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Elder Tale features different races (種族 shuzoku), each with its own strengths and weaknesses. There are eight playable races, known in game lore as the "Eight Good Races": Humans, Elves, Dwarves, Half-Alvs, Werecats, Wolf Fangs, Fox Tails, and Race of Rituals. Each race provides its own set of Skills, much like Classes and Subclasses.
See also: Into the Theldesia 1 (Humans and Half Alvs), Into the Theldesia 2 (Wolf Fangs and Elves), Into the Theldesia 3 (Dwarves and Werecats), and Into the Theldesia 4 (Fox Tails and Ritians) for information about the races given by the TRPG.
- Main article: Human
This race is similar to humans in the real world. Humans in Elder Tale appear with a variety of skin, eye, and hair colors. Their ability stats are well balanced, making them the most commonly-chosen race.
- Main article: Elf
A long-lived race that is found among forests and ancient ruins around the world. This race excels in archery and has an advantage in terms of willpower-related stats. They are characterized physically by their long, pointy ears.
- Main article: Dwarf
Well-known to be the core workforce in the mountains and underground mines, Dwarves are a humanoid race with a strong physical build. Dwarves have high levels of stamina and magic resistance. Other ability stats lean them toward Fighter types and Ironsmiths. They are characterized by their short stature, which ranges from 100cm to 140cm. Because of this, players that chose Dwarf as their race have difficulty adjusting after the Catastrophe, due to the drastic difference in between their in-game character's height and their height in the real world. Typically speaking, female Dwarves don't look strong in their appearance, instead looking more plump and ball-like in body shape.
- Main article: Half-Alv
The race of Alvs was entirely destroyed by an ancient war, but they historically intermarried with Humans, and half-Alvs are occasionally born into a Human family due to the emergence of recessive Alv genes. Physically, they are almost identical to Humans. The only way to differentiate a Half-Alv from a Human is with a strange emblem found on Half-Alvs' tongues. They have a very high affinity with ancient magic and ruins. This race seems to receive a storyline bonus when entering dungeons and participating in campaigns.
- Main article: Werecat
One of the races of beast-men, they have feline-like characteristics. These characteristics give them high stats in dexterity and senses. Physically, they have cat ears and facial fur but not a tail. Werecats are popular among cat fans in "Elder Tale," and some guilds restrict their membership exclusively to characters of this race. According to the storyline in the game, all beast-man races were magically created to combat monsters, so they are subject to discrimination in some countries while others treat them with respect.
- Main article: Wolf Fang
One of the beast-men races, they are hominid with thick, heavy hair. Through intense fighting or bleeding, they may call forth their wolf-like characteristics during combat, thus receiving major boosts in strength and footing and gaining golden eyes, wolf ears, and a phantom tail. The Wolf Fang race is popular among dog-loving fans in Elder Tale.
- Main article: Fox Tail
One of the beast-men races, this race does not exhibit physical enhancement but instead excels in Magic. However to offset their extreme ability growth, they are penalized by "randomly losing a skill/technique/spell from the main class skill list when leveling." This negative characteristic makes the race one that's rarely chosen by players. Physically, they have fox ears and phantom tails (the number of tails is dependent on the character's level). Both can be hidden from sight by the innate power of the Fox Tail race.
- Main article: Ritian
A race that is shrouded in mystery. It is known for high magical power and immense amounts of knowledge. They have many tattoo-like emblems and patterns on their bodies called "Runes." Because their HP is bizarrely low, almost no players choose this race.
- Main article: Alv
Alvs appear in Elder Tale lore, but no longer exist and are not a playable race. According to the game's history, this race became extinct through a war with Humans, Elves, and Dwarves a long time ago. 
- Main article: Ancients
Ancients are Landers with special abilities that put them on par with or, sometimes, even surpass Adventurers. However, their origins continue to be a mystery, and there are currently two known ways to create an Ancient: the first is from birth, the second is through some sort of ritual.
- Main article: Traveler
Like the Adventurers who were brought to Theldesia from another world because of the Catastrophe, this race was brought over by the same event. However, members of this race did not have physical bodies to begin with, so they had to take bodies that already existed in Theldesia (either accounts that were inactive at the time of the Catastrophe or the bodies of monsters). This race is split into two factions, Fools and Genius, with the purpose of gathering Empathiom (memories) for their home world.
The Marten Tribe (貂人族?) is a Lander-only race that, while are not included among the Eight Good Races that Adventurers can choose, are also not considered evil demi-human monsters. Those of the Marten Tribe are able to practice a type of magic that gives them human appearances. Faa Diu, a girl accompanying Krusty in China, is of this race.
- ↑ NHK's official Log Horizon website (nhk.or.jp)