Ruins of Old
Even those gnolls who have turned from the evil ways of their prince Cerberus are less intelligent and less charismatic than the average member of other humanoid races. Gnolls don’t see this deficiency as a weakness, however, placing more value on physical abilities and natural cunning than on subtle thought or persuasive abilities. Gnolls also remain very suspicious of other races, especially kobolds, lizardfolk and especially vanara with whom they have had generations of conflict and strife.
Gnolls are suspicious of others’ motives until they give them reasons to be trusted. This suspicion rests on the firm foundation of gnoll’s long conflicts with other races, and such mistrust and conflict cannot be erased easily or quickly. Kobolds, lizardfolk, and vanara are likely to use the past behavior of gnolls as a reason to betray them. After someone earns a gnoll’s trust, however, he or she becomes like a brother or sister to the gnoll, and the few powerful emotional bonds that a gnoll forms with others shape his life and his outlook. Once a gnoll names someone a packbrother, he forever has the gnoll’s trust.
Gnolls are the travelers, hunters, and scavengers of the ruins of old; adventuring gnolls travel almost constantly. To a gnoll, sitting in one place isn’t cowardly or illogical; it’s simply unpleasant. Some gnolls are drawn simply by the thrill and variety of the hunt, while others are motivated only by curiosity. As a pack of gnolls grows, the bond of the pack serves as a major impetus for travel—the most adventurous gnolls pull the rest of the pack along on their hunts. Packs of evil gnolls are driven to travel by the will of Cerberus, and packs of neutral gnolls travel to escape the influence of other gnoll packs and the wariness of other races.
Gnoll characters probably urge their adventuring companions to contemplate long, overland journeys. Most gnolls are therefore able to carry everything they own. If they can’t carry something with them personally, they make sure to have a trusted mount or beast of burden to carry it for them. In general, a few high-quality possessions are much more valuable to gnolls than numerous goods. A gnoll would rather stay outdoors than at an indoor shelter. Gnolls focus on adventuring opportunities that will take them on long journeys rather than quests in their immediate area.
Gnolls have little in the way of power groups. Among tribes of evil gnolls, the strongest warriors rule by brute force. Occasionally, exceptionally powerful or persuasive warriors of Cerberus will lead a tribe, usually by ensuring that the strongest warriors are devoted to the dark worship of the mutated hound. Even those rare gnoll tribes that place a greater value on personal honor are led by the most physically powerful warrior. Because of this, when a gnoll adventures with members of other races, he will sometimes expect to lead if he is the strongest, regardless of the difﬁculties he faces when traveling within the members of other races and regardless of other group members’ more developed social skills.