Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game

Starfinder


Pathfinder Society


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Looking for some assistance hammering out a homebrew race


Homebrew

Liberty's Edge

So me and some friends have put together a homebrew setting and crafted up a handful of races. One of these races however, the Kamakiri (mantis people), feel a little...meh compared to some of the other stuff we have, and I was hoping I could get some advice and feedback on how to improve the race as a whole. The initial inspiration for the race was the artwork of WhiteMantis, but as of now I'm wanting to edge away from that, perhaps towards a sort of Hollow Knight direction. Anyway, here's the stats:

  • Ability Score Racial Traits: Kamakiri are naturally quick (a holdover from their mantis roots) and generally well educated, but the language barrier and their inability to easily communicate turn people off. They gain +2 Dexterity, +2 Intelligence, -2 Charisma.
  • Type: Kamakiri are Monstrous Humanoids. They receive Darkvision 60ft.
  • Size: Kamakiri are Medium creatures and thus have no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
  • Base Speed: Kamakiri have a base speed of 30ft.
  • Skill Bonus: Linguistics and Handle Animal are always class skills for Kamakiri and they receive +1 to Linguistics and Handle Animal.
  • Vermin Empathy: Kamakiri treat all creatures with the Vermin type as animals for the purposes of Handle Animal checks to train them.
  • Chitin: Kamakiri receive +2 natural armor due to their exoskeleton.
  • Natural Attacks: Kamakiri possess a pair of claws good for little more than attacking, lacking the dexterity and fine manipulation skills of their hands. These are separate limbs then their hands, but do not have item slots of their own. They have 2 Claw attacks (1d4).
  • Radiation Resistance: Kamakiri treat any form of radiation as one step lower for the purposes of save DCs and damage done.
  • Language Barrier: While Kamakiri may pick up any of the languages listed in this guide, they are restricted to communicating via sign-language and Kamakiri. This does not affect spellcasting, but does impact anything involving vocal communication.
  • Languages: Kamakiri begin play with Kamakiri and sign language. Kamakiri have access to all non-secret languages, but are unable to speak these languages (see below). They may understand languages as normal.

Alternate Racial Traits

  • Locust: Certain Kamakiri are gifted with wings at the cost of their lower claws, natural chiton and resistances to the natural radiation of Xang-Tsan. These Kamakiri have a fly speed of 30 feet with clumsy maneuverability. They also gain a bite attack at 1d3. This trait replaces Natural Attacks, Chitin and Radiation Resistance.
  • Quick and Quiet: Some Kamakiri are blessed with speed and stealth. Their base speed increases by +10 (to 40ft). In addition, they gain Perception and Stealth as class skills. This trait replaces Chitin and Radiation Resistance.
  • Grasshopper: These Kamakiri have, through various mutations, developed exceptional jumping skills. These Kamakiri can use Jump as a spell-like ability 1+Con/day. The caster level of the spell is equal to the Kamakiri’s character level. This trait replaces Chitin and Radiation Resistance.

----

I think one of the things I want to try is to expand the alternate racial trait for more variety of insect (we have spiders covered with another race already), or relegate the Mantis type to an Alternate Racial and make the base more of a generic insect almost in line with Kasatha in build (nix the claws, give them four arms instead) and have the alternate racials work off of that. I'm also very tempted to nix the language barrier. While a unique aspect to the race, it seems rather pointless without a sort of mechanical benefit or penalty.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

What power level of a PC are you going for? Because giving them four arms, flight, or 40 feet movement are significantly more powerful than standard PC races.

Shadow Lodge

(One of the aforementioned friends)

With the exception of the arms, those features you mentioned are already possessed by other races in the setting. And its not four arms; the two claws can't be used to wield anything.

Liberty's Edge

Cyrad wrote:
What power level of a PC are you going for? Because giving them four arms, flight, or 40 feet movement are significantly more powerful than standard PC races.

Racial-points-wise I'd say not more than 17, up to or at least on par with Aasimar. I think when we build this race we got it in around 15 RP or so.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

I don't mean RP. That's just the scope of the race. What tier are they? Would they be considered Advanced races? Is aasimar still the benchmark? Because a race that can fly at 1st level is NOT on par with the aasimar and neither is a race with 40-foot movement.

Liberty's Edge

Cyrad wrote:
I don't mean RP. That's just the scope of the race. What tier are they? Would they be considered Advanced races? Is aasimar still the benchmark? Because a race that can fly at 1st level is NOT on par with the aasimar and neither is a race with 40-foot movement.

Fair point. Advanced would probably be about right. Truthfully the purpose of this thread is to hopefully get this race sorted out both quality-wise and balance-wise. We're looking at a pretty hefty overhaul of the race, at the least the alternate racials, seeing as this particular race hasn't been touched since we wrote it up about a year or two ago.

Regarding the two alternate racials in question, perhaps switch the flight for gliding wings and lower the 40ft speed down to 35ft?

Also, someone on Reddit suggested a Stag Beetle that switches in for +2 for Bull Rush and a Gore attack.

Shadow Lodge

A clumsy fly speed isn't exactly going to get a first-level character many places, at least not out of combat. Most characters will have at most a +0 modifier, and that's assuming 18 Dex and no ACP. Any damage and the character has a good chance of plummeting.

Kamakiri are meant to be a somewhat powerful race, but they are balanced out by what I call their wookie vocals. In fact, the version I saw was supposed to have Kamakiri and Common as starting languages. It may seem like an opportunity to minmax to some, but literally being unable to speak any language but your own is a very real disadvantage to players. It also means no language-dependant spells unless you can cast Tongues.

Liberty's Edge

If we are going to keep the "wookie vocals" (I'm personally not a fan) then there needs to be a stated mechanical drawback to it as opposed to the broad wording of the penalty. And we would also need to change up the skill bonuses to properly reflect the language barrier.

Personally I think it would just be easier to drop the language barrier altogether as it just feels prohibitive from a player perspective.


What Cyrad means by four arms is that they have two arms that only attack, plus their normal arms but can also be used to attack. Typically a race with claws cannot wield a weapon in the claw hand. With four arms this race can do both.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

If you want them to on pair with an aasimar (which are more powerful than standard races), then the race is probably fine if you just lower the natural armor to +1. Getting to claw without using up your hands is strong, but considering that aasimar is the benchmark...

For the alternate traits, glide is fine, but 35 ft is still too much.

Ninjaxenomorph wrote:
A clumsy fly speed isn't exactly going to get a first-level character many places, at least not out of combat. Most characters will have at most a +0 modifier, and that's assuming 18 Dex and no ACP. Any damage and the character has a good chance of plummeting.

Maneuverability is irrelevant. Having a fly speed at all is significant boon inaccessible to characters until level 5. It allows you to bypass many obstacles that would either require resources to overcome or would not be possible to overcome at all. At the very least, it allows you to bypass almost all obstacles and difficult terrain in every combat at-will. That's a big deal.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / Homebrew / Looking for some assistance hammering out a homebrew race All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002-2017 Paizo Inc.® | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours, Monday through Friday, 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM Pacific time.

Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, Starfinder, the Starfinder logo, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc. The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Legends, Pathfinder Online, Starfinder Adventure Path, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.