Friday, July 09, 2010

Wildman houserules

I've blogged before about how I really like the concept of shifters (from Eberron) and other "wildmen" archetypes. And while the rules for shifters work quite well, they have two problems in being adapted to my homebrew. 1) They're not open content, and 2) They're a bit too long, complex and involved for easy retyping and representing anyway.

So, I decided to create some new rules for shifters. Since my setting doesn't have half-orcs, I decided to use the half-orc stats as a baseline, and then modify from there. Thanks to "The Orc Within" (from ENWorld) for the baseline concept and the text of the Feral Form special ability. Now, the half-orc racial stats were frequently criticized as being too harsh, especially the ability adjustments, where a +2 to Strength was frequently not judged equivalent to a -2 to both Intelligence and Charisma. The design notes on the half-orc purported that since Strength makes them better at combat, and combat is so important to the game, that it was balanced despite the obvious... well, imbalance. That, of course, depends on the game.

I've played many half-orcs in my day (in fact, I am doing so currently), but I don't particularly like the stat block for them.

Anyway, here's the entire ruleset for my vucari, or wildmen. Obviously based on the same idea as shifters. I've used D&D linguistics, just for completion; I, of course, use a completely different linguistics rule for my homebrew.

Wildman (Vucari)
• +2 Str, -2 Int
Lowlight vision
• Survival is always a class skill for wildmen, regardless of what class they actually take.
• Wildmen gain the Scent ability
• Feral Form (Su) - Once per day a wildman can take on brutish form that lasts a number of rounds equal to 3 + the character's Constitution modifer, granting him +2 Str, +2 Dex, +10 ft land speed, and two claw attacks (1d4 +1/5HD damage). The character may use manufactured weapons while in his Feral Form, if desired. While in his Feral Form, a wildman also gains the benefit of the Pounce ability. This benefit only lasts while in the Feral Form, however. The wildman gains one additional use per day of his Feral Nature at every 5th character level he attains.
• Automatic languages: Sylvan
• Bonus languages: Common, Elven, Goblin, Orc

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