I Hate Tolkien

So anyone else feel like the races were presented as very Tolkienesque? I did & got really mad (thankfully it is fluff & I can change it). I hate tolkien's races, they are annoy & bland. I like my dwarves as rambuncous, drunken honorable warriors (or solemn wise short dudes). Calling them greedy ponderous people made me very angry. Halfings make me further angry. They were basically hobbits. I hate hobbits more than I hate Tolkien. Why can't a short humaniod be interesting? Please don't make then boring shirefolk. Wanderlusting keen eyed kender are a better version of halflings than hobbits. Elves were mostly okay, I still would like so see some more down to earth elves that aren't so remote though. If you think about it, wouldn't elves & dwarves & halflings want to mingle together?

Humans upset me stat-wise, they shouldn't have than many bonuses on stats. How about letting them grab another background instead of giving them so many stats 


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Tolkien hates you.

With that out of the way, I agree, the humans stat bonus's is a little meh. Doesn't bother me too much though. 
I love Tolkien and don't think his world and its associated cultures are bland at all. I think hobbits are plenty interesting.  Kender are dreadful and I don't care to see them make a return to the game.

If you have to resort to making offensive comments instead of making logical arguments, you deserve to be ignored.

There are both kinds of Halflings aren't there? Stout are hobbits essentially, and Lightfoots are Kender. I don't see an issue with that. Mountain dwarves have always been very dour (although not as dour as Dour Dwarves), stern, and serious, Hill dwarves are relatively adventerous and drink more. It's been that way since probably atleast the 2e book on Dwarves.
There are both kinds of Halflings aren't there? Stout are hobbits essentially, and Lightfoots are Kender. I don't see an issue with that. Mountain dwarves have always been very dour (although not as dour as Dour Dwarves), stern, and serious, Hill dwarves are relatively adventerous and drink more. It's been that way since probably atleast the 2e book on Dwarves.




What he said. 
Hey guys,

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Monica
I love Tolkien. My fist ever fantasy book was The Hobbit, followed by Lord of the Rings. He'll always hold a special place in my heart.

And while I'll always feel that some parts of D&D should always carry that influence from him, the last thing I want is all Tolkien all the time.

I'm fine with us having options for Hobbit like Halflings, or Tolkienesque Elves and Dwarves. That's fine. Just so long as options for non-Tolkienesque characters are presented alongside them.

I like that while one of the Halfling subraces is basically Hobbits with the serial numbers filed off, the other one is the more D&D-esque adventurous Halfling. We have both options. And that's great.

Likewise, I also want to start seeing my Half-Orcs and Dragonborn alongside my Elves and Dwarves.

Tolkien is fine in the right doses. Tolkien was a great writer, who influences countless fantasy writers, practically defining the modern fantasy genre. So he deserves his place in D&D.

Just as long as he's not the only choice, I'm happy.
D&D Experience Level: Relatively new First Edition: 4th Known Editions: 4th, 3.5 --- Magic Experience Level: Fairly skilled First Expansion: 7th Edition Play Style: Very Casual
You don't like it - change it. 


Sounds pretty simple to me.



For the rest of the world - that which is familiar and popular sells and there is little to be gained by creating unfamilar race stereotypes to try to sell a new game.  There just isn't any pont to it.  Besides - changing the stereotypes is dangerous.  It was thinking like that the inflicted Gully Dwarves and Kender upon the world.   Better a billion boring and stale stereotypes than one more Kender or Gully Dwarf.


On the other hand, I agree.  Not that I hate Tolkien - I actually like Tolkien.  But that I'd prefer a different racial history for my own world.  So I'll just change it.

But I don't expect the published product to reflect anything other than the historical portrayal of these races in the game.  

Carl
            
I love Tolkein, and I don't get why the hate for his worlds. It inspired D&D and its influence really is the only thing that should be expected at the most basic level of races. After that rewrite the races to your hearts content, its D&D, its meant to be your world.

Kender are good for one thing, Ammunition to be fired at an active volcano. *Twitching violently* The only race I actually hate.
You want interesting epic Halflings, than lets go for a stroll in the Talenta Plains of Khorvaire, in Eberron. Dinosaur riding halfling barbarians of win. I love these guys.
Humans definately need some work still. No arguement there. 
If it wasn't for Tolkien, we wouldn't have all this. Okay we might, but it'd all look very, very different.

I like my dwarves as rambuncous, drunken honorable warriors



I believe Tolkien's dwarves were like that, so I'm not sure what the issue is here.

Why can't a short humaniod be interesting? Please don't make then boring shirefolk.



