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Kobolds are a race of creatures originating from Germanic folklore, where they were goblin-like malevolent spirits who were believed to haunt mines, occasionally leaving nasty surprises in the form of worthless, poisonous metal - the element we now know as "cobalt".

Kobolds shot to fame in /tg/ circles in Dungeons & Dragons where, ever since the very first edition, they have been small, weak creatures. In a straight-up throw-down they are the absolute hands-down easiest things in any edition to kill, including housecats and electric iguanas. Most campaigns have them as low-level cannon fodder for the adventurers to mow down, much like goblins and orcs. This continued in early /v/idja, because AI was for shit back then.

Their actual versatility depends on the system, but like D&D runs the gamut of harmless to devastating in numbers to downright impossible. That is because, despite being physically weak, kobolds are also described as capable trapsmiths (since the days of the Germans!), done to protect their lairs and dungeons - if the DM cares enough to run with it.

They are sometimes portrayed as reptilian creatures, sometimes as either wolf/dog-like or rat-like; D&D has actually been in both camps in different editions, and in fact 5e (presumably as part of its attempt to be the "Greatest Hits" edition) actually decided to split the difference and made them dragonkin with some reptilian and some canine features.

The patron god of the kobolds is Kurtulmak.

Kobolds with wings are known as Urds. White Dwarf posted a Winter Kobold in Fiend Factory long after everyone quit paying attention; in #42 they got "their own" god too, Kr'tollomc, whose relation to Kurtulmak is obvious.

Kobolds are very popular with Scalies.

Die Hard: With A Kobold[edit]

The kobolds' trapsmithery - combined with a penchant for lethal tunnel design and group tactics - were famously used in the tale of Tucker's Kobolds to illustrate that kobolds - and, indeed, any intelligent creature - can remain dangerous to high-level adventurers despite being statistically inferior in just about every way.

If played with the intention of being dangerous, kobolds are far and away the hardest throwaway monsters to fight. It could be likened to a sort of sick, hardcore version of Home Alone, with the kobolds taking the part of a severely deranged and sadistic Kevin McCallister and the PCs taking the part of hopelessly underprepared thugs walking into a situation they cannot have possibly foreseen.

John D. Rateliff and Bruce R. Cordell's final-stage-2e module Reverse Dungeon was a mainstay in this genre although YEAH WE KNOW starring goblins.

Through the Editions[edit]

A basic summary of the kobold look from 1st to 4th edition.

D&D Kobolds have undergone a long history of revision. When they first appeared in basic/AD&D 1e, they were considered kin to goblinoids, but also had distinctly beast-man type appearances - of course, these were the days in which bullywugs and gnolls were considered humanoids and thus could interbreed with humans, so not that weird. The result was a scaly-skinned rat- or dog-like humanoid with small horns and a distinct barking voice. The version first depicted in the Monster Manual was clearly a scaly dog-man, but versions by other artists were more rat-like. There's also the Pelinore theory that they're Sahuagin adapted to land - we'll get to this.

When AD&D 2e was launched, the first Monstrous Compendium presented an alternative version that was more visibly goblin-like; a small, ugly but fundamentally man-shaped creature with big, saucer-like eyes, a puggish face and small horns. This version was not very well received, and the artwork quickly went back to the more rodent-like visages of editions past. The iconic depiction of this was by Tony DiTerlizzi, in the AD&D Monstrous Manual.

Finally, in 3rd edition, kobolds became stunted, draconic humanoids; little reptile men with dragon-like snouts and stubby horns, and this interpretation, which made them claim kinship to true dragons, became their iconic face for all editions afterwards. Even Pathfinder reused this. The 5th edition version somewhat combined the reptilian and canine features, keeping them little reptile men with stubby horns on their heads, but giving them a more canine head with a black dog-like nose at the end of their snout, as well as a pair of longer horns that somewhat resemble dog ears at a glance.

In Arcana Unearthed, kobolds are the best the post-humanoid mojh can do to create offspring. They have some free will but are basically draconic mini-mes to their mojh master. And these kobolds cannot reproduce on their own.

Because the "dragonbolds" or "lizardbolds" are so associated with D&D, when kobolds reappear in other media, their appearance often changes. Because the goblinoid form is too confusing, most kobolds tend to be either ratfolk or dog-people. Warcraft has long used the ratfolk interpretation, with its kobolds being humanoid rats who are obsessed with finding candles to help them in their eternal mining. In Japanese media, kobolds as digging dog-people as popular for much the same reason why pig-men orcs are popular: Old School Roleplaying neckbeards have a huge influence on /tg/ related animes & mangas, and they retain fond memories of the original quasi-dog-like appearance of kobolds from AD&D 2e. This is why, for example, Polt of Life With Monstergirls appears as a dog-girl.

