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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    I'm going to be posting stuff about a few races I've made for my campaigns. Please rate for balance and interesting-ness (not a word, I know). They're all going to be in response to this thread, once reply per race.
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Phaerim

    This first one is a favorite of mine. The things I'm unsure about are the level adjustment. Currently it's LA +3.

    I made this race by adding the Half-Drow template from Advanced Bestiary to a Skulk, refluffing it, and then removing some of the things to better fit the fluff. It lost its racial bonus on will saves.

    History
    The Phaerim were originally Drow, once upon a time. Their name is from their forebearers, the House Phaerim. House Phaerim was one of the most powerful Drow cities, until it was deemed by higher houses a threat to their rule, and was to be wiped out. The Matron Mother of Phaerim sought to plea with Lolth to intervene, summoning an avatar of her to help her in her plight. Lolth agreed to save house Phaerim, but at a price. She twisted the Phaerim into creatures alike enough to drow to be considered by an outsider one, but to a Drow it is obvious that they aren't of the same race.

    Appearance
    The Phaerim appear similar to drow, perhaps with slightly grayer skin, and more muted hair and eye colors. Phaerim, due to centuries of being among the lower classes of Drow society, usually don't share their rulers' taste for gaudy and revealing clothing, usually preferring something both practical and protecting.

    Racial Relations
    Phaerim are Drow, despite the latter's protests. They usually live among the lower classes of Drow society, pariahs, doing odd jobs in order to stay alive. The wealthiest among them are assassins, but even they are completely subordinate to even the lowest of Drow. They still hold themselves above other races, however, and do not get along well with free-spirited creatures like elves or gnomes. They get along better with stoic gray dwarves whose inclinations match their own, even though both secretly think the other is beneath them.

    Alignment
    Phaerim are almost always Chaotic and Evil. They may be downtrodden, but they have Lolth's blessing (what else would stop the Drow from wiping them out?) and their poor experiences have made them all the crueler.

    Racial Traits
    • +6 Dex, -2 Con, +2 Int, -2 Wis: Phaerim are naturally quick and intelligent, but they are weak-willed, Lolth's way of keeping them ever-subservient to their Drow masters.
    • Humanoid (Elf, Drow): Phaerim, despite the many changes to their former form, are still elven and are still drow.
    • Racial Hit Dice: A Phaerim begins with two levels of Humanoid, giving it BAB +1, Fort: +0, Ref +3, Will +0, one feat, and skill points equal to 2+ their Int modifier x 5.
    • Base Land Speed 30 ft.
    • Darkvision 60 ft.
    • Racial Skill Bonuses: Phaerim get a +8 racial bonus on Move Silently checks, +15 on Hide checks, and +2 on Listen, Search and Spot checks.
    • Innate Nondetection (Su): A Phaerim's natural ability to Hide is more than just in appearance. Any scrying effect on a Phaerim must succeed on a DC 20 caster level check or fail.
    • Peerless Camoflage (Ex): Phaerim can move at full speed and even run and not take any movement penalties to Hide checks.
    • Trackless Path (Ex): Due to their naturally grace and lightfootedness, Phaerim are more difficult to track. The DC to track them is 10 higher than it normally would be.
    • Spell-Like Abilities: Phaerim share their ancestor's ability to use Dancing Lights, Darkness and Faerie Fire once per day, at a caster level equal to their Hit Dice.
    • As Elves, Phaerim are immune to sleep effects.
    • LA:+3
    • Favored Class: Rogue


    Questions I have about this race:
    Is the LA good? Should it be higher? Is the race irreparably broken?
    Last edited by atemu1234; 2014-07-24 at 08:48 PM. Reason: Nine-Damned Spoilers!
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  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Bad Wolf's Avatar

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    It seems balanced to me, though others might want to disagree.

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    inuyasha's Avatar

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Interesting: Yes, I especially like the fluff you came up with :) good job!
    Broken?: A little, I would recommend maybe nerfing the Dex bonus down to +4 and then call it good. I'm glad somebody else uses advanced bestiary too. Seems like no one appreciates good 3rd party books like that one.
    Come post a magic item to show that not all unique items are immensely powerful tools of the gods!
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    ..What have I done..? What have you done? That poor lantern archon..

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Quote Originally Posted by inuyasha View Post
    Interesting: Yes, I especially like the fluff you came up with :) good job!
    Broken?: A little, I would recommend maybe nerfing the Dex bonus down to +4 and then call it good. I'm glad somebody else uses advanced bestiary too. Seems like no one appreciates good 3rd party books like that one.
    That's a decent idea. You know about any other books like AB?
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    inuyasha's Avatar

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Quote Originally Posted by atemu1234 View Post
    That's a decent idea. You know about any other books like AB?
    My favorite 3rd party book besides that one would probably Goodman Games' book of templates. It's like advanced bestiary but with even more stuff !
    Come post a magic item to show that not all unique items are immensely powerful tools of the gods!
    Jester of The Rudisplorkers Guild!!

    My cool avatar by Kymme
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xuldarinar View Post
    ..What have I done..? What have you done? That poor lantern archon..

    trophies
    The photo got removed, but I'm a silver trophy winner of Pathfinder Grab Bag XII: of Dungeons and Dragons

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    I'm posting this while I can: I promise New races for review tomorrow, hopefully early. Ciao!
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    inuyasha's Avatar

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Quote Originally Posted by atemu1234 View Post
    I'm posting this while I can: I promise New races for review tomorrow, hopefully early. Ciao!
    Cool, I eagerly await another race . Ciao!
    Come post a magic item to show that not all unique items are immensely powerful tools of the gods!
    Jester of The Rudisplorkers Guild!!

