Kobold Species in Zheng-Kitar | World Anvil


The small but zealous people who think themselves Dragons

Base Racial Traits

Ability Scores: (+2 Dexterity, +2 Intelligence, -2 Constitution) Kobolds are nimble and smart, but physically weak.   Type: Kobolds are humanoids with the reptilian subtype.   Size: Kobolds are small size creatures and gain all the bonuses and penalties because of it.   Speed: Kobolds have a base speed of 30 feet.   Senses: Kobolds gain scent out to 30ft, which increases to 60ft vs large concentrations of a natural element(Fire, Acid, Cold, Electricity).   Languages: Kobolds begin play speaking The Regional Language(See Languages of Zheng-Kitar) that reflects their origins, and Draconic. Kobolds with high intelligence can choose between the following bonus languages(Ezdhûlian, Giant, Ignan, Terran, Infernal, and Abyssal.)   Masters of the Desert: Kobolds are not affected by non-magical difficult terrain, and gain a racial +2 on Perception checks.   Desert Worm Riders: Kobolds gain a +2 racial bonus on Handle Animal and a +4 on Ride checks. Stealth and Handle Animal are always class skills for a Kobold.   Dragonhide: Kobolds gain +2 Natural Armor and Resistance 5 to the element that corresponds with the color of their scales. Kobolds also gain another racial trait depending on the color of their scales, see the below table for more details. Unless otherwise noted, the DC for any saves for these traits is (DC 10 + 1/2HD + INTMOD).  
Black-Scaled(Acid): Gain the ability to breath underwater. Move through swamps and quicksand at full speed.   Blue-Scaled(Electricity): Can mimic any voice or sound it has heard by making a successful Bluff check against a listener’s Sense Motive check. Can cast Create Water 3/day.   Green-Scaled(Acid): Can move through any sort of foliage at full speed. Leaves no trail and cannot be tracked in desert or forest environments.   Red-Scaled(Fire): See perfectly in smoke conditions(such as those created by Pyrotechnics). Hostile creatures that begin their turn adjacent to you take 1d4 points of fire damage that bypasses immunities. This damage increases by one step every 6HD.   White-Scaled(Cold): Gain a permanent spider climb effect against icy or sandy surfaces. Once per 1d8 rounds, you can explode into a cloud of snow and sand and move to any square within your base land speed without provoking attacks of opportunity.   Carnation-Scaled(Cold): Once per 1d8 rounds, you can exhale a 30ft cone of softening gas that turns all squares caught within its radius into difficult terrain 1d4+1 rounds. Non-ground squares are turned into difficult terrain for flying creatures.   Golden-Scaled(Fire): Once per combat, you can roar and force all enemies within 40ft to make a will save or become shaken for 1d4 rounds. A successful save reduces this to one round.   Purple-Scale(Electricity): As a standard action that provokes AoO, you can target an enemy within line of sight and force them to make a will save or have all forms of their movement drop to 0 for one round. On a successful save, all movement speeds of their are reduced by 10ft for one round instead to a minimum of 10ft. This ability has no effect on mindless creatures or creatures immune to mind-affecting effects.
  Ancestral Biology: Kobold gain a bite attack that deals 1d4 points of damage as normal, but which also deals 1d4 points of the same type of energy they are resistant to(See Above). This elemental damage scales with size and increases by one step every 5HD. Kobolds also have a long, flexible tail that can be used to carry objects. They cannot wield weapons with their tails, but they can retrieve small, stowed objects or hidden weapons carried on their persons as a swift action. This tail grants them a +4 on their CMD.   Dragon Emperor's Durability: Once a day when they would be reduced to below 0HP by any means, Kobolds can ignore that damage and return to 1HP instead. This ability works even if an attack would instantly reduce them to below their death threshold, but does not work if it would reduce them to twice their death threshold or more.

Basic Information


Kobolds are small in stature, but superficially and biologically they resemble miniature Dragonborn and to a lesser degree, Dragons themselves. They have two arms and legs, with a long Draconic head and a body coated in scales that can vary in color from the deep, evil red to the flamboyant and often mocked Carnation and Purple. Their bodies are physically quite frail due to their small size, but they are highly nimble and often deceptively intelligent.

Biological Traits

Kobolds are small, bipedal reptilian humanoids. Most stand around 3 feet tall and weigh about 35 pounds. They have powerful jaws for creatures of their size and noticeable claws on their hands and feet. Often kobolds’ faces are curiously devoid of expression, as they favor showing their emotions by simply swishing their tails. Kobolds’ thick hides vary in color, and most have scales that match the hue of one of the varieties of chromatic dragons, with red scales being predominant. A few kobolds, however, have more exotic colors such as orange or yellow, which in some tribes raises or lowers an individual’s status in the eyes of his fellows.

