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Aniikinis
2017-08-08, 09:48 AM
I previously posted this on DanDWiki, but I figured I'd port it over here.

Necrani (Necrani/Necran/Necrotian)

Hailing from a far off realm with close ties to the Negative Energy Plane, the necrani are a race of humanoid beings that share similarities with humans but are warped and much different than the race that they resemble. Their racial homeland is a place of near-constant darkness with much of the fauna and flora being undead, having the common traits of such, or using the corpses of other creatures to aid in their survival. As befitting this negatively-charged land, the necrani have many adaptations and differentiations from their Positively-charged likenesses. Through the centuries they have developed an innate sense for the undead, found ways to force those that refuse to die to take that last bite towards death, become almost immune to the effects of some undead's energy-draining abilities, and nurtured a racial ability to command and control the undead creatures that they have survived alongside of. This has come at a price, however. They are very, very sensitive to light and animals powered by positive energy instinctively hate them for their "unnatural" being. They have learned to survive in other realms and how to fend off attacks from the wild beasts that inhabit these areas as well.

Necrani have been scattered across the multiverse by a portal that was opened by the lich lord Zold to keep them safe from the unending attacks from the children of Doresain on their homeworld. Once roughly a third of the necrani had left their home, doresain manifested and led his ghouls into a major attack on the fortress, causing the portal to shut down from the magical interference and physical trauma to the structure. Now the necrani are left scattered, racial memories of their home and the legends they pass down keeping the hope alive that there are still necrani on necron and that one day Zold will reach across the astral realms to tell the Chosen how to construct portals to return or to save more.

Physical Description
At first glance, the necrani appear to have very little difference between males and females. Both are close to 5' 2" in height with lithe builds, small fatty deposits on the chest, primary sexual characteristics that are so visually similar they could put spotted hyenas to shame, fairly feminine faces with very soft features, very pale, greyish-purple skin, hair that seems to have colours that are unnatural to their human likenesses (Blues, reds, yellows, greens, purples, and other such colours are very common among the necrani), and eyes with black sclera and white irises (though neon pink, neon green, and neon yellow are not unheard of, darker shades and black are very rare).

Necrani have a strange ability, they can cause their eyes to glow in one of 3 colours, with the first chosen at creation as the colour of the necran's soul and the other two accessible through feats. The colour of the Necran's glow colours the sclera and pupil and causes the iris to turn black instead of the natural colour of the iris and is an instinctual part of their Undead Sense. Whenever a necran senses undead their eyes immediately begin to glow with the chosen colour. They can turn this off or on with a free action at any time.

Necran females tend to have wider hips and darker coloured hair than the males as well as being very slightly taller with more obvious claws and pointed ears.
Necran males, on the other hand, have smaller hips and lighter coloured hair with "finned" ears and barely perceptible claws, however they also have slightly larger eyes and are more nimble with their hands.

Additionally, necrani are known among those with a taste for mortal and/or humanoid flesh(such as ghouls) for being extremely sweet tasting(but not sickeningly so), succulent, and tender but not very filling, strangely dry, and giving an extremely bad case of indigestion due to being loaded with negative energy and a good amount of what could be considered traditional waste due to their traditional diet. For those who are undead or who are immune to such downsides, this only makes them even more of a desirable meal as the only downsides is having to eat more and that the meat tends to dry the orifice out a little.

Diet
Necrani hail from a land of extreme necrotic energies and undeath with very little that would be traditionally edible. To compensate for this, their body has adapted to survive on just about anything organic. They are extreme omnivores. Able to digest hardy, dense, and fibrous plant matter, just about any kind of meat, bones, detritus-laden carrion, most forms of fungi, an even some types of rocks. This ability allows them to eke out an existence just about anywhere. Their bodies have also adapted to require much less food than an average creature their size.

Different necrani cultures may have different takes on their ability to eat just about anything, although some choose to restrict their diet for various reasons. A nomadic necrotian culture might subsist entirely on plant matter and whatever carrion they come across. A necrotian culture that formed around a decay well might restrict their diet to carrion and bones. And one in a mountainous region might have a mostly mineral and rock-based diet with other forms of food used for celebrations or holy days.