    My cool avatar by Kymme
    My homebrew

    Quote Originally Posted by Xuldarinar View Post
    ..What have I done..? What have you done? That poor lantern archon..

    trophies
    The photo got removed, but I'm a silver trophy winner of Pathfinder Grab Bag XII: of Dungeons and Dragons

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    "Phaerimm" are a type of aberration in the Forgotten Realms. You may wish to rename your race in order to prevent confusion between the two.
    Sincerest thanks to Qwernt for the amazing avatar.

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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    As promised, here's my second race.

    Most of the stuff in my campaigns occurs in a homebrewed campaign setting I call Multifaarim. On Multifaarim there are many nations, one of which is the desert nation of Castion. Natives are referred to as "Castonian". It's loosely based on ancient egypt with some other things thrown in. As such, I've made a few unique races that live there.

    Kalisma'at

    Appearance: Kalisma'at appear fairly average. They are too tall to be elves, too short to be humans, too thin to be dwarves. Their skin color tends to be slightly darker, and they tend to favor not having facial hair. Their eyes are almond-shaped and are one of their most distinctive features; their eyes are usually shades of gold, copper, brass or bronze, akin to the scales of metallic dragons in hue and shine.

    History: Kalisma'at were once the children of the Pharaoh. Pharaoh Kalis IV, to be exact. He ruled during one of the golden ages of Castion, and had many concubines and children. But all too soon he found himself nearing the end of his life, and sought to make himself and his role more evident in history. As the Speaker of the Gods, he asked each of the gods of his nation to give his many children a gift. Most gods refused, but one did not. Bahamut, known in Castion as Drama'at, gave his sons and daughters, save for his successor, the blood of his children. Thus the Kalisma'at came to be.

    Alignment: The Kalisma'at have a tendency towards law. Between a regal ancestry and a natural inclination, very few are chaotic. Even fewer are evil, perhaps due to the metallic dragon blood that burns within their veins.

    Racial Traits:
    • Humaoid (Kalisma'at, Dragonblood): Kalisma'at are their own race, and are possessed of the dragonblood subtype.
    • Medium: Kalisma'at are medium-sized and gain no benefits and take no penalties due to size.
    • Base land speed is 30 ft.
    • Darkvision out to 60 feet: Their strange eyes have proven capable of seeing in the dark.
    • +2 racial bonus on Diplomacy and Gather Information checks: Kalisma'at are charismatic and likable, and often occupy high positions in the Castonian government.
    • Favored Class: Kalisma'at are often sorcerers, some say due to the dragon blood that dwells within them.


    Race Relations: Kalisma'at are very humanlike in their relations. They tend to have little inclination towards their partner's race, as much as their partner's personality. They tend to adventure with those that share their (often lawful and good) moral outlook.
    Last edited by atemu1234; 2014-07-25 at 01:20 PM.
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dracomortis View Post
    "Phaerimm" are a type of aberration in the Forgotten Realms. You may wish to rename your race in order to prevent confusion between the two.
    Interesting. I actually got that name from Drow of the Underdark.
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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Here's a third race, also native to a desert.

    Djenn

    Appearance: Djenn appear very strange to outsiders. Their skin looks like the bark of some tree, scorched but saved from burning, and appears thick and difficult to pierce. Their eyes are often extremely colorful, the colors of gemstones such as jade, emerald, ruby or sapphire.

    History: Djenn were once human. They lived in an ancient city long ago, at peace, until war came to them. No one knows who this enemy force was, for when the Djenn knew their end was coming, they made a pact with the plane of elemental fire itself, infusing each and every one of them with it, forever changing them. With newfound power they defeated their enemies, but their city was destroyed, and they became nomadic wanderers.

    Alignment: Djenn are almost always chaotic, free spirits who seek to avoid captivity and civilization.

    Racial Traits:
    • +2 Charisma, -2 Dexterity: Djenn are often charming and likable, despite their appearance. However, their thick carapace makes it difficult for them to move quickly.
    • Base land speed is 30 ft.
    • Humanoid (Fire): Djenn are humanoids with the fire subtype. As such, they are immune to fire and vulnerable to cold.
    • Medium Size: Djenn are medium-sized, taking to penalties and gaining no benefits due to size.
    • Elemental Pact: Djenn cast spells with the Fire descriptor or from the Fire domain at +1 caster level. This benefit does not stack with itself.
    • LA: +1
    • Favored Class: Sorcerer. Djenn are naturally capable of controlling fire magics and make excellent sorcerers.


    Questions about this race: Too powerful for LA +1?
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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Fourth Race! Onward and upward!

    This is a subrace of goblin I made because, well, original goblinoids kind of suck. They were designed to be a kind of "savant" type character, very intelligent, but not particularly wise. I have it at LA +0, basically I think it's on par with Dragon Mag's changelings (not to be confused with Eberron's changelings, very different).

    Nivetic Goblins

    Appearance: Same as goblins, really. Some wear contraptions made of strange metal akin to bronze.

    History: Nivetic Goblins are named for their homelands, the Nivetic mountains. Which is in turn named for a dragon, Nivius, now a god. Nivetic Goblins were once normal goblins, but became a unique subrace through the interference of their deity, Nivius. They've established trade, selling contraptions (some are rube-goldberg devices, others are genuinely useful) and metals they mine. The metal most of their items are made of is an alloy of bronze and mythril.

    Alignment: Usually neutral.