As a playable race[edit]

Kobolds have long been one of the playable monstrous races of Dungeons & Dragons, although their precise mechanical crunch has been... kind of hit and miss. Pathfinder and 5th edition's versions in particular have often been angrily derided for actually being weaker than Goblins, who are supposed to be on roughly the same level of inferiority on the totem pole.

  • There is a market in 3.5 for kobold PCs, since their draconian/reptilian ancestry make them one of the only +0 Level Adjustment races capable of qualifying for much of the additional material in splatbooks like the Draconomicon and the Book of Dragons. Pun-Pun, for example, is a rather famous CharOp design that allows a kobold wizard to attain theoretically unlimited abilities and attributes, using material from splatbooks and the Forgotten Realms campaign setting.
  • While 4e technically does allow for 0LA characters using the "racial features" rules in the Monster Manual, they effectively play like reptilian halflings, which get better bonuses. The lack of splat and reptilian-based bonuses makes them less appealing than 3e, but their inherent trap skills make them excellent rogues.
  • 5th edition's Volo Guide to Monsters reintroduced them as an option, and while they're not a bad choice per se (Small, +2 to Dex and Darkvision make Kobolds quite effective rogues), their sensitivity to daylight proves to be a real disadvantage in campaigns that aren't extensive dungeon crawls.


Kobolds were amongst the many "humanoid" races to debut in the Known World Gazetteer #10: The Orcs of Thar, alongside orcs, goblinoids, ogres, trolls and gnolls. Over in the UK, Imagine magazine (TSR owned!) for the Pelinore setting actually had the original of the Kobolds as a race, back then being more goblin-dog-like than lizardlike, as being the degenerated, land-adapted descendants of Sahuagin. So, as clade goes... ichthyostega-like.

Click "Expand" to see the statblock.
Kobold Ability Modifiers: -4 Strength, +3 Dexterity
Note: Like all Humanoids from "The Orcs of Thar", a Kobold has racial ability score caps of 18 in all scores bar Intelligence and Wisdom, which are capped at 16.
Note: Like all Humanoids from "The Orcs of Thar", a Kobold determines its Charisma score for interacting with humans and demihumans by dividing its Charisma score by 3 (rounding down) and subtacting the result from 9.
Kobold Natural Armor Class: 7
Can become Shamans (6th level) and Wokani (4th level).
Kobold's's level XP Required Kobold's hit dice
0 0 1d4
1 500X 2d4
2 1,000 3d4
3 2,000 4d4
4 4,000 5d4
5 8,000 6d4
6 16,000 7d4
7 30,000 8d4
8 60,000 9d4
9 120,000 +2 Hit Points
Subsequent 100,000 +2 Hit Points

2nd Edition[edit]

From the Complete Book of Humanoids. Before this, kobold PC rules (alongside xvart, goblin and orc rules) had appeared for AD&D 1e in the article "Hey, Wanna Be a Kobold?" by Joseph Clay in Dragon Magazine #141 (January 1989).

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifiers: -1 Strength, -1 Constitution
Altered Ability Scores: Minimum Dexterity and Constitution of 4, Maximum Strength of 15, Maximum Constitution of 16, Maximum Intelligence of 17, Maximum Charisma of 14
Class & Level Restrictions: Fighter (8), Cleric (9), Shaman (7), Witch Doctor (7), Thief (12)
Size: Small
Special Advantages: Infravision 60 feet, Intelligent or Powerful creatures will attack a kobold last unless it is obviously a threat
Special Disadvantages: Light Aversion (-1 penalty to attack rolls in equivalent of direct sunlight), gnomes receive a +1 to attack rolls against kobolds
Weapon Proficiencies: Club (spiked), hand axe, javelin, short sword, spear
Non-Weapon Proficiencies: Animal noise, animal training (giant weasel), animal training (wild boar), begging, close-quarter fighting, danger sense, fast-talking, gem cutting, hiding, looting, mining, set snares, wild fighting

3rd Edition[edit]

