Similarly, if you open up the Character Builder and try to choose a race, it is basically ridiculous. Almost all of these races are absurdly out of place. It is easier to just list approved races.
Races that certainly make sense on Athas:
- Thri-kreen: These insectoids are plentiful and have an interesting culture based on small bonded groups.
- Dragonborn: These are the hideous dragon spawn (Dray). They are uncommon, but not unheard of on Athas.
- Elf: Remember, elves aren’t forest people on Athas – they are lazy nomadic people with a reputation for treachery. Even “good” elves get a really bad rep on Athas.
- Goliath (half-giant): Tons of these monsters running around. Often mercenaries/guards.
- Halflings: Feral tribal people. Not afraid of a little cannibalism.
- Kenku: Bird men that are fairly common. I’ll allow it.
- Mul: Dwarf/human hybrids, typically raised to be slaves. Common race.
Races that would be very uncommon, but allowable/conceivable:
- Genasi: In the absence of gods, elemental powers are pretty much all that is left. These guys would be targets of dragon-kings and templars alike, but probably would be just fine outside of the major city-states.
- Eladrin: This is pretty sketchy, but I guess I can buy the argument that these Fey-kin are basically an extremely rare group of folks that just haven’t committed suicide yet based on how much it sucks to be on Athas. Again, don’t expect to be popular with dragon-kings or templars.
- Githyanki/Githzerai: So, there is virtually no planar travel, so these guys are just stuck on Athas, descended from their plane hopping brethren. Things have gone downhill for them a lot. Don’t expect the level of magic and tech from their “culture” that you might expect otherwise. Gith in general are pretty feral.
- Revenant: I’m banning Vampires, but I guess you could be a revenant. Don’t love it, but I could imagine such a thing. You need one heck of a story as to why you haven’t been destroyed by… basically everyone who hates the undead?
Pretty much EVERYTHING ELSE on that list is ridiculous, but let me call out some things that extra special banned due to how insane it would be:
- Orcs, bugbears, goblins, hobgoblins: As part of the plot of Athas, these races have been destroyed by genocide long ago. They are all dead and have been for thousands of years.
- Pixies: There are absolutely no damn pixies on Athas. None.
If you have other race ideas that seem like they fit, ask.