In the reckonings of most worlds, humans are the youngest of the common species, late to arrive on the world scene and short-lived in comparison to dwarves, elves, and dragons. Perhaps it is because of their shorter lives that they strive to achieve as much as they can in the years they are given. Or maybe they feel they have something to prove to the elder species, and that’s why they build their mighty empires on the foundation of conquest and trade. Whatever drives them, humans are the innovators, the achievers, and the pioneers of the worlds.
A Broad Spectrum
With their penchant for migration and conquest, humans are more physically diverse than other common species. There is no typical human. Human skin shades range from nearly black to very pale, and hair colors from black to blond (curly, kinky, or straight); males might sport facial hair that is sparse or thick. A lot of humans have a dash of nonhuman blood, revealing hints of elf, orc, or other lineages. Humans reach adulthood in their late teens and rarely live even a single century.
Variety in All Things
Humans are the most adaptable and ambitious people among the common species. They have widely varying tastes, morals, and customs in the many different lands where they have settled. When they settle, though, they stay: they build cities to last for the ages, and great kingdoms that can persist for long centuries. An individual human might have a relatively short life span, but a human nation or culture preserves traditions with origins far beyond the reach of any single human’s memory. They live fully in the present—making them well suited to the adventuring life—but also plan for the future, striving to leave a lasting legacy. Individually and as a group, humans are adaptable opportunists, and they stay alert to changing political and social dynamics.
Where a single elf or dwarf might take on the responsibility of guarding a special location or a powerful secret, humans found sacred orders and institutions for such purposes. While dwarf clans and hin elders pass on the ancient traditions to each new generation, human temples, governments, libraries, and codes of law fix their traditions in the bedrock of history. Humans dream of immortality, but (except for those few who seek undeath or divine ascension to escape death’s clutches) they achieve it by ensuring that they will be remembered when they are gone.
Although some humans can be xenophobic, in general their societies are inclusive. Human lands welcome large numbers of nonhumans compared to the proportion of humans who live in nonhuman lands.
Exemplars of Ambition
Humans who seek adventure are the most daring and ambitious members of a daring and ambitious species. They seek to earn glory in the eyes of their fellows by amassing power, wealth, and fame. More than other people, humans champion causes rather than territories or groups.
Human Names and Ethnicities
Having so much more variety than other cultures, humans as a whole have no typical names. Some human parents give their children names from other languages, such as Dwarven or Elvish (pronounced more or less correctly), but most parents give names that are linked to their region’s culture or to the naming traditions of their ancestors.
The material culture and physical characteristics of humans can change wildly from region to region.
Your human character has the following traits.
Health. Your health increases by 8.
Age. Humans reach adulthood in their late teens and live less than a century.
Size. Humans vary widely in height and build, from barely 150 centimeters to well over 180 centimeters tall. Regardless of your position in that range, your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 5 meters.
Determined. When you make an attack roll, an ability check, or a saving throw, you can reroll the roll, but before any effects of the roll are applied.
Once you use this trait, you must finish a short or long rest before you can use it again.
Versatile. You are capable with two skills of your choice and you gain a 2nd level feat of your choice from the general feats or from a theme you know.
This feat cannot be replaced.