shifter

SHIFTER

THE BESTIAL AND PREDATORY “WERETOUCHED” are descended from humans, elves, and lycanthropes. Shifters cannot fully change shape but can take on animalistic features—a state they call shifting. Shifters have evolved into a unique race that breeds true. They have a distinct culture with its own traditions and identity.

Forced to flee the persecution of their kind during the rise of the Crisillyri nation, shifters have formed great tribal communities throughout the wilds of Ber and Elfaivar. While most despise the stink of human cities and industry, some shifters dwell on the fringe of civilization, earning their keep as trappers, hunters, fishers, trackers, guides, and military scouts.

The personality and behavior of shifters are influenced by their animal natures. Many are boorish and crude, while others are quiet, furtive, and solitary. Just as most lycanthropes are carnivores, shifters have a predatory personality and think of most activities in terms of hunting and prey. They view survival as a challenge, striving to be self-reliant, adaptable, and resourceful.

Shifters are basically humanoid in shape, but their bodies are exceptionally lithe. They often move in a crouched posture, springing and leaping while their companions walk normally alongside. Their faces have a bestial cast, with wide, flat noses, large eyes and heavy eyebrows, pointed ears, and long sideburns (in both sexes). Their forearms and lower legs grow long hair, and the hair of their heads is thick.

SHIFTER CHARACTERS

Shapechanger Subtype: Shifters are humanoids with the shapechanger subtype.

+2 Dexterity, +2 Wisdom, –2 Intelligence: Shifters are wily and agile, but their fundamental bestial nature detracts from their reasoning ability.

Shifting (Su): A shifter can tap into her lycanthropic heritage to gain short bursts of physical power. Once per day, a shifter can enter a state that is superficially similar to a barbarian rage. Each shifter has one of six shifter traits—characteristics that manifest themselves when a character is shifting. Each shifter trait provides a +2 bonus to one of the character’s physical ability scores (Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution) and grants some other advantage as well. Shifter traits are described in the following section.

Shifting is a free action and lasts for a number of rounds equal to 3 + the shifter’s Con modifier. (If a shifter trait or other effect increases the character’s Con modifier, use the newly improved modifier.) A shifter can take shifter feats to improve this ability.

Every shifter feat a character takes increases the duration of shifting by 1 round. For every two shifter feats a character takes, the number of times per day she can tap into the ability increases by one. So, a character with two shifter feats can shift two times per day (instead of the usual one), and each use of the ability lasts for a number of rounds equal to 5 (instead of 3) + the shifter’s Con modifier.

Shifting, though related to and developed from lycanthropy, is neither an affliction nor a curse. It is not passed on by bite or claw attacks, and a shifter can’t be cured—shifting is a natural ability for the race.

Low-Light Vision: Shifters can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. They retain the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions.

Athletic: A shifter’s animalistic heritage enhances many of her physical skills. +2 racial bonus on Acrobatics and Climb checks.

Automatic Languages: Common. Bonus Languages: Common, Elven, Gnome, Halfling, Orc, and Sylvan.

Shifter Traits

Each shifter has one of the following special traits, which is selected when a character is created and cannot be changed thereafter.

Beasthide (Su): While shifting, a beasthide shifter gains a +2 bonus to Constitution and natural armor that provides a +2 bonus to AC.

Longtooth (Su): While shifting, a longtooth shifter gains a +2 bonus to Strength and grows fangs that can be used as a natural weapon, dealing 1d6 points of damage (plus Str modifier and an additional +1 for every four character levels she has) with a successful bite attack. She cannot attack more than once per round with her bite, even if her base attack bonus is high enough to give her multiple attacks. She can use her bite as a secondary attack (taking a –5 penalty on her attack roll and adding only half Str modifier to damage) while wielding a weapon.

Cliffwalk (Su): While shifting, a cliffwalk shifter gains a +2 bonus to Dexterity and has a climb speed of 20 feet.

Razorclaw (Su): While shifting, a razorclaw shifter gains a +2 bonus to Strength and grows claws that can be used as natural weapons. These claws deal 1d4 points of damage (plus Str modifier and an additional +1 for every four character levels she has) with each successful attack. She can attack with one claw as a standard action or with two claws as a full attack action (as a primary natural weapon). She can use a claw as a secondary attack (taking a –5 penalty on her attack roll and adding only half Str modifier to damage) while wielding a weapon.

Longstride (Su): While shifting, a longstride shifter gains a +2 bonus to Dexterity and a bonus of +10 feet to her base land speed.

Swiftwing (Su): While shifting, a swiftwing shifter gains a +2 bonus to Dexterity. His arms grow leathery flaps of skin like a bat’s which grant a fly speed of 20’ (Poor maneuverability). Not true flight, the shifter can’t ascend on his own power and normally descends 5’ for every 50’ of horizontal movement. While gliding, a shifter cannot use his hands except to carry light objects in each hand. A shifter cannot glide while carrying more than a heavy load or while wearing anything heavier than light armor.

Truedive (Su): While shifting, a truedive shifter gains +2 Constitution and a swim speed of 30 feet. Having a swim speed gives him a +8 racial bonus to Swim checks. A Truedive shifter can also hold his breath equal to 5 x his Constitution score before he risks drowning or suffocating. A truedive shifter retains the ability to hold his breath even when he isn’t shifting.

Wildhunt (Su): While shifting, a wildhunt shifter gains a +2 bonus to Constitution and the scent ability. This ability allows the shifter to detect approaching enemies, sniff out hidden foes, and track by sense of smell. A wildhunt shifter can identify familiar odors just as a human does familiar sights. When not shifting, a wildhunt shifter gains a +2 bonus on Survival checks due to the lingering effects of the scent ability.

Shifter Feats

Weretouched Master, a shifter-specific prestige class

shifter

Zeitgeist Jim_Mount