From Races of the Dragon.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
  • Ability Score Modifiers: +2 Dexterity, -4 Strength, -2 Constitution
  • Size: Small
  • Type: Humanoid (Dragonblood, Reptilian)
  • Base Speed 30 feet
This is faster than almost any other Small humanoid can get, making kobolds actually better for certain mobility builds than gnomes or halflings can ever be.
  • Darkvision 60 ft.
  • +1 natural bonus to AC
  • +2 racial bonus to Craft (Trapmaking), Profession (Miner) and Search checks; Craft (trapmaking) is always considered a class skill.
Later on in Chapter 6: Character Options, the skill listing for Profession says that kobolds also get some unusual perks to use Profession (miner). One kobold counts as a Medium creature to determine how much digging it can do, and up to 4 of the Small-sized fuckers can fit into a single square at one time. That means that they can actually dig four times as fast as dwarves and certain other underground races. In the book, it actually says that dwarves respect their mining skills.
  • Light Sensitivity: Dazzled when exposed to bright sunlight or a daylight spell (which can be negated by buying some goggle-shades later on in the same book)
  • Favored Class: Sorcerer

Additionally, Races of the Dragon has the Draconic Rite of Passage, where allows kobolds to endure a 9-day fasting, the permanent loss of 1 hp, and sacrifice a 100 gp gem to gain any 1st-level spell as a spell-like ability, usable once a day.

It should be noted that these basic stats were still considered a little weak compared to other races, so a web enhancement for Races of the Dragon beefed them up a tiny bit. While this didn't really make them all that "powerful", the update did actually make them a very interesting race. The additional abilities are:

  • Natural Weapons: It's just a little 2 claws / 1 bite set that does 1d3 for them all, but it does mean a kobold is never unarmed, as well as explaining how they are so fucking ridiculous at digging.
  • Slight Build: The opposite of the goliath advantage, you get to count as one size category smaller when it's advantageous, such as for size modifiers or when squeezing through a tight space.
  • Weapon Proficiency/Familiarity: Kobolds get Martial Weapon Proficiency in light pick and heavy pick (kind of the way elves and others get bonus profs), and treat greatpicks from that web supplement as martial instead of exotic.
  • Kobold cleric domain: Gives the cleric trapfinding, adds Disable Device and Search to class skills, gives some pretty fucking spiffy domain spells.
  • The Greater Draconic Rite of Passage: This awesome addition allows a kobold sorcerer who already did the lesser Draconic Rite of Passage to get a free fucking level of sorcerer that doesn't alter their ECL or anything. No shit; all you have to do is another 9-day fast, give up 3 hp permanently (which is the only reason you might hesitate to do it), and a 1,000 gp gem. Enjoy being overpowered, you asshole...
  • Draconic Reservoir feat: Your SLA from Draconic Rite of Passage is now 3/day instead of 1/day. Make it count.

Why D&D 3.5 Kobolds Kick Ass[edit]

It may not seem like it, but despite what a bunch of dipshts may say, 3.5 was the time when kobolds ascended to godlike fucking power.

You see, D&D characters have ages, and in third edition, your character's age can place you into one of four age categories. The first does nothing, and each one after that stacks an increasing penalty to your physical ability scores and a +1 to all of your mental ability scores, so a character who is older than Jesus will have -6 str, -6 dex, -6 con, +3 int, +3 wis, and +3 cha... unless that character is a dragon. Dragons get the mental benefits of old age without the physical penalties, because dragons are fucking awesome. But that doesn't do kobolds a lot of good, because kobolds aren't dragons, right? Enter the Dragonwrought feat. A kobold who takes the Dragonwrought feat during character-creation gets their creature type changed from humanoid to dragon. Page 39 of Races of the Dragon explicitly confirms: "Ability penalties due to age do not apply to dragonwrought kobolds. See the Dragonwrought feat, page 100." So, a 120-year-old dragonwrought kobold gets a free +3 to its mental scores in addition to all the other benefits of counting as a dragon, like low-light vision and immunity to magic sleep and paralysis effects. For a wizard, sorcerer, cleric, favored soul, psion, or any other dedicated caster class, which are already pretty godlike, dragonwrought kobolds can give you that little bit of extra edge that you need to achieve uber-godhood.

It gets better, though. You see, in addition to the four normal age categories that all characters have, kobolds have kobold age categories, ranging from Wrymling to Great Wyrm. True dragons, meanwhile, have dragon age categories with the exact same names, and although there is no strict and official definition of a "true dragon" anywhere in the D&D 3e literature, they have been described as dragons that progress through said age categories. As a result, some people have argued that dragonwrought kobolds are, in fact, true dragons. Why would this matter? Because there's a bunch of epic dragon cheese that is only available to true dragons, and if you can stack that shit on a kobold player character, you'll practically be eating Tarrasques for lunch.

