Kryx RPGThemesMonsters

Shifter

Shifters are sometimes called the weretouched, as many believe that they are the descendants of humans and lycanthropes. They are humanoids with a bestial aspect; while they cannot fully change shape they can temporarily enhance their animalistic features—a state they call shifting. Whatever their origins, shifters have evolved into a unique species. A shifter walks on the knife’s edge between the wilds and the world around them. Do they embrace their primal instincts or the path of civilization?

Cultural Traits

Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common.

Traits

Your shifter character has the following traits.

Health. Your health increases by 8.

Age. Shifters are quick to mature both physically and emotionally, reaching young adulthood at age 10. They rarely live to be more than 70 years old.

Size. Shifters sizes depend on their variant.

Speed. Your base walking speed is 9 meters.

Keen Senses. You are capable with the Perception skill.

Low-Light Vision. Due to your lycanthrope ancestry, you have superior vision in dim conditions. You can see twice as far in dim light and dim light doesn’t impose disadvantage on your Perception checks.

Shift. As a bonus action, you can assume a more bestial appearance. This transformation lasts for 1 minute, until you die, or until you revert to your normal appearance as a bonus action. While shifted you gain the following benefits:

  • You grow claws, fangs, spines, horns, or a different natural weapon based on your variant. Your natural weapons can be used to make unarmed strikes. If you hit with them, you deal damage equal to 1d4 + your Strength or Dexterity, the damage is bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage, as appropriate to the natural weapon you chose.
  • Your speed increases to 10.5 meters.
  • You gain darkvision out to a range of 18 meters. If you already have darkvision, its range increases by 18 meters.

You also gain additional benefits that depend on your shifter variant, described below.

At 9th level, your natural weapons become more deadly; the damage increases to 1d6 + your Strength or Dexterity.

Once you shift, you can’t do so again until you finish a short or long rest.

Bear

Bear shifter are powerful shifters. In humanoid form, they are large, muscular, and covered in hair matching the color of their ursine form’s fur. A bear shifter might typically be a loner, fearing what might happen to innocent creatures around it when its bestial nature takes over.

When a bear shifter shifts, it grows to enormous size, lashing out with weapons or claws, fighting with the ferocity of a bear. Solitary creatures, bear shifters act as wardens over their territory, protecting flora and fauna alike from humanoid or monstrous intrusion.

Size. Bear shifters are between 180 and 240 centimeters tall and weigh between 80 and 130 kilos on average. Your size is Medium.

Bear Empathy. You can comprehend and verbally communicate with bears. The knowledge and awareness of many beasts is limited by their intelligence, but at a minimum, beasts can give you information about nearby locations and monsters, including whatever they can perceive or have perceived within the past day.

Powerful Build. You count as one size larger when determining your carrying capacity and the weight you can push, drag, or lift.

Stability. You have advantage on ability checks and saving throws to avoid being knocked prone, pulled, or pushed.

Tear Tendon. You know the tear tendon maneuver. When you reach 3rd level, while shifted, you can use it without expending stamina. You regain the ability to use it with this trait when you finish a long rest.

At 5th level you regain the ability to use this maneuver with this trait when you finish a short or long rest. At 9th level your maneuver is enhanced to 2 stamina, at 13th level your maneuver is enhanced to 3 stamina, and at 17th level your maneuver is enhanced to 4 stamina.

Boar

Boar shifters are ill-tempered and vulgar brutes. As humanoids, they are stocky and muscular, with short, stiff hair. In humanoid form, they use weapons, while shifted, they gain a devastating goring attack.

Boar shifters live in small family groups in remote forest areas, building ramshackle huts or dwelling in caves. They are suspicious of strangers but sometimes ally themselves with orcs.

Size. Boar shifters average between 150 and 180 centimeters tall and weigh between 60 and 90 kilos on average. Your size is Medium.

Boar Empathy. You can comprehend and verbally communicate with boars. The knowledge and awareness of many beasts is limited by their intelligence, but at a minimum, beasts can give you information about nearby locations and monsters, including whatever they can perceive or have perceived within the past day.

Relentless Endurance. When you are reduced to 0 health but not killed outright, you can drop to 1 health instead.

Once you use this trait, you must finish a long rest before you can use it again.

Charge. You know the charge maneuver. When you reach 3rd level, while shifted, you can use it without expending stamina. You regain the ability to use it with this trait when you finish a long rest.

At 5th level you regain the ability to use this maneuver with this trait when you finish a short or long rest. At 9th level your maneuver is enhanced to 2 stamina, at 13th level your maneuver is enhanced to 3 stamina, and at 17th level your maneuver is enhanced to 4 stamina.

