Gara Campaign Setting
Sha’Rian mythology aside, the story of the goblin people is perhaps the most tragic epic in Gara history. The early goblins were very magical creatures, more so than even the elves or gnomes, albeit in a different way. Taken in by the native fey creatures of the western forest, the goblins, referred to as Balinds at that time, were gradually infused with natural magical energy. While their power could not be called true spellcasting ability, daily life was made far easier through simply asking plants to bloom or bear fruit. Such wondrous powers exist today only within the walls of the Yeahk Sha village, coursing through the blood of the last remaining true Balinds who were sheltered by the elves during the final days of the Dwarvo-Gobbley War.
The goblin participation in the world’s first recorded war is a mystery. While it is easily proven that the dwarven king-priest was slain by a goblin, it is not clear if the individual was working on behalf of the Balind Kingdom or working as a free agent for other powers. Regardless, the Dwarvo-Gobbley War resulted in the loss of over half the lands once claimed by the balind nation and came to a head with the vile ritualistic curse laid upon the entire race by a circle of Gnomish wizards.
Calling upon their innate powers, some few balinds were able to survive the debilitating curse, but at great cost: the survivors lost their link to the natural world, and never again could use their wondrous abilities. The curse attacked the mind and the survivors were barely able to speak for a time… and even after regaining the ability to form words, their spoken language was deformed, badly slurred, and more often than not bastardized entirely for the sake of simplifying speach. A mockery of their former selves, the once proud balinds were even unable to pronounce their own race correctly and so the common term, goblin, was coined.
To add insult to injury, before the first generation of war survivors died, the rivers flowing from the dwarven mountains flooded violently and destroyed the last of the Balind Kingdom’s cities, their capital, Yeahk Thraga. Many of the surviving war heroes drowned, reclaimed by nature. Those who refused to roll over and die, however, fled to the sea by any floating raft or fishing boat. It was this force of nature which gave the goblin people their new life. With their nation all but destroyed, many of their greatest leaders dead, and with no home to return to, most goblins chose to remain at sea.
The choice to abandon the mainland was made all the more willingly thanks to the presence of Fotinar, the strangely spiked dragon who has claimed much of the former kingdom as his own and regularly eats the feral goblins who’d never regained their sanity.
Many goblins hold a grudge and have a racial hatred of dwarves. They tend to view other races with a mixture of jealousy and caution. Elves and gnomes on the other hand, are usually accepted and even respected. Even though it was the gnomish council who caused their suffering, the generations of gnomes since then have done all they can to make amends and pay reparations.