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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:48 am 
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Journeyman Hunter
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I have a theory of a sort, and I wish to see if it seems sound to anyone else outside my head.
So, what do we know about scythehorns prior to Legion?
-High Elf use them as heraldry (on ship sail at least)
-The only mounts were from an Elf faction in exil
(There's a damn lot of their cousins with stripes on another continent, too)

For this theory, I'll go by the principle that a new model don't mean a new specie (see old and new hippogriffe), so Legion's Scythehorns are the same as WotLK's Scythehorns.
I think before the Scourge, there was three type of mounts in Quel'thalas; Hawkstrider, Dragonhawk and Scythehorns. I'm not sure which would have been used for which work but anyway. Enter the Scourge. BAM, Quel'thalas loose half its exploitable land, and probably a good part of their breeders. But the hawkstrider and dragonhawk are both predators that lay eggs and grow probably pretty fast. Their population stay steady enough to be useful still, or doesn't drop too low. (I think the dragonhawk suffered a little longer as they have to grow to enormous size before being mount, and you don't see that much of them as mounts before end of BC and WotLK)
But if the Scythehorns have a reproduction like horses, it will be one year gestation for one baby that can't be rided before another two years at least. Probably need more land to graze too, so the remaining population in Quel'thalas wouldn't be steady enough for years before being able to produce mounts (I guess the first ones would stay with the breeders for reproduction) So the only ones prior Legion would be foals coming from the stables of exiled breeders (the Silver Covenant) that suffered less than the ones still in the country.
So, the pvp Scythehorns Horde can get now would be the first young animals that the blood Elf breeders can allow to sell! Same with the Alliance but high Elf.

Does it look sound?

(Second theory about the origin of the Scythehorns : there was a lot of proto-scythehorns prior to the War of the Ancient, that were separated in two or three population. The futur zhevra and the futur runners. Depend if Broken Isles ones and Quel'thalas ones are different or not. Maybe there wasn't Scythehorns in the north first, but the exiled Highborns took some from the Isles in their way to the new country?)

Coming next week with a theory about the origins of the Hawkstrider. Dumdumduuuum

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Last edited by Inay on Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:16 am 
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I like this theory a lot.

It's also possible that High-Elves-to-be brought them from Kalimdor, just like they did with their night sabers. Under the effect of Sunwell, over generations night sabers turned into lynxeswe see on Sunstrider Isle. Perhaps there was similar transformation with Scythehorns that would explain why Silver Covenant's mounts are different from the ones we see on the Broken Isles (gameplay mechanics aside, of course).

Another reason for cut population can be a mix of Sunwell ceasing to function mixed with Blood Elves starting to use Fel and Burning Crystals to power the city. If I remember correctly, the starting quests on Sunstrider Isle have young Belves deal with Lynxes and treants going crazy and aggressive due to the crystals. Perhaps, surviving horses were weakened, went sick or plain died from the same effect in their majority. The Scourge's influence also affected the lynxes along the Scar in Ghostlands, so there are enough reasons for Silvermoon's population of Scythehorns to be all but gone. Silver Covenant's mounts remained away from Silvermoon with its mix of Fel and necromantic energies, so its numbers had a chance to stay relatively high.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2017 4:03 am 
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Let's play with it. :D

Good point for the lynxes! And for the Sunwell. I don't remember if we see the hawks affected too?
For the differences I was also thinking, maybe the ones of the Silver Covenant were crossbreeded with horses? If they lived with the humans it could have happened? Or helped to bring new blood even.

I wonder what was the base color of the Hawkstrider, the color they had when it was still a wild specie. They are birds, so it could be any of them! Maybe the green one, to be a better predator before the elves comes and put the forest in eternal autumn. But I was wondering too, the black are always used for the war (I know it's for gameplay but stay with me please), maybe the black line are the most near of their wild ancestors and breed for qualities others than the nice feathers of their colorful siblings? Or it would be a special line that is black because black?
[Edit] And then I remembered that the Sunreaver Hawkstrider is also black. Theory doesn't work.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2017 5:05 am 
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The level 20 blue-quality Hawkstider mounts also have the following description: "Some of our brethren prefer horses, but the hawkstrider will always be the true symbol of Silvermoon. -Winaestra". Quel'dorei Steed's description is: "Comes from a lineage of fine horses that once grazed near the shores of the Well of Eternity." So it's possible "horses" was used for both normal human horses as well as scythehorns / monohorns. Additionally, Well of Eternity mention on Quel'dorei steed might be a hint that they were brought along.