    Racial Traits:
    • -2 Strength, +2 Dexterity, +2 Intelligence, -2 Wisdom
    • Humanoid (Goblinoid): Nivetic Goblins are humanoids with the goblinoid subtype.
    • Base Land Speed is 30 feet.
    • +2 racial bonus on Use Magic Device checks.
    • +4 racial bonus on any craft check that uses Nivium, the metal alloy their contraptions are made of.
    • Darkvision with a range of 60 feet.
    • Favored Class: Artificer


    Now for a homebrewed material:

    Nivium has strange qualities: It has hardness 12, and 15 hit points per inch of thickness, but is also difficult to work into items. It costs +50 gp to work into ammunition, +3000 gp to work into light armor, +6000 to work into medium armor, and +9000 to work into heavy armor. Weapons cost an additional 2000 gp, and shields an additional 3000. Craft checks made to make an item with Nivium take a -2 penalty. It provides the armor with DR 5/Electricity, which doesn't extend to the user.

    Rate either the creature or the material, because neither is something I'm completely sure about.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Kalisma'at:

    Compared to normal humans, Silverbrow Humans trade bonus human skill points for dragonblood subtype (1), +2/Disguise (2), and a feather fall SLA (3). This is a good trade in a minority of builds where the dragonblooded is important.

    Compared to Silverbrow Humans, Kalis trade the humanoid subtype, the disguise boost, the feather fall SLA, the bonus feat, and the favored class (Any) for darkvision and +2 to two skills. This is a bad trade. Kalisma'at are worse than a race that is worse than humans. When figuring out if a race is good, you sort of have to compare it to the best races in its category, because why would someone take a race just because it's better than the worst?

    I'd suggest making Kalima'at into refluffed silverbrow humans, and exchange feather fall+favored class+humanoid subtype for the darkvision if you choose. By giving up the feat the race has no raison d'Ítre.

    Djenn:

    Decent stat mods for a sorc/bard/spontaneous caster, but everyone needs dexterity. Shame the hit's not to strength or something. This is better than nothing.
    Fire subtype: This is good, although in most campaigns not enough to carry a race. Exceptions include "Fury of the red dragons" or whatever.
    +1 CL on bad evocations and Orb of Fire: Better than nothing?

    I wouldn't take this class if it were LA 0. Fire immunity is fun, but it has a downside, and its utility just comes down to "how often does the GM decide to run an encounter against fire enemies so you can look awesome"? I don't like to build a character that's specifically effective in ways that are almost 100% GM-controlled. And if he gets mad, cryohydra and you are sad.

    Nivetic:

    Good mods for an arcane caster, swift hunter, ranged rogue, or one or two other builds. I'm assuming they're small, meaning the class has +2 AC by default. Then darkvision, +2 UMD, and minor buffs elsewhere. Basically a goblin with +2 int, -6 skill mods, and a more powerful racial class. Definitely LA0, and a good LA0 at that.

    The material:

    Most players in my experience don't worry about materials until rather high levels, at which point they get something awesome. They'd then choose Mithral or Adamantine, or Baatorian Green Steel (FC2), Blended Quartz (AEG), Bluewood (UE), Darksteel/Dlarun/Fever Iron/Hizaghuur (MoF), Dragonbone (Drac), Glasssteel, Pandemic Silver... These are materials that add damage to attacks, DR, reduce ASF/Lightness, add range to shots, add AC, make enemies cower...

    Basically, materials are worthwhile if they do something for the player. At low levels nobody gets any except in rare circumstances (Mithral mainly, or druid woody stuff), and at high levels the players will pick one that increase their damage, AC, or similar.

    If you remove all the good custom materials from your campaign world, it might be a decent thing to blow money on at high levels, but it's not worth the trouble otherwise. You could always make it stackable with other materials (like Ysgardian Heartwire) or cost significantly less (like 10x less or more). Even still I don't think I would buy it.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Quote Originally Posted by bekeleven View Post
    Kalisma'at:

    Compared to normal humans, Silverbrow Humans trade bonus human skill points for dragonblood subtype (1), +2/Disguise (2), and a feather fall SLA (3). This is a good trade in a minority of builds where the dragonblooded is important.

    Compared to Silverbrow Humans, Kalis trade the humanoid subtype, the disguise boost, the feather fall SLA, the bonus feat, and the favored class (Any) for darkvision and +2 to two skills. This is a bad trade. Kalisma'at are worse than a race that is worse than humans. When figuring out if a race is good, you sort of have to compare it to the best races in its category, because why would someone take a race just because it's better than the worst?

    I'd suggest making Kalima'at into refluffed silverbrow humans, and exchange feather fall+favored class+humanoid subtype for the darkvision if you choose. By giving up the feat the race has no raison d'Ítre.

    Djenn:

    Decent stat mods for a sorc/bard/spontaneous caster, but everyone needs dexterity. Shame the hit's not to strength or something. This is better than nothing.
    Fire subtype: This is good, although in most campaigns not enough to carry a race. Exceptions include "Fury of the red dragons" or whatever.
    +1 CL on bad evocations and Orb of Fire: Better than nothing?

    I wouldn't take this class if it were LA 0. Fire immunity is fun, but it has a downside, and its utility just comes down to "how often does the GM decide to run an encounter against fire enemies so you can look awesome"? I don't like to build a character that's specifically effective in ways that are almost 100% GM-controlled. And if he gets mad, cryohydra and you are sad.

    Nivetic:

    Good mods for an arcane caster, swift hunter, ranged rogue, or one or two other builds. I'm assuming they're small, meaning the class has +2 AC by default. Then darkvision, +2 UMD, and minor buffs elsewhere. Basically a goblin with +2 int, -6 skill mods, and a more powerful racial class. Definitely LA0, and a good LA0 at that.

