Thursday, August 22, 2013

New-school race as classes 2: The Warforged

This will probably be a three-part series, with the last part being a tiefling. I mean I know last time I said the ruinguard from ACKS, but... I dunno, I have some thoughts about de-ACKS-izing it at the least. (I like ACKS but I dunno, I'm having fun here.) Those three are my favorites.


Art by Gabe
Prime requisite: STR
Requirements: STR 9
Hit Dice: 1d8
Attack as: Fighter
Save as: Dwarf
Advance as: Dwarf
Maximum level: 10

Warforged are artificially-constructed beings made of a wooden, leather, and metal frame covered in armor-like steel plates, brought to life by means of magical and alchemical processes. They were created for a war that has since been consigned to history, and in the intervening years the secret of their creation has been lost. Despite their artificial appearances, warforged are self-aware and are often surprisingly "human" in their outlook. With the war they were built to fight gone, many turn to adventuring in hopes of finding a new purpose in life. Apart from the color of their eyes and a serial rune on the crown of their heads, all warforged look essentially alike to human eyes, though some paint identifying markings upon themselves. A warforged stands six feet tall and weighs 275 pounds. Although their bulky, somewhat angular appearance suggests masculinity to human eyes, most warforged are not strongly concerned with gender (though they have no problem going along with whatever gender others are comfortable assigning them).

Restrictions: Warforged use 8-sided dice (d8) to determine their hit points. They may advance to a maximum of the 10th level of experience. Warforged may use any type of weapon, and may use shields. Because they are already covered in armor-like plates of metal, any armor they wear must be specially-fitted and costs twice as much. Because of their wooden-and-metal construction, magical effects involving metal or wood affect them*. Warforged characters do not heal on their own and receive only half the normal effect of healing magic, but they can be repaired by any skilled armorer with access to a forge with one hour of work per point of damage suffered. A Warforged character must have a minimum Strength of 9.

Special Abilities: Warforged are covered in sturdy metal plating that grants them a -2(+2) bonus to their armor class. Although they have souls and are alive, warforged are immune to the effects of fatigue, disease, and poison, and have no need to eat, drink, sleep, or breathe (however poison gas such as the breath weapons of green dragons is still dangerous to them because it is corrosive to their organic components). Warforged do, however, have minds and souls and can thus be charmed, held, or raised from the dead like any other person.

AC: 4 (15)
HD: 1+1
Move: 120' (40')
Attacks: 1 weapon
Damage: 1d8 or by weapon 
# Appearing: 1d6 (2d10)
Save as: F1
Morale: 8
Treasure Type: B
Alignment: Neutral

Warforged are artificial people made primarily of leather, wood, and steel. They are immune to poison, disease, and sleep effects. If a group of 15 or more Warforged appear, one will be a leader of level 3-8 (1d6+2). To check for magic items the leader may own, multiply the leader's level by 5. The result is the percentage chance for that leader to have a magic item from any subtable except the Scroll and Wand/Staff/Rod subtables**. So long as the leader is alive, morale is 10 instead of 8.

*For instance, a rust monster may use their feelers to consume a warforged's plating and other metal components, dealing 2d6 damage per round and negating their armor bonus***. If you use Rules Cyclopedia-style Druids in your campaign, they always count as holding a metal object for purposes of Heat Metal, Turn Wood repels them on a failed save, and Metal to Wood reduces their AC bonus by 1***. Warp Wood only affects objects, and thus does not affect Warforged.

**If the leader would otherwise wear magical armor, then their plating is enchanted instead. A warforged may remove such plating in order to use it for theirself***.

***New plating costs as much as plate armor. A warforged may replace their plating in an hour with the help of a skilled armorer with access to a forge.

UPDATE: Edited for clarity


Anonymous said...

This is actually the first I've read about the Warforged and I'm a little confused. Are they expected to wear armor over top of their metal plating or do they get it installed or...

And you're looking for criticism right? I think the level of the leaders for Warforged and Dragonborn are extremely high. I don't think the leader levels get anywhere near that high in 1e or LL. I'd do a double take if I saw one higher than 4th.

Rachel Ghoul said...

Generally they're expected to not wear armor over their plating, but i figure there's no reason that they absolutely could never fit into it ever, they'd just have to have it built to fit them.

Per Moldvay, the leaders of Elf and Dwarf groups have leaders of level 1d6+1 and 1d6+2, respectvely. Dragonborn might be a little high, but Warforged are right in that same range.

Nick Kessler said...

Hey Rachel, all of these races are great! Can you supply a pdf for the 'forged and Tiefling when you get a chance? My printer isn't printing from your blog very well. Thanks.

Rachel Ghoul said...

Oh! Sure thing, Nick, sorry. I wanted to wait on these two though just to make sure everyone feels they're ready for primetime and there's no glaring problems.