I actually prefer halflings being mainly a race of homely farmer type characters, over the old (and seriously tired) cliche of a Cockney-speaking halfling rogue. Seriously, I've gotten to the point where whenever I meet a halfling in an online D&D game, I keep a distance from him, and as soon as he sports a Cockney accent, I immediately nail down all of my belongings.

Don't forget, also, that the guide gives these as examples of what that race is typically like. There is nothing that states that your character must be like this. Halflings might be a non-adventurous type, but Bilbo and Frodo certainly weren't. The guide also says that elves are usually good, yet I've encountered some evil elves, and ended up with a character who is convinced that all elves are like this as a result of it - such a thing can be interesting, and make for good roleplaying, if it's done well (and not overdone to the point of becoming another cliche *cough* chaotic good drow rangers with pet panthers *cough* ).

So, bottom line: whether a character is interesting or not is up to you, not the PHB. I've always said that a human paladin from Cormyr can be just as interesting as a half tiefling paladin/ninja from the demonic plane of Kazazuth. It's all about giving him the right personality, and creating something that sets him apart from the others.

As for humans: I agree, they shoudl not have thsoe stat bonuses. +1 to a single stat of the player's choice, and give them some skill related bonuses to balance them with the other races, and to reflect their versatile nature.
Everything expressed in this post is my opinion, and should be taken as such. I can not declare myself to be the supreme authority on all matters...even though I am right!
Pfft, Frodo was a whinger and lame. Bilbo was quite a good adventuring halfling thief, but my favourites are Pippin and Meriadoc. Those guys had bags of class.

I personally like Gully Dwarves, but I don't want to see Warforged, Dragonborn, or Tieflings shoehorned into my fantasy setting, particularly the Forgotton Realms. There is certainly a place for those races, but they definitely put a spin on traditional fantasy, that people may or may not like. Tieflings for example would be great in a Planes adventure, Warforged are very very Eberron, and various kinds of dragonny humanoids have show up all over the place in fantasy history.
Just to address the kender/hobbit stuff, just to be clear. I dislike kender as well, but I find them preferable to hobbits, my favorite halfling background were as gypsy-like riverfolk, but doesn't look like I'll get much options.
Here's my vote for the Halflings of 3.x/4 over the Fatlings of old.
Stay Frosty! - Shado
Just to address the kender/hobbit stuff, just to be clear. I dislike kender as well, but I find them preferable to hobbits, my favorite halfling background were as gypsy-like riverfolk, but doesn't look like I'll get much options.



there is nothing stopping you from changing the fluff.

The word you want is Speciesist, not Racist....

We may incorrectly refer to Elves, Humans, Dwarves et al as races - but they are not races in the real world sense and thus any stereotyping, etc. of them has nothing to do with Racism but is something entirely different.

Races are nothing more than local polymorphisms and are nearly identical from a genetic standpoint and have no measurable difference in capability.  This is not necessariy true of different species.

Carl

Sorry. Anyhow I do feel like Tolkein's "speciesist" views aren't logical or friendly to a multicultural audience. Especially when you add such negative traits as greedy
Most of the racial flavor belongs in the subrace entries, not in the race entries. Subraces can be extremely different from eachother.

The Tolkien subraces can have the Tolkien flavor: Hill Dwarf, Wood Elf, and Stout (Strongheart) Halfling.

The alternative subraces can have alternative flavor: perceptive hoarding Mountain Dwarf, wizardly otherworldly High Elf, and swift roaming Halfling.



The racial mechanics need much better balance. Also, the Human mechanics are crazy talk.
Races are nothing more than local polymorphisms and are nearly identical from a genetic standpoint and have no measurable difference in capability.  This is not necessariy true of different species.

The question of whether elves, humans, and orcs are actually different species or whether they are different races of the same species is far from cut and dried.  Keep in mind that, at least traditionally, both elves and orcs were cross-fertile with humans, and other crosses didn't exist merely for social reasons (dwarves were xeno-phobic, elves and orcs hated each other, etc).

Also keep in mind that it is possible to have tremendous variation within even a sub-species!  Just looking at canis lupus familiaris reveals a variation in adult size between 5 lbs and 200 lbs, so it's hard to discount elves and dwarves as belonging to the same species on that ground alone.  At most we can say that the area is fuzzy and probably depends a lot on the setting.

Back to the topic at hand, though, I really hope they keep the old halflings as a racial option (which looks likely, at this point).  I've never much cared for gnomes, though.  As far as hats go, having the "relatively sane, but generally friendly" hat is a much more important option in regards to forming a cohesive party (in my opinion) than the "highly eccentric, but mostly harmless" hat.

The metagame is not the game.

I might get some hate for it, but I loved Kender. Granted I never gamed with one, but the even the name still brings a smile to my face.

