The Civilized Races
The civilized races are those races accepted—sometimes begrudgingly—by society at large. Players may choose civilized races for their characters but those not listed in the Player’s Handbook require DM approval. Below is a quick description of the most common civilized races and their place in Gotham.
As described in 4E handbooks, dragonborn are a proud and militaristic race. The dragonborn Arkhosian empire once stretched across the continents, but it fell millenniums ago. Ankor was one of its great cities, and Gotham was built atop its ruins. Gotham dragonborn often feel a connection to this history that stokes their natural inclination for honor and duty. Some dragonborn hone their military instincts in the service of the Gotham Infantry, others spread honor and justice as paladins of Bahamut, and still others go rogue, plundering the lightless ruins beneath Gotham in search of relics of a bygone era.
As described in 4E handbooks, dwarves are renowned for their stubbornness, greed and craftsmanship. After spurning the help of the civilized races and losing their homelands, many dwarves relocated to Gotham to help establish its greatness. Dwarves enjoyed decades of influence and wealth by their hard work, but as politics bled into dwarf culture many clans repeated the mistakes of their forefathers, and stubbornness and greed fueled a decline that was compounded by the Crash. Some dwarves fight to restore mines collapsed in the Crash, others defend clan fortunes from bitter dwarf rivals, and still others plan to return kingdoms beyond Gotham, now lost in darkness, to their former glory.
As described in 4E handbooks, eladrin herald from timeless fey cities that worship knowledge and beauty. A small community of Eladrin were lured to Gotham by the knowledge accumulated within the walls of its Arcane Academy, and subsequently suffered great losses in its destruction during the Crash. Some remaining eladrin search Gotham for signs of artifacts and knowledge lost with the Academy, others focus on exploring the dangerous inner-workings of the Titan for clues to its origin, and still others turn to the sword, feeling uncharacteristic urgency about the tide of rising evil in the world.
As described in 4E handbooks, elves enjoy a special connection with nature and try to make time for beauty. The urban sprawl is unappealing to most elves but some have good reasons for migrating from the expanses of nature that surround Gotham. Some elves are diplomats sent from powerful elven kingdoms, others are shadow operatives making involved in plots against figures from enemy factions, and still others are activists, frustrating those who encroach upon and harm their natural homes.
As described in 4E handbooks, half-elves are a charismatic race with a strong sense of optimism and wanderlust. Half-elves are often drawn to the wide diversity and paths of life in Gotham and assume a wide variety of occupations. Many half-elves draw on their natural charisma to become diplomats for the rich and elite, others become sailors hoping for a glimpse of the world abroad, and still others become recorders of life in Gotham, gathering stories and songs from all walks of life.
As described in 4E handbooks, halflings are a good-natured, opportunistic people that can be found in any civilized society. They find fortune wherever they are, forming strong family and community bonds that ground and protect them. Some halflings adventure to end the tribulations of their curious families, others earn coin as naturally gifted spies for questionable patrons, and still others are cast out, doing what they can to survive in the shadows, among the criminal element.
As described in the 4E handbooks, humans are an ambitious and headstrong race with wildly varying skills and desires. Humans brought together the other races to found Gotham, advanced knowledge with the Arcane Academy and inspired many with their heroics, but also made bitter enemies in politics, hoarded wealth through class warfare, and enabled terrifying criminals. Some humans fight evils beyond the walls of Gotham, others work tirelessly to expose corruption within Gotham, and still others seek simple lives as trade guards between Gotham and the surrounding villages.
As described in the 4E handbooks, tieflings are a resourceful and self-sufficient race whose infernal appearance betrays dark pacts made by their ancestors. Tieflings have no more proclivity for evil than anyone else, but the social stigma remains. They rely on ingenuity and strong survival instincts to survive, earning trust from those who care to know them and returning it as slowly. Some tieflings pursue odd jobs in Gotham as rogues and warriors for hire, others attempt to shed their heritage in high society serving as royal guards and diplomats, and still others embrace their reputation, exploring the dark arts as a means to an end.