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This article is about the gnomes' lore. For the Gnomeregan playable race, see Gnome (playable). For the language, see Gnomish (language). For the Mechagon gnomes, see Mechagon mechagnome.
Muck Plumber HS
Faction/Affiliation Gnomeregan, Alliance, Independent, Kirin Tor, Argent Crusade, Rustbolt Resistance
Arcforged, Alliance of Lordaeron
Character classes

WoW Icon update Death knight, Hunter, Mage, Monk, Priest, Rogue, Warlock, Warrior
Ace, Assassin, Archmage, Sorcerer, Bombardier, Commoner, Engineer, Sapper, Techno mage, Tinker
WC2BnE-logo Flying machine, Inventor

Icon-RPG Dead shot, Gunman, Necromancer, Potion doc, Steam warrior
Racial capital Alliance Gnomeregan (reconquering in process)
Alliance Mechagon City
Racial leader(s) Alliance IconSmall Mekkatorque King Gelbin Mekkatorque
  Formerly Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male IconSmall KingMechagon King Mechagon †
Racial mount IconSmall Mechanostrider Mechanostrider
Homeworld Azeroth
Area(s) Eastern Kingdoms; Mechagon Island
Language(s) Gnomish, Dwarven, Common, Goblin, Thalassian

The gnomes (collectively referred to as gnomanity,[1] gnomekind[2] or gnomefolk)[3] are a race of diminutive and highly intelligent humanoids, known for their mastery of technology. They were originally descended from mechagnomes, metallic titan-forged, who were afflicted with the Curse of Flesh. The early gnomes eventually found their way to Khaz Modan, where they founded the capital of Gnomeregan and became allies with their nearby dwarven cousins. For years the gnomes were based in Gnomeregan, providing technological support to the Alliance during the Second War, until a trogg invasion and treachery from within irradiated Gnomeregan and killed as much as eighty percent of the gnomish population. The gnomes were forced into exile in Tinker Town in the dwarven capital of Ironforge, until, following the Cataclysm, the gnomes launched a partially successful recapture of Gnomeregan, and are now based in New Tinkertown. After reconciling with the long-isolated mechagnomes of Mechagon Island, Gelbin Mekkatorque became the king of all gnomes, their people finally reunited after centuries.


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 spirit of the gnomes.[4]

The eccentric, often-brilliant gnomes are one of the most peculiar races of the world. A race of diminutive beings, gnomes have made their mark on Azeroth through the application of collective intelligence and ambition overshadowing that of their larger peers. Gnomes are renowned mechanics, engineers, and technicians, widely respected for their knowledge of the scientific facets of the world and their ability to transform said knowledge into surprising tools, vehicles, armor, and weapons. Much of gnomish philosophy is focused on forward-thinking, inventive concepts; little thought has ever been given to history or non-scientific records. With their obsession for developing radical new technologies and constructing marvels of mind-bending engineering, it is a wonder that any gnomes have survived to proliferate.[4]


Icon-search-48x48 This section contains information that needs to be cleaned up. Reason: Rewrite the History sections (make generalizations) so that this and Gnomeregan (nation) don't have duplicate info


Clockwork Gnome TCG

Mechagnomes, the ancestors of the gnome race.

The first gnomes that came into existence were "mechagnomes", small, metal clockwork-creatures created by the Watcher Mimiron,[5] apparently as servants and caretakers, much like the earthen.[6]

After the betrayal of Loken, the mechagnomes in Uldaman watched over and maintained the facility alongside a small number of earthen that remained out of stasis. As Archaedas and Ironaya became obsessed with curing the Curse of Flesh and retreated into the lower chambers of Uldaman and settled into long periods of hibernation the mechagnomes and earthen were left to manage Uldaman themselves. With the Great Sundering the remaining active earthen went into stasis and only the mechagnomes remained. Yet they too succumbed to the Curse of Flesh and the affliction had them degenerate into beings later known simply as gnomes. They lost all sense of purpose and abandoned Uldaman 3,000 years before the opening of the Dark Portal.[7]

The first generation of gnomes carved out an existence in the snowy mountains west of Uldaman. They struggled to survive against the harsh elements, ice trolls and other dangers that roamed the land. As generations passed they dedicated themselves to technological advancement; these would be the means of sustaining themselves in a savage world. In only a few generations the gnomes lost all knowledge of their titan-forged heritage. What they gained was a new society. The gnomes carved out a series of highly fortified dwellings deep within the cold mountains of what would become known as Dun Morogh.[7]

Early history[]


The mage Indus, one of the first recorded gnomes in history.

