There are many races to pick from, much more than you see here. Following are some relatively common races that are PC (“player character”) friendly – i.e., they’re not too crazy strong (e.g., vampire) or crazy evil (e.g., demon).


The baseline race in most fantasy stories. Humans are known for their versatility and their constant strive for innovation. They tend to have very varied cultures based on where they’re from, so you can feel free to adopt aspects of various real-life cultures into your character.


Dwarves are short and stout people with a gruff demeanour and a dedication to clan and tradition. They’re associated with strong warriors, expert craftsmen, and being able to drink anyone under the table.

Examples: Dwarves in Lord of the Rings, World of Warcraft, and Dragon Age


Elves are aloof and long-lived peoples of the forests. They live for centuries, so they tend to have a very long-term view of the world. They are a slender, graceful, and beautiful people, associated with high magic, skilled archery, and keen senses.

Examples: Elves in Lord of the Rings and Dragon Age, blood elves and night elves in World of Warcraft, altmer, bosmer, and dunmer in Elder Scrolls


Halflings, known as hobbits in some settings, are small, practical, kind, and curious. They tend to love good food, good company, and good atmospheres, and often live in burrows surrounding their farmstead communities. However, they can be quick-fingered thieves and radical opportunists, taking advantage of the fact that bigger races rarely pay them heed.

Examples: Hobbits in Lord of the Rings, kithkin in Magic: The Gathering, kender in Dragonlance


Dragonborn are descended from the dragons themselves, and their wyrm-like visage brings them both immediate awe and fear from the common people. They are proud and self-sufficient, and have a strong desire to uphold their clan’s honour. They have an inkling of dragon magic, and can breathe gouts of elemental energy.

Examples: Draconians in Dragonlance, dragonkin and drakonids in World of Warcraft


Gnomes are small and excitable forest sprites who delight in experiencing the world. They constantly search for new things with which to whet their appetite. For some this leads to travel, for others to invention, and others still to rampant kleptomania or academic obsession. They tend to have vibrantly coloured hair and eyes and are known for being eccentrics.

Examples: Asura in Guild Wars 2, gnomes in World of Warcraft


The result of a tryst between elves and humans, half-elves find themselves astride two worlds and not fully accepted in either. Elves consider them too flighty; humans consider them too aloof. They tend to make excellent ambassadors, able to fit in many situations, but many become wanderers, looking for their place in life.

Examples: Imagine what Aragorn and Arwen’s child would’ve been like in Lord of the Rings!


The result of a tryst between orcs and humans is rarely a pretty sight. Many humans deeply mistrust half-orcs, seeing them as nothing more than brutal savages like their orcish forebears. They tend to be physically powerful and not particularly attractive, with greenish, reddish, or greyish skin and jutting lower teeth.

Examples: Orcs in Lord of the Rings and World of Warcraft, orsimer in Elder Scrolls


Tieflings are loathed and unfortunate souls, their bodies corrupted by demons or devils. Many assume them to be as evil as their infernal blood, and while many tieflings live up to that stereotype fantastically, many still struggle against their inner darkness. Tieflings have varied appearances, but often feature unnatural hair colours, horns, tails, claws, hooves, and other bizarre mutations.


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