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5E Ideas for Custom Races (using the upcoming Tasha's Cauldron rules)

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
So I just listened to the most recent Dragon Talk, where Jeremy Crawford described some of the new rules for races that will be released allow with Tasha's Cauldron of Everything. The most interesting thing I heard (as a lore nut) was that you could take these rules and use them to make your own race, or your own "one-of-a-king" character.

Now, when I heard that, I made this custom table. Essentially, it takes most of the released races and organizes them to show what combinations are available, which combinations don't have an answer in D&D lore, and which do but aren't released. I primarily used the Forgotten Realms wiki as a resource here, but you can apply those as a baseline for your own ideas!

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Green means there is no lore answer (and you can make one up or ban it), yellow means there is a lore answer (at least for FR), and italics means it isn't released for 5E.

Now, I don't personally think there should be an answer to each of these combinations, but I do think the new Tasha's rules can allow you to try some out! A tortle for example with fiendish ancestry is completely out-of-scope in the PHB, but these rules allow you to try out strange combinations like this.
 

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This was the first thing that came to mind immediately once they started talking about the Lineage system. Alot of the basic stuff is already there. And then any special abilities they come with, like cantrips or spells, come online at certain levels just like it does now.
 





MGibster

Legend
How about ideas for how these new races fit into the campaign world? As a DM, I feel a bit pressured to allow any of the official races to be used in the games I run. And it's not because my players are jerks, but they've spent money on these supplements and I certainly want them to have a good time playing the game. Since 5th edition started, I've only restricted racial choices in one campaign, Curse of Strahd, where I limited player options to the PHB because I felt many of the other available options were inappropriate for the setting. While I think it's a great idea to have a decent set of tools to build new races with, I have the sinking feeling that I'm going to feel additional pressure to allow players to create whatever race they want to play for similar reasons.
 

DnD Warlord

Adventurer
Why no Hobgoblin on this list?

Naturally I want a half-Hobgoblin, a Half-Fiend Hobgoblin, a half-Celestial Hobgoblin, a Hobgoblin/Elf crossbreed and a Hobgoblin/Orc crossbreed.
Half elf half hobgoblin in my eyes would look like an orange skinned half elf but be bread shouldered.
 

GreenTengu

Adventurer
Half elf half hobgoblin in my eyes would look like an orange skinned half elf but be bread shouldered.
Hmm... Choose Constitution as the secondary attribute, choose Athletics and maybe Stealth as your skills-- almost makes for a better Hobgoblin than that wizard-focused interpretation in Volo's Guide.
How about ideas for how these new races fit into the campaign world? As a DM, I feel a bit pressured to allow any of the official races to be used in the games I run. And it's not because my players are jerks, but they've spent money on these supplements and I certainly want them to have a good time playing the game. Since 5th edition started, I've only restricted racial choices in one campaign, Curse of Strahd, where I limited player options to the PHB because I felt many of the other available options were inappropriate for the setting. While I think it's a great idea to have a decent set of tools to build new races with, I have the sinking feeling that I'm going to feel additional pressure to allow players to create whatever race they want to play for similar reasons.
I think the idea here would be if you were in a campaign world where anyone can breed with anyone.
But I kind of get this while also I guarantee I am not on the same wave length as you.
I don't at all agree with what races WotC has decided get to be "playable PHB races" and which get relegated to supplements with crappy stats.

To me-- almost every world starts human-centric. If one wants to play magical immortal humans (elves) it is fine, they are kind of traditional, if one wants to play stockier subterranian humans (Dwarfs) then again it is traditional so it is fine, if one wants to play as small humans who are either really good at thievery (Halflings) or magic (Gnomes) then that's just fine.... but after that point? That's where I start having issues.

If you tell me my world has what are effectively humans with yellow or green or blue skin and tusks.... and it also has dragon people, you know which one I would choose as a player race? The humans with the odd skin color and tusks over dragons any day. Tell me those tusky people are generally evil and villains and live in the arctic condition. Tell me they are savage and barbaric. Tell me they have an evil god. Preach to me until you are blue in the face-- but, you know what? So long as they have free-will, tend to lose their wars against humanity, have been around for hundreds of years having interactions with humanity-- them being a playable race, without requiring them to be half-human, totally makes more sense to me than Dragonpeople. Dragonpeople ought to be way more badass, way more threatening and far more opposed to the spread of humanity to be 1st level shmucks who are errandboys for humans.

Same thing goes if you are going to tell me about the cat/wolf-like Goblins and Hobgoblins who are effectively kinds of humans with the Goblins maybe having the caveat of living twice as fast as anyone else, even if ones from a failed, highly stratified society with an evil god, compared to things like demonic/devil-blooded Tieflings. Let alone Warforged or Changelings or anything else so alien that it is basically impossible to relate to them.

I just absolutely cannot get behind D&D's idea of what deserves to be a player race and what should be utterly relegated to being simply "monsters" at all. And if what feels absolutely natural to me is something that no one can get behind, well-- I have spent nearly 30 years trying to convince people otherwise with only the mildest signs of progress. Probably anyone else who feels the same as me has more less just given up and walked away from the whole fantasy genre. Then again-- it seems like it is only D&D with this utterly backwards mentality as most other Fantasy worlds have more or less gotten on board with these idea.

WotC literally intentionally publishes utterly unworkable crap stats for certain races transparently with the goal of chasing anyone who wants to play those races out of their game. Just utterly punish them for still trying to play the game while being fans of those races who generally seem way more human than some of the races they have deemed worthy of people actually playing.

Even with the latest big video game release-- you can play as several kind of Drow or even the entirely alien Githyanki, but Orcs, even Half-Orcs, or Goblinoids are considered unworthy of being player options.
 
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Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
Why no Hobgoblin on this list?

Naturally I want a half-Hobgoblin, a Half-Fiend Hobgoblin, a half-Celestial Hobgoblin, a Hobgoblin/Elf crossbreed and a Hobgoblin/Orc crossbreed.

I could have included every race, but thought to only include the ones I know have at least one known half-race (gnomes and halflings actually can also mate with dwarves). But yes, I actually forgot there is a half-dragon hobgoblin in a module I'm forgetting the name of...
 


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