    The material:

    Most players in my experience don't worry about materials until rather high levels, at which point they get something awesome. They'd then choose Mithral or Adamantine, or Baatorian Green Steel (FC2), Blended Quartz (AEG), Bluewood (UE), Darksteel/Dlarun/Fever Iron/Hizaghuur (MoF), Dragonbone (Drac), Glasssteel, Pandemic Silver... These are materials that add damage to attacks, DR, reduce ASF/Lightness, add range to shots, add AC, make enemies cower...

    Basically, materials are worthwhile if they do something for the player. At low levels nobody gets any except in rare circumstances (Mithral mainly, or druid woody stuff), and at high levels the players will pick one that increase their damage, AC, or similar.

    If you remove all the good custom materials from your campaign world, it might be a decent thing to blow money on at high levels, but it's not worth the trouble otherwise. You could always make it stackable with other materials (like Ysgardian Heartwire) or cost significantly less (like 10x less or more). Even still I don't think I would buy it.
    Thanks for the input! I've been AFK for a week, it's good to see someone rating myself. So so far, Kalisma'at need something like 3/day Mage hand or something, the material won't see much use, and Djenn need a lower LA. I'll be posting more races tomorrow hopefully.
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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    I really like the Djenn, you can never have enough magical folk with a suitably fairy tale-like origin story in your setting. It makes the magic of the game seem so much more alive and involved in the world.

    Totally get the charisma bonus, not sure why you decided on the -2 dex, if anything they should get a penalty to wisdom. If their whole gimmick is based on fire, that should translate to their personality too, burning passion and firey rage and all that, the same thing that makes them more compelling and charismatic also makes them bad at picking up on subtleties and making sound judgement.

    I think the backstory could use some reworking too: They did not live in peace, they were warriors and conquerors, they spread out across the plains and they burned them down until only desert was left. Because they loved and worshipped the fire, the fire kept them warm at night and in fire they forged their weapons, to them it was and still is a symbol of survival and supremacy. And when they were finally wiped out by their neighbours in vengeance for their warlike ways, they didn't make a pact with the fire elementals like a syccophant might, the fire came down because the Djenn's spirits were as close to fire as a human soul could be and because they were connected to the fire and the fire recognized them as its children and it saved them.

    Theming, man. If you make a fantasy race, don't just take an ability or a certain way of thinking and tack it on to a normal human, if you're gonna create fire people, make them all about fire in every aspect. Your other race ideas are fine, but they're just cultures or even subcultures of already existing ones and not even particularly good ones. No reason I couldn't play a standard drow like a phaerim, or a standard human who just happens to be from Kalis, but nothing I can pick out from the normal books (or at least in none of the books I read) is like the Djenn.

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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    I really appreciate, the advice, guys.

    This next race I call Emotians. Three guesses from that name what they do. Anyway, they're one of my favorite races that I've made, despite the fact they come across as more than a little weird.

    Appearance: Emotians look human, with a few vaguely elfin features such as pointed ears, as well as thinner and more petite bodies. Their hair is often platinum or silver in color, and their eyes are also often strange colors such as purple or orange.

    History: Little is known about the true history of Emotians. All that is known is that they were discovered, living in villages in the Borderlands of Multifaarim, especially in forested areas. Unfortunately, their race is infamous for oft being captured as slaves.

    Alignment: Most Emotians are Neutral Good or Chaotic Good. Their contact telepathy ability (see below) makes it easy for them to be empathetic to other creatures, making those rare evil few insane sadomasochists.

    Racial Traits:
    • -2 STR, -2 CON, +2 INT: Emotians are petite and fragile in comparison to other humanoids, but their ability to feel the thoughts of others they come in contact with makes it easy for them to be quick learners.
    • Humanoid: Emotians, despite their strange abilities, are still humanoids.
    • Medium Size
    • Base land speed is 30 ft.
    • Contact Telepathy (Su): An Emotian who makes physical contact with another being makes a telepathic link to it that lasts the duration of the touch. They are capable of reading surface thoughts and communicating telepathically via touch. The person who is in contact with the Emotian can in turn read the Emotian's thoughts and surface emotions. Any attempt to lie in the telepathic exchange is much more difficult due to the nature of concealing thoughts, therefore bluff checks are made at a -8 penalty. In combat this can be used as a touch attack with a successful grapple check, in which the person who is attacked with it must succeed on a Will Save (DC 10 + 1/2 the Emotian's Character Level + The Emotian's Intelligence Modifier) or be stunned for 1d3 rounds.
    • Automatic Languages: None. Emotians among other Emotians communicate solely by touch. Those with an Intelligence score high enough to learn bonus languages, however, are still capable of speech, and can learn any language as a bonus language, save secret languages such as Druidic.
    • Favored Class: Wizard. Emotians are intelligent and magical beings, making Wizardry a natural calling to them. Also, due to the nature of their Contact Telepathy ability allowing them to communicate knowledge easily, they gain the wizard class as a Simple class as opposed to a Complex one when determining starting age.


    Questions about this race: Is the constitution penalty a bit much? I would think the Contact Telepathy ability would justify an overall negative ability modifier. Also, is it good at LA: +0?
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    Default Re: Rate my Homebrewed Races!

    Balance-wise that's very odd. Normally a con penalty hurts, but in core int bonuses always come with them at LA0 (See: gray elf).

    I see Contact Telepathy and I want to build a character around it. I'm thinking Emotian Factotum with human heritage (assuming emotians count as half-human or human-descended) prestiging into human paragon and chameleon, but straight factotum works too. Pump int to 30 or 40 and build a stun-based attack routine. 1D3 rounds is a good amount of time in combat.

    Basically, the class is pretty good for wizards because it has an int boost, but probably not as good as a human with its bonus feat (or, at high op level, elf with 3 DCS feats). For melee characters, it gives stat penalties but a fun stunning attack, meaning if built correctly, it could be very powerful in one circumstance but whenever that's negated, it sucks worse than most races - sort of like a rogue without penetrating strike. This is a common build. I don't like the style ("Generally effective, occasionally useless"), but it's common in D&D.

