Classes and Starting Attributes
Humans have seven different classes to choose from: Death Knight, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Warlock, and Warrior.
Increases stealth detection by 5 points (equivalent of 1 level).
The Human Spirit (Passive)
Spirit increased by 3%.
Faction reputation gains increased by 10%.
Every Man for Himself (Instant cast, 2 minute cooldown)
Activate to remove all movement impairing effects and all effects which cause loss of control of your character.
Sword Specialization (Passive)
Expertise with One-Handed Swords and Two-Handed Swords increased by 3.
Mace Specialization (Passive)
Expertise with One-Handed Maces and Two-Handed Maces increased by 3.
Here I go over each class with an analysis based purely on stats. A lot of people on forums like to ask what race their should pick for a certain class, and the answer they receive is always the same, “go for whichever race appeals to you most visibly”. But these people aren’t asking which race looks the prettiest, they are asking which one will help them the most with the character. The answer they receive is pretty valid, it really doesn’t matter. But, that doesn’t mean it can’t help as well.
While your race does not make a huge difference in the overall scheme of how powerful your character will be at end game, it can impact how well you do early on. Oftentimes a player will start a character and then decide within the first 10 levels whether or not they like the character. So, it’s important to start off with a solid race/class combination if you’re not one for sticking it out for a while to really give the character a chance.
If you ignore the long term and start out looking just at the base starting attributes then I find the following.
As is typical with most games that include other playable races alongside humans, the human receives a few extra little perks so that everyone doesn’t just grab the extraordinary races and leave the humans behind. The excellent thing about the Humans is that their attributes all start out at 20 or higher, so every class choice that they have is great. It might not be exceptional like some of the other races that have base attributes above 20, but they don’t fall into the trap that those races do in having less than 20 for another attribute.
The Human racial ability of Perception is good for all classes, though it’s not exceptional. It has more use in PvP than it does in PvE, but even then it’s not all that great as the only class that’s going to be using stealth against you (Rogues) is likely to have spent talent points to raise their stealthing ability as well. But, not every rogue will be spend their talent points the same way, so this could very well save your life. There are some instances that use stealth in them as well, so it does have PvE uses, just not a whole lot of them. Spell casters will find the most use out of The Human Spirit, and priest and warlocks tend to love it.
Their racial bonus from Diplomacy makes quite an impact on anyone who plans on doing any reputation farming. I’m not usually a big fan of farming rep, but here lately I have had to do just that with my paladin so that I could get Enchanting formulas for him. Unfortunately, I’m a blood elf so no +10% bonus for me (/frown). If you have any plans to spend a good deal of time with end game content or raiding, the time that you save from having Diplomacy make it one of the best racial abilities in the entire game. You will not see much benefit from it for the first part of your character’s life, but it will certainly pay off in the long run.
Gaining Sword/Mace Specialization gives some of the melee classes a bit of an edge. While the bonus from these isn’t spectacular, every little bit helps.
And the strongest of Human racial abilities is Every Man for Himself which has applications in all aspects of the game. Gnomes can escape snaring effects, Undead can remove effects that cause the loss of control, but only Humans can do both at once. Again, this is an amazing ability for PvP, but it also has great potential in PvE as well with how many mobs are able to use the very effects that this protects you from.
Mage: As I mentioned before, the Human’s high starting attributes make them good for all class choices, and with Intellect and Spirit both starting at 23, Humans get an excellent start on the mage class. From a racial ability stand point, the mage’s only real benefit for being a Human is going to be the increased Spirit to help with mana regeneration.
Paladin: Being a hybrid class the paladin’s attribute points are a bit more spread out than other non-hybrid classes. But again, since Humans start with such high scores in everything they are still exceptional in all class choices. With Strength, Stamina, and Spirit all starting at 22 a Human paladin is a perfect choice for the class and specifically for the Protection Paladin spec (I have quite a bit of Prot Pally info here). If you do happen to be playing a tank, then Every Man for Himself becomes an excellent tool for helping you stay in control.
Priest: Priests rely pretty heavily on their Spirit to regenerate their mana for them, and The Human Spirit is a perfect fit for that. With 23 Intellect to establish a solid mana pool early on and 24 Spirit to help with the regeneration of that mana, Human Priests will have less downtime to worry about regenerating their mana. Every Man for Himself also allows a healer (or dps) to stay more focused their roles in a group. Nothing sucks more in an instance than having your tank die because something took out your healer, and the Human has some great tools to prevent that from happening.
Rogue: If you look at the table above with the starting attributes you will find that most race/class combinations have an overall +6 bonus if you count the number of attribute points above 20 and subtracting those below 20. The Rogue is an exception to this as they receive an overall +8 bonus. Humans make great Rogues with a starting 23 Agility, and while it’s not the highest in the game it is certainly a solid choice for a rogue. Being able to slip out of your enemy’s hands is always a rogue’s job and Every Man for Himself helps with that a lot. The increase from The Human Spirit will also help you to regenerate your health while stealthing around your enemies. Rogues also benefit from both Mace & Sword Specialization, though you don’t see a lot of mace rogues these days. At early levels swords are a stronger choice for rogues than daggers, and these racial bonuses can help you even more.
Warlock: Human Warlocks do not get quite so optimized attributes starting out as other classes do, but 22 Intellect, 23 Spirit, and 21 Stamina help Human ‘Locks to do what they do best. The biggest benefit that a Warlock is likely to get out of this deal is The Human Spirit to help with life/mana regeneration as well as spell power if the warlock specs to receive the bonus.
Warrior: With 23 Strength, 22 Stamina, and 21 Spirit, a Human Warrior again is able to start off with a solid set of attributes. The same general trend we’ve seen in other classes above apply here as well: The Human Spirit will help with regeneration and by doing so reduce downtime a bit, Every Man for Himself helps to keep you in control of your own character, and the Mace/Sword Specialization abilities work very well here.
With such a great array of starting attributes and solid, though not spectacular, racial abilities the Human can easily perform well in every class. My personal preferences for Humans is either Priest, Rogue, or Paladin, but as I said they make excellent choices for all of their available classes. If I were to pick a single class that I feel is a perfect fit for the human it would be Priest, but I put the Rogue and Paladin close behind.