Character Races in Anach Korin
This campaign is set around the Korin, the human race that populates the area of the same name. If there are other human races, you are unaware of them. To you, the world, or at least the world excluding monsters, consists almost exclusively of Korin.
As such, humans are the primary player race and will constitute most, if not all, of the friendlies you will meet. There are exceptions to this rule, of course, and they are described below.
That said, to keep things interesting and to support the story and history of the world at hand, I am introducing the concept of race variants. Human variants are other races, with their traits and powers intact, that are played as human; they look human, they act (mostly) human, and are for all intents Korin.
One note before I continue. All Korin have at least three tattoos. The first is a symbol representing their true, hidden name. This tattoo is usually centered on the navel and is considered private. The second is a symbol of their Menohr-Wen (family). And the third, and perhaps most sacred to a Korin, is the symbol of their Tahl (their kinship group).
To be born a Deva is to be exulted. Most Deva’s are only legend. The Korin are primarily ancestor worshipers, and their dead are said to join the Ar-Tahl (the great spirit or construct of souls of a Tahl’s ancestors). So stories tell of the Ar-Tahl sending forth one of the Tahl’s ancestors to provide aid and guidance in times of great trouble. You are that ancestor.
Born bathed in a radiant light, you are the epiphany of a Korin
- tall, dark skinned, well-muscled, and extremely attractive. Your eyes are unusual though, for unlike most Korin who have brown or green eyes, yours are blue - bright blue. So to is your hair, for it is red as autumn leaves. Your family tattoo is not from recent memory, though your Tahl tattoo is as expected. Where a name tattoo should be is only a black, odd shape. It means nothing that anyone can determine. You have grown quickly since birth, and though only a year old, you are now almost fully grown.
You are, indeed, a returned ancestor. But, to yours and others dismay, that is all you recall—no special messages, no insights from the past. You are both sign of hope and a harbinger of doom. Nonetheless, the rest of your Tahl treat you with reverence.
You have all of the traits and powers of a Deva.
You are not born as such, but made. At a very young age, the members of your Menohr-Wen are put through a sacred and secretive ritual. You are carried to a dolmen hidden within the Beyahl-Gil (Beyahl Valley). Upon this dolmen, resplendent with carved runes, you are bathed in the blood of the adult members of your Menohr-Wen while powerful magics course from the stone through your body. At its culmination, a tattoo of a coiled dragon is branded about your navel. For many, this is all that the ritual accomplishes—that and providing a lasting bond with those of your Menohr-Wen. For you and for a few storied others throughout your family’s history, however, the ritual works as legend would have it.
Your dragon tattoo is a real bond to a dragon, or perhaps the spirit of one. When looked at closely, the tattoo appears alive, almost moving. To those outside of your Menohr-Wen, the tattoo is simply stunning to behold. To those who know, it marks you as having the much coveted traits and powers of a Dragonborn.
While no one in living memory has ever seen a Child of Moril, known simply as the Morin (Dwarves), your stature may make some jump to conclusions based on the legends alone. You are, of course, not Morin—not even the tiniest bit of their blood runs through your veins. Nonetheless, you are very, very short for a Korin (who average six feet in height). You may be teased by your kin and siblings, but you are nevertheless accepted as a Korin and member of your Tahl.
You have the traits and powers of a Dwarf with the exception of Low-light vision.
You are very big, very strong, and very imposing. In short, you are pretty much what is expected of a Korin (though one has to admit that you are, indeed, exceptional in stature). Your appearance is otherwise normal. You have the traits and powers of a Goliath.
Charismatic and slightly slender for a Korin, you are nonetheless human looking in every other way. You have the traits and powers of a Half-Elf with the exception of Low-light vision.
You appear to be Korin in every way, but you are definitely of special stock and are well known for your fighting prowess. You have all of the traits and powers of a Half-Orc with the exception of Low-light vision. You also age as a normal human.
