Gnome Niche Lost


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I kind of said this in a previous thread, but I feel the Gnomes have been majorly shafted in this Release.
Essentially, the Gnomes were unique in a big way in previous releases, as were other races. However, now they are not the only SMALL race with a CHA bonues and STR penalty and a BARD Favored Class. In fact, a halfling outperforms them in every class but Sorcerer and maybe Wizard now (naturally exclding pure martial classes that neither are extremely suited to, though the halfer probably still des better). Please, put halflings back, and give them some other favored class than bard (not wizard though... I cannot suggest another. Maybe Ranger?).
Halflings need their old +2 Int, not Cha. They are crafty and clever. They are not, as people have suggested, based upon Tolkein's hobbits (TSR lost that case) except for hairy feet and small stature. They are different. I hope people will agree that the Int bonus fit the Halfling's quick-thinking, plans-on-the-fly nature.


Yeah I got to agree in part, Gnomes have a hard enough time being their own thing, they already have half their abilities borrowed from the Dwarf, so having the halfling horn in on their territory is a problem for me.


Basically, they finally became truly separate and got important unique things (especially the Cha bonus). Then the halfling comes in and says, "NO!" I liked the Gnomes the way they were, and I don't want another race to go into their territory mechanically or flavorfully; that doesn't happen to other races, and we had them unique and in a nice niche.
Please, put the halfling back.


It is my personal belief, based mostly on nostalgia, that favored classes should be based on traditional D&D archetypes. The favored classes of dwarves should be fighter or rogue, since those were their multiclass options (not cleric, dwarves couldn't be clerics until 2nd edition). The favored classes of elves should be wizard or sorcerer (sorcerer being more a subclass of wizard IMHO). The favored classes of gnomes should be illusionist or sorcerer. The favored classes of half-orcs are probably fine as is (since we don't have an assassin base class anymore, which sucks). Halflings should have fighter and rogue.


Well, I agree...except I am coming from the angle that Halflings are just better with Int rather than Cha, maybe its because I often have cannibalistic and bloodthirsty halflings in my games that aren't that charismatic, cute, or lovable.


Lord Tataraus wrote:
Well, I agree...except I am coming from the angle that Halflings are just better with Int rather than Cha, maybe its because I often have cannibalistic and bloodthirsty halflings in my games that aren't that charismatic, cute, or lovable.

I guess that depends on your paradigm for halflings. Tolkienesque halflings I would think are quite charming, although I don't think there is any justification for saying they are any more charming than men. If you think of Beltar every time you think of halflings, well, I can kind of see your point. Personally, I always saw Beltar as more of a parody of halfling PLAYERS, but that's just me.

For the record, I am not totally on board with the whole stat adjustment "fix." A lot of them seem forced, like the half-orc +2 to Wisdom (don't orcs have -2 to Wisdom?). I think there are other ways to balance a race than by simply offering stat mods.

Liberty's Edge

*shrug* To each his own, I suppose. I prefer for halflings to have a Charisma bonus, though admittedly I prefer gnomes to have an Intelligence bonus. I like the new direction for gnomes (fey creatures stuck in the mortal world), though I also liked the late 2nd edition direction for them too (inventive crafters with a love of new things).

The way I use gnomes in my Ravenloft homebrew basically makes them fulfill the same niche that Jews did in medieval Europe: they have a private culture and religion that isn't welcoming to outsiders, they are regarded as wealthy and slightly sinister even though most of their income goes toward keeping their homes and communities safe and private through heavy taxation, they're regarded as "crafty" in every sense of the word, and when they do interact with outsiders they're surprisingly charming and affable, with an emphasis on dark humor and wit. They're somewhat less scapegoat-y than Jews of the era, though.

Still, I think that the way gnomes are portrayed in Pathfinder, especially in the recent Gazetteer, makes them cool as hell. My players seem to think so too: there are three gnome PCs in my current playtest game.

Jeremy Puckett


Gnomes had a niche?

All so nothing should ever be done just for Nostalgias sake.


Gnomes deserve the INT bonus and need favored class wizard, I get the feeling that many people want halflings to have a INT bonus because its mechanically better than CHA, not for any real aesthetic reason. Gnomes are incredibly more dynamic characters in my regard, their only real weakness is that WOTC stuffed a blunderbuss with abilities and shot it at the Gnome. Its abilities are not great for any class. the bonus to INT really helps give them an edge (now if only we could get some sort of exchange for Gnome arcane spellcasters racial cantrips, really not useful at ALL)


Gnomes should get a Wisdom bonus. And their favored class should be gnija! You gnow it's true!


