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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Mephibosheth's Avatar

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    Default new race submitted for your review

    This is a long post, sorry. This is a race I'm creating for an India-based desert world I'm creating. I've modeled them after the fremen from Dune. I'm most interested in balance. It seems like they're pretty balanced with the core races, but they may be far enough on the strong side as to merit a +1 LA. Let me know your opinions. Also, any suggestions on how to make them better would be welcomed.

    New Race – Gunchadh (desert rider)
    The Gunchadh are a nomadic tribal humanoid race that live in the deep desert. Very little is known about their habits and lifestyles, except that they are skilled warriors and raiders and they lead exceedingly tough lives.
    Personality – The Gunchadh tend to be reserved and wary around outsiders. They regard anyone who isn’t from their tribe as a possible threat to their way of life. They regard non-Gunchadh with even more suspicion than they do members of other Gunchadh tribes. However, if you win their trust, they are exceedingly loyal companions. Additionally, they value competence above all other attributes. The highest form of praise among the Gunchadh is “your plan worked” and similar, understated compliments. Finally, Gunchadh place the good of the tribe (or whatever group they’re loyal to) above all personal considerations, a trait they developed out of generations of survival in the deep desert.
    Physical Description – Gunchadh appear at first glance very similar to humans. However, there are some subtle physical differences that distinguish them from other humanoid races. Their eyes are completely solid color with no whites and are set slightly deeper in their heads, allowing them to better withstand the glare of the desert sun. Their eyelashes are noticeably longer and thicker than other races, helping them keep dust from their eyes. They are also markedly thinner than non- Gunchadh owning to lower water content in their bodies, often appearing emaciated. Like elves, they have no facial or body hair and dark skin (though not as dark as people from central and southern Africa). Gunchadh prefer loose clothing and always wear scarves over their faces and broad-brimmed hats or hooded cloaks to shade their faces.
    Relations – Gunchadh do not have much contact with other races outside of trade and war. They live in inhospitable areas and only trade when necessary. However, they are only openly hostile towards evil races, such as orcs and goblins and they are tolerant of the other major non-evil races.
    Alignment – Gunchadh are primarily neutral with a tendency toward chaos and good. However, survival necessities have placed getting along with those around them above strict adherence to any alignment in Gunchadh priorities, thus their tendency toward neutrality. They value freedom and the good of others, only because they need to work together to survive.
    Gunchadh Lands – Gunchadh live in the deep desert in cliff communities far from centers of civilization. They grow what crops can survive in fissures in the rocks near their homes and hunt desert animals. All of their water is gained from windtraps and from recycling the water of their dead (which they view as a very solemn ritual). In human lands, Gunchadh are either traders or adventurers sent by their tribe to accomplish some task. They also occasionally come to the defense of larger political units, but only rarely. Finally, some Gunchadh grow discontented with their meager existence and come to human lands seeking wealth and comfort.
    Religion – Gunchadh worship Yogyatadevi, their goddess of the desert. They may also revere Raksharia, the god of the preservation Process, but primarily revere Yogyatadevi.
    Language – Gunchadh speak common in public, but within their communities they use their native tongue, Baalubhasha (sand language). Few outside of Gunchadh communities can speak Baalubhasha.
    Names – No one knows the naming tendencies of Gunchadh, since they only use affected names when traveling abroad, and no one but fellow tribesmen is allowed to hear their true names. Thus, Gunchadh characters can take any name.
    Adventures – Gunchadh most commonly adventure on assignment from their tribe. However, a rare few may be disenchanted with Gunchadh life and adventure for personal gain, aiming to retire wealthy and be able to swim in a pool of water (a common Gunchadh dream). Still others adventure to help larger political units, but this too is rare. Also, the value that Gunchadh place on freedom might lead them to adventure merely because they have a cause they believe in.
    Gunchadh Racial Traits
    • +2 Dexterity, -2 Charisma – Gunchadh are athletic and lithe, but their rustic and isolated culture leaves them at a loss when dealing with outsiders.
    • -1 HP at every level – The lack of water in their body makes Gunchadh slightly more vulnerable to wounds than other races.
    • Medium: As Medium creatures, Gunchadh have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
    • Gunchadh base speed is 40 ft, reflecting their semi-nomadic lifestyles. Also, Gunchadh characters gain Sandskimmer as a bonus feat at first level.
    • Low light vision – Gunchadh work mostly at night and their eyes are accustomed to low-light conditions. They can see twice as far as humans under low-light conditions (see Player’s Handbook).
    • Weapon Proficiency – Gunchadh automatically gain Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for scimitar and kukri at 1st level.
    • Desert Acclimatization – Gunchadh characters automatically gain Heat Endurance at first level, even if they don’t meet the prerequisites
    • Racial Skills – Gunchadh always include Survival, Handle Animal, and Ride on their class skill lists. Gunchadh also gain a +2 racial bonus on Ride checks dealing with animals native to desert terrain.
    • Languages – Common and Baalubhasha. Bonus Languages: any.
    • Worm Riding – Upon reaching 5th level in any class, a Gunchadh automatically gains Worm Riding as a bonus feat.
    • Favored Class: Any available. A multiclass Gunchadh’s most advanced class does not count when determining experience penalties for multiclassing. This reflects the necessity of adaptability within Gunchadh society

