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An Aasimar and a Tiefling walk into a bar...


Advice


Sounds like the beginning to a bad joke, but it's probably how I'm going to introduce a pair of NPCs to the campaign I'm running. The idea is that they are brother and sister. If this was a joke, it would probably have a good punchline. To put it bluntly, one of their parents had a thing for outsiders.

To sum things up, the Aasimar is a Fighter/Wizard going Eldritch Knight, and the Tiefling is a custom class I'm making (Fighter type, flavored similar to a Soul Knife). They're both rocking a 16+ Int score, so they're a very intelligent pair. The Aasimar (Peri Blooded) is a Chaotic Neutral who tries to be good, but is suffers sporatic fits of pyromania (lots of fire spells in his spell book). The Tiefling is Lawful Neutral, trying to escape her dark heritage by living a very disciplined life, similar to a monk.

My question is how I should go about role playing the pair. There must be a good amount of sibling love between to two, enough to protect each other from anything bad that comes their way. Any suggestion?

On that note, any ideas on some kind of quest or mission they might send the PCs on? (APL of 6, 4-6 players at any given time) I'm running the Rappan Athuk campaign for those familiar with it, though I have no problem altering existing content to make an interesting side plot for the PCs.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules Subscriber

Nothing's jumping out at the moment, but there's a lot of yin-yang symbolism to mine there.

If this is in Golarion, what region/culture are they from? If another setting, are there any details you could share about their place of origin?


An entire custom class for Soulknife? I could recommend a custom Archetype for the Magus class I created, if you want it fightery.

As far as the roleplaying, from your words it sounds like you want them to be Yin-Yang type things. A good kid with a little bit of a bad streak, and a bad kid trying to overcome hostile environment though pure discipline.

They would play off each other, know the other's strengths and weaknesses. Two questions, though:

Are they going to be playing in the same campaign simultaneously?

Are they twins or just siblings?


Just want to point out it'd be kinda hard for two siblings of different races to be twins.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules Subscriber

There are ways it could work, given the alternate ways tieflings and aasimar can be concieved according to the Blood Of _____ books. They're going to be very interesting circumstances, to say the least.


Skipping writing a sex ed lecture and citing basic biology, one would be a little older (no more than a year or two) than the other. Depending on the situation, I would run either one, or both of them at the same time. They will definitely be introduced together.

If you want to peak at the class, here's the link:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/19S8iGBo3dsNR12YeF0wWLHQuJVSb7bs9dO1pBIY 0XNA/edit

I was reserved in what I gave them, and I feel confident that it's balanced unless there is a feat tree or prestige class I don't know about that can absolutely break their class features. I feel they're actually somewhat lacking in power late-game compared to other classes, but I haven't play tested them so I wouldn't know.

As for where it is located: the magical land of unspecified-istan where lazy GMs plop all of their homemade creations. I try to stick to what Pathfinder lore I know from perusing the D20 website, though a lot is made up on the spot.


My custom Magus Archetype, if you ever want to compare it to your homebrew class.

It's based more on Arcane Force magic than the original Psionics of the Soulknife. Might play well into the discipline aspect of the sister, since her brother's kind of a Fire Evoker. At any rate, I like the dynamic.

As Mikaze says, there are various ways for both tieflings and aasimar to come into the world. It's entirely possible for them to be twins in the fantasy world of Pathfinder. It would also make for one hell of a background story.

Please indulge me and skip the IRL sex ed and biology classes that I'm well versed in, being a 36 year old father myself. I rarely apply modern science to fantasy role-playing universes involving magic and other-planar beings.

So, they're siblings, likely friendly rivals yet overly protective of each other. Do they know their parents or are they abandoned/adopted? It might matter how comfortable they are with each other. With a common goal or enemy, they'd likely be dependant upon the other, but fiercely independent of anyone else.

Cheliax

Rynjin wrote:
Just want to point out it'd be kinda hard for two siblings of different races to be twins.

