Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Care and Feeding of Warriors, the column dedicated to arms, fury and protection warriors. Despite repeated blows to the head from dragons, demons, Old Gods and whatever that thing over there was, Matthew Rossi will be your host.
The game's history shows us that racial abilities have always been a subject of contention. Since warriors are at present the only class that all 13 races can play (pandaren can't be DK's, worgen and goblins can't be monks) we're the only class that has to consider all racials. Some racials are stronger in PvE than PvP, and the inverse is also true. Still others (Arcane Torrent, Stoneform) are fairly good for both. I have over the years race changed between various options, usually for purely aesthetic reasons, but at least twice I became a night elf entirely for the night elf racial Quickness, which is astonishingly good for a tanking warrior.
Now, does that mean you can't tank on anything but a night elf? No, not at all. For one thing, in our active mitigation system, hit and expertise racials are also fairly solid, but more to the point, no racial ability is so good that it must be chosen for any role. This isn't to say that some racials aren't fairly dominant in PvE or PvP, especially the latter - Every Man For Himself is always going to have a high representation among PvPing warriors. It would be foolishness to argue otherwise. My point is don't treat racials as must haves and force yourself to play a human if you'd rather play a gnome, or a forsaken when you want to play a troll.
Let's take a look at all the racials and see where we end up.