Little is known concerning gnomish history previous to the Second War — even among gnomes themselves. Much of gnomish philosophy is focused on forward-thinking, inventive concepts, and little thought has ever been given to history or non-scientific records. It was not until centuries after their transformation into flesh-and-blood beings that gnomes were recognized as a viable and important race. The dwarves were impressed with the ingenuity and quickness of their smaller "kin" (for they had also been titan-forged and similarly cursed, though this was not known at the time and merely based on their close physical dimensions), and they assisted the gnomes in constructing a capital city, Gnomeregan, in the foothills of Dun Morogh near the dwarves' own capital of Ironforge.[4]

Gnomes are remarkably adept arcanists. Pound for pound, they are some of the most potent casters the world has ever known, and have always had a presence in the Kirin Tor.[8] Gnomish society was already in contact with the humans of Arathor and high elves of Quel'Thalas as early as 2,600 BDP. A notable gnome of this time period was Indus, a mage of Dalaran and member of the Council of Tirisfal.[9]

She was followed much later by another gnome named Erbag, also a member of the Council of Tirisfal, during the early days of Aegwynn. He was already inducted eight hundred and forty-four years prior to the Battle of Mount Hyjal. Erbag was described as being highly talkative as well as rather impatient with Aegwynn.

King Mechagon was the last king of the gnomes, who 400 years ago[10] led his followers in search of a mystical land of technology. He left no clues where he was headed and over time his tale became a legend.[11] Gnomes have not had kings or queens since;[10] although Gelbin Mekkatorque has the title "King of Gnomes", he was elected and his position is officially called High Tinker. Having a personally-chosen title is simply a perk of the job.

Thriving within the wondrous techno-city of Gnomeregan, the gnomes shared the resources of the forested Dun Morogh peaks with their dwarven cousins. Though dwarves also have a propensity for technology and engineering, it is gnomes who provide the critical, visionary designs for most of dwarven weapons and steam vehicles.

The First, Second and Third War[]


A gnome during the Second War.

When the orcs from Draenor rushed out from the Dark Portal and caused the First War, the various human kingdoms decided to forge an alliance in order to drive them back. This alliance also included the dwarves and the gnomes who after witnessing the orcs' attack upon Ironforge decided to strike back. The gnomes did not have their own representative in the meetings between the different factions and were instead also represented by the delegate from Ironforge.


A Gnomish flying machine used by the Alliance of Lordaeron.

Early in the Second War, the Orcish Horde started pushing north into Khaz Modan. The dwarves and gnomes failed to stop the advance of the orcish army.[12] The Horde pushed longer into Dun Morogh and besieged both Ironforge and the city of Gnomeregan, but were held off at both places by the ingenuity of the gnomish inventors, whose booby traps and rigged explosives claimed many orcish lives while Gnomeregan itself was shielded by an impenetrable iron gate. Eventually after weeks of fruitless siege, Horde warchief Orgrim Doomhammer called off the attacks and ordered the main army to move on to do battle with the humans in Lordaeron, while Kilrogg Deadeye and the Bleeding Hollow clan would stay behind to ensure that no gnome would leave Gnomeregan and keep the dwarves occupied at Ironforge, hoping that Kilrogg would eventually conquer the two cities while the warchief handled the armies of Lordaeron.[12] The defenders of Gnomeregan and Ironforge held off the orcs long enough for Supreme Commander Anduin Lothar to attack the Bleeding Hollow clan from behind, liberating both the dwarves and gnomes who announced their full support for the Alliance of Lordaeron's cause. While the gnomes were not seen on the front lines as foot soldiers, they still provided invaluable support in machinery, weaponry, and vehicles. Gnomish flying machine scouts swept the air, and their submarine vessels provided much needed naval support, helping the Alliance achieve victory in the end. In many ways, they were the counterpart to the goblins which supported the orcs with their own inventions. This technological battle between gnomes and goblins has survived to this day and has recently been fueled by the Bilgewater Cartel joining the Horde.

Strangely, the gnomes refused to send any personnel to aid their allies during the Burning Legion's invasion during the Third War. Though their designs also helped turning the tide against the Legion, both the humans and the Ironforge - and Wildhammer - dwarves were shocked by Gnomeregan's decision to withhold their courageous troops and pilots.

Despite this, the gnomes from the Alliance military went with Jaina Proudmoore's force to Kalimdor.[13]

When the Third War ended, the Alliance discovered the reason for the gnomes' sudden withdrawal. Apparently, a barbaric menace — troggs — had risen from the bowels of the earth and invaded Gnomeregan. Knowing that their allies' priority was defeating the Burning Legion, the gnomes decided to make their stand alone against the troggs.

Though they fought valiantly to save their beloved city, Gnomeregan was lost and nearly eighty percent of the gnomish race was wiped out during its fall. The ragged survivors fled to the safety of Ironforge.[14] There, they made a new home in Tinker Town.

Aftermath of Gnomeregan's fall[]

Gelbin Cut Short

Gelbin Mekkatorque, leader of the gnomes.

Committed once again to the cause of the Alliance, gnomes spend their time devising strategies and weapons that will help them retake their ravaged city and build a brighter future for their people. Currently, gnomes can be seen living in numerous Alliance and Neutral cities such as Darkshire and Gadgetzan. Many gnomes could also be found at the Mirage Raceway in the Thousand Needles, competing with their goblin rivals, before that area was flooded. (Its replacement, Fizzle and Pozzik's Speedbarge is co-owned by gnomes.) One can also spot the occasional gnome hovel in places like Tanaris, the Hinterlands and Azshara.

