a power through intense willpower. Many who continue to wield the Holy Light seek redemption, even though they know they can never achieve it. Others simply use it in the interests of the Forsaken.

Death Knight

Much like Warlocks, Death Knights are accepted into the Forsaken with open arms. Many important Death Knights serve directly under Sylvanas, such as Koltira Deathweaver. It is only reasonable to assume that other Death Knights would follow his lead and fight for the Forsaken, as they share similar struggles and will not find the level of acceptance anywhere else in Azeroth. Most Forsaken see Forsaken Death Knights as Forsaken first, Death Knights second.


Freshly risen hunters will find that their connection with nature has been severed. While they can still tame beasts and maintain their skill in ranged combat, these hunters will feel something missing. Many hunters fill the void through the dark arts, similar to the Dark Rangers but adapted to their unique form of ranged combat.


Bandits, thieves, and cut throats are welcomed into the Forsaken with open arms. Many of them find their way into organizations such as the Deathstalkers or the Lightslayers, while less skilled Rogues join the Apothecary or Death Guard as spies and raiders.

Part 4: Culture


Understanding the culture will allow you to better interact with your environment. Many aspects of Forsaken culture are simply twisted aspects of Human culture. The Forsaken are also fierce and protective of their lands, defending their one true refuge from the world to the death. Much of the culture revolves around fanatical service to the Dark Lady.


Forsaken consume food for recreation. Their inability to taste food coupled with their ability to live without it have prompted them to create some disturbing dishes. It is not uncommon to see maggot eyes or sour milk on the menu at a Forsaken tavern.


Many Forsaken will continue to wear the garb they were buried in, allowing it to be covered in blood and whatever other strange fluids they happen to be working with. They do this to as a way of mocking the living and mourning their old life. Without the need for clothing, many simply elect to just stay in the same rags for the rest of their existence, unless their new station in unlife requires them to wear something else.

Respect for the Dead

The Forsaken respect the dead above all else. Every new Forsaken is given free will and the choice to serve or go their own way. New Forsaken are treated much like children, guided and nurtured. Those succumbing to mindlessness are comforted and at the point of "death" are given a mercy killing. Disrespecting the dead is taboo and will quickly earn you a lot of enemies.

Gender Equality

Forsaken society is unique in that there is no gender discrimination. Forsaken, both male and female, serve in every part of society from the military to the Cult of the Forgotten Shadow.


Many Forsaken have given up religion, turning to their leader and dark science instead. Those who choose to continue following a particular faith usually follow the Cult of the Forgotten Shadow or the Echo of Life. Among the Forsaken are a few noble souls who continue to follow the Church of the Holy Light aswell.

Cult of the Forgotten Shadow

The Cult is the Forsaken version of the Church of the Holy Light. It is a self-centered version of the faith, based around the five virtues of the church: Respect, Tenacity, Power, Death, and Compassion. Through these virtues, Forsaken attempt to manipulate the universe around them through willpower alone. Those who succeed ascend to another state of being, they become Shadow Ascendants, beings of pure shadow.

The church is primarily made up of Priests who feel they have been abandoned by the Holy Light. However, any Forsaken can embody the virtues of the Cult. The Lightslayers, a sect of assassins, is heavily associated with the Cult and takes on a deadly interpretation of the creed.

Many sects for the church exist and as of now there is no united front for the Cult. It is currently based in Deathknell and is steadily increasing in numbers.

Echo of Life

The Echo of Life is not so much a religion as it is a way of life. Many Forsaken are unable to give up on their pasts lives and seek to capture the feeling of being alive again. They believe an echo of life exists within all Forsaken, that can be tapped into through the use of arcane and fel magic. Thus most followers of this creed are magi and warlocks.

Many of the followers do not believe they can be affected negatively by magic, and recklessly use it to capture their echo of life. In the end many are destroyed by it, while others become dangerously addicted. Still many Forsaken continue this way of life.

Part 5: Military


The Forsaken military is separated into three wings. The Death Guard, the combat arm of the Forsaken. The Royal Apothecary Society, the research and development organization for the military. And the Deathstalkers, the spymasters and assassins. Much of the Forsaken war machine is based around their greatest weapon, the plague.

Death Guard

An army that does not need to eat, sleep, or drink and is resistant to all environmental hazards. The Death Guard is the sledgehammer of the Forsaken military, sent in to pound away at an enemy relentlessly until they break. While the Death Guard does not appear to be as well armed as their Alliance counterparts, they far surpass them in logistics and endurance, and in warfare this is far more important than individual skill.

The Death Guard has fought in every major conflict and has guarded the Forsaken homeland for almost ten years. Recently they have taken a major hit to their reputation with Putress' rebellion, and have been ejected from the Undercity, replaced by Kor'Kron Overseers. Still they press on, fighting the Gilneans to the south and the Scourge to the east.


A society of assassins that used to be under the command of Varimathras. Only the most skilled and deadly Rogues were selected as candidates. Only the best candidates make it to graduation, while the rest do not make it back at all. With the loss of It's leader and credibility, the Deathstalkers have taken a major hit. However, the Forsaken will always need spies and assassins so this organization is sure to make a come back.