As NPCs, kobolds know they are small and weak and can't do much about it. They can dig through a mountain faster than that chump John Henry (look it up, you illiterate fuckwits), and lay out enough traps to make the Tomb of Horrors look like a fucking carnival ride, though, so what other creature could use a legion of little minions who do nothing but dig out precious minerals and make traps to defend it all day? Fucking dragons, of course. Right there in Races of the Dragon, there's a blue dragon (it had to be blue) who actually tells her hatchlings that only kobolds are more reliable than family and the most diehard friends. Because kobolds don't sit on their treasure; they hand it over to a neighborhood dragon and ask for nothing but protection and a little help with enemies once in a while. For a dragon, the return on that investment is just too good: fabulous wealth, dozens of lethal traps to help protect it, and a nice little army of sneaky, smart little ranged attackers who won't hesitate to pin-cushion intruders with dozens of crossbow bolts. For the most part, everyone wins in that arrangement.

Kobolds may not be as elegant as elves, as sturdy as dwarves, or have the adaptability of humans. What they have is moxie and the smarts to play up their strengths, making them the "underdogs" you can't help but root for a little bit.

4th Edition[edit]

In this edition, kobolds received their first writeup in the Monster Manual 1.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifier: +2 Dexterity +2 Constitution,
Size: Small
Vision: Normal
Speed: 6 squares
Skill Bonus: +2 Stealth, +2 Thievery
Trap Sense: +2 to all defenses against traps
Racial Power - Shifty: At-Will power. You can spend a minor action to Shift 1 square

They later got beefed up in the Dungeon Survival Guide. This gave them the Reptile type, traded Stealth bonus for Dungeoneering, gave them Darkvision, let them swap their Dex boost for +2 Charisma instead, and replaced Shifty with Shifty Manuever, an Encounter power that lets the kobold and all allies within Close Burst 2 shift 1 square as a free action.

It also gave them five new racial utility powers; Flee! (level 2 Daily; kobold and all allies in Close Burst 2 get +2 to all defenses for 1 turn and shift their full speed), Load Slingpot (level 2 Encounter; kobold with a sling can fling a randomly enchanted projectile that will either give the target a turn-long attack penalty, set the target on fire, or immobilize them for a turn), Tunnel Scuttle (level 6 Encounter; free move action that can go up walls and through tight spaces without issue), Frantic Shift (level 10 Encounter; shift 1 square as a minor action, recharges if you get Bloodied) and Trap-Gang Method (level 10 At-Will; if you take trap/hazard damage with a non-minion creature adjacent to you, you can shift over half the damage you take to that creature).

On top of that, it also provided them with five empowering feats; Dragon's Indomitability (roll two dice and choose the result you want when saving vs. Fear and Stun), Kobold in a Corner (+1 per tier bonus damage against creatures that have combat advantage against you), and Shiftier Maneuver (when you use Shifty Maneuver, one target can shift +2 extra squares) for every'bold, Trapbuster (roll two dice and pick your preference when making Perception checks to detect traps, you don't ever trigger a trap if you fail a Thievery check to disable it) for those with training in Thievery, and Eldritch Momentum (if you move at least 3 squares away from where you started your turn, you gain combat advantage against all creatures under your Warlock's Curse until the end of your next turn) for the kobold warlock.

Truly, 4th edition was a glorious time to play a kobold.

5th Edition[edit]

Kobolds are a bit more silly in 5e.

From Volo's Guide to Monsters.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifier: +2 Dexterity
Size: Small
Speed: 30 feet
Darkvision: 60 feet
Grovel: Once per encounter, can use an action on your turn to beg, plead, snivel and otherwise humiliate yourself; until the end of your next turn, all of your allies gain Advantage on attack rolls made against enemies within 10 feet of you and who can see your pathetic display.
Pack Tactics: If at least one non-incapacitated ally is within 5 feet of a creature you are attacking, you gain Advantage on attack rolls against that creature.
Sunlight Sensitivity: You suffer Disadvantage on attack rolls and Wisdom (Perception) checks made when you or your target are in direct sunlight.