The ruling council of the gnomes has reunited in Ironforge at Tinker Town. More recently, gnomish encampments have begun to appear at the fringes of the world, including Toshley's Station in Blade's Edge Mountains and Fizzcrank Airstrip in the Borean Tundra. Gearmaster Mechazod a mechagnome that was found by normal gnomes in the Tundra during the building of the airstrip removes the Curse of Flesh from some of the gnomes turning them into mechagnomes. While the motive behind their activities in Outland is unclear, the gnomish force in Northrend is tasked in establishing a forward base for the Valiance Expedition.

Wrath-Logo-Small This section concerns content related to Wrath of the Lich King.

Just prior to the Cataclysm, the gnomes' leader, High Tinker Gelbin Mekkatorque, led an attack on Gnomeregan’s invaders. The Gnomeregan exiles were priming their forces at Steelgrill's Depot, the staging grounds for the Gnomeregan offensive and the production site of the gnome's mechano-tanks. After the preparations were made, Gelbin led a full assault to wrest control of Gnomeregan's airfield, surface command post, and ultimately underwent a raid into the tunnels of lower Gnomeregan. Despite the Gnomeregan exiles' best efforts to reclaim their techno-city, Sicco Thermaplugg detonated a radiation bomb in the city; forcing Mekkatorque's forces to hastily teleport to the surface to escape the re-irradiated city. It was a successful first maneuver, but there will be much more bloodshed before the entirety of the gnomeland is liberated. In the ongoing effort to reclaim Gnomeregan from Sicco Thermaplugg and his twisted cohorts, the gnomes have carved out a tenuous foothold in New Tinkertown, near the techno-city's gates.[15]

Mechagon Island[]

Comics title This section concerns content related to the Warcraft manga or comics.
Mechagnome comic transformation

The mechanization process, as seen in Mechagon.

On Mechagon Island, King Mechagon decided that the time had come to remove the Curse of Flesh from all titan creations. He was busy creating the Mechoriginator, a machine he'd been perfecting in order to achieve his goal. Not wanting to see his father's plan come to fruition, Prince Erazmin began to secretly plan a revolt against him. His plans were unfortunately discovered when the elderly gnome adventurer, Kervo Cogpipe, single-handedly found his way to the legendary lost island and told the king of his betrayal. With no other choice, Prince Erazmin fled to Rustbolt with all those who supported him,[16] leading to a civil war between the Rustbolt Resistance and the Arcforged loyalists.

Battle for Azeroth This section concerns content related to Battle for Azeroth.

The city of Boralus on Kul Tiras was formerly home to a number of gnomes, but one day they abruptly vanished. To get to the bottom of this, the gnome Parin Tinklocket began investigating the Abandoned Junkheap in Tiragarde Sound, a place containing a large locked vault and various haywire gnomish machines. Though Alliance adventurers helped him survey the area and gather serial plates from the robots, Parin didn't find anything indicating where his fellow gnomes went. He stated that he would send the serial plates to Ironforge and that he would contact the adventurers again if he found anything interesting.[17][18]

During the Rise of Azshara, the vault door was opened. Inside, adventurers will found a transmitter using technology the likes of which no one has ever seen, sending a radio signal for help. The gnomes and goblins jumped at the chance to discover where the signal pointed at and in turn discovered Mechagon. In the Junker Wastes, both the Alliance and Horde were beset by death robots but also befriend the wastes' mechagnomes, from whom they learned more about their culture. Ultimately, the Alliance and Horde helped the mechagnomes break back into their city and fight their way into King Mechagon's palace to face the ruler himself.[19]

In Visions of N'zoth, the mechagnomes, grateful for the aid given to their people for reclaiming Mechagon, have rejoined with their non-mechanized brethren, thus becoming a part of the Grand Alliance as an allied race.


Gnomes are a race of ambitious folk that celebrate creativity and craft and whose lives are validated by a masterful command of the scientific laws of the universe. This outlook on life makes them feel that to be pitied is unbearable, even insulting, though they know their allies do not do this intentionally. They have been more of a race of scholars throughout their history, generally focused on escaping and avoiding conflict,[20] being also known to offset their lack of physical strength with ingenuity and daring.[21] However, the loss of Gnomeregan and years of hardship and survival amongst increased association with the dwarves have made the gnomes stronger and more comfortable with their physical prowess, giving them a combatant edge. Gnome melee fighters have become more common, and are in general more willing to talk back to Tall Folk than ever before.[20]

Unlike many other races such as the dwarves, orcs, and humans, the gnomes had no history of internecine violence prior to the fall of Gnomeregan. Generally speaking, gnomes simply do not fight gnomes. In a world of hostile creatures and Tall Folk, it goes without saying that gnomes have to rely on each other. This is why gnomes don't need primogeniture and why they abandoned monarchy centuries ago, instead electing their leaders by common consent based on their work's benefit to the race as a whole. It is unthinkable for a gnome to act in a selfish manner in spite of the cost to their people, which made Sicco Thermaplugg's betrayal all the more shocking.[20]

Gnomish Experimenter HS

Gnomish Experimenter in Hearthstone.