    Worm Riding is a feat I have yet to write up. However, the basics of it is that it allows anyone who takes it to control a huge, docile desert worm (which I also have yet to write up). My intention is to make it close to useless in combat but useful for those long excursions across the ergs. The whole party could ride on a worm until it tires out (much like the fremen do in Dune). Let me know what you think!
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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    Worm-riding? sandskimmer? what do those feats do?

    this seems an AWFUL lot like the Fremen...SHWEET! ;D

    but...40ft? do not most races only get 30? if they are only semi-nomadic, i could see a slight speed increase...but a DOUBLE slight increase...seems rather too much for people such as these. (i love the concept, btw. dune rox my sox)
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    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    I do like it, but I don't agree with the HPOB's take on the 40ft speed, as it is countered by the +1 LA, and the -1 to hit points they're given. Combined with the bonus feats, I'd say it is fairly well balanced.

    However, should you not also create rules for the worms? And do you not think if a Gunchadh adventures for a long time outside of desert climes, or drinks a lot of water, they should lose that penealty. Also, should they not also gain some benefit to surviving without water based on that?
    ~ Cap'n Alex

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Mephibosheth's Avatar

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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    As I said in my post, worm riding is a feat that I have yet to write up, but it will allow Gunchadh players to use worms for cross-country travel (not for combat).

    Sandskimmer is a feat from the Sandstorm book that reduces the penalties for movement on sand of varying depths. The book establishes various grades of impeded movement based on the depth of sand, and I believe sandskimmer allows the character to treat the sand as one grade shallower. However, I don't have the book with me at the moment, so I could be wrong. That's the general idea, though.

    You're probably right about the speed thing though. Perhaps if I had it increase with hit dice? Maybe +5 ft at 1 HD and an additional +5 at 10 HD?
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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    i like the scaled increase in speed, dude. and why no combat worms? smaller versions of their larger brethren? then they could be riding creatures. Like a WarWorm.
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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    Chimera

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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    As you wrote them I don't think they really need a level adjustment I think the most overpowered thing was the no real favored class bit which I address below.

    I don't know what sand skimming is, but if its a sort of ability where they take no or reduced penalties for moving across sandy/muddy terrain and/or do not require as much water consumption in a day of desert travel, I'd drop the heightened movement rate or have it only apply in their native terrain. It's kind of redundant to have both in my opinion.

    I would tweak Desert Acclimation slightly to include endurance to cold. Deserts can actually get very cold (particularly at night) as well. (Read up on the Gobi Desert for an idea of temperature extremes dropping to below freezing even in July.)

    In addition to Survival being counted as a class skill by the race I would give them 1 rank in the skill.

    I would make Ranger their Favored Class since they are survival oriented and tend to be loners, working with others out of necessity not preference. Their racial traits and bonuses are reflective of someone with a survival mentality not adapters. Their cultural and racial traits they have which enabled them to thrive in a desert clime wouldn't help them to adapt to a temperate forest or mountainous region. The charisma penalty which is cited as an indicator of an inability/unwillingness to work with outsiders does not indicate a culture that quickly and easily adapts to change.