It happens in the real world all the time. Especially if the mother is promiscuous. There are plenty of cases where a woman gave birth to twins with one of them being black and the other white. Now granted they aren't identical twins, they are still fraternal twins. I don't see how this couldn't happen in a fantasy setting with one being an assimar and the other a tiefling.


They would know their mortal parent, though he/she was killed off by an angry mob (I'm sure there'd be a couple dozen religious nut jobs who would be out to get someone who managed to father/mother both an Aasimar and a Tiefling). Left orphans at a young age, they fended for themselves and became dependent on one another. I'd like to imagine they'd be comfortable with each other, after all they grew together with only each other to rely on.


Evil Genius Prime wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Just want to point out it'd be kinda hard for two siblings of different races to be twins.
It happens in the real world all the time. Especially if the mother is promiscuous. There are plenty of cases where a woman gave birth to twins with one of them being black and the other white. Now granted they aren't identical twins, they are still fraternal twins. I don't see how this couldn't happen in a fantasy setting with one being an assimar and the other a tiefling.

The only thing I've seen like that is interracial couples having one kid of each race (black and white twins from a black and white couple or some such).

So that would open up the whole can of worms that for these guys to be twins they'd have to be the product of a demon raping an angel or something.

Well actually even that wouldn't work, because then where does the human half come from?

Cheliax

Rynjin wrote:
Evil Genius Prime wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Just want to point out it'd be kinda hard for two siblings of different races to be twins.
It happens in the real world all the time. Especially if the mother is promiscuous. There are plenty of cases where a woman gave birth to twins with one of them being black and the other white. Now granted they aren't identical twins, they are still fraternal twins. I don't see how this couldn't happen in a fantasy setting with one being an assimar and the other a tiefling.

The only thing I've seen like that is interracial couples having one kid of each race (black and white twins from a black and white couple or some such).

So that would open up the whole can of worms that for these guys to be twins they'd have to be the product of a demon raping an angel or something.

Well actually even that wouldn't work, because then where does the human half come from?

It can happen (outside of two mixed people) for one woman to have more than one egg fertilzed by more than one man. Of course, one kid would be full white and the other half white. But it can happen. Two eggs, two sperm cells from two different men.

The UK bi-racial twin girls recently in the news were actually identical twins. One egg, one sperm, and then the egg split.


Human + Peri = Aasimar

Some time later...

Same human + Evil Outsider = Tiefling

It's not rocket science, it's just biology. They're not twins, just related.

Anyway, I'm not here to argue Biology. Roleplaying people, let's get this back on track.

Shadow Lodge

Evil Genius Prime wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Just want to point out it'd be kinda hard for two siblings of different races to be twins.
It happens in the real world all the time. Especially if the mother is promiscuous. There are plenty of cases where a woman gave birth to twins with one of them being black and the other white. Now granted they aren't identical twins, they are still fraternal twins. I don't see how this couldn't happen in a fantasy setting with one being an assimar and the other a tiefling.

I wouldn't say 2.4% of fraternal twins is "all the time," but yes, it is possible, if the mother is human and has relations with a celestial and a fiend within about 5 days of each other. Rynjin, have a look at heteropaternal superfecundation.

However, fiction is held to higher standards of believability than reality is, and I think keeping them as simple half-siblings would be appropriate.

Cheliax

Joanna Swiftblade wrote:

Human + Peri = Aasimar

Some time later...

Same human + Evil Outsider = Tiefling

It's not rocket science, it's just biology. They're not twins, just related.

I understand that. You never said twins in the OP. I just wanted to explain to Rynjin (who said it would be kinda hard) that it is indeed in the realm of possibility.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The thing with Aasimar and Tieflngs, is that it can be several generations before any child manifests any Aasimar or Tiefling traits.

Also, most Aasimar and Tieflings don't manifest their fiendish/celestial attributes until puberty.

