Sub-race names & templates tied to the new customization options

Many people are pointing out that some allied races feel lacking in terms of customization. Others are saying that whatever additional customization we are given for the core races in Shadowlands, it won’t be as cool as getting a proper allied race and we are just going to be the same Bronzebeard dwarves and Darkspear trolls as always.

So here’s hope Blizzard can possibly consider the addition of some kind of optional templates within the new character customization screen.

The assumption is that just the same way they can make certain visual options available to only certain classes and certain customization features depend on one another, they could possibly define a number of customization sub-sets while still leaving all of the options available for the main default race.

It would go like:

Click 1: Choose your faction

  • Alliance
  • Horde

Click 2: Choose your race

  • Human
  • Dwarf
  • Night Elf
  • Gnome
  • Draenei
  • Worgen
  • Pandaren

Click 3: Choose your class

Click 4: Customize!

  • On the left: Templates (defaulted to main race with all features available)
  • On the right: Customization (as now)

Example templates for Dwarves:

  • Bronzebeard (default)
  • Wildhammer
  • Dark Iron (?)

Example templates for Trolls:

  • Jungle Troll (default)
  • Sand Troll
  • Forest Troll
  • Dark Troll
  • Ice Troll
  • Zandalari (?)

Customization screen mock-ups by Moira (thanks!)

Wildhammer and Dark Iron Dwarves:

Forest and Ice Trolls:

’Dark Ranger’ template for Night and Blood Elves:

’High Elf’ template for Blood and Void Elves:

Obviously we’d also still have the RANDOMIZE button, which would behave differently if an optional template is selected.

So, like, do you want a real quick way to look like a Wildhammer Dwarf?
Select the Wildhammer template in the left, hit randomize and BOOM there ya go.

I know this is rather unlikely to happen for Shadowlands at this stage, but it looks awesome and it would be a great QOL feature which would help broaden and deepen Lore knowledge.

Additionally (but not necessarily) the templates could also be tied to alternate sub-race names or even specific/different racial traits.

The reasoning being, unless a number of the current ‘allied races’ are meant to eventually be re-absorbed by the core races as part of their customization, people are likely to keep asking for ‘proper allied races’ for their favorite sub-race.

Both merging the customization back into the main race as a template or adding alternate demonyms for the extra tribes/clans/subraces connected to a template would solve this issue. Alternatively, an alternate demonym and/or racial skill could be picked as an option when having selected certain specific visuals (tattoos for Dwarves, skin colors for Trolls, etc).

Which brings the logical question…

What sort of templates would YOU like to get for your race?

Templates Q&A: see here

P.S. There was some speculation about this from a dataminer on Twitter.
So while I realize this is most likely wishful thinking… PLEASE MAKE IT REAL…?

And thanks for reading. :yellow_heart:


As I already pointed out elsewhere, I must agree that this would be a very pleasant and welcome Quality of Life feature.

(And actually, it could lead towards the placement of at least some of the ‘proper’ allied races with less customization options within the base race screen, which I feel would create less visual clutter)

As an option, of course. Enforcing templates when it comes to player customization would be utterly wrong (and against Blizzard’s will to bring more power to the player).

Biggest problem being, I am not sure this could be applied to all races?

And what if I start off my toon as a Bronzebeard and later want to turn into a Wildhammer?
Would that be feasible?


Amani trolls - those shouldn’t be available. Also other villain races. Otherwise we will be out of bad people.


I really like the idea. It’s like Allied Races but more simple.


Admittedly I am totally not an expert of Trolls… so up to Blizzard to define what tribes they should be exactly. That was just an example. :slight_smile:

My point being, in the interview with T&E Danuser literally explained their position bringing up the following example:

“if we give Trolls different skin options that look like other troll tribes besides Darkspears, does that mean we need to make a new starting experiences for them as well…?”

And the answer was no - since the drain on the resources to add new starting areas would be too huge, they have rather decided to implement those options through the customization of the base races, so not to limit the players due to storyline and resource concerns.

