Excerpts 01/06/2006


Races of the Dragon Excerpt
By Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Jennifer Clarke Wilkes,
Kolja Raven Liquette



Races of the Dragon provides D&D players and Dungeon Masters with an in-depth look at races descended from or related to dragons. In addition to exploring the fan-favorite kobold race, Races of the Dragon introduces two new races, dragonborn and spellscales, and provides information on half-dragons. The dragonborn are a transitive race, an exciting new concept that allows players to transform from their initial race into a new one. This book also includes a wealth of cultural information and new prestige classes, feats, equipment, spells, and magic items. The excerpts below include the disciple of the eye prestige class, sample racial substitution levels, some psionic powers, and draconic grafts.

Dragonborn Paladin

Lawful good dragonborn often become paladins. The class is in harmony with their dedicated nature to sanctify themselves through honorable service in the Dragonfall War. Many of the paladin's abilities make a dragonborn character extraordinarily well suited for fighting the spawn of Tiamat.

Hit Die: d10.

Requirements

A dragonborn paladin normally takes substitution levels at 1st level and when she would take her 4th and 5th paladin levels. However, a paladin who becomes a dragonborn later in her career can choose to retroactively take any or all dragonborn paladin substitution levels as replacements for class levels she has already gained.

Class Skills

Dragonborn paladin substitution levels have the class skills of the standard paladin class, plus Knowledge (arcana).

Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier (or four times this number as a beginning character).

Class Features

All the following are class features of the dragonborn paladin racial substitution levels.

Detect Dragonblood (Sp): A 1st-level dragonborn paladin can use detect dragonblood at will. This is a divination effect similar to a detect evil spell, except that it detects dragonblood creatures of any alignment. A dragonborn paladin can scan a 60-degree arc each round. By concentrating for 1 round, she knows if any dragonblood creatures are within the arc; concentrating for 2 rounds reveals the exact number of such creatures; and concentrating for 3 rounds reveals their exact locations. This ability is the equivalent of a 2nd-level spell.

This substitution feature replaces the standard paladin's detect evil class feature.

Bahamut's Blessing (Su): At 4th level, a dragonborn paladin who uses her smite evil ability against evil dragons and dragonbloods gains an additional +2 bonus on the attack roll. She also deals 1 extra point of damage per two paladin levels. For example, a 13th-level dragonborn paladin with a 20 Strength and armed with a +2 longsword deals 1d8+26 points of damage when using smite evil against an evil dragonblood (+13 from normal smite evil, +6 from Bahamut's blessing, + 5 from Str, and +2 from the longsword).

This substitution feature replaces the standard paladin's turn undead ability.

Fearless Special Mount (Sp): A 5th-level dragonborn paladin's special mount is immune to the frightful presence of dragons, in addition to having the standard qualities of a special mount.

This substitution feature replaces the improvement in base attack bonus normally gained by a 5th-level paladin. From 5th level on, a dragonborn paladin's base attack bonus is 1 lower than that of a standard paladin of her level.

Table 6-8: Dragonborn Paladin Racial Substitution Levels
Level Base
Attack
Bonus
Fort
Save
Ref
Save
Will
Save
Special Spellcasting
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Aura of good, detect dragonblood, smite evil 1/day Same as paladin
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 Bahamut's blessing Same as paladin
5th +4 +4 +1 +1 Fearless special mount, smite evil 2/day Same as paladin

Kobold Fighter

Kobold fighters train to master the use of the spear, the traditional weapon of kobolds. They forego learning how to use some armor in exchange for learning to dodge attacks. Kobold fighters exercise arduously throughout their careers, striving to overcome some of the physical deficiencies they inherit as kobolds.

Hit Die: d10.

Requirements

To take a kobold fighter substitution level, a character must be a kobold about to take his 1st, 2nd, or 4th level of fighter.

Class Skills

Kobold fighter substitution levels have the class skills of the standard fighter class, plus Profession (miner) and Search.

Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier (or four times this number as a beginning character).

Class Features

All the following are class features of the kobold fighter racial substitution levels.

