Dragon 422: Tinker Gnomes

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Was anyone else other than me surprised — and, I think, more than a bit disappointed — that they chose to present this as a completely new Race instead of as a Racial Variant of Gnomes, as they treated Draconians as a Variant of Dragonborn?  There's nothing presented in the race, feature-wise, that couldn't have been handled by trade-outs, and would have allowed much more diversity for those who like the race, especially in settings like Eberron and the Realms where the two "branches" would be much more closely related.

Otherwise, I was a bit... underwhelmed, I suppose would be the term.  Not just by the Tinkers, but by the whole magazine (though I suppose when they decide to supply 16 pages worth of tables for an optional system, that's what you'll end up with).  But I definitely think Tinkers would have been more... useful, yes, useful as a Variant.   I'll probably end up houseruling that the two races can exchange relative features and use each others' feats.
While I am suprised by the fact it's an alternate race, I like it. Another INT/CON race h*ll ya. Quick fix mixed with Quick tinker is awesome. All in all I like the tinker gnome.
 As far as the rest of 422 well.... the magic fiddle is nice and...so is the horn, plus nice fluff for Hyrsam. The 16 pages of how to build a random background is useful for beginner players, I'll probably use it for NPCs.
any article that contains the phrase "Roll on Table 30: Circus" can't be all bad
is the random background thing like the one in heroes of the feywild?
What is the purpose of "Use What’s at Hand"........ Proficiency with Improvised Weapons?

Isn't everyone already "Proficient" with them... that's why they are improvised and have crappy stats. (+0 Attack Bonus and 1d4/1d8 Damage).


Unless i am missing something big... this is the most obsolete Feature Ever...
Yeah, Use What's at Hand slipped through some editorial crack, that's for certain.  If I had to deal with it before they errata it, I'd give them a +2 racial bonus to attacks with improvised weapons (based on the similar feat Improvised Missile).  Maybe to damage too.  Hopefully they'll fix that one next update (though at this rate it might not be until next year).
Tinker Gnome, Svirneblin, and Gnome are separate races in the same way that Elf, Eladrin, and Drow are separate races.  Under DDN philosophy, they wouldn't be separate races (and we're seeing High Elves in DDN inherit much of the Eladrin identity), but under 4e philosophy, they're different enough to have completely separate write-ups with separate racial ability score bonuses, skills, racial features, racial encounter powers, racial utility powers, and racial feats. 

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

My only issue with that, Marandahir, is the fact that they linked Tinker Gnomes into the Forgotten Realms, into the exact same area that "plain" Gnomes already have been put.  Which means that they are not the equivalent of Eladrin vs Elf vs Drow, they are the equivalent of Moon Elf vs Sun Elf or Wood Elf vs Wild Elf — a subrace, not independent in and of themselves.

One thing that 4e used to have for it, before the hypocritical hacks that are currently screwing up DDN took over and ignored it, ws internal consistency.  If something existed, there was a reason for it.  There's as much of a reason to make Tinker Gnomes their own race as there is to make independent races of, well, every single other subrace out there.  Heck, just one month ago they published Draconians as subraces of Dragonborns.  If Draconians = Dray = Dragonborn, then how could it be anything other than Kender = Halfling and Tinker Gnome = Gnome?
 If I had to deal with it before they errata it, I'd give them a +2 racial bonus to attacks with improvised weapons.



Emphasis added on the important point.

I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for this to be errataed. We havn't seen any new errata in.... six months? Plus we got word yesterday they have abandoned monthly updates to the online 4e tools. That means that none of the recent 4e stuff is going to be in the tools for a long while, or perhaps never. I suspect that there will be no more 4e errata. What you see is what you get.
My only issue with that, Marandahir, is the fact that they linked Tinker Gnomes into the Forgotten Realms, into the exact same area that "plain" Gnomes already have been put.  Which means that they are not the equivalent of Eladrin vs Elf vs Drow, they are the equivalent of Moon Elf vs Sun Elf or Wood Elf vs Wild Elf — a subrace, not independent in and of themselves.

One thing that 4e used to have for it, before the hypocritical hacks that are currently screwing up DDN took over and ignored it, ws internal consistency.  If something existed, there was a reason for it.  There's as much of a reason to make Tinker Gnomes their own race as there is to make independent races of, well, every single other subrace out there.  Heck, just one month ago they published Draconians as subraces of Dragonborns.  If Draconians = Dray = Dragonborn, then how could it be anything other than Kender = Halfling and Tinker Gnome = Gnome?