Viktor_Von_Doom wrote:
Gnomes had a niche?

Illusionist/thief or illusionist/cleric. But that was quite a while ago...


I kind of like them with a Cha bonus. Since every caster class has at leasy 1 ability based on Cha (though I hope this isn't true anymore for Wiz and Clr domains), Gnomes are decent at every type of magic. The problem wih Gnomes is that they don't have the best mechanical bonuses, they have some fo the best RPing possibilities. Speaking with burrowing mammals? That s***'s bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S.
Gnomes have always been torn between curiously innovative crafters and tricksy fey magicians. PAthfinder chose one for them and I like it. Gnomes should keep the Cha bonus; it fits wih their current incarnation's innate magical talent.
Halflings are good at planning-on-the-run and are very clever. As I said, they ARE NOT Hobbits (I think I pointed out that TSR lost that lawsuit). Please, halflings are no more pretty or manipulative than other races; they are cleverer.

Sovereign Court

Gnome Ninja wrote:
Ithey are cleverer.

wouldn't that be wisdom?


I love hobbits.
But i don't think they should get an Int bonus. Nor a Cha bonus.
I don't see them as more clever or charming than other races.
But resourceful, yes.
Leave them with Str-2 and Dex+2 and give them some options to be resourceful, like a bonus to some skills, like +1 skill point per level, a talent or a luck factor (not only to saving throws).

About their origins, officially they are not hobbits. They used to be, with the typical subraces (harfoot, stout, tallfellow), but they can't legally be hobbits anymore. Let's say they are undercover hobbits.
So they have been blended with kenders to become slender halflings.
I don't personally like the way they are portraited in the Player's Handbook, where they look too much like gnomes, both small and slender. I don't see halflings as leprechauns.
I looove the way Pathfinder presents them, back to the source, with the sacred hairy feet. Lem. Yes, that's tolkienish hobbits. But that's the way many of us want them to be. As a matter of fact, Paizo won me just with Lem's picture.
I like them paradoxal, homebound but adventurous, down to earth but curious, lawful to their community but chaotic by nature. Like domestic cats, who like to take an errand from time to time, enjoying freedom, but only to come back to their comfy home afterwards.
This being said, a race doesn't have to be a rigid stereotype, there should be variants of cultures, like savage halflings (cf. Dark Sun), nomadic halflings (like they seem to be in 4th edition), wood halflings, and so on.
Yes, i love hobbits :)

* * *

For gnomes, well...

The problem is to decide if they are from elemental or faerie roots.
An elemental origin links them to earth, like they used to be, closer to dwarves, and also fits the tinkerer archetype.
A faerie origin, on the other hand, breaks their chains with the past and makes them mystical, closer to leprechauns, brownies and the little people.
In any case, Int and Wis can fit. Int for the tinkerer and faerie trickster. And Wis for the elementalist or druidic caster.
I never liked the bonus to Con. They are not dwarves.
D&D4 seems to take the faerie route. It seems Pathfinder too, at least judging from the iconic druid gnomette (Lidi ?).
To solve the dilemna, it is easy :
- Basic gnome (urban, crafty) : Str -2, Int+2, Crafting +2, Profession +2.
- Forest gnome (nature, druidic) : Str -2, Wis +2, Knowledge/Nature +2, Survival +2.

Sovereign Court

The Pathfinder gnome niche is "the weird kid". They have odd obsessions, they talk with animals (god, I wish they got speak with plants, in addition), they look different than the other good humanoids, they have strange attitudes and a culture that is even more insular and secretive than the elves.

Which is why a Charisma bonus just *boggles* my mind. I get why they keep it - to enhance backwards compatibility - but it seems to be a combination of being a holdover from the days when their niche was "the adolescent dwarf", and a shoehorn into the bard favored class. Bard as a favored class makes some amount of sense if you just look at the abilities rather than the name. Spontaneous casting, performance abilities, strange knowledge - all very Fey and First Worldly. mmm, Sorceror works as a favored class, too. Of course, *I'd* make their favored class Sorceror (Fey) just to keep it on message, but I think most people who willingly choose a gnome are already on board with the concept. A charisma bonus makes sense for them mechanically, but I'm still trying to reconcile being the "weird kid who is strangely compelling" with the more traditional interpretation of Charisma.