As noted above, much of gnomish philosophy is focused on forward-thinking, inventive concepts, and little thought has ever been given to history or non-scientific records.[4] According to Muradin Bronzebeard, no gnome can turn down a puzzle.[22]

Little is actually known about gnomish culture. Though what gnomish life really revolves around is unclear, it is perceived by most to be about striving towards the next levels of technology and knowledge through experimentation and tinkering (this is corroborated by the comments and clothing of gnome NPCs).

From that is known, gnomes do value and follow the hierarchy, but they also understand the hierarchy as the masters' duty over the servants, to care for them and help them. Some senior gnomish engineers may actually have less parts, metals and similar resources than an ordinary engineer, as they tend to share them with the followers. Also, the higher rank is most easy to earn by teaching others, while this, of course, requires to be a master on a subject. When goblins say they hate hierarchy as the master first cares about himself (so who would want to be the servant), they seem talking in two completely different languages. Gnome groups are small and form with difficulty over a long time. However when once established, they usually last for life, and a gnome reasonably expects much more support and cooperation from the team-mates than a goblin would. When goblin children leave the family at maturity and go their own ways, gnome families tend to stay together over generations and usually run some shared business.[citation needed] 

It is not known what social norms may exist for gnomish marriages, though Marvin and Tamara Wobblesprocket provide at least one example of humans and gnomes intermarrying. Whether or not half-gnomes might be produced from such unions is unknown. If once created, gnomish family usually lasts for life as gnomes feel duty to stay together not just after the love goes away but even if they already totally dislike each other.[citation needed] 


Gnomes have recently started to venture into the field of brewing. Examples include Gnomenbrau, "a light beer with a big head",[23] and the upstart Short and Stout Brewery in Brewnall Village.[24]


The gnomes have had an interest in the Light since they joined the Alliance, but they were so focused on technology and, later, the retaking of Gnomeregan that studying the Light didn't feel necessary to them; the dwarven priests and paladins of Ironforge served as the only connection to the Light they needed. Now that the gnomes have reclaimed a foothold in Gnomeregan and begun rebuilding their culture outside of Ironforge, however, they've recognized the importance of having followers of the Light in their own ranks. In addition, researching new methods of purifying irradiated gnomes has led to radical advances in Light-based technology![25]

Just like the dwarves of Ironforge, some gnomes have now adopted the values ​​and philosophy of the Church of the Light, becoming followers and practitioners of the Holy Light. They are able to become priests, and while priests among the other races may play the roles of clerics and prophets, gnome priests refer to themselves as doctors, medics and surgeons.[26] In fact, the gnomes practice holy magic as a form of first aid.

Many gnomes are oppositely dark enough to become rogues or even warlocks, having no problem with ordering around minions which are several times larger than themselves.


Mass Resurrection HS

A gnome priest resurrecting her comrades.

Ever since their first meeting, gnomes and dwarves have been strong friends and allies, with dwarves having taught construction and stoneworking to the gnomes, helping them to lay the foundations of Gnomeregan, while gnomes taught them sciences and engineering in return.[4] During the Second War, the two races worked together to defend themselves against the Old Horde's invasion, with the gnomes offering new weapons and technologies to their cousins, until the Horde forced them to take refuge in their respective capitals.[27] Later King Magni Bronzebeard would welcome the gnomes in Ironforge after the loss of Gnomeregan,[28] and the dwarves have been the gnomes' main support into taking their capital back.

They had however an antagonistic relationship with Dark Iron dwarves who were enemies of their Bronzebeard allies, and who seem to have been allies with Sicco Thermaplugg at some point with an ambassador and several agents being found in the irradiated Gnomeregan. Even after the Dark Iron's reunion with their Bronzebeard and Wildhammer cousins relations still seemed to be tense as Gelbin Mekkatorque and his men had a fight with Drukan and other Dark Iron envoys during an Alliance submit at Darnassus though things seem to have cooled off since.[29]

With the Second War gnomes became close allies with humans who liberated them from the Horde siege of Gnomeregan, with the gnomes vowing a debt of gratitude toward the Alliance of Lordaeron for their liberation, with them equipping human forces with their inventions and weapons such as cannons, gunships, tanks or gyrocopters.[30] Gnome mages have also worked with humans for a very long time with many gnomish mages having come to live in Dalaran, they always had a presence in the Kirin Tor.[31] Several gnomes having been members of the Council of Tirisfal, including Indus who was one of the founding members of the council.[32]

Gnomes in night elf territories are tolerated, despite the high number of gnomes who work with arcane forces and their use of and love for technology which clashes with the Night Elves' distrust of arcane and technology. The gnomes believe that with their use of arcane magics and technology they offer something that night elves lack in defense. Following the cataclysmic arrival of Deathwing, gnome engineers and sappers from Tinker Town came in in Ashenvale to help create cannons and bombs for the night elves in their fight against the Horde.[33]

While they tend to find draenei strange, gnomes usually get along well with them. Gnomes have also expressed great interest in and fascination with the technology of the draenei.

Like their human and dwarven allies, gnomes have been victims of the Old Horde's invasion of Azeroth and as such still strongly distrust the orcs and their allies to this day, though they are generally more forgiving than their allies.

