Raptoran

Raptorans inhabit the buttes scattered throughout the Weird West.

  • Humanoid (raptoran).
  • Raptoran base land speed is 30 feet.
  • Medium: As Medium creatures, raptorans have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size. A flying raptoran is counted as a medium creature for the purpose of determining the effects of wind.
  • Wing-Aided Movement: Raptorans can use their wings to help with movement even if they can't fly yet. The extra lift from her wings gives a raptoran a +10 racial bonus on Jump checks.
    • Gliding (Ex): A raptoran can use her wings to glide, negating damage from a fall of any height and allowing 20 feet of forward travel for every 5 feet of descent. Raptorans glide at a speed of 40 feet (average maneuverability). Even if a raptoran's maneuverability improves, she can't hover while gliding. A raptoran can't glide while carrying a medium or heavy load. If a raptoran becomes unconscious or helpless while in midair, her wings naturally unfurl and powerful ligaments stiffen the wings. The raptoran descends in a tight corkscrew and takes only 1d6 points of falling damage, no matter what the actual distance of the fall.
    • Flight (Ex): When a raptoran reaches 5 Hit Dice, she becomes able to fly at a speed of 40 feet (average maneuverability). A raptoran can't fly while carrying a medium or heavy load or while fatigued or exhausted. Raptorans can safely fly for a number of rounds equal to their Constitution modifier (minimum 1 round). They can exert themselves to fly for up to twice as long, but then they're fatigued at the end of the flight. Raptorans are likewise fatigued after spending a total of more than 10 minutes per day flying. Because raptorans can glide before, after, and between rounds of actual flight, they can remain aloft for extended periods (even if they can only use flight for 1 round at a time without becoming fatigued).
  • Pact with the Wind Lords: Raptoran spellcasters cast spells with the Air descriptor at +1 caster level.
  • Unerring Direction: Raptorans have an instinctive sense of which direction is north, even when they are underground or otherwise unable to see the sky or other visual cues. Beyond the Material Plane, this ability doesn't function.
  • Low-Light Vision: A raptoran can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. A raptoran retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions.
  • Weapon Familiarity: Raptorans treat the footbow as a martial weapon rather than as an exotic weapon.
  • +2 racial bonus on Climb and Spot checks. Raptorans have strong grips with both hands and feet, and their eyes are unusually keen.
  • Automatic language: Tuilvilanuue, Desert Common.

Personality: Raptorans are careful thinkers who always weigh their options carefully. When faced with uncertainty, raptorans usually retreat to a safe distance and settle down to observe and ponder the situation for a while. Their detractors dismiss this behavior as cowardly or indecisive, yet raptorans are perfectly capable of improvising when the need arises, and they generally stick to a task once they have decided how to take it on. Raptorans seldom flee from danger; they just back off a little.

Raptorans love to argue and debate, whether or not they actually agree with the philosophy they are defending so passionately. They do not, however, waste time arguing when danger threatens or when they perceive that time is of the essence.

Physical Description: Feathered wings are a raptoran's singular identifying feature. When fully outstretched, they span 10 to 12 feet, although raptorans (when not flying) are more comfortable with them folded behind their backs. An interlocking series of ligaments allows raptorans to lock their wings in the outstretched position, enabling them to glide for long periods without tiring. The wing feathers are ordinarily white, with black-tipped feathers appearing more often as a raptoran ages. Raptorans tend to be thinner and slightly taller than humans, with most of their extra height in their legs; their arms are likewise somewhat longer. They average just over 6 feet tall and weigh around 150 pounds. Their legs end in bony talons that aren't particularly sharp but have tremendous gripping strength. Raptoran hands are much like human hands, but each finger ends in a thick, almost clawlike fingernail. The race does not have facial hair, but downy feathers on a raptoran's scalp can resemble hair when viewed at a distance. Some female raptorans have a row of more substantial feathers running from earlobe to earlobe across the back of the head and neck. Females can fan out this neck ruff to display it; male raptorans consider a well groomed neck ruff to be attractive.

Raptoran clothing tends to be utilitarian and streamlined. Garb that's heavy, restrictive, or too loose would impede flight, so most raptorans rely on a close-fitting shirt and a simple set of breeches. Because a raptoran's feathered wings provide better insulation than a down quilt, lightly dressed raptorans are comfortable even in cold climes. Raptoran clothing includes straps and buckles for keeping pockets closed, because raptorans in flight would otherwise drop coins and other possessions. Dangling jewelry is disdained as an annoyance in flight. Raptorans sometimes dye individual wing feathers in arresting combinations — a decorative art not unlike the cosmetics that some humans wear.

Relations: To a raptoran, any unfamiliar being is potentially an ally or an enemy, and she keeps her distance until she can be sure of a newcomer's intentions. Other creatures often consider raptorans to be aloof and somewhat snobbish toward creatures that cannot fly. The truth of the matter is that while raptorans literally look down on land-bound creatures, that situation is more a matter of circumstance than of arrogance. Raptorans instinctively pity creatures that can't soar on the winds, but they're introspective enough to realize that not everyone shares the desire to fly.

