This is not a game about goblins in a world of humans, elves, and dwarves. This is a game about goblins in a goblin world. They live in giant teapots, in piles of garbage, under bridges with plunger shoes, in a big hole they keep digging for no reason, in giant peaches they have eaten tunnels in, in the hats of giants, in big boats that roll on the land. Welcome to Gobbo World! 'Tis a silly place.
By @knockoffgoblin on Twitter. Used without permission.
Goblins or Gobbos always kind of functioned on a different level of reality as if they were from a dimension of cosmic comedic relief. This is because that is exactly the case and you now have come to Gobbo World. Everything is gobliny here, all functioning on the chaotic cartoony logic of the Gobbo paradigm. Though there are creatures here which we might not think of as being Gobbos, even these are somewhat gobliny. Even among Gobbos, the boundaries of categorization are both looser and more convoluted for there are many creatures in the Gobbo family and they either don't keep track or do so incorrectly on purpose.
Roll on the appropriate table below or push the button to fill in the above statement. Each detail you insert into the above is a Characteristic which defines what your character is capable of.
Push the Button Below for an Instant Gobbo! (Sorry it looks funny with my dark background)
What is a Zortch?
Now you may be asking, what is a Zortch or the Midnight Goulash? Well, that is entirely up to you and your GM (Gobbo Master) to decide. If there is some doubt about what kind of creature you are or what you can do, roll for it! It is a Challenge Level 2 roll to determine details about your Gobbo's Characteristics during the course of play.
Now take a big bag with a good mixed assortment of dice. Pull out at random one for each Characteristic or pull out five and assign them as desired, the higher the die the more powerful the Characteristic.
When a PC attempts a task that is risky or dangerous, the GM first selects a Challenge level.
Level 1: the GM draws two dice from a bag of assorted dice and keeps the lowest.
Level 2: The GM draws two and keeps the highest.
Level 3: The GM draws three and keeps the highest.
Then the PC rolls all their applicable dice (Usually only one or two) and their Gobbo Die. The GM rolls the Challenge Die.
If the PC's dice total higher than the Gobbo and the Challenge Dice, then the attempt is a full success.
If the PC's dice fall between the Gobbo and the Challenge Dice, then the attempt is a mixed success, so the attempt succeeds but at a cost or it requires a hard choice.
If the PC's dice are less than the Gobbo and Challenge Dice then it is a failure with consequences.
The Gobbo Die:
The Gobbo Die begins at a d6 and my be increased a step up the die chain as a consequence up to a d20. It represents the madness and mayhem that accompanies Gobbos everywhere, often in increasing degrees. The Gobbo Die resets after a period of boredom where the Gobbos don't get into any trouble for a day or more.
Harm and Death:
Every time a Gobbo suffers from physical harm, the consequences are immediate. When Gobbos are slashed, they lose a limb or even their head. If they are burned, they run around screaming on fire. Gobbos can survive most injuries until the cartoon logic that defines their existence decides that it would be funnier them to die. Each time they suffer Harm, roll the Gobbo Die. On a 6 or higher, the Gobbo dies in the funniest way possible.
By contrast NPCs should probably not work this way, I would assign them a number of Harm they could take before dying, but hey, I'm not your dad. If you want to give them a Gobbo die too, go wild.
Growing your Gobbo:
Advancement isn't really a Gobbo thing. Gobbos grow by eating strange things, replacing their limbs with better ones, undergoing hideous mutation. As a rule, it isn't that hard for a Gobbo to replace any part of their body with a part from another creature.
Example of Play:
Goolie, a Snotty Grumpkin the color of Baby Barf with a Bear Trap for Teeth who Strangles Pigeons for Pennies and has a Sick Yoyo, encounters a deep hole she wishes to descend.
Goolie pulled a d8 for Snotty and a d6 for Strangles Pigeons in Gobbo Creation.
Goolie's current Gobbo Die remains at a d6.
Goolie has a plan. She wishes to use her strong pigeon strangling hands to climb down and her voluminous snot as a kind of support to slow her descent. Horrible but smart.
The GM agrees that both of these Characteristics apply.
The GM says this is a fairly average challenge so assigns it a Challenge Level of 2.
The GM draws two dice, a d4 and a d20. How unfortunate.
The GM rolls Goolie's d6 Gobbo Die and the d20 Challenge Die, resulting in a 4 and a 7.
Goolie rolls her d8 and d6, resulting in a total of 6, meaning a Mixed Success.
