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 Adding More Racial Disadvantage
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Carter7Gindenv
Acolyte

Switzerland
8 Posts

Posted - 11 Sep 2018 :  20:22:24  Show Profile Send Carter7Gindenv a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Hello, after getting more and more familiar with the game mechanics, I felt the desire to add more racial disadvantages to pump up roleplaying moment. The problem is, I lack a bit of lore for that so anyone could help me? ( I'm also searching advantage for human )

What I could find already is:
Dwarfs are bad swimmer.
Humans usually gives a more neutral reaction when dealing with other races.
elves are so proud that being humiliated is far worse for them.
Half-orc are hot headed and may respond quicker to insult etc...

[I find it a bit sad to play Human. You have the extra feat/skill and it's all. Of course if you know every subrace of human it gets more interesting but with the basics it tends to be a bit hollow.]

have a nice week!

The Masked Mage
Great Reader

USA
2020 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  02:21:37  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The primary racial disadvantages USED to be level restrictions, based on race.

This was so that people would choose to play humans because if you were something else, eventually you'd end up the weakest in the party. Otherwise, the strengths of the other races (longer life spans among them) would make it pointless to be human.

When WOTC changed everything to be more like world of warcraft, this largely went away and you had people playing every race you can imagine. I see the strengths of both systems, and understand the fundamental differences in the ideologies. I prefer a middle ground. No limits, but slower advancement.
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moonbeast
Senior Scribe

USA
475 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  02:34:23  Show Profile Send moonbeast a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As DM, I would restrict anyone playing a Half-Orc that they cannot have starting Charisma higher than 10 (statistical average). Of course, in the ensuing months and years of adventuring, that Half-Orc character could prove himself to be a great leader, a charismatic fellow, a charming casanova, or someone that others would love and admire and greatly respect, and his Charisma could significantly rise as a matter of leveling, or as a boon, etc. But that's the role of a true hero…. to prove their merit.

There are a few other "House Rule" restrictions that I impose on (starting) Characters in my campaign. But most of them are minor, none of them are game-breaking or severe enough to discourage players. In the end, it's the Players that should determine the fiat and the legacy of their heroes.


Edited by - moonbeast on 12 Sep 2018 02:37:44
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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

827 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  05:16:44  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Carter7Gindenv

Hello, after getting more and more familiar with the game mechanics, I felt the desire to add more racial disadvantages to pump up roleplaying moment. The problem is, I lack a bit of lore for that so anyone could help me? ( I'm also searching advantage for human )

What I could find already is:
Dwarfs are bad swimmer.
Humans usually gives a more neutral reaction when dealing with other races.
elves are so proud that being humiliated is far worse for them.
Half-orc are hot headed and may respond quicker to insult etc...

[I find it a bit sad to play Human. You have the extra feat/skill and it's all. Of course if you know every subrace of human it gets more interesting but with the basics it tends to be a bit hollow.]

have a nice week!



The whole "racial disadvantage" thing depends on your players. Humans are arguably one of the best races; that bonus feat is straight-up one of the better racial abilities in the game.

A lot of the rest are circumstantial. Dwarves being bad swimmers are irrelevant if you're not in an aquatic campaign; half-orcs being grumpy don't really matter when half-orcs are seldom the party face; humans having neutral relations with other races is kind of odd, given that humans apparently bang elves so often that half-elves are a valid race by themselves (and half-dragons, half-fiends, half-celestials, half-orcs, half-drow, half-whatever); elves being proud is, like, 99% of fantasy elves.

Pathfinder has a lot of alternate racial traits, so go wild. https://www.d20pfsrd.com/races/
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Harvest
Acolyte

9 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  06:57:40  Show Profile Send Harvest a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by moonbeast

As DM, I would restrict anyone playing a Half-Orc that they cannot have starting Charisma higher than 10 (statistical average).




Iirc Artemis Entreri once fell for a beautiful Half-Orc, I'd be willing to bet she had a stellar Cha score. There are always exceptions to the rule.

quote:
...none of them are game-breaking or severe enough to discourage players.


That would certainly discourage me from making a Half-Orc Sorcerer.
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3525 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  08:25:21  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Are we talking about 3.5?

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Harvest
Acolyte

9 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  18:50:39  Show Profile Send Harvest a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

Are we talking about 3.5?


... you know what? I don't know, but I was.
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6684 Posts

Posted - 12 Sep 2018 :  21:10:49  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dwarven stature also prevents them from riding horseback or using longbows. (Not that it matters much since they're quite okay with ponies, siege engines, and crossbows.)
Orcs are ugly and regarded as violent, stupid, savage brutes by other races ... even when they're not. (Individual orcs can be quite civilized, reasonable, even educated ... though still ugly.)
Agreed that elves are basically overpowered now that racial level limits aren't applied and elven "exoticism" in non-elven societies is routinely ignored.

