View Full Version : Hakkaros Races

2007-12-03, 01:40 PM
I'm starting a new in-school campaign soon. The people are choosing their races and classes and regions of origin in a fortnight or less. Before then I need to finish the aforementioned features.

I'd like some help balancing these races. I'm worried that many of them are overpowered, perhaps seriously. No-one has characters with them yet, so they're easy to change.

Important things to consider:
1) The campaign is using a relative alignment system - one man's holy is another's evil. Because of this, the land is split into many seperate factions, many of whom are constantly at war or allied with a country that is.
2) Because of this, there is no Common language. Humans have starting languages depending on their region of origin.
3) Since I decided that most non-human races are inappropriate to this campaign, there are no elves, dwarves, gnomes, halflings or orcs. The people of the world have legends about them (and they may exist elsewhere, or have existed) but they're not available as player races. thus, i need to make new ones. Most of the races are humanlike in form.

Race No. 1:

The erendi. Tall, thin humans with glowing yellow eyes. Tend to be bald. Follow the way of Erendar, which advocates the complete suppression of outwards emotion. Speak little and laugh less. Erendi that don't follow the way are just humans with -2 Con.

2 Int, +2 Wis, -2 Con, -2 Cha.
Medium, base land speed 30 ft, Low-Light Vision.
+2 on Spellcraft checks and all Knowledge checks. An erendi can use any Knowledge skill as though he were trained in that skill.
Disciple of Erendar (Ex): An erendi gets a +6 bonus on saves vs. any spell or effect that relies on strong emotion, such as crushing despair or rage, and cannot willingly use abilities that rely on emotions, such as a barbarian’s rage. He also gets a +4 bonus on saves vs. spells and effects that attempt to detect his thoughts or feelings.
And the biggy: An erendi’s eyes project a 10-foot globe of shadowy illumination in front of them at all times. He cannot suppress this ability except by closing his eyes. In addition, erendi can see magic. Magic items glimmer, and spell effects are visible and a glowing shape in the air. This even applies to normally invisible effects such as walls of force. A spell or item’s aura changes depending on the strength of the magic involved . An erendi cannot divine the school of magic of an aura by looking at it, nor can she see the precise caster level of the effect in question – she simply gets an aura power rating, such as Faint. Any effect that deceives or blocks detect magic will similarly affect an erendi’s Eyes of Erendar ability.
If an erendi looks at a magical aura which has a caster level five or more higher than the erendi’s character level, he must make a Fortitude save (DC equal to 5 + the aura’s CL) or be blinded for three rounds and dazed for a minute. A successful save negates the blindness and halves the duration of the dazed effect. If the save result is five or more higher than the DC, both the blindness and dazing are negated. An erendi who is blinded by an aura cannot be affected thus again unless the aura leaves his sight for more than an hour.
If an erendi looks at an aura whose level is at least 25 levels more than his own, he is permanently blinded (no save).
Automatic Languages: Sas’kar, any other two. Bonus Languages: Any.
Favoured class: Monk

Race No. 2:

The I'Chuul. Erendi who have turned away from the Way of Erendar and embraced their emotions and the power they bring. Similar in appearence to erendi, except that their eyes are pits of blackness. the blackness spreads from their eyes and down over their bodies in elaborate patterns. I'Chuul are very firendly and welcoming, always seeking new friends. They are quick to sulk or anger, however. Again, an I'Chuul who forsakes his powers is just a human with -2 Con.

