Friday, 25th July, 2008, 02:48 AM #1
Minor Trickster (Lvl 4)
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- Jun 2008
ø Ignore Nivenus
Ethnic Lineages (i.e., 4e subraces)
Though we really can't tell until the campaign settings come out I think it's a fair guess to say, from what we've seen, there won't be subraces as we know them in 4E. In some ways, this is a good thing. Subraces were often so varied and different that they were for all practical purposes a different race (hence why Wizards took the simple method and made elves three different races).
However, while this takes a large amount of complexity out of the system (which is good) it also removes some of the diversity. So, in hoping to maintain some measure of simplicity while adding some more color to 4E's races I've gone ahead and made several templates I call Ethnic Lineages. I've gathered a few of them here as samples (I do have more though).
Note that these are aimed primarily at the Forgotten Realms setting, though with a little tweaking they could probably used for other settings as well. Any feedback would be appreciated as they are basically in the alpha stage of development.
Ethnic lineages take what is established about a race and alter it slightly. These templates are designed to add variety to a race, while maintaining balance through swapping racial features out for different ones. In addition, the ethnic templates allow characters access to new feats.
Core Races: Angel scion [aasimar], shield [dwarf], moon elf [eladrin], wood [elf], lightfoot [halfling], Chondathan [human], baatling [tiefling]
Calishites are descendants of the slaves of the genies who ruled Calimshan and are, unlike most humans, not native to Toril. Calishites usually have dusky brown skin, hair, and eyes and are on average a little shorter and of slighter build than the average human. Many Calishites have traces of fire genie blood in their veins as a remnant of their captivity.
Bloodline of Fire: You exchange the core human’s defense bonuses for the Bloodline of Fire racial feature. You gain a +1 racial bonus to your Reflex defense and to any powers with the fire keyword as well as resist 5 fire.
Gold dwarves were not much unlike how they are in modern times. Unlike shield dwarves gold dwarves are an aloof and almost elitist race. They do not just have a proud martial tradition but also possess a history of magic-using. Primarily gold dwarfs reside in the East Rift, unlike their northern brethren.
Skill Bonuses: You exchange the core dwarf’s skill bonuses of +2 Dungeoneering and +2 Endurance for +2 Arcana and +2 History.
Illuskan is the name usually given to a human who comes from the Sword Coast North. They are also known as Northlanders. Illuskans make up the bulk of the population in the northwest of Faerûn and are a tall, fair skinned people with blue or steel gray eyes though father north blonde hair and in the south raven black hair grow more common.
Survivor of the North: You exchange the core human defense bonuses for the Survivor of the North feature. You gain a +1 racial bonus to Fortitude and +2 Nature.
While both the lightfoots and ghostwise are at least partially nomadic and have no strong example of civilization the stronghearts are otherwise. Unlike their disorganized kin the stronghearts are orderly and industrious in an almost dwarf-like fashion and are often mistaken as young, beardless dwarves by other races.
Skill Bonuses: You exchange the core halfling’s skill bonuses of +2 Acrobatics, +2 Thievery for +2 Athletics and +2 Perception.
Sun elves are much less common than their moon elf kin, in large part due to the fact that so many of them dwell in distant Evermeet. With bronze skin and blond, copper, or black hair they are a striking sight. Though moon elves (otherwise known as eladrin) are well-known for their magical talents sun elves put an even greater emphasis on them. Indeed sun elves make some of the best wizards in all of Toril.
Group Lore: You exchange the core eladrin’s Eladrin Weapon Proficiency for Group Lore. You grant non-eladrin allies within 5 squares of you a +1 racial bonus to either Arcana, History, or Religion (your choice).
Unlike the more common baatlings tanar’rites are descended from the tanar’ri, or demons, of the Realms. Because of this origin tanar’rites differ slightly from their distant baatezu brethren. However, in spite of a vastly different heritage the tanar’rites and baatlings are, in many ways, fundamentally similar.
Sphere of Shadow: You exchange the core tiefling’s infernal wrath encounter power for the sphere of shadow daily power.
Sphere of Shadow - Tanar’rite Racial Power
You cast a sphere of shadow on the battlefield, obscuring the sight of your foes.
Standard Action - Area burst 4 within 10
Effect: This power creates a sphere of shadow that remains in place until the end of your next turn. The sphere blocks line of sight for all creatures except you. Any creature except you entirely within the sphere is blinded.
Also known as “green elves” wild elves are not as common as their wood elf kin in the civilized parts of Toril but in the wilds that stretch across the globe they are a frequent site. With darker skin and a heavier build than their light cousins they are easily distinguishable on sight. Wild elves are mostly found in the southern and eastern regions of Faerûn.
Wild Hunter: You exchange the core elf’s Group Awareness feature for Wild Hunter. You gain a +2 racial bonus to attack rolls against foes with the nature keyword in their description.
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