As for halflings, they're described as being strong-willed, but don't get a Wisdom bonus (something that would actually contribute to a high WILL save.) I can see them as bards *based on the name*, but the abilities don't entirely mesh with what I'm reading PF Halflings as. Rogue is a tradition going back to Bilbo Baggins, but the second favored class? That's a tricky one; their flavor in the PF book would imply that many of the NPC classes would be appropriate, but those aren't exactly good for adventurin'. Barbarian would be good for a larf, but... I dunno. I guess I really would need to know what their culture was like before they become slaves and quiet minorities among the humans. The discussion of wanderlust actually makes me think of Ranger *a bit* - if you're spending a lot of time on the road in *D&D*, you're going to end up facing a lot of wilderness hazards. So why NOT learn rangerin' to help you walk your little barefeet from Cheliax to the World Wound? Then, not only would the Wisdom bonus make sense with the fluff, it would help support the second favored class.


See, but Pathfinder has changed Charisma's purpose in my mind a little, based upon the fact that Charisma is used in every casting class, one way or another:

  • Bard - Nearly Everything
  • Cleric - Channel Energy, Domain DCs
  • Druid - Wild Empathy, Domain DC if they choose Domain Nature Bond
  • Paladin - Nearly Everything
  • Ranger - Wild Enpathy (caster with least Cha usage)
  • Sorcerer - Nearly Everything
  • Wizard - School DCs
    While I have been arguing that School and Domain DCs should be Int or Wis based (respectively), I see how Paizo working in Cha as the Casting Stat. And I kinda see their point: in much of fantasy, magic is at least partly governed by the user's force of personality, their personal menatal ability to force their will on things, and the ability that seems closest to that is Cha. Gnomes are supposed to be like faeries: very innately magical, and that is exactly what is represented by the Cha bonus. I like that. Again, though, halflings should not have a Cha bonus; there's nothing innately magical about that.
    I aggree with a lot of the people here that Gnomes should move away from Dwarves though, like the Hatred and Defensive Training abilities. They don't face the same enemies Dwarves do anymore, so I think these could be replaced with something more unique.

  • Sovereign Court

    Gnome Ninja wrote:


    I aggree with a lot of the people here that Gnomes should move away from Dwarves though, like the Hatred and Defensive Training abilities. They don't face the same enemies Dwarves do anymore, so I think these could be replaced with something more unique.

    I dunno. Hatred of Kobolds (which is *really* what Humanoid (Reptilian) means) and Goblins (which is *really* what Humanoid (Goblinoid) means) still make a lot of sense. They're all small races that want out of the way forested areas in which to live; there's going to be some serious competition for territory and resources.

    Defensive Training? Weeeeeell, yeah, I can see a point in removing that. The only giants a gnome is likely to face out of the gate are Trolls.


    If the goal is to move races back into their more architypical modes then gnomes should just be more elemental dwarves. In the old (white box)days (before someone decided to make kobolds into lizards), dwarves, gnomes, and kobolds were all related. I guess those days are pretty much gone. And I'm not sure if Pathfinder is intent on recapturing them or not.

    My thought would be that gnomes should get bonuses to CON and WIS. Favored classes should be illusionist and cleric.

    CJ

    Shadow Lodge

    I'll probably get lynched for saying this but the real problem is there really isn't much need for a third 'small' race. Dwarfs, and Gnomelings... just too much overlap here.

    Now Goblins, Goblins and Gnomes would make a lot of sense. Goblins could steal the thunder from the halflings. Personally they have a lot more interesting story.

    That's an aside...

    I like gnomes with the CHA bonus and favored class sorcerer/ bard.

    Halflings... DEX/ INT is sort of the perfect storm to make them the ultimate Rogues. I never considered halflings as casters much and agree having their second favored class be Ranger would be good.

    -- Dennis


    0gre wrote:

    I like gnomes with the CHA bonus and favored class sorcerer/ bard.

    Halflings... DEX/ INT is sort of the perfect storm to make them the ultimate Rogues. I never considered halflings as casters much and agree having their second favored class be Ranger would be good.

