Kobold (Almish)

Small but tenacious, proud warriors and pioneers of invention

Kobold Background Traits

Game rules for the Almish kobold are identical to the kobold race detailed in the D&D 4e official rulebooks, except as noted below.

Ability Scores: Choose either Constitution or Dexterity. Instead of a +2 to the chosen ability score, you instead gain a +2 to Intelligence.
Languages: Draconic, plus either Common or Bestial.
Beast Kin: Your ancestors were amongst the many beast-kin who once ruled Alm. You are considered a beast creature for the purpose of effects that relate to creature type.

Far from cowardly reptiles, the kobolds of Alm are an inventive and enterprising people. Once the poorest of the beast-kin, the downtrodden slaves of their tyrannical “god“, kobolds changed the course of history through their ingenuity and courage. Learning from the relics left by the precursors, the kobolds discovered gunpowder and went on to destroy their god, revealing his divinity—perhaps all divinity—to be a ruse. This world-shaking event changed the way religion was perceived forever, and made the kobolds the pioneers of the what would later become known as “technology“.

After their emancipation, the Almish kobolds sent a band of heroes to the surface world to seek a new homeland. Each of these “Seven Seekers” formed their own mining colony, and they became the forebears of the seven kobold clans.

Play a kobold if you want…

  • to have draconic and canine traits.
  • to have helped overthrow a tyrannical divine overlord.
  • to be an inventor of machines and magecraft.

Physical Qualities

Almish kobolds draw their ancestry as much from mammalian ancestorsd as dragons, making them a curious mix of traits. They are small and thin creatures, long-bodied like a weasel, whose natural stance is sitting over their haunches. Though they stand flat-footed, they can use this natural crouch for a remarkable burst of speed when necessary. Their tails are long and surprisingly musular, eventually tapering to a point from a thick base that aids their balance.

Their long, toothy snouts are distinctly reptilian; some are broad and rounded like a crocodile’s, while others are pointed like a skink’s or even beaked like a tortoise’s. Their long, floppy ears, however, are distinctly more dog-like—as are their fur coats ranging from long and shaggy to short and bristly. Beneath their fur, tough scales are a testament to their draconic heritage; some have barely any fur at all, and even sport reptilian crests or fins.

An Almish kobold has a slightly shorter lifespan than a human, though they also mature somewhat more quickly. They exhibit no reliable sexual dimorphism—indeed, their sexual characteristics are not normally visible under their fur, meaning they care little for clothing beyond useful or pretty accessories.

Playing an Almish Kobold

Used to being looked down upon, Almish kobolds are typically stubborn and slow to trust, and distinctly uncomfortable with authority. However, this contrary streak makes them fiercely protective of their kin, including those outsiders they consider family. As adventurers, they are tough, determined creatures whose courage belies their small size.

Possessed of a frenetic energy, Almish kobolds are difficult to control or keep up with. They are renowned for a sort of bizarre sideways-thinking that leads them to ideas other races might never reach. Their off-the-wall solutions often seem incomprehensible to others—even moreso the disquieting devices they create—but it’s difficult to argue that they aren’t effective. Not all kobolds are gadgeteers, of course, but even those who are not typically share this creativity and unconventional outlook.

Philosophy is not a traditional area of interest for kobolds, but since the death of their ”god“, it has become a point of much curiosity. If the god is a lie, what of his promised afterlife? Much debate moves through kobold communities regarding this topic, though much of it seems a simple contest of exaggeration. It is broadly believed that they will eventually vote in the most outrageous theory.

Almish Kobolds are perceived as… Inventive, impulsive, inquisitive, energetic, irreverent, courageous, industrious, tough, skeptical, stubborn.

Names: Arytiss, Chicahua, Edar, Leirith, Manauia, Mejir, Nanixtl, Neitl, Skeltr, Talz, Tihuirl, Vaess.

Almish kobold names are taken from the draconic tongue as a mark of pride, and it is a common practice for a young kobold to choose a new name for themselves when they reach adulthood.

Kobold Backgrounds


“No no. Try this.”

Like the Seventh Seeker Vaess, you have an uncanny knack for engineering and craftsmanship. Always looking for a new development, you’re constantly furnishing your party with odd devices – and keeping their existing gear in working order. Why did you become an adventurer, when you could have had a successful career back home? Are you looking for new inspiration? Or stockpiling funds for a grand experiment?

Associated skills: Dungeoneering, arcana

Associated ritual: Enchant magic item (PHB)

Calamitous Tinkerer

“I wonder what would happen if…”

Even for a kobold, you have an insatiable desire for experimentation – and an under-developed voice of reason. Even working devices can be improved with a little adjustment. The occasional perilous misfire is simply part of the process! ”Normal“ people prefer to keep their distance from you – do you make your adventuring party nervous too? Or do you choose these companions because they have the vision to truly appreciate science?

Associated skills: Thievery, arcana

Associated ritual: Disenchant magic item (PHB)


“Hand me that pole.”

While other kobolds tinker with Aethyr relics or devise bizarre machines, you follow one of your race’s older traditions. Dedicated to exploration, you seek out the secret places at the very heart of the world. Accustomed to deadly hazards and vicious beasts, you are used to being in constant peril; do you rely on steely resolve to keep your feet moving, or is your sense of consequences as stunted as that of your inventor kin?

Associated skills: Perception, dungeoneering

Associated ritual: Detect secret doors (PHB)

Last updated: June 28, 2020
First added: April 27, 2019