View Full Version : [3.5 Race(s)] Trueborn - Non-Outsiders from Outer Planes

2013-11-17, 03:15 AM

Description and Culture

Outsiders. Beings composed of the very fabric of the Outer Planes. Their bodies and souls a single unit, the very essence of cosmic alignments infused into every cell. They represent life in the Outer Planes, springing into being from nothing more than the supernatural, cosmic power of their homes.

But they are not the only ones who live there.

Trueborn are a broad category of beings. If asked, they are more likely to refer to themselves by the same names as their nearest Outsider kin. However, trueborn are not Outsiders, but humanoid beings born in the Outer Planes. Unlike half-planar creatures and planetouched, trueborn are not necessarily descended of Outsiders. Some are the children of plane-travelers who conceived or gave birth while in the Outer Planes. Others, strange though it may be, are the children of petitioners whose afterlives have brought them to these realms. The vast majority are simply the descendents of other trueborn. The child of two trueborn will always be a trueborn of one of its parent's types, even if conceived and born on an unaligned (or even opposed) plane.

Trueborn are humanoids, but their very physiology has been strongly altered by the cosmic forces that make up their homes. On their own planes, they are much akin to the native Outsiders that dwell there, and most consider themselves as such. However, those who travel to other realms often find that without carrying the essence of their home in their own souls, they cannot maintain the same levels of power as their Outsider cousins.

Trueborn are loosely classified into four types - Pureborn, Sinborn, Oathborn, and Whimborn, for Good, Evil, Lawful, and Chaotic planes respectively. Trueborn born to a plane of two alignments will only draw from one. Again, these terms are assigned to them by scholars; a trueborn from a Lawful Good plane, regardless of which alignment it is bound to, is more likely to refer to itself as an archon than either a Pureborn or an Oathborn. They might, maybe, call themselves a "trueborn archon" if they feel it is that important to accentuate the difference between themselves and Outsider archons.

Personality: Trueborn tend to exemplify their alignments, to some degree even moreso than Outsiders. Trueborn are in the interesting (and many would say, quite unenviable) position of having the inherent freedom of will of a mortal, while being physiologically driven to act in accordance to their nature - indeed, it is the cosmic power of the alignments that sustain them, rather than food and drink. In the great majority of cases, this is not problematic, as they also grow up in a culture where the rightness of their native alignment is simply taken as fact. For those who do make their way to the prime material plane and seek to change, however, will find that while their minds and souls pose no barrier, their own bodies will.

Physical Description: Trueborn all have humanoid forms, although they can vary quite widely in the specifics of their appearance, in fact often running the gamut not just of humanity, but of other humanoid races (a solid third of them have elf-like pointed ears, for example, and one of the most widely recognized types of Pureborn are the halfling-sized group often referred to as "cherubs").

Pureborn tend to have idealized physical forms; their coloration is vibrant, their features tend towards their personal ideals of beauty, and they often have a slight glow about them, as if more brightly lit than their surroundings. Sinborn tend to be more fearsome in their appearance, often sporting some feral feature such as horns, a tail, claws, or sharp teeth, as well as things like glowing eyes or a brimstone scent. Oathborn tend to be fairly plan-looking; their hair, eyes, and skin all tend towards the same hue, and a community of Oathborn will often be quite similar in appearance, a stronger resemblance than even some mortal families. Whimborn are...to be blunt, like anime or cartoon characters loosed into the world. Their hair, eyes, and skin can be any color at all, and some of them even appear as humanoid animals, or have animalistic features.

Relations: On their home planes, trueborn are typically surrounded by very like-minded beings. Pureborn and Oathborn, in particular, can expect open-armed welcome from most natives of their planes. Whimborn and Chaotic Outsiders tend to judge on a case by case basis. Sinborn, sadly, are fairly low rungs on the fiendish totem pole, and typically used as slaves, conscripted fodder, or simply tools and toys for fiendish whims.

Those who travel or live on the Prime Material can sometimes simply blend in with whatever communities they adopt as their own. Pureborn, however, tend to be welcomed most everywhere for their almost aggressively kindhearted natures. Oathborn tend to be readily accepted unless the codes they are bound to are at odds with a community's laws and mores. Whimborn, to state the obvious, vary. Wildly. Sinborn have it rough, with a physiological need to spread misery. Some seek out supernatural forms of nourishment and attempt to live in peace - but far more are simply happy to not be on the bottom of the power scale any more and gleefully take advantage of their "excuse" to indulge their darkest impulses.

