Does Racial Heritage grant you the racial subtype(s) of your chosen race?


Rules Questions


3 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

This generally seems to be how people play the feat, but I have yet to see it officially clarified.

For example, does racial heritage (half-elf) mean you count as an elf as well, or just a half-elf? Does a human with racial heritage Elf count as a half-elf? Does a human with racial heritage frost giant qualify for ancestral enmity?

I'd love to see some sort of consensus, or (hopefully) a writer/FAQ answer.


Bumping, because I've yet to get a single reply.


I think this is FAQable, though unlikely to ever get answered. Initially I thought it gave you the subtype (since that is generally what is required, and what differentiates between most of the PC races), but looking at the feat it doesn't do that; you are just treated as the race.

That creates a bit of ambiguity for the giant case. For the Elf/Half-Elf, I don't think there is any ambiguity; you would be treated as a half elf, but not have a half-elf's Elf Blood racial trait, so you would not be treated as an elf, regardless of whether you get the half-elf subtype, or are just "treated as a half-elf" for all purposes.

Irrelevant in this particular subforum (rules); I'd say the base way to play the feat is by giving the appropriate humanoid-specific subtype; giant for most giants, half-elf for half-elves, elf for elves, etc.


You qualify as that race, but you do not have the properties of that race.

  • Racial Heritage (half-elf) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "half-elf" but not "elf", "elf subtype", etc.
  • Racial Heritage (elf) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "elf" or "is an elf" but not "elf subtype".
  • Racial Heritage (frost giant) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "frost giant" but not "giant subtype".

    Note that this means favored enemy (humanoid (elf)) won't affect a human with Racial Heritage (elf), nor will the bane property of a +1 elf bane morningstar.


  • So, do Aasimar with the Scion of Humanity trait not qualify for feats which require the character to be Human?


    PRD link to the feat

    feat text wrote:

    Racial Heritage

    The blood of a non-human ancestor flows in your veins.

    Prerequisite: Human.

    Benefit: Choose another humanoid race. You count as both human and that race for any effects related to race. For example, if you choose dwarf, you are considered both a human and a dwarf for the purpose of taking traits, feats, how spells and magic items affect you, and so on.

    I'm not seeing why Favored Enemy wouldn't apply while a spell that targets by type, such as Named Bullet, specifically would. Though as written you do not get the type, you are still treated as that race for any effect related to race. Only that specific race though, so choosing one of the half-races wouldn't act as taking this feat twice, since half-races counting as multiple races is a specific racial ability of theirs.

    .Hate9 wrote:
    So, do Aasimar with the Scion of Humanity trait not qualify for feats which require the character to be Human?

    PRD link to the Racial Ability

    racial ability wrote:
    Scion of Humanity: Some aasimars' heavenly ancestry is extremely distant. An aasimar with this racial trait counts as an outsider (native) and a humanoid (human) for any effect related to race, including feat prerequisites and spells that affect humanoids. She can pass for human without using the Disguise skill. This racial trait replaces the Celestial language and alters the native subtype.

    Its text refers to any effect related to race, and specifically allows feats. You count as a Humanoid Human and an Outsider Native.


    What I mean is isn't Humanoid(Human) different from Human (the race)?


    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    .Hate9 wrote:
    What I mean is isn't Humanoid(Human) different from Human (the race)?

    Nope. All humans have the humanoid type and human subtype. There is no such thing as a human without the type.


    blahpers wrote:

    You qualify as that race, but you do not have the properties of that race.

  • Racial Heritage (half-elf) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "half-elf" but not "elf", "elf subtype", etc.
  • Racial Heritage (elf) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "elf" or "is an elf" but not "elf subtype".
  • Racial Heritage (frost giant) allows you to use options with the prerequisite "frost giant" but not "giant subtype".

    Note that this means favored enemy (humanoid (elf)) won't affect a human with Racial Heritage (elf), nor will the bane property of a +1 elf bane morningstar.

  • While favored enemy might be up in the air as it would be under the "and so on" part, that Bane morning star is a magic item and clearly would still effect you.


    You are treated as having the subtype but you don't gain anything that you would normally get from having the subtype. So, if you had racial Heritage (Orc) you would be able to take the born alone feat but you would not get darkvision or light sensativity.


    LeMoineNoir wrote:


    Its text refers to any effect related to race, and specifically allows feats. You count as a Humanoid Human and an Outsider Native.

    I think you missed my point. What I mean is that (by your logic) a feat which requires the Human race would not be available to an Aasimar with the Scion of Humanity trait, because the trait grants the Human subtype, not the race.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Getting the subtype gives you the race; it is a one way gate. If you have the subtype you are the race, so you "are treated as that race." The reverse, however is not true; just because you are "treated as the race" doesn't mean that you have the subtype.

    That's because (in Pathfinder) the race is defined by the subtype, not the other way around.


    merpius wrote:

    Getting the subtype gives you the race; it is a one way gate. If you have the subtype you are the race, so you "are treated as that race." The reverse, however is not true; just because you are "treated as the race" doesn't mean that you have the subtype.

    That's because (in Pathfinder) the race is defined by the subtype, not the other way around.

    Can I get a rules citation for that?

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