    You mention that they interact with other races for trade. What do they have to offer of value to other cultures in this realm?
    Skins/meat of rare desert animals?
    Do they produce a semi-unique pottery or craft of artistic value? (Glass-blowing comes to my immediate mind.)
    Do they grow, mine, or harvest a relatively unique herb, cattle or mineral that other cultures can't find or properly cultivate?


    -- Millikin
    "I still say Millikin is a placeholder for someone interesting." -- Valdayana D`Varr

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    Quote Originally Posted by The High Priest of Banjo
    Worm-riding? sandskimmer? what do those feats do?

    this seems an AWFUL lot like the Fremen...SHWEET! ;D

    but...40ft? do not most races only get 30? if they are only semi-nomadic, i could see a slight speed increase...but a DOUBLE slight increase...seems rather too much for people such as these. (i love the concept, btw. dune rox my sox)
    The Freemen, yes. Or the Aiel. I like it.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Mephibosheth's Avatar

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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    OK, here we go…

    The Ooze

    Ideally, I’d like them to be balanced with the core races (i.e. NO level adjustment). I think that’s the impetus behind the scaled speed increase. Also, the -1 HP/level is a counterbalance to the speed increase (essentially, I gave them the trait “Quick” from Unearthed Arcana). Maybe now that I’m scaling the speed to their hit dice, I should reduce the HP penalty (-1 HP/2 levels?).

    My explanation for the -1 HP thing isn’t necessarily that they don’t drink enough water, but that the absence of water in their culture has caused them, over time, to evolve naturally more emaciated body types. Additionally, any loss of your body’s water is devastating when you’re adapted to a scarcity of fluids.

    Finally, I think that I will allow them to survive with ¾ the required daily amount of water to avoid dehydration. If coupled with special gear (stillsuits?), that should account for their ability to survive in the deep desert.

    HPOB

    If I gave the Gunchadh the ability to ride a ferocious, huge worm at 5th level, they would definitely be overpowered. Remember, I’m striving to make this a +0 LA race. I wanted something that would capture the flavor of the Fremen and their ability to ride worms, but wouldn’t allow the Gunchadh to simply have their huge worms swallow all BBEGs whole. Additionally, there’s a prestige class from Sandstorm, ashworm dragoon, that allows a character to ride a ferocious, poisonous worm in battle. I think that I’ll restrict that PrC to Gunchadh in my campaign, so they can have some “WarWorms.” Hmm… imagine a Gunchadh army/raiding force riding up on a huge, docile worm with smaller aggressive worms cavalry in the vanguard…

    Millikin

    I can’t post the text of the Sandskimmer feat (not open game content), but as I said above, it reduces the penalties for moving on sand. I wanted to create a race that relies on both mobility and familiarity with a specific terrain to survive, and increases in speed seem wasted if you’re always bogged down in deep sand. For this reason, I don’t think that the two abilities are redundant.

    I agree that it would seem appropriate to have some cold resistance as well, but that would give them yet another feat, which would unbalance them as a +0 LA race.

    Now that you mention it, they probably should have a favored class. I think that I’ll give them Ranger or Scout as favored classes.

    Finally, this world is in its beginning stages right now, and I haven’t totally flushed out the cultures. However, sticking with the Fremen mold, the Gunchadh will likely have some unique resource that they hold a monopoly over.

    I think that addresses just about everything. I’ll post my updates in my next post.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Mephibosheth's Avatar