+2 Int, +2 Cha, -2 Con, -2 Wis
Medium, base land speed 30 ft, Darkvision to 60 ft.
+2 on Hide checks.
Wild Mind (Su): Any being that attempts to divine an I’Chuul’s thoughts or emotions by mystical means must make a Will save (DC 10 + ½ the I’Chuul’s character level + the I’Chuul’s Cha bonus) or be stunned for 5 rounds. If he fails the save by 10 or more, he is driven insane, as the insanity spell.
Just as an erendi can see magic, so I'Chuul can see people's emotions as an aura around their heads. This gives them several bonuses. They get a +2 racial bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Gather Information and Perform checks and a +4 racial bonus on Sense Motive checks. In addition, the DC of any spell or effect the I’Chuul controls that affects the emotions is increased by 2, and they get a +2 bonus to caster level to overcome spell resistance against these effects. None of these bonuses apply versus erendi.
Automatic Languages: Sas’kar, any other one. Bonus Languages: Any.
Favoured class: Bard

Race No. 3:

The Askarti. These people used to be humans but have long since drifted away into their own distinct race. They are big and bulky, with very thick, purple-tinged skin. Magical tattoos are carved into this skin with enchanted knives, granting an askartus many of his abilities, but also make it difficult for them to use magic.
Askarti exist in a tribal society, overruled by their rare spellcasters, known as the Wise. They have a similar temperament to dwarves - slow to trust, fast to mistrust, holds gruges for a very long time - but can make stalwart friends eventually. An askarti won't tolerate insults, especially against the Wise. An insult to a Wise is an insult to all askarti listening.

+2 Str, -2 Dex.
Medium, base land speed 30 ft.
+2 natural armour bonus.
Spell resistence equal to 9 plus character level. Can't voluntarily lower this SR.
Siphon Energy (Su): Whenever the askartus is dealt energy damage he gains resistance 5 to that type of damage. Additional energy of the same type increases the resistance by 5 each time. This resistance lasts until the askartus is damaged by a different type of energy, whereupon he gains resistance 5 against that type instead. The energy types that this ability works against are: fire, cold, acid, sonic, electricity, positive and negative. Note that this means that repeated healing spells will become less and less effective on an askartus until he is damaged by another source of energy.
10% arcane and divine spell failure chance. Stacks with arcane failure chance from armour, shields, etc.
Automatic Languages: Askarti, regional human language. Bonus Languages: Arget, the Shining Tongue, Vash, Anarvan (the languages of various human nations).
Favoured class: Fighter

That'll do for now. I'll post the others in a day or two.

2007-12-05, 02:54 PM
Since no-one has replied, and the thread is slowly slipping into the murky waters of page two and onwards, I will now post the last two new races of the campaign. In addition to these, hobgoblins will also be present.

Race 4
The Wise. Technically an askarti subrace, these are the spellcasters of askarti society. Female children who are to become wise are chosen early in life. There are no male wise. Physically, Wise are like normal askarti, but their skin has a reddish shade instead of purple and their tattoos, instead of shimmering all colours like normal askarti's do, pulse a deep, powerful blue.

+2 Int, +2 Wis, -2 Str. Wise are smart, insightful, wise and graceful, However, they are not nearly as physically strong as other Askarti, and tend to be aloof and unfriendly. These adjustments replace normal Askarti ability adjustments.
Medium: As Medium creatures, Askarti have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
Askarti base land speed is 30 feet.
+1 natural armour bonus. Askarti have very thick skin.
Spell resistance equal to 9 + character level. Can be voluntarily lowered and raised again as a swift action.
Mask of the Wise (Su): Instead of the normal forehead tattoo which grants the siphon energy ability, Wise gain an elaborate face-spanning head tattoo when they come of age. This tattoo obscures the Wise’s facial features slightly, indicating her leaving her old identity behind to become a Wise. It also shines with a deep blue light. This tattoo grants a Wise the ability to absorb spell energy directed against them. Whenever she succeeds on an initial save against a spell, she may make another one. If she succeeds on this save, the spell’s effect on her is completely negated (even if the save was for a partial effect or half damage) and she absorbs its energy as spell levels, causing her mask to shine with purple light (shadowy illumination out to a 5-foot radius). A Wise can store up to ten spell levels at a time in her Mask. The stored levels are used to cast the Wise’s own spells (NB: Askarti tattoos can be upgraded and new ones can be carved into their skin if they pay for or earn them, in a manner similar to warforged components. This includes the Mask of the Wise.). By expending any number of spell levels, the Wise regains a spell slot of that level (if a spontaneous caster) or an extra use of a spell of that level that she prepared that morning (if not).
Automatic Languages: Askarti, regional language. Bonus Languages: Arget, the Shining Tongue, Vash, Anarvan, Checarn (Equivalent of Draconic - ancient arcane language).
Favoured Class: Cleric or wizard. Choose the Wise’s favoured class upon character creation. Once made, the choice can never be altered.
Level Adjustment: +1

