Hellfrost: Land of Fire!
Also known as camel goblins because of their unusual
hunched appearance, sand goblins were once a nomadic
race. Many have now switched to city life, finding it more
comfortable—not that they live a great life. Sand goblins
have an intense dislike of hard work, and so live as beggars,
thieves, and scavengers, feeding off scraps and the
few dinars they can make by selling stolen or scavenged
goods. They tend to live together in cities, forming small,
insular communities within the greater community. The
crime rate in such areas is very high.
Mages favor sand magic, something the goblins claim
to have invented (though this is heavily disputed by other
races). A few try their hand at jinn magic, if only because
it lets them bully something else into doing their work
for them. Dervish magic is viewed as hard work, since it
involves intense physical activity. Most other magic simply
doesn’t appeal to them.
Faithful goblins favor Apsu, god of water, Tamarni,
goddess of stealth, and Duamutef, god of nomads, the
latter left over from their nomadic days.
Sand goblins stand around 4’ high, and have leathery
brown skin. Their bodies are covered in coarse, brown
hair, which molts during the height of summer. Their
three-toed feet are wide, designed for walking on sand,
and their strange appearance is finished with a small
hump, which stores water in much the same way as a
Names: Abid, Bahdin, Hirad, Jahan, Oshnar, Toutak
(male); Atanaz, Daneh, Golara, Kotcha, Mamisa, Saba
(female). Sand goblins don’t bother with surnames anymore,
preferring to use nicknames instead.
Racial Edges & Hindrances
- Banned Edges: Sand goblins cannot start play with
the Noble or Rich Edges.
- Camel: Sand goblins require half the daily water
intake of other creatures their size (p. 68). One who
becomes a Disciple of Apsu (p. 20), requires just onequarter
of the usual amount.
- Sand Walker: Sand goblins’ splayed feet help them
move quickly over sand. They begin with the Sand Walker
Edge (p. 19), regardless of their Agility.
- Small: Goblins average just 4’ high. They are Size
–1, which also gives them –1 Toughness. They can take
the Small Hindrance, which represents reduced bulk.
- Sneaky: Sand goblins are renowned for their stealth,
and start the game with a d6 in Stealth.
- Untrustworthy: Sensible folk mistrust sand goblins’
words and deeds. They have –2 Charisma among
races other than their own.
Origin of the Sand Goblins
Sand goblins are a ubiquitous race, found in cities, towns, and nomad camps across Al-Shirkuh. While citizens are quick to place a hand on their coin pouches and shoo the filthy creatures out of their sight, few, if any have ever given much though to the ill-kempt, bizarre-looking, universally mistrusted race’s origins.
A few scholars, sages, and savants from the other civilized races (Devoted and Faithful alike) have given the matter more than passing thought, though there is no consensus of opinion among them. Unlike some topics, differences over the origins of sand goblins have never led scholars to engage in wars of words (or fists).
The most common theory claims sand goblins were once a race of men who dwelt in a now forgotten city somewhere in Al-Shirkuh. The majority who support this belief agree that the race fell from grace, suffering a terrible curse for their transgressions. Faithful claim the punishment was meted out by the gods, while Devoted hold that the race’s hubris led them astray from the light of the Creator and into bestial ways. A small few propose that the race’s fall was self-inflicted, the result of a magical attempt to make their form more ideally suited to desert life going badly wrong.
Another theory says the race was created by the jinn shortly after the invasion. Human slaves were merged with camels in an effort to create a slave race who could cope with the worst the desert could throw at them and carry heavy loads. Unfortunately, their plans went awry, for their creations proved too short and too lazy to be of use as manual laborers or expendable troops. Failing to think ahead, the jinn cast aside their race, leaving them to their own devices. As all creatures are wont to do, they multiplied.
Bedu legends, which predate those of the Hadaree, cast very little light on the matter. Some tribes’ storytellers do speak of a short race of “desert men,” yet other tribes make no such references. The ruins of Hekata are equally silent on the subject. This is perhaps not surprising, given that most remaining monuments are dedicated solely to death and the power of the might pharaohs who ruled over the land.