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- This article is about the playable race of pandaren. For more information on the pandaren race in general, see pandaren.
The pandaren (pronounced /pænˈdɑɹən/) are a playable race added in World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria. They are available to both the Alliance and the Horde, the first (and at present, only) race in World of Warcraft to have this option. Playable classes are monk, hunter, mage, priest, rogue, shaman, and warrior.
The starting zone is the Wandering Isle, a giant turtle that wanders Azeroth's oceans. At the end of the island's questline (approximately at level 10), players will be able to choose which faction (Alliance or Horde) to join, and will not be able to change afterward using in-game means.
- You are a pandaren born and raised on the mysterious Wandering Isle. While many of your fellow pandaren prefer a tranquil life, the lure of adventure burns in your blood. Recently, the Wandering Isle has begun erratically weaving about the world's oceans. The air grows cold and your island home is spiraling toward disaster. As one of the most promising of students at Master Shang's monastery, you may just be the salvation for your people, but first you must complete your training.
Couched in myth and legend, rarely seen and even more rarely understood, the enigmatic pandaren have long been a mystery to the other races of Azeroth. The noble history of the pandaren people stretches back thousands of years, well before the empires of man and before even the sundering of the world.
Denizens of a wondrous and fertile land, the pandaren once labored under the oppressive thumb of a monstrous race of ancient warlords known as the mogu. Through tenacity, diplomacy, and a unique form of unarmed combat, the pandaren staged a successful revolution that deposed the mogu and established a pandaren empire that would prosper for thousands of years. During the bleak days that preceded the sundering of the world, when demons flooded onto Azeroth and threw the entirety of the mortal realm into jeopardy, the last Emperor of the pandaren discovered a way to protect his land from the devastation. His deal with fate shrouded his land within an impenetrable mist for ten thousand years, but the nature of his transaction has left Pandaria haunted ever since...
It is the rare pandaren indeed who sought a way beyond the mist. Generations ago, pandaren explorers began to gather on the back of a giant turtle: Shen-zin Su. The great sea turtle roamed Azeroth's oceans, perhaps the only contact pandaren had with the outside world. Eventually, they too lost contact with their mist-shrouded homeland. Players who choose to create a pandaren character will start their journey on the back of Shen-zin Su. When the great turtle is threatened, and their whole wandering homeland is in jeopardy of being swallowed by the sea, players will have to accelerate their training and spring into action.
During their time on the turtle, players will first encounter the Alliance and Horde. Before they are finished, they'll have to make the most important decision of their lives: Which of the two factions will they support as they venture out to heal a world broken by the Cataclysm and threatened by a global war?
Joining the Alliance
The pandaren who join the Grand Alliance are practitioners of the path of Tushui, living a venerable life through meditation, rigorous training, and moral conviction, and doing what is right above all else. Aysa Cloudsinger is their representative. This faction is called Tushui Pandaren.
Joining the Horde
The pandaren of the Horde are followers of the philosophy of Huojin. More direct than the contemplative philosophy of Tushui, adherents of Huojin believe that inaction is the greatest injustice and that it is honorable to defend one's homes and families regardless of cost. Their emissary is Ji Firepaw. This faction is called Huojin Pandaren.
The Pandaren's mount of choice are Dragon Turtles as their primary ground mount.
- Main article: Wandering Isle storyline
When starting a pandaren character, everyone starts out in the same outfit and will have no weapons, however, depending on the class will start with a different type of food that for the first time has stats. Players start at the Shang Xi Training Grounds on the Wandering Isle where a quest will automatically appear for you to speak with Master Shang Xi. Players gain their first weapon from the nearby weapon racks after Shang Xi tells them to.
The first twelve to thirteen levels are played on the Wandering Isle, where you experience the aftermath of the Shattering and deal with the native creatures that have become agitated by changes on the land. Players are requested to speak with Shen-zin Su, but to do so they must gather the elemental spirits that have recently gone missing. After proving yourself several times, not only to your master, but also the spirits, players finally speak to Shen-zin Su and discover what pains him. This pain ends up a crashed gunship in an area pandaren do not venture. After aiding the Horde survivors and then the Alliance crew, soon after they are asked to choose a path. Once the choice is made they are sent via hot air balloon to the capital city of the faction they chose.
The following can be triggered with the /silly command.
- Gotta store up some fat for the winter! I don't hibernate or nothin', I just like havin' it around.
- Hey! You look like you've lost some weight! ... That's terrible. Have a dumpling.
- Mighty is the wind, but you can still break it. Meditate on this.