As for non-Tolkien-esque races, I'd love to see a return to Tieflings and Dragonborn. I feel they added a level of variety to the more human-esque races that I don't want to lose.

That being said, some of the races in 4e just got... odd.

Finally, in case anyone was wondering, my favorite race is the Genasi which I discovered in 4e. Being a half-elemental being struck a chord in me that I would love to see them in this playpacket. Will they be? Probably not, but I really want them to be :D
I might get some hate for it, but I loved Kender. Granted I never gamed with one, but the even the name still brings a smile to my face.

As for non-Tolkien-esque races, I'd love to see a return to Tieflings and Dragonborn. I feel they added a level of variety to the more human-esque races that I don't want to lose.

That being said, some of the races in 4e just got... odd.

Finally, in case anyone was wondering, my favorite race is the Genasi which I discovered in 4e. Being a half-elemental being struck a chord in me that I would love to see them in this playpacket. Will they be? Probably not, but I really want them to be :D


Doublecheck the Racial Abilities thread, and see if you can live with the ability score modifiers that are assigned to each Genasi element.
Note: I dislike most of the tolkien races, though Drunken Dwarves bring a smile to my face.

Whenever I see the races I always have these stereotyeps in my head


  • Elves = Nobles

  • Halflings = Farmers

  • Dwarves = Working class

  • Orcs = Raiders

  • Goblins = Bandits


Now that that has been done away with, I would love to see more sub-races come out that diverge from the Tolkien stereotypes. I dislike Genasi(Elementals) though at the same time most of my favorite races are the ones that are a bit different, Muls and Thrii-Kreen.

Half races should be an option eventually. Especially Half Giants, Half Dwarves, and Half Elves.

I call it now, Sub-Races of humans should be all the Half Races!

 
Ant Farm
I Hate Tolkien!!

Me too. 

Does it matter to me that Garry used those races and others to design a decent game around?

Not in the least. A litttle tweaking and those races are now mine.

Does it bother me that D&D adopted all those other abominable races? Notice I used the word abominable.

And it all started with Gary's insistence on those accursed black elves that no one seems to be able to color black.  


Half races should be an option eventually. Especially Half Giants, Half Dwarves, and Half Elves.

I call it now, Sub-Races of humans should be all the Half Races!

 




Lol I didn't say anything so you called it but I always kind of assumed the half races would fall under human subraces withen this format.
I Hate Tolkien!!
Does it bother me that D&D adopted all those other abominable races? Notice I used the word abominable.

And it all started with Gary's insistence on those accursed black elves that no one seems to be able to color black.  

There's a mythological basis for the Drow, however. They weren't just something Tolkien or Gary Gygax pulled out of thin air, and they weren't part of the badly-done planar symmetry that we found in later expansions or the "let's have even more elves!" movement from late 2e and 3.x.

That having been said, I always considered gnomes more abominable than halflings. I always preferred the "halflings as boat people" from 4e, though, because it gave them their own flavor from the other farming races- humans, orcs, and elves. 
I personally love most of the conventional races.

Honestly I'd rather have the classic races in the core books rather than some of the new weird monster races. I was never really a fan of the 4E races, it seems they just went out of thier way to put in monster races for no good reason, and the races they introduced just got weirder and weirder.

I feel they should stick to the core because that's what the core settings use. If they're going to do Eberron, then include warforged and shifters, but don't try to put them in core and expect every world to suddenly have them.

The tolkien races are good as a basis because every world has them.
I personally love most of the conventional races.

Honestly I'd rather have the classic races in the core books rather than some of the new weird monster races. I was never really a fan of the 4E races, it seems they just went out of thier way to put in monster races for no good reason, and the races they introduced just got weirder and weirder.

I feel they should stick to the core because that's what the core settings use. If they're going to do Eberron, then include warforged and shifters, but don't try to put them in core and expect every world to suddenly have them.

The tolkien races are good as a basis because every world has them.



Actually, they should, if at all possible, keep the subraces primarily to the various campaign settings. Put two sub-races into the core book to help players/DMs build their own world and races.

Example of Eberron Halflings sub-races; City (+1 to maybe Dex or Int) and Talenta (+1 to maybe Con or Wis). These two types of Halflings are wildly different.  Shifter would be all kinds of fun and could easily include a variety based on the different shifter types. Even the Elves have wildly different subraces; Khorvaire Elf, Araenal Elf, Valenar Elf, and Xen'drick Drow. 
I love gnomes as lovable tinkerers of the magical and the mundane. Mad inventors essentially. That's always been their niche.
I see that most of you seem to be thinking that I do not want elves, dwarves, or halflings as core. This isn't true. I believe that they are the core races. I just hate the fluff attached to them. As I said in the original post, it is fluff & I can change it, but I feel like Tolkein's evil influence will start to spread from fluff to mechanics & this will really tick me off


I will say this, Gnomes have always carried a more hobbit feel to me than halflings, the way a see a gnome is to take a hobbit with personallity (which is very hard to find) & add Professor Farnsworth & a handful of badger speach. Blend & bake for 20mins
Professor Farnsworth would have made a fantastic Gnome.
I love all of the core races! And I love Tolkien!
this thread confuses me a little.