Ever since the Second War gnomes have had a rivalry with goblins who supplied the Horde with their technology and weapons similarly to the gnomes with the Alliance, a rivalry that has been only refueled by the joining of the Horde by the Bilgewater Cartel and the renewed conflicts between the Alliance and the Horde. The two races are in competition with each other over which race is the smartest and most advanced technologically, with gnomes generally seeing goblin technology as crude and inferior, though the degree of seriousness of this competition varies according to the individual, with some gnomes being hostile to goblins while others are friendlier to them.


Gnomes speak Gnomish and Common.

Gnomish names[]

Main article: Gnomish (language)#Naming

Mechagon mechagnome[]

Main article: Mechagon mechagnome
Mechagnome Junker gnome BlizzCon 2018

Mechagon mechagnomes

The gnomes of Mechagon Island and Mechagon City are now calling themselves mechagnomes,[19][34] like their titan-forged counterparts, because of their mechanical augmentations.

Mechagon mechagnomes are descended from the regular gnomes of Gnomeregan. They span a variety of different types. The higher-caste gnomes lived in an advanced, aristocratic society inside a huge vault, where they had dedicated themselves to their ruler King Mechagon and his vision to turn anyone of flesh into more pure robotic parts. In this society, the more robot parts one had, the higher one's social standing was.

However, another group of mechagnomes rejected this and dwelled in the outside Junker Wastes where they were beset by death robots. These mechagnomes had fewer mechanical parts and tended to be partially deteriorating. As the Alliance and Horde arrived on Mechagon, they befriended the latter group in an effort to break into the mechagnomes' city and stop King Mechagon.[19][34] These mechagnomes seemed to have a mechanocat racing and customizing[35][36] subculture inspired by the American greasers, complete with sweet pompadours.


Blowtorch Saboteur HS

A male gnome in Hearthstone.

Microtech Controller HS

A female gnome in Hearthstone.

On average, female gnomes are 3'4" tall while males aren't much larger, typically standing at close to 3'6" in height.[37] Some gnomes do not grow to more than a "shortish" height of 2'6".[38] They have four fingers (three fingers, one thumb) on each hand,[39] and five-toed feet. Although it can and has been a bit nebulous in Warcraft art throughout the years, in World of Warcraft, the gnome model is noted to have large, rounded ears in proportion to their head.

While it's unknown exactly how long gnomes can live, the 22-year old Kinndy Sparkshine was considered to be a teenager by her people's reckoning of age.[40] While preparing to enter the Rusted Vault at the Abandoned Junkheap, Tinkmaster Overspark imagined that he might end up rescuing King Mechagon himself, indicating that he expected there was a good chance that the last king of the gnomes was still alive 400 years later.[41]

Gnomes have a high metabolism.[42]

Despite the gnomes' size, they exude great resilience and survivability both in and out of combat.[43]

Before the Gnomeregan incident, some gnomes (such Gnoarn) had earned a reputation for themselves by wearing an eccentric hairstyle known as a "gnomefro".[44]

Thanks to their extremely small size, in World of Warcraft gnomes can be a hard target to click, making it harder for enemies to target you using their mouse. This is especially helpful in the event the gnome is a warrior or rogue. Gnomes who specialize in melee weapons are also particularly hard to target 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 shortest race and can go to certain places where character height keeps other races from going.


Name Occupation Status Location
Alliance IconSmall Mekkatorque Gelbin Mekkatorque High Tinker of Gnomeregan and King of Gnomes Alive Various Locations
Mob IconSmall Sicco Sicco Thermaplugg Self-proclaimed king of the gnomes Deceased Tinkers' Court, Gnomeregan
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Male Bizmo Operator of Bizmo's Brawlpub Alive Bizmo's Brawlpub, Deeprun Tram; Area 52, Netherstorm
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Male Brink Spannercrank SI:7 agent Alive Unknown
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Crusade Engineer Spitzpatrick Engineer of the Argent Crusade Alive Valley of Echoes, Icecrown
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Erbag Member of the Council of Tirisfal Deceased Unknown
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Pip Quickwit Inventor and explorer who was eaten by the Beast Alive Various Locations
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Male Fizzcrank Fullthrottle Leader of Fizzcrank Airstrip Alive Fizzcrank Airstrip, Borean Tundra
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Female Indus Member of the Council of Tirisfal Deceased Unknown
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Female J.D. Collie Researcher studying the power crystals Alive Marshal's Stand, Un'Goro Crater
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Female Kelsey Steelspark Gnomeregan Covert Ops agent Alive Various Locations
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Linken Hero of Un'Goro Crater Alive Sethria's Roost, Mount Hyjal
Neutral IconSmall Millhouse Millhouse Manastorm Powerful mage of questionable loyalty Alive Various Locations
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Narain Soothfancy Master soothsayer Alive Bootlegger Outpost, Tanaris
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Oglethorpe Obnoticus Exiled mekgineer Alive Booty Bay, The Cape of Stranglethorn
Neutral IconSmall Silas Silas Darkmoon Founder of the Darkmoon Faire Alive Darkmoon Island
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Male Tinkmaster Overspark Chief Architect of Gnomish Engineering Alive Various Locations
Alliance IconSmall Gnome Male Toshley Leader of Toshley's Station Alive Toshley's Station, Blade's Edge Mountains
Neutral IconSmall Gnome Male Wilfred Fizzlebang Master summoner of the Argent Crusade Deceased Crusaders' Coliseum, Icecrown; Trial of the Crusader
Mob IconSmall LeperGnome Male Doctor Weavil Leader of undead "drudge gnomes"[45] on Alcaz Island Undead Alcaz Island, Dustwallow Marsh
Neutral IconSmall LeperGnome Male Zelifrax Wobblepox Undead gnome warlock member of the Council of the Black Harvest Deceased Dalaran, Broken Isles
Boss IconSmall KingMechagon King Mechagon Former ruler of Gnomeregan who founded his own kingdom of Mechagon Deceased Mechagon Island
Neutral IconSmall Erazmin Prince Erazmin Son of King Mechagon that was the leader of the Rustbolt Resistance Alive Mechagon Island
Neutral IconSmall Junker Male Walton Cogfrenzy Built Mechagon City as his chief achievement Alive Mechagon Island

