Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Short, Pyschopathic Races

Wildstar released details of their latest race, the Chua. The Chua are a short, psychopathic, technologically-inclined race.

This seems to be a little bit of a trend in MMOs lately. WoW had the Goblins, Guild Wars 2 had the Asura, and now Wildstar comes up with the Chua.

I confess that I don't really understand the appeal of these races. They just come across as caricatures, with no nuance, depth, or grace.

These races seem to be an MMO-only phenomenon. I don't recall seeing anything similar in single-player games, books or movies. An odd coincidence, don't you think?

Frankly, the Chua have given me a bit of a distaste for Wildstar. I strongly hope that Wildstar doesn't overuse the Chua, thinking that they are "cool".


  1. You clearly have not played enough Pen and Paper RPGs. Sprites, gnomes, halflings, even in some games dwarves often have moderate psychopathic tendencies, and the ideas of gnomes being technically inclined dates back decades (see Dragonlance, among other series).

    This is not a new thing, just a continuation of a fantasy trope.

  2. Well, yes, I concede Tinker gnomes from Dragonlance. But they weren't psychopaths. They're closer to WoW gnomes.

    And I suppose Dark Sun had cannibal halflings. But they weren't technically inclined.

    I dunno, I guess I just haven't really seen this before, and then to get three similar races in a short timespan seems to be weird to me.

  3. Depends on your viewpoint. Gnomes seem moderately psychopathic to me given their lassez-faire attitude towards safety standards, in both WoW and Dragonlance.

    Perhaps they really are just cribbing off one another.

  4. I think you might be using the common misperception of psychopathic, as the term refers primarily to anti-social behaviours, not necessarily people who are just violent or manipulative (

    I don't even know if I'd refer to WoW goblins as psychopathic at all, but Dragonlance Kender and Gnomes both match many of the definitions.

  5. Don't forget that WoW also had the Gnomes, which also qualify as a short, psychopathic race.

    I'm sure that all of this is coming out of the old Tinker Gnomes (and, to a lesser extent, Kender) from the Dragonlance setting, but still, it's blech.

  6. I think these races are a mixture of the Gremlin myth and the Gnome myth. The Gremlins were creatures who tore up parts from airplanes and were mischievously sabotaging things. in the case of WoW Gnomes they add in the mad scientist aspect. The goblins are obviously a mixture of this and Star Trek Ferenge (sp?) but they bear no resemblance to mythical goblins from Tolkien and even look more like the creatures conceived for the movie "Gremlins" imo. I don't care too much for them but I think at least in the case of Blizzard they hold true to the pop culture humor instilled in the game

  7. Adding to the D&D list: Duergar, the evil dwarves who live in the underdark. They are often overlooked because of all the other horrors that live with them though (drow, illithid, umberhulks to name a few).

    Hmm if anyone played Spelljammer, how big was a neoghi?

  8. Games Workshop!s Warhammer universe has had crazy goblins for ages. I think, they dabbled with engines too.

  9. Also Space Orks in Warhammer 40K. "RED WUNZ GO FASTA!"