Until the 2020 errata of Volo's Guide to Monsters, kobolds had a -2 penalty to strength. This made kobolds and full-blooded orcs the only races in 5e with a racial ability score penalty. The orc's -2 to intelligence was also removed in the same errata (though, the orcs had already gotten the same change in the Eberron and Wildemount books).

The Grovel power is ridiculously useful, allowing you to grant Advantage to ALL attack rolls made by ALL your allies against a sizable number of enemies. That said, it's also the source of a great deal of skub; those who like their kobolds to be viewed as "truly pathetic" feel it's fitting, whilst players who want to play a kobold in order to fight against the perception of kobolds as weak, cowardly, stupid cannon fodder find it infuriating, because it's a racial trait that goes directly against their character plan AND it means you're inherently contributing less to the party. In fairness, it can easily be reskinned into a more heroic or warlike act, a comedy skit if you're going for something goofier, or even an elaborate and truly cunning deception.

Likewise, the Pack Tactics power is seen as extremely powerful. This is offset by your Sunlight Sensitivity, meaning that you yourself are less able to contribute in a fight. Especially since, being Small and having a Strength penalty, you're not likely to be in melee range in the first place, as you're far better suited for a bow-based rogue/ranger or a spellcaster.

In a nutshell, the 5e Kobold looks like an attempt at directly converting the 5e Monster Manual version into a PC race, for good or ill. An interesting thing to consider is that on their own, Grovel and Pack Tactics would be overpowered, but they are easily canceled out by Daylight Sensitivity, which is very likely to be the norm as most adventuring parties will choose to take their long rests during the night. From a meta-gaming perspective, the best way to play a kobold is as a team-player, which is very fitting for its lore as a creature that is weak on its own but powerful in large numbers. Consequently, it shouldn't be too surprising to see a kobold player find great success playing a class focused around the use of a companion, such as a Battlesmith Artificer or a Beastmaster Ranger.


Mordekainen's Monsters of the Universe, which re-statted a lot of monsters and races in the post-Tasha's standards, and the Kobolds were among those that got a rather drastic rewrite.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifier: +2 to one stat and +1 to a second or +1 to three different stats
Size: Small
Speed: 30 feet
Darkvision: 60 feet
Draconic Cry: As a bonus action, you let out a cry at your enemies within 10 feet of you. Until the start of your next turn, you and your allies have advantage on attack rolls against any of those enemies who could hear you. You can use this trait a number of times equal to your proficiency bonus, and you regain all expended uses when you finish a long rest.
Kobold Legacy: Kobolds' connection to dragons can manifest in unpredictable ways in an individual kobold. Choose one of the following legacy options for your kobold:
  • Craftiness: You have proficiency in one of the following skills of your choice: Arcana, Investigation, Medicine, Sleight of Hand, or Survival.
  • Defiance: You have advantage on saving throws to avoid or end the frightened condition on yourself.
  • Draconic Sorcery: You know one cantrip of your choice from the sorcerer spell list. Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma is your spellcasting ability for that cantrip (choose when you select this race).

Compared to the original draft, this version is considerably stronger. Genericization of the stats aside, the comical grovel is replaced with something considerably stronger by affecting a lot more enemies even if it has fewer uses. The loss of Pack Tactics is probably the worst issue, but the option between an extra skill or a free cantrip are both some decent perks.

3rd Party Settings[edit]

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifier: +2 Dexterity, +1 Intelligence
Size: Small
Speed: 30 feet
Darkvision: 60 feet
Blindsider: If at least one non-incapacitated ally is within 5 feet of a creature you are attacking, you gain Advantage on attack rolls against that creature. You can only benefit from this trait with one attack per round.
Sunlight Sensitivity: You suffer Disadvantage on attack rolls and Wisdom (Perception) checks made when you or your target are in direct sunlight.
Tinkerer: You have Proficiency with one set of Artisan's Tools of your choice from the following list: Alchemist's Supplies, Mason's Tools, Smith's Tools, or Tinker's Tools.
World of Farland
Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifiers: +2 Dexterity
Size: Small
Speed: 30 feet
Darkvision 60 feet
Tricksy: You have Proficiency with the Trapmaking Kit.
Sunlight Sensitivity: You suffer Disadvantage on attack rolls and Wisdom (Perception) checks made when you or your target are in direct sunlight.
Pack Tactics: Once per short rest, when attacking an enemy adjacent to an ally who isn't incapacitated, you can gain advantage on the attack roll. If this attack hits, it does +1d6 damage, increasing to +2d6, +3d6 and +4d6 at levels 6, 11 and 14 respectively.
Subrace: Choose the Common, Winged or Wyrmsblood subrace.

