The clever, spunky, and oftentimes eccentric gnomes present a unique paradox among the civilized races of Azeroth. Brilliant inventors with an irrepressibly cheerful disposition, this race has suffered treachery, displacement, and near-genocide. It is their remarkable optimism in the face of such calamity that symbolizes the truly unshakable manner of the gnomes. Most gnomes live underground or in self-built metal shacks. The gnomes had a city, Gnomeregan, built into Ironforge Mountain, but invading troggs destroyed it and slaughtered its citizens. Many survivors now live with the Ironforge dwarves, a few traveling with their dwarven friends to Kalimdor. The gnomes are still reeling from the destruction of their home city and are loath to leave the safety of the dwarven tunnels.
They make and keep friends easily; other races often find disliking a gnome to be difficult. Gnomes are long-lived and take a fatherly approach to other races, particularly humans. Gnomes are gifted tinkers, and have a penchant for creating radical technology and innovative designs. They often work together with Ironforge dwarves, developing the blueprints and concepts from which the dwarf smiths draw their inspiration. Recent discoveries have also linked gnomes to the Titans, seemingly as their mechanically created information repositories and assistants given flesh. However, the gnomes seem to be apathetic about their origins, and seem to only focus on whatever insane contraption they’re currently working on.
Gnomes are small, slight, and nifty. They somewhat resemble dwarves, but are even shorter, not as stocky, and have large heads in proportion to their bodies. They have large noses and ruddy skin, their ears are large and rounded, and their hair color varies wildly, some even having pink or green hair. They have four fingers on each hand. They are often seen with goggles, tool belts and other items related to their technological inclinations.
Before the Gnomeregan incident, some gnomes (such Gnoarn) had earned a reputation for themselves by wearing an eccentric hairstyle known as a “gnomefro”. Thanks to their extremely small size, gnome warriors and rogues are vastly underestimated. Gnomes who specialize in melee are particularly hard to deal with due to their acrobatic fighting styles combined with their small size. Their small size can also be advantageous to people who like to explore; gnomes are the absolute shortest race, and can go to many places where height keeps other races from going. An average gnome is 3-4 feet tall and weighs 50-80 pounds. There is not much variation in size, even between genders. Males generally wear moustaches or other (naturally growing) well-manicured styles. Their eyes can be nearly any color of the spectrum.
– The incredible intellect of the gnome race is readily apparent to the casual observer. Many of the Alliance’s best arcanists, scientists and tinkers have been gnomes. Gain an extra 4 AP.
– A defining characteristic of gnome culture, gnome engineers have come up with creations such as the Deeprun Tram, which regularly makes life easier and (more or less) safer for the Alliance’s citizens. Able to whip up some useful items in situations of need.
– Gnomes take the same approach to the arcane sciences as they do to other technologies. Their (relative) carefulness and precision with magic has given them a slight Arcane Resistance. Arcane damage does half damage.
– Because of their small size, smaller weapons are far more comfortable and easy for them to use. Gain 10% chance to hit if using a dagger.
– Despite their short limbs and large heads, gnomes are remarkably nimble. They can keep pace with taller races, jump twice their height, and can quite easily slip out of both conventional and magical traps. Removes [immobilization] and [slow] effects. Only usable once per encounter.
- Death Knight – Despite their size, the Lich King was fully aware of the capabilities of gnomes and raised them every chance he got.
- Mage – In a community as eccentric as mages, for other mages to regard gnomish mages as outlandish is really a statement. Gnome mages are characterized by their bizarre and bold (some would say ‘whimsically suicidal’) probing into just how many things they can get their spells to do. The insatiable curiosity of gnomes is legendary, and all gnomes, of all walks of life, love to tinker. Gnomes as a race hold no general preference for any particular tree of magic or school of thought, but all are highly individualistic, and their idiosyncratic spells are evidence of this. Gnomes have the most creative spell repertoire of all the practicing races by far, and home-made gnomish spells either end up as fabulous successes or extremely dangerous failures.
- Priest – Gnome priests seem to focus heavily on the divine’s ability of healing, though more with the intention of practicing medicine rather than practicing religion. Their usage of it is actually very similar to first aid. As such most gnome priests refer to themselves as doctors and surgeons, though this not always true as High Cleric Alphus shows. On the flip side, shadow priest gnomes probe the dark side of the Light to see just what they are able to do with it.
- Rogue – Gnomish rogues are known to take advantage of their small stature to make excellent thieves, assassins, and anything else with a focus on subtlety. Their naturally expansive intellect tends to make them clever and quick witted, but what’s most attributed to their race is their engineering prowess. Gnome rogues often use their racial inclinations to make gadgets of malice to help aid in escape or taking enemies by surprise. Because Gnomeregan is overrun, the majority of them take their work from the dwarves, most notably Hulfdan Blackbeard in Ironforge.
- Warlock – Driven by their infinite curiosity, Gnomes have also taken up the mantle of the warlock. They are outcast by other gnomes, as demonic magic has been outlawed in Ironforge causing many of their number to train in Stormwind. It is safe to assume that gnomes were probably influenced by humans in the decision to study the dark arts. Even though gnomes are not as strong or agile as their human and orc counterparts, they have just as much dark potential.
- Warrior – Every time someone makes a comment about how no gnome warriors exist, that person runs the risk of being knee-capped out of nowhere. These gnomes are the kind who deny that they are small; every other race is just too big. The gnomes that become warriors are fierce, but are often placed in defensive positions, guarding either artillery or battle magi. Being small is an advantage, making warrior gnomes difficult targets in the midst of melee.
For more in-depth reference: gnomes.