Shifters are definitely born as such. Your Menohr-Wen are all Shifters, and though your kin think you and your family are odd, you are nonetheless part of the Tahl. As far as you know, your family is the only lineage of Shifters—but that doesn’t say much as few have traveled far afield.
You appear normal most of the time and for good reason. Your family has kept your special heritage as secret as possible as none have desired to test the boundaries of acceptance within the Tahl. Under duress, though, you have a hard time keeping your bestial nature and appearance hidden. It is through sheer fortune that none have uncovered your secret.
You have all of the traits and powers of a Shifter.
Whether born or made, it is not known. But nonetheless a shadow has been cast on your spirit and life. Upon your coming of age, you have been taunted by dark visions, not always just in your dreams. Even your family tattoo has changed to your eyes. No one necessarily knows or understands the changes you are experiencing, but they are nonetheless real. Outwardly you are Korin, but inside you know you are different.
You have all of the traits and powers of a Tiefling.
ELADRIN or ELF
If you with to play an Eladrin or an Elf, you are lucky to be alive. You are one of those known to the Korin as Changelings
- children stolen from their parents by the Fey and replaced with an evil, twisted look-alike. Except - you are neither evil or twisted.
It is true that you were switched with your human counterpart at a young age. But unlike any others (not that Changelings are common, mind you) whose curses and mutterings brought them fiery doom at the hands of the Tahl, your beauty and countenance caused your parents to protect you instead. Now even the love of your parents wouldn’t be able to protect a Changeling child from the fears of others in the Tahl. It is only through the graces and magic of the Dru-Ar-Din that you live to this day.
Once a year, on your birthday, you have undergone a magic ritual that cloaks your appearance to all who see you. To them, you look exactly like a normal Korin. Should this magic ever fail, it is unknown how the others of your Tahl would react, but it is likely a reaction you don’t want to experience. This ritual requires a knowledgeable Dru-Ar-Din, but is otherwise free.
Of your different heritage you know very little—just that somewhere there is someone who should be you, and that you don’t seem to be part of this world. You do know that you have traits and powers that others lack and would perhaps envy, and as such are cautious in their application.
You have all of the traits and powers of either an Eladrin or an Elf. You are truly Fey.
To be born a Halfling in Korin is to be born a slave. Halfling families are bonded from time immemorial to a particular Korin Menohr-Wen. Not all Korin have Hafling servitors, though many of the Beyahl-Tahl do, perhaps because of the richness of area.
Whether it is a bad life or not is entirely dependent on the Menohr-Wen to which the Halfling is bonded. For most Korin, Halflings are barely considered at all. So engrained is their position as servitors in the culture that no one even considers the oddity that is this other, distinct race. Still, some Menohr-Wen elevate their Halflings to positions of confidants, advisors, and squires. It is a lucky Halfling indeed that is born into such a family. It should be noted that other Korin respect a Halfling as someone’s property, though that does not make them immune from punishment from the Tahl. A Halfling can be traded or sold, by one or by a whole family. This is often done to keep the bloodlines from going stale. Since Halfling families are matriarchal, it is rare for females of the race to be traded or sold.
You have all of the traits and powers of a Halfling. You have your own language, but it is generally considered forbidden to use around Korin for fear of punishment. You are given both a private, Halfling name (by your parents), and a name used by the Korin. The Korin name is always diminutive (it likely ends in one of the following suffixes ~os, ~or, ~ohl, ~uhl, ~uss, ~uth).
At least Halflings can be seen and heard. You, as a Gnome, must forever remain in the shadows. Your family and clan live in among the shadows of the Korin. You have to; the world at large is far to dangerous to your kind.
Gnome legends are strangely silent as to how you and your kin came to be in this otherwise human world. All they tell is how fortunate you are to be here, and far from where you came. That, apparently, is good enough for most Gnomes.
You have all of the traits and powers of a Gnome, and are indeed Fey.