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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    New Race – Gunchadh (desert rider)
    The Gunchadh are a nomadic tribal humanoid race that live in the deep desert. Very little is known about their habits and lifestyles, except that they are skilled warriors and raiders and they lead exceedingly tough lives.
    Personality – The Gunchadh tend to be reserved and wary around outsiders. They regard anyone who isn’t from their tribe as a possible threat to their way of life. They regard non-Gunchadh with even more suspicion than they do members of other Gunchadh tribes. However, if you win their trust, they are exceedingly loyal companions. Additionally, they value competence above all other attributes. The highest form of praise among the Gunchadh is “your plan worked” and similar, understated compliments. Finally, Gunchadh place the good of the tribe (or whatever group they’re loyal to) above all personal considerations, a trait they developed out of generations of survival in the deep desert.
    Physical Description – Gunchadh appear at first glance very similar to humans. However, there are some subtle physical differences that distinguish them from other humanoid races. Their eyes are completely solid color with no whites and are set slightly deeper in their heads, allowing them to better withstand the glare of the desert sun. Their eyelashes are noticeably longer and thicker than other races, helping them keep dust from their eyes. They are also markedly thinner than non- Gunchadh owning to lower water content in their bodies, often appearing emaciated. Like elves, they have no facial or body hair and dark skin (though not as dark as people from central and southern Africa). Gunchadh prefer loose clothing and always wear scarves over their faces and broad-brimmed hats or hooded cloaks to shade their faces.
    Relations – Gunchadh do not have much contact with other races outside of trade and war. They live in inhospitable areas and only trade when necessary. However, they are only openly hostile towards evil races, such as orcs and goblins and they are tolerant of the other major non-evil races.
    Alignment – Gunchadh are primarily neutral with a tendency toward chaos and good. However, survival necessities have placed getting along with those around them above strict adherence to any alignment in Gunchadh priorities, thus their tendency toward neutrality. They value freedom and the good of others, only because they need to work together to survive.
    Gunchadh Lands – Gunchadh live in the deep desert in cliff communities far from centers of civilization. They grow what crops can survive in fissures in the rocks near their homes and hunt desert animals. All of their water is gained from windtraps and from recycling the water of their dead (which they view as a very solemn ritual). In human lands, Gunchadh are either traders or adventurers sent by their tribe to accomplish some task. They also occasionally come to the defense of larger political units, but only rarely. Finally, some Gunchadh grow discontented with their meager existence and come to human lands seeking wealth and comfort.
    Religion – Gunchadh worship Yogyatadevi, their goddess of the desert. They may also revere Raksharia, the god of the preservation Process, but primarily revere Yogyatadevi.
    Language – Gunchadh speak common in public, but within their communities they use their native tongue, Baalubhasha (sand language). Few outside of Gunchadh communities can speak Baalubhasha.
    Names – No one knows the naming tendencies of Gunchadh, since they only use affected names when traveling abroad, and no one but fellow tribesmen is allowed to hear their true names. Thus, Gunchadh characters can take any name.
    Adventures – Gūnchadh most commonly adventure on assignment from their tribe. However, a rare few may be disenchanted with Gunchadh life and adventure for personal gain, aiming to retire wealthy and be able to swim in a pool of water (a common Gunchadh dream). Still others adventure to help larger political units, but this too is rare. Also, the value that Gunchadh place on freedom might lead them to adventure merely because they have a cause they believe in.
    Gunchadh Racial Traits
    • +2 Dexterity, -2 Charisma – Gunchadh are athletic and lithe, but their rustic and isolated culture leaves them at a loss when dealing with outsiders.
    • -1 HP at every 2 levels – The lack of water in their body makes Gunchadh slightly more vulnerable to wounds than other races.
    • Medium: As Medium creatures, Gunchadh have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
    • Gunchadh base speed is 35 ft at first level and increases to 40 ft at 10th level, reflecting their semi-nomadic lifestyles. Also, Gunchadh characters gain Sandskimmer as a bonus feat at first level.
    • Weapon Proficiency – Gunchadh automatically gain Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for scimitar and kukri at 1st level.
    • Desert Acclimatization – Gunchadh characters automatically gain Heat Endurance at first level, even if they don’t meet the prerequisites. Also, a Gunchadh character needs ¾ the normal daily amount of water to avoid dehydration. Finally, Gunchadh gain a +2 racial bonus on saves to resist the blinding effects associated with the desert sun and to resist the chill of the desert nights.
    • Racial Skills – Gunchadh always include Survival, Handle Animal, and Ride on their class skill lists. Gunchadh also gain a +2 racial bonus on Ride checks dealing with all worms native to desert terrain.
    • Languages – Common and Baalubhasha. Bonus Languages: any.
    • Worm Riding – Upon reaching 5th level in any class, a Gunchadh automatically gains Worm Riding as a bonus feat.
    • Favored Class: Ranger or Scout
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Mephibosheth's Avatar

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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    Due to advice from the WotC forum, I have made the following modifications. What do you think?