Other gnome races[]

  • Mechagnome Mechagnomes - Titan-forged ancestors of modern gnomes, those mechagnomes afflicted with the Curse of Flesh resulted in the modern gnomish race.
  • Mechagon mechagnomeMechagon mechagnome Mechagon mechagnomes - Partially mechanical gnomes, that were normal gnomes but have replaced much of their original body parts. Their ancestors left Gnomeregan and founded a new society on Mechagon Island.
  • Leper gnomeLeper gnome Leper gnomes - Normal gnomes that has been corrupted by the irradiation of Gnomeregan. Most of them have lost their sanity.
  • Sand gnome Sand gnomes - An elusive race of gnomes only seen in single location in Outland. Many even doubt their existence.

In the RPG[]

Icon-RPG This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

A gnome sapper as seen in the Alliance Player's Guide.

Gnomes are a diminutive, wiry race of tinkers who live underground. In the Second War, they built gadgets and vehicles, such as submarines and flying machines, for the Alliance to combat the Horde. They are great mechanics and inventors, renowned for their knowledge and eccentric natures. 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.[46]


Gnome Bombardier by Twincruiser

A gnome bombardier as seen in Magic & Mayhem.

Upon the destruction of Gnomeregan, they traveled to Theramore and were invited to Bael Modan by the Ironforge dwarves.[47]

Most gnomes on Kalimdor remain secluded in Bael Modan. Even after the decimation of their race and the destruction of their city, gnomes are an amiable and kindhearted lot. 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. Gnome society is loosely organized, with most living in Khaz Modan and mixing freely with the dwarves, sending representatives to speak to the dwarven king on their behalf. Those few gnomes who traveled to Kalimdor live in a similar fashion in Bael Modan. 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.[48]

No one knows much about the gnomes' history before dwarves discovered them; not even the gnomes know much of their own history prior to the Second War.[49]

The first widely recorded interaction between gnomes and dwarves occurred a little over 200 years prior to The Burning Crusade. As the story goes, a dwarven explorer came across a small gnomish village. He was shocked to discover that while dwarves had just discovered gunpowder, the gnomes already had a fully automated village with such novelties as mechanical chickens. Contact between the two races grew, and soon, they became quick allies, and the dwarves allowed the gnomes to build their capital city, Gnomeregan, in the foothills of Dun Morogh, near the Dwarven capital, Ironforge.[49]


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 are often seen with goggles, tool belts, and other items related to their technological inclinations.[48]



A group of heroes that includes a gnome, a pandaren, a furbolg, and a Wildhammer dwarf.

Gnomes are great friends of the Ironforge dwarves. They have been allies for generations and often exchange ideas and inventions. Their bond is so great that they live in many dwarven settlements including Ironforge itself. Gnomes have fought and died alongside human soldiers and have been readily welcomed in Stormwind City with open arms. They are wary of the high elves, but so is everyone else, so they don’t feel too bad about that. They battled the Horde in the Second War and have a bit of a grudge against orcs, but gnomes are a kindly and forgiving lot and are willing to give the orcs a second chance. Gnomes and goblins have always been rivals — though whether this rivalry is friendly or brutal depends on the individuals involved. Gnomes have not been on Kalimdor long enough to form proper opinions about its denizens. Tauren and night elves both seem rather rustic for gnome sensibilities — but they can make friends with anyone.[48][50]

Gnomes know the languages of their friends and their goblin rivals.[51]


Gnomes place their loyalty in themselves, in their friends, and in their inventions. A few follow a loftier path and pay their respects to the Holy Light. Since the Ironforge dwarves' recent discovery of their titanic origins, the gnomes think that they too may be products of the Titans.[52] Some female gnomes have been known as members of the Sisters of Steel that have shown abilities to turn their flesh to stone or steel.

Gnome magic[]

Main article: Horde & Alliance magic#Gnomes



A gnome steam warrior.