Spear Focus (Ex): A 1st-level kobold fighter focuses his combat talents on spear fighting. He gains a +1 bonus on attack rolls with the following weapons: longspear, shortspear, and spear. At the DM's option, this bonus might also apply to other spearlike weapons.

This bonus does not stack with the bonus from Weapon Focus, but it is treated as the equivalent of Weapon Focus for qualifying for feats, prestige classes, and anything else that requires that feat. A kobold fighter who has this ability could take Weapon Specialization (spear) without selecting Weapon Focus (spear) as a separate feat.

This substitution feature replaces the standard fighter's 1st-level bonus feat and medium armor proficiency.

Dodge (Ex): A kobold fighter who takes the 1st-level racial substitution level gains Dodge as a bonus feat.

This substitution feature replaces the standard fighter's heavy armor proficiency.

Constitution Boost (Ex): At 2nd level, a kobold fighter increases his Constitution score by 2 points.

This substitution feature replaces the standard fighter's bonus feat gained at 2nd level.

Strength Boost (Ex): A kobold fighter who takes the 4th-level racial substitution level increases his Strength score by 2 points.

This substitution feature replaces the standard fighter's bonus feat gained at 4th level.


Table 6-9: Kobold Fighter Racial Substitution Levels
Level Base
Attack
Bonus
Fort
Save
Ref
Save
Will
Save
Special
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Spear focus, Dodge
2nd +2 +3 +0 +0 Constitution boost (Con +2)
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 Strength boost (Str +2)

Kobold Ranger

Kobold rangers are not deterred by their size, forging lifelong relationships with their preferred dire weasel companions, who more than make up for their masters' physical shortcomings. A kobold ranger is a sentinel for her tribe, riding the fringes of her lands in search of enemies and threats. Nothing slows a kobold ranger in pursuit of prey.

Hit Die: d8.

Requirements

To take a kobold ranger substitution level, a character must be a kobold about to take her 1st, 4th, or 7th level of ranger.

Class Skills

Kobold ranger substitution levels have the class skills of the standard ranger class.

Skill Points at Each Level: 6 + Int modifier (or four times this number as a beginning character).

Class Features

All the following are class features of the kobold ranger racial substitution levels.

Kobold Favored Enemy (Ex): A kobold ranger who takes the 1st-level racial substitution level gains the normal ranger favored enemy bonus on checks and damage rolls, but the skills affected by the bonus are Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Spot, and Survival instead of those given for the standard ranger.

If a kobold ranger selects fey, humanoid (dwarf), or humanoid (gnome) as her favored enemy, she gains a +3 bonus against the chosen creature type instead of the standard +2. Bonuses against such creatures also increase by 3 every time the kobold ranger gains a new favored enemy, instead of the standard +2 increase.

This substitution feature replaces but is otherwise identical to the standard ranger's favored enemy class feature (PH 47).

Dire Weasel Companion (Ex): A kobold ranger who takes the 4th-level racial substitution level gains a dire weasel animal companion. This ability functions like the druid's animal companion ability, treating the kobold ranger's effective druid level as half her ranger level, instead of half her ranger level -3. A kobold ranger cannot select from an alternative list of animal companions; she is restricted to choosing a dire weasel as her animal companion.

This substitution feature replaces the standard ranger's animal companion class feature.

A kobold ranger who takes this substitution level gains Track as a bonus feat and the wild empathy ability (PH 47), just as a standard ranger does.

Kobold Ranger Spells: A kobold ranger who takes the 4th-level racial substitution level replaces certain spells on her ranger spell list with kobold alternatives. For 1st-level ranger spells, steal size* replaces entangle. A kobold ranger also exchanges the 2nd-level ranger spells speak with plants and spike growth for local tremor* and soften earth and stone. She replaces the 3rd-level ranger spells command plants, diminish plants, plant growth, and tree shape with meld into stone, spike stones, stone shape, and stoneskin. Stone tell replaces the 4th-level ranger spell tree stride.

*New spells described in Chapter 7.