Common Kobolds are known as "Murgs", which means "Scavenger" or "Rat" in the Dark Tongue. They gain +1 Constitution and the Iron Stomach trait, which lets them even spoiled or rotten food whilst also giving them Proficiency in Survival, Advantage on Constitution saving throws, and Resistance to Poison damage. Despite their name, they are not ratfolk; those are the ferekkin.

Winged Kobolds, obviously, can fly. They gain no extra ability score increase, but have a Fly speed of 30 feet. They can't fly if wearing armor they're not proficient in, nor a backpack specifically tailored to fit around their wings. Additionally, they need to pass a Constitution save whenever they take damage whilst flying (DC 10 or 1/2 the damage, whichever is higher) or else they immediately fall to the ground.

Wyrmsblood Kobolds claim distant dragon heritage and an attendant affinity for sorcery. They gain +1 Charisma and can cast Blade Ward, as well as gaining the ability to cast Charm Person 1/day from 3rd level, both using Charisma as their spellcasting ability score.


In addition to appearing in the Advanced Race Guide and Inner Sea Races, Kobolds got their own mini-booklet specifically aimed at Kobolds of Golarion, with a bunch of new traits - including special "bonus" traits based on what color their scales were.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Ability Score Modifiers: +2 Dexterity, -4 Strength, -2 Constitution
Size: Small
Type: Humanoid (Reptilian)
Speed: 30 feet
Darkvision 60 feet
Armor: +1 natural armor
Crafty: +2 racial bonus to Craft (Traps), Perception, and Profession (Miner), Craft (Traps) and Stealth are always Class Skills
Weakness: Light Sensitivity

Alternate Racial Traits:

  • Beast Bond: Replace Crafty with +2 racial bonus to Handle Animal and Ride checks, with Handle Animal and Ride always being Class Skills.
  • Dragon-Scaled: Replace Armor with Resistance 5 to either Acid, Cold, Electricity or Fire Damage.
  • Gliding Wings: Replace Crafty with the ability to Glide; when falling, a kobold can make a DC 15 Fly check to land without injury as if using the Feather Fall spell, and if it succeeds on this check, can then make a second DC 15 Fly check to move 5 feet laterally for every 20 feet fallen.
  • Jester: Replace Crafty with +2 racial bonus to Diplomacy and Perform checks, with Diplomacy and Perform always being Class Skills.
  • Dayrider: Downgrades a kobold's Darkvision to Low-Light Vision, but removes its Light Sensitivity.
  • Dragonmaw: Replaces Armor with a D4 damage bite attack that can also deal a bonus +1d6 fire/acid/cold/lightning damage (chosen and set at character creation) 1/day.
  • Echo Whistler: Replaces Crafty with the ability to try and make a Bluff check with just a bit of vocal mimicry 3/day, gaining a +2 bonus to the check in any place that would generate an echo.
  • Frightener: Replaces Armor with a +1 DC boost to any Fear spell that the kobold casts.
  • Prehensile Tail: Replaces Armor with a +2 bonus to Acrobatics & Climb checks and the ability to draw a hidden weapon as a move action.
  • Secret Strider: Replaces Crafty with the ability to, twice per day, enter a super-sneaky mode for 1 minute. During this time, the kobold leaves no trail when moving through natural surroundings, increasing the DC of Survival checks to track it by +10.
  • Shoulder To Shoulder: Replaces Crafty with a +1 bonus to Aid Another checks, the ability to occupy the same space as another Small creature without penalty, and the ability to gain a +1 AC bonus when sharing a space with another kobold with this trait.
  • Spellcaster Sneak: Replaces Crafty with a +2 bonus to Stealth checks. A kobold spellcaster with this trait can also freely apply Silent Spell to a spell 1/day.
  • Wild Forest Kobold: Replaces Crafty with a +2 bonus to Perception and Survival checks. Additionally, Stealth and Survival are always class skills for this kobold.
  • Wyrmcrowned: Replaces Crafty with a +2 bonus to either Diplomacy or Intimidate and the ability to count the chosen skill as always being a class skill.

