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Meet The Gnomeventurer
20100413
"Secure the other end of the rope ... I've got gnomeventuring to do!"
Jarvis Specklethwaite, Gentleman Gnomeventurer


It will come as no surprise to many of you that I am a gnome supporter. Throughout 3E, the lead up to 4E, and especially in current D&D/OGL circles, I think the gnomes got the short end of the stick repeatedly ... and I'd like to DO something about it!

In part, I understand. How to handle gnomes is a tricky subject. At first blush, they and halflings seem to tread a lot of the same ground. And even when new ground is identified, gnomes have often been painted in a purely comic style. They became a JOKE, when really part of what they embodied was a sense of wonder and whimsy.

The answer that Wizards of the Coast AND Paizo have come to is to substantially change what gnomes are ... giving them a strong link to the world of the fey and making magic (particularly illusion) their mechanical focus. Moving away from the amusing and giving them an otherworldly creepiness. And, while both companies have created very interesting races in this manner, neither of them really seem like GNOMES to me.

I get it. Some people have NO PLACE for anything light hearted in their fantasy RPGs. But is it really necessary to take away those elements entirely? Is it not possible that the classic gnome has something to OFFER to a game?

I sure think so. And Jarvis Specklethwaite, Genleman Gnomeventurer may help me to elucidate on the subject as he appears in more doodles.
Comments
wickedthought From: wickedthought Date: April 13th, 2010 07:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
I believe Jess Heinig's Wicked Fantasy gnomes are in the most current issue of Kobold Quarterly.
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wickedthought From: wickedthought Date: April 13th, 2010 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ah, alas. No gnomes this time. Maybe in the GenCon issue!
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frankwanderer From: frankwanderer Date: April 14th, 2010 02:10 am (UTC) (Link)
The ideas were never developed in a fashion that satisfied me. However, I enjoyed the ideas that at least appeared to some extent for the gnomes in the Eberron setting, in terms of a "serious" culture.

That said, whether gnomes are the source for that, I tend to agree with you sincerely disagree with anyone who suggests that things light hearted and/or humorous have no place in a fantasy setting...and especially a fantasy game. Humor is an integral part of nearly any good story, even one that is generally not supposed to be humorous. So long as light-hearted or humorous are not "reinterpreted" to mean stupid, pointless, or useless (and they often are, unfortunately).

But then, the same sorts of people will also argue that illusion magic is stupid, pointless, and/or useless. Just as foolishly...

Frank the Wandeder
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zargon From: zargon Date: April 14th, 2010 05:45 am (UTC) (Link)

Gnome man is an island

What about the gnomes in Dragonlance?
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