WoW Classic: Alliance Races Explained

World of Warcraft Classic Alliance Races Explained

WoW Classic Alliance races are in an interesting position heading into Blizzard's nostalgic look back at one of the most important MMORPGs ever created. With the state of WoW today, players can basically assemble whichever combination of racial traits and classes that they desire - or, at the very least, there are so few restrictions now that it ultimately doesn't matter.

That isn't the case in WoW Classic, however. With an extremely limited pool of races to choose from and heavy restrictions placed on which races can choose specific classes, choice is both less varied and more important. This isn't Battle For Azeroth - racial abilities sometimes matter in WoW Classic, and some of them genuinely complement class choices to the point that they can make significant differences in both PvE and PvP performanceWoW Classic has bugs and all of its design choices ripped straight out of game design that's over a decade old, and that means players will need to re-familiarize themselves with what was acceptable back then.

Related: Some WoW Classic Realms Are Already Getting Too Full

In general, the WoW Classic Alliance races explained make a lot of sense to anyone who has looked into the base stats and passives that make up each choice. It's a lot of data to process, though, and many players simply want to jump back in. Here's a quick run-down of each race and what they offer future Alliance players.

WoW Classic Alliance Race: Dwarves

WoW Classic Dwarves

Dwarves are, predictably, a hardy, hard-drinking Alliance race in WoW Classic. They come from Khaz Modan in the Eastern Kingdoms, and are actually mutant versions of Earthen servants of the Titans who were afflicted by the Curse of Flesh, which changed them into mortals. Dwarves typically end up setting up camp in Ironforge, one of the most popular cities in Alliance lands.

Dwarf Racials

  • Find Treasure - Allows the player to sense nearby treasure, making it appear on the minimap.
  • Frost Resistance - Increases Frost Resistance by 10.
  • Gun Specialization - Guns skill increased by 5.
  • Stoneform - While active, grants immunity to Bleed, Poison, and Disease debuffs. In addition, Armor is increased by 10%. Lasts 8 seconds.

Of these options, Stoneform is the most tantalizing, as it's an excellent skill in PvP. Players looking for PvP specs will want to think hard about rolling a Dwarf as their WoW Classic Alliance race of choice.

Dwarf Classes

  • Hunter
  • Paladin
  • Priest - Dwarves get two class-specific racials as Priest: Fear Ward, which wards a friendly target against the next Fear effect used against them and lasts ten minutes; and Desperate Prayer, which instantly heels the caster.
  • Rogue
  • Warrior

Dwarves are one of two classes in the entirety of WoW Classic that can roll Paladin, an Alliance-specific class option.

Starting Dwarf Zone

Dwarves start WoW Classic in Dun Morogh, a mountainous region that is close to the radiation problem in Gnomeregan.

WoW Classic Alliance Race: Gnomes

WoW Classic Gnomes

Gnomes are perhaps the most famous WoW Classic race across both factions, notable for their presence in many early WoW memes. Gnomes are obsessed with technology and originally come from Gnomeregan, although radioactive fallout has caused that city to become inhospitable. Gnomes were also a product of the Curse of Flesh.

Gnome Racials

  • Arcane Resistance - Arcane Resistance increased.
  • Expansive Mind - Intelligence increased by 5%.
  • Engineering Specialization - Engineering skill increased by 15.
  • Escape Artist - Escape the effects of any movement speed reduction effect.

WoW Classic Gnome racials are actually pretty strong across the board. Expansive Mind makes Gnomes great choices as both Mage and Warlock, while Engineering bonuses matter more in WoW Classic thanks to the importance of that profession in both PvE and PvP content. Finally, Escape Artist is one of the better racial options in PvP play, allowing Gnome characters to circumvent many of the problematic movement reduction abilities that characterize WoW Classic PvP.

Gnome Classes

  • Mage
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Warrior

The big trade-off with Gnomes is that they're very restricted in terms of which classes they can choose. They also don't get any class-specific racials.

Starting Gnome Zone

Gnomes begin in Coldridge Valley, a smaller sub-area of Dun Morogh that also shares space with the Dwarven starting area.