The GM offers Goolie a hard choice: she may either upgrade her Gobbo Die or injure her hands, downgrading her Strangles Pigeons to a d4.
Goolie can, at this time, suggest another choice of a suitable consequence. She suggests that her nose gets pulled off, instead.
The GM agrees that this would also be a suitable consequence and so Goolie loses her grip as she climbs down, placing far too much weight on her nose, causing it to pop off. Until Goolie can find a replacement nose, her Snotty Characteristic will no longer help her.
After descending the hole, Goolie encounters a large angry Trobgut wearing a wife beater and swinging a too-big rolled up newspaper. Not seeing any peaceful solution and seeing that the Trobgut has a lovely potato of a nose, Goolie attacks.
The GM has already set the scene: the Trobgut is angrily shouting and swinging around his newspaper.
Goolie decides to chomp his newspaper with her Bear Trap Teeth (d10).
The GM thinks this is a good idea and not terribly difficult so he assigns it a Challenge Level of 1.
The GM draws out a d8 and a d6.
The GM rolls Goolie's d6 Gobbo die and the d6 Challenge Die, resulting in a 2 and a 2.
Goolie rolls her d10 Bear Trap Teeth, resulting in a 5. Success!
The GM describes as Goolie's teeth chomp off the heft of the newspaper, leaving the Trobgut defenseless. Since the Trobgut is a big baby, he makes to run away.
But Goolie wants that nose.
Goolie makes to hold the Trobgut in place with her Pigeon Strangling Hands (d6) and bite off the nose with her Bear Tap Teeth (d10).
The GM Assigns this Challenge Level 2, drawing a d6 and a d8.
GM rolls the d6 Gobbo Die and the d8 Challenge Die, resulting in a 4 and an 8.
Goolie rolls poorly, totaling only 2.
The GM rules that the Trobgut punches Goolie in retaliation, knocking her teeth out and dealing Harm.
Goolie rolls her Gobbo Die (d6) and rolls a 4. Thank the Gourd!
Goolie's metal teeth go flying and the Trobgut, once again makes to run away. Goolie can stay to recover her teeth or keep chasing that schnoz.
To be continued...
A Gobbo Adventure Scenario!
Lord Snivelington of Junk Town has declared Boomy Boomy Splat Day illegal, this is the weekly celebration where Gobbos of all kinds set off fireworks and high-yield explosives. This results in the entire city being destroyed on a weekly basis, but its a tradition! And then Rebuilding Day really brings the whole city together!
As is the Gobbo way, this cruel and unjust declaration would be summarily ignored and maybe even aggressively rebelled against, resulting in even more devastation, however this time, it is different. This time, Lord Snivelington has hired a crew of Garbulous Chewers, large multi-mawed shark-like creatures with a single eye whose gaze freezes you in place.
These Chewers are going to be patrolling the town, enforcing Snivelington's totally inhumane and utterly reasonable decree. What perfectly sane and reasonable action will you take in return for this injustice?
The lord's Skittering Manor is on the back of a giant crab, guarded by Chewers and a series of elaborate traps, not to mention the crab itself, Stephen, who has a childlike loyalty to Snivelington although the petty noble treats him poorly.
If any of the weird words I made up for kinds of Gobbos or anything else are slurs or other naughty words, this was not intentional. I looked them up an none of them seemed to be bad, but please inform me and I will change it.
Special thanks to Semiurge of Archons March On
for helping me with using the Generator Generator!
Having all of these whacky gobbos that the group needs to create for themselves is a clever way to make this a bit of a collaborative worldbuilding game. It's interesting how goblins in particular, and maybe to a lesser extent kobolds, or like those kinds of mischievous fey-ish creatures, lend themselves well to being an alternative to a human perspective, like maybe even hobbits fall into that as well. But the way you put it, of "goblins in a goblin world" makes that idea a little more salient. People in the OSR before have discussed the idea of humans as the default mode and what that means, and some, myself included, have tried to critically reinterpret humans with that in mind, but it's less frequent to see the idea of a non-human-centric world with a critical lens. Which isn't necessarily what you're doing here either I guess, this just seems like decidedly un-critical goofy gobbo goodness haha, but all the same it evoked those thoughts in me.ReplyDelete
Maybe this post is just how goblins perceive the world rather than being a separate goblin dimension. Maybe we humans are the TrobgutsDelete
insert galaxy brain meme hereDelete
This is lovely.ReplyDelete