The female dwarf has forever been a challenge for fantasy creators leaning on Tolkien, because he didn’t really do them. Some, like Terry Pratchett, have made them comically indistinguishable from their male counterparts, beards and all. In the interests of unbounded character creation, Blizzard took the other route for World of Warcraft - resulting in the stocky, strong ladies we’ve had in the game since 2004.
Lately, though, they’ve begun to look outmoded - and not for their lack of beards. The WoW dev team have redesigned them for upcoming expansion Warlords of Draenor - and they now look like this.
“It was a challenge for our character artists to find a balance between the classic female dwarf model and the expressiveness of her fluid new animations,” write Blizzard.
“But we think the updated model says ‘descended from unyielding stone’ as much as ‘griffon-riding, ale-swilling, loud-living hero’.”
The ongoing character revamps will bring new animations and high definition models to WoW, but won’t expand the existing customisation options. Fraser’s already covered the new female orc, and you can get a first-hand look at the animations of the new dwarf in the Warlords of Draenor character viewer.
So: how’ve they done?