Genetics and Reproduction

Kobolds lay hard-shelled eggs that incubate for a period between 45 and 60 days, after which they hatch using their distinctive cranial horn buds. Sexual dimorphism is very limited, with non-kobolds rarely able to tell the differences between the sexes. Most kobolds are quite short-lived, with a typical life-expectancy of around 30 years before typically dying through violent means. However, when their lives are not cut off early, they have also been known to live for quite a long time, with the oldest kobolds claiming their age to be nearly 100, though such an ancient age is incredibly rare.   Kobolds remain fertile throughout their entire adult lives, with females able to produce an egg once every 20–25 days. Given ideal conditions, however, females can lay a clutch of up to six eggs, and require a coupling only once every six years in order to produce viable eggs. Kobold females become more fecund as they age: a 30-year-old female may be able to lay 50 to 60 eggs per year, while an 60-year-old female may lay up to 100 per year.   Once they lay their eggs, Female Kobolds and Kobold Parents in general tend to abandon their children - once the eggs have been laid, they are typically buried deep enough to be protected but close enough to the surface to crawl out once they hatch. In this way, most Kobolds never know their true parents - one's scale color is all that often tells of one's lineage, but with the amount of kobolds in the world reuniting with one's biological parents is all but impossible. Thus, Kobolds treasure their bonds with their hatchmates more than anything - though they are often willing to do anything and everything to survive, those hatchmates that survive with them to adulthood are closer than anything in the world.

Growth Rate & Stages

Although only six to eight inches in height at birth, infant kobolds are able to quickly take care of themselves, often spending the first hour after birth eating the remains of their shells. Cannibalizing other clutchmates is not unheard of and is seen by the adults as a sign of strength. Hatchlings grow quite quickly and double in size every year until achieving their juvenile state at around three. They are considered to be full adults around age 10, but can move and talk by time they are no more than three days old - though such a hatchling kobold is overwhelmingly simple-minded and weak.   Kobolds reach middle age around age 30, grow old around age 45, and become venerable at age 65.

Ecology and Habitats

Kobolds may have once lived within the tunnels, warrens, and underground caverns that dwell beneath the surface of the world, but if this is so they have long since abandoned their tunnel dwelling ways and have come to live in the light of the surface in the most arid and inhospitable deserts and wastelands of the world. Kobold bodies are practically born to survive in this harshest of conditions thanks to their innate biological need for relatively little food and drink for survival, their diligent work ethic, and their innovation and nigh-obsession with wealth and power. They often carve out their homes within the deserts and wastelands of the world and less commonly within jungles and forests, and often do so viciously and in as territorial a way as possible.   They often steal and thieve from those near them, and they often develop a reputation as thieves and stealing pests for these activities...they are also fastidious animal tamers and beast riders, and are renowned the world over for their incredible talent for taming even the most titanic of giga-creatures that call the desert their home, as they have a natural talent as a people for ingratiating themselves with the more powerful. Though they can be negotiated with and dealt with when they take up residence or move into an area, many prefer to either make displays of force to subjugate them, move away, or simply hope for coexistence.

Dietary Needs and Habits

Kobolds are omnivores and will eat almost anything their sharp teeth can chew and their strong digestive system can process. Like other reptilian creatures, kobolds have a slow metabolism, which means they require little food and drink to survive. This adds to their diligent work ethic, as they require few meal and water breaks, and increases their ability to survive in the nutrient-poor and often extremely arid and inhospitable desert and wasteland environments.

Biological Cycle

As they age, Kobold scales grow more and more pale and they bodies become more and more infirm. Their scales soon begin to wither and fall off, and in extreme old age their already frail bodies begin to deteriorate even further into uselessness. In time, even their minds begin to falter and break down, though many die violent deaths before even reaching this point.

Additional Information

Uses, Products & Exploitation

As children of Dragons, many believe that the eyes, blood, and heart of a Kobold hold magical value, but this theory has been mostly discredited - if there is any power to the bodily parts of the kobolds, one would need a truly vast amount of them from many kobolds to form any sort of notable power.

Facial characteristics

Kobold faces are long, scaled things with long draconic snouts, prominent and flared nostrils, and very visible eyes. Their faces, because of their odd shapes, are often sharp and angular, thanks to their scales and snouts.

Geographic Origin and Distribution

Kobolds are mostly found in the arid deserts and wastelands of the world, but many decide to move to more humid climates and take up residents within the forests and jungles of the world, while a few stubborn tribes eke out an existence in the frozen snow drifts of the north as well, looking to distance themselves from their equally greedy kin.

Average Intelligence

Despite their nasty personalities, Kobolds are highly intelligent creatures with a natural knack for machinery and engineering.

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

Kobolds have normal eyes and ears, but most noteworthy is their keen sense of smell. They have excellent senses of smell and can track through scent incredibly well...and somehow, they can smell large concentrations of natural elements such as fire or ice at an even greater distance and with a greater degree of accuracy.