    YES

    That is exactly what should happen. [On a side not, Half-Orcs should have Druid not Cleric as a FC]


    Gnome Ninja wrote:
    0gre wrote:

    I like gnomes with the CHA bonus and favored class sorcerer/ bard.

    Halflings... DEX/ INT is sort of the perfect storm to make them the ultimate Rogues. I never considered halflings as casters much and agree having their second favored class be Ranger would be good.

    YES

    That is exactly what should happen. [On a side not, Half-Orcs should have Druid not Cleric as a FC]

    Aye.

    I like gnomes as they are now. It's the halfling race that needs a teensy bit of tweaking.
    I support the suggestion above.

    Sovereign Court

    I somewhat support it, I agree ranger/rogue should be halfling classes, but Dex/Wis makes a much better fit and keeps them from being mini elves (which if they have dex/int then they are exactly)


    lastknightleft wrote:
    I somewhat support it, I agree ranger/rogue should be halfling classes, but Dex/Wis makes a much better fit and keeps them from being mini elves (which if they have dex/int then they are exactly)

    I'd agree with Dex/Wis, but there are already two races with Ws bonuses, and that would make one with Int, one with Cha and THREE with Wis. However, if Paizo would give the Half-Orc a +2 Con instead of Wis, that would be nice.

    Sovereign Court

    Gnome Ninja wrote:
    lastknightleft wrote:
    I somewhat support it, I agree ranger/rogue should be halfling classes, but Dex/Wis makes a much better fit and keeps them from being mini elves (which if they have dex/int then they are exactly)
    I'd agree with Dex/Wis, but there are already two races with Ws bonuses, and that would make one with Int, one with Cha and THREE with Wis. However, if Paizo would give the Half-Orc a +2 Con instead of Wis, that would be nice.

    Agreed, but then we'd have three with con


    lastknightleft wrote:
    Gnome Ninja wrote:
    lastknightleft wrote:
    I somewhat support it, I agree ranger/rogue should be halfling classes, but Dex/Wis makes a much better fit and keeps them from being mini elves (which if they have dex/int then they are exactly)
    I'd agree with Dex/Wis, but there are already two races with Ws bonuses, and that would make one with Int, one with Cha and THREE with Wis. However, if Paizo would give the Half-Orc a +2 Con instead of Wis, that would be nice.
    Agreed, but then we'd have three with con

    But traditionally, many fantasy races are more tough than humans; not that many are more wise.

    EDIT: Actually, no. Many are. But game-wise, EVERYONE can use more Con, and it's only extremely vital to Barbarians (and arguably Sorcerers). Not true for Wis: it's vital to at least 3, but useless to some.


    I have this thing where i think that every party shud have a small PC.
    This mostly boils down to me playing the Smallfoke(Gnomes, Halflings, Kobolds, ext)and the way I tend to play Halflings like Kinder. Their smart but have this way of doing things that tends to put others off(it might have something to do with things going missing when their around). But even when I think of The Hobbit Billbo seemes more clever then charismatic. Now if you look at the way they talk about Gnomes, they seem more likebly then they are smart. Even though its a WotC video, This is a great example of how Gnome see thing. So I think that Halflings shud get INT, and Gnomes shud get CHR.


    that Wotc video shows how shallow Wotc is. why are people trying to make new concepts based on soley mechanical reasons (I KNOW halflings make good rangers and rogues, give them INT and then low and behold, the halfling concept now has a pointy hat)

    you want to build uber-races, go talk to WOTC. IF you want to make cool concepts, stick around


    SneaksyDragon wrote:

    that Wotc video shows how shallow Wotc is. why are people trying to make new concepts based on soley mechanical reasons (I KNOW halflings make good rangers and rogues, give them INT and then low and behold, the halfling concept now has a pointy hat)

    you want to build uber-races, go talk to WOTC. IF you want to make cool concepts, stick around

    CAUSE YOU CAN'T HAVE BOTH A MECHANICALLY WORKING AND FLUFFY RACE *Flashes cheesy Buddy Christ smile and thumbs up*, now I'm off to go make my Feywild crazy man Gnome.


    im really tired of people trying to make races so good as certain classes that you would have to me an idiot not to take them. there is a difference between mechanically working and mechanically monkeyed-out. give some fluff and some mechanics for every race. 4ed has the corner of making races specifically for certain classes


    I think gnomes still have their place. Cha is not everything.

