And by stupid, I mean lame. Kender don't have to be lame. Particularly as a PC race.
Every kender doesn't have to be as vapid as Tasslehoff Burrfoot always seemed to be. Hell, every kender doesn't have to be Tasslehoff Burrfoot, period. But I think that's the prevailing perception.
I'm continually dumbfounded whenever I encounter the paradoxical thinking process of some gamers. There are gamers that spout off about how roleplaying is not about slavishly following rules, but rather about treating published rules as guidelines rather than strictures.
AND YET, I've heard the same gamers complain about the "problems" of this or that PC race.
Folks, if you don't like something about the rules pertaining to a race, change it. It's just more rules to be used as needed, bent to your whim, etc.
So, let's apply this to kender. If you don't want them to be giggling, air-headed kleptomaniacs in your game, then they don't have to be.
I can't be the only person who has figured this out. Why do I have to explain house ruling to you guys?
So, what do you want your kender to be like? And by extension, how else does YOUR version of Krynn differ in your games from what's depicted in the published fiction?
Are your kender capable of the entire range of personalities, from happy-go-lucky to dark and brooding?
Do your kender barely have an urge to "acquire" objects, unlike the light-fingered filching freaks they are sometimes made out to be in the novels?
Make them your own, for the love of Paladine! Stop whining about their foibles and, uh, change what you don't like. Work with players who want to be kender, and (wow, concept here) ask THEM how they want their kender to behave. And let them play the little bastard that way.
Picture kender as ruthless villains, aloof assassins, whatever. Make them painfully conscious of their race's genetic urge to pilfer objects, and make them DESPISE the impulse, which they cannot control.
Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman are not going to sue you for messing with the kender stereotype, I promise.
Now get out of here, and play kender YOUR way.
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