A closer look at WildStar’s Draken
The Draken of WildStar are not inclined to talk about themselves. It’s a simple matter of practicality; there’s a hunt to be undertaken, and talking doesn’t actually help with that. So today’s opportunity for fans to meet the Draken doesn’t have a whole lot about the bigger picture but does have a lengthy recounting of the individual Draken’s major achievements, which include hunting and killing an astonishing number of things.
That’s all that there is to them, right? Otherwise we would have heard more.
As it turned out in our interview with lead narrative designer Chad Moore, there’s quite a bit more to the Draken as a whole; they’re just disinclined to discuss it in any real detail. Thankfully, Moore is more concerned with lore than chasing down something and killing it, so he was able to shed more light on the Draken as a whole when you get past their love of the hunt.
Draken society is traditionally very patriarchal, with the race split into several clans that are ruled over by clan lords. One of the villages in the starting region of Deradune is a traditional Draken village, complete with a clan lord. Generally, these lords are male, although it’s not a hard and fast rule. The society is regimented by the strongest clans ruling over the weaker, with a defeated opponent accepting the loss and becoming a servant of the victor.
So it was when the Dominion moved in and defeated High Clanlord Zhur, a hierarchy that had been followed with respect ever since it was first put into place. However, as a whole, the Draken respect the Cassians rather than view humans as being somehow above them. The emperors are the true power behind the Dominion, and it is those not-quite-human rulers whom the Draken see as their true rulers.
A Draken respects the chain of command, but the humans of the Dominion are not to be deferred to beyond their ranks. At the same time, the Dominion allows the Draken to govern themselves and does not interfere with the clans or their methods of resolving disputes, so long as the Draken come to fight the wars that the Dominion wants.
If you want to be cynical about it, that’s a pretty sweet deal for the Dominion and not quite so much for the Draken. The Dominion gives the orders, and the Draken have no say in the matter except to do or die. This might seem to be a hint of the oppression that the faction implies, but it’s really more of a self-inflicted state than anything.
Obviously, the uppermost parts of Dominion government aren’t open to just everyone, but there’s nothing in the Dominion structure to prevent a Draken from entering the political spectrum and campaigning for the rights of his or her people. If the Draken wanted to make changes to the clan structure, he or she could do so.
The problem is that as a rule, the Draken don’t want to.
Draken culture places a high emphasis on hunting, killing, fighting, and the like. Political victories, not so much. The Dominion isn’t going to go in and force the planet to play nicely, and the Draken as a whole are disinclined to worry about politics, so they lack a voice that most of them don’t want anyway. Any inequalities on Mikros and points related are a simple result of semi-benign neglect by all those responsible.
Of course, some of you are already making plans for a Draken Esper with extensive knowledge of political theory, but others are waiting in anticipation of the game’s final races. Keep your eyes peeled for the last installment of this series later in the week, in which we take a closer look at the Mechari!