Archetypes show how mixed heritages should be handled.


Prerelease Discussion


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I just finished reading up on the archetype mechanic, and all I kept thinking the whole time was that its a perfect example of how mixed heritages (half-elf, half-orc, sylph, undine, etc) should be handled mechanically. Instead of discrete races, 'elf-blooded' should be the ancestry version of an archetype - a heritage feat that adds to the choices you can make for ancestry feats (just as an archetype's dedication feat adds to the choices you can make for class feats).

Silver Crusade

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Hard pass, I want to actually play those Ancestries, not another Ancestry that had to give up their first Heritage Feat in order to play them.

Granted I’m not opposed to Elf/Fey/Demon Blooded Heritage style feats existing as well, those could be fun. I just don’t want them to replace actual Ancestries.


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the 'elf-blooded' heritage feat could certainly provide a specific benefit beyond just opening up the other ancestry's feat selections, just as the archetype dedication feat still provides a benefit. What this does do is provide the ability for non-human based half-breeds, as well as open up more room for discrete races (Kobold and Orc) in the core 8 ancestries.

I fail to see how it would be mechanically different to play a 'Human with the elf-blooded heritage feat' than it is to play a 'half-elf'. I'm guessing your aversion to it is more traditional than practical.


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Seems like an entirely practical objection to me. Wanting to play a race usually means wanting to play a race from the start, not magically transforming from something else to what you actually want to play several levels (and feats) later.

I'm not even sold on using feats to buy back racial abilities for the core races, but 'you have to be human before you become a half-elf, tiefling or <whatever> seems right out. Ancestry and identity feels really unsatisfactory as a matter of training-through-combat-experience. And has... unfortunate... implications.


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Yeap, im with rysky and voss. Also, I dont want everything to be compatible with everything else. /not signed

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Rysky wrote:

Hard pass, I want to actually play those Ancestries, not another Ancestry that had to give up their first Heritage Feat in order to play them.

Granted I’m not opposed to Elf/Fey/Demon Blooded Heritage style feats existing as well, those could be fun. I just don’t want them to replace actual Ancestries.

Definitely same. Though I might leave elf off that last list... I'd probably save that concept for bloodlines that are more magically infused*.

(*Other than orc, which apparently has the same supernatural potency as outsiders, at least when it comes to creating sorcerers. And all because of "ancient orc warlords". Seriously**, elf sorcerer bloodline when?)

(**I'm not bitter.)


One of the things that makes PF2 archetypes work is that they cost class feats, which are a thing one gets a lot throughout their career. I don't think this will work quite as well with ancestry feats which are apparently half as numerous.

But a thought occurs- some ancestry feats are heritage feats, which can only be taken at level 1. I don't think there are any issues with having later ancestry feat require a specific heritage, so these can kind of function like archetypes.

Shadow Lodge

Kalindlara wrote:
(Seriously, elf sorcerer bloodline when?)

Arcane Sage bloodline.


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Kalindlara wrote:
Rysky wrote:

Hard pass, I want to actually play those Ancestries, not another Ancestry that had to give up their first Heritage Feat in order to play them.

Granted I’m not opposed to Elf/Fey/Demon Blooded Heritage style feats existing as well, those could be fun. I just don’t want them to replace actual Ancestries.

Definitely same. Though I might leave elf off that last list... I'd probably save that concept for bloodlines that are more magically infused*.

(*Other than orc, which apparently has the same supernatural potency as outsiders, at least when it comes to creating sorcerers. And all because of "ancient orc warlords". Seriously**, elf sorcerer bloodline when?)

(**I'm not bitter.)

What about fancy humans instead of fancy orcs?

Sovereign Court

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The Sideromancer wrote:
What about fancy humans instead of fancy orcs?

*beats head against wall*


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yeah, I'd much prefer the ancestries for those to be actual, separate things rather than something you just tack on to another race.

Although an ancestry feat kind of thing could be neat for people who want a touch of that ancestry without actually being the ancestry. (Great-granny was an aasimar!) That'd be pretty nifty, actually. If that doesn't end up being an official thing, I might have to whip some up.

Shadow Lodge

I would love having some kind of option for combining ancestries in a flexible manner.

I've never been a fan of the fact that a dwarven, elven, and human aasimar are mechanically identical. I've also seen interest in playing more unusual humanoid hybrids than just human-elves and human-orcs, including elf-orcs and gnome-halflings. And then there's adoption (which may already be in the works due to the designation of biological Heritage feats as separate from cultural ancestry).

Granted, some of the more common hybrids might still warrant distinct ancestries - human half-elves and half-orcs in particular - because they have developed strong cultural elements separate from either parent race.


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Wouldn't the way to manage Dwarven, Gnomish, etc Aasimars is just to allow Aasimars to take non-heritage ancestry feats from some other ancestry? Just do this for all the ancestries where you generally are not raised by someone of that ancestry.


I'm personally a fan of how the system will let you make "sub races" without a lot of extra tracking and book space.

Players can have their whisper gnomes and so on fairly easily, and without a lot of setup work. But, room for expansion!


I think people totally missed my points on this suggestion.

Nothing about a 'Human w/ Elf-blooded heritage' would be different that what is currently described as 'Half-elf'. And I don't, honestly, know where it was read that I said it was.


Voss wrote:

Seems like an entirely practical objection to me. Wanting to play a race usually means wanting to play a race from the start, not magically transforming from something else to what you actually want to play several levels (and feats) later.

I'm not even sold on using feats to buy back racial abilities for the core races, but 'you have to be human before you become a half-elf, tiefling or <whatever> seems right out. Ancestry and identity feels really unsatisfactory as a matter of training-through-combat-experience. And has... unfortunate... implications.

The heritage feat is taken at 1st level (only) - not 'several levels (and feats) later.'


Good? But that still suggests that before you became an adventurer and got that first feat, you were something else. Which is a problem for people who do prequels and level 'zero' pre-campaign preludes.

Mechanically, it still doesn't offer any advantages to just writing up a different race and not setting the heritage feat on fire for a race change.

Silver Crusade

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If you want to do a level 0 game, I think* that's going to be rather easy in PF2e. You get things from your ancestry (including that ancestry/heritage feat) and background, but not class.
That leaves you with some proficiencies, hitpoints and not much more, but that could be enough.

* We will see that better after August 2nd.

Silver Crusade

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CraziFuzzy wrote:

I think people totally missed my points on this suggestion.

Nothing about a 'Human w/ Elf-blooded heritage' would be different that what is currently described as 'Half-elf'. And I don't, honestly, know where it was read that I said it was.

This is simply false.

Under your proposed method I would have to play a Human and spend my only Heritage Feat in order to play a "Human with some amount of Elf blood".

Whereas currently (and basically how it is in other editions) I can just play a half-Elf without having to jump through any amount of hoops. And I also have my Heritage Feat that I can spend on something I want.


I could see each race having a descendant feat and an adopted feat, so you pick two descendant feats (mother, father) and then either an adopted feat (I'm orc on my father's side and elf on my mother's but was raised by halflings from the age of four on) or a basic feat from one of your descendant races.

This still doesn't quite allow 6-breed mutts but it can mix a lot of cultures in a small area. If you pick dwarf for both parents and were raised dwarf, all three feats would be dwarven in nature and you'd be very Dwarvish. The feats with the adopted trait would not give physical changes, like the enhanced perception of elves, but would give things like elven weapon training that don't rely on the physical body and DNA of a race.You could still take elven weapon training using descendant feats, but not the other way around.

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