    The question here is: how do you picture this society? With their STR and CON, these guys are physical pushovers, but they can stun people with a touch at will. If anything, I'd figure that makes them the oppressors, not oppressed. Get orcs to do manual labor, and if they rebel, stun and coup de grace. I dunno. Basically it gives decent caster numbers but no caster abilities, then gives melee abilities but no melee numbers. I don't know what to make of it. Mechanically, it feels scattered. What do you want a player to build with this race? The strongest build I can think of is a factotum specced for social manipulation and sneaking.

    As far as fluff, I hope you know the secret of the race's origin, even if you don't tell PCs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bekeleven View Post
    Balance-wise that's very odd. Normally a con penalty hurts, but in core int bonuses always come with them at LA0 (See: gray elf).

    I see Contact Telepathy and I want to build a character around it. I'm thinking Emotian Factotum with human heritage (assuming emotians count as half-human or human-descended) prestiging into human paragon and chameleon, but straight factotum works too. Pump int to 30 or 40 and build a stun-based attack routine. 1D3 rounds is a good amount of time in combat.

    Basically, the class is pretty good for wizards because it has an int boost, but probably not as good as a human with its bonus feat (or, at high op level, elf with 3 DCS feats). For melee characters, it gives stat penalties but a fun stunning attack, meaning if built correctly, it could be very powerful in one circumstance but whenever that's negated, it sucks worse than most races - sort of like a rogue without penetrating strike. This is a common build. I don't like the style ("Generally effective, occasionally useless"), but it's common in D&D.

    The question here is: how do you picture this society? With their STR and CON, these guys are physical pushovers, but they can stun people with a touch at will. If anything, I'd figure that makes them the oppressors, not oppressed. Get orcs to do manual labor, and if they rebel, stun and coup de grace. I dunno. Basically it gives decent caster numbers but no caster abilities, then gives melee abilities but no melee numbers. I don't know what to make of it. Mechanically, it feels scattered. What do you want a player to build with this race? The strongest build I can think of is a factotum specced for social manipulation and sneaking.

    As far as fluff, I hope you know the secret of the race's origin, even if you don't tell PCs.
    Logistically, most of their kind would be lvl-1 commoners with a strength penalty. The attack requires a successful grapple to use (did I forget to mention that? I'll check above) at least in melee, so it's fairly difficult for them to be oppressors especially with a bonus constitution penalty. Not to mention they are, for the most part, highly empathetic. They literally feel the creature's pain when they stun them. That's supposed to also sting from a roleplaying perspective.



    I also wrote them their own paragon class, they aren't human-descended, so no chameleon. Apologies.
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    Time for a subrace of mine.

    The Concept: These were made because I wanted a subrace of drow that has a decent reason for being nonevil (please don't hate me, I built the fluff specifically to avoid drizzt-expy hate).

    Bloodeye Drow

    Appearance: Bloodeye Drow appear highly similar to normal drow, but with one exception- they all have crimson eyes (not just iris but sclera as well), which sets them apart from normal drow.

    History: None knows what first resulted in the birth of Bloodeye Drow. All that is known is that it was widespread and resulted in a high number of births from normal drow producing Bloodeye Drow. They were accepted, for the most part, because they were pretty much exactly like other drow except with red eyes. Many accepted it as a genetic quirk. But when the generation reached maturity, Lolth herself noticed a strange phenomena; rather than giving her souls to punish, the death of a Bloodeye Drow produced nothing. No soul, as if the spirit had died with the body. These Drow could still be resurrected, but they had no afterlife (at least not Lolth's). This resulted in her ordering her priestesses directly to slaughter the Bloodeye Drow. The Bloodeye were either killed or escaped, resulting in a nomadic people owing loyalty to no god or goddess.

    Alignment: It has been twelve generations since the Bloodeye left their kin. In that time, they have (for the most part) had enormous cultural development; at the very least, away from Lolth's corrupting influence, they have become more accepting of other alignments, and most from the last few generations have been neutral. Some are even good (though these are still fairly rare, they exist and are an unpersecuted minority).

    Dogma: This is an important distinction: Many Bloodeye believe they have souls, but have their own afterlife, separate from Lolth's and even that of other races. Others believe they have a deity of their own who is gathering them, as opposed to Lolth. Very few believe they are truly soulless.

    Racial Traits: Bloodeye Drow are identical to normal drow, save for the following traits:
    • Bloodeye Drow have the Planetouched subtype
    • Bloodeye Drow lack the Darkness and Faerie Fire spell-like abilities.
    • LA: +1


    Racial Feats: These exist for me to create them more similarly to normal Drow.

    Magically Gifted (General)
    Prerequisites: Bloodeye Drow, first-level only.
    Benefit: You gain the Darkness and Faerie Fire spell-like abilities which can be used once per day. Their caster level equals your character level.

    Questions: Too tacky ? As-is, is it too powerful? Too derivative?
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    Mechanically, they lose one mediocre utility SLA, one good utility SLA, and one point of LA.

    This moved Drow from bad LA+2 to quite good LA+1. Is 1 point of LA worth +4 mental stats, DV120, SR11+Level, +2 on every will save that matters, and a few minor things? I'd say so. It's certainly a better deal than nearly every other LA+1 race. Might even be worth taking over the best LA0, especially if LA buyoff is in play.

    So, I get you making a higher-powered drow, they need it. Onto the fluff:

    "with one exception- they all have crimson eyes (not just iris but sclera as well), which sets them apart from normal drow." - They're different because of X, which make them different. Sorry, pet peeve.