Interestingly, unlike Outsiders, trueborn of different and even opposing types don't tend to have anything against one another. Pureborn tend to look upon Sinborn with pity, and Sinborn upon Pureborn with a measure of envy, but there is no cultural enmity there. Likewise, Oathborn and Whimborn have a hard time understanding each other and can get on one another's nerves, but that doesn't prevent friendly relations.

Alignment: The vast majority of trueborn have the same alignment as their home plane. Most of them live in a culture where that alignment is by far the most common and see no real reason to be different. Similarly, the alignments do reinforce themselves - a Pureborn, living among other highly Good-aligned beings, is likely to live an idyllic, paradisic existence that creates the desire to spread joy and improve the lives of others. Similarly, a Sinborn, existing among viciously evil beings and likely spending most of its life as a slave, warrior, or simple torture-post, is unlikely to develop much capacity for empathy and kindness.

That said, it is worth emphasizing that unlike Outsiders with an alignment subtype, there is no mental or spiritual predisposition to an alignment among trueborn. They are spiritually mortal, and possess a full measure of free will. They have no issues conceiving opposed alignments, and given sufficient reason, can change. However, among those where such change is most likely (the ones who live on the Prime Material plane), they will find their own physiology coercing them to retain their native alignment.

Religion: Trueborn tend to worship gods dedicated to the relevant alignment. The fact that it is not impossible for a trueborn to, ya know, take a trip to go meet its patron deity lends an...interesting aspect to trueborn religious practices.

Language: Automatic Languages: Common, relevant aligned language. Bonus Languages: Other aligned languages, Ignan, Auran, Aquan, Terran, Draconic, Sylvan.

Adventurers: Trueborn have an interesting quirk when it comes to adventuring. On the one hand, they are not Outsiders and thus are not bound to their home planes; given a means of planar travel, they can reach the Prime Material plane without need of being summoned. However, as they are not Outsiders, they are notably less powerful on the Prime Material plane, since the cosmic energy that powers them is not present. Nonetheless, there are trueborn who were born on the Prime Material, and others who travel there intentionally, and while many of these seek to live out their lives peacefully, no few do adventure to serve the ideals of their alignment - or to forsake them.

Racial Traits


Pureborn: +2 Cha, -2 Con. Pureborn are strong of spirit and genuinely enjoyable to be around, but their often idyllic lifestyles do not afford them any particular hardiness.

Sinborn: +2 Con, -2 Cha. Sinborn tend to lead hard lives at the bottom of the fiendish power scale. This toughens their bodies, but often cripples their self-confidence and gives them severe character flaws.

Oathborn: +2 Int, +2 Wis, -2 Dex, -2 Cha. Oathborn are patient, disciplined, and strong of mind and will, but quite inflexible physically, mentally, and socially.

Whimborn: +2 Dex, +2 Cha, -2 Int, -2 Wis. Whimborn tend to be lively, active, and full of energy, but also rather easy to sway and unlikely to think things through.

Size: Medium. Trueborn receive no bonus or penalty due to their size. Players may choose to play Small trueborn instead, which receive an additional -2 Str and +2 Dex, as well as the normal traits for Small characters.

Speed: Trueborn possess a base land speed of 30'. This is reduced to 20' for Small trueborn.

Favored Class:

Pureborn: Paladin.

Sinborn: Barbarian.

Oathborn: Wizard.

Whimborn: Bard.

Planar Child (Ex): Trueborn are native to the Outer Planes. While they have the Humanoid type, they also possess the [Extraplanar] subtype and the subtype corresponding to their primary alignment ([Good] for Pureborn, [Evil] for Sinborn, etc).

Trueborn are still "close enough" to being Outsiders for their enemies' purposes. A Trueborn can be counted as an Outsider rather than a Humanoid if doing so would be detrimental to them.

Many of the abilities of trueborn vary based on the plane they currently inhabit. These variances are organized as follows:

Strongly Aligned: A strongly aligned plane is one with a major alignment trait of the corresponding alignment. So a Pureborn treats a plane (or portion of a plane) with a Major Good Alignment Trait as Strongly Aligned.

Aligned: An aligned plane is one with a minor alignment trait of the corresponding alignment. So a Pureborn treats a plane (or portion of a plane) with a Minor Good Alignment Trait as Aligned.

Neutral: A neutral plane is one without a relevant alignment trait, such as the Prime Material plane.