Civilization and Culture

Naming Traditions

Kobolds tend to have names reflecting what environment they are raised in, though all Kobolds tend towards short, guttural names with harsher tones. Their name is typically earned, like their titles, once they live long enough and/or perform some great deed.   Kobolds in the desert, underground, and arid regions of the world have one name only, which tends to be short and biting, and influenced by middle-eastern naming conventions.   Desert Male Names: Nelrek, Tazim, Hakem, Jalal   Desert Female Names: Sanaa, Ayesha, Zinah, Ghariba   Kobolds in forested or jungle areas tend to have the most traditional or classic kobold names.   Forest Male Names: Moob, Dhunzo, Zerolu, Vromol, Qolk, Irlenk   Forest Female Names: Olku, Gethraa, Nisre, Sisgul, Zudri, Asgre   Finally, Kobolds in frigid or freezing climates such as tundras and snowy areas tend to have nordic-influenced names, though still short and quick to pronounce, typically shortened from full Nordic Names as they tend to steal the names of the other creatures that prowl the tundra and cut them down for better kobold use - namely the Jotun and the Dai-Yukai.   Tundra Male Names: Alvis, Sigurd, Bjor, Gusta, Hroa, Aki   Tundra Female Names: Eiru, Nann, Ingerd, Eldri, Urd, Gudr   All Kobolds as well tend to have a title to set them apart from others with the same name. Surnames are all but unheard of to most Kobolds - they rarely live long enough to warrant them, and familial units are similarly strange to the Kobolds, who abandon their young after letting them hatch. Their title is typically earned, like their names, once they live long enough and/or perform some great deed.   Titles: of [Village or area name], the Mighty, the Tree-Leaper, of Frigid Drifts, of Golden Wind
Alternate Racial Trait List:   Kobolds cannot take normal kobold alternate racial traits without GM approval.   Kobold Alternate Racial Traits  
Racial Feat List:   Kobolds cannot take normal kobold racial feats without GM approval.   Kobold Racial Feats  
65 years
Conservation Status
Kobolds are by no means an endangered people, and are often exactly opposite, a people most numerous and plentiful. Their homes are usually out of the way and hidden, either underground or otherwise, but their numbers are plentiful.
Average Height
1.64ft - 3.6ft (0.5 - 1.1 Meters)
Average Weight
19lbs - 30lbs (9 - 14kg)
Average Physique
Kobolds are physically quite infirm, and their bodies are much less hardy than the average humanoid's. They instead rely on their natural deftness of body and mind to solve their problems and avoid their foes.
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Kobold scales are usually Black, Blue, Greed, Red, or White - though other colors such as Carnation, Gold, Purple, and even the incredibly rare Transparent Scales are uncommon but possible. They almost never grow hair - when they do, it resembles the hair of Dragonborn - that is to say, dreadlock-like tendrils that sprout from the back of their heads and their chins. This tendril hair is more a bit more common for Kobolds in cold climates.
Related Ethnicities

A greatness achieved together

All that the Kobold achieved, they have done together - no race on Zheng-Kitar is as skill at working alongside each other as the Kobolds, for good reason - without this togetherness, they could not survive the dangers of the world above that they long ago ventured up into. Now, they move together in large nomadic clans through the world's deserts, forests, jungles, and tundra, laying eggs to further their species and abandoning them to make their own way in the world - to live or die according to their own power and the power of their hatchmates. Together, Kobolds of the modern day have done great things - including the legendary taming of the five great worms by the ancient desert Kobold Clans, the subjugation of the Gigasnake by the jungle Kobolds Clans, or the construction of the mythological ice-coated mountaintop city of Bzeth'Nir by the ancient tundra Kobold Clans - together they have done amazing things, and achieved things none thought them capable of.   It is precisely because of this weakness, however, that Kobolds rely on each other - and though they often bicker and fight and war amongst each other, a given kobold clan is as tight and thick as thieves, bound together as hatchmates and grown from birth to survive alongside each other. There are many things a kobold would do for power or more, it is said, but never would they betray a hatchmate - to do so is to deny what it means to be a kobold.

Amazing Beast Tamers

Though few would guess it, Kobolds are some of the greatest beast tamers on all of Zheng-Kitar - whether it is a natural ability to ingratiate themselves with the strong and animals or perhaps a result of generations of training, the fact remains that Kobolds are some of the most experienced creatures in the art of beast taming there are - even beating out elves and other races in touch with nature. This skill of their is so profound that is knowledge of the extreme training, technique, power, and loyalty of animals trained by kobold handlers has spread throughout most of the known world - many creatures the continent over come to kobold camps and designated animal camps to buy trained animals from experienced kobold beast tamers.   The secret of how they do their training is unknown - their skill is so legendary, that they are even capable of training massive gigacreatures that roam their local envirionments, from purple worms to giant gigasnakes and even massive Remorhazes - they are capable of great feats, and even greater ingenuity. Much like humans, they are a race that is a living example of how their own weakness has inspired them to seek even greater heights - and while many yet retain their savagery and rob and steal and attack any who come close, they are as varied in their purpose as the stars in the sky.


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