We got information that says that Tinker Gnomes MAY be the Gond-worshipping Gnomes in Forgotten Realms.  But that's up to your DM to decide, just like using Genasi in Eberron or Warforged in Forgotten Realms; the parallel is not equivalent.  Genasi are present in Nerath, Forgotten Realms, and Dark Sun, but they are only present in Eberron IF your DM decides to include them.  Tinker Gnomes fall into a similar category.  They're canon in Dragonlance, but they proposed OPTIONS for customising Forgotten Realms and Eberron to fit Tinker Gnomes into them; they did not go ahead and say that Tinker Gnomes exist in those settings (however well-fitting they are in them).

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

My only issue with that, Marandahir, is the fact that they linked Tinker Gnomes into the Forgotten Realms, into the exact same area that "plain" Gnomes already have been put.  Which means that they are not the equivalent of Eladrin vs Elf vs Drow, they are the equivalent of Moon Elf vs Sun Elf or Wood Elf vs Wild Elf — a subrace, not independent in and of themselves.

One thing that 4e used to have for it, before the hypocritical hacks that are currently screwing up DDN took over and ignored it, ws internal consistency.  If something existed, there was a reason for it.  There's as much of a reason to make Tinker Gnomes their own race as there is to make independent races of, well, every single other subrace out there.  Heck, just one month ago they published Draconians as subraces of Dragonborns.  If Draconians = Dray = Dragonborn, then how could it be anything other than Kender = Halfling and Tinker Gnome = Gnome?



We got information that says that Tinker Gnomes MAY be the Gond-worshipping Gnomes in Forgotten Realms.  But that's up to your DM to decide, just like using Genasi in Eberron or Warforged in Forgotten Realms; the parallel is not equivalent.  Genasi are present in Nerath, Forgotten Realms, and Dark Sun, but they are only present in Eberron IF your DM decides to include them.  Tinker Gnomes fall into a similar category.  They're canon in Dragonlance, but they proposed OPTIONS for customising Forgotten Realms and Eberron to fit Tinker Gnomes into them; they did not go ahead and say that Tinker Gnomes exist in those settings (however well-fitting they are in them).


Actually, Genasi are only present in Nerath or Dark Sun — or, even, Forgotten Realms — if your DM decides to include them.  Same as any and every single other race in existence.  Your DM doesn't like Eladrin?  No Eladrin.   Your DM doesn't like Dragonborns?  No Dragonborns.  Your DM doesn't like Humans? *shrug*

So it comes down to this:  Which is better, taking an existing race which already has a bunch of support and simply making an "official" adjustment to it for the sake of a single solitary up-to-the-past-two-months-virtually-unsupported-in-4e setting, or creating a whole new one?  Especially given that they've also apparently decided that updating things like the Online Compendium and the Online Character Builder and Errata pretty much everything else DDI-related is way too much work for anyone to be doing, in spite of the fact that their customers are supposedly paying for that very service.

No, sorry, you're wrong.  I have nothing against Tinker Gnomes — in fact, I happen to like them when I first read about them in Creature Crucible: Top Ballista.  While I didn't mind their fey-version for 4e, I'm glad they finally came up with a more "traditional" version.  That said, they can — and should — be a subrace, one of equal standing with the existing fey-Gnomes and one which can utilize the same feats and features, as desired.

Instead, we've been given a barely-usable race which will sit on the vine unsupported, even more pigeonholed than Hengeyokai — who at least are supported by the character builder.
Top Ballista had sky gnomes and "regular" gnomes but nothing called Tinker Gnomes, although both sub-races had some mechanical tinkering abilities.  

The only gnomes actually called Tinker Gnomes were the ones in the Dragonlance setting.

 


Top Ballista had gnomes that were not fey-related slaves and rebels.  They had clannish gnomes who were more likely to be found tinkering with pseudo-steampunk stuff than casting illusion spells and hiding in the dark.

Just because there weren't called "tinker gnomes" doesn't mean that they weren't.  I'll happily point out that in Dragonlance, they weren't called Tinker Gnomes, either; they were simply "Gnomes."

So, if you'd like to read over the Top Ballista gnomes and please do me this favor:  Which 4e Gnomes fit the description in the book better — the original fey-Gnomes or the new tinker-Gnomes?

This means that they're native to Mystara, too, by the by, since that's the setting of Top Ballista.  And fit Eberron better than the fey-Gnomes.  And fit Forgotten Realms better than the fey-Gnomes  (seriously: having a different race of gnomes determined solely by if they worship a particular god or not?).

