Much like their allies, the dwarves, it was revealed in Wrath of the Lich King that gnomes were originally robots made by the Titans to help the Keepers, but that they had mutated into their current state by the Old Gods.
- Animal Mecha: Their signature mount is a mechanical ostrich-like bird.
- The Bus Came Back: They were introduced in Warcraft II, but inexplicably absent during Warcraft III when the Scourge attacked the Alliance. World of Warcraft brought them back and revealed the reason of their absence; they were busy trying to fight off the Troggs from Gnomeregan, and as such unable to send help to Lordaeron.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Not quite on the same level than the Goblins, but they still are perceived as eccentric by the other races, and a lot of them have rather strange quirks.
- Cute Monster Girl: "Monster" might be a stretch since Gnomes at least all look human enough, but males tend to be Gonks with weird facial hairs, while females look like adorable little girls.
- Escape Artist: They have a racial trait named after the trope, which grants them the ability to instantly free themselves from any effect immobilizing or imprisoning them.
- Gadgeteer Genius: It's their hat. They get a bonus when taking the engineering profession to reflect this.
- Government in Exile: Thanks to Thermaplugg's schemes and the Troggs invading it, Gnomes have been forced to leave Gnomeregan and retreat in Ironforge, while still trying to recover their city. Starting with Cataclysm, however, they start to get some success and recover at least part of it.
- Knife Nut: Gnomes get a boost to their skill with knives and short-swords.
- Mad Scientist: Not as insane or explosion-obsessed as Goblins, but some Gnome characters are still known to have some of their inventions backfire. For example, one of them once created mechanical birds which he made sentient, resulting in them turning against him out of jealousy when he started working on a new, more advanced pet project.
- Magic Is Mental: Puns aside, they get a small boost to their intellect, resistance to Arcane magic, and mana pool.
- Out of Focus: Of all the playable races in the game, the Gnomes are consistently out of focus of the narrative and tend to only appear in moments of comedic quests. They still have yet to reclaim their home and very few, if any, Gnomes have been a major player in any of the expansions.
- Plucky Comic Relief: To the Alliance races; their quirks and eccentricity tend to be played for laugh, and, as mentioned above, they get very little focus in the main story, usually being relegated to comedic questlines. Their cartoonish design also makes it hard to take them seriously, especially males.
- Ridiculously Human Robots: A strange case of the trope. As a quest chain in Wrath revealed, gnomes can actually be reverted back into mechagnomes (and one quest allows you to convert mechagnomes back into gnomes). This meant that all gnomes are "technically" mechagnomes under their flesh. The quest chain implies that while some gnomes do not quite like their time as mechagnomes, other gnomes felt that they had become "complete" as mechagnomes.
- The Rival: With Goblins. The two of them are practically always at each other's throats or in competition to prove who's the best at creating machines.
- Shorter Means Smarter: They are, along with Goblins, both the smallest and most technologically advanced playable race.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Gnomes can have quite an unusual range of hair color, including green, blue and pink.
Voiced by: Dino Andrade
The current High Tinker of the Gnomes, Geblin is a renowned inventor and is praised for his great intellect. However, during a terrible Trogg invasion, Geblin was forced to abandon the gnomes home city of Gnomergan after following the advice of his second-in-command, Mekgineer Thermaplug, and unleashing a radiation bomb to stop the troggs. The fallout from the bomb made Gnomergan uninhabitable, and poisoned many of Mekkatorque's own subjects, turning them into hideous and insane Lepper Gnomes. To make matters worse, Thermaplugg took control of the city for himself and declared himself the new king.
Residing in Ironforge, Mekkatorque spent years planning to retake Gnomergan from Thermaplugg. These plans came to fruition prior to the Cataclysm, as he and a vast of gnomes army marched upon the city. While they were successful in recapturing the surface areas, they were unable to succeed in taking the deeper levels of the city. While still not fully content with their situation, Mekkatorque is happy with their progress, and one day hopes to have their home back fully in his grasp.
- Arch-Enemy: His Treacherous Advisor Thermaplugg who tricked him into irradiating his home and thwarted his attempt to retake it by using another radiation bomb.
- Armor-Piercing Response: His answer to one of Thermaplugg's questions gives him pause.Sicco: What? Lies! If my work was so shoddy, then why let me take credit for the guns?
Gelbin: Because you were my friend.
- Back for the Dead: Downplayed, because he doesn't die as much as get put into a coma, but after more than a decade of near abscence from any central plot, he's given a much bigger role in the Battle for Dazal'Alor, where the Horde fights him as a boss.
- Badass Bookworm: He's more of a technological bent than a physical one, but that doesn't prevent him from contributing.
- Badass Grandpa: The white hair and bald head is evidence enough to his age.
- Badass Mustache: Has some pretty impressive mutton chops.
- Bald of Awesome: He's bald on top of his head, though some of his artwork portrays him with hair in the back.
- Calling Your Attacks: Against the Gnome starting questline boss.
- Carry a Big Stick: Carries a pretty large one-handed mace for one of his size.
- Cool Old Guy: If his white hair is anything to judge by, he's definitely up in the years, but also well-respected and has the best intentions for his people.
- Cruel Mercy: In "Cut Short" after his battle with Thermaplugg ends with Thermaplugg non-fatally cut in half, Gelbin leaves him to his fate with a "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!: Like the rest of gnome kind, finds being pitied by the dwarves to be unbearable, and thus resolves to retake Gnomeregan.
- Doomed Hometown: Gnomeregan, alas, he knew it well.
- Gadgeteer Genius: With the way gnomes value engineering genius, there's a good reason why Mekkatorque is the High Tinker.
- Goggles Do Nothing: That's a very nifty piece of goggles, whatever they're actually used for.
