WoW Classic Race Overview

WoW Classic Race Overview

The world of Azeroth is populated by distinct races of creatures with unique identities and abilities. You’ll need to choose a race when creating your character. Traits determined by race include appearance and personal history, as well as some additional modifiers to actions.

Certain combinations of race and class are more favorable for specific types of gameplay, so bear that in mind as you make your selection. In World of Warcraft Classic there are eight choices, split by political faction. Each race acts in cooperation with either the Grand Alliance, or the Horde, though to varying degrees of loyalty.

Alliance Races


wow classic dwarvesThe stout, bearded dwarvish race is native to Khaz Modan and dwells largely around the capital Ironforge, in snow-covered Dun Morogh, where both dwarves and gnomes begin their quests. The dwarves have scattered to many areas of the map seeking clues to their historical link to the Titans, and can also be found in large numbers at the human capital of Stormwind, owing partly to centuries of warm relations between the two races. Powerful and compact, dwarves are highly versatile, and lend themselves to activities involving brute toughness. Available classes are Hunter, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, and Warrior. Mounted dwarves travel astride rams native to Dun Morogh.

Dwarf Racial Abilities

Class-Specific Racial Abilities: Priest


wow classic gnomesA race of Da Vinci-esque inventors shares Ironforge with the Dwarves in Dun Morogh, since the destruction of Gnomeregan, the historic Gnomish capital. Gnomes begin adventuring in nearby Coldridge Valley, speaking Gnomish and Common. Even smaller in size than their dwarf “cousins,” the gnomes’ knack for technology is manifested by the mechanostriders for purchase in Dun Morogh to use as mounts—one way to make up for their particularly small stature. Gnomes do well with class selections that can highlight their natural intelligence. Long-lived and warmhearted, the Gnomes have a generally positive relationship with Humans and Alliance races in general.

Gnome Racial Abilities


wow classic humansMankind’s comparatively short lifespan has not prevented their spread across the face of Azeroth. They are the most common, and arguably the most versatile units within the Alliance. Humans commence their journey in the luxuriant undergrowth of the Elwynn Forest in the Eastern Kingdoms. In the heart of the forest valley sits the capital city Stormwind, rebuilt on its own ruins after utter destruction in the First War. Horses that roam the area are the humans’ mount unit. Silver-tongued and skilled in arts of interaction, humans are compatible with Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Warlock, and Warrior classes.

Human Racial Abilities

Class Specific Racial Abilities: Priest

  • Desperate Prayer: heals priest instantly
  • Feedback: an anti-magic field surrounds the human, causing the attacker to lose 105 Mana, dealing 1 Shadow Damage per Mana lost (15 seconds)

Night Elf

wow classic nightelvesOn an island within a serene lake in the high mountains of Kalimdor, in a tree blessed by dragons, sits Darnassus, the capital city of the night elves. Willowy and fair, they use large sabre cats for mounted transportation. Since the fallout of the Great Sundering, night elves have become naturalists who strive for cooperation with their surroundings, and are the only Alliance race which can play Druid. This ancient race of tall, wispy, forest-dwellers worships Elune, the moon goddess, and have a penchant for secrecy and evasion. Druid, hunter, priest, rogue, and warrier are all available classes.

Night Elf Racial Abilities

Class-Specific Racial Abilities: Priest

Horde Races


wow classic orcsLarge, brutish bodies and a natural mistrust of the unseen are foundational orcish tendencies which can make them powerful units if used correctly. Happiness, to an Orc, is a well-worn axe. Driven out of Draenor and into the madness of war by the Burning Legion’s magic, the orcs have attempted to return to their shamanistic traditions since settling in Durotar. There, the orcs built the bespoke city of Orgrimmar, and there the orcish legacy of dedication to tradition has resumed. Trusty wolf mounts are available around the city. Trust in heritage, customs, and in the physical, visible realm makes orcs a good selection for classes that draw on the benefits of their size and power. Orcs can play as Hunter, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, and Warrior.