Opposed: An opposed plane is one with a minor alignment trait of the opposite alignment. So a Pureborn treats a plane (or portion of a plane) with a Minor Evil Alignment Trait as Opposed.

Strongly Opposed: A strongly opposed plane is one with a major alignment trait of the opposite alignment. So a Pureborn treats a plane (or portion of a plane) with a Major Evil Alignment Trait as Strongly Opposed.

Consecrated/Desecrated: Pureborn treat a Consecrated area as one step more Aligned, a Desecrated area as one step more Opposed. Sinborn have the inverse relationship. Oathborn and Whimborn treat Consecrated and Desecrated areas as one step more Aligned when the source has the appropriate ethical alignment, or Opposed when the source has the opposite ethical alignment (if the source's ethical alignment is neutral, there is no effect). If the Consecrate or Desecrate effect is tied to an altar, or treated as such, it creates a two-step difference rather than one step.

Divine Sustenance (Ex): Trueborn are humanoids, and so require sustenance, but while they can eat and drink (and typically enjoy the taste of food) it is completely irrelevant to their biological processes. Trueborn are sustained by the cosmic power of the alignments. On an Aligned plane, they are sustained as if with a Ring of Sustenance, although they must still sleep for a normal amount of time. On a Strongly Aligned plane, they also have no need to breathe.

On an Opposed plane, they are automatically treated as starving. On a Strongly Opposed plane, they are automatically treated as thirsting. They cannot sate this hunger and thirst naturally, although magic (such as a Ring of Sustenance) can do so normally.

On a Neutral plane, it gets a bit trickier. They are subject to hunger and thirst, but food and drink will not sate them. However, they can satisfy these needs naturally by generating a small measure of aligned energy. Typically, this means by performing acts relevant to their alignments; specifically, Pureborn must spread joy, improve the lives of others, help others in need, protect innocents, or vanquish threats to others. Sinborn must cause physical or emotional pain to others against their will. Oathborn must act in accordance with an established code or behavioral pattern (players of oathborn characters should devise with a code with the DM's approval on character creation). Whimborn must indulge their present desires. Being affected by an appropriately-[Aligned] spell will also work; even a cantrip can slake thirst, while a spell of at least third level can satisfy hunger.

Actively working towards a major goal in accordance with their alignment will sustain the trueborn for the duration (or until it stops actively working towards the goal). In general, much as with normal food and drink, it can be assumed that a trueborn is performing sufficient activities to properly sustain itself during downtime unless in a special situation where doing so may not be possible.

Finally, trueborn age...differently. For the first twenty years of their lives, they grow from children to adults at much the same rate as humans. While on a Strongly Aligned plane, they may freely choose to allow their bodies to reflect the passage of time cosmetically, aging at any rate from three times to negative three times as fast (that is, they can choose to grow apparently younger over time). Their cosmetic age has no actual impact on their physical or mental attributes.

While on an Aligned plane, they do not age physically. On a Neutral plane, they age at one-fifth the normal rate. On an Opposed or Strongly Opposed plane, they age at the normal rate. For purposes of aging, treat wherever they are as one step more Aligned if they retain their native alignment, and one step less aligned if they take the opposing alignment. This means that, on a Neutral plane, a Good Pureborn would not age, a Neutral Pureborn would age at one-fifth the normal rate, and an Evil Pureborn would age normally.

Trueborn who do age have the same lifespan as humans. Trueborn never receive ability bonuses for aging, only penalties.

An Atonement spell cast on a trueborn by a cleric of the appropriate alignment can remove up to one year of physical age per two caster levels.

Planar Burdens (Su): Trueborn on their native planes are capable of flight, drawing on the cosmic power of the aligned energy to lift their bodies into the air. Unfortunately, this also means that the opposing forces weigh them down.

While on a Strongly Aligned plane, trueborn can fly at a speed of 40' with Perfect maneuverability. While on an Aligned plane, they can fly at a speed of 20' with Average maneuverability. While on an Opposed plane, they are automatically treated as moderately encumbered. While on a Strongly Opposed plane, they are automatically treated as heavily encumbered.

Planar Mark (Ex): Most trueborn have at least one physical trait that sets them apart from others. A trueborn character may choose one of the following benefits from the list below:

Aura: The trueborn can glow with an aura or halo of light. The trueborn sheds bright light out to thirty feet, and shadowy illumination thirty feet beyond that. The halo suppresses any Darkness effects with a spell level less than half the trueborn's Hit Dice, rounded up, and is itself suppressed by higher-level darkness effects. The aura also extends the radius of any auras or emanations on the trueborn by 10'. While the halo is manifested, the trueborn takes a -40 penalty to Hide checks, and invisibility provides no benefit. Activating the halo is a free action; suppressing it is a full-round action.