As hunters and ranchers on the edge of civilization, raptorans tend to be territorial. They tolerate travelers who are just passing through their territories, but they expect visitors to seek permission before hunting or harvesting forest plants in the area. Those who tarry overlong in raptoran territory – and those who settle too close for raptoran comfort – face increasing harassment from, and eventual war with, the raptorans.

Raptorans tend to be tolerant of other folk who come to visit and not to stay. They often barter with the frontier races, trading game, furs, and other products for metal goods, cloth, and salt. Raptorans regard most fey creatures as somewhat frivolous, including the unpredictable Dusklings. Raptorans are especially cautious around Lizardfolk, aware of their aggressive nature, but maintain a good rapport, since the two races rarely clash over the same resources. They find dwarves somewhat odd, even comical to look at because of their stout bodies.

Alignment: Raptorans tend toward lawfulness. They are well disciplined and thoughtful, not likely to act rashly. They also tend slightly toward good over evil, helping others if they can, as long as it doesn’t put their own tribe at inordinate risk. Since a raptoran’s favoured class is Incarnate, it is usually neutral on one axis.

Lands: Raptorans inhabit the buttes and tablelands of the desert, as well as the more mountainous regions to the northwest. Tribes congretate at the top of these elevations, with individual homes built in depressions or excavated areas of the hill’s face. Cliffs with overhangs and southern exposures are particularly comfortable for raptorans. If a canyon has a prevailing breeze that blows through it, raptorans regard that location as a particularly auspicious place to live.

While raptorans do engage in some agriculture (mostly fruit orchards), they subsist on hunting whatever herd animals are prevalent near their cliff dwellings and gathering wild plants. Thus, they usually live far from large settlements of other races, in areas where game is plentiful and the hunting is good. Some raptoran flocks tend herds of bison, deer, or elk near their communities, taking some of the livestock each season for food.

Religion: Raptorans engage in a form of ancestor worship, which they identify with the air and wind. Light breezes can be interpreted as the touch or words of a long-departed loved one. They hold sittings in which they meditate and ask for advice from the departed.

Language: Raptorans speak a fluid and lyrical tongue they call Tuilvilanuue, which has many long, tongue-twisting words but simple grammar, relying on inflection to convey much of its meaning. Written Tuilvilanuue uses a simple script.

Most raptorans have a practical mind-set, so they confine their writing to messages. Many raptoran songs, poems, and histories exist, but the raptorans prefer memorizing these to writing them down. "Memories are lighter to carry than books," a raptoran saying goes.

Names: A raptoran child receives a birth name from her parents, which serves to identify the child as she grows up. Sometime after the child reaches adolescence she acquires a nickname — occasionally from a flock elder but often a sobriquet that just seems to stick. As a matter of practice, only members of a raptoran's flock may refer to her by her nickname, and even then they only do so when no strangers are present. Close friends and family members often continue to use a raptoran's birth name as a mark of affection.

A raptoran may reveal her flock nickname to someone outside the flock if she wishes, but no one else may do so. Sharing one's flock nickname with an outsider is a mark of deep respect, trust, or affection.

When a raptoran gains the ability to fly under her own power, she chooses an adult name for herself. In addition, a raptoran has a family name, which is often a compound of several descriptive Tuilvilanuue words.

Classes: Raptorans are likely to take levels in Incarnate (their favoured class), cleric, druid, fighter, ranger (making use of their footbows), or sorcerer. Some Raptorans take levels in monk, sorcerer, or a psionic class.

Adventurers: Raptorans are cautious, so it is a rare few that adventure for excitement, wanderlust, greed, or curiosity. These raptorans lean toward the chaotic alignment and simply want to spread their wings and see the world. Other raptorans are interested learning in what dangers await in the world, to investigate threats and return to the clan with this information. Raptorans value knowledge and history, and may adventure to learn more about a people, place, or phenomenon.

Character Options: Raptorans often take the feats Flyby Attack, Hover, and Wingover, as well as Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Far Shot, Rapid Shot, and other feats that promote their ranged attacks. They can also take the Tireless Flight feat listed here.

Tireless Flight
Prerequisites: Flight racial ability.
Benefit: You have enough stamina and prowess to fly for longer periods. They can fly at a speed of 40 feet (average maneuverability), and flying requires no more exertion than walking or running. A raptoran with flight can make a dive attack. A dive attack works like a charge, but the raptoran must move a minimum of 30 feet and descend at least 10 feet. A raptoran can make a dive attack only when wielding a piercing weapon; if the attack hits, it deals double damage. A raptoran with flight can use the run action while flying, provided she flies in a straight line.

Skybound template
Skybound is an inherited template that can be applied to any raptoran. Skybound raptorans see themselves as inheritors of the sky, the wind, and the very air of the world. They are most often neutral. They appear as normal raptorans, with one or two unusual traits representing their quasi-elemental nature, such as a light blue color to their skin or feathers, a slight breeze in their presence at all times, or flesh that is cool to the touch.

  • Skybound raptorans gain the (air) subtype.
  • A flying skybound raptoran is considered to be a large creature when determining the effects of wind.
  • +2 dexterity.
  • Fly speed increases by 10 feet.
  • Skybound raptorans have double the range increment for spot checks, taking only a -1 penalty per 20 feet instead of per 10 feet.
  • Flyby Attack.
  • Level adjustment +1.
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