View Full Version : Crimbuls [Race]

2007-02-20, 07:56 PM
If possible, I could use some feedback on the balance for this race. This is partly as an experiment into a Tiny-sized player race but also a part of a campaign I'm working on. The crimbul primarily survives and thrives on the goodwill of other races by making themselves useful and willing to take care of menial jobs in return for food and protection.


A miniature offshoot of the goblinoids, Crimbuls are tiny, eloquent creatures and one of the few goblinoid species accepted in most societies. They are welcomed by many races for their keen eyesight and dextrous hands, something that makes them excellent craftsmen of fine detail. Their rich oral history and willingness to get along with larger, tougher creatures, along with a naturally endearing appearance has ensured that there is always a place for crimbuls. This may not necessarily be a socially high or even clean place, but at least it is a place.
Personality: Civilised crimbuls tend to adopt the values and habits of their foster peoples, although centuries of tribal behaviour have given crimbuls a deep bred attachment to their own kind; in matters of life or death, crimbuls come first. They are generally quite open to the values and opinions of others, if only to get what they want. Tribal crimbuls are a touch more closeted, potentially welcoming non-threatening strangers but still quite readily attacking an armed band of 'civilised' people striding into their villages. Both forms of crimbuls value fine jewellery and other items of comfort, though will usually try to attend to their immediate needs first.
Physical Description: Crimbuls stand at a mere one and a half to two feet tall with distinctive pale yellow goblinoid skin. Their more bestial features are slightly less pronounced than their taller bretheren and their abnormally large heads and eyes give them child-like proportions. This has often led to other humanoid races regarding them with a degree of sympathy and endearment. Their hair is typically jet black but occasionally dark brown, worn in a variety of fashions depending on the culture they are inhabiting. They prefer comfortable, well-made clothing that can allow them to display a modest degree of wealth.
Crimbuls can live to over fifty years of age and mature quickly, reaching reproductive capability after five. Savage crimbuls rely on their wit and numbers, much as the goblins. Civilised crimbuls may rein in their reproductive tendencies, though there are usually still plenty because of their relatively small demands for food and shelter. Crimbuls live short, brilliant lives.
Relations: Crimbuls are almost as ubiquitous as humans, by their very nature ingratiating themselves with any races they find themselves in contact with. Some races are more accepting than others, however; crimbuls cannot always find purchase in a dwarven society unless there have already been crimbul servants there for many decades. Their kinship with goblins has been known to cause problems. Most races favour their attention to fine detail, a saving grace for them in many of the more 'barbaric' communities such as those of other goblinoids or orcs. There is a slight degree of distrust for such an ever-present race, however, as they do make excellent spies. Within their own people, crimbuls are usually trusted and help one another out, a habit born of centuries of tribal existence.
Although crimbuls can breed true with goblins (but not hogoblins or bugbears) this does not generally happen, as the offspring are crimbuls. Goblins typically look down upon their lesser brothers and would rather give birth to true goblin kin.
Alignment: Unlike the other goblinoid races, crimbuls tend towards a non-harmfully self-serving neutral alignment. There is a great deal of deviation, especially depending on the prevailing attitude of the society at hand, but most crimbuls have few illusions as to serving any higher power than themselves and their own.
Crimbul Lands: Strictly speaking, there are no solely crimbul lands. Savage crimbuls have small villages and claim independent territory, yet this is frequently contested by other goblinoid tribes. Civilised crimbuls tend to inhabit the societies of other developed races, usually establishing small 'crimbultowns' within a select few houses in a town (or streets in a city) where the various extended families of the crimbuls live in close proximity to one another.
Religion: Crimbuls regularly adopt the religion of whatever society they infiltrate, tending towards divinities of stealth, trickery and entertainment.
Language: Crimbuls speak a dialect of Goblin and write in Dwarven amongst themselves, though they also adopt the native tongue of whichever society they infiltrate and use it for general speech.
Adventurers: Crimbuls are not often taken to adventuring as a career, although there is a strong musical and poetic bent to their 'civilised' society and a number of crimbuls may become bards and travel between towns acting as part messenger, part entertainer and part spy. Crimbuls adventure for the same reasons that members of their parent society would.

Abilities: -4 Strength, +2 Wisdom, +2 Charisma: The slight frames of crimbuls do not lend themselves to heavy labour or combat, but amongst other races this is made up for by their sharp senses and endearing appearance.
Tiny: As Tiny creatures, crimbuls enjoy a +2 bonus to attack and AC and a +8 bonus to Hide checks, but must use smaller weapons than even gnomes (medium-sized weapons cannot be wielded and small weapons require special training to wield in one hand). Their lifting and carrying limits are half those of Medium-sized characters.
Crimbul base speed is 15ft, climb speed is 15ft.
Low-light vision: Crimbuls can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight and similat conditions of poor illumination They retain the ability to distinguish colour and detail.
+8 racial bonus on Climb checks: Crimbuls are used to climbing as their main method of getting around and are born with fingers suitable for grasping.
+2 racial bonus to Appraise and Craft checks involving fine detail, or to produce toxins.
+2 racial bonus to Spot checks: Crimbuls have sharp eyes.
+2 racial bonus to Handle Animal and Ride checks: Crimbuls have a long tradition of using other, faster creatures to get around. They are particularly well known for bringing some of the Small monstrous spiders from their home forests into the tamed world and training them as mounts.
Bonus Weapon Proficiencies: Crimbul tooth blade, blowpipe, halfling throwing stone and kukhri. Crimbuls focus on weapons they can actually wield, particularly those that can be poisoned or provide some range.
Automatic Languages: Native plus Goblin. Bonus Languages: Any, save Druidic and other secret languages.
Favoured Class: Bard. A multiclass Crimbul's bard class does not count when determining whather he suffers an XP penalty for multiclassing. Crimbuls rely on wit, charm and skill to survive in the civilised world, being second only to humans in their ubiquity.

Crimbul tooth blade: Diminuitive Weapon. Cost: 5gp. Damage: 1 + Poison. Critical: x3. Weight: 1/2lb. Type: Exotic Piercing.
The tooth blade was originally made from the teeth of snakes and other venomous creatures, but the present-day tooth blade is typically made from iron. The blade is hollow, containing a valve and chamber with enough space for 5 doses of poison. On successful attacks the valve opens and a dose of poison is injected into the opponent. Refilling the venom chamber is a full round action that provokes an attack of opportunity.

2007-02-20, 09:27 PM
I like them.

There are some who will say that a tiny race with spellcasting bonus stats will be at least an la 1. I don't know that I agree.

A crimbul Sorcerer or Cleric might be a pretty powerful secret weapon and damned hard to hit.


I definitely like them though.

2007-02-20, 09:35 PM
You'd be amazed just how annoying a max carry weight of 30lbs* can be, even if most of the items for your character are 1/10th normal weight. Tiny and -4 Strength, bigger disadvantage than most might believe.

*For a crimbul with 6 str. Light load is 10lbs.