Rat

Rat shifters are cunning with sly, avaricious personalities. They are wiry and twitchy in humanoid form, with thin hair and darting eyes. Rat shifters prefer light weapons and use ambush tactics rather than fighting as a pack. Although a rat shifter can deliver a nasty bite, it favors stealthy infiltration and ambushes.

A rat shifter clan operates much like a thieves’ guild, though rat shifters that break loose from the clan’s control are quickly hunted down and killed. Rat shifter clans are found throughout urban civilization, often dwelling in cellars and catacombs. These creatures are common in the sewers beneath major cities, viewing those subterranean areas as their hunting grounds. Rats and giant rats are commonly found living among rat shifters.

Size. Rat shifters average about a meter tall and weigh about 20 kilos on average. Your size is Small.

Rat Empathy. You can comprehend and verbally communicate with rats. The knowledge and awareness of many beasts is limited by their intelligence, but at a minimum, beasts can give you information about nearby locations and monsters, including whatever they can perceive or have perceived within the past day.

Stealthy. You can attempt to hide even when you are obscured only by a creature that is at least one size larger than you or when you are only lightly obscured by foliage, heavy rain, falling snow, mist, and other natural phenomena.

Tear Flesh. You know the tear flesh maneuver. When you reach 3rd level, while shifted, you can use it without expending stamina. You regain the ability to use it with this trait when you finish a long rest.

At 5th level you regain the ability to use this maneuver with this trait when you finish a short or long rest. At 9th level your maneuver is enhanced to 2 stamina, at 13th level your maneuver is enhanced to 3 stamina, and at 17th level your maneuver is enhanced to 4 stamina.

Tiger

Tiger shifters are ferocious hunters and warriors with a haughty and fastidious nature. Lithe and sleekly muscular in humanoid form, they are taller than average and meticulously groomed. Tiger shifters grow to enormous size while shifted, striking for the jugular. Generally solitary creatures, tiger shifters avoid others as they are seen as competition for territory and prey.

Tiger shifters live in jungles on the fringes of humanoid civilization, traveling to isolated settlements to trade or revel. They live and hunt alone or in small family groups.

Size. Tiger shifters average about 180 centimeters tall and weigh between 70 and 110 kilos on average. Your size is Medium.

Tiger Empathy. You can comprehend and verbally communicate with tigers. The knowledge and awareness of many beasts is limited by their intelligence, but at a minimum, beasts can give you information about nearby locations and monsters, including whatever they can perceive or have perceived within the past day.

Ambusher. You excel at leading ambushes and acting first in a fight. You have advantage on initiative rolls. In addition, you have advantage on attack rolls against any creature that hasn’t taken a turn in the combat yet.

Pounce. You know the pounce maneuver. When you reach 3rd level, while shifted, you can use it without expending stamina. You regain the ability to use it with this trait when you finish a long rest.

At 5th level you regain the ability to use this maneuver with this trait when you finish a short or long rest. At 9th level your maneuver is enhanced to 2 stamina, at 13th level your maneuver is enhanced to 3 stamina, and at 17th level your maneuver is enhanced to 4 stamina.

Wolf

Wolf shifters are aggressive predators. In its humanoid form, a wolf shifter has heightened senses, a fiery temper, and a tendency to eat rare meat. While shifter, it is a fearsome predator.

Most wolf shifter flee populated lands. In the wild, wolf shifters form packs that also include wolves and dire wolves.

Size. Wolf shifters average just under 180 centimeters tall and weigh between 60 and 100 kilos on average. Your size is Medium.

Wolf Empathy. You can comprehend and verbally communicate with wolves. The knowledge and awareness of many beasts is limited by their intelligence, but at a minimum, beasts can give you information about nearby locations and monsters, including whatever they can perceive or have perceived within the past day.

Hunter. You have advantage on ability checks to track creatures, can track other creatures while traveling at a fast pace, and you can move stealthily while traveling at a normal pace.

Pack Fighter. You gain a +2 bonus to melee attacks rolls against a flanked enemy instead of the normal +1.

Wolf Tactics. You know the pack tactics and trip maneuvers. When you reach 3rd level, while shifted, you can use one of the maneuvers without expending stamina. You regain the ability to use them with this trait when you finish a long rest.

At 5th level you regain the ability to use this maneuver with this trait when you finish a short or long rest. At 9th level your maneuver is enhanced to 2 stamina, at 13th level your maneuver is enhanced to 3 stamina, and at 17th level your maneuver is enhanced to 4 stamina.