Orc Racial Abilities

  • Axe Specialization: +5 to Axe and Two-Handed Axe Skill
  • Blood Fury: +25% to melee attack; -50% healing effects on user (25 seconds)
  • Command: +5% damage from Hunter and Warlock pets
  • Hardiness: +25% chance of resisting effects of Stun


wow classic taurenIn the West, in Kalimdor, the peaceful tauren worship the Earth Mother as they have for generations. Once fully nomadic, the tribes that had been scattered across the Barrens plains drew together to repel the centaurs from their grassy homeland. The resulting stronghold of Thunder Bluff, balanced above Mulgore on a series of cliffs, and connected by rope bridges, remains today as their capital city. The bulky tauren require kodo, beautiful giant lizard-creatures to serve as mounts. These are endemic to the area and available for purchase. Tauren are more specialized in their abilities, and excel in classes that showcase their strength and naturalistic abilities. Classes for tauren include Druid, Hunter, Shaman, and Warrior.

Tauren Racial Abilities

  • Herbalism: +15 to Herbalism skill
  • Endurance: +5% to overall Health
  • Nature Resistance: +10 to Nature Resistance
  • War Stomp: stuns ≤ 5 enemies within about 25 feet (2 seconds)


wow classic trollsThe migration of the Darkspear Tribe of trolls from the Echo Isles to the sun-baked claypan of Durotar was long and violent, leaving them more superstitious and insular than other tribes and other races found on Azeroth. Darkspear Tribe’s commitment to the Horde is by far the strongest of the trolls. They have overcome their distaste for other races to befriend the tauren who also inhabit the region. A level of diplomacy is required also for the orcs, with whom trolls share a capital at Orgrimmar. Trolls begin questing in the nearby Valley of Trials, and can acquire a fast raptor type mount in the southern area of the region. Visible even at distance against the red earth, their blue or green skin and notable tusks mark units distinctively as trolls. This, as well as their large dimensions and indisputable toughness, suits them to classes that maximize their strength and size. Available classes: Hunter, Mage, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior.

Troll Racial Abilities

  • Beast Slaying: Damage dealt versus Beasts increased by 5%.
  • Berserking: Increases your casting and attack speed by 10% to 30%. At full health the speed increase is 10% with a greater effect up to 30% if you are badly hurt when you activate Berserking. Lasts 10 sec.
  • Bow Specialization: Skill with Bow Weapons increased by 5.
  • Regeneration: Health regeneration rate increased by 10%. 10% of total Health regeneration may continue during combat.
  • Throwing Specialization: Skill with Throwing Weapons increased by 5.

Class Specific Racial Abilities: Priest

  • Hex of Weakness: weakens damage caused by target; slows healing spells on them (2 minutes)
  • Shadowguard: creates a shadow buff around the priest, dealing 26.7% of the spell’s power as shadow damage to an attacker. Affects attacker every 2-3 seconds (10 minutes)


wow classic undeadOf the races who fell victim to the plague of the Lich King, those human undead who remain are called the Forsaken. They cling to existence in the catacombs beneath the ruins of the once-capital Lordareon, in a sprawling series of tunnels known as the Undercity. Undead start adventuring at Deathknell, in the Tirisfal Glades around the forsaken city. Skeletal warhorse mounts can be purchased in the vicinity. Feeling very little in the way of emotion, loyalty to the Horde, or really anything at all, the Undead know that the enemy of their enemy is their friend, and seek to destroy the Lich King by any means necessary. Undead can play as Mage, Priest, Rogue, Warlock, or Warrior Class.

Undead Racial Abilities

Class Specific Racial Abilities: Priest

  • Touch of Weakness: lessens damage from attacker by 20 (2 minutes) and deals 10.7% of total spell power as Shadow damage during the next melee attack on Priest.
  • Devouring Plague: 904 Shadow Damage, delivered during 24 second spell, which uses that damage to heal the casting priest


About the Author


If I'm not working or spending time with the family I'm probably gaming. Some of my favorite recent games I've played are Far Cry 5, World of Warcraft Classic, and 7 Days to Die.
Notify of

1 Comment
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
2 years ago

These are well articulated and neat through

Scroll to Top