Pathfinder 2nd Edition[edit]

Pathfinder 2nd Edition's kobolds shows a notable redesign in appearance from 1st edition, now looking more like salamanders or other lizards, with wider heads and a relatively thicker body (no, not that sort of thick). If nothing else, the wider and flatter heads do make the "three kobolds in a trenchcoat" trick a little more structurally-stable.

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
Hit points: 6
Size: Small
Speed: 25 feet
Ability Boosts: Dexterity, Charisma, Free
Ability Flaw: Constitution
Languages: Common and Draconic, as well as any other languages equal to your intelligence modifier.
Darkvision: You can see in darkness and dim light just as well as you can see in bright light, though your vision in darkness is in black and white.
Draconic Exemplar: You draw minor powers from your draconic exemplar. Choose a type of chromatic or metallic dragon to be your exemplar. This determines your scale color and appearance, and dragons sometimes look more favorably upon those kobolds who resemble them, at the GM’s discretion. Your exemplar may also determine details of other abilities you have, using the Draconic Exemplars table.

In addition to all of these, Kobolds get a few feats like Cringe, which works a lot like 5e's Grovel, Cower, and Beg, except here it's optional.

Trigger: A creature you are aware of critically succeeds on a Strike against you and would deal damage to you.
With pitiful posturing, you cause your foe to pull back a deadly attack. The attacking creature takes a circumstance penalty to the damage of the triggering Strike equal to your level + 2. This penalty applies after doubling the damage for a critical hit. The attacker is then immune to your Cringe for 24 hours.
The Races of Pathfinder
Player's Handbook: Dwarf - Elf - Gnome - Half-Elf - Half-Orc - Halfling - Human
Race Guide:
Aasimar - Catfolk - Changeling - Dhampir - Duergar
Drow - Fetchling - Gillman - Goblin - Grippli - Hobgoblin
Ifrit - Kitsune - Kobold - Merfolk - Nagaji - Orc - Oread
Ratfolk - Samsaran - Strix - Suli - Svirfneblin - Sylph
Tengu - Tiefling - Undine - Vanara - Vishkanya - Wayang
Bestiaries: Android - Astomoi - Caligni - Deep One Hybrid - Gathlain
Gnoll - Kasatha - Munavri - Naiad - Orang-Pendak
Reptoid - Rougarou - Shabti - Trox - Yaddithian
Adventure Paths: Being of Ib - Kuru
Inner Sea Races: Ghoran - Monkey Goblin - Lashunta - Skinwalker
Syrinx - Triaxian - Wyrwood - Wyvaran
Ultimate Wilderness: Vine Leshy
Blood of the Sea: Adaro - Cecaelia - Grindylow - Locathah - Sahuagin - Triton
Planar Adventures: Aphorite - Duskwalker - Ganzi



Aw, they think they're people!

Cutebolds are like Kobolds only incredibly cute.

They are pitiful and childish in everything they do, and are innocent enough to not know how to procreate. All they know is that rubbing their noses gives them a guilty pleasure. They are no less "harmless" when played properly, though. They tend toward the dog-like for extra D'aww.

This interpretation of the Kobold is thought to have been inspired by their depiction in Dwarf Fortress, where they steal your supplies, but seem to do it in the most endearingly stupid manner possible.

Cutebold stats:

Click "Expand" to see the stablock.
+2 Dex, +2 Cha, -2 Int
Charm person once per day as a spell like ability
Low light vision and scent

Kobold Commandos[edit]

Another /k/obold.
Fuck You Paladin I have a Panzerfaust!

A popular way to portray kobolds in a more contemporary fashion, kobold commandos portray kobolds as being part of the military, especially special forces. Other anons point out that with the fact that they don't hold up in a one-on-on fight with other low level monsters, attack in large numbers and from ambush, have a predisposition towards traps and dig big underground tunnels, they're kind of like the Viet Cong. This is probably rooted in the old story about Tucker's Kobolds, and there are similarities between these two depictions. Of the various 'cannon fodder' enemies, Kobolds seem to be the most organized, and with that organization a DM has a lot of leeway to look into all the ways one can use fortifications to fuck with an attacker, and turn them upon unsuspecting players. D20 Modern's urban Arcana made this version actually canon, right down to an almost Orkish love of DAKKA, with the popular kobold character Meepo, originally from the module The Sunless Citadel, getting transported into the world of d20 modern and joining an army, and later returning to his own world bringing his shotgun with him.