"i don't know why this imaginary species that this guy made up has to resemble the way that the guy who made these species imagined them"
this thread confuses me a little.

"i don't know why this imaginary species that this guy made up has to resemble the way that the guy who made these species imagined them"

He didn't invent them, he dusted off some old myths
Tolkien kinda invented his races. His hobbit has no real precedent. Maybe house sprites, but not really. His elves dont resemble Norse mythology, who are sky spirits. They arent really like Celtic sidhe either. He did correctly emphasize their human size. His dwarves dont resemble Norse mythology in any way. Notably, Tolkiens hobgoblin (Uruk-Hai) is an error unique to Tolkien.

The Tolkien races borrow from various reallife sources, but ultimately they exist only in the mind of Tolkien.
Only thing Tolkien I don't like is the walking, and walking, and walking that took place in the LotR trilogy. The Hobbit was good though.

Come to 4ENCLAVE for a fan based 4th Edition Community.

 

Here's my vote for the Halflings of 3.x/4 over the Fatlings of old.


Luckily, both exist in the current materials.  If you want a 3-4E halfling, make a Lightfoot.  If you want a hobbit, make a Stout.
I agree that the fantasy genre has moved way past Tolkien at this point, but I entirely get why the initial offering is grounded in the foundational document of modern fantasy.  

That said, I hope that there will be alternate setting options and/or guides flavored for other types of fantasy.  I really liked Eberron for one (pulp is a great and underused genre), and would very much like to see more Sword and Sorcery type settings.
I'll take Tolkein races over Dragonborn, Tieflings (as PCs), Drow, Githzerai, Shardminds, Wilden,   Dhampyrs, Shades, Revenants, Vryloka, Shadar-kai, Changelings, Kalashtar, 4e Warforged, Elans, Illumians, Killorens, Maenads
I agree that the fantasy genre has moved way past Tolkien at this point, but I entirely get why the initial offering is grounded in the foundational document of modern fantasy. 



The thing about fantasy is, there are so many different genres of it. Some are very high-magic, where almost everyone can do magic of some kind (Runequest), some are fairly high magic, where magic is not available to everyone but still common (Forgotten realms, Eberron, World of Warcraft), some are average, where magic is less common but still a high part of the world (older versions of D&D's base setting) and some are low magic, where magic is rare, and the domain of a few specialists (Dragonlance, Warhammer, and - of course - Tolkien).

Then you've got the anime style genres (Final Fantasy and the like), and some which include more steampunk elements (anything that has robots). Finally, while the majority are set in fictional pseudo-gothic worlds, there are some who argue that things like Harry Potter class as fantasy.

The point is, fantasy is now such a broad genre that it's impossible to classify each race within the "fantasy genre". An elf in Harry Potter, for example, is very different to an elf in Lord of the Rings. Some genres might have elves as evil monsters who hate humans, while others have them as fey-like creatures of the forest who behave more like nymphs and faeries than the Gilgalad type armoured warriors from Tolkien. So really, we can only look at these races in the context of how they've always been in D&D. Making radical changes to the races would be a very bad idea, for both popularity and continuity reasons.
Everything expressed in this post is my opinion, and should be taken as such. I can not declare myself to be the supreme authority on all matters...even though I am right!
Good post Ranger. As am open question to people reading this thread, do you think their are "tiers" of coreness for races? Like say:

T1: Human, Elf, Dwarf, Halfing
T2: Half-Orc, Half-Elf, Gnome
T3: Player Drow, Player Tieflings, Dragonborn, Warforged etc.

Would it be appropriate to have some core races, and leave most races and subraces to setting expansions and maybe an optional module?
Thewok has the right idea. Take the favorite representation of your halfling, dwarf, elf, gnome, etc. that is represented in D&D, and see how it could fit as a sub-race. I know the canabalistic halfing from Dark Sun, or the Gully Dwarf from Dragon Lance will not make it in the core; just say no to Kendor. But I will understand how races are presented to add my own version to compliment or replace what is in core.        
I love Tolkien´s work, but Middle Earth wasn´t created to be a RPG settin


If anybody doesn´t like Tolkien fantasy can play Dark Sun or Ravenloft. Other option is a settin like 7th Sea, Exalted or Dark Age: world of darkness, or creating a homebreed setting like "song of ice and fire".


 

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