Societies
Necrotian cultures have a heavy respect for the state of undeath, seeing it as just another route through both life and death, but are very uncomfortable towards or sometimes even completely ignorant of the state of actual death, for such a thing rarely happened in their homeland. Though there is one state of undeath they revile, that of the ghoul, since they have plagued the necrani for thousands of years due to their enjoyment of the taste of necrani flesh. Despite their supposedly morose and terrifying background, the necrani are surprisingly cheery in contrast to their darkened and "unholy" reputation.

Relations

Most races view the Necrani with suspicion due to their negatively-charged nature.

Alignment and Religion

Typically Necrani do not worship gods, viewing undeath as the best and most natural afterlife possible for them, but that isn't to say that they don't have gods. Necrani have a small-ish number of gods when compared to others such as the dwarven or elven races, and count a few demigods within their ranks. Some of the more notable are:

Necron - The name of their homeworld's world spirit has been lost to time and they have taken to using their world's name for both.
Zold - A powerful lich that took a very active role in the protection of their race and was subsequently lifted to demigod status by the goddess Meli.
Meli - The protector and guardian of the necrani race from the ravenous horrors.
Juumli - The bringer of justice when Meli can't bring herself to do so, his arrows seek out the guilty parties with laser focus.
Pionra - The goddess of war, anarchy, and strife is a dastardly predator who preys on all that harbour negative emotions.
Vekilrol - Once the god of undead, he turned sour and began demanding harsher and crueler sentences and rites until none could keep up with his demands, whereupon he teamed with Doresain and brought the ghouls straight to the necrani's doors.
Humli - Thought to have been the originator of the Necrani race, the Bringer of Hope is often looked too in dark times to help rekindle the will to live.

Necrani that worship gods other than the ones above typically worship gods of undeath, healing, protection, and community.

Similarly, Necrani tend towards good but people of all alignments are found among them.

Necrani Racial Traits


+2 Dexterity, -4 Constitution, and +2 Charisma: Necrani are nimble and very likable, but are frail and easily harmed
Humanoid(Necrani)
Medium
Normal base land speed: 30 feet.
Resist Level Drain: Necrani take no penalty from energy-draining effects, though a necran can still be killed if it accrues more negative levels than it has Hit Dice. After 24 hours, any negative levels a necran has accrued are removed without the need for any additional saving throws.
Unnatural: Necrani unnerve normal animals, and train to defend themselves against the inevitable attacks from such creatures. Necrani take a -4 penalty on all Charisma-based skill checks to affect creatures of the animal type, and receive a +4 dodge bonus to AC against animals. An animal's starting attitude toward a necran is one step worse than normal.
Skill Bonus: Necrani have a +2 racial bonus on Disguise checks to pass for a human.
Necrani Diet: Necrani have a +4 racial bonus to ingested diseases and poisons and checks to survive in the wilderness and forage for food are made with a +8 racial bonus. Only requires as much food as a small humanoid.
Constant Spell-Like Divination: Necrani are under a constant non-magical detect undead effect (the equivalent caster level is equal to the necran's character level).
Natural Weapons: Necrani have two claw attacks that deal 1d4 damage. These are primary natural attacks.
Weapon Familiarity: Necrani are proficient with morningstars, scorpion whips, and khopesh.
Carrion Sense: Necrani have a natural ability to sniff out carrion. This functions like the scent ability, but only for corpses and badly wounded creatures (creatures with 25% or fewer hit points).
Minesight: Necrani have darkvision 90 feet; however, they are automatically dazzled in bright light and take a -2 penalty on saving throws against effects with the light descriptor.
Negative Energy Affinity: A necran is alive, but is healed by negative energy and harmed by positive energy, as if she were an undead creature.
Light Blindness: Abrupt exposure to bright light blinds a necran for 1 round; on subsequent rounds, she is dazzled as long as she remains in the affected area.
Spell-Like Ability: At-Will>óBleed, Command Undead (Each use of command undead only affects one creature per day). Caster level is the necran's class level. The save DC is charisma-based.
Automatic Languages: Necrani begin play speaking Abyssal, Aklo, and Common. Necrani with high Intelligence scores can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic).


