Every creature has a race. It indicates the species of your character and also may determine or influence the environment and culture that your character grew up in. When choosing your character's race, keep in mind that customs and heritage of the race you choose can impact your character's background and roleplay. Choose a race that sounds interesting, that inspires your imagination, or fits the character concept you have in mind.
Below are descriptions of just a few of the components that are key functions of your character's Race. Race influences many other aspects of your character, including Attributes, Philosophies, Skills, Hitpoints, Resolve & Stamina totals, Weapon proficiencies, and more. These components will be described later, as they require information from multiple aspects of your character before their values can be determined.
Each race has features that make it unique and set it apart from other races. These features can affect every aspect of game play and are very diverse in their benefit. For example, Half-Orcs gain a feature called "Imposing" due to their Orcish appearance, which grants a racial bonus to the Coercion skill. Halflings, on the other hand, are courageous granting them "Halfling Steadfastness," a racial bonus to Saving Throws. And Elves gain the ability "Elven Rest," which lets them enter a trance-like state instead of sleeping, granting a full night's rest in just four hours (instead of six).
If a feature alters a specific statistic (such as defenses, healing value, or all saving throws), these bonuses can usually be placed into the miscellaneous box adjacent to the corresponding statistic. Otherwise, notes on your character's Racial Features may be written in the "Features, Traits, & Languages" section on page two of the character sheet.
Each race grants access to the Mental and Physical philosophies. The Mental Philosophy provides powers which augment a character's mental abilities and skills and grants bonuses to his mental Saving Throws. The Physical Philosophy provides powers which augment a character's physical abilities and skills and grants bonuses to his physical Saving Throws. A strength of certain damaging magical affects can also depend on a character's Mental and Physical rank (i.e. the lower a character's rank, the more strongly the magic will affect him).
A creature’s Senses dictate how it perceives the world around it. Most creatures have some form of visual, auditory, olfactory and tactile senses, as determined by their race. Creatures can have inferior or superior versions of these senses (as a gauge, Humans are considered "normal" in all senses). Some character races have enhanced forms of vision, such as Low-Light Vision (i.e. the ability to see equally well in dim and bright light) or Darkvision (i.e. the ability to see equally well in light and darkness). There are also varying supernatural forms of the senses, seen mostly in more monstrous creatures, that are described in more detail on the Senses reference page.
When you have chosen your character's race, any notes about its senses can be written in the "Senses" area on page one of the character sheet.
Each creature has speed and movement modes characteristic of its race. A creature’s speed is typically broken down into four main movement modes - Overland, Shift, Skirmish, and Sprint (see Movement for more details). Most movement modes are expressed in terms of Distance and Recovery Time, with the distance expressed in Feet and the Recovery Time in Segments (Recovery Time and Segments will be described in greater detail in the How to Play section). Overland speeds, alternatively, are expressed in miles per day.
Most character races will have a shift speed of 5 ft (per 2 segments), a skirmish speed between 25 and 35 feet (per 3 segments), and a sprint speed between 35 and 45 feet (per 3 segments). Overland speed, the distance a creature can move overland in a day, typically ranges between 25 and 35 miles per day. Once you have chosen your Race, identify your characters base speeds from the Race Characteristics box. Record these speeds in the Movement section on page 3 of the character sheet.
Some creatures may have other movement modes in addition to those described above; these are covered under the creature’s racial description. Movement modes and speed can be modified by a creature’s attributes, class, feats, items, powers, etc. Armor can reduce the recovery time of your character's movement (by 1 or 2 segments).
The Size of your character is also determined by his race. A character’s size dictates the amount of space that he occupies, his reach, his Stealth and Grapple abilities, and the distance that he can be pushed. Most player characters are of Small or Medium Size, with effects detailed in the table below. Once you have chosen your race, record your character's size in the Appearance section on page 1 of the character sheet. You can additionally record your Grapple and Stealth modifiers for reference later in this tutorial.
|Effects of Creature Size|
|Space Occupied (diameter area)||Reach||Stealth Modifier||Brawn Modifier||Grapple Modifier||Push Modifier|
|Small||3 ft||3 ft||+4||-4||-4||+5 ft|
|Medium||5 ft2||5 ft||0||0||0||0|
Reach and Threat Range will be discussed in more detail in the How to Play section.
Your character's race will typically determine the Languages that he knows, usually granting a native language (i.e. Dwarven for Dwarves, Gnomish for Gnomes) and Common (the language of Humans and the most common language of merchants and traders). Creatures of high Intelligence can gain additional languages of their choice (more on this later).
As languages vary dependent on ancestry and geographic local, the given list is only a guideline. Many GMs may create campaign specific languages or limit the languages available to your character.