|Concept art of elves|
|Related Races||Dark Elves|
Elves, called dal, are a playable race that play an important role in the history of EverQuest Next. Their utter dominance was mirrored by the Dal Era, a period in time in which elves led the other peoples, both in consent and by force.
The elves of Norrath are tall, slender humanoids gifted with immense beauty and unmatched grace. They are exceedingly powerful and proud, with an affinity for magic and a history of empires.
More than any other Combine race, elves are enamored with magic and the power that it represents. Their history, culture, and social customs are defined by their constant, obsessive pursuit of magic—and how they wield it when they have it.
Modern elves grew up hearing first- and second-hand accounts of the fallen Takish Empire, inspired by their ancestors who wielded the legendary high magic to gain power that rivaled even the gods.
Brought low by the empire's defeat, current generations of elves are learning to work with the other races in the Combine—but their ancient culture and prejudices will not change overnight. While not often overtly racist or prejudice, most elves' social interactions with other races have an aspect of arrogance to them.
Internally, elf society is defined by prominent families vying for power—political, economical, or magical. Bloodline is very important, and elves are often judged by the house they are from. Every aspect of life is an opportunity to prove their superiority--of themselves, their family, and their race.
Elf craftsmanship is unparalleled in its ability to combine beauty and practicality, without compromising either. Elves typically wear light clothing made from fine materials. Fashion, like all beauty, is very important to elf culture, and even the simplest of events requires a well-thought out outfit.
During the peak of the Takish Empire, elves were star travelers, Now, they're just star gazers. But wanderlust to explore the cosmos is still ingrained in their culture. Heavenly bodies—stars, moons, planets, galaxies—are primary motifs, and their sigils are smooth and elegant.
Common dal buried their dead in cemeteries. Noble families (the original Koada'Dal) have constructed elaborate family mausoleums that befit their station.
The Takish Empire was a monarchical society. The royal family was surrounded by other nobles that usually took leading positions in dal society, such as the Arch Mage, ministers and senior officers on the Council.
The Dal use a substance called Norite that they cover their spears and arrowheads with. It is a powerful poison against the lesser Dragon races, such as kobolds and even wyverns, but are rarely fatal against full-size dragons.
Philosophies and Groups
The Koada'Dal hold on to the notion of elves being the superior race. They are trying to reconnect to the Takish Empire and do not back away from enslaving other races, such as ogres. Their philosophy is highly racist and goes against the principles of the Combine. The Koada'Dal were therefore forbidden.
The Teir'Dal were an elite group of fighters but after the events in the Umbra they are now known as dark elves.
The Feir'dal are the common dal. They make up most of the dal population.
Bastion was an elven city located near the Serpentspine Mountains. The main gate was facing north with the wall stretching around to the west. To the east the ground plunged and the south eastern gate connected the fortress to the sea. It was here where the other peoples sought refuge during the Dragon War and where the Exodus began.
The capital city of the Takish Empire. It was destroyed by the events of the Ashfall and sit at the center of the magical maelstrom beyond the Ashfang in ruin. What secrets lie there are yet to be known.
The earliest dal kingdom dates back to the Lost Era, in a time known as the Age of Rebirth. New races were emerging, elves among them. It was a dangerous age, for much darkness still lurked upon and below the surface of Norrath.
In such desperate times, heroes began to arise among the races. For dal, these heroes would be the founders of some of their most ancient and noble houses, names like Thex, D'Vinn, Orprest, Tah'Re, Ondel, and others. At times these nobles competed against one another for standing or resources, and other times they formed alliances and worked together toward a common cause. Lesser houses pledged their fealty to the greater houses.
As they encountered other races and faced certain well-organized threats, it became apparent that the elves needed a greater sense of unity. It was decided that a ruler would be chosen from among the great houses. Though many had viable claims to the throne, through various maneuverings and negotiations (some of which would leave lingering hard feelings among those passed over), it was decided that the Thex had the strongest claim. The seat of House Thex, a keep they called Neriak, became the capital of the unified kingdom known as Amaril.
Even though they'd chosen a ruler, the great houses still wielded much power. These noble families who could trace their bloodlines back to the beginnings of their race were called Koada'Dal. Elves of lesser houses or common folk were known as Feir'Dal. There was no shame in this term--it was simply a distinction of class that was by no means seen as an insult.
The Teir'Dal trace their founding to the Plague Wars. Neriak was overrun by a tribe of goblins serving the Plaguebringer, and the Thex family was taken prisoner. A dal captain named Mathus T’Vyl led a band of his most skilled fighters--who donned black armor to avoid detection--into the besieged capital and rescued the Thex family. So grateful was Queen Thex that she promoted T'Vyl to general and bid him to found a new order of elite soldiers called the Teir'Dal. The order was placed under the charge of her son Donal Thex, a skilled combatant in his own right who was second in line to the throne.
The balance in dal society remained mostly stable into the Age of Allies, even as elven influence spread beyond their kingdom of Amaril and touched the other lands of Norrath. When the elves discovered how to wield High Magic, they were in the midst of a golden age... an age some among the Koada'Dal feared was being threatened by outside influences. The ogres who had traveled to Akashidak brought an aggressive new religion back to Norrath and were causing trouble. Orcs marched on dal holdings on Faydwer. Trolls from Kunark led a raiding party that captured the dal Arch Mage and attempted to steal the knowledge of High Magic for themselves.
These events, and others, caused members of the Koada'Dal to become more insular. The Feir'Dal, who tended to live alongside the other races and had more direct dealings with them, did not share these Koada'Dal fears. The division between castes became more pronounced. The Thex, who relied on the support of the people, attempted to walk the line between these two points of view. This, along with some poor decisions that were seen as weakening the kingdom, angered the Koada'Dal nobles and support for the monarchy waned.
The infiltration by the shissar brought validation to those Koada'Dal who had long been insisting that other races posed a threat. General Valinor Tah’Re, who had exposed the shissar menace, was embraced by the Koada’Dal as the epitome of what an elf should represent. They played upon the fears running rampant among the many kingdoms and put forward the notion that a single empire under the governance of Norrath’s finest protector would keep the world safe. Though there was not universal acceptance, the Takish Empire arose. To pacify elven traditionalists, the new empire did not supplant the Thex reign—for the good of his people, the weakened king ultimately bent the knee. Other kingdoms followed suit.
Relishing their absolute power, the Koada’Dal elite looked down not only on the other races, but upon the lower castes of elves as well. The term Feir’Dal began to carry a connotation of collusion with enemy races, and common dal grew fearful of using it.
The Ashfall shifted the balance of power. Though the Takish Empire continued in name, it only did so through a compromise that involved returning much sovereignty to subject kingdoms. The Koada’Dal, who lost many of their number in the destruction of Takish’Hiz, hoped that they could eventually regain their influence over the empire and that these new-found freedoms were a temporary condition. How long this version of the empire would have persisted is unknown, for the Dragon War put an end to it and ultimately gave birth to the Combine.
Now the tables were turned. Koada’Dal became the tainted name, for to call oneself that was tantamount to admitting culpability in the crimes carried out by the Tah’Re. Even those born to the great houses stopped calling themselves Koada’Dal... at least in public. In secret, the Koada’Dal plotted to one day restore the glory of the Takish Empire and become the rulers of the world again. The ruby ring is a symbol of that destiny.