Besides, it still avoids the original question of why Tinkers had to be a separate race instead of a subrace.  For comparison, let's look at the Draconics from 421.  They used Dragonborn as the base race, and added subracial features for the Kapaks and Bozaks.  Very handy, I thought.  Allowed versatility in the Dragonborn race just beyond which dragonbreath they had, or maybe dragonfear.  Frankly, I thought it was an excellent addition to the system — even though Kapaks and Bozaks are only "legit" on Krynn.  I've got a player using one as a Dray in Dark Sun; I've got another using one as a half-dragon in a Points of Light campaign.  Allowing some of the features without requiring all of them was an excellent decision.

And then they produce this.... useless junk.  Well, not entirely useless; as noted, it can be forced into a subracial format, though its not easy.  That's something the game designers should have thought of, and should have done.  Instead, they slap something together, and throw it out there, and say, "See, we're supporting DragonLance (even if half of it is utter crap), give us your money (even though we won't add any of this stuff to the character builder or online compendium to be of use to most people)."
I just house ruled them as a seperate race called Munchkins
My only issue with that, Marandahir, is the fact that they linked Tinker Gnomes into the Forgotten Realms, into the exact same area that "plain" Gnomes already have been put.  Which means that they are not the equivalent of Eladrin vs Elf vs Drow, they are the equivalent of Moon Elf vs Sun Elf or Wood Elf vs Wild Elf — a subrace, not independent in and of themselves.

One thing that 4e used to have for it, before the hypocritical hacks that are currently screwing up DDN took over and ignored it, ws internal consistency.  If something existed, there was a reason for it.  There's as much of a reason to make Tinker Gnomes their own race as there is to make independent races of, well, every single other subrace out there.  Heck, just one month ago they published Draconians as subraces of Dragonborns.  If Draconians = Dray = Dragonborn, then how could it be anything other than Kender = Halfling and Tinker Gnome = Gnome?



We got information that says that Tinker Gnomes MAY be the Gond-worshipping Gnomes in Forgotten Realms.  But that's up to your DM to decide, just like using Genasi in Eberron or Warforged in Forgotten Realms; the parallel is not equivalent.  Genasi are present in Nerath, Forgotten Realms, and Dark Sun, but they are only present in Eberron IF your DM decides to include them.  Tinker Gnomes fall into a similar category.  They're canon in Dragonlance, but they proposed OPTIONS for customising Forgotten Realms and Eberron to fit Tinker Gnomes into them; they did not go ahead and say that Tinker Gnomes exist in those settings (however well-fitting they are in them).


Actually, Genasi are only present in Nerath or Dark Sun — or, even, Forgotten Realms — if your DM decides to include them.  Same as any and every single other race in existence.  Your DM doesn't like Eladrin?  No Eladrin.   Your DM doesn't like Dragonborns?  No Dragonborns.  Your DM doesn't like Humans? *shrug*

So it comes down to this:  Which is better, taking an existing race which already has a bunch of support and simply making an "official" adjustment to it for the sake of a single solitary up-to-the-past-two-months-virtually-unsupported-in-4e setting, or creating a whole new one?  Especially given that they've also apparently decided that updating things like the Online Compendium and the Online Character Builder and Errata pretty much everything else DDI-related is way too much work for anyone to be doing, in spite of the fact that their customers are supposedly paying for that very service.

No, sorry, you're wrong.  I have nothing against Tinker Gnomes — in fact, I happen to like them when I first read about them in Creature Crucible: Top Ballista.  While I didn't mind their fey-version for 4e, I'm glad they finally came up with a more "traditional" version.  That said, they can — and should — be a subrace, one of equal standing with the existing fey-Gnomes and one which can utilize the same feats and features, as desired.

Instead, we've been given a barely-usable race which will sit on the vine unsupported, even more pigeonholed than Hengeyokai — who at least are supported by the character builder.



Very adamant now, are we?  I agree that the settings only have what your DM allows, because of the nature of the game, but the settings also exist beyond what your DM allows.  The Novels are proof of that, as are established setting details.  For the races I mentioned, in the settings they "exist" in, the language used about them in setting details are absolute, while the settings that they're DM-approved "modular" additions to have suggestions along the lines of "you might…". 

The Tinker Gnome race is actually as adequately supported as any race, beyond the multitude of mostly non-useful racial feats with a few absolutely necessary racial feats, which were overwhelming in early 4e.  It's got racial substitution powers, racial feats, and a full write-up.  It almost certainly will go into the Character Builder in the next update, which they confirmed is happening (just a matter of when, not if).  I don't know what more you could want.  Making the Tinker and the Svirfneblin subraces of Gnome would probably have diminished the value of the races in 4e terms, locking them into ability scores that aren't useful for them.  DDN allows subraces to be done a bit differently, and because ability scores are different (MAD is desirable in DDN, while it's terrible in 4e), it's okay.  But in 4e, these really act more like Elves, Eladrin, and Drow.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

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