Saturday, October 14, 2017

New Class: the Free Goblin

As opposed to goblins still enslaved by their Elfin masters. The Elves of in my setting are soulless jerks who are followed around by entourages of enslaved goblins and ensorcelled/infatuated humans ... not that goblins aren't soulless jerks too, once freed, as Elves and goblins come from the same stock. The Elves just get the good blood, and the goblins get the ugly-genes.

Blix (from Legend) was almost a Free Goblin when he got that
unicorn horn ... then the Devil showed up to remind him who's boss

I tend to think goblins are more interesting than orcs (don't get me wrong, I use a lot of orcs ... but the encounters with Goblin Kings and such tend to be more fun than with just another orc chieftain), so when contemplating adding another demi-human to my game--a semi-monstrous one, like a half-orc--I opted instead to write up the goblin as a new B/X demi-human class. Half-orcs might come later, but goblins are what I have now. So:

To play a free goblin, a character cannot have a charisma higher than 12. The free goblin's prime requisite is Dexterity; 13+ grants a 5% bonus to xp earned on an adventure, while 16+ grants a 10% bonus (non cumulative). Free Goblins may be Chaotic or Arcane of alignment.

                                                                                                 First      Second     Third     Fourth
Level 1 -- Scroggling -- 1d4 HD -- 0 XP                                --            --              --           --
Level 2 -- Goblin -- 2d4 HD -- 2500 XP                                1             --              --           --
Level 3 -- Hobgoblin -- 3d4 HD -- 5000 XP                          2             --              --           --
Level 4 -- Bugabear -- 4d4 HD -- 10,000 XP                         2            1               --           --
Level 5 -- Goblin King -- 5d4 HD -- 20,000 XP                    2            2                --           --
Level 6 -- Goblin King 6th Level -- 5d4+1 hp -- 40,000       2            2                1            --
Level 7 -- Goblin King 7th Level -- 5d4 +2 hp -- 80,000      3            2                1            --
Level 8 -- Goblin King 8th Level -- 5d4 +3 hp -- 200,000    3            2                2            1
Free Goblins may advance no higher than 8th level.

Goblins fight as clerics, save as thieves, may use any weapons (except those too large for a smaller creature to use, e.g. no two-handed swords, no longbows, no polearms), may wear only leather armor, but may cast spells while wearing armor. They may use shields, but cannot cast spells if their hands are full, i.e. wielding a weapon and a shield at the same time.

Being free goblins, freed from the yoke of slavery under the Elves, goblins hate Elves and may not adventure in their company; likewise, Elves will not associate with free goblins (other than perhaps by trying to re-enslave them).

Goblins have thief skills as a thief of the same level, and cast spells from their own spell list:

First Level
1) Detect Magic, 2) Protection from Law, Darkness, 3) Cause Fear, 4) Charm Person, 5) Hold Portal, 6) Sleep, 8) Ventriloquism, 9) Douse Lights, 10) Phantasmal Force, 11) Audible Glamer, 12) Change Self

Second Level
1) Blight (opposite of bless), 2) Silence 15', 3) Snake Charm, 4) Speak with Animals, 5) Detect Invisible, 6) ESP, 7) Invisibility, 8) Knock, 9) Locate Object, 10) Mirror Image, 11) Web, 12) Wizard Lock

Third Level
1) Cause Disease, 2) Animal Growth, 3) Curse, 4) Dispel Magic, 5) Haste, 6) Invisibility 10', 7) Protection from Normal Missiles, 8) Waterbreathing, 9) Hold Person, 10) Suggestion, 11) Slow, 12) Blindness

Fourth Level
1) Cause Serious Wounds, 2) Poison, 3) Sticks to Snakes, 4) Charm Monster, 5) Confusion, 6) Dimension Door, 7) Hallucinatory Terrain, 8) Massmorph, 9) Polymorph Self, 10) Polymorph Other 11) Wall of Fire, 12) Wizard Eye

At 5th level, goblins reach Name Level--Goblin Kings--and if they construct a labyrinth (i.e. a dungeon), they will gain 4-24 goblin followers. These are normal goblins (1-1 HD), and they will do as commanded only if cajoled, bullied, or bribed by the Goblin King. They always have Morale 7, regardless of treatment by the Goblin King or the deaths of their fellows, and are a generally unruly and surly lot. They may be replaced by referee fiat.

Goblin Kings also gain two abilities, first they can fill their labyrinth with magical tricks, creating one per week--these tricks can virtually be anything, but must be worked out with the referee. Secondly, Goblin Kings gain the ability to transform human infants or children in to 1st level Free Goblins, a process that takes one year.

Goblin Kings don't automatically gain a potato in their pants,
but they certainly ought to construct a magical codpiece

I wrote the Free Goblin class to reach "name level" quickly, i.e. 5th, to let people get into the domain game quickly, with their goblin followers and their ability to construct labyrinths/dungeons--and also to keep goblins weak compared to other demi-humans and especially humans. I wouldn't personally be put off by it when rolling up a character, but I wouldn't be surprised if it put others off.

Alas, despite my constantly pointing out to my players that they can roll up Free Goblins, none have yet taken me up on that offer. They haven't seen the rules (having evinced no interest), so I don't know if these just seem like weakling characters, or if my current group just isn't interested in playing creepy goblins. So I don't have any free goblin feats to report on.

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