See also: Alliance technology#GnomesGoblins versus Gnomes

Gnomes tend to design fairly complicated devices that are relatively safe.[53] Gnomes are in many ways commensurate organizers: a gnome can spend as much time (or more) organizing and planning a project as they do actually working on it. If the design fails, they try to learn why, and fix it if they can. If they meet with success, they will continue to tinker with it and improve the design, often for years afterward. Thus, many gnomish designs feature a high degree of complexity and a low chance of failure, the exceptions being those that dabble with chaos energy — but even then, they take steps to ensure the worst that could happen is a brief, non-fatal failure.[54]

Gnomes overplan new projects, producing blueprints and schematics that can take longer to make than the device itself. While this cautious attitude results in higher quality products and a greater success rate, it often takes so long that cost overruns creep in. While a goblin would scream and flee at the mere thought of a cost overrun, a gnome simply shrugs and presses on. If a project fails to work correctly the first time, a gnome will continue to tinker with it, while a goblin would usually give up and move to something else. Thus, gnomish items have very low failure rates compared to goblin items.[55]

Gnomes are innovative thinkers and are responsible for a vast variety of inventions, including more than a few that are commonly attributed to dwarves. Although a diminutive people, gnomes think big, often producing designs far too complex to ever be realized. To gnomes, technology is a way of life. Even gnomes who take on other trades often tinker in their spare time. Because of their innate curiosity, they produce a wide variety of devices that are interesting or amusing but otherwise useless or impractical. While others might shake their heads at such folly, the gnomes value all invention, no matter how unimportant it might seem. Among the well-known gnomish devices are the world enlarger, net-o-matic projector, and harm prevention belt.[56]

Many gnome machines last for a long time, making a significant capital for generations. Even after new, better machines are built for replacement, the older versions are usually good enough to be stored in the mountain caves, reactivating them when necessary.[citation needed]  While goblin can build a more complex and powerful machine for the same price, a really complex machine may break for him before it could be finished. Hence the most advanced systems like Deeprun Tram are still of gnomish origin. Gnome schematics are such that machines and devices can be build as initially thought hundreds of years ago. However, this does not mean they are easy to read or easy to use. Goblin engineers keep saying they suffer strong headaches while reading the stolen gnomish schematics and tend to break out of the middle of specification by finishing the device how they themselves see fit.[citation needed] 

Notes and trivia[]

Gnomes card back

A card back themed after gnomes in Hearthstone: Goblins vs Gnomes.

  • Gnome hair is great for blood elf wigs.[57]
  • Gnomes sometimes broadly refer to the other sentient races that are not close to their own stature as "Tall Folk".[58][59]
  • It appears the position of High Tinker can be held by one person indefinitely, so long as they are re-elected each time their term ends. This is best seen in Gelbin, who has led the Gnomes since he was young and well before the Second War. While unknown how long this is exactly, the Second War was about 20 years before the beginning of World of Warcraft, and Gelbin is an older gnome; meaning he has held the position most of his life.
  • Interestingly enough, because Mimiron is still very much active and alive in Ulduar, gnomes are one of the few races who can actually meet and interact with their own creator.
  • At first it was said that half of the gnomish race was killed during the trogg invasion,[60] but later it was specified that it was actually eighty percent.[14]
  • In the Second War, gnomes are allied with the Alliance of Lordaeron, but they aren't mentioned in the book Tides of Darkness. However, High Tinker Gelbin Mekkatorque plays a role in the follow up (Beyond the Dark Portal), as he is in charge of building the transportation system between Stormwind City and Ironforge.
  • Gnomes are the only playable race where males and females share the same animation skeleton.
  • Most male gnome NPCs are voiced by Dino Andrade. The "young" voice set is voiced by Johnny Cash.[61]
  • Gnomes were, until March 2014, the only original race not to appear in a World of Warcraft cinematic or in any trailer. Tom Chilton had explained that gnomes were added to World of Warcraft "pretty late in its development, when the cinematic was already ... in full production" stating that "since then, there hasn't really been a great opportunity to showcase gnomes," due to factors such as storylines.[62] This was finally rectified when a male gnome was chosen as the main character for Blizzard's "Wish You Were Here" Warlords of Draenor character boost trailer. As well as the gnomes' noted absence in trailers until that point, this model may have been chosen due to being one of the most advanced at the time the trailer was created.
  • The unique model for undead gnomes Surgical Assistants and Leprous Servants is a leper reskin of the gnome player character model used in the WoW Alpha.[citation needed] 
  • There are a number of undead gnomes that use the same skin as leper gnomes.
  • The gnomes were originally planned to be their own faction in Warcraft III, but were later rolled into the Alliance[63] (though no actual gnomes appear in the game).
  • In Hearthstone, the gnomes card back was rewarded for achieving Rank 20 in Ranked Season 9, which took place during December 2014. The flavor text reads: "This multifunctional device also works as a gnomish army knife, a shoe horn and a pass to the Deeprun Tram. Gnomish ingenuity!"
  • Referring to the non-canon RPG race life spans chart, a gnome can actually live for quite some time, becoming mature at the age of 40, middle-aged at 100 and old aged only at 150 and higher. (This is most likely just in speculation, and not completely by Lore.) Alternately, in the book Tides of War, Kinndy Sparkshine is mentioned to be a teenager at 22.[40]
  • The RPG-only Sister of Steel class hinted two years before the actual release of Wrath of the Lich King that humans, dwarves and gnomes shared a common "metallic" ancestry.
  • In the canceled Warcraft Adventures, the gnomes were responsible for creating the black ale that kept the orcs pacified.