Glowing Eyes: The trueborn's eyes glow a chosen color, providing Darkvision out to 60'.

Natural Weapons: The trueborn possesses natural weapons; either a single natural weapon with a base damage of 1d8 (typically a bite, gore, or tail slap) or two natural weapons with a base damage of 1d4 (typically claws or slams). In the latter case, each weapon occupies one hand when used (so another weapon or shield cannot be wielded in the same hand when it is used to attack as a natural weapon). These are primary weapons if used individually, or secondary if used in conjunction with weapon attacks or other natural weapons. Damage numbers are for Medium trueborn.

Natural Armor: The trueborn possesses a thick hide, scales, or the like, granted a +1 natural armor bonus.

Wings: The trueborn possesses wings; typically, these are white feathered wings for Pureborn, bat- or dragon-like wings for Sinborn, metallic wings for Oathborn, and insect-like wings for Whimborn, although exceptions exist (particularly among Whimborn). While insufficient for flight in themselves, if the trueborn is able to fly by other means (such as its Planar Burdens trait), the wings increase its Fly speed by 50%, up to a maximum of +30'. The trueborn also takes half damage from falling.

Planar Ties (Su): The strong connection a trueborn has to the Outer Planes give it a unique advantage...and disadvantage.

Pureborn: The pureborn's ties to the holy give it a strong affinity to positive energy - and weakness to negative energy. Whenever a pureborn is subject to a positive energy effect (such as a healing spell, in the area of a Turn Undead attempt, or so on) it receives healing equal to its Hit Dice. This benefit applies once per source of positive energy (that is, per spell, or Turn attempt, or whatever), even if the source provides continual healing over time. Any time a pureborn is subject to a negative energy effect, it sustains damage equal to its Hit Dice. In the specific case of negative levels, each individual negative level counts as a separate negative energy effect, even if they are caused by the same source.

Sinborn: The sinborn's physiology encourages violence and corrupts and weakens positive forces. All positive energy healing upon the sinborn is halved. However, every time it deals damage with a melee weapon, it gains temporary hit points equal to one-fifth the damage dealt. These temporary hit points don't stack, and last for one minute.

Oathborn: The oathborn's extremely lawful nature makes it highly resistant to randomness - good or bad. Whenever the oathborn rolls a d20, or a d20 is rolled against the oathborn, the roll takes a -1 penalty per two points rolled above 10, or a +1 bonus per two points rolled below 12 - in effect, halving the roll's distance from the average result. Note that this also applies when the oathborn or a character opposing it takes 10, resulting in a +1 bonus (the oathborn's nature encourages such a stable effort). This does not apply when taking 20.

Whimborn: The whimborn's extremely chaotic nature makes it incredibly subject to the whims of chance - good or bad. Whenever the whimborn rolls a d20, or a d20 is rolled against the whimborn, the roll gets a bonus equal to the number of points rolled above a 10, or a penalty equal to the number of points rolled below an 11 - in effect, doubling the roll's distance from the average result. Note that this also applies when the whimborn or a character opposing it takes 10, resulting in a -1 penalty (the whimborn's nature discourages such a stable effort). This does not apply when taking 20.

Divine Guidance (Ex): Trueborn are exceptional judges of character and situations alike. They receive a +2 racial bonus to a certain type of skill checks, and act as if under the effects of a Phylactery of Faithfulness.

Pureborn: Pureborn are particularly empathetic, and so receive a +2 bonus to Sense Motive.

Sinborn: Sinborn are good at reading what people are likely to believe, and so receive a +2 bonus to Bluff.

Oathborn: Oathborn are skilled at noticing what others miss, and so get a +2 bonus to Spot.

Whimborn: Whimborn are adept at understanding how to adapt to their present location, receiving a +2 bonus to either Hide or Disguise, chosen on character creation.

Level Adjustment: +0. However, in games that are going to take place largely or exclusively on Aligned planes, it is suggested that a +2 Level Adjustment be assessed upon appropriate trueborn characters. In games that are going to take place largely or exclusively on Opposed planes, it is suggested that appropriate trueborn receive a bonus feat at character creation, as if they had taken a Flaw (this should count against the limit of Flaws if they are allowed in the campaign).