And yet the game community feels this is not sufficient to allow RP of another clan/tribe unless the NPCs refer to the player with another word.

Then those races won’t have templates… for now.

As it would just be an OPTIONAL secondary choice sitting within the last customization screen, I do not see the problem with some races having one, more, or none.

Just like some races can customize ears, others get earrings, and so on.


Intriguing concept.

Gotta wonder what sub-races would make sense for a Blood Elf.

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The problem in this case would be the RP aspect.

From what I gathered, even through this is not supported by cannon some players play as Sargeras loyalists or world end followers.

Having the Amani customization wouldn’t necessarily mean the Amani joined the Horde. It could easily be RP as someone that joined when the Zandalari joined the Horde, but still wants the BEs out of their lands and hates the Horde.

I don’t RP, so I don’t know if the community would accept this stance, but I read a lot of threads so far to conclude if players can pretend to play someone that wants Greymaine or Tyrande instead of the official Anduin as leader or hate on the council of the Horde and play as Sylvanas/Garrosh loyalists, I think this could be accepted as well.



Well it’s blizz game so they can do whatever they want. Never liked they introduced zandalari in horde. They were cool as alone tribe and hunting for powers.

Some people want Eredar too - it’s like c’mon seriously?

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Aswell as for gnomes.
I know there are jungle gnomes and with a tbc item there were also some voodoo gnomes. But they looked like normal gnomes, only differences were the clothes and lack of ingenuity


Well, since we are getting black Blood Elves, so… Why not go all the way and also get us some Eredar?

Well nothing wrong with it - if people wants it then who m I saying “no u can’t have it”
Blizz already crossed lore breaking line many times so for me - bring it on whatever.

I don’t even mind fighting with lightsaber and machine guns at this point lol.


You being serious? First you sound like you are not a fan of Zandalari being an Allied Race, and baffled that people want Eredar as a playable option.
But then you are like “It is perfectly cool that people want this, I am even up for lightsabers and machineguns!” soon as I mention Black Elves.

Talk about a double standard.

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I think everyone can describe by now a moment when they felt Blizzard broke the lore.
For me, it was faction wars. Every one of them. :unamused:

Always far fetched always falling on bad Horde vs Alliance.
Instead of a simple disagreements/old hatreds that turned in to a border conflict, with both factions withdrawing, with a nose bleed, for score settle in a better opportunity.


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Yeah Damm serious and there is no double standard here.

What happens in game is not up to us.
In 1st post I said about how I feel about introducing different races.

2nd post how I feel about game in current state.

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I love my lightsabers!


e.g. of Templates for Blood Elves

  • none (default)
  • Illidari (DH only)

I can’t seem to decide whether groups like Farstriders and Magisters would belong there.

My point being, different dwarf clans and troll tribes seem to have a much broader customization range?

Possibly, would not really know. But as I was saying, I do not think all races would necessarily require to have such templates. They simply could be used as an option when and where it makes sense.


Aye, got it now.

Nothing against this from me, really. I take it would be handy to have for the troll players (and dwarves ofc).


The starting experience in SL is generic enough to cover the sub races without issue.

Just ensure that NPCs use a general term. They call you “Dwarf” not “Bronzebeard Dwarf” after all. Just have to ensure all quests that refer to specific heritage and associate it with you are changed.

This is much easier than changing monikers every time you visit the barber. I don’t imagine there are a huge amount of quests outside of the starting experience that refer to specific heritages and associate it with you the player. The best other example is heritage armours. Simply add extra questline job done.

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Reading back my first and second comments, I have to admit I sound a bit… Silly. I guess that is what a casualty of the identification powerstruggle sounds like. So… My bad.

I guess I was just a little confused why you sounded like you didn’t like the idea of Eredar (Because let’s be honest, it would be a bit bizarre having red Draenei run around), but seem to give a pass for another fairly out-of-place-looking customization, and then even up the antee with lightsabers and machineguns.

By the way, I still don’t understand why or what the templates would be for. That instead of a broad Dwarf option, you would get sub-sections for specific Dwarf and then get limited options based on that?
How would that make sense exactly?