Advice for interacting with Drow player?


I have a player at my table wanting to be a good drow.

Basically she was born in a drow settlement, but by her early teens she was an outcast due to her naivety, and the lack of inherent cruelty and ambition common for Drow. She ran away, and was eventually taken in by a human family who accepted her due to her good nature. Just because this human family accepted her though, doesn't mean that everyone will.

My question is, how do I as the GM portray the hate and prejudice that Drow experience from other races, without seeming like I'm picking on the player?

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

There isn't a right answer. You have to know the player (and other players at the table) well enough to be able to walk the line between portraying fictional prejudice and offending real people.

My best bet is to talk about it with you group and discuss how you as a table want to deal with this issue and what would be too much.

If you have a player who is a Drow you should show them to the whole world because Dark Elves are real!

Oh you mean they want to play a Drow...meh. How you handle this depends on if you want to use the Golarion setting or not. Most people on Golarion have never seen a Drow before and wont know what they're seeing. But those that do recognize Drow will probably try to kill them on sight.

Have you asked why they want to play a drow? It may well be "to feel the hate and prejudice that drow experience with other races," in which case you shouldn't need to worry about them feeling picked on.

I assume that she has read Drizzt. You can do worse than copy that.

Essentially, drow are assumed to be evil demon-worshipping child-eating vicious murderous lying backstabbing treacherous psychopaths who wouldn't hesitate to hack babies from the womb and sacrifice them to Rovagug. So they're likely to attract the blame for a lot of miscellaneous misfortune such as little Emily's fever, the rust on the oat crop, wolf attacks on the sheep, the cow's sour milk, bad weather and any unsolved thefts.

And the same applies to the motley gang of murderhoboes that she's enchanted into protecting her.

I would recommend have her be born on the surface maybe her birth parents fled while pregnant due to moral issues. I have a hard time seeing a single female surviving as she will be seen as weak but if brought up on the surface that is different.

That will also fix the other issue. Drow instinctively believe they are 100 percent better then other races regardless of alignment. If is beaten into their heads from a young age. If she never experienced this it will justify her being good.

Look at Drizzt. In a way he believes he is better but he doesn’t push that view point he just blindly assumes until proven wrong then learns.

Now for your question: it depends how active drow are in your game. Are they the boogey men that parents tell their kids about or are they a known threat. Some things you can do is at stores either refuse service or triple tue price (I ran a game with a Half Orc player and the town was constantly raided by orcs so when he tried to buy he got the cold shoulder and charged an orc fee); I’d imagine if Drow are commonly known in the settlement she would be arrested on site unless someone Powerful spoke for her or flat out refused entry.

Thank you everyone for all the great advice. I'll talk with her and figure out boundaries, etc. And as for someone else's question, no it's not inspired by Drizzt. Shes never even heard of Drizzt. She just likes the aesthetic (and stats) of a drow, doesn't really like being evil, and likes to play characters that are purposefully and drastically different from standard stereotypes of their given race

That is fine if he isn’t inspiration but having her read the homeland trilogy will really help her understand the Drow superiority aspect that she will instinctively feel. They are my favorite race so I take their RP serious unless adopted and living in a non drow city,

Two things that a drow could do to get past prejudice without using a disguise:

1: Openly display a holy symbol that is widely accepted in the community. Very loudly proselytizing for a good and community accepted deity would make most people hesitate before treating them unfairly.

2: Take a trait that gives the character a reputation. Some AP have a trait that makes you a known local hero. Even if you are running your own campaign you could allow the player to take a trait that offers such a reputation.

And even if the player doesn't start with such a reputation, if several people in the party try and help her develop a reputation by spreading word of the parties deeds and playing up the drow's role she should be able to quickly gain fame and even the farmers in small villages and drunks in big cities will of herd her name and know she's a hero.

And if nobody ever talks about what the party does, then nobody knows right? People just know this band of scrubby looking guys came into town a few months ago. Then they disappear for a week and suddenly they come back with a lot of weapons to sell. They are wearing new armor. Throwing around a lot of gold. Nobody knows where it comes from but you hear rumors...and they have a drow with them.

There is within the Forgotten Realms campaign one Drow goddess who is not only not evil but good. Could use her perhaps as a template for a homebrew deity perhaps working it into the background of her adoptive parents. Maybe the priests of the temple helped shield the community she's in from drow raids/raiders. This would give her a relatively safe environment from the greater world at large and allow the prejudice to be experienced in game as she explores (i.e. adventures).

Forgotten Realms wikipedia wrote:
Eilistraee (L): Goddess of song, beauty, dance, swordwork, hunting, moonlight and good-aligned drow. Daughter of Lolth and Corellon; sister of Vhaeraun. Supposedly killed while possessing the body of her chosen (Qilué Veladorn) by Halisstra Melarn ("the Lady Penitent") wielding the Crescent Blade, while under the influence of Lolth in 1379 DR.[46] In Flamerule 1489 DR[47][48] during the event known as the Sundering, Eilistraee manages to return to life,[49][50] no longer enemy to her brother Vhaeraun[51] and is one of the deities with whom Mystra is currently sharing the Weave [52]

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