Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Goblins, Southern Marches Style


Goblins - These short, large-eyed, yellow skinned little hominids are the most often encountered sapient species (outside of humans) in the Southern Marches Microsetting. 

Purpose - I was looking to make a more “real” feeling version of goblins. Early hominids with boundless energy, a whistle and clicks language, and an animistic tribal culture just seemed like they’d be fun to play.  I also liked the pretty obvious Native Americans vs Colonial parallels. Bonus:They also make for an interesting halfling replacement.

Appearance - Goblins stand typically between 3.5 to 4 feet tall. Both sexes are covered in a thick layer of soft, blonde body-hair; these hairs tend to skirt the line between “hair” and “fur”. Their skin has a faint yellowish cast which tans to a deep, leathery goldenrod in sunlight. The toothy grins of goblins show an extra set of canine teeth. Long hands and feet combine with abundant energy to give goblins a springing, loping gait. 
They communicate in a fully developed language of whistles and clicks, and are incapable of human speech. (Humans are in turn incapable of speaking goblin, though both races can learn the other’s language. [Think Han and Chewie as an example of this]).
Though usually grouped towards the southwestern region of Cronnon, individual goblins can be found anywhere. 

Descriptors - Despite being shorter than most humans, the goblins' leaping movements actually give them a quicker pace. With highly tuned reflexes and senses, goblins are well-suited to surviving in a world that’s much larger than they.

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Strength - 2-6 /10
Quickness - 6-10 /10
Intelligence - 2-10 /10
Manual Dexterity - 2-10 /10
Rate of Movement - Slightly quicker than most humans.


Ecology - Most goblins in the region come from the Blasgraya (human equivalent of a whip-poor-will like spitting and whistling goblin word) tribes. These tribes have been in the area for only a generation or two longer than the New Hope settlers. The goblins ancestral homeland is said to be somewhere far to the East over the “salted waters.” Most of these tribes lead a semi-nomadic hunter-gatherer existence. Some particular tribes are violently xenophobic and territorial, but most offer a strange mix of caution and curiosity.

Goblin dietary needs run slightly more carnivorous than the typical human diet. Fattened human-raised livestock is considered a great delicacy. Wild feasts and revelry are common cultural trait between the settlers and the gobos. (Though alcohol tends to be a bit tougher on goblin physiology. Goblin hangovers are terrible things to behold.)

The goblins had natively developed a complex but technologically neolithic culture before interacting with the New Hope settlers. Now the technological level of some tribes rivals that of the settlers (though metal objects remain a relative rarity).

Other non-Blasgraya Gobblins have been very occasionally encountered. These tribes seem to have widely varying cultures and levels of aggression, but all thus far have been similarly neolithic.

Questions? Comments? Cliches? Post 'em Below.