Welcome back to the weekly D&D and Tabletop Gaming thread! Here’s a place where we can talk about Dungeons & Dragons or any other tabletop games that you nerds might be into. Tell us about the games you’re playing, speculate about future expansions, recruit your fellow Avocados into new groups, whatever you want.
A while back, I talked about some of the “evil” playable races from Volo’s Guide to Monsters. But that was only half of the playable races released in that book. There are a half-dozen more that tend toward the neutral or good rows of the old alignment chart.
First, there’s the Aasimar, a race of humans descended from celestial beings–basically, Aasimar are analogous to Tieflings, but for celestials instead of fiends. All Aasimar have darkvision and are resistant to necrotic and radiant damage. They can use the Light cantrip and have a limited healing touch. Aasimar have an innate CHA bonus, and there are 3 subraces that each grant a different small increase to one stat as well as an ability at level 3. Fallen Aasimar get a STR bonus and can turn their eyes black and sprout skeletal flightless wings, causing creatures nearby to become frightened. Protector Aasimar get a WIS bonus, and can also sprout radiant wings that grant them the ability to fly for a short time. Finally, Scourge Aasimar get a bonus to CON, and can emit searing light from their eyes and mouth, dealing radiant to damage to all creatures nearby, including themselves. Aasimar stat bonuses make them especially good for the Paladin class.
Firbolg are forest guardians that remind me a bit of the Ogier from Wheel of Time. They’re large and strong, but generally peaceful. They’re innately magical, with the ability to cast Detect Magic and Disguise Self, as well as become invisible for a short time. Since they’re at home in nature, they can communicate with animals and plants in a limited fashion. Firbolg characters have increased WIS and STR scores, and tend to become Druids, Rangers, or Fighters.
Like the Aarakocra, Kenku are a bird-like race, resembling ravens or crows. However, unlike the Aarakocra, the Kenku have no wings, having been cursed in ancient times, and thus cannot fly. They also cannot speak, except in mimicry, repeating sounds that they’ve heard from others. They can perfectly imitate any voice, or any other sound they hear, from a falling rock to a ringing bell. This talent also extends to duplicating others’ writing or craftwork, allowing them to produce duplicates or forgeries with ease. Kenku have increased DEX and WIS scores, and make good Rogues, Rangers, or Monks.
Next up, the Lizardfolk, which are pretty much what they sound like, humanoid lizards. They’re more animalistic that most other PC races, and lack complex emotions. They’re natural swimmers and can hold their breath for up to 15 minutes at at time. Lizardfolks’ scales give them some natural armor, and they can make a special bite attack that siphons some of the target’s life force. They’re also deft artisans, especially using materials salvaged from slain foes–they can make weapons, shields, or ammunition from the bones or hides from dead creatures. Lizardfolk get stat increases to CON and WIS, making them ideal Barbarians and Rangers.
The cat-like Tabaxi are driven by curiosity more than anything else. They’re naturally perceptive and stealthy, and can use their claws as weapons or to climb walls. Their feline agility lets them move at double speed in short bursts, and they can see in the dark. Tabaxi gain bonuses to DEX and CHA, making them ideal for Rogues, Monks, and Bards.
Last, but not least is the sea-dwelling Triton race. Tritons guard the ocean floors from invasion of beings from the Elemental Plane of Water. Having adapted to an underwater environment, Tritons can breath both air and water and are resistant to cold. They can also communicate in a limited fashion with animals that live underwater, and their elemental nature gives them the ability to cast spells like Fog Cloud, Gust of Wind, and Wall of Water. Tritons gain stat bonuses to STR, CON, and CHA, making them good Paladins, Fighters, or melee-focused Warlocks.
Have you ever played as one of these races, and if so, what did you think? Is your campaign world big enough to include all of these peoples, in addition to the races from the core rule books? Are there any that you just don’t like?
Our AvocaD&D group is playing through the Curse of Strahd adventure module. Our version takes place in a pseudo-historical 19th century Earth, and the group is playing as representatives of a railroad company sent to the tiny Eastern European nation of Barovia (ruled by Count Strahd von Zarovich) to negotiate the expansion of the railway through the country.
Our Dungeon Master is The Hayes Code, and the party consists of:
- Txan Einreique, a Half-Elf Stone Sorcerer; the Company Representative and nominal party leader (Josephus Brown)
- Kissi Farwood, a Human Fighter; a former solider hired as a bodyguard by Txan (forget_it_jake)
- ENGR-23, a Warforged Artificer; a living machine employed as a railway engineer (our only non-Avocado party member)
- Peter Peregrine, a Human Barbarian; a Professor of Antiquities with a rage-filled alter ego called Kragen Tempest (The Wasp)
- Wickerwelt Tanglewood, a Halfling Ranger/Rogue; a Barovian native brought along as a guide (TheCleverGuy)
- Carabelle Longstride, a Halfling Cleric of Lathander; a Southern-accented American on a personal mission of her own (Wafflicious)
No game this week, unfortunately. Real life got in the way for a few of us, so we decided to take the week off. Tune in next week to see whether or not we all die in the Amber Temple!