Trueborn Feats

Extreme Physiology

Your body has become more like that of an Outsider than a Humanoid.

Prerequisites: Trueborn, Con 13+.

Benefit: You gain an additional Planar Mark. You may take the same Planar Mark multiple times; doing so doubles the range of your Aura (including the boost to other emanations) or Darkvision, or flight speed boost from your wings, or provides an additional natural weapon or another +1 natural armor.

Special: You may take this feat multiple times, gaining a new Planar Mark each time (or improving an existing one further). However, the minimum Constitution prerequisite increases by 2 each time. No more than half of your purchases of this feat (rounded up) may be spent adding natural weapons.

Divine Intuition

You are especially skilled at reading people and situations.

Prerequisites: Trueborn, 5+ ranks in skill boosted by Divide Guidance.

Benefit: You always treat the skill affected by your Divine Guidance as class skills. In addition, a pureborn may substitute Charisma for Wisdom on Sense Motive checks. A sinborn may substitute Intelligence for Charisma on Bluff checks. An oathborn may substitute Intelligence for Wisdom on Spot checks. A whimborn may now add its +2 racial bonus to both Hide and Disguise (and may treat both as class skills).

Where the Heart Is

Like an Outsider, your spirit is so strongly attuned to your home plane that you carry some of its energy with you.

Prerequisites: Trueborn, native alignment, level 6+.

Benefit: For a number of minutes per day equal to half your Hit Dice, you can create a 10' radius emanation centered on you that acts as Consecrated (if pureborn or good-aligned oathborn or whimborn) or Desecrated (if sinborn or evil-aligned oathborn or whimborn). A morally neutral oathborn or whimborn may choose either. Activating this ability is a move action, ending it is a free action, and it can be used in increments as short as one minute.

Special: You lose the benefits of this feat while suffering from hunger or thirst.

Improved Where the Heart Is

Your spirit is more deeply attuned to the energies of your home plane.

Prerequisites: Trueborn, native alignment, Where the Heart Is, level 9+.

Benefit: The Consecrate or Desecrate effect you create with Where the Heart Is now functions as if tied to an altar.

Greater Where the Heart Is

The cosmic power of your spirit is as strong as any Outsider.

Prerequisites: Trueborn, native alignment, Where the Heart Is, Improved Where the Heart Is, level 12+.

Benefit: You are no longer limited in how much time per day you can use your Where the Heart Is feat (although you still lose its benefits while hungry or thirsty).

2013-11-17, 05:03 PM
This is excellent.

2013-11-17, 07:20 PM
Oh gods... Please tell me you are going to work on hybrids as well :smallbiggrin:

2013-11-18, 03:29 PM

And uh...hybrids of what? Like half-trueborn or something?

2013-11-18, 03:59 PM
I am curious about how they can be more closely aligned to an alignment than beings that are, physically and metaphysically, comprised of that alignment.

2013-11-18, 04:41 PM
Well, it's not to say that (for example) a pureborn is strictly "more good" than an angel. I guess it's the idea that for Outsiders, alignment is...kind of a grand ideal. It's their team, it's their nature, it's something to fight for and spread because that's who and what they are and chances are they don't really have a choice.

Trueborn still have a largely mortal view of alignment. It's much more a way of life, and although there's definitely heavy bias (up to and including biological needs, although these don't matter if on the right plane), it's still a conscious choice. Angels protect the multiverse from fiends on a daily basis. Fiends enslave, torment, and consume souls. Inevitables punish those who break the fabric of reality. Slaadi are nuts.

But a pureborn wakes up and, instead of saying, "what should I have for breakfast," they say, "who can I help today?" Sinborn are literally physiologically sated by inflicting pain and misery - not to already-rather-bad-and-let's-face-it-dead souls, but to whoever they can get their hands on and overpower. Oathborn are living in real societies with real people going about their daily lives, making choices, trying to achieve their goals, and strictly adhering to whatever code or laws they are beholden anyway. Whimborn get physically hungry if they ignore their urges and impulses.

It's not that they're "more good(/evil/lawful/chaotic)". It's that they have the same sort of "everything I do is a [My Alignment] act" that you'd expect from Outsiders, but they are more likely to be acts of mortal alignment, things that might not be as grand of scale, but are just more...noticeable and recognizable by actual people. And, of course, it's their choice to do so, which isn't always something you can say about Outsiders.

That's...fairly rambling and based on a few assumptions that may or may not be true depending on the setting, but hopefully it makes sense.