Vital Statistics

Random Ages


Adulthood
Simple
Moderate
Complex


14
+1d6
+2d6
+2d8





Necrani Aging Effects


Middle Age
Old
Venerable
Maximum Age


40 Years
80 Years
120 Years
+4d10 Years



Necrani Random Height and Weight


Gender
Base Height
Height Modifier
Base Weight
Weight Modifier


Male
4'9"
+1d6 Inches
112 lb.
+1d8 x 2 lb.


Female
5'0"
+1d8 inches
114 lb.
+1d8 x 2 lb.



Racial Feats:

Necro-Sage's Light [Racial]
Description: You have enhanced your affinity for the undead, even to the point of them following your lead in hordes and following your commands wordlessly as your eyes can now shine a sickly green colour.
Prerequisite: Necrani, 5 HD
Benefit: You may affect a number of undead equal to your Cha modifier as long as they are within 5 feet/HD of one another and you may give your commands telepathically. The Spell-like Ability functions over a mile with them under your control and they must make a saving throw equal to 10 + the Caster Level of the Spell-like Ability to break out of it the next day.
Normal: You must speak the commands, the Command Undead Spell-like Ability only effects one creature, and lasts only one day.
Special: You may have a number of undead under your control equal to (20+Cha)/HD

Blessing of Necron [Racial]
Description: You have done something to please the homeland of your race, but figuring out what is impossible due to the fickle nature of the unliving world, your eyes can now shine a deep purple tinged with green and black.
Prerequisite: Necrani, 10 HD, Spell Focus (Necromancy), Diehard, Undead Mastery, Selective Channel, Must have defeated a creature with the Outsider, Undead, or Magical Beast type and a CR of at least 2 more than the level you would take this feat at while using no undead and with at most three people to assist you (you must deal the finishing blow).
Benefit: You gain +2 to all diplomacy rolls regarding other necran, the DCs of all your Spell-like abilities and all spells that deal with negative energy are increased by 2. Once per day if you were to die, you suddenly return to life as an undead at one-fourth of your full HP, but you lose a level and suffer 2d4 dexterity and charisma damage; you count as an undead in addition to any other types and subtypes you may have. After 24 hours have passed this ability refreshes and you no longer count as an undead. If you were to die while you were under effects of this ability you die for real.



Made mostly as a spur of the moment idea and the want to build a race that, while visually similar to humans, had different forms of sexual dimorphism and could be considered an almost-isomorphic species while still very clearly being dimorphic.

Lalliman
2017-08-08, 12:16 PM
Not to be a downer, but the sexual dimorphism doesn't strike me as odd at all. There's plenty of species in and outside of D&D that don't have "females have tits" as the main gender distinction. If anything, the Necrani not having any obvious distinctions is a lot less weird than, say, Dragonborn having breasts. Based on your title I was expecting the opposite, namely men and women who look like totally different species.

Anyways, I like their racial ties with the undead, I don't think I've seen something like that before. The explanation around the Command Undead spell-like ability isn't very clear though. Someone who doesn't bother reading the Necro-Sage's Light feat wouldn't notice the 'one creature' and 'one day' restrictions. It's easy to miss those and assume that it works like the normal Command Undead spell, which has no limit on controlled creatures and has a duration of 1 day per caster level.

Also, Blessing of Necron is crazy powerful? +10 to DCs of negative energy spells alone is worth like five feats, and I don't even know how to assess a free resurrection every day. Did you intend for this to have some additional, unlisted prerequisite? After all, it says "You have done something to please the homeland of your race".

King of Nowhere
2017-08-08, 01:50 PM
I like it; I especially like how you do not use the association with undeath in a cliche way by making them some sort of ghouls. They have some good flavour.