WoW Classic Alliance Race: Humans

WoW Classic Human

Humans are, obviously, one of the more popular WoW Classic Alliance race choices. Humans were also a product of the Curse of Flesh although they are descendants of the Vrykul, and they are the founders of the Alliance. Many WoW Classic Alliance quests involve Human politics as a primary focus as a result, as they are the ruling race of the Alliance and tend to make the most important decisions - including the creation of gigantic armies like the Knights of the Silver Hand.

Human Racials

  • Diplomacy - Reputation gains increased by 10%.
  • Mace Specialization - Skill with Maces and Two-Handed Maces increased by 5.
  • Perception - Dramatically increases stealth detection for 20 seconds.
  • Sword Specialization - Skill with Swords and Two-Handed Swords increased by 5.
  • The Human Spirit - Spirit increased by 5%.

Clearly, Humans are pretty notable for having a lot of different directions to take their WoW Classic racial spread. Human Priests are naturally a good fit thanks to The Human Spirit providing bonus mana regen when coupled with Spiritual Guidance. Human Rogues do well with Maces and Swords. Diplomacy is wonderful for hitting Exalted with reputation grinds faster, which could be a huge draw for someone looking to collect rewards. Finally, Perception is an okay PvP racial, but it's generally below the top-tier of options and shouldn't be a draw toward the WoW Classic Alliance race.

Human Classes

  • Mage
  • Paladin
  • Priest - Humans have two Priest-specific racials: Desperate Prayer, which instantly heals the caster; and Feedback, which burns 105 Mana and deals 1 Shadow damage for each point of Mana burned when a character casts a spell against the Priest. Feedback lasts for 15 seconds when procced.
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Warrior

Humans have a diverse range of options for classes, another reason they're so popular as a choice among WoW Classic Alliance races. Humans are one of two races in the entirety of WoW Classic that can be Paladins.

Starting Human Zone

Humans begin in Elwynn Forest, perhaps the most famous starting zone in all of WoW Classic. Hogger resides here, and Elwynn Forest was also a central part of the infamous South Park episode that spoofed World of Warcraft. Players will also find the Defias, a gang that has one of the best early dungeons to play through revolve around them.

WoW Classic Alliance Race: Night Elves

WoW Classic Night Elf

Night Elves are an interesting race in the Alliance. Whereas the other races almost universally tend towards technological advancement and politics, the Night Elves are more interested in nature, cultivating a matriarchal culture. Night Elves have a natural affinity toward nature and magic, and are the only WoW Classic Alliance race that wasn't a recipient of the Curse of Flesh.

Night Elf Racials

  • Nature Resistance - Nature Resistance increased by 10.
  • Wisp Spirit - Transform into a wisp upon death, increasing movement speed by 50%.
  • Quickness - Dodge chance increased by 1%.
  • Shadowmeld - Activate to slip into the shadows, reducing the chance for enemies to detect the player's presence. Lasts until canceled or upon moving. Night Elf Rogues and Druids with Shadowmeld are more difficult to detect while stealthed or prowling.

Well, WoW Classic Alliance racials are not all built equally. Night Elves have literally zero racials that really benefit professions or stats in any meaningful way. That said, Wisp Spirit is a godsend in a game that can be very punishing towards players who die, and Shadowmeld isn't completely useless in PvP when coupled with Rogue or Druid play. That said, Night Elves shouldn't be anyone's first choice if their main priority is gaining a WoW Classic PvE or PvP edge.

Night Elf Classes

  • Druid - this is the only Alliance race that can create Druids.
  • Hunter
  • Priest - Night Elf Priests have two class-specific racials: Starshards, which causes 936 Arcane damage over 6 seconds, and Elune's Grace, which reduces ranged damage taken by 95 and increases chance to dodge by 10% for 15 seconds.
  • Rogue
  • Warrior

Starting Night Elf Zone

Night Elves begin their journey in Teldrassil, where they will be informed of the threat of the Emerald Nightmare. Eventually they'll make their way to Darnassus, a city built in the branches of Azeroth's world tree.

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