PDA

View Full Version : Humanoid races off the top of your head



Balor01
2013-07-18, 09:15 AM
Which humanoid races do you guys think should be represented in a "standard" DnD setting?

Which ones should not be left out or at least should exist in "standard" setting.

"You can let out any" is really not an option I am looking for.

thanks

Asmayus
2013-07-18, 09:20 AM
Elves, Dwarves, Halflings, Giants, gnomes and faries.

If you include goblins orks and trolls as humanoids then they should exist as well.

Thats all I can think of, really. Standard D&D tends to be pretty generic.

Eldan
2013-07-18, 09:21 AM
Humans. And, hm. I use either halflings or gnomes a lot, probably gnomes more often. Dwarves rarely. Sometimes elves, but usually with very non-standard fluff.

In a "normal" D&D setting, I don't like having too many intelligent creatures. It's different for things like Planescape, which connect many worlds, there it works and the more the better.

Beleriphon
2013-07-18, 09:21 AM
Which humanoid races do you guys think should be represented in a "standard" DnD setting?

Which ones should not be left out or at least should exist in "standard" setting.

"You can let out any" is really not an option I am looking for.

thanks

As players or monsters?

Scow2
2013-07-18, 09:29 AM
Elves, Humans, Dwarves, Halflings, Gnomes, Orcs, Goblins, Catfolk, and Gnolls off the top of my head.

Hyena
2013-07-18, 10:49 AM
I don't know which race should be represented in a standard setting, but I am sure that human should not. I am so tired of this "The most young and adaptable race" crap - it's literally everywhere and becomes tiring after a while. It's fantasy! I'm here for gnolls, dwarves, orcs and stuff - not for boring humans, that I see every day.

Mark Hall
2013-07-18, 11:13 AM
Demi-humans:
Humans, Dwarves, Elves, Gnomes, Halflings

Semi-humans:
Half-elves, half-orcs

Humanoids:
Orcs, Hobgoblins, Goblins, Kobolds, Bugbears, Gnolls, Ogres, Minotaurs.

Short version? Read Keep on the Borderlands. If it's in there, it should be represented in a "standard" D&D-like world. This doesn't mean non-standard is bad... Birthright is all sorts of awesome, and it leaves out gnomes and orcs, while radically changing the other races (halflings are refugees from the Shadow World), but if you're looking to play bog-standard D&D, that's what you should have.

Jay R
2013-07-18, 11:13 AM
I don't think a standard setting really exists - or at least I won't run one. Any universe I create will have be specific, slightly different from any other.

Having said that, I've always included humans, elves, dwarves, hobbits*, goblins, hobgoblins, orcs, ogres & all the giants. I once included the Fair Folk from the Prydain Chronicles. My earliest game included an inter-dimensional nexus, and I included a Vulcan NPC (who nobody ever encountered), as well as a Jedi knight (who somebody did).

[*Yes, hobbits, not halflings. The Tolkien estate can tell TSR and WotC not to sell them for money, but they can't stop me from using them for free.]

I've never used gnomes, gnolls, or tieflings, but if a player wanted a gnome PC, I'd probably allow it.

Hmmmm. This thread just gave me a new idea: I may set up a game with no humans, and the PCs must be an elf, dwarf, or gnome, and then introduce humans as a newly discovered NPC race, which is slowly taking over the lands held by the goblinoid races.

Yora
2013-07-18, 11:25 AM
I'd say anything that is both in Forgotten Realms and Greyhawk is basically the standard. Anything else is more or less uniquely setting specific.

Joe the Rat
2013-07-18, 11:43 AM
Humans, Elves, Dwarves.
Orcs and/or Goblins, Ogres or "Trolls", Giants.

I think that's the absolute minimum for "standard" fantasy. For D&D in particular, Halflings and Kobolds (and D&D Trolls) need added back. Then flesh out with Half-humans, Gnomes, Gnolls, and the full Goblinoid Group.

Arkhosia
2013-07-18, 11:14 PM
I would say elves and their variants, dwarves, humans, half-humans, halflings, gnomes, kobolds, goblins and their variants, orcs, gnolls, minotaurs, changelings, trolls, giants/titans, vampires, and were_____.

Yora
2013-07-19, 10:08 AM
I would say elves and their variants
Which? Dark Elves?

Arkhosia
2013-07-19, 11:42 AM
Which? Dark Elves?