But humans do have ... uh, well, nothing actually. Baseline, boring, middle of the road. Especially since "unlimited" class and level options have effectively become open to all races.

But if an extra feat/skill isn't enough then give humans some intangible "role playing advantages" when interacting with NPCs (who are, after all, mostly human). Friendly tips and helpful clues from townsfolk, free drinks from strangers, invitations to sit by the campfire, smiles from pretty girls, little discounts from the vendors who "already have that in stock" and who don't "need to adjust the fit". All those little things can really add up. And they're fully controllable by the DM - they can be used often enough to encourage players to choose humans, they can be increased or decreased at any time (on a whim) to keep human PCs vs non-human PCs more "balanced" during actual gameplay, especially if the non-human PCs are exposed to the opposite (find themselves treated with suspicion and mistrust, ignored, charged a little more by the shopkeeps, etc). Roleplayers (of all types) really hate it when their investment into a character gets ignored - something which can happen often enough if NPCs always prefer to talk with the human in the party, being nervous or uncomfortable or contemptuous of the non-humans in the party - humans will be more popular with players who realize that humans get more love and all the glory. And maybe that elf won't get so many human girls if their human opinion is that every elf is "hung like a pencil".

Tables describing these sorts of racial attitudes were offered in AD&D 1E. Obviously removed in subsequent game editions because they are racism ... which is not something I imagine TSR/WotC wishes to condone or promote in their products, lol.

A less "racist" way to make humans a more compelling racial pick could be to give humans +10% XP bonus or something, explained as the versatility of human thinking or the human drive to achieve more in less time, etc etc.

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 12 Sep 2018 21:41:49
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Carter7Gindenv
Acolyte

Switzerland
8 Posts

Posted - 13 Sep 2018 :  17:09:38  Show Profile Send Carter7Gindenv a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

But if an extra feat/skill isn't enough then give humans some intangible "role playing advantages" when interacting with NPCs (who are, after all, mostly human).

Yhea I will try to think about something, maybe discussing with the player. "your character came from Luskan? so you are better at negotiation and you will know your way around cities quiet well"

quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

And maybe that elf won't get so many human girls if their human opinion is that every elf is "hung like a pencil".


Knowing my players, they would hate to pass on an occasion to sleep with anything. So yhea, it could work pretty well XD (I'm pretty sure all DM can relate to that )

quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik
Tables describing these sorts of racial attitudes were offered in AD&D 1E. Obviously removed in subsequent game editions because they are racism ... which is not something I imagine TSR/WotC wishes to condone or promote in their products, lol.


But, I thought it was the main reason people played tabletop RPG, just to kill anyone who happened to just have the bad luck of being there. Then arguing with the DM whether or not it was RP based on racial stereotype just to avoid a divine punishment.

Joke aside, thanks for your help
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moonbeast
Senior Scribe

USA
475 Posts

Posted - 13 Sep 2018 :  19:32:18  Show Profile Send moonbeast a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Carter7Gindenv

But, I thought it was the main reason people played tabletop RPG, just to kill anyone who happened to just have the bad luck of being there. Then arguing with the DM whether or not it was RP based on racial stereotype just to avoid a divine punishment.

Joke aside, thanks for your help



D&D is now in the 21st century. We are all encouraged to role-play Equal Opportunity Murder Hobos.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31516 Posts

Posted - 13 Sep 2018 :  20:04:17  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
We prefer the phrase Roaming Asset Reallocation Specialists.

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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6684 Posts

Posted - 13 Sep 2018 :  22:57:47  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's not racism if you hate everybody equally.

[/Ayrik]
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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

827 Posts

Posted - 14 Sep 2018 :  18:09:07  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
...Why not just let them take traits or flaws, whether from D&D or Pathfinder? At least, that makes more sense than arbitrary "you're from Luskan, so you're a good diplomat".

I mean, most of the time, the party face is going to be the paladin, rogue or bard anyway.
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moonbeast
Senior Scribe

USA
475 Posts

Posted - 15 Sep 2018 :  16:58:30  Show Profile Send moonbeast a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

...Why not just let them take traits or flaws, whether from D&D or Pathfinder? At least, that makes more sense than arbitrary "you're from Luskan, so you're a good diplomat".

I mean, most of the time, the party face is going to be the paladin, rogue or bard anyway.



…. or the party face could also be a hedonistic Halfling psychopath with royal blood.

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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1728 Posts

Posted - 25 Sep 2018 :  16:53:45  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In teh classic (up to AD&D2), dwarves had low magic resistance, but involuntary (i.e. wastes beneficial spells) and applying when a dwarf uses a magical item not specifically created for his class (other than weapon/armor/belt).

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo. -Ed Whitchurch
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