Goblin Lore for Fictive Hack

Citizens of Assignation are a mix of goblins and humans for the most part, with a sprinkling of stonach and elves. The close quarters living with goblins and humans means they’ve gotten to know each other pretty well. Here are some common knowledge facts about goblin culture that newcomers may not know.

  • Reproduction. Goblins reproduce asexually. When they are well-fed and feel secure, they begin to grow buds. After a few weeks, the buds get to be the size of golf balls, then they burst, and a little goblin the size of a hamster tumbles out. The goblin spawn looks for a dark, damp place. It eats mold, fungus, and bugs. After about a month, it has grown to the size of a basketball, and it joins a clan. Over the next six months, it learns everything it needs to know about how to be a goblin, and it grows to full size. Goblins can produce about a hundred spawn over a lifetime, at the rate of about 10 a year, if perfectly content and well fed. A despairing goblin will chew off its own buds, so tiny goblins do not come into a hostile world.
  • Life cycle. Goblins live about 12-14 years before they die of natural causes. The exceptions are those who worship Dufell; they live 10 times longer. Priesthood of Dufell live until killed.
  • Oils. When goblins are overcome with admiration, their glands produce a kind of grease. It makes machines run better, and it looks really good on muscled bodies (also functioning as sun screen.) The grease must be less than 12 hours old when applied, or it goes sour. (If applied, it somehow stays fresh.)
  • Vulnerability. Goblins in a fight to the death will attempt to bite one another on the bridge of the nose; something about the way goblin teeth interlock on that sensitive spot allows for an instant kill. Goblins like the taste of nose. Plus, it’s totally embarrassing for the allies of the dead goblin.
  • Lobbacall. Goblins have a third lung that can swell, then contract and make a piercing call that sounds like “hobbalobba hobbahobba lobba hobba” and so on. It can release this call while they are running, or desperately struggling. Other goblins can instantly hone in on the sound, even through echoing chambers and twisting halls, tracking each other by the lobbacall. It helps them coordinate while hunting, escaping, or rescuing. It transmits no information but location.
  • Foods. Goblins like eating birds, the bones are like pop rocks crunching in their mouths. They can live on dirt, rotten carcasses, leather, and dew. They prefer fresher or nastier foods. They love raw fish, especially the bones and heads. The goblins of Assignation have lived close to humans long enough to have the cultural cuisine of human leavings, leftovers, midden heaps, and scraps. They supplement this with blind crawling worms and bugs and fish, birds and eggs, and each other. Various blends taste better with different emotions; sorrow stew, glee hash, victory haunch, etc.
  • Eating Humans. Humans have developed a funereal practice of gifting dead bodies to the goblins, who ceremonially receive the gift and enjoy eating the corpse. In return, the goblins don’t kill people for food. This initial increase in human safety was codified in local superstition, that those eaten by goblins are protected by goblins in the great dim of the afterworld, given shelter and lodging in gratitude for their gift of flesh. While creepy to outsiders, it adds a closeness to the humans and goblins who live together, and any human facing death will want assurance of being eaten by goblins ceremonially for protection in the next world.

This should help people taking on the goblin class, to understand what it means in this setting and context.

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2 Responses to Goblin Lore for Fictive Hack

  1. Tim D. says:

    Creepy, but very interesting. Can’t seem myself as a goblin, but this sure fleshes them out a bit.

  2. fictivite says:

    I figure in a setting where goblins are one of the core classes and hang out with everybody else, we should understand them better. =) And, yeah, creepy, because GOBLINS–am I right?!

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