paperclipchains (paperclipchains) wrote,

Warcraft Ladystats

So it's really no secret that Warcraft is a giant bucket or race/genderfail, but I did little stat-analyses and character breakdowns for a couple of other games and series, so I decided I'd do one for the Warcraft universe as well.

So I hit up WoWWiki and dug out all of the women listed on the noteworthy pages, omitted anyone who was only there because they were like Thrall's mom or something, and threw a little sample list together of women lore characters to pull some percentages/ratios/etc from. For those with no familiarity with Warcraft I'll try to explain the dismal results as I go.

The list: (All listed as "major lore characters of the past/present") Aegwynn, Jaina Proudmoore, Tyrande Whisperwind, Maiev Shadowsong, Alleria Windrunner, Sylvanas Windrunner, Vareesa Windrunner, Garona Halforcen, Ysera, Alexstrasza, Azshara, Lady Vashj, Elune, Aviana

(All listed as "noteworthy" for their race) Magatha Grimtotem, Shandris Feathermoon, Valeera Sanguinara, Anveena Teague, Lady Liadrin, Modgud, Iridi, Greatmother Geyah, Moira Bronzebeard

(Thrown in because they deserved it or on a whim) Onyxia, Soridormi, Tyrygosa, Sintharia, Sindragosa, Eonar, The Earthmother, Queen Lana'thel, High Inquisitor Whitemane, Argent Confessor Paletress, High General Abbendis, Ishanah

Total # of women: 35
Abbendis, Ishanah, Whitemane, and Paletress could certainly be argued against inclusion, but I like them and they qualify as leaders, so there.

So, first observation:

Major Female Lore Characters: 14/81 (17%)
Just a measurement of women listed on the "major lore characters of past and present" guide, with Ursol and Ursoc counted as one. To be fair, Korialstrasz is included on this list and Onyxia omitted, so while there is room for argument, I would say this is generally accurate.

Class breakdowns:
All percentages are rounded. Of the 35 listed, 7/35 (20%) have indeterminable or unlisted classes. Most of them are dragons. Only one is officially a non-combatant.
In This Category: Alexstrasza, Anveena, Soridormi, Sintharia, Sindragosa, Onyxia, The Earthmother

7/35 (20%) are priests (or 25% of verifiable classes)
Tyrande, Elune, Iridi, Ishanah, Moira, Whitemane, and Paletress were all counted as priests.

7/35 (20%) are mages (or 25% of verifiable classes)
Aegwynn, Jaina, Azshara, Vashj, Modgud, Tyrygosa, Lana'thel were all counted as mages. Please note that Aviana is classified as a rogue-mage but I opted to put her in rogue rather than mage.

5/35 (14%) are hunters (or 18% of verifiable classes)
Alleria, Sylvanas, Vareesa, Shandris, and Maeiv were all counted as hunters. Note that Maeiv is technically a Warden, but eh, close as it comes.

3/35 (9%) are rogues (or 11% of verifiable classes)
That would be Garona, Valeera, and Aviana, who as mentioned above could also be counted as a mage.

2/35 (6%) are paladins (or 7% of verifiable classes)
Lady Liadrin and High General Abbendis. Note that neither of them are very good at being holy warriors of the light, but I will come back to that.

2/35 (6%) are shamans (or 7% of verifiable classes)
Magatha and Greatmother Geyah, the old women. If I were counting the Earthmother towards a class it would likely be Shaman.. she was awkward to list anyhow.

1/35 (3%) are druids (or 4% of verifiable classes)
Just Ysera here, and that's certainly up for argument.

Class Archetype Breakdowns

14/35 (40%) are healers
The Earthmother and Alexstrasza have been added to the tally here, along with Priests, Shamans, Druids and Paladins.

20/35 (57%) are ranged
Maiev and Ysera were not counted as ranged, though both Magatha and Geyeh were, as were the remainder of hunters, mages and priests.

... but only 9/35 (25%) can be verified as melee
The majority of them are dragons we've actually seen do some dragoning. Rogues, Paladins, and Maeiv were also counted as melee.

20/35 (57%) are casters
Regardless of their class - Alexstrasza and Ysera were both counted here for obvious reasons, though more ambiguous ones weren't.

