A number of races are available to play. Humans are the default and most obvious choice. You don’t even need to indicate you are human in your high concept aspect; it’s just assumed you are human if nothing else is there to indicate you are of a different race. But if you aren’t playing a human character, your choice in what race to play should be reflected in your high concept aspect.
In Faeln, the following races are available. More can be adapted or created as needed.
- Elf (high elf, lunar elf, or night elf)
If you play a race other than human, all that’s really needed is for that to be indicated in the character’s high concept. However, you could also reflect some of the special things that makes your race unique by purchasing some extras. This typically includes a race skill that has some flavor or special ability added to it, and possibly one or more stunts.
Below you will find entries for the listed races. Aspects listed are typical ones for the race that you could borrow or modify for your own use. The racial skill can be purchased as an extra, of course, and then you select how it works by choosing a flavor. If you want more than one flavor to the skill, then purchase the extra flavor with a stunt.
- 1 Race: Centaur
- 2 Race: Dwarf
- 3 Race: Elf
- 4 Race: Night Elf
- 5 Race: Goblin
- 6 Race: Man
Centaurs are nomadic people that travel in herds. Typically, there are many more mares than stallions among their kind, so it is common for a single stallion to have more than one mare as a mate. They tend to prefer ranged weapons or weapons they can use to take advantage of their excellent reach and size.
Contrary to popular belief, centaurs are not simply a horse with the torso of a humanoid or a humanoid with the body of a horse. They are in fact a special race of shape-shifting humanoids.
One form is that of a wild horse. They typically have short, falling manes and tend to have shoulder stripes. These stripes can be hard to see at times, depending on the coloring of the individual centaur, which often ranges from bay to black. Some centaur tribes sport a pale coat with leopard spotting. They typically range between 56 to 64 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 850 and 1200 pounds. They most often use this form when wandering or traveling.
A centaur’s humanoid form is likewise huge as size and weight are conserved when they shape change. They retain the coat and coloring of their equine form but have two legs that end in hooves instead of feet, and arms that end in hands. They usually have broad, flat noses, and tall, equine ears. They usually use this form when camping or interacting with other humanoids.
Centaurs take hunting down cursed shape shifters, especially lupine ones like werewolves, as a sacred duty. They consider slaying one a tribute for their most favored goddess, Mother Faela.
Defender of the Herd, Suspicious of Outsiders, Most Problems Are Fixed with Strength, Swift-Hooved Runner, Wise Teacher
Racial Skill (Centaur)
You can use the Centaur skill to identify natural features, plants and animals of your homelands as well as to find your away around your home territories. You can also use your Centaur skill to perform feats of strength. Pick one of the following flavors as well; more flavors can be purchased by spending a stunt slot or point of Refresh.
Battle Charge. You can move up to two zones for free and still attack an enemy with your Centaur skill.
Centaur Archery. You can use your Centaur skill to make ranged attacks with a long bow.
Dwarves are rugged people of the hills and mountains. Stocky and short, they are also wide and strong. These physical changes may be adaptations to underground living. They tend to place more value in solid craftsmanship than magical shortcuts.
They have a monotheistic religion and if pressed can be quite aggressive about their beliefs. To a dwarf, it is a direct insult to the power of their one god to insinuate there are others just as important. To a dwarf, creating is all-important and often all-consuming. There can be no greater power and no higher calling than to create something.
Hardy Warrior, Crafts — Not Magic!, Dense Physique, Home Is Underground, Taciturn
Racial Skill (Dwarf)
You can use the Dwarf skill to find your way around underground, identify underground flora and fauna, and notice features built of stone. You may also select one of the following flavors. Pick more if you like at the cost of 1 stunt slot or Refresh each.
Dwarven Craftsmanship. You can use your Dwarf skill in place of Crafts when building or sculpting things of stone or metal.
Stout Warrior. Choose axes or crossbows. When using one of these weapons, you can use your Dwarf skill instead of Fight or Shoot.
Other Available Stunts
Dark Vision. You can see in absolute darkness, but cannot distinguish color in such low lighting. This can bypass modifiers to Notice or Investigate roll where being in the dark is a factor.
Elves comprise of three races. The high elves, more commonly called fair elves due to their pale skin and golden hair, often live in secluded cities hidden deep in the wilderness. They are closely related to the lunar elves, also called silver elves for their typical hair coloring or wood elves for the places in which they live. These elves are frequently found in old woodlands and maintain villages that blend with the natural environment. Night elves are different enough they have their own entry.
Takes the Long View, Magic Is in My Blood, Perfectionist, Centuries of Knowledge, Forest Friend, Proud Defender of the Ancient City
Racial Skill (Elf)
Use this race skill to recognize useful plants and identify animals, navigate your homelands, or notice dangers in the wilderness. You may also pick one of the following flavors. Another flavor can be purchased by spending a stunt slot or Refresh.
Fae Glamour. Like many fae, you are adept with illusion magic. You can use your Elf skill as a high magic skill in place of Glamour.
Elven Blade Dancer. When using finesse weapons, you can use your Elf skill in place of Fight.
Elven Archery. When using a long bow, you may use your Elf skill in place of Shoot.
Other Available Stunts
Night Vision. You can see in the dark so long as there is starlight or moonlight available. This can bypass modifiers to Notice or Investigate roll where being in the dark is a factor.