    I am guessing that the drow were not actually too gung-ho about this murdilating thing. After all: They were a minority, possibly a small minority, of drow (let's call it 10% of drow their age). A few die by adulthood - According to the 2003 national vital statistics report, 99% of americans survive to D&D's "Adulthood" age of 15. So assuming that magic substitutes for modern health care, in a total population of drow with 1 million minors, 100k are bloodeye. By the time the oldest are at the age of "adulthood," which for drow is 110 (Und), nearly 1000 have died and Lolth has had over a century to puzzle over the first 687, which were crib deaths. Let's assume by now she orders their deaths.

    I'm going to estimate that half are killed/ambushed before the word spreads about what's happening, in a race ruled with such a tight spider's leg. Then the rest, 50k children and adolescents, which have no class levels, must flee society on their own. Being generous, half of them make it: 2.5% of drow population their age. According to the 2000 US Census, 21.4% of the US population is 0-14 years old. So, one half of a percent of the drow population, all completely without experience, manages to desert. Then they link up in some way that allows them to establish a dozen generations of culture (a generation in drow terms being around 150 years, so nearly 2 millenia), but at the same time didn't allow the drow to find them and hunt them down.

    Note that a minor population of 1 million means a total drow population of just over 5 million. So if there were more, the situation becomes even more lopsided.

    Takeaways:

    • Lolth is a bit on the slow side. She really should have figured this out when .69% of them died in the first year after their births.
    • Many probably escaped because family and friends went against Lolth to let them go. That said, the best and brightest of Lolth tend to be closest to her (priests and wizards) so the ones that mattered the most would give the least quarter.
    • Hunting them is waaaay low on Lolth's priorities list. It's possible it was never even tried once the survivors escaped. Unless they prodigiously outbred normal drow, their population ratio will be similar as when they left.


    Also, I assume that either
    (a) bloodeye drow were all born at once (over one, or a few, years), in which case why; or
    (b) bloodeye drow were born of a period of 100+ years, but stopped when drows kicked them out, in which case why; or
    (c) drow still give birth to bloodeye, but kill them.

    I also assume bloodeye never give birth to drow.

    Sources: 2003 Life Table, 2000 Age Demographics, Underdark P21, PHB 109

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    So Bloodeyes are like ginger drow?
    Last edited by Gracht Grabmaw; 2014-08-06 at 07:35 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bekeleven View Post
    Mechanically, they lose one mediocre utility SLA, one good utility SLA, and one point of LA.

    This moved Drow from bad LA+2 to quite good LA+1. Is 1 point of LA worth +4 mental stats, DV120, SR11+Level, +2 on every will save that matters, and a few minor things? I'd say so. It's certainly a better deal than nearly every other LA+1 race. Might even be worth taking over the best LA0, especially if LA buyoff is in play.

    So, I get you making a higher-powered drow, they need it. Onto the fluff:

    "with one exception- they all have crimson eyes (not just iris but sclera as well), which sets them apart from normal drow." - They're different because of X, which make them different. Sorry, pet peeve.

    I am guessing that the drow were not actually too gung-ho about this murdilating thing. After all: They were a minority, possibly a small minority, of drow (let's call it 10% of drow their age). A few die by adulthood - According to the 2003 national vital statistics report, 99% of americans survive to D&D's "Adulthood" age of 15. So assuming that magic substitutes for modern health care, in a total population of drow with 1 million minors, 100k are bloodeye. By the time the oldest are at the age of "adulthood," which for drow is 110 (Und), nearly 1000 have died and Lolth has had over a century to puzzle over the first 687, which were crib deaths. Let's assume by now she orders their deaths.

    I'm going to estimate that half are killed/ambushed before the word spreads about what's happening, in a race ruled with such a tight spider's leg. Then the rest, 50k children and adolescents, which have no class levels, must flee society on their own. Being generous, half of them make it: 2.5% of drow population their age. According to the 2000 US Census, 21.4% of the US population is 0-14 years old. So, one half of a percent of the drow population, all completely without experience, manages to desert. Then they link up in some way that allows them to establish a dozen generations of culture (a generation in drow terms being around 150 years, so nearly 2 millenia), but at the same time didn't allow the drow to find them and hunt them down.

    Note that a minor population of 1 million means a total drow population of just over 5 million. So if there were more, the situation becomes even more lopsided.

    Takeaways:

    • Lolth is a bit on the slow side. She really should have figured this out when .69% of them died in the first year after their births.
    • Many probably escaped because family and friends went against Lolth to let them go. That said, the best and brightest of Lolth tend to be closest to her (priests and wizards) so the ones that mattered the most would give the least quarter.
    • Hunting them is waaaay low on Lolth's priorities list. It's possible it was never even tried once the survivors escaped. Unless they prodigiously outbred normal drow, their population ratio will be similar as when they left.


    Also, I assume that either
    (a) bloodeye drow were all born at once (over one, or a few, years), in which case why; or
    (b) bloodeye drow were born of a period of 100+ years, but stopped when drows kicked them out, in which case why; or
    (c) drow still give birth to bloodeye, but kill them.

    I also assume bloodeye never give birth to drow.

    Sources: 2003 Life Table, 2000 Age Demographics, Underdark P21, PHB 109
    Statistically, Lolth gets tens of thousands of souls daily. She doesn't keep personal quota of each one from birth to death (she's chaotic evil, not lawful evil) she's only going to start noticing once first generation bloodeye reach adulthood and wind up dying in large numbers. Also, let's go with option number C.

