[1.1] Races and Racials
Currently, all races but Goblins and Worgen can be Monks. All races that can be Monks are all great choices for leveling, however some are simply better than others. But do not let that deter you from picking your favorite race and punching things! Below are a general rundown of all racials and races.
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Dwarves - Stoneform is a free version of Detox which removes Diseases and Poisons (Magic also, if you are a Mistweaver), however Detox does NOT remove Bleeds (early beta builds Detox did remove bleeds). Gun Specialization is useless as Monks cannot use Guns or Ranged weapons. Mace Specialization provides 1% Expertise for 1h Maces and Frost Resistance reduces Frost damage by a flat 1%.
Final Verdict - Pretty cut and clean when it comes to Dwarves. Stormform will be used fairly often as debuffs such as Bleeds, Diseases, and Poisons are quite common grinding from level to level. Mace Specialization is a nice perk that only shines should you wield 1h Maces.
Gnomes - Gnomes finally get to punt back! Escape Artist remove snags, roots, and snares. Outside the PvP trinket and Tiger's Lust talent, there are no other ways for a Monk to remove snags, snares, or roots. Expansive Mind has no use for Windwalker Monks and is better suited for Mistwalker Monks instead. Engineering Specialist does not aid in leveling up. Shortblade Specialization is only useful for 1h Swords.
As a side note, wearing the gloves of any Monk PvP set clear snares by using Roll, Chi Torpedo, and Flying Serpent Kick. Malevolent Gladiator's Copperskin Gloves
Final Verdict - While leveling up I find roots, snags, or snares rare meaning Escape Artist doesn't shine compared to Stormform or Every Man for Himself. 1% Expertise with swords is handy though. Gnomes ftw regardless.
Human - Both good at PvE, or PvP. Every Man for Himself is basically a PvP trinket, removing anything that makes you lose control of your character, including snags/snares/roots. Tigers Lust removes snags/snares/roots as well. Diplomacy is great for reputation gains. Human Spirit has no place for Windwalker Monks and is tied exclusively to Mistweaver Monks. Both Mace and Sword Specialization provides 1% Expertise to 1h Maces and Swords.
Final Verdict - A free PvP trinket, 10% boost to rep gains, and expertise for Maces and Swords. Humans are a great choice for leveling up.
Nightelf - Nightelves are the mixed bag in my opinion. A little bit of everything if you are into PvE or PvP. Shadowmeld allows for sneaky PvP attacks. All monks have access to Transcendence, which acts similar. Shadowmeld can also be used in combat to drop all threat temporarily and forcing mobs to attack your pet, or another one of your allies instead, or at least until the buff is removed, restoring the threat on you. I hope your ally/pet has higher threat! Quickness grants a passive 2% chance to dodge melee/ranged attacks with no diminishing returns, making Nightelves great at tanking. Wisp Spirit is moot considering guild perks (and presuming you have a guild). Elusiveness provides passive sneakiness while Shadowmelding. Nature Resistance grants 1% Nature damage reduction.
Final Verdict - Nightelves lean heavily towards tanking over leveling up in terms of racials, however a flat 2% dodge chance means you dodge where others might get hit. A must for tanking, but hardly noticeable while leveling.
Draenei - 'Gift of the Naaru' provides a flat heal that restores 20% of the targets total health. Heroic Presence grants you a passive 1% Hit bonus. Gemcutting provides a minor bonus to your Jewelcrafting skill, however plays no real role in leveling up. Shadow Resistance reduces Shadow damage by 1%
Final Verdict - Monks do not get any type of heal until Level 26, making 'Gift of the Naaru' a great racial for leveling early on. A passive 1% free hit ensures you have a better chance to sock someone upside the head while other races just miss.
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Pandaren - Pandaren Monks are not tied to faction at first. When you are done creating your Pandaren Monk, you are allowed to pick either Alliance or Horde. A first in World of Warcraft! Pandaren are powerful in both PvE and leveling. Quacking Palm is a carbon copy of Gouge, incapacitating targets for 4 seconds and turns off your attack. Bouncy reduces fall damage taken by half meaning a reasonably long fall will not kill you. Epicurean allows you double benefit from a well-fed buff. To add more perks to it, Gourmand gives a 15 point skill boost to cooking. The real benefit is Inner Peace, which allows your rested XP to last twice as long!
Final Verdict - Whether you go Horde or Alliance, Pandaren are clear winners regardless. Quacking Palm is great for disabling an enemy's partner while you finish off your original target or interrupting a spell. Monks have few ways to stun or interrupt early on, adding that extra boost to your arsenal. If you have a high level character with cooking, send some food toward your Panda Monk to see him gain some pretty decent stats early on. Bouncy is a very nice perk, allowing you to trek across mountain terrain without fear of dying...assuming it's not too high. Splat! Inner Peace extends the use of Rested XP greatly, allowing you that extra bit of XP while other races have to work just a little harder.
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Orc - Right off the bat, Blood Fury puts Orcs at the top of the list of Horde Monks. Attack Power is the butter to your bread, allowing you to smack your target around harder for 15 seconds. Hardiness reduces stun effects by 15%, but stuns are few and far between while leveling. Command is semi-worthless as Monks only get access to one pet, for 45 seconds. Axe Specialization provides 1% Expertise to 1h Axes.
Final Verdict - Blood Fury provides extra AP for hitting harder. Stacked with certain Monk abilities at later levels allow Orc Monks to deal some serious punishment, kill things faster, and get things done just a little quicker.
Tauren - War Stomp provides an AoE stun while Endurance provides 5% extra base health meaning Tauren can take punishment a little longer than other races. Cultivation is a perk. Nature Resistance provides 1% Nature damage reduction.
Final Verdict - Outside Endurance and War Stomp, Tauren bring little else to play while leveling up.
Troll - Berserking provides 20% attack speed and/or 20% casting speed for 10 seconds, meaning fists will fly 20% faster! Boom boom pow! Regeneration provides passive health regeneration and provides a 10% bonus in-combat health regen. Beast Slaying provides 5% damage bonus against Beasts. Throwing and Bow Specialization is useless as Monks cannot use either. Da Voodoo Shuffle provides little benefit as well.
Final Verdict - Berserking is perfect if you're either DPS or healing. Beast Slaying is also very nice as beasts are a very common type of quest target! Regeneration is a nice, if barely noticeable perk as well.
Forsaken - Will of the Forsaken will rarely be used. Cannibalize is a wonderful leveling tool as Humanoid and Undead targets are very common. Touch of the Grave (replacing Underwater Breathing) is a very good passive that both damages AND heal you for the damage dealt. Shadow Resistance provides a passive 1% damage reduction to Shadow damage.
Final Verdict - A nice choice for a leveling Monk. Cannibalize can heal you outside combat and Touch of the Grave can keep you going!
Blood Elf - Arcane Torrent silences all around you for 2 seconds and restores 1 Chi. Arcane Affinity provides a 10 point bonus to Enchanting. Magic Resistance reduces all Arcane damage taken by 1%. Very little else to say.
Final Verdict - Aside from Arcane Torrent, there is little to gain while leveling as a Blood Elf. The silence is a perk as Monks do not gain an interrupt until Level 32.