Race 5
The necrovax. Intelligent undead beings, who are effectively living souls purposefully bound to a dead body. Think of it like a lesser form of lichdom. In Rakarr, a large proportion of the population are intelligent undead, mostly liches, mummies and necrovax, and it is seen as perfectly normal. A necrovax seems to be a human with pale,bloodless skin. Over time, the pigment in his hair and eyes begins to leech away, leaving whit or patchy grey hair and very pale eyes. Also, if they're not careful, they have a tendency to rot.

-2 Dex, -2 Cha. A necrovax’s undead body is unwieldy, and their undead appearance and mindset makes it hard for them to interact with others.
Undead (necrovax): Necrovax are undead with the necrovax subtype. They are undead, and as such are not affected by spells like charm person or dominate person, but they are closer to life than most of their kind. As such, they lack many of the benefits and drawbacks of being undead, as detailed below:

Features: A necrovax has the following features.

A necrovax derives its base attack bonus progression, saving throws and skill points from the class it selects.
Any Hit Die gained through class levels become d12s instead.

Traits: A necrovax has the following traits.

A necrovax has no Constitution score. This affects him in various ways:
He is immune to any effect that requires a fortitude save, unless that effect also affects objects or is harmless.
He is immune to ability damage, ability drain, and energy drain.
He automatically fails Constitution checks.
He does not tire, and is thus immune to fatigue and exhaustion and can run indefinitely.
Unlike other undead, a necrovax does not have darkvision, is not immune to mind-affecting effects or nonlethal damage, is subject to extra damage from critical hits, sneak attacks and death from massive damage, and can be returned to its undead state via a raise dead or resurrection spell (but not a reincarnation spell).
Immunity to poison, sleep effects, paralysis, stunning, disease, and death effects.
Negative energy heals necrovax, but they are damaged by positive energy.
A necrovax is disabled at 0 hit points, like a living creature, and can only take a single move action or standard action. However, strenuous activity does not cause a necrovax to lose further hit points. At -1 to -9 hit points, a necrovax is unconscious, and his spirit begins to escape from his body, causing him to lose hit points as a living being would.
A necrovax derives its weapon and armour proficiencies from the class it selects.
Necrovax do not eat, drink, or breathe, but they do need to sleep. A necrovax can still gain the benefit from the effects of consumable spells and magic items such as heroes’ feast and potions.
Loose Soul: A necrovax’s soul is bound to its body through magic, not nature. It gains a +4 bonus on saves vs. effects that affect the soul, such as magic jar. However, if they fail their save and their soul leaves their body, they die. The same applies if the necrovax’s soul leaves its body voluntarily, such as with an astral projection spell.
If revived after being reduced to fewer than 0 hit points, a necrovax takes a penalty on attack rolls, saves and checks equal to half the amount of hit points below zero it reached, rounded down, for a number of days equal to the amount of hit points below zero it reached, caused by damage to its soul. A special version of the binding spell can seal a necrovax’s spell within its body, negating any soul damage and preventing its soul from leaving its body for 1 year.

Medium: As Medium undead, necrovax have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
Necrovax base land speed is 30 feet.
Decomposition: A necrovax’s body is dead, and knows it. If left uncared for, it will begin to rot, eventually dissolving into a pile of necromantic sludge. Thus, a necrovax has to be careful with his body.