    They're still very tough for their size, they're still good sorcerers and bards (especially with illusion magic), and they're still the feyish maniacs.

    Gnome Ninja wrote:
    However, if Paizo would give the Half-Orc a +2 Con instead of Wis, that would be overpowered.

    Fixed it for you :P


    KaeYoss wrote:

    I think gnomes still have their place. Cha is not everything.

    They're still very tough for their size, they're still good sorcerers and bards (especially with illusion magic), and they're still the feyish maniacs.

    Gnome Ninja wrote:
    However, if Paizo would give the Half-Orc a +2 Con instead of Wis, that would be overpowered.
    Fixed it for you :P

    In what way is it overpowered? Physical scores aren't everything, and there are 2 other races with Con bonuses.


    Gnomes should get a bonus to Int, not Cha. And their favored class should be illusionist.
    The role of the gnome in Golarion seems to be that of the off-putting trouble maker. And what class stirs up more trouble than illusionist?
    Besides, gnomes are supposed to make other races slightly uncomfortable just because their perspectives are so skewed (being from the first world and all.)I don't see how bonus to Cha reflects this.

    Liberty's Edge

    Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

    Gnomes are perfect as they are now. The Charisma bonus perfectly suits the gnomes that appear in the Pathfinder RPG, and the Pathfinder gnomes themselves are the first time I've been able to look at the race and have some idea what the hell makes them worth playing.

    Halflings, however, need to revert to Alpha 2. A Cha bonus is not helpful to their traditional favoed class, the rogue; certainly not the way an Int bonus is. Wisdom would bt a potentially acceptable, but I personally don't see halflings as being notably more wise than humans. I could be persuaded otherwise, I suppose, but the value of an Int bonus for a rogue really can't be overstated.

    Sovereign Court

    Gnome Ninja wrote:


    In what way is it overpowered? Physical scores aren't everything, and there are 2 other races with Con bonuses.

    Do those 2 other races *also* have Str bonuses?

    One Physical Bonus, One Mental Bonus, One Penalty. This is the Paizo way.

    Sovereign Court

    Shisumo wrote:
    Wisdom would bt a potentially acceptable, but I personally don't see halflings as being notably more wise than humans.

    Once again, the legacy names of the attributes cause confusion. Wisdom in 3.x isn't just how wise you are; the fact that it contributes to Will saves indicates toughness of will. It indicates your dedication to your ideals, which is why it's the Divine casting stat. It's always been the common sense stat (which is different than wisdom).

    The way it seems the stats parallel each other in PF, at least, is as follows:

    Strength = Charisma
    Dexterity = Intelligence
    Constitution = Wisdom

    Halflings are described in the setting text as basically having a high wisdom stat, but are given a high charisma stat. For some reason. As for intelligence, halflings have never, ever been depicted as the sharpest knives in the drawer.


    hazel monday wrote:
    Gnomes should get a bonus to Int, not Cha. And their favored class should be illusionist.

    That was a good concept back when illusionist was its own class. If anything, they should make it wizard.

    But I like the sorcerer/bard angle, as well as the cha bonus. It fits the fey angle and CHA makes more sense for illusion and trickery, too.

    hazel monday wrote:


    The role of the gnome in Golarion seems to be that of the off-putting trouble maker. And what class stirs up more trouble than illusionist?

    I won't answer that question. I will just quote elan. "Dupe, dupe, dupe the stupid ogre" :D

    hazel monday wrote:


    Besides, gnomes are supposed to make other races slightly uncomfortable just because their perspectives are so skewed (being from the first world and all.)I don't see how bonus to Cha reflects this.

    They're "feytouched", if you like. And fey tend to have good charisma scores. And remember, the best way to make someone uncomfortable is via intimidate - and what does that need?

    Gnome Ninja wrote:


    In what way is it overpowered?