Subterranean Stride (Ex): A kobold ranger who takes the 7th-level racial substitution level can move across dense rubble or natural stone floors at her normal speed, ignoring any effects related to terrain (DMG 60). However, a rock surface that is enchanted or magically manipulated to impede motion still affects her.

This substitution feature replaces the standard ranger's woodland stride class feature.

Table 6-10: Kobold Ranger Racial Substitution Levels
Level Base
Attack

Bonus
Fort
Save
Ref
Save
Will
Save
Special Spellcasting
1st +1 +2 +2 +0 Kobold favored enemy, Track, wild empathy Same as ranger
4th +4 +4 +4 +1 Dire weasel companion, kobold ranger spells Same as ranger
7th +7/+2 +5 +5 +2 Subterranean stride Same as ranger

Kobold Rogue

Kobold rogues pride themselves on their comprehensive understanding of trap dynamics. Trapmaking is an art, a passion, and a racial pastime. Many kobolds dabble in trapmaking, and kobold rogues who do so gain additional insights into dealing with such devices. Kobold rogues are notoriously cowardly and fragile, however, and greatly prefer stealth and retreat over face-to-face conflict.

Hit Die: d4.

Requirements

To take a kobold rogue substitution level, a character must be a kobold about to take her 1st, 3rd, or 8th level of rogue.

Class Skills

Kobold rogue substitution levels have the class skills of the standard rogue class, plus Knowledge (dungeoneering).

Skill Points at Each Level: 8 + Int modifier (or four times this number as a beginning character).

Class Features

All the following are class features of the kobold rogue racial substitution levels.

Rapid Retreat (Ex): A kobold rogue who takes the 1st-level racial substitution level gains the ability to retreat quickly from dangerous situations. Any time a kobold rogue with this substitution feature uses the withdraw action, she gains a 5-foot bonus to her speed.

Shrewd Trapfinding (Ex): Starting at 1st level, each time a kobold rogue takes a substitution level, she gains a cumulative +2 competence bonus on Search checks to find traps and on Disable Device checks to disarm traps. This bonus is lost if the kobold rogue does not have a number of ranks in Craft (trapmaking) equal to or greater than her rogue class level.

This substitution feature alters but does not replace the standard rogue's trapfinding class feature.

Improved Trap Sense (Ex): At 3rd level, a kobold rogue gains an intuitive sense that alerts her to danger from traps. This is the same as the rogue's trap sense class feature, except that the bonus granted on Reflex saves and to AC is +2 instead of +1. A kobold rogue's trap sense continues to improve at the normal rate (to +3 at 6th level, +4 at 9th, and so on).

This extra bonus is lost, reducing the kobold rogue's trap sense bonus to the normal rogue value if the kobold rogue does not have a number of ranks in Craft (trapmaking) equal to or greater than her rogue class level. This substitution feature augments the standard rogue's trap sense class feature.

Evasive Skitter (Ex): A kobold rogue who takes the 8th-level racial substitution level gains the ability to move out of the area of dangerous spells and effects. A kobold rogue who succeeds on a Reflex save against a spell or effect gains the normal benefit for the successful save, and she can choose to move out of the area of the spell or effect. She must take the shortest path available to her, and she can't move farther than her speed. If more than one path of equal distance is available, she can choose which path to use. If no such path is available, the kobold rogue can't use this ability. This movement provokes attacks of opportunity as normal for movement.

Example: A kobold rogue with a speed of 30 feet is within the area of a fireball spell. She successfully saves against the spell, so she takes no damage from the blast and can move out of the spell's area by the shortest route available.

This substitution feature replaces the standard 8th-level rogue's improved uncanny dodge class feature.

Table 6-10: Kobold Rogue Racial Substitution Levels
Level Base
Attack

Bonus
Fort
Save
Ref
Save
Will
Save
Special
1st +0 +0 +2 +0 Rapid retreat, shrewd trapfinding +2, sneak attack +1d6
3rd +2 +1 +3 +1 Improved trap sense +2, shrewd trapfinding +4, sneak attack +2d6
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +2 Evasive skitter, shrewd trapfinding +6

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