Character Breakdowns

10/35 (29%) are evil
Azshara, Onyxia, Modgud, Vashj, Sintharia, Sindragosa, Magatha, Abbendis, Whitemane, and Lana'thel. You could certainly make some arguments about Sylvanas but until she's friendly to no one, well...

10/35 (29%) are virtuous/self-sacrificing/holy
We're getting into more dodgy territory here - what I'm angling at here is that sense of putting female characters on a pedestal - they are not only good people but utterly "pure." There are a few gods in here that skew the results, but even relevant to the male gods, the ladies are pretty long-suffering and pacifistic and etc. I have included Ysera, Alexstrasza, Elune, Vareesa, Ishanah, Anveena, Irina, Eonar, Earthmother, and much to my regret, Jaina. I'd say she's the least justifiable but I think she fits into the archetype I'm trying to capture.

9/35 (26%) have been "victims of their own pride" / obsession / hatred / other personal weakness
Usually with dire consequences for the rest of the world. An unfortunate pattern I've noticed: Women lore characters tend to foul things up royally for other people when they transgress, and typically do not get the Arthas Treatment should they be slowly descending into madness. What this often comes out meaning is that the women are simply not allowed to show negative character traits, or else they must be cured with long absences and male sons in the case of Aegwynn or the power of love in the case of Alleria. What this winds up meaning is that a lot of the women get slotted into one of the two categories above - virtuous or not, with little room in between. I do not know why women characters are apparently more prone to cataclysmic failure, personal weakness and Generally Awful Ideas, but the ones I've included: Sylvanas, Maiev, Aegwynn, Liadrin, Azshara, Alleria, Tyrande, Whitemane, Abbendis.

For perspective, those in none of the above categories:
Garona, Aviana, Soridormi, Tyrygosa, Paletress. Only one of these four is a major lore character with her own backstory, personality, goals, etc - she has also disappeared from canon recently, her most significant contribution of late being a child with a more important male lore character, conceived under dubious circumstances.

17/35 (49%) are important for proximity to/affect on male characters
To get the most neutral counting, I counted everyone - a lot of these characters have actually been active and done things in their own right, but can still be considered in terms of which male characters they are important to. I think I was brutal but fair on this count - Aegwynn, Tyrande, Iridi, Jaina, Maiev, Valeera, Vareesa, Modgud, Onyxia, Soridormi, Moira, Sintharia, Sindragosa, Abbendis, Tyrygosa, and Geyah were included. Alleria, having been introduced at the same time as Turalyon and Khadgar and being, therefore, on the same footing, was not.

25/35 (71%) use an Elven, Human, or Draenei model (or 25/31 with canonical humanoid forms)
Known to those who play WoW as "the pretty races." I would like to go back and quantify exactly how much armor they're all wearing, and I definitely would if I could, but I'm not sure of how exactly I'd manage that. Elune, Eonar, and Ysera were all counted towards this total.

5/35 (14%) have no human blood or human form
That's Moira, Modgud, Magatha, Geyah, and The Earthmother. All female dragons to date with the noteably awesome exception of Chromie have had elven or human forms, so all female dragons with no canonical forms were not counted towards this total. Garona is half draenei/human, and therefore was also not counted.

I am sure there are other things that I could count and I will probably come back to this later, but for right now I think this kind of paints a picture of what I'm looking at. I'd like to cherrypick some of the more important ladies here (i.e. those with actual dialogue) and pick it apart later. Suffice to say: I hate you, Blizzard.

Tags: feminism, overanalysis theatre, warcraft

  • Unpopular women, PS:T and Morrigan

    Ladies and stuffShoutout for The Unpopular Woman Love Post. I know some people in fandom would ask "why is this here, why do we need to love every…

  • Got the Cata trial.

    WoW is wasted on its players. But hey! Goblins are pretty rad!

  • Black Swan

    Reviews say it's great, I like Natalie Portman, I plan to see it, but I fully expect to find it disappointing considering it seems to be about the…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.

  • Unpopular women, PS:T and Morrigan

    Ladies and stuffShoutout for The Unpopular Woman Love Post. I know some people in fandom would ask "why is this here, why do we need to love every…

  • Got the Cata trial.

    WoW is wasted on its players. But hey! Goblins are pretty rad!

  • Black Swan

    Reviews say it's great, I like Natalie Portman, I plan to see it, but I fully expect to find it disappointing considering it seems to be about the…