The main types of elf variants used in the edition: drow in all, eladrin in 4e, you get the idea.

erikun
2013-07-19, 11:52 AM
In D&D? You're going to have people expect humans, elves, dwarves, halflings, gnomes, orcs, goblins, drow, and kobolds in pretty much any setting. You are pretty much guaranteed to expect ogres, trolls, gnolls, and illithids as well.

The fantasy races I first thing about? Humans, centaurs, faeries, merfolk, and some sort of psychic are the first ones that come to mind. Yes, thank you Xanth and Zelda for giving me expectations different from the norm. :smallamused:

GenericGuy
2013-07-19, 12:47 PM
The main types of elf variants used in the edition: drow in all, eladrin in 4e, you get the idea.

For me, the first thing I did when trying to make a standard D&D setting was take a hatchet to all the Elven sub-races. There are still elves who live in the woods, sail the seas, live underground, or live in deserts, but they're all called "elves" and have the same stats.

Jay R
2013-07-19, 03:24 PM
The main types of elf variants used in the edition: drow in all, eladrin in 4e, you get the idea.

For me, Drow are the primary-example of the weird new race created to make a setting non-standard.

But that won't apply to anyone who started playing D&D after they were created.

Arbane
2013-07-19, 06:27 PM
You have to have elves, mindflayers, warforged, and genasi. All the others are optional.

Leave humans out. They're SOOO boring! Average stats, average skills, average appearance.... and people have been telling stories about them for over 6000 years now. They're TOTALLY overplayed!

Arkhosia
2013-07-19, 08:02 PM
For me, Drow are the primary-example of the weird new race created to make a setting non-standard.

But that won't apply to anyone who started playing D&D after they were created.

I honestly didn't know drow weren't an original race. (Started in 4e)

Arbane
2013-07-20, 02:30 AM
I honestly didn't know drow weren't an original race. (Started in 4e)

Well, they're original, for some definition of original - Gygax & Co. came up with them, as "Evil Elves". They took the name from Norse myth, but that's about all.

Eldan
2013-07-20, 04:26 AM
Really depends on how you define original. I mean, there's black elves here and there in fantasy literature before D&D. Even Tolkien already had them. I can't think of any that live underground and worship spiders, though.

Yora
2013-07-20, 04:34 AM
No, they are just plain old wood elves who never followed the call to live in paradise.

Tengu_temp
2013-07-20, 05:17 AM
Tolkien's dark elves are not evil. Drow elves are partially based on much older material, though - Nordic elves and Unseelie fae.

As for the original question? Humans and maybe halflings. Everything else should be rare, special, and not necessarily available as a PC race.

Sith_Happens
2013-07-20, 05:21 AM
Warforged may not be "standard," but they should be.

Emmerask
2013-07-20, 05:25 AM
Dwarfs, the rest can be there or not i dont care.

VariSami
2013-07-20, 05:31 AM
Well, I had this one campaign with a custom setting in which the only races were halflings, gnomes and goblins...

On a more serious note (although I really did do that), these are the races I can see consistently working:
Humans (and most "humans with a hint of something": planetouched, Changelings, Shifters, etc.)
Elves (one race is enough; the drow are optional)
Dwarves (mostly one race; does anyone really even use duergar?)
Orcs (or Goblins - but these should really replace the half-orcs as the "go-to" race for socially distrusted brutes)
Warforged (since they occupy such an unique niche and can always be added as the results of magical craftsmanship)

Halflings occupy a special slot in my heart but I must allow myself to concede that they are not necessary and are too often portrayed as Kender.

Thrudd
2013-07-20, 05:35 AM
I don't know that there is such a thing as a race that "should" be in a D&D setting. The core D&D monster manuals provide so many races, I can't believe they really intend someone to use all of them at the same time.

Off the top of my head, the standard PC and monster races: Humans, Elves, Dwarves, Halflings, Gnomes (as of 3e)
Orcs, Goblinoids(gob, hobgob, bugb), Giants(incl Ogre and Troll), Kobolds, Gnolls


Drow are now very common, but I don't believe they are essential (I don't use them), especially if you don't have an Underdark type area in your setting. Same goes for Mindflayers, Githyanki/Githzerai, and all the subterranean variants of surface races (Svirfneblin, Duergar, Derro etc).

