Hello adventurers! Welcome to my spellbook and thank you so much for checking out the fourth race we’re gonna be covering the gnome ladies and gentlemen. That’s right if you’re unfamilar that little soldier protecting your garden he’s also playable race in dungeons and dragons which is pretty cool! Overall the gnomes are not super popular in all of my time at adventurers league i’ve only seen a handful of gnome players.
I find they’re often overshadowed by the halfling although they do have some benefits that are unique to them of course. Some of them are really really good, i just feel like they get glanced over a lot. In any case the gnome was released in the good old players handbook so everyone play or everyone reading this currently should have access to them, i don’t see why not. And they’re pretty cool little guys. With that out of the way let’s dive right into its description and then their naming conventions.
A constant hum of busy activity pervades the warrens and neighborhoods where gnomes form their close-knit communities. Louder sounds punctuate the hum: a crunch of grinding gears here, a minor explosion there, a yelp of surprise or triumph, and especially bursts of laughter. Gnomes take delight in life, enjoying every moment of invention, exploration, investigation, creation, and play.
- Male Names: Alston, alvyn, boddynock, brocc, burgell, dimble, eldon, erky, fonkin, frug, gerbo.
- Female Names: Bimpnottin, breena, caramip, carlin, donella, duvamil, ella, ellyjobell, ellywick.
- Clan Names: Beren, daergel, folkor, garrick, nackle, murnig, ningel, raulnor, scheppen.
- Nicknames: aleslosh, ashhearth, badger, cloak, doublelock, filchbatter, fnipper, ku, nim.
The gnomes are a little weird when it comes to naming because they have like over a dozen names or something to that effect. Most have half a dozen or so, reason being like everyone gives them a name so like the mother, father, clan elder aunts, uncles the whole nine everyone gives them a goddamn name. However for the context of playing dungeons and dragons gnomes have like this cool way of building in names. So when they’re dealing with creatures that are quote unquote stuffy about names they use shorter versions like just three names personal clan and a nickname and these are some common examples like alston, alvyn, boddynock, brocc for male names.
Then female names bimpnottin, breena, caramip kind of just weird fantasy names And then clan names would be very similar to their last names beren, daergel, folkor And then nick names is probably what they’d most commonly like to be called by their party members Aleslosh, Badger, cloak, doublelock stuff like that so usually something to do with their inherent background or maybe something they like or whatever come up with your own reasons.
Overall though it might be kind of funny to have gnomes interact and give like 15 different names or however many you think they deserve to have. Stuff like that might be kind of funny but it could get quite tiresome rather quick so use it sparingly. Now let’s move on to their traits.
Under their age: Most are expected to settle down into an adult life by around age 40. They can live to 350 or almost 500 years. So a very very long time very long lived. Which gives you a ton of cool role-playing opportunities of course.
Under Size: They’re between 3 and 4 feet tall and an average about 40 pounds. Your size is small. And you know what that means, it means your perfect projectile size for most barbarians. A cool potential idea.
Under Alignment: Gnomes are good-hearted and even the tricksters among them are more playful than vicious. Yeah an evil gnome conceptually doesn’t make a ton of sense. Although they do have kind of an evil sub-race we’ll get into that in a little bit but for the most part they’re all pretty cheery and light-hearted if not a little too aloof. Now let’s move on to their mechanics here.
- Ability Score Increase: +2 Int
- Speed: 25ft walking
- Languages: Speak, Read and Write common and gnomish.
- Darkvision: You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light and in darkness as if it were dim light.
Out of the gate they get a plus two to intelligence which is quite nice makes them ideal wizards. Their speed is 25 feet so it is a little shy of that 30 foot average. Under languages they can speak, read and write common and gnomish. And they get darkvision up to 60 feet which is pretty sweet. It’s always nice to see a creature with darkvision, creatures without do typically struggle so it is nice to have that in your back pocket. Overall the mechanics are quite strong for a player’s handbook race but let’s move on to their other traits.
The gnomes have one other trait that i don’t, i don’t know how the community really feels about it. I like it, i think it’s really really good but i don’t see a lot of people talking about it or particularly saying it’s overwhelmingly good. It’s not really super flashy i think that’s really why no one talks about it. But gnomes get gnome cunning: you have advantage on all intelligence, wisdom and charisma saving throws against magic.
This is really huge..especially early on if you’re kind of a squishier person, this will really help you out and even late game where every magic spell thrown up against you is almost guaranteed to kill you. This could very easily save your life. That being said, however it’s not fancy or flashy and it doesn’t do anything really outside of combat. So there is that, but it’s also worth noting that it just says against magic, it doesn’t say against magic spells so you can infer that any magical effect would be covered under this and because of that i think it’s really really great.
So, i don’t know it’s one of those things that mitigates risk more than it does to provide benefit. So take that for what you will. Now let’s move on to my personal thoughts about the gnomes.
I think that the gnomes are really interesting in terms of their viability in 5E. It really is kind of hit or miss, if you’re in a campaign where you can only pick from the player handbook races. I think they’re still perfectly viable however if you’re using extended racial options they get pushed to the race wayside pretty damn quick.
There are a handful of other races in dnd 5e that of course we’re gonna be covering. That have just straight out magic resistance or in some cases immunities to certain types of magical damage and relative to stuff like that. The gnome even with its many great sub-races…still kind of falls flat. However pick whatever you like is really the short answer.
If you find they work with your character, if you find you kind of like the vibe they give off then go for them i don’t see your downside to them. They’re not inherently underwhelming as far as i can tell but just know that this isn’t going to be very popular if you’re a min maxer. They do make good wizards just because of that plus two INT increase also the size of small lets them do some pretty cool stuff if you’re using optional rules.
Darkvision’s nice! Even especially if you’re a spell caster too, so it’s not so much that they’re bad. It’s just once again they get overshadowed relatively easy by a lot of the racial expansions that have happened especially in recent ish times.
That being said! however let me know what you think of the gnome and down beneath in the comments section. Be sure to mention any thoughts, questions, comments or concerns you have reagarding them, as well as any cool stories or build ideas you have. That being said, i hope you all have a wonderful day and as always happy adventuring.