Much like their wild cousins, Urban Kobolds are weak, cowardly, and cunning. They proudly claim kinship to dragons, but beneath all the bluster, the comparison to their glorious cousins leaves kobolds with a profound sense of inadequacy. They are hardworking, clever, and blessed with a natural talent for mechanical devices and mining. Kobold tactics specialize in traps and ambushes, but kobolds enjoy anything that allows them to harm others without putting themselves at risk. Often, they seek to capture rather than to kill, taking out their frustrations on the helpless victims they drag back to their claustrophobic lairs.
Urban Kobolds are small, bipedal reptilian humanoids. Most stand around 2 feet tall and weigh about 25 pounds. They have powerful jaws for creatures of their size and noticeable claws on their hands and feet. Kobolds' thick hides vary in colour, and most have scales that match the hue of one of the varieties of dragons, with red scales being predominant. A few kobolds, however, have more exotic colours such as orange, yellow, black, grey, green, or even blue, which in some tribes raises or lowers an individual's status in the eyes of his fellows.
Urban Kobolds thrive in cramped quarters, living in vast warrens deep beneath the surface. Most kobolds get along well with their own kind. While squabbles and feuds do occur, the elders who rule kobold communities tend to settle such conflicts swiftly. Kobold clans are made up of smaller family units called nestmates. Kobolds raise their young communally with no one mother or father. Nestmate groups can have as many as 20 individuals sharing a cave space. These nestmate caves are usually found close to the large central cavern that makes up the clan’s home. Some nestmates give their family group a nickname, these are usually named for some great deed or mascot animal.
Urban Kobolds, like their more wild cousins are often cowardly and practical, and often end up bowing to more powerful beings. If these creatures are of another humanoid race, kobolds often scheme to free themselves from subjugation as soon as possible. If the overlord is a powerful draconic or monstrous creature, however, kobolds see no shame in submission, and often shower adoration on their new leader. This is especially true if the kobolds serve a true dragon, who they tend to worship outright.
Kobolds consider both dwarves and elves to be deadly rivals. Kobolds fear the brute power of half-orcs and resent humans for the dominant status that race enjoys. They believe half-elves blend the best qualities of both parent races, which strikes kobolds as fundamentally unfair. Kobolds believe halflings, small in stature, make wonderful targets for practical jokes. Kobolds see gnomes as perfect victims which sparked waves of retaliation and reprisal that have echoed on down through the centuries and earned the kobolds' permanent enmity.
Beneath Firamustus University lives the Golden Flame clan of Urban Kobolds. They often raid the campus for food and resources, taking enough to survive but not too much as to cause retribution.
There are four distinct varieties of kobold: the industrious Digger Kobold, the magical Loredrake Kobold, the blessed Dragonheart Kobold, and the crafty Tinkerer Kobold. Choose one of these subraces;
Digger Kobolds form the backbone of kobold society, creating new living spaces and doing much of the manual labour involved in keeping the clan running. They also make up the largest majority of Urban Kobolds.
Loredrake Kobolds are touched by the arcane and are able to wield simple magic from a young age. They are much less common that other kinds of kobolds.
Dragonheart Kobolds are blessed by the dragon ancestors and are able to channel a draconic breath that is a weak imitation of a true dragon’s breath weapon. They are tough and resilient, but also the least common Urban Kobold variant.
Tinkerer Kobolds are always experimenting and seeking out new information in order to build their next creation. Many kobold artists and engineers are tinkerers, making them the second most common Urban Kobold variant.
These Kobolds are a homebrew variant created by our GM Ben. If you want to use them in your own campaign you can follow the link below to add them to your collection on DnD Beyond, or simply print them out for home use.
Due to the way DnD Beyond works with homebrew some prototype versions of the subraces may also appear as options, only the ones with Firamustus in the title are the official ones we used in Kobold Kapers.
In order to add the homebrew to your collection you must use the add to collection button at the bottom of the page, then when you create a character tick the "use homebrew" option to enable the new races. Have fun!