    Bloodeye Drow are simply the result of magical experimentation, infusing the populace with different types of arcane energy. The case in question is that of a demonic source. I thought the irony of demon powers making Drow (in the long run) more good was hilarious, at least to me.
    Last edited by atemu1234; 2014-08-06 at 09:14 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by atemu1234 View Post
    Statistically, Lolth gets tens of thousands of souls daily. She doesn't keep personal quota of each one from birth to death .
    You know of all the things Lolth does this one seems the most cruel. Even the devil takes time out of his day to personally get to know you and tempt you into sin and devise a punishment specifically for you.

    Anyway, pretty nice but I think you could take the freakish appearance a bit further than just the eyes. Keep the eyes for all of them, but make a small table for even weirder birth defects. Seemingly random scarring somewhere on the body, unnatural hair colors (or total hairlessness), a complexion that resembles goblin green or hobgoblin red or even worse: surface elf pink.
    If you're gonna make a race of mutant outcasts, go full hog, think about what looks hideous to a dark elf and do all of that.
    Last edited by Gracht Grabmaw; 2014-08-07 at 01:42 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by atemu1234 View Post
    Statistically, Lolth gets tens of thousands of souls daily. She doesn't keep personal quota of each one from birth to death (she's chaotic evil, not lawful evil) she's only going to start noticing once first generation bloodeye reach adulthood and wind up dying in large numbers. Also, let's go with option number C.

    Bloodeye Drow are simply the result of magical experimentation, infusing the populace with different types of arcane energy. The case in question is that of a demonic source. I thought the irony of demon powers making Drow (in the long run) more good was hilarious, at least to me.
    1 - If Lolth gets 10,000 Drow souls daily, and the population remains relatively stable, then we can calculate... based on a mean lifespan of, say, 175 years (the equivalent of 35 for humans), then there are 638.8 million drow. Also, for that to be the case, that means that the crib deaths year 1 go up from 687 to 87,764 - hopefully enough for her to notice, even if each year has a total of 3.6 million deaths.

    2 - Lolth has Drow in her portfolio, meaning she instantly senses any event that affect drow (specifically, "senses anything that affects drow welfare the instant it happens and retains the sensation" - and if they don't count as drow, she'd probably notice that instead). I sort of assumed that disappearing souls would count; it may not. That said, you're free to rip up Deities and Demigods, it's pretty rare that those rules do anything but screw with you. I know my games have no statted gods...

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    Quote Originally Posted by bekeleven View Post
    1 - If Lolth gets 10,000 Drow souls daily, and the population remains relatively stable, then we can calculate... based on a mean lifespan of, say, 175 years (the equivalent of 35 for humans), then there are 638.8 million drow. Also, for that to be the case, that means that the crib deaths year 1 go up from 687 to 87,764 - hopefully enough for her to notice, even if each year has a total of 3.6 million deaths.

    2 - Lolth has Drow in her portfolio, meaning she instantly senses any event that affect drow (specifically, "senses anything that affects drow welfare the instant it happens and retains the sensation" - and if they don't count as drow, she'd probably notice that instead). I sort of assumed that disappearing souls would count; it may not. That said, you're free to rip up Deities and Demigods, it's pretty rare that those rules do anything but screw with you. I know my games have no statted gods...
    I tend to stat my gods for no other reason than boredom. I have no intentions of the PCs ever being on the same plane as them, let alone near enough in range and power to pose a threat to them. I've made most of them higher level than the ones presented in that book.

    Also, Lolth only "knows" what her followers do or even what is known in general. Until the Bloodeye Drow started dying enough for her to pay attention to them, she had no reason to assume she wasn't getting them due to them not having souls. Maybe they sold their souls to devils or something similar. That has no relation to the Drow themselves, but that's all up to my interpretation.

    Edit: Another thing to remember is that roughly one in ten hundred is a Bloodeye. It was more common in that area in that time mostly due to the First House's experimentation at that time with demonic energies.
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    Time for another race! Yay!

    In all seriousness I do appreciate the input. It's much easier to run this past you guys than have it show up in my campaigns and be broken.

    This race is one I call Hedronic Vampires and their half-human version, the Hedronic Dhampir.

    Hedronic Vampires are native to the forest of Hedros. They worship Lolth as their patron deity. They're vaguely shamanistic.

    Appearance: Hedronic Vampires appear almost human, but with fangs and purple skin. The name vampire is bequeathed to them solely due to their teeth. They actually don't need to drink blood to survive, nor are undead.

    History: They were created due to an intermixture of human and demon blood, mostly demons owing loyalty to Lolth. They are the bane of trade caravans that travel through the forest as the quickest route.

    Racial Traits:
    • +2 Str, +2 Dex, -2 Int, -2 Wis
    • Monstrous Humanoid Type
    • Medium Size
    • Base Land Speed is 30 ft.
    • Natural Bite Attack: 1d3
    • +2 racial bonus on Climb, Jump, Hide and Move Silently checks.
    • Blood Frenzy (Su): If a Hedronic Vampire deals damage with its bite attack in combat, it gains +2 to Strength and Constitution for 1d4 rounds. At the end of the 1d4 rounds, the Hedronic Vampire is fatigued, unless they have something that would prevent a Rage from causing fatigue.
    • Darkvision with a range of 120 ft.
    • Favored Class: Barbarian
    • LA: +3 (I never really intend to use this one as a player race, more or less a monster race. The Hedronic Dhampir is the one I really need looked at).


    Hedronic Dhampirs are sired usually by Hedronic Vampire fathers and Human mothers. Their appearance more or less matches that of their father, with less pronounced teeth.

