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Greyhawk creature
A goblin, as depicted in the 3.5 Monster Manual (2003).
Alignment Neutral Evil (3x); Lawful Evil (1-2E)
Type Humanoid
Subtype Goblinoid
First appearance

Goblins, called jebli in the Flan tongue or chebi in the Suloise language, are a fairly weak race of savage, bestial, barbaric humanoids. Goblins are the most commonly-encountered race of goblinoid, a general term applied to a number of related races.


Goblins typically engage in nighttime raids upon their enemies, sometimes riding upon worgs. They often find themselves dominated by more powerful creatures. In combat, goblins favor overwhelming odds, ambushes, dirty tricks, and similar tactics. Goblins often go to war with kobolds, as they share similar territories. Xvarts often act as intermediaries between goblins and kobolds, usually being bullied by the goblins and in turn taking out their frustrations on the kobolds.


Goblins are found in numerous places throughout the Flanaess.

Typical physical characteristics

Goblins of the Flanaess stand about four feet tall, and tend to have lanky frames. Their eyes, coming in various hues of red, orange, or yellow, are typically glazed and dull. Skin color is found in all shades of yellow, orange, and red, with all members of an individual tribe usually being roughly the same color. Goblins typicially clothe themselves in garments of dark leather, with colors usually being solid-looking and drab.


Goblins are usually neutral evil. Before third edition, goblins were most often lawful evil.


A goblin, as depicted in the first edition Monster Manual (1977).

Goblins usually organize in bands or tribes of 20 to 800, including noncombatants. The best-known tribes include Bitter Ruin, Black Agony, Death Feast, Dire Oath, Night Terror, and Poison Wound.

Goblins are normally dominated by more powerful creatures, but all goblins swear fealty to the local goblin king nonetheless.


Goblins have their own pantheon, led by Maglubiyet. Other members of the goblin pantheon include Bargrivyek and Khurgorbaeyag.

Other deities worshipped by goblins include Iuz, Dispater, and (rarely) Meriadar.


Gobins speak their own language, Goblin, a tongue shared with most other goblinoids.

Other goblinoid races

There exist a number of races related to goblins. These include:

  • Bugbears: Hairy, less numerous goblinoids of great strength and size.
  • Hobgoblins: Disciplined, warlike, human-sized goblinoids.
  • Norkers: Short goblinoids with tough hide and powerful fists.


Goblins were among the armies of the Fiery Kings around 3114 SD (-2400 CY). They were hired along with orcs and hobgoblins as mercenaries by both sides of the Baklunish-Suloise Wars. They fought against elves and dwarves in the Hateful Wars. They rallied to the cause of Iuz and played a significant role in overrunning the Bone March and the Pomarj.


  • Conforti, Steven, ed. Living Greyhawk Official Listing of Deities for Use in the Campaign, version 2.0. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast, 2005. Available online:[1]
  • Slavicsek, Bill. The Complete Book of Humanoids. Lake Geneva, WI: TSR, 1993.