Dragonhawks are mentioned being native to Quel'thalas. Tbh, I don't remember much of them, but the ones around Silvermoon are "Crazed". Whether they are affected by Fel energies coming from Silvermoon, by Scourge or who knows what, I cannot tell :D

There is little known about Hawkstriders. They resemble Tallstiders of Kalimdor (game mechanically using heavily modified models of Tallstiders), but I have not seen a mention whether they are native to Quel'thalas or came from Kalimdor and been affected by Sunwell anywhere. If they're not native, but had been brought along like horses or felines, that would expain why we see no wild hawkstriders :D

Edit: it's possible that in addition to native Dragonhawks, Quel'thalas had a healthy population of native felines that were also later affected by the Sunwell. Trolls in the area tame the cats and even worship a Lynx loa as well.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:33 am 
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The level 20 blue-quality Hawkstider mounts also have the following description: "Some of our brethren prefer horses, but the hawkstrider will always be the true symbol of Silvermoon. -Winaestra". Quel'dorei Steed's description is: "Comes from a lineage of fine horses that once grazed near the shores of the Well of Eternity." So it's possible "horses" was used for both normal human horses as well as scythehorns / monohorns. Additionally, Well of Eternity mention on Quel'dorei steed might be a hint that they were brought along

That would make sense as we still don't have an in-universe name for the specie!

I think the "crazed" are like the lynxes and treant yeah!

I don't know if the Hawkstrider would come with the Highbornes. What incentives would they have to bring some kind of tallstrider with them? I think the hawkstrider are also natives of Quel'Thalas, and happen to be big predatory non-flying birds too, with no common lineage with the tallstriders. (Like the ostrich and casoar in the real world!) They seems really different of them, I think. Bigger, with longer wings and a totally different beak, and lot of feathers. Maybe they have been so domesticated that they no longer exist in the wild?

I really don't know for the lynxes. Both theory seems credible to me.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 2:39 am 
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Seems like I just can not let this topic go, haha :D

For the sake of it, I went over the descriptions of Dragonhawks pets / mounts / etc.
Armored Red Dragonhawk: "This rare breed of dragonhawk is a mark of honor in the Horde, gifted by the blood elves". So, at least we know reds = rare :D

Appears to be a similar thing with hawkstriders: "What do you mean is it dyed? Oh, the bird. We did touch up the red just a little. - Trellis Morningsun".


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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:32 am 
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Also, just regarding the hawkstriders, they were actually aiming to use a Cockatrice as the concept, which would have tied in nicely with the dragonhawks, both being very hybrid-esque. Not sure why they changed there mind, but they weren't too different in the long run.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:03 am 
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That long tail, unf, do want D:
Also interesting to note that Dragonhawks and Hawkstriders in concepts both have the overlapping scale plates (?) coming from neck down.

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Unread postPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 3:27 am 
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Not really breaking news, since it was reported both by WoWHead and MMO-Champion, but it seems next WoW Novel would be dedicated to the Troll Wars and the settlement of exiled elves in Eastern Kingdoms after the initial landing in Lordaeron.
I wonder if we'll see mentions of sabers / horses the High Elves-to-be brought with them and / or the wildlife of Quel'Thalas.


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Unread postPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 4:46 pm 
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!! Oh, yeah, I hope so!

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:18 pm 
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Behold! For I now have a new theory (which have nothing to do with elves this time)

I remember comments about the similarities between wolf/worg and the damn too many cats and I have an idea to explain ! Which simply is "parallel evolution"
See, wolves and worgs are not related, nor are they the idea of a Titan (probably? Can never be certain with them) but this physical appearance is the optimal one for pursuit-based pack predators (*with the condition of being a vertebrate, I think ?), so two different lineages on two planets came to the same form for that.
Same for the new panthara/marsuul of Argus and the saber/cat of Azeroth. Optimal form for a vertebrate ambush predator.
I... Have nothing to also explain the names similarities.