Royal Apothecary Society

The Forsaken responsible for the engineering of the infamous plague of undeath and plague machines. The Society is divided into three branches: Research and Development, Testing, and Implantation. The Research and Development branch is primarily composed of mages and apothecaries whom administer the tests and develop new technology. The Testing branch is comprised of Rogues, Warriors, and Hunters whom collect test subjects for the researchers, and the Implantation branch are the ones who actually put the finished product to work in combat.

After the Wrath gate incident, the Society took a major hit in credibility due to Putress being among their ranks. They now work to regain the trust of the Horde while continuing to develop the plague in secret. It's ranks have recently been bolstered by Val'kyr and Scourge Necromancers due to the lack of progress on the new plague.

Part 6: Race Relations

Race Relations


Relations with the Orcs are shaky at best. Thrall allied the Horde with the Forsaken due to a common shared bond, both races had recently been freed from slavery. However, the recent addition of the Val'kyr to the Forsaken and the Wrath gate incident have severely weakened Orc-Forsaken relations and Kor'Kron now police the tunnels of the Undercity.

On a personal level, many of the old Forsaken grew up fighting Orcs in the Second War or had relatives who never came back from the battlefield. Some prejudice may remain for these Forsaken, especially with the Kor'Kron occupying their capital.


The Tauren find the Forsaken to be an affront to nature and find their stench to be unbearable. However, the Forsaken have a champion among the Tauren. Magatha Grimtotem was instrumental in bringing the two races together. Many Tauren also feel pity for the Forsaken and actively seek a cure for their undeath, although most Forsaken believe such a thing is impossible.


Trolls, much like the Tauren, mistrust the Forsaken and believe them to be unclean. The Trolls however have a great respect for those Forsaken who have become Shadow Ascendants, believing them to be similar to their death spirits. The two races have had little interaction outside of the battlefield however, and appear to trust each other in combat.


Many Goblins operate businesses and transportation services inside Forsaken territory. The two races have two things in common, they both care little for nature and they both desire power. This makes them natural business partners.

Blood Elves

The Forsaken and Blood Elves share much in common. Both races were once members of the Alliance and both fought a day to day battle against the Scourge just to survive after the Third War. The two have worked together in the past to secure the Plaguelands and fight back the Scourge, and through these joint operations they have developed a sort of friendship.


Relations with their former comrades have turned sour for the Forsaken, on a personal and national level. Abandoned by their families, many Forsaken no longer have any love for the living and will actively attack them. On a national level, attacks from the Scarlet Crusade and Alliance have made it clear that Humans see them as little more than renegade Scourge.

Further complicating matters is the desire to retake Ordering for humanity, which the Forsaken do not intend to give up any time soon. Humans remain the number one enemy of the Forsaken, especially with the fall of the Lich King.


The Forsaken detest the Worgen just as much as they do Humans. With the hostility on the border and the recent campaign against the Gilnean Liberation Front, tensions are high and will most likely never go away.

Dwarves, Gnomes, Draenei

As members of the Alliance these three nations have declared themselves to be enemies of the Forsaken. In other circumstances there would most likely be little contact between these four races, due to their lack of claims in Forsaken lands. It means little however, for the Forsaken show little mercy to anyone regardless of their race.


The End?

That concludes my guide on RPing a Forsaken. Remember these are just guidelines to help you create your new Forsaken persona. You should put your own twist in and make it all your own, because in the end the Forsaken are one of the most diverse races on Azeroth. Whatever you decide to do, have fun with it.

Afterword: I wrote this guide almost two years ago and people still bring it up to me every now and again. I'm happy that my guide has helped people and has given them a different perspective on Forsaken RP. This guide is not the leading authority on how to roleplay a Forsaken, and I never intended it to be. There are other Forsaken RP guides out there and I encourage you to read them and mine, and to come up with your own way to roleplay your Forsaken. At the end of the day we're all individuals and we all have our own ideas and perspectives, and sharing those with each other make us better at what we do.

(Rest of this Post Reserved for *Drum Roll* FAQ)



A grain of sand leaves an invisible trace upon the face of a rock, a million grains of sand and thousands of years reduce a mountain to nothing. So shall every good deed count towards the Greater Good.

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Re: Forsaken RP Guide: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Rot!

Post by Eodan on Sun Jul 29, 2012 6:40 am

*Thumbs up*

Eodan Sergeant of Arathor - "Wha' 'appens, 'appens."
Leonath The Red Sand - "Accuracy, discipline, survivabiliy." - Gone Rogue
Theenus Paladin of the Blacksoot clan - "Nae, nae, och please not tae frying pan!"
Nathanìel The Thief - "Me? I would never!"
Thalareon The Frozen - "It is mine."
Hodain Groovie Grandad - "Humdidum... Whoop!"
Hyanadil Flawed ranger - "Whoops-.. I missed that on purpose!"
Quèntyn Rising noble - "A kingdom may fall, but it's legacy will not."
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