What are some of your favorite races?


I’ve been thinking a bit about race design for RPG and novels in general and something that I think makes a race stand out among others is the culture and theme of a race. When someone says, Orc, Elf or Dwarf, I can close my eyes and not just imagine the physical features of the race, but also their culture, attitude, what their “stuff” looks like, and i’m curious if others have races that you think really hit the nail on the head.

Most of the ones that stick to my mind come from a while ago, or have been used in several different novels/games which helps flesh out their “lore” so I’m curious about any modern fantasy/sci fi races that you think really capture the essence entirely of a specific creatures lore.

The Ogier in Wheel of Time for example i would classify, Gnolls, Goblins, Tieflings, most of the “traditional” d&d fantasy races I would say also fall into this category, so go ahead, spill it to me, what are some of your favorites and why! How do they capture the essence of the race entirely?


I love Sesheyans, Loxodons, Halflings (but mostly because of their Jerren counterparts), snakemen, and ratmen. For now. That list is bound to grow!


I mostly play Humans or Elves but I also like

Natural Born Lycanthropes from 3.5e Animal HD+3 ECL (Weretiger specifically +9ECL).

Shifters and Warforged from Ebberon were cool.

Aasimars are my go to race for divine casters or lancers.

Dwarves or Gnomes for Artificers or Machinists (thematic reasons)

Tremere in VTM was my go to clan

Full Moon Cast Lunar in Exalted

Just to name a few.


Halfling/Hobbit for me. I like tortles too, but thats just so I can play as a ninja turtle.


I like new takes on “classical” (probably read: tolkienesque) fantasy races like the Mostali or Aldryami from Runequest. Since Runequest is very lore-heavy, I know for instance how the Mostali came into being, how their society is structured, what they believe, what they classify as heresy, what god they worship etc.
Lots of the Pathfinder- and Starfinder-ancestries also do it for me and although I haven’t read anything lore-wise, I know the info is there.
TROIKA! is a treasure trove of weird and gonzo characters that are explicitly not-EDO-fantasy. They are also intentionally underdefined (or have lots of implicit worldbuilding in how they are described. Although the players have to do the heavy-lifting in terms of making sense of it).


How about the Kzin from Larry Niven’s Man - Kzin wars novels! Powerful Tiger like aliens. Figure a +1 for strength and a claw attack d6 +1!