Why are the Legendary Daggers simply daggers?

(Alternate Fake Warcraft Thesis title: Established Combat Trends and the Declining Incentive for Weaponry-based Innovation.)

When I first heard about the new Legendary, I didn't think too much about the fact that they were daggers, other than for the first time it would be two weapons. I mean, Rogue weapon, daggers. Sure, makes sense.

But then, as more information came out and it was announced that even Combat Rogues (who usually use swords or axes, I think?) would be able to use them without penalty, it got me thinking.

Why daggers?

Don't get me wrong, there's something classic about a Rogue dual-wielding knives, and symmetry is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. But at the same time, it's also BORING. "What's that, DarkBladez22? You use two daggers? You and millions of other Rogues out there. Zero points for originality."

Betty White dual-wielding lightsabers? Double swords, how droll.

Think of how cool it would have been if the Legendary was a weapon combination you would normally never see, one that broke the "double weapon" cliche! Like sword/dagger, a pairing just as classic and dating back to traditional fantasy themes of pirates, swashbucklers, duelists, etc.

A hammer/axe combination would be interesting, and could easily be tied in to some exciting new Dwarf lore. Or hell, any fist weapon/non-fist weapon. Just having two different weapons creates an interesting asymmetry and very memorable image / character silhouette.

Even Gandalf didn't dual-wield conventionally!

These pairings would normally never be possible, due to how the Rogue specs favor or lean towards certain weapon types, and always "twin" weapons (as far as I know, anyway.) But since Blizzard is allowing the Legendary daggers to bypass these restrictions anyway, I think they could have broken the "dual same-weapon-type" mold and gotten really creative. There are, after all, so many fascinating and awesome possibilities!

Of course, if we're getting all crazy and innovative, why stop at the traditional weapon classes? We already know the Legendary weapons will be Rogue only...so why do they even have to be one of the already-existing weapon types? Why restrict the choices to daggers, swords, axes, maces or claws? (This argument would be more effective if Rogues couldn't already use like, every weapon ever.)


What if Blizzard made the new Legendaries something completely new - a type of weapon never seen before in WoW?

Axel from Kingdom Hearts 2, dual-wielding Chakrams.

This really isn't that weird. Due to the class restriction, Blizzard won't ever have to worry about balance issues, and they've already said that the daggers will be great no matter what weapons your spec is "supposed" to use. So they really had free reign to make the Legendary weapons whatever they wanted. Like...what about whips? A Rogue slashing away with dual glowing, cracking whips would be a sight to see. Or maybe a two-handed, but double-ended weapon like a kusari-gama? (A sickle and a heavy weight connected by a chain.)

A kusari-gama in the movie Ninja Assassin, possibly the best movie name ever.

Alternately, Blizzard could have also simply turned this task over to their creative team and let them come up with some kind of awe-inspiring fantasy creation or combination that screamed badass. Who cares if it never existed before, or if it's unrealistic - this is a world of MAGIC FLYING CITIES AND TIME-TRAVELING DRAGONS. And I think a little exaggeration and silliness, for the sake of Awesome, would be fine. These are LEGENDARIES, after all! They should be pulling out all the stops!

Date Masamune from Sengoku Basara. Yes, you see that right. SIX. FREAKING. SWORDS.


These new weapons wouldn't even require new animations or anything - they could just use already-existing animations that match fairly well. And before you say this is a silly or lazy idea, go look at the Warglaives and how they are wielded, and tell me those should be animated like normal swords.

Then again, why would it even have to be a traditional weapon? The Legendaries could easily have been something like the Rogue's bare hands, but engulfed in crackling black flame. Or monk-style wristbands/gloves that, when the Rogue attacked, materialized ghostly dragon spirits that snapped and bit at enemies. OR GAUNTLETS THAT TURNED INTO RIPPLING TENTACLES TO LASH OUT AT FOES oh my god oh my god

I have no context for this screenshot. I think it speaks for itself.

Anyway. My point is - Blizzard had a blank cheque on their hands. No matter what, it would have been Rogue only, and the weapon type was irrelevant. They could have made ANYTHING...and they made...double daggers. :\


16 Responses Subscribe to comments

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    So, is he an assasin of ninjas, or a ninja that is also an assassin?