- Yeah... Mhm. We're gonna need a bigger turtle. (Jaws reference.)
- It is said: Elephants tusks will not grow from a dog's mouth. BUT, you can get em in there, you know, a little glue, some tape... It's fine. Maybe a rubber band.
- It is said: To err is human... *laughs* Stupid humans...
- Teach a man to fish, and he is fed for a day, uh no, uh.. He is fed, I.. I messed it up, but we just make this stuff up anyway.
- How much deeper would the ocean be without sponges? Meditate on this.
- It is said: Everywhere is in walking distance, if you have the time. (Possible reference to a joke by Steven Wright.)
- It is said: If you cannot beat them, join them. I say, if you cannot beat them, beat them. Because they will be expecting you to join them, so you will have the element of surprise.
- Let's see, uh, forward, down, forward, PUNCH! No... Down, up, kick..? (Reference to the character Chun Li from the Street Fighter video games, of whom the female pandaren is reminiscent. The button combinations result in special attacks.)
- I'm doing great! I could stand to gain a few pounds, sure, but who doesn't?
- Oh, I have REALLY got to start waxing.
- Of course we have thumbs! Look!
- All these new cultures are so confusing! Today, someone complimented me on my 'padonkadunk.' What is that? Elvish? (Otherwise know as a badunkadunk.)
- I am a leaf in the wind... But like a big, tough leaf. With swords and magic and stuff.
- I am mostly vegetarian. I only eat plants. And animals that eat plants.
- If you shoot for the stars and hit the moon, do not be ashamed, for you have aspired to greatness.... And the moon had it coming.
- So I was talking to this Tauren the other day.. No, I mean a Worgen.. I.. No.. Wait, which one's a cow and which one's a dog? Ugh! All the talking animals are STUPID! (Reference to people complaining about talking pandas in WoW)
- As your leader, I encourage you from time to time, and always in a respectful manner, to question my logic. I promise you, here and now, no subject will ever be taboo. Except of course, the subject that was JUST under discussion.
- The price you pay for bringing up my Pandaren heritage as a negative is... I collect your head! Now, if ANY ONE OF YOU HAS ANYTHING ELSE TO SAY, NOW IS THE TIME! (Both this line and the line above are Kill Bill references, presumed removed.)
Pandaren seen during BlizzCon
A pandaren farm with a sneaky verming
An early concept for a pandaren mount. "It's too awesome, [and would] probably blow up your computer".
The pandaren do not have racial leaders, instead they have representatives from the Horde and Alliance.
Before choosing their faction (Alliance or Horde), pandaren player characters are subject to many restrictions that, in effect, make them their own third neutral faction:
- They cannot send or receive mail.
- They cannot communicate through any means with any players except other still-neutral pandaren. RealID and BattleTag communication is exempt from this restriction.
- They cannot join parties, except with other still-neutral pandaren.
- They cannot join guilds.
- They cannot be boosted to level 80 through the Scroll of Resurrection program.
- They cannot be summoned out of the Wandering Isle by a , Meeting Stone, or the ability. The same is true for all other races/classes with instanced starting areas, namely worgen, goblins and death knights.
- Pandaren are the only race to start with different types of food that changes between classes created and has increased stats (STR, AGI, and INT) with that food.
- Pandaren are the first true neutral playable race, in which players do not choose a faction while in the character screen. They'll choose when leaving the Wandering Isle, which is around level 10.
- Pandaren are the only playable race in World of Warcraft not able to be death knights, because of their separation from the outside world.
- The emote
/peonis based on the Kowtow.
- The pandaren beds are circular in design "for comfort for when they hibernate", however, at the time it was done this way, Prop Art Lead Eric Browning didn't realize that pandas do not hibernate.
- The artists created an actual working language that is actually used for the scrolls, books, and other pandaren material. These objects can be translated, although most translations will just be a jumble of words. See Pandaren (language) for the language script.
- The male are voiced by Matthew Yang King.
- The female are voiced by Hira Ambrosino.
- ^ a b Blizzard Entertianment 2011-10-21. Meet the Pandaren!. Retrieved on 2011-10-27.
- ^ a b Mists of Pandaria Press Tour. MMO-Champion (2012-03-19). Retrieved on 2012-03-19.
- ^ Nethaera 2012-05-23. Pandaren Mount Revealed: Dragon Turtle. Archived from the original on 2012-05-23.
- ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SM4ApyBFvZM&t=549
- ^ BlizzCon 2011: World of Warcraft Lore and Story Panel
- ^ a b BlizzCon 2011: World of Warcraft Art Panel