All crests

The Core Races Edit

The Warcraft world’s races are diverse and rich. Each race has a role in the world, and their deeds resonate through the ages. Members of each race view each other with assumptions formed by past conflicts and alliances. Warcraft’s history is troubled and epic, and every aspect influences the races, their beliefs and their roles.

This chapter describes Ironforge dwarves, high elves,night elves, gnomes, goblins, humans, orcs, tauren, jungle trolls and the undead Forsaken. These races are not the only races in the Warcraft world, but they are the most dominant. Upcoming Supplements will describe other PC races, such as Wildhammer dwarves, blood elves, furbolg, half-elves, half-orcs, naga and pandaren. In addition, the Manual of Monsters is full of creatures of all sorts, many of them suitable for heroes. When a race is detailed in more than one source, the descriptions in this book take precedence.

Dwarf, Ironforge Edit

Elf, High Edit

Elf, Night Edit

Gnome Edit

Goblin Edit

Human Edit

Orc Edit

Tauren Edit

Troll, Jungle Edit

Undead, Forsaken Edit

Racial Descriptions: Each race is presented in the following format: Edit


Description: General details on the race as a whole, focusing on its society and culture.

Appearance: Details of the race’s size, build, complexion and other distinguishing physical features. 

Region: The geographical areas where members of the race dwell. 


on: The affiliation to which the race belongs. Common affiliations are Alliance and Horde, but some races may belong to other affiliations or may be Independent. This section also includes notes on how the race gets along, or doesn’t, with other races. 

Faith: An explanation of the race’s general approach to faith and religion. 

Names: A description of the race’s general naming practices, including sample names. 

Racial Traits: The race’s game mechanics and abilities. Again, where these differ from traits found in other sources, those in this book trump all others. Some races can take racial levels (see below); this ability is indicated in the racial traits section.  

Racial Levels: Some races tend to be more powerful than others. The average tauren, for example, is much stronger than the average human and generally just better overall. This disparity creates a problem in game balance. The first edition of the Warcraft RPG incorporated level adjustments to address this issue, but no more. This edition uses racial levels instead. No race includes a level adjustment. Racial levels allow members of some powerful races to take levels in a special class — their racial class. A tauren can take levels in the tauren racial class, and a night elf can take levels in the night elf racial class. This ability represents members of these races becoming more in tune with their natural spirits, developing their inner potentials, focusing on their traditions and attaining the ancestral powers of their cultures and societies. Not all members of such a race take a level (or two or three) in their racial class, but many do. Racial classes work like normal classes in most respects: they grant Hit Dice, skill points, increase the hero’s total character level, and the like. Characters never suffer experience point penalties for having levels in a racial class (see Chapter 3: Classes, “Multiclass Characters”). Heroes do not need to take levels in other classes before taking levels in racial classes; thus, Forsaken, high elf, Ironforge dwarf, jungle troll, night elf, orc and tauren heroes all have the opportunity to start with a racial level. Obviously, characters cannot take levels in a race to which they do not belong. Even a character polymorphed into a member of another race cannot take racial levels in her “new” race; racial classes represent millennia of history, culture and legacy that infuse a new member of the race at birth and reverberate within her consciousness forever.