Friday, September 29, 2017

Campaign Design - Bloodlines: Lycanthrope-Blooded

(adapted from Unearthed Arcana)

Common folklore holds that the khülen were created by the alvar, who sought to devise a race of soldiers to serve in their armies by breeding lycanthropes with humans. Whether this is true or not, it is certain that khülen have lycanthrope blood running through their veins. Just as changelings living and intermixing with other races injected doppelganger heritage into the populations around them, lycanthropes living among non-lycanthropes has done the same for lycanthrope heritage. Of course, due to their shapeshifting nature, pure bred lycanthropes are capable of living among others as well, and this is another vector that infuses communities with lycanthropic heritage.

Having a lycanthrope living in one's town or village can be a blessing or a curse. Some lycanthropes such as werewolves and wereats prey upon their neighbors - murdering innocent townsfolk on a whim. Others, such as werebears, often become protectors of their homesteads, using their abilities to drive off dangerous foes who would victimize their friends and neighbors. No matter whether they are hero or villains, the typical lycanthropic character may enjoy an almost entirely normal social life - even having a family. While the offspring of an afflicted lycanthrope might not share the curse itself, the bloodline might still pass its characteristics down the generations, allowing later descendants to display some of the lycanthrope's attributes. Regardless of the original animal stock, the carriers of lycanthropic bloodlines tend to share similar characteristics, including a feral stare and an overabundance of body hair.

Although it only affects one choice in the bloodline itself (the decision between Power Attack and Dodge at 8th level), a lycanthrope-blooded character must determine what strain of lycanthrope they are descended from, as this will affect some of the choices available to that character, including the choice of animal companion they may select should they choose to become an outdoorsman. The known strains of lycanthrope in the Three Worlds are: Werebat, werebear, wereboar, wereconstrictor, werecrocodile, werehyena, werejackal, wereleopard, werelion, greater werelion, werepuma, wererat, wereraven, wereshark, weretiger, greater weretigerwereviper, werevulture, wereweasel, werewolf, greater werewolf, and werewolverine.

The lycanthrope bloodline only provides a minor bloodline. Anyone with an intermediate bloodline would effectively be a khülen, and anyone with a major bloodline would essentially be a lycanthrope.

Lycanthrope Bloodline Traits

Character Level
+2 on Search checks
Power Attack or Dodge1
Constitution +1
Scent (Ex)
Lycanthrope affinity +22
1 If the base animal's Strength is higher than its Dexterity, you gain Power Attack. Otherwise, you gain Dodge.
2 You gain the indicated bonus on all Bluff, Diplomacy, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Perform checks made to interact with lycanthropes or khülen.

Racial Restriction: Khülen cannot be lycanthrope-blooded, because effectively they already are.

Exclusive Class: Lycanthrope-blooded individuals can replace their racial exclusive class with the Outdoorsman class.

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