    Con and Strength? That's too much.


    hogarth wrote:
    Viktor_Von_Doom wrote:
    Gnomes had a niche?
    Illusionist/thief or illusionist/cleric. But that was quite a while ago...

    isn't that a bard? O:)

    I have nothing to add to the argument save that I think 1/2lings are stealing gnomes thunder.
    *ghost sound's some thunder being carried off*

    The Exchange

    Perhaps gnomes should be +2 INT, +2 CHA and -2 STR - the +2 CON is a holdover of when they were mini-dwarves in earlier editions. And maybe they should be wizard and sorcerer as their preferred characters (though I prefer sorcerer and druid, given the fey thing). The Bard thing with gnomes I never really understood that well, and it certainly sits better with the halflings, though I suspect that gnomes with bard as favoured class will not be changed for backwards compatibility reasons. The new halfling works better for me than the previous Alpha versions - CHA is very useful to rogues, given that they have the various social skills as class skills.

    Sovereign Court

    Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
    Perhaps gnomes should be +2 INT, +2 CHA and -2 STR

    One Physical, One Mental, One Penalty! This is the Paizo Way!

    Dark Archive

    Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
    Perhaps gnomes should be +2 INT, +2 CHA and -2 STR - the +2 CON is a holdover of when they were mini-dwarves in earlier editions. And maybe they should be wizard and sorcerer as their preferred characters (though I prefer sorcerer and druid, given the fey thing). The Bard thing with gnomes I never really understood that well, and it certainly sits better with the halflings, though I suspect that gnomes with bard as favoured class will not be changed for backwards compatibility reasons. The new halfling works better for me than the previous Alpha versions - CHA is very useful to rogues, given that they have the various social skills as class skills.

    Agreed.


    thelesuit wrote:
    In the old (white box)days (before someone decided to make kobolds into lizards), dwarves, gnomes, and kobolds were all related.

    Er, no, they weren't related to dwarves in the white box days.

    There are computer-searchable PDFs of the entire original D&D line available for sale, and searching through all of them for "kobold" makes it easy to see that it is never claimed in any of them that kobolds were related to gnomes or dwarves. Not in the original three booklets, not in Supplement I: Greyhawk, not in Supplement II: Blackmoor, not in Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry, and not in Supplement IV: Gods, Demi-Gods, and Heroes.

    It is, rather, the Holmes-written Basic Set in 1977 that calls them "dwarf-like", on p.29. But that declaration was contemporaneous with the AD&D Monster Manual (also 1977), under Gary Gygax's byline, which clearly showed them as scaled-and-tailed. The scaly version was then used in all future versions of D&D:

    Spoiler:
    A: Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set, 1981 (Moldvay), p.B37

    "They have scaly rust-brown skin and no hair."

    B: Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set, 1983 (Mentzer), Dungeon Masters Rulebook, p.32

    "They have scaly, rust-brown skin and no hair."

    C: Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition Monstrous Compendium Volume 1, Kobold page

    "Barely clearing three feet in height, kobolds have scaly hides that range from very dark rusty brown to a rusty black."

    "In a lair there will be 5-20 (5d4) bodyguards, females equal to 50% of the males, young equal to 10% of the males and 30-300 (3d10x10) eggs."

    D: Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia, p.187

    "They have scaly, rust-brown skin no hair."

    E: Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition Monstrous Manual, p.214

    "Barely clearing three feet in height, kobolds have scaly hides that range from very dark rusty brown to a rusty black."

    "In a lair there will be 5-20 (5d4) bodyguards, females equal to 50% of the males, young equal to 10% of the males and 30-300 (3d10x10) eggs."

    F: Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition Monster Manual, p.124

    "Kobolds are short, reptilian humanoids with cowardly and sadistic tendencies.
    "A kobold's scaly skin ranges from dark rusty brown to a rusty black color."

    G: Dungeons & Dragons 3.5th Edition Monster Manual, p.161

    "Kobolds are short, reptilian humanoids with cowardly and sadistic tendencies.
    "A kobold's scaly skin ranges from dark rusty brown to a rusty black color."

    This is not the only case of Holmes inventing something which has no support anywhere else in D&D material. The original version of D&D was not clear as to whether magic missile required an attack roll. The Holmes Basic D&D set was the only version to assert that it did; the Gygax-written AD&D, and every subsequent version of D&D, stated it automatically hit.


    I'd like to see gnomes be TINY, and able to speak to animals "at-will".


    see wrote:
    thelesuit wrote:
    In the old (white box)days (before someone decided to make kobolds into lizards), dwarves, gnomes, and kobolds were all related.

    Er, no, they weren't related to dwarves in the white box days.

    Now you are going to make me go check my White Box books and my old Basic Set (which I might have...somewhere).