For some reason, I imagine their relationship being like Milo and Otis.


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I stand corrected, it is possible.

Still kinda hard though it seems.

What was the original question again?

Cheliax

Rynjin wrote:

I stand corrected, it is possible.

Still kinda hard though it seems.

What was the original question again?

Yeah, it's not something that happens with alarming regularity.

Hmm... maybe if people were more promiscuous.... LOL!

The scientist in me wants to start performing experiments. :D


blackbloodtroll wrote:
The thing with Aasimar and Tieflngs, is that it can be several generations before any child manifests any Aasimar or Tiefling traits.

This.

Mom doesn't even have to be promiscuous, simply have multiple outsiders in her ancestry.


well, if it was a promiscuous human woman. she could have done a peri one day, an incubus the next. leading to twins with different fathers.

or it could be, that she slept with a half fiend peri, whose sperm cells divided and gave each twin a different aspect. one twin, being born a peri blooded aasimaar, the other, a tiefling, one inheriting the celestial aspect, the other, the fiendish.

Shadow Lodge

The original question was how to roleplay the pair. I think that normal sibling bonds should be sufficient (EDIT: especially if they have a common goal or have little other family to rely on). They will likely also react strongly to any outsiders who give them trouble over their relationship or who malign one sibling or the other's ancestry - I can see the Aasimar in particular blowing up on people (possibly literally, with the fire magic) for this one ("she's my sister and you don't get to judge her"). The Tiefling may see these outbursts as evidence that she's "corrupting" her brother and may therefore try to prevent them. Strangers will likely assume that the Aasimar is the "good brother" who is "keeping his evil half-sister in line." The Tiefling may resent this, or may assume that it's actually true and that without the sibling's influence she would invariably slip into evil. The Tiefling may be jealous of the fact that her Aasimar half-brother doesn't need to struggle against a dark nature - conversely the Aasimar may envy his sister's discipline, as he likely regrets the damage his lack of control can cause.

blackbloodtroll wrote:

The thing with Aasimar and Tieflngs, is that it can be several generations before any child manifests any Aasimar or Tiefling traits.

Also, most Aasimar and Tieflings don't manifest their fiendish/celestial attributes until puberty.

True - these siblings as conceived are more likely to be half-celestial and half-fiendish. And indeed they could be full siblings showing off different ancestors from generations back. But I don't think these details are actually necessary to the NPC concepts.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Although, having these two like Jesse and James from Team Rocket is much more entertaining.


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blackbloodtroll wrote:
Although, having these two like Jesse and James from Team Rocket is much more entertaining.

Only if they wear matching outfits and doing the "intro dance/speech" every time they play together.

Make it a manifestation of the Dazzling Display feat!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules Subscriber

Either raising their mother or making sure she's at peace in her proper afterlife destination* might be one of their goals.

*Depending on the level of taboo she broke with the people that condemned her to death, she may very well have been cursed to wind up in an afterlife fate she didn't deserve or turned into some sort of undead. The trauma of what happened to her and experiencing what she may have believed to be the certain death of her children might be enough to turn her undead all on its own. And then, depending on the details of her childrens' conception, some wizard or somesuch may have trapped her soul for study or to put her to use as part of some artifact. The "Mother of Heaven and Hell's Scions" serving as a focal point for some device meant to harness/enslave planar energies/beings perhaps? And it would be causing her constant agony the entire time.

And her children could be becoming aware of that through their nightmares.

This could push them to desperate measures as they attempt to secure the PC's aid in saving their mother.


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We really need a background paper on these two characters to give you advice as to how to roleplay them.

Normally, creating a backstory will GENERATE the playstyle. People are well enough familiar with normal human psychology and sociology to understand trauma, jealousy, obsession, revenge, etc...and how they play into the idiosyncrasies of the character.


