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World of Warcraft: Dragonflight drops gendered language from character creator

Blizzard’s new WoW expansion offers non-gendered body types, possible pronoun choice

A Dracthyr Evoker poses for the camera in World of Warcraft: Dragonflight Image: Blizzard Entertainment
Ryan Gilliam (he/him) has worked at Polygon for nearly seven years. He primarily spends his time writing guides for massively popular games like Diablo 4 & Destiny 2.

The alpha for World of Warcraft: DragonflightWoW’s ninth expansion — is here, and players are already testing out the new content. While not all of the expansion’s new content is available for testing, Blizzard has included an important update to its character creation menus in this first build: non-gendered language. World of Warcraft news and data-mining site Wowhead reported Thursday that voice and pronoun options may be coming in a later build as well.

The change currently implemented in the alpha renames the male and female body options in the character creator to Body 1 and Body 2. Characters created using the Body 1 option will use what used to be the male character customizations — notably, this is where facial hair options live. Body 2 uses the existing female customization options — these characters have breasts, changing the shape of most outfits. Players can change body types when creating their character or at an in-game barber shop in town.

A Dracthyr Evoker sits in the barber shop in World of Warcraft: Dragonflight Image: Blizzard Entertainment

In addition to changing language around body types, Wowhead discovered that pronoun selection may also be coming to the game in a future build. However, Wowhead points out that the game rarely (if ever) refers to the player character using gendered titles or specific pronouns. Perhaps this pronoun selection will be for the benefit of other players, and will appear around characters when signing up for groups — like someone adding he/him, she/her, or they/them after their name on social media.

Finally, Wowhead cited an interview with World of Warcraft game director Ion Hazzikostas, who mentioned a desire to allow players to choose their character’s voices, saying it will likely come to World of Warcraft at some point — although it’s unclear if that will happen during Dragonflight’s lifetime.

These changes are key to creating a more inclusive World of Warcraft, enabling players to create avatars that better represent themselves or their loved ones.

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