    You will have to excuse us old guys. I was playing D&D before the Monster Manual came out -- or at least before it was available where I lived. My recollection is that it was a couple years before I purchased a Monster Manual.

    But you are probably right.

    I would hazard that most folklorists would say you are wrong though.

    CJ


    Gnomes have gone through so many different roles throughout gaming history, that they really never had a true niche. Everybdy things of gnomes differently. You have a pile of archetypes, and really, it's a matter of pick and choose as to which one you want to play.

    Davidian Gnome: Blue Shirt, pointy hat. Fears trolls. Tend to do a lot of rough and tumbling. Talkative, friendly, and well spoken. Tends to get along well with others.

    Warcraftian Gnome (See Also Forgotten Realms Gnomes): Curious, inventive, clever, creative. Tends to get along well with others. Willing to do something dangerous for the sake of progress, and for comedy. Need to be durable for the sake of their experiments.

    Fourthedian Gnomes: Feylike creatures. Tricksters. Playful. Tends to get along well with others. They are supernatural creatures, so they tend to be more durable than most.

    You can justify anything when it comes to gnomes. -2 Str, +2 Int, +2 Cha would be really nice, but for current balance issue, it looks like one good mental, one good physical, and one appropriate penalty score is the direction being taken. Part of it is a matter of consistancy between races. Another part of it is to avoid making an "Ultimate This" race. Give a gnome +int and +cha, you'll never see any gnome barbarians again.

    Honestly, I didn't really see the 3.X halflings as the Hobbit successors. I saw more of that in gnomes. Both races are home and family oriented. Both races are small and friendly. However, halflings are presented as more sly. Additionally, Halflings are always described as sharing Human lands. Gnomes are more isolated, much like the Hobbits of the Shire. And, really, (meganerd alert) Bilbo didn't have a Dex bonus. With all the hits he took, he had a con bonus.

    I think it's worth noting that the lack of Int bonus for the race is being looked at like it's a penalty. The implications aren't that gnomes aren't clever. It's that they are more sociable and outgoing than they are book smart. There's no reason you can't have a brilliant gnome. He's simply going to be a likable guy as well.

    A gnome is more along the lines, outlikewise, of a human than a halfling. A gnome can be anything. A better con score is good for EVERY class. A good Cha score is good for EVERY class. Technically, that's true of all scores, but it's less limited this way. Also, charisma tends to be a little more useful when dealing with a multiclass character than Intelligence. If that gnome barbarian happens to take a level of Bard, he not only gets his bonus hit point, now he gets to be better when he whips out a wand, before enraging and going shortynuts in combat.

    Scarab Sages

    Gnomes should get +2 INT and include wizard as a favored class.


    I've jumped past the discussion in this thread to post my gut feeling without getting lost in the argument: The gnome description is good; I like the crazy fey nature trickster aspect. ... The *mechanics* of the race might need tweaking.


    Whatever niche the Gnome ends up with, and there are lots of valid ideas as to what it should be, I just want it to be the gnomes niche and not have the other races overlapping.

    Shadow Lodge

    Playing one right now. I like the gnome as a sorcerer. I've never cared for bard so that had no appeal to me. It's a good mesh, the CON and CHA bonus make for a nice sorcerer. I am trying to use the +1 illusion DC as much as possible.

    I don't know about it's previous niche.

    -- Dennis


    My favorite for those two little fellas was always:

    Halflings (actually Dragonlance Kender)
    DEX +2, WIS +2, STR -2 (Agile with keen senses and strong will, small=weak)
    FC: Rogue, Ranger
    They are either city racoons or living in the woods, defending their small dwellings against monsters and evil humanoids.

    Gnomes (more like Tolkien Hobbits)
    INT +2, CHA +2, STR -2 (smart and likeable, small=weak)
    FC: Druid, Wizard
    They are either fey related philosophers or city dwelling "scientists"

    As to sorcerer as FC. I don't know, but I think sorcerer should never be a favored class.
    Maybe I interpret it wrong, but this would indicate that a race would have a overproportionally large number of sorcerers related to the other races.
    And since sorcerers depend strongly on their blood-heritage I really can't see why their should be more infernal/undead/dragon/... well NON-Fey Gnome sorcerers be around than there are human, elfen or even dwarven ones.
    Hope you get my point.

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