Thursday, June 24, 2010

On the Beastmen of Nabu - Part Two

Two more beastmen for your enjoyment. Part One, detailing the cat and lion people, is here.

Kawa (Fox People)
The kawa are mostly known as highwaymen and thieves. They wander the River of Death in bands that are like extended families of 10 to 20 individuals, usually under the command (such as it is, for they are a deeply chaotic folk) of the eldest member. The arrival of a band of kawa in a settlement is met with mixed emotions, for while they are known to be thieves, they also bring news and the crafts of their wise women and cunning men to isolated villages.

The kawa are short (4 feet tall, on average) and wiry. They have ruddy skin and platinum blond hair, and eyes they gleam with cunning. They dress in beaded tunics, jaunty leather caps and leather sandals. Belt pouches hold charms and bundles of useful herbs. Kawa warriors carry short, thin swords and long knives, as well as short bows or slings. The kawa are friendly folk, but dishonest and always on the lookout for a sharp deal. They have soprano voices and demoniacal laughs that are deeply unnerving. Kawa often get drunk at night and play tricks, often very cruel ones, on whoever is close at hand.

Racial Characteristics: Kawa are sneaky and cunning. They surprise foes on the roll of 1-2 on 1d6, and because of their acute hearing are only surprised on a roll of 1 on 1d8. Most kawa have a working understanding of herbs and their supernatural and medicinal uses, enough so that their ministrations afford creatures a +1 bonus to save vs. poison and disease. A kawa’s fluid fighting style gives it a +1 bonus to Armor Class.

Ka’wa Racial Class
A ka’wa, despite his reputation, is a useful person to have around on an adventure. Quiet and clever, they make excellent scouts and can help a party of adventurers survive in a hostile wilderness. Moreover, their wandering ways exposes them to useful bits of lore and gossip, including a handful of minor charms. Besides their normal racial abilities, dedicated ka’wa scouts have some minor spellcasting ability and the ability to sneak about and survive in the wilderness.

Prime Requisite: Intelligence (13+ gets +5% bonus to earned experience).
Hit Dice: 1d6+1 (+2 hit points per level after 9th).
Weapons Permitted: Club, dagger, hand axe, javelin, light crossbow, flail, mace, short bow, short sword, sling.
Armor Permitted: Leather and shields.

Herblore: Kawa can spend time each day they spend in the wilderness looking for herbs. There is a 1 in 6 chance each day that they discover a combination of herbs that, with their store of herbal knowledge, can be used to brew a tea that acts as a potion. Roll the type of potion randomly, using the minor potions chart in the core rulebook.

Move Silently: When concentrating and not carrying particularly noisy objects, ka’wa can move about without making any sound. A kawa moving silently and scouting ahead of a party can avoid an encounter entirely if his opponents are surprised.

Perception: A kawa successfully listens at doors and finds secret doors and hidden traps as well as elves (2 in 6 and 4 in 6 chance respectively), and can find pits and traps as well as a dwarf (1 in 6 chance of just noticing, 3 in 6 chance if searching).

Spells: At level 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12, a kawa learns to cast a level 1 magic-user spell. They can cast each spell they know once per day. The kawa’s player can choose to learn a spell known by a magic-using comrade or roll randomly for the spell he learns.

Qamouli (Camel People)
The qamouli are tall, lanky folk often standing over 7 feet in height. They have long arms and a stride that, while loping and ungainly, makes them quite fast. Qamouli have tan skin and curly, golden or reddish hair. They decorate their faces with jewelry, but otherwise dress in simple saffron robes. They cover their misshapen heads, which give them no end of embarrassment, with brightly colored turbans and scarves. Warriors wear ring mail over their robes and carry long spears, sickle-shaped swords (treat as battle axes) and slings. They are obsessive about collecting holy symbols of all kinds of gods and goddesses – major, minor or forgotten, good, evil or otherwise. A qamouli never speaks ill of a divinity, no matter how ancient, unknown or foul.

The qamouli are desert traders. They have thick pads on their feet that protect them scorpion stings and the heat of the desert sands, and so never wear shoes. They roam in bands of 15 to 30 individuals, their long strides and amazing endurance carrying them swiftly across the sands from one village to another.

Racial Characteristics: Qamouli are generally not bothered by heat and cold, though they do suffer normal damage from fire and cold attacks. They need only half as much food and water as normal humans, and are usually (75%) capable of finding food and water in any environment. A qamouli can carry 1.5 times as much weight as a normal human. They have a base movement of 15, but their clumsiness gives them a -1 penalty to Armor Class.

Qamouli Racial Class
Qamouli are natural explorers and adventurers. They like to stay on the move, and always have an eye open for items of value. Besides their racial characteristics, qamouli also know how to protect themselves from wild animals and wicked spirits.

Prime Requisite: Constitution (13+ gets +5% bonus to earned experience).
Hit Dice: 1d6+2 (+3 hit points per level after 9th).
Weapons Permitted: Any.
Armor Permitted: Leather, ring and chainmail and shields.

Desert Songs: The qamouli are especially superstitious, and learn from a young age the secrets of warding away bad luck (+2 bonus to save vs. curses). They also learn ancient songs that keep away dangerous animals and wicked spirits. These songs are sung in a nasally baritone and, in fact, are fairly useful for keeping anything with hearing at bay. In play, these songs act as a cleric’s “turn undead” check, but can be used against normal animals and the undead.

Languages: Qamouli characters are allowed to know 2 bonus languages above and beyond what is allowed by their intelligence score.

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