    October 19, 2011 at 4:50 PM

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    They're daggers because of all melee, only rogues use daggers as primary weapons.

    October 19, 2011 at 4:52 PM

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    October 19, 2011 at 4:52 PM

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    Pliers, I know WHY they are daggers, but they could have been ANYTHING, that's what I meant. Like, double swords, double axes, a maul and a staff, anything. Other classes and what they use is irrelevant, since they're Rogue-only anyway.

    They had limitless potential on their hands to do something outside the box, which is why I feel daggers is a waste of this potential.

    October 19, 2011 at 4:54 PM

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    I am laughing my ass off right now. The Captain America image at the end was just the icing. Terrific comic value, Rades, but you make an excellent point as well. Blizzard could certainly be a little more creative with some of their weapon designs. Some of the BC era weapons were nuts.

    Six-freakin'-swords, indeed.

    October 19, 2011 at 5:01 PM

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    Combat rogues currently already use sword/axe/mace + dagger. If you want to use two different weapons then uh, there you go.

    October 19, 2011 at 5:10 PM

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    Rades, you should work for Blizzard..
    That's all I'm saying :D

    October 19, 2011 at 5:13 PM

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    You have out-done yourself this time, sir. I especially liked the Betty White pic. I also think this is a really interesting idea as far is its more serious applications go.

    October 19, 2011 at 6:20 PM

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    Sword-chucks yo.

    Even regular nunchucks would have been cool.

    But you know why they don't do this? Because everyone QQs hard enough that their class has never had a legendary/hasn't had one in aaages/should get one every expansion. Imagine how much harder people would qq if it was a new special weapon type for just this once. I super want to dual wield shield legendaries on my palatank though :O

    October 19, 2011 at 9:58 PM

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    As others mentioned, combat rogues already use sword/axe/mace/fist main-hand and dagger off-hand.

    But they definitely could have done something more unique with the weapon design (like they did with the glaives).

    All that said, coding the dagger MH to work for Sinister Strike is probably easier than worrying about Backstab, Ambush, Assassin's Resolve, etc.

    October 19, 2011 at 11:03 PM

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    Cool post, really like all the pictures. The first one looks like something sent from the Burning Legion.

    I think your right, Blizzard could have been more original.

    If anything, I never see first weapons in use. They could be a massive opportunity to input some real creativity in there design. They don't contribute to any specializations for rogues, or even in game, do thay? So how about making them work as any specialization the player wants?

    Wolverine style XD

    - Jamin

    October 20, 2011 at 1:22 AM

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    When they do the long-awaited tanking legendary, I want it to be double shields. Of course that leaves druids and DKs out of the picture yet again. Fooey.

    October 20, 2011 at 6:09 AM

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    I always enjoy your writing, Rades, so thanks again for keping up with your blog.

    As I (almost) never play a Rogue, I've not been following much of the discussion about these Legendary Daggers, but as usual, I was rewarded for reading to the end of your post- the idea of the spirit dragons forming around the fists upon entering combat is pure Win, imo.

    Someone needs to do that somewhere, in something, be it a game, book, movie, etc. So badly.

    October 20, 2011 at 6:16 AM

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    Mechanically, I understand why they went with daggers--a number of rogue abilities require daggers to function. That being said, they could have coded it as daggers and called it whatever they wanted (and made it look awesome to boot). Enjoyable post :)

    October 20, 2011 at 7:34 AM

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    @Mittenz - OMG, SWORDCHUCKS YES. I actually meant to include a picture of Michaelangelo using nunchucks but the other pictures were too funny.

    @Sean - Isn't it an awesome image? Now that would be something worthy of being called Legendary. :D

    October 20, 2011 at 9:16 AM

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    It reminds me about the fact my hunter still does not have his guns.

    It would be nice for a hunter to carry a couple of sidearms along with his ranged weapon.

    Any class should really be able to use any weapon. It is the stats on the weapon that should be the deciding factor.

    There is no reasonable explanation why a priest couldn't have a sword and a staff.

    I think the only reason they limit the options is to make less work on themselves.

    If everyone could use everything then they would need to have daggers designed for everyone as well otherwise they would hear people whining about how they can not find any good daggers with dodge on it for their tank.

    So instead of letting everyone use everything, they limit them to limit the work they need to do when making new gear.

    October 20, 2011 at 10:21 AM