Aquatic variants of everything are likewise not essential. In general I don't like the infinite variants of every race present in all environments.

awa
2013-07-20, 07:46 PM
I disagree that warforged should be standard. While interesting they only fit in high magic settings. A warforged would stick out like a sore thumb in a large number of settings.
An elf can be altered a lot easier to fit in a much wider number of settings then can a warforged.

Sith_Happens
2013-07-21, 01:52 AM
I disagree that warforged should be standard. While interesting they only fit in high magic settings. A warforged would stick out like a sore thumb in a large number of settings.
An elf can be altered a lot easier to fit in a much wider number of settings then can a warforged.

Almost all D&D settings specifically, though, are in fact high enough magic for them (and woe become about 90% of groups whose DMs try to break the streak).

Mark Hall
2013-07-21, 02:03 AM
Almost all D&D settings specifically, though, are in fact high enough magic for them (and woe become about 90% of groups whose DMs try to break the streak).

Forgotten Realms? Arguably, though not the 1st-2nd edition presentation of them (maybe late 2nd)
Greyhawk? Nope.
Dark Sun? Nope.
Birthright? Nope.
Spelljammer? Sure, but since that's about magical flying spaceships, it would be hard to argue against them.
Dragonlance? Nope.
Council of Wyrms? Not really.

Now, I hear you argue "But most of these are connected by Wildspace, so if they're acceptable in Spelljammer, they're acceptable anywhere!"

Nope. Because Wildspace was optional for all those worlds.

cabbagesquirrel
2013-07-21, 03:12 AM
Humans: Because they're relatable. Boring maybe. But as you can see in Middle Earth and Westeros and a tonne of other settings, culture, geography and history can create very different experiences of what a Human can be.

Elves: One race of elves, and that's maximum. Treat them like humans, geography, history and all that stuff will make them different. But I can't stand having sun, moon, star, copper, wild, wood, flying, water breathing, half and half and all that junk. It's an elf, that's it. And yes this includes Drow.

Dwarf: They suffer less from the Elf's ability to subrace out, so just one dwarf race. Mine tend to look like Mul from Dark Sun, with beards being optional for both sexes.

Gnome/Halfling: It's a Hobbit. I don't want sneaky skinny Hobbit and Magic underground gem lover Hobbit. It's just a Hobbit.

That's it for PC races.

Optional races I put in if the player is insistant or it sounds cool.

Orcs as players, theyre thrown in together as a bestial race for the skyrim khajiit and argonian lovers. Something still human like but slightly different, some players like to play a green character or one with a tail.

warforged, but thats heavily dependant on setting. and theyre generally treated as a form of golem/homunculus.

my non player races tend to be based on real world myth but i wont get into that at present.

Kane0
2013-07-21, 05:47 AM
I usually have 3 standard humanoid options as common (or at least not rare) from humans, elves, dwarves, halflings and gnomes.

Then two savage/monstrous humanoids from orcs, various goblinoids, gnolls, lizardfolk, etc.

Then a sprinkling of intelligent monsters like giants, dragons, etc.

Anything not picked out might still be around, just not easy to find.

The Rose Dragon
2013-07-21, 06:38 AM
I would say humans, and humans only, but I've seen settings that take place after the extinction of humanity, so I can't even say that.

awa
2013-07-21, 02:46 PM
Forgotten Realms? Arguably, though not the 1st-2nd edition presentation of them (maybe late 2nd)
Greyhawk? Nope.
Dark Sun? Nope.
Birthright? Nope.
Spelljammer? Sure, but since that's about magical flying spaceships, it would be hard to argue against them.
Dragonlance? Nope.
Council of Wyrms? Not really.

Now, I hear you argue "But most of these are connected by Wildspace, so if they're acceptable in Spelljammer, they're acceptable anywhere!"

Nope. Because Wildspace was optional for all those worlds.
dark sun and raven loft were the one i was specifically thinking about as being not warforged friendly

Alex12
2013-07-21, 04:30 PM
Humans and human-derived (and yes, this includes Elans, even though they aren't Humanoid. Everyone forgets about them). Most human-derivatives are the result of tampering, and live either within human society, or wherever they were created.
Elves, one variety. Other types are typically the result of some kind of tampering, and aren't numerous enough to be anything like a society. Elves can interbreed with humans.
Dwarves or kobolds, pick one.
Orcs and goblins. Related, but different. Probably due to magical tampering by an evil warlord way back when.

Other races tend to be rare or one-offs.