    Hedronic Dhampir Racial Traits:
    • +2 Dex, -2 Wis: Hedronic Dhampirs are fast but are also quick to act, without thinking actions through.
    • Humanoid Type: They inherit the humanoid type from their human parent.
    • Medium Size
    • Base Land Speed is 30 ft.
    • +2 Racial Bonus on Intimidate and Bluff Checks
    • Favored Class: Ranger
    • LA: +0
    Last edited by atemu1234; 2014-08-07 at 04:31 PM. Reason: Specifics
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    Well, first off, it's a monstrous humanoid. This means simple weapon proficiency off the bat as well as some armors if you have a sample creature built (you know, level 1 warrior and all that). Now, as to the race...

    Neutral stat mods, and favoring a skirmisher build. The thing is most skirmishers are skill monkeys as well, and you're penalizing skills with the int hit. So stats aren't terribly great.

    The bite attack is an extra 1/2 strength at the end of a full attack, which isn't bad I guess. On the cheesier end of the optimization scale, they can wield mouthpick weapons and thus get an extra greatsword, take multiweapon fighting, and slice'n'dice.

    +8 to skills, 4 on stealth, 4 on acrobatic skills that are useless once people get Fly (except leap attack). And since they have LA+3, that will be when this character is level 2. So half the skill bonus is basically wasted.

    DV120 isn't bad.

    Blood Frenzy gives some minor buffs then adds some minor penalties in 1D4 rounds. It's still decent for a few reasons. First off, no restriction on biting multiple times per combat. Second, it doesn't stack fatigue into exhaustion. Third, I think you can bite to chain it mid-frenzy (If I fall back on the rules for stacking spells, this resets the duration, meaning if you bite every round you never get fatigued). So that's actually a reason you might not want mouthpick. besides it being very, very silly.

    Overall I'd call this around LA+1 (maybe +2).

    The Dhampir follow:
    • +2 dex -2 wis, so basically, yay skirmishers and ranged attackers, boo divine casters and classes with poor will saves.
    • +2 to two skills. Oddly, no overlap with the parent race. These skill mods encourage a social character, although they so far get buffs to physical skills and minuses to mentals (like sense motive and perception). I guess they could talk their way out of a botched sleight of hand...
    • Favored class: Ranger. A divine caster with a poor will save. Not what I would have chosen.


    Overall this class is weak for LA+0. I would give it one of the following: Bonus feat (selectable or not a crappy one), a natural attack, or something else that opens up character options. A positive overall stat mod is nice too, but it's just numbers. A race should work for you in a way that grants options to you desired path. That's why humans are considered the best general LA+0: Bonus feat and skills helps any build, and does so by allowing it to do things no other Level X can do.

    Also, I assume 30ft move. If it's 40 that actually opens up some stuff, but I assume it's not. If it's 20,

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    Quote Originally Posted by bekeleven View Post
    Well, first off, it's a monstrous humanoid. This means simple weapon proficiency off the bat as well as some armors if you have a sample creature built (you know, level 1 warrior and all that). Now, as to the race...

    Neutral stat mods, and favoring a skirmisher build. The thing is most skirmishers are skill monkeys as well, and you're penalizing skills with the int hit. So stats aren't terribly great.

    The bite attack is an extra 1/2 strength at the end of a full attack, which isn't bad I guess. On the cheesier end of the optimization scale, they can wield mouthpick weapons and thus get an extra greatsword, take multiweapon fighting, and slice'n'dice.

    +8 to skills, 4 on stealth, 4 on acrobatic skills that are useless once people get Fly (except leap attack). And since they have LA+3, that will be when this character is level 2. So half the skill bonus is basically wasted.

    DV120 isn't bad.

    Blood Frenzy gives some minor buffs then adds some minor penalties in 1D4 rounds. It's still decent for a few reasons. First off, no restriction on biting multiple times per combat. Second, it doesn't stack fatigue into exhaustion. Third, I think you can bite to chain it mid-frenzy (If I fall back on the rules for stacking spells, this resets the duration, meaning if you bite every round you never get fatigued). So that's actually a reason you might not want mouthpick. besides it being very, very silly.

    Overall I'd call this around LA+1 (maybe +2).

    The Dhampir follow:
    • +2 dex -2 wis, so basically, yay skirmishers and ranged attackers, boo divine casters and classes with poor will saves.
    • +2 to two skills. Oddly, no overlap with the parent race. These skill mods encourage a social character, although they so far get buffs to physical skills and minuses to mentals (like sense motive and perception). I guess they could talk their way out of a botched sleight of hand...
    • Favored class: Ranger. A divine caster with a poor will save. Not what I would have chosen.


    Overall this class is weak for LA+0. I would give it one of the following: Bonus feat (selectable or not a crappy one), a natural attack, or something else that opens up character options. A positive overall stat mod is nice too, but it's just numbers. A race should work for you in a way that grants options to you desired path. That's why humans are considered the best general LA+0: Bonus feat and skills helps any build, and does so by allowing it to do things no other Level X can do.

    Also, I assume 30ft move. If it's 40 that actually opens up some stuff, but I assume it's not. If it's 20,
    Maybe if I throw in +2 to Survival and Track as a bonus feat? Sorry about the patchiness of my commenting. Been away from internet.
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    Well, it's your races, of course. If I were balancing them, I'd probably:

    Drop the vampires to LA+2, give them stat mods of +2 Str, +4 Dex, -2 Wis. 40 foot move. Increase the frenzy duration to 1D3+2 rounds so that you can miss a bite for a round or two and not get screwed by a low roll.

    As for the dhampir: I'd give them stat mods of +2 dex, and grant them some extra benefit as well: a feat like track, 40ft move, +1 skill/level, or multiple of these.

    Note that I'm recommending balance changes that put these close to the power level of humans, warforged, dwarves, strongheart halflings, lesser planetouched, etc. I expect them to be better than a half-orc, half-elf, elf (without chaos shuffle), gnomes, etc.

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