In many ways Mekkatorque and Thermaplugg are defined by their relationship with each other. It’s difficult to talk about Thermaplugg without talking about Mekkatorque. They have a very clear cut and close relationship as antagonists. Gelbin is the hero and Sicco is the villain.
There have been some hints recently that Thermaplugg is attempting to clean up Gnomeregan and cure the leprosy himself. I think that giving Thermaplugg more depth and development is great. Thermaplugg’s actions inform us, as players, first hand of the notorious flaws of the gnomish race, in the same way that that Mekkatorque shows us their greatest strengths. Seeing these two characters in active conflict is exponentially more effective at defining ‘gnome-ness’ than any out of character write up could ever be.
In order for this style of storytelling to work we need both sides to be developed. Both characters to be interesting, engaging and little bit relatable. Thermaplugg being undeveloped undermines Mekkatorque’s development. Warcraft primarily tells it’s story though villains. We spend as much, if not more, time interacting with enemies than we do allied heroes. Confronting evil is how our characters interact with the world and it is how we as players learn to understand life on Azeroth.
I have joked that I would like to see Sicco get redeemed, saved, or even, turn out to have been the good guy all along. It would be fun for me, but it would be bad for gnomes in general. We need him to show us what the moral, ideological, and conceptual failings of gnomes. I feel like currently Thermaplugg is perceived by a lot of people as Stupid Evil. I hope that these new lore hints are leading to something that put an end to that perception.