It's 3h in the morning and I can't sleep, I'm not even sure if I make sense. xD Sorry if I don't

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:03 pm 
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This thread makes me very happy, Its fun musing over and putting the jigsaw together. As for, "parallel evolution", yes!

And we have a perfect example of this now.

The Talbuks being originally from Argus, taken off the planet as stock by the Draenei, and evolving in two different time lines/directions.

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That said, we also have no idea if the Talbuk on Argus have also evolved after the legion trashed it. It could actually be that the Outland or Draenor versions are truer to the original stock. That taken into consideration, it's more likely that it may be the Draenor stock, as they have probably suffered the least hardships/challenges to the spices and thus maybe less evolution was needed to survive.

Argus has had it pretty rough by the looks of the planet, and Outland, a LOT of the fauna was exposed to magic's and the likes after it was ripped apart by all the portals. But then Nagrand did still look to be one of the least effected by the shattering out Outland, so who knows. :D


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:43 pm 
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SpiritBinder wrote:
That said, we also have no idea if the Talbuk on Argus have also evolved after the legion trashed it.

The flavour text for the new Ruinstrider mounts indicates they have:
Quote:
Talbuks, native to Argus, have evolved chitinous plates to survive the decades of ceaseless war that ravages the landscape.

E.g.: http://www.warcraftmounts.com/mounts/am ... trider.php

Evolution in WoW seems very different to the real world. Things evolve very rapidly in response to changes in the environment and/or magic. This seems to happen within a period of thousands of years for a degree of change which would normally take millions of years in the real world.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:15 am 
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Inay wrote:
I remember comments about the similarities between wolf/worg and the damn too many cats and I have an idea to explain!


I distinctly remember that in "Rise of the Horde" by Christie Golden orcs were genuinely surprised by Jaguars from the Swamp of Sorrows, which lead me to believe Draenor did not have felines of its own. Of course, it's been millennia ago, and WoD's Draenor already had cats :D

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And before the gathered orcs could truly begin to grow worried, the image of the swamp reappeared and the orcs hurried through. They were grinning from ear to ear. More than half of them carried the carcases of large animals. One was a reptile of some sort, scaly, long-tailed, with stubby legs and huge jaws. The other was a four-legged, furry thing, with claws on all four of its feet, a long tail, small rounded ears and spots on its yellow, glossy coat. Both were obviously healthy specimens.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 2:06 am 
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Well yeah I'd say Draenor stock of Talbuk would be the most "pure"

I can make images for these later if you want.

Gorlocs and Jinyu are from Murlocs.

Elves are from Trolls.

Um Drakes are from Proto-drakes who I'd say come from something close to a Devilsaur? Judging by the little ting arms XD

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:17 am 
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There are many 'ancient equine spirit' in the Highborne wing of Diremaul dungeon

http://www.wowhead.com/npc=14566/ancient-equine-spirit

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 7:36 am 
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About the talbuks : In the PTR, at the beginning of Mac Aree zone, there's a place with draenei ghosts forever fleeing Argus (the ones that couldn't get in the Genedar with Velen in time). The talbuks fleeing with them use -sadly- the WoD model.

Shelassa, you remind me that there IS feline-form in Draenor! The tigers! (I.. had completly forgotten them before you speak of jaguar) Maybe they were confounded by the build difference between a tiger-like beast and a jaguar? Or they were not from Talador. (After all, cats-like are ambush predators, I guess if you're not from the region you may not even know their existence?)
By the way, how to the Panthara hunt with their glowing part? Can we suppose that, at the origine, Argus forest were glowing? Mana ray have a glowing under too, if they hunted from the canopy it could make sense, I think?

Oh, what about the cloud-serpent? Would they be parents of the dragons too?

Good point Pop! It still use the palomino horse model?

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