The New Races
Not all of the low-level content is going to be available to new players who don’t purchase Cataclysm, however, because Blizzard has included two more new races with this expansion – Goblins and Worgen, who serve the Horde and Alliance respectively.
The Goblins are what you’d expect - short mischievous, green-skinned characters that make up for their lack of morality with buckets of attitude. They’ve been a part of WoW lore for some time, but up until now they’ve been a neutral faction in World of Warcraft. In typical Blizzard fashion, this remains largely true in Cataclysm because the Goblins which join the horde are part of a particular faction called the Bilgewater Cartel.
You don’t technically start as part of the Horde, however, as the Bilgewater Cartel begins as just another neutral Goblin faction. As a Goblin, you’ll take part in a unique 1-10 leveling experience that explains how the Bilgewater Cartel came to be part of the Horde. Along the way, you’ll take part in a number of phased events that show of just how personalized World of Warcraft can be. The 1-10 experience is great, and the Goblin models themselves are the best character models in the game so far. Better yet, the Goblins receive a number of cool racial abilities, like rocket boots.
Goblins are great, but unfortunately this may be because Blizzard spent more time on them than they did on the Worgen, the new Alliance race. The Worgen are, essentially, werewolves. Unlike most werewolves, however, the Worgen have conquered their animal bloodlust and can now take a place in society. The events leading up to this are explained in another unique 1-10 leveling experience, and while it lacks the character of the Goblin starting zones, the Worgen intro is better paced.
Even so, the Worgen have many downfalls. Their female character models are absurd, for example. While the males have a fierce stance, with large teeth and dangerous eyes, the female Worgen look as if they were taken straight from a furry fan-fic. The hunched posture of the males is gone, the fierce eyes are replaced with a pair of cartoonish, slightly saucy orbs, and – like every female character ever in WoW – the female Worgen have managed to hold on to their gigantic breasts despite their transformation into beast-women.
There are other signs that the Worgen are not well integrated into the game. They are given no racial mount, for example, but instead use “Running Wild" an ability which lets Worgen characters run at the speed of a mount when out of combat. While useful, it seems like a way to save time thinking up and modeling another racial mount. Up until this expansion there was no real indication that the Worgen would make a mass exodus to the Alliance. Of course, Blizzard pulled this trick before with the Draneni, who literally fell onto Azeroth from outer-space. But the Draneni were given a 1-20 leveling experience and also made up for their lack of prominence on Azeroth with their many appearances in the Outlands. The Worgen, on the other hand, remain rarely encountered by players even in the new 80-85 leveling zones.