Speaking on multiple bloodlines the character Radovan Virholt is a product of

The Queen of Thorns spoiler:
both infernal and abyssal blood dating from hundreds of generations of tieflings.

So its possible for them to be twins.


Wow. That guy's internal conflict must rival the emo of a Dhampir.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Barry Armstrong wrote:
Wow. That guy's internal conflict must rival the emo of a Dhampir.

This is the first post in 3 months that made me spit soda out of my nose in laughter.


aasimar and tieflings have celestial and infernal ancestry, it doesn't necessarily have to be a direct parent. could be celestial grandparent on one side, infernal on the other...or even further back. this makes the twin concept...odd, but doable. why not?


Mikaze wrote:
There are ways it could work, given the alternate ways tieflings and aasimar can be concieved according to the Blood Of _____ books. They're going to be very interesting circumstances, to say the least.

Considering both are just humans with an outsider ancestor somewhere in their ancestry, its entirely conceivable that one heritage might come from each parent's side of the family, or maybe both mixed in one parent's ancestry.

I had two players once who played an aasimar and a tiefling respectively who were siblings.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

By the way, Aasimar and Tieflings can be borne of any humanoid race.

It is not a Human only occurrence.


Perhaps the two siblings ran into a strange, blind beggar while they were orphaned and on the street and he told them a tale (true or not) in which they're really just dream figments conjured into reality by the dreams of a sleeping demon. They believe this story and wish to keep this creature in his slumber and thus not cease to exist.

They seek a fabled rug of powerful sleep enchantment. It's rumored to be guarded by the most cunning creatures and traps ever devised and no party has ever seen it and lived... although... there are rumors that a mysterious mantis can lead the way to safety.

Or maybe not. Maybe they seek to retrieve their mother's soul because, while she was being tied up by a mob in preparation for burning, a great demon in the form of a firecloud appeared. As the mob scattered, thus sparing the children, the cloud declared that he had fulfilled his end of the bargain and that she had birthed the chosen one and that as this was the time of her death he was claiming her soul. With a searing burst of agonizing heat the cloud incinerated her leaving behind nothing but cinders and ash.

Well, a shame she had never mentioned just which child or what that child was supposed to do with what and when. Perhaps she was waiting until that child was older and ready.

So the two stuck together, seeking lore and prophecies, but ultimately deciding they'll probably have to find their mother's soul and ask flat out, since consulting planar creatures with divinations might unwisely tip off the wrong listeners.

Maybe the aasimar was told or somehow got the impression (from a drunkenly misunderstood story/prophecy/bedtime story) that cleansing flame would guide his way and sometimes in the scorch marks and soot of defeated enemies he sees signs of where to go (whether true or not, he sees them). So he blasts often and everywhere, quietly studying old fireplaces, campsites, and scorch marks as well as the path of embers from a cremating corpse, rather than being the mad "Heh-hehing' type of pyro.

Maybe the tiefling has become so disciplined and reserved because she has a dark secret. Somehow, growing up and trying to figure out what the 'chosen child' was supposed to be or do, she realized that one of the two of them weren't really the child of the slain mother. But all attempts to divine the truth failed. This is truly unfortunate, because she's grown to love her childhood companion, for he's truly handsome, considerate, and not a raving lunatic to her.

But she can't tell him, because she still isn't sure who the real progeny is and she couldn't bear to face the journey alone if it's her and fears he might rebuff her if it's him. This is only made worse by his close, caring concern and seeming obliviousness to the uncomfortable feeling she has.

So the tiefling might be distant and reserved, tensing when her 'brother' innocently tends her wounds. With the party, she might try flirting and getting closer to another PC thinking that this might divert her emotions and let her concentrate, but she'll ultimately become distracted in the end. Similarly, seeing the aasimar become friendly with another female will cause her to rationalize that this will make him unavailable to her, but ultimately she will constantly view the other woman critically for any real or perceived failures.


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simplest answer to parentage: WIZAAAARRRRRD

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