    <Flavor text, racial description, etc. don't change>

    Gūnchadh Racial Traits
    • +2 Dexterity, +2 Constitution – Gunchadh are athletic and lithe, and their harsh homelands make them slightly tougher than normal.
    • Medium: As Medium creatures, Gunchadh have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
    • Gunchadh base speed is 40 ft, reflecting their semi-nomadic lifestyles. Also, Gunchadh characters gain Sandskimmer as a bonus feat at first level.
    • Weapon Proficiency – Gunchadh automatically gain Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for scimitar and kukri at 1st level.
    • Desert Acclimatization – Gunchadh characters automatically gain Heat Endurance at first level, even if they don’t meet the prerequisites. Also, a Gunchadh character needs ½ the normal daily amount of water to avoid dehydration. Finally, Gunchadh gain a +2 racial bonus on saves to resist the blinding effects associated with the desert sun and to resist the chill of the desert nights.
    • Skills – Gunchadh have a +2 racial bonus on all handle animal, ride, and survival checks. Also, Gunchadh characters suffer a penalty of -4 to all charisma-based skill checks when dealing with non- Gunchadh
    • Languages – Common and Baalubhasha. Bonus Languages: any.
    • Favored Class: Scout. A Gunchadh characters scout levels do not count when determining XP penalties for multiclassing
    • Level Adjustment: +1

    Essentially, I've given up on making them +0 LA and still building them the way I originally envisioned. I've also give up on the worm riding as a free racial feat, although I think that I'll still craft the feat and the monster and make it a Gunchadh-only feat. Let me know what you think of this as far as balance is concerned.
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    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    This latest version is not worth LA+1 imo. Personally I'd go with something like:
    • +2 dex, -2 cha
    • -1 HP / HD (to a min of 1)
    • Base speed 30' and it increases 5' at character level 4 (35') and character level 8 (40').
    • Low Light Vision
    • Type: Humanoid
    • Weapon Proficiency – Gunchadh automatically gain Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for scimitar and kukri at 1st level.
    • Desert Acclimatization – Gunchadh characters automatically gain Heat Endurance at first level, even if they don’t meet the prerequisites. Also, a Gunchadh character needs 1/2 the normal daily amount of water to avoid dehydration. Finally, Gunchadh gain a +2 racial bonus on saves to resist the blinding effects associated with the desert sun and to resist the chill of the desert nights.
    • Racial Skills – Gunchadh select one of the following skills to always be treated as class skill: Survival, Handle Animal, or Ride. This choice is made at 1st level and cannot be changed afterwards.
    • Medium: As Medium creatures, Gunchadh have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
    • Worm Riding – Upon reaching character level 5, a Gunchadh automatically gains Worm Riding as a bonus feat.
    • Favored Class: Ranger or Scout

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    Just a very non well organized or done test worm.

    Battle Worm
    Large Magical Beast
    Hit Dice-2D10+4
    Speed- 40 ft, 30 ft burrow
    AC-17
    BAB-+2
    (The Battle Worm can only make Bull Rush attacks and full attacks)
    Full Attack-(+5 to hit) 3D6 Slam Attack, Swallow Whole Small Opponents- DC 15 Reflex Save
    STR-18 (+4)
    DEX-8 (-1)
    CON-14 (+2)
    INT-8 (-1)
    WIS-10 (+0)
    CHA-6 (-2)
    Saving Throws
    Fort-+4
    Reflex-+0
    Will-+2
    Feats-Improved Natural Armor
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    Banned
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    Did the Fremen use 'magic'? I thought they were somewhat superstitious towards it, and almost killed Paul and his mother for it. Could be misremembering.

    Perhaps worm -riding should be gained at 5th level, but the riders would be unable to handle the animals in battle. Any attempt at such would result in something bad/unpredictable/failure. At 10th level, they can handle worms in battle. Perhaps have the size of the worm they can handle proportional to the Fremen's HD.

    Swim should not be a class skill. They should hav eno ability to swim, unless they have actually swum, and then get to use it as a cross-class skill. They are, after all, desert nomads.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: new race submitted for your review

    they used a sort of druid like magic. the magic they were rather against was dark, dangerous magic, was it not?
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