I wanted to start a thread to answer the questions from Josh's email. Sorry if this was covered in anther thread and I missed it.
If not let's hive him a hand and offer him our opinions on these. )
I also tried to offer a few numbers to easily quantify the results.
Do the races and their subtypes feel distinct?
In a scale of 1 to 10 I would give the variety an 9.
Proportions: make it very easy to read at first glance the race of each character.
Faces: distinct enough to grant each race and subrace it's own personality.
Clothes: while it would have been great to have different clothes for each race, the different colors make a good difference between races and subraces.
Overall, in my opinion, in the character creation screen, the variety was properly achieved. While, as I said, different clothing might have improved it farther, I feel the budget for this might have been better spent on something else.
Do their models and textures appeal to you?
I would give the character models a 7 out of 10.
Clothes: shaders and texture both look very good to me.
Faces: here's the only aspect I felt could use a bit of improvement. The default face models look a bit generic IMHO, especially if you compare them with the great artworks you previously shown.
For example, the sketch of the Orlan concentrating to read an object, inspired to me a very distinct fantasy world. The game model lost a bit in translation this impression. Of course, I might be subjective here.
Small note: the two toned skin from the Orlan description is not exactly visible in the model, but there might be just my small laptop screen here.
Overall: If possible to add more personality to the character faces without big changes to the editor it would be great. If not, I would leave them as they are: Elder Scrolls is notorious to have some really ugly character models since the down of time and nobody seemed to care.
Do their bonuses and special abilities seem worthwhile?
I would give the bonuses and special abilities a 9 out of 10.
Bonuses: IMHO they do a good job in showing what each race is all about.
Special abilities: they seem big enough to add a special flavor for each subrace.
Humans might befit from a bit of variety here, but you probably you are already working on it.
Overall, the races give to me the impression is of a deep and rich world and I believe this is the the most important thing they need to offer.
There it is, I hope it helps.