  • Gnome cultural inspirations draw from Medieval folklore that led to their Renaissance invention, motifs from some semitic tropes, Romani elements, and terms and concepts borrowed from various branches of science.
    • Gnome, word invented by medieval natural philsopher and physician Paracelsus, possible derived from the Greek genomos that he misspelled.
    • Gelbin Mekkatorque's post Battle for Dazar'Alor mechanization based on Iron Man.
    • Inland Northern American English accent.
    • Them serving as an Alliance parallel to Goblins, in turn based on "Goblin banker" tropes (see Goblin#Notes and trivia), with parallel engineering, may relate to the overlapping stereotype seen in Gnomes of Zürich that in turn developed into antisemitic tropes; this is also reinforced due to historically Jewish peoples being forced to wear special clothing (including pointed hats in some of Europe) during the Middle Ages.
    • The above is reinforced by the gnome king being named "Gelbin", similar to "Goblin".
    • The use of the phrase tinker within gnome culture in their engineering capacity is similar to its real-world use as a traveling mender of tools through metalworking, especially among Romani and Irish Travelers, that today survives but applying to more technological repair efforts.
    • The radiation poisoning of Gnomeregan in combination with the Balkan motifs of the gnomes resembles the Chernobyl disaster
    • Many gnomish names are references to concepts in physics or gestures to technology or engineering, such as Mekkatorque (Torque) or Overspark. Others are Irish or Germanic, such as Crusade Engineer Spitzpatrick (Ftizpatrick (surname)). Some are references to famous inventors, scientists, and thinkers, as Prince Erazmin (Erasmus).


World of Warcraft
Trading Card Game

Gnomish technology[]

See also[]


  1. ^ Before the Storm, chapter 25
  2. ^ A [5-30] He's That Age
  3. ^ A [40-70] Him?
  4. ^ a b c d e Races of World of Warcraft - Gnome
  5. ^ World of Warcraft: The Magazine Volume II Issue I
  6. ^ Inv misc head clockworkgnome 01 [Clockwork Gnome]
  7. ^ a b World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 125
  8. ^ The Old Wizard's Almanac
  9. ^ The First Guardian
  10. ^ a b World of Warcraft manual, pg. 175
  11. ^ A [50] The Legend of Mechagon
  12. ^ a b World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 150
  13. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 64
  14. ^ a b
  15. ^ A [75] Operation: Gnomeregan
  16. ^ Mechagon
  17. ^ A [10-60] Inspection Gadget
  18. ^ A [10-60] Reverse Tinkering
  19. ^ a b c Medievaldragon 2018-11-04. BlizzCon 2018 World of Warcraft: What’s Next Panel Transcript - Page 4 of 4. Blizzplanet. Retrieved on 2019-04-09.
  20. ^ a b c Cut Short
  21. ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Alliance Air Units, Gnomish Flying Machine
  22. ^ Exploring Azeroth: Northrend, pg. 103
  23. ^ Inv drink 05 [Cask of Gnomenbrau]
  24. ^ A [1-30] Bound for Kharanos
  25. ^ Ask CDev #2
  26. ^ "Doc" Cogspin, Holdout Medic, North Fleet Medic, Chief Surgeon Gashweld
  27. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 150
  28. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 114
  29. ^ Wolfheart, chapter 9
  30. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 172
  31. ^ The Old Wizard's Almanac
  32. ^ The First Guardian
  33. ^ A [10-30] Do Yourself a Favor
  34. ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment 2018-11-02. World of Warcraft: What's Next Panel Recap. Retrieved on 2019-04-09.
  35. ^ Cork Stuttguard#Quotes
  36. ^ Marvelous Martini#Quotes
  37. ^ Height#Playable races
  38. ^ Traveler: The Spiral Path, pg. 224
  39. ^ Before the Storm, chapter 18
  40. ^ a b Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War, chapter 4
  41. ^ A [50] The Legend of Mechagon
  42. ^ Rosey Axlerod
  43. ^ H [60P] Ally of the Tauren
  44. ^ A [27D] The Day After
  45. ^ Clint#Quotes
  46. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 40
  47. ^ Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 60
  48. ^ a b c World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 40
  49. ^ a b Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 145
  50. ^ Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 18
  51. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 41
  52. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 40 - 41
  53. ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 107
  54. ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 12
  55. ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 101
  56. ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 100
  57. ^ Inv misc monstertail 02 [Tuft of Gnome Hair]
  58. ^ Cut Short, pg. 6, 7
  59. ^ Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War, chapter 12
  60. ^
  61. ^ Johnny Cash on Twitter (2023-02-03). Retrieved on 2023-02-04.​ “I voice the 'Male Gnome Young', so like a solid 1/8th of all gnome characters in the game across all of WoW. Which makes me very happy because gnomes always have been and always will be the best race and I am so proud to continue to be a part of their legacy via my bad acting.”
  62. ^ WoW Source: Patch 5.4 Developer Round Table
  63. ^ Game Informer #308: Reforging Real-time Strategy, pg. 57