The Shackled City
Shackled City Traits
If you count Cauldron or one of the surrounding villages or towns as your home, I am allowing the option of choosing ONE of the following traits during character creation. If you do, you may also take up to ONE trait from the Unearthed Arcana Traits list. The local traits are as follows:
Child of Jzadirune
One of your ancestors lived in Jzadirune at the time the Vanishing (which I will explain to you if you choose this trait) struck. You are especially resistant to diseases, but find the prospect of becoming sick yourself horrifying.
Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on all saving throws made to resist the effects of disease.
Drawback: You suffer a –2 morale penalty on saving throws against fear while in the ruins of Jzadirune, or when fighting creatures that are diseased or can inflict disease with a spell, supernatural ability, or extraordinary ability.
Roleplaying Ideas: Your parents told you harrowing stories about the Vanishing, and your dreams are haunted by visions in which you catch the disease and slowly fade away.
One of your ancestors was a half-fiend. As a result, you carry some of the taint with you.
Benefit: Regardless of your actual alignment, spells and spell-like abilities with the evil descriptor treat you as if your alignment were evil. Magic items are similarly fooled. An unholy blight spell, for example, won’t damage you, no matter what your actual alignment is.
Drawback: Regardless of your actual alignment, spells and spell-like abilities with the good descriptor treat you as if your alignment were evil. Magic items are similarly fooled. A holy word spell, for example, will harm you even if you are good aligned.
Roleplaying Ideas: You are moody, gloomy, and have a short temper.
Your dreams are haunted by strange visions of tortured landscapes and deformed monsters. In some of these dreams, you are the deformed monster!
Benefit: You are used to fatigue, and suffer no penalties when you become fatigued. When you become exhausted, you are instead treated as if you are fatigued.
Drawback: You suffer a –2 penalty on saving throws against effects that cause madness or insanity, and on saving throws against sleep effects. If you are normally immune to sleep effects, you lose that immunity.
Roleplaying Ideas: You are always tired, though not to the point of fatigue. You tend to nod off when bored, and sometimes find it difficult to remember minor, relatively unimportant bits of information.
You are descended from a tribe of indigenous peoples who died out as a separate tribe many centuries ago. Still, this tribe’s penchant for necromantic magic runs in your blood.
Benefit: You automatically stabilize if reduced to negative hit points. When you take damage from negative energy, you reduce the actual damage you take by 5 points.
Drawback: Healing magic works poorly on you. Whenever you regain hit points from magical healing, you gain 1 less point of healing per character level you possess, to a minimum of one point per die rolled.
Roleplaying Ideas: You are somewhat morbid and intrigued by death and undeath, even if these interests are purely to learn more of your enemies.
Mark of the Beast
One of your ancestors was a lycanthrope. Select a predatory animal of your choice; that animal feels a mystic bond with you.
Benefit: Animals have a strange reticence when they attack you, and suffer a –2 penalty on all attack rolls made against you. If you have the wild empathy ability, you gain a +1 bonus on wild empathy checks.
Drawback: You suffer a –4 penalty to all saving throws made to resist lycanthropy, and take +1 point of damage from attacks made by silver weapons.
Roleplaying Ideas: You have a curious animal magnetism that is at once intriguing and disturbing. Your manners might be a bit crude, but you’re loyal to your friends.
You were born into a noble family.
Benefit: You start play with an additional 200 gp, and gain +1 bonus on all Diplomacy and Intimidate checks made against citizens of Cauldron or the nearby villages. Certain NPCs in this campaign may react more favorably to your presence.
Drawback: You are well known and recognizable, and suffer a –4 penalty on Disguise rolls made against citizens of Cauldron or the nearby villages. Certain NPCs in this campaign may react more poorly to your presence.
Roleplaying Ideas: You might be haughty, impatient, or condescending to others. You might spend money frivolously, believing that there’ll always be more income to be had.
You’ve led a particularly tough life. Perhaps you’re an orphan, or maybe you suffered some sort of traumatic experience as a child. Whatever the cause, your childhood experiences have left you jumpy and haunted.
Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on Initiative checks.
Drawback: Your experiences have left your mind less able to deal with trauma, and as a result you suffer a –1 penalty on all Will saves.
Roleplaying Ideas: You are quick to anger, jumpy, and possibly even a bit hyperactive. You’re prone to feelings of paranoia and unfounded fear.
Scion of Surabar
You are a descendant of the man who discovered Cauldron, helped settle the region, and aided in the defeat of an ancient demonic army.
Benefit: Pride for your lineage girds your mind and soul. You gain a +2 morale bonus on saving throws against fear, death effects, and insanity or confusion.
Drawback: Demons that encounter you in this region (not those that you might fight on other planes) can instinctively sense your lineage and connection to their old enemy, and gain a +1 morale bonus on attack rolls and weapon damage rolls when fighting you.
Roleplaying Ideas: You are proud of your heritage, and quick to anger if another mocks it. You find demons intolerable, and some might see you as haughty or imperious.
Touched in the Head
You’re a little crazy.
Benefit: Your mind is disorganized and chaotic. You gain a +1 bonus on all saving throws against mind-affecting effects, save for those effects that cause confusion or insanity.
Drawback: Your inability to concentrate for long makes you suffer a –1 penalty on all Wisdom-based skill checks.
Roleplaying Ideas: You have a number of strange quirks (whistling off-key, eating raw meat, a nervous tic, a tendency to scream at odd moments, and so on) that can make you difficult to get along with.
One of your ancestors was a half-black dragon. You have some sort of distinctively draconic feature, be it reptilian eyes, scales on the backs of your hands, or tiny vestigial horns on your head.
Benefit: You gain a +4 bonus on all saving throws against acid effects, a +2 bonus on Swim checks, and a +1 bonus on Listen and Spot checks.
Drawback: Your body isn’t quite as limber as it should be. You take a –1 penalty on Reflex saves.
Roleplaying Ideas: You have an intensity about everything you do, and your emotions are powerful and often difficult for you to control.