|Hail to the King, baby.|
|Disallowing firearms in your setting will not stop the goblin gun show.|
Most unusual of all, goblin saliva acts as a weak local anesthetic, and while ineffective when applied to skin, in larger targets it causes very mild, localized numbness when applied to open wounds, or delivered via a bite, although it is enough to subdue or paralyze very small prey.
Communities are usually composed of a single 'clan' made up of several loosely related bloodlines. Competition for leadership roles are fierce, although seldom fatal--while violence is permitted, a strong taboo exists against the murder of one's extended family, and frequently is more strictly adhered to than it is among human cultures. The victor is frequently determined by martial (or occasionally magical) prowess among more primitive societies, with trade and agrarian based clans usually resorting to bribes, trickery, political machinations.
Goblins have a rich artistic tradition, consisting mostly of song and dance, simple poetry and various retellings of a single, epic poem, composed mostly of simple rhyming doublets that describes the travels (and meals) of the first goblin. They tend to leave few written or visual works, and seldom develop architectural styles, preferring to inhabit natural structures like caverns or take over abandoned settlements of other cultures.
Additionally, cannibalism is widely accepted and practiced across all variants of goblin culture. It frequently takes a dichotomous form, with the consumption of enemies and outsiders being seen as "taking their strength," while eating clan members is almost always done as part of a reverent funeral process.
Goblins are cunning, manic, inquisitive and nearly fearless by nature, and often more than a little creepy. While most adventurers would ascribe a certain amount of cowardice to them as a whole, they're more likely to withdraw to plot a more effective revenge than they are to flee from a combat they can win because they've been intimidated. They also have an amazing degree of focus when something catches their attention--sometimes to their own detriment. Savage goblins have been known to spend hours contemplating how to defeat intricate traps baited with food when their time would likely have been better spent hunting, gathering, or performing nearly any other task.
Goblins have little in the way of "downtime," spending most of their waking hours in a blur of noisy hyperactivity; spontaneous outbursts of song or dance, chasing about smaller creatures or impromptu wrestling matches are some of the more frequent (and mentionable) examples. Of course, goblins are extremely capable of settling into disturbing, unnatural silences when it's called for, and they make their way in a world filled with much larger creatures through a combination of stealth, ruthlessness, trickery, or simply overwhelming their problems through sheer numbers. Goblins are more likely to stage a mass ambush than engage in complicated assassinations.
Family is a very powerful bond for the goblin--usually keeping them close to their clan unless cast out. Those that find themselves exiled seldom live long on their own, although those that do frequently begin looking for a surrogate family almost immediately. For good or ill, once a goblin has accepted a new group as family, they're nearly impossible to get rid of.
When it comes to religion, goblins are notoriously irreverent. They may pay lip-service to some deity or another, but the rigors of finding food, taking care of family concerns and spastic behavior usually preclude spending a lot of time in devotion and service of a specific religion. On the other hand, this minimizes many of the conflicts goblins are generally willing to participate in.
Goblins may not be popular among other races, but goblins themselves don't draw too many lines; there is the clan, non-clan goblins, non-goblins, and food. Ogre, human, half-orc, elf, it makes little difference, as their casual disregard for their own safety means that a towering foe doesn't get much more regard than one their own size. After all, goblin tactics boil down to one basic concept: everyone attacks until it's dead, or they are.
Yes, this is a lot of thought to put into one specific creature. Frankly, I've always thought that if more people put this much thought into all their monsters, they'd become less of a collection of statistics and more like the actual threats and rivals they're meant to be. Still, I understand that this certainly isn't for everyone.
Yes, I love goblins, and I am not ashamed of it.