Kobold Models[edit]

Despite being a part of D&D since the very beginning, kobold tabletop models are rather rare(see below for links). For the longest time, Reaper Miniatures has been pretty much the only company that made them in squad/mob size numbers, and even then the sculpts... aren't that spectacular. However, as of May 2017 Westfalia Miniatures has Kickstarted their new tabletop wargame Strongsword, and included with it are models (damn good ones, too) for an entire kobold army! What's more, in the Strongsword lore the little bastards apparently cause enough mayhem to be responsible for a conflict called (I shit you not) the Kobold Wars.

Warhammer Fantasy[edit]

The Kobolds of Warhammer Fantasy were merely a subspecies of Goblin, whose only morphological difference was being skinnier and with more angular proportions. The exception to this was the Fire Kobold, a form of Kobold covered in red patches often mistaken for diseased rash. The Fire Kobolds held the unique ability to manifest fire through throwing fireballs or spitting out small gouts of flame.


LamiaMonstergirl.pngThis article or section is about Monstergirls (or a monster that is frequently depicted as a Monstergirl), something that /tg/ widely considers to be the purest form of awesome. Expect PROMOTIONS! and /d/elight in equal measure, often with drawfaggotry or writefaggotry to match.
The MGE Kobold, one of the two most iconic depictions of the kobold as a cute doggie-girl.
The basic approach the West takes to sexy kobolds.

Given the popularity of kobolds, there are also a lot of people who like them In That Way. The two most popular kobold monstergirl depictions are the dogbold and the little dragonbold: Goblinoid kobolds are pretty much immune to this treatment, mostly because at that point you just end up with a monstergirl goblin and maybe a few special kinks, at which point you're usually asking yourself "why is this not just called a goblin?".

Dogbolds are mostly seen in Japanese media like Life With Monstergirls and the Monster Girl Encyclopedia, where they are humanoid dogs to some degree. In the former they have small snouts instead of noses, fur covering their bodies and massive hands. Polt is the only kobold seen so far, the owner of a gym and creator of the "kobolds are all hyperactive dogs who'll drag you along if you take them for walkies" stereotype. In the latter they are humans with dog-like disposion; submissive, eager to please, excitable and won't stop doing something until you tell them to.

In the west, meanwhile, the small dragon type kobold is massive bait for the furry subgroup known as scalies: those with an interested in scaled rather than furred animals. Dragons are by far the most popular animal in the group, and not only are kobolds essentially a smaller version of dragons, the fact that kobolds are generally depicted as the loyal and submissive servants to their draconic masters means it's not hard to sexualize that relationship. Humanization is rarely done because that would ruin their small dragon appeal. While in some cases they are drawn with humanoid penises or breasts, often they are depicted as they are in the books (except, you know, naked). This includes very minute sexual dimorphism, meaning that any kobold could be a trap. Often included is them having a cloaca, meaning that their pelvic region is reduced to a single nondescript opening that they piss, jizz, and crap out of (....hot?). These kobolds are often portrayed with wide, egg-laying hips in order to give them some shortstack appeal.

Canonical Kobold Deviance[edit]

In what has to be the weirdest of coincidences, ever since kobolds got their dragon-linked makeover in 3rd edition, there's been some really weird sexual elements snuck into their lore, although what that element is depends on the edition.

Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition: Races of the Dragon states that kobolds go into heat and are compelled to breed, like animals, but they're also sapient beings, so they also form permanent pair-bondings. They reconcile these different facts with the statement that extra-marital sex and breeding is considered "no biggie" in kobold society, because the urge hits when it hits, and they can't control themselves when it happens, so there's no point getting jealous about it.

Pathfinder: Kobolds of Golarion has become somewhat memetically infamous for its presentation of kobold biology. Classic Monsters Revisited also established kobolds as being super-breeders, with females producing eggs throughout their lives and producing bigger and bigger clutches as they get older.

Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition: The Dungeon Survival Handbook states that kobolds worship dragons to the extent of willingly committing suicide by feeding themselves to hungry dragons because they view it was a way to transcend their kobold natures and become one with their devourer. While they are not stated to get any sexual pleasure from this act of getting eaten, you just know that pointing as much out will fall on deaf ears with many voraphiles.

Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition: Volo's Guide to Monsters states that, like certain frogs and fish, kobolds are environmentally triggered gender-benders, switching between male and female in response to the overabundance of one gender in order to facilitate breeding. So theoretically, if you want kobolds, you just stick two kobolds in a cage and it doesn't matter what sexes they started out as, they'll become a breeding pair and start making eggs soon enough.


See also[edit]