- Hero Antagonist: Much like most bosses in Battle for Dazar'alor, his only crime is being on the opposing faction (although he's smug and racist during the raid, so at least he's not very sympathetic).
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Wields a slowly spinning shield.
- Mini-Mecha: Gets his own awesome mech in Legion and puts it to great use at the Broken Shore.
- My Greatest Failure: Trusting Thermaplugg during the trogg invasion.
- Offhand Backhand: At the Broken Shore, a felguard charges him from the side while he's transmitting his position to a gunship. Without seemingly even looking at the demon, his mecha's left arm changes into a cannon and shoots it in the face.
- Plot Armor: Played with. During his Battle for Dazar'alor encounter, he'll deploy two linked shield generators that give him a buff literally called P.L.O.T Armor when he reaches 40% health.
- The Power of Friendship: Gives a speech regarding this to Thermaplugg, saying that this is what sets them apart from the goblins, and is why the other races are helping them retake Gnomeregan.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: During his raid encounter in Battle for Dazar'alor, he throws racist remarks against Horde players left and right.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Against Thermaplugg.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Gives one to Thermaplugg at the end of their confrontation in "Cut Short," after explaining where he had gone wrong in the past.
- Took a Level in Badass: The attempted retaking of Gnomeregan had him stepping up to the plate and shaping up to be a good leader after all. Taken Up to Eleven during Legion and Battle for Azeroth, where he personally enters the fray in a massive mechasuit during the Battle for the Broken Shore and the Siege of Lordaeron, managing to hold his own quite well alongside heavyweights such as Greymane, Varian, and Alleria.
- Unexpected Character: Be honest, who honestly expected Mekkatorque of all people to show up in the Siege of Orgrimmar?
- And now again in Battle for Azeroth. Not only does he show up in a raid,he's a raid boss.
- Unwitting Pawn: And Sicco Thermaplugg wasn't even convincing! Elaborated as being a partial case of Good Cannot Comprehend Evil in his leader short story - Unlike most of Azeroth's denizens, the Gnomes had practically no history of fighting among themselves, so the possibility of a traitor in their own ranks simply didn't cross his mind untill it was too late...
An old friend to Gelbin Mekkatorque, Sicco Thermaplugg was once a proud and ambitious gnomish engineer who sought to make Gnomeregan a great and powerful nation. His greedy desire for power combined with a lust for revenge against those he felt had cheated him from his rightful place in gnomish society turned him into the greatest traitor of Gnomeregan.
- Cruel Mercy: In "Cut Short" after his battle with Mekkatorque ends with Thermaplugg non-fatally cut in half, Gelbin leaves him to his fate with a "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: He gets cut in half by Mekketorque in "Cut Short".
- Handicapped Badass: Gets cut in half and loses his legs in "Cut Short". He still shows up in Gnomeregan later.
- Hoist by Their Own Petard: His own trap backfires spectacularly, and ends up getting him cut in half.
- It's All About Me: Thinks that he was cheated him from his rightful place in gnomish society by others.
A high ranking agent in the Gnomeregan Covert Ops dispatched to Tanaris to see that Gnomeregan's interests are secured. She plays cute and innocent, but it's an act to cover the determined and (if necessary) ruthless agent within. Shows up several more times over following expansions, but most prominently in Battle for Azeroth, where she participates in much of the Alliance's war effort in Zandalar and Kul Tiras.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: While she isn't truly evil, she does use a perky and cheerful act in Gadgetzan while trying to convince Noggenfogger to sign an agreement with the Gnomes. Her interactions with the Horde Goblins and later when she is on field show she actually can be very nasty and ruthless.
- Hypocritical Humor: In her rivalry with the Horde Goblins. She repeatedly criticizes them for doing things such as pillaging pirates they are attacking, then orders you to do the exact same thing in your quests just so to show Gnomes are better at it than goblins.
- Power Perversion Potential: In one of her quests where you collect treasures to bring back to her, she warns you her goggles can see through the bag to check if you are trying to keep some for yourself. Then she reveals she can also use them to see through your armor...
- Rose-Haired Sweetie: Invoked; she has pink hair, and as for the attitude, well, see above.
- Wrench Wench: Even for a gnome, she's got a rather eccentric love of machines, and ironically a rather Goblin-esque love of explosives.
An ambitious gnomish mage who seeks great power for his own ends, though most see him as little more than a nuisance.
- Artifact of Doom: He wants to collect these, to make sure they don't fall into the wrong hands, of course.
- Bait-and-Switch Boss: He gets knocked away by a giant worm before he gets the chance to fight you in Stonecore.
- Berserk Button: Dont call him lowly.
- Evil All Along / FaceHeel Turn: While appearing friendly, if a bit weird in Tempest Keep. He later reveals himself to be part of the Twilights Hammer in Cataclysm, or at least joined it after having spent an unknown amount of time locked up next to Harbinger Skyriss.
- Evil Is Hammy
- HeelFace Turn: Claims to have undergone one in Warlords of Draenor. Hes clearly lying.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: During his brief escapade as a Twilight's Hammer cultist, nothing really goes his way, and he ultimately ends up posing no threat whatsoever.
- Laughably Evil: Emphasis on "laughable" due to his eccentricity and being thoroughly ineffectual as a villain.
- Prison Rape: "Prison taught me one very important lesson. Well two if you count how to hold your soap."
- Token Evil Teammate: A member of the Twilight's Hammer. However, he sides with the adventurer on Draenor to help fight the Iron Horde and the Tirisgarde in the fight against the Legion.
- Unexplained Recovery: In his Cataclysm appearance he's knocked off a cliff to his apparent demise. He later shows up perfectly fine in the Brawler's Guild, with the announcer claiming Stonecore was merely a setback.