View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Telekinetic Electric Dolphins? A Race-in-Progress [PEACH]

2019-03-08, 04:03 PM
Howdy homebrew aficionados!

I'm working on a 5e campaign setting that's somewhere in tone between Fallout and Adventure Time, what I feel like is a good combination of fun, dangerous and weird, and making some custom races to spice up the available options. One race in particular is giving me a little trouble, I feel like I might have tried to cram too much into it. Admittedly I cribbed the concept from Pathfinder, specifically their book First World - Realm of the Fey, but the design spoke to me. It really felt like something I could adapt into this world I'm cooking up, but more than that I felt like I could make it playable too! Maybe I went a little too far, I'm not sure. I'm hoping the knowledgeable folks on this board could help me determine that.

Alright, enough preamble. Here's the original, the source of inspiration for the race I'm working on: the Ekekeh (https://i.imgur.com/FFj25Yv.jpg). It's a fun idea, reminds me of Douglas Adams' book So Long and Thanks for all the Fish, so I wanted to try my hand at adapting them into a playable race. Here's what I came up with.

Children of the waves gifted with psychic power and the ability to channel electricity. Their society has recently
undergone a bloody revolution to open their borders and their people are eager to explore what lies beyond their waters.

Size: Medium
Speed: 25 (Levitation), Swim 50
Ability Score Increase: Your Wisdom score increases by 1

Cumara Kinesis: You know the Mage Hand cantrip and when you cast Mage Hand it has no maximum duration. The effect is ended when you decide to end it or you lose consciousness. You can levitate overland at a speed of up to half your Swim Speed. This ability only functions over solid surfaces and cannot be used to float across wide gaps or over liquids.

Defensive Upbringing: The Cumaran government trains its citizens from childhood to be able to defend their territory from aquatic threats and land-dwelling interlopers. Choose one of the following training options:
Combat Training
You were taught to fight and to channel your natural electricity into your attacks. Your bite deals 1d4 piercing damage and the first successful unarmed attack you make in a round deals 1d4 electric damage. You are proficient with the goring horn (as the war pick) and flipper blade (as the sickle) weapons, and are able to make charge attacks as per the Charger feat. Your Strength score increases by 2.

Spell Training
You learned how to enhance your magic with your natural electricity. Spells you cast that deal electric damage deal an additional 1d4 electric damage. Once per long rest you can change the damage type of a spell to deal electric damage instead. Your Intelligence score increases by 2.

There are probably better ways to phrase their racial traits, but as far as I reckon they're pretty much done. It might be necessary to add a feature that says something like, "Due to your unusual anatomy you can't use some weapons" because I can't for the life of me imagine these dolphins using a bow or stuff like that. I'm interested in hearing what the homebrew crew thinks of my work on this. Is it too strong in some parts, or not strong enough? Is it just too weird to work as a player race? Tell me your thoughts!

2019-03-08, 04:58 PM
what happens when there is storm clerics with that race?
1d4 bonus damage on most of what you do?

2019-03-08, 06:14 PM
This sounds really cool! Telekinetic dolphin people is a brilliant idea.

I do find the backstory of the race to jar a little with their inspiration though. The popular perception of Dolphins is of kindly, inquisitive creatures; but here they come from a militaristic society where one of their major racial traits derives from going through national service! I'm not saying this is necessarily a bad thing (indeed it might be more interesting to play against the tropes), but I did find it interesting.

2019-03-08, 09:55 PM
Some other people I've asked about this race said that giving out the equivalent of a feat as a racial trait (the Charger aspect of Combat Training) isn't the best way to go. Also, Echolocaton keeps being suggested but I'm not into giving players a form of True Sight as a racial.

Not sure if taking the free feat away weakens the Combat option for Cumara to an un-fun degree, but I'm also unsure what to substitute in its place if I did so. I'm open to ideas!

@noob: If a player wanted to do that with their character I wouldn't oppose them. A dolphin cleric sounds fun for both mechanics and roleplay.

@OmSwaOperations: I wanted to play against the "fun loving sea critters" stereotype and decided that Cumara was a militant, isolationist society for generations before recent rebellion (think the French Revolutions in terms of bloody) usurped the ruling body of their nation and opened their borders to free trade and commerce.