However, you really should tone down the blessing of necron feat. +10 to DC is really huge. Make it a +2 and remove the free resurrection effect; at this point it will be +5 diplomacy with other necron and +2 to DC, which makes for a reasonable feat. If you really want to add a resurrection-like effect, you could make it cost a level; that way, you save the 5000 gp on the diamond, but you still have to pay the heaviest price for resurrection (unless your companion use true resurrection on you before the day was over)

rferries
2017-08-08, 01:51 PM
Not to be a downer, but the sexual dimorphism doesn't strike me as odd at all. There's plenty of species in and outside of D&D that don't have "females have tits" as the main gender distinction. If anything, the Necrani not having any obvious distinctions is a lot less weird than, say, Dragonborn having breasts. Based on your title I was expecting the opposite, namely men and women who look like totally different species.

Anyways, I like their racial ties with the undead, I don't think I've seen something like that before. The explanation around the Command Undead spell-like ability isn't very clear though. Someone who doesn't bother reading the Necro-Sage's Light feat wouldn't notice the 'one creature' and 'one day' restrictions. It's easy to miss those and assume that it works like the normal Command Undead spell, which has no limit on controlled creatures and has a duration of 1 day per caster level.

Also, Blessing of Necron is crazy powerful? +10 to DCs of negative energy spells alone is worth like five feats, and I don't even know how to assess a free resurrection every day. Did you intend for this to have some additional, unlisted prerequisite? After all, it says "You have done something to please the homeland of your race".

I agree with all these points, ESPECIALLY the Blessing of Necron. Your harm spells will be unstoppable, plus a free contingent resurrection (epic spell) each day?! Plus command undead is quite a powerful SLA (depending on how many undead the DM throws at you), so do be sure to incorporate the restrictions on control limits etc. into the main necrani writeup.

Otherwise you've done a very good job balancing the race and fleshing out the flavour! Good work.

Aniikinis
2017-08-09, 08:50 AM
I will admit, I was writing Blessing of Necron on very little sleep. Yes, there was supposed to be an additional prerequisite that I forgot to type down and I'll adjust the power of the feat respectively.


Blessing of Necron [Racial]
Description: You have done something to please the homeland of your race, but figuring out what is impossible due to the fickle nature of the unliving world, your eyes can now shine a deep purple tinged with green and black.
Prerequisite: Necrani, 10 HD, Must have defeated a creature with the Outsider, Undead, or Magical Beast type and a CR of at least 5 more than the level you would take this feat at while using no undead and with at most three people to assist you (you must deal the finishing blow).
Benefit: You gain +2 to all diplomacy rolls regarding other necran, the DCs of all your Spell-like abilities and all spells that deal with negative energy are increased by 2. Once per day if you were to die, you suddenly return to life as an undead at one-fourth of your full HP, but you lose a level and suffer 2d4 dexterity and charisma damage; you count as an undead in addition to any other types and subtypes you may have. After 24 hours have passed this ability refreshes and you no longer count as an undead. If you were to die while you were under effects of this ability you die for real.


Changes bolded.

rferries
2017-08-09, 11:45 AM
I will admit, I was writing Blessing of Necron on very little sleep. Yes, there was supposed to be an additional prerequisite that I forgot to type down and I'll adjust the power of the feat respectively.



Changes bolded.

Right that's better but it's still pretty powerful (conversely, the prerequisites are a little complex). Spell Focus and Diehard are definitely underpowered feats but Blessing is vastly better than both of them. I'm not sure how to balance Blessing, other than breaking it up into a feat chain (with the ressurection abiliy as a capstone). Alternatively, make Spell Focus (necromancy) and Diehard prerequisites for it (so that the PC has to take the hit of bad feats if they wan't the goodness of Blessing).

Then again, perhaps having the 10th-level prerequisite makes it less overpowered... let's see if anyone else chimes in.

n.b. I myself tend to post ridiculously overpowered racial feats so don't take my points too seriously. Whatever works in your games is fine!

Aniikinis
2017-08-10, 09:14 AM
Alright I added a few more feats to the prerequisites of Blessing. Any thoughts now?

rferries
2017-08-10, 02:16 PM
Alright I added a few more feats to the prerequisites of Blessing. Any thoughts now?

Ha there are some prestige classes that are easier to enter than that feat! :D However it's sufficiently stringent that I'd use it in my games.

Aniikinis
2017-08-12, 08:29 AM
Glad to hear everything seems sorted out, unless someone can find something else I need to tweak.