A necrovax’s state of decomposition is expressed in “rot points”. These point accumulate slowly at first, then more rapidly, until the necrovax becomes an Urassen. The accumulation of points can be slowed with certain magicks, but can be accelerated if the necrovax uses his Touch of the Veil ability too frivolously.
Certain spells can affect the rate at which rot points are acquired:
-A gentle repose spell prevents rot points accumulating for its duration.
-A horrid wilting spell affects necrovax, but instead of damage, they gain 1 rot point per die of damage (Fort negates).
In addition, a necrovax can stave off decomposition in an hour-long ritual in which the necrovax sacrifices any number of spell slots. The lost spell slots persist for a number of days equal to their total number of spell levels, during which time no rot points are gained.
Rot points are very difficult to remove once gained. The staple spell for this purpose is unrot(new spell), but this is mid-level, belying its use for low-level characters. A more basic spell, restore flesh(another new spell), is available, but this is expensive to cast. Wish and miracle can remove all rot points from a single necrovax. Limited wish can remove 10 rot points.

Touch of the Veil (Su): A necrovax can channel negative energy through his touch as a standard action which provokes an attack of opportunity if not used on himself. This ability deals 1d8 damage per four character levels and can be used a number of times per day equal to the necrovax’s Int modifier. Necrovax and other undead are healed by this ability. A necrovax can use his touch of the veil on himself. Using this ability uses up some of the necrovax’s energy – the necrovax gains 1 rot point for each subsequent use beyond the first each day.
Automatic Languages: Rakarran. Bonus Languages: Blackstone, the Shining Tongue, Arget, Anarvan, Checarn.
Favoured Class: Wizard. A multiclass necrovax’s wizard class does not count when determining whether he takes an experience point penalty for multiclassing. Those with arcane abilities are often attracted by the path of a necrovax, especially if they lack the power to achieve lichdom. Rakarr, the birthplace of the necrovaxic rituals and the home of the majority of necrovax, has a strong arcane tradition.

2007-12-05, 03:20 PM
If you don't use any other races than your own ones,. balancing get a lot easier. I particularly like the different races, even though the whole setting seems top be far away from the more gritty and mostly historical correct settings I normally prefer; I really would like to see more about the world and it's background.

All your races seem to be a bit stronger than regular LA 0 races; if you don't use any of those (like you mentioned) that's not a problem. The question is, how are these races in balance to each other.And there I think the non-wise askarti are comparatively weak. I wold recommend to give them an additional, small bonus (like +2 against fear effects or something similar).

And if yoiu include normal humans, you should lift the LA of all these races by +1 or give them humans some additiuonal abilites.

2007-12-05, 04:04 PM
You're right, the setting is not historical. The main unusual thing about it is that it has a relative alignment system - the people are divided along patriotic and religious lines, rather than good/evil and law/chaos. I'll probably put up info about the setting itself next week, when I get back from Cologne. Actually, I should be getting ready now...

The problem is, I do want the races to be balanced. Humans are included, and in fact are the most common race by far. Thus, the others need to be balanced out. I don't know how to do this well without losing the race's core idea.

2007-12-05, 04:29 PM
You're right, the setting is not historical. The main unusual thing about it is that it has a relative alignment system - the people are divided along patriotic and religious lines, rather than good/evil and law/chaos. I'll probably put up info about the setting itself next week, when I get back from Cologne. Actually, I should be getting ready now...

Actually, I think all good games could use more ambivalence. That is a good (perhaps even necessary) feature of a campaign for more mature minds.
Have fun in Cologne. It's mostly a beautiful place.

The problem is, I do want the races to be balanced. Humans are included, and in fact are the most common race by far. Thus, the others need to be balanced out. I don't know how to do this well without losing the race's core idea.

The races asre hard to balance, i think, because they have quite unique powers to them. I would say: If you leave humans as they are, make all races but the Wise LA +1, and if you give humans and the askarti a power boost, you should be okay, I think.

And on a side note: effects like "you are permanently blind" are not realy fun; at least give them a save, or make the effect healable. Things like that can easily ruin a character, and that's just not good for the game.

2007-12-09, 06:19 AM
Sorry, I meant blind until healed, as opposed to blind for a little while. How should I say that?