Race: Night Elf
Night elves are related to their surface-dwelling kin, but had branched off to seek their own destiny ages ago. They are tall and lithe, with long, pointed ears like their surface kin, but possess skin color ranging from dusky blue to charcoal grey. Their eyes vary in color depending on their clan, but crimson and violet are often found among members of the largest clans. Their black hair is usually worn long by the women, but men usually shave their heads.
Night elves maintain cities deep below the earth among networks of vast caverns and tunnels. They often compete with dwarves for resources and will even raid the surface lands for slaves.
Magic Is in My Blood, Perfectionist, The Patience of Centuries, Fierce Warriors of the Deep, Cruel Master of Magic and Mayhem
Racial Skill (Night Elf)
Night elf characters may use this skill to identify flora and fauna deep underground, navigate their homelands and notice dangers underground. You may also pick one of the following flavors. Another flavor can be purchased by spending a stunt slot or point of Refresh.
Fae Shadow Magic. Night elves have a natural affinity to Shadow magic. They can use their Night Elf skill in place of the high magic skill, Shadow.
Night Elf Weapon Master. Select either Shoot or Fight. If you choose Fight, you can use your Night Elf skill instead when you wield a finesse weapon such as the scimitar. If you choose Shoot, you can use your Night Elf skill instead when you use a crossbow.
Other Available Stunts
Dark Sight. You can see in absolute darkness, but cannot distinguish color in such low lighting. This can bypass modifiers to Notice or Investigate roll where being in the dark is a factor.
Goblins are usually thought of as a corruption of the “fair” races of the world. They tend to look like greenish-grey skinned caricatures of elves and humans. Most are scrawny and dangerous, tend toward foul habits, banditry and slave taking. They covet “pretty things”, be they precious metals, gems, jewelry or attractive human and elf maidens.
Some of this surely stems from the fact that all goblins are male and thus cannot reproduce without kidnapping females of other races. Because they find human and elfin maidens most attractive, they are the typical victims of goblin kidnappings. When offspring are the result, sons are always goblins. Daughters are free of goblin corruption.
Goblins often have short, violent lives. However, the strongest and smartest of them never seem to suffer from old age, no matter how old they really are. They just get bigger and stronger. Some folk call the big, smart ones “hobgoblins” and the biggest and meanest of them all, “bugbears”. In truth, they are all the same race.
Not all goblins are violent bandits and slavers. Some try to leave such violent ways behind and focus on a more practical existence. A goblin tinker is a traveling trader who usually has something of interest to other folk — though folk will be wary about cheating him. The goblin capacity for mischief when offended is legendary.
Warrior of the Seven Tribes, Blood and Glory!, Drives a Hard Bargain, “Oo! Preeetty!”, Filthy but Effective
Racial Skill (Goblin)
Goblin characters can use this skill when attempting to steal something or set up an ambush. They may also use it to appraise an item’s relative worth. In addition, pick one of the following flavors; you can purchase more by spending a stunt slot or point of Refresh.
Backstab. When you create an advantage with your Goblin skill to set up a sneaky attack, you can invoke it an extra time for free if successful or if you have success with style when creating the advantage.
Bartering. You can use your Goblin skill to haggle in place of Rapport.
Other Available Stunts
Heat Vision. You can see in the dark by sensing heat patterns. This can bypass modifiers to Notice or Investigate where being without light is a factor. It is thought that this ability is passed down as a corrupt form of an elf mother’s night sight or dark sight.
Also known as human, the race of man has a very long history. This is undisputed and for some, obvious. Ancient ruins from the lost Age of Heroes still dot the landscape in many places. They can be found preserved in layers of ancient volcanic ash and at the bottom of lakes and seas. The bones of mankind’s ancient civilizations are still there to see for those with eyes to look and yet more evidence lies buried or forgotten.
The race of man is the oldest of the races in the world. While they no longer dominate Faeln, mankind remains in scattered kingdoms, city states, and even a small empire or two. They hold onto ancient knowledge and arts, especially those useful in defense and survival.
It is helpful to note that there is no such thing as a half-human. Humans can breed with other races such as elves, goblins and even dwarves, but the result is one other the other. In the case of goblins, a human might give birth to either a goblin male or a human girl. In the case of humans having children with an elf or dwarf mate, the result is also always a male or female child of the non-human race. Some elf societies believe such offspring are “impure”, though there is no biological basis for this belief. Still, that does not stop the stodgier elders from calling such elf children “half-elven”. See the entry for Dwarf, Elf or Night Elf to see what their racial skills are like.
Willful Survivor, Last Champion of Smythestown, Wise and Powerful Teacher of Lost Magics, The Way of the Open Fist
Racial Skill (Man)
Human characters can use this skill when they need to fall back upon a bit of rare, practical knowledge necessary for civilized living. For example your character might know the best place and best way to build a well, bring water down from the mountains, and not to use lead pipes to provide running water. You may also pick one of the flavors below and purchase more by spending a stunt or point of Refresh.
Stone Mason. You’ve spent so much time helping to build and repair homes while growing up in human settlements, you have a pretty good idea of how to build a proper home — and have an understanding of defensive works.
Student of the Way. You have spent long hours practicing your people’s kata every day. Defense is the duty of the individual as well as the community. Thus you have developed an inner balance you can use for your defense and others. You may use your race skill in place of Fight when fighting unarmed.