Iomandra Major Races

Last 3 Edits

18th Oct, 2017

  • Added info to: Eladrin re their houses (inc link to house Daeleth); Elves; Half-elves.

12th Sept, 2017

  • Changed the 5e D&D stats for eladrin (based upon latest Unearthed Arcana article).

7th Sept, 2017

  • Adjusted the Eladrin 5E D&D abilities.
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PLEASE NOTE: All text in white boxes is from Christopher Perkins' blog posts on the Wizards of the Coast website. Archive link.

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These are the races that are found in numbers in the central regions of the Dragon Isles, Arkhosia and Bael Nerath, or rule over another significant region.

Table of Contents
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DRAGONBORN

To a great extent, events on Iomandra seem to revolve around the affairs of dragonborn, especially those of Arkhosia. They rule the greatest empire—albeit a fading one—and have a difficult road ahead.

Rigid Caste System

Dragonborn renounce family ties and do not have surnames. They belong to one of the castes outlined under Arkhosia. Adventuring dragonborn are typically from the arcane, divine or martial castes. Even dragonborn not from Arkhosia tend to align their social structures around these castes.

Heirs to a Fallen Empire

Dragonborn were once the dominant and ruling race right across Iomandra. That has not been so since Io devastated the world, but they still rule over sizable parts of the Dragon Sea. Maru-Qet is in the hands of dragonborn with the mindsets of the old, whereas the Dragovar Dynasty has outlawed slavery. Others may regard dragonborn with suspicion or outright hatred, as they have been known as conquerors and slavers for many generations. Most have come to accept the dragonborn of Arkhosia and surrounding lands, but some grudges run deep. Dragonborn are typically proud of their past achievements and many would like to see the Dragovar return to this.

From what you know of Emperor Azunkhan IX, he’s not an evil tyrant. That said, he’s never won the hearts of the dragonborn people—no great victories in battle, no groundbreaking legislation, nothing.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Humans most likely. No real strong ties to other racial groups.
Enemies. Many, though not as strong these days (except in lands like Maru-Qet).

Alignment & Outlook

Driven, honour-bound, noble, perfectionist, proud, reliable, rooted in ancient history.
Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Save the Dragovar dynasty from a slow death, supplant the corrupt monarchy, lead the dragonborn nation of Arkhosia to some heretofore unknown destiny, join the Knights of Ardyn, spread faith in Bahamut, prove to the people of Nerath & Gar Morra that the days of slave-taking dragonborn are long gone, or crush the evil forces of Tiamat.

Classes & Concepts

Determined by their caste.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Realms & Regions

You are probably a citizen of the Dragovar Empire and live in Arkhosia. You could be an exile from there or a member of one of several small clans of dragonborn that survived the cataclysm and were stranded in other parts of the world. There are ghettos of dragonborn in Bael Nerath (namely in Whitestag, Stormhaven, Hillroost, Marckwild and Grekkenhar) and a few clans form an underclass in the dwarven lands of Gar Morra. (People from these two lands are still getting over the fact that dragonborn once ruled them and you may be viewed with suspicion or even scorn, but more willing to prove yourself).
Other possibilities are Sanghor (Tiamat-worshipping dragonborn that work with the ruling goblinoids as elite guards), or Maru-Quet (evil, city-state overlords, where slavery is still law).

Religion & Deities

Though Io is the chief god, few worship such a removed entity. Bahamut and Tiamat are the two favoured deities and followers of one are opposed to the other. Rare dragonborn may follow other deities from the Standard Pantheon (as in the 4E D&D Player's Handbook p20).


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

5E Race page.

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ELADRIN

The eladrin fled to the Feywild to escape slavery. However, many eladrin died when their rituals failed to transport the kingdom of Cendriane safely to the fey realm. Over the millennia, the eladrin have rebuilt their kingdom and mastered arcane magic. Two hundred years ago, eladrin began returning to Iomandra in small numbers, hoping to re-establish links to their past.

Denizens of the Feywild

You know that most eladrin and a few elves reside in the Feywild. The Feywild is a reflection of Iomandra before its continents sank into the sea. Consequently, land there is bountiful. Sharing this knowledge with the more expansionist nations of Iomandra would almost certainly lead to an invasion of the Feywild.
Roughly two centuries ago, eladrin spies returned to Iomandra to observe the changes there. They were shocked to discover that most of its lands had sunk beneath the sea and that the dragonborn dynasties of old were no longer a threat. A few families of eladrin have since rejoined the people of Iomandra, but they guard well the secrets of their new homeland for fear that knowledge of the Feywild’s abundant land might spur others to invade it.

Tied to the Seasons

Eladrin personality and moods are tied to the seasons. All actions are tied to their feelings which are reflected in the changing seasons. (See Wizards of the Coast Unearthed Arcana - Eladrin article).

House Loyalty

Practically every eladrin belongs to a house that are part family, part organisation, each with its own strengths and specialties. Whilst they were established by noble houses, an eladrin does not have to be a member of that family to belong to the house. In fact, it is quite common to change affiliation. If an eladrin wants to become an illusionist and a different house than the one they belong to is known for their illusionists, then that eladrin is usually encouraged to pursue their goals and change affiliation.
Known eladrin houses: Aergilean (on Marckwild); Daeleth (on Stormhaven); Lafrahd (on Marckwild); Ty'avel (on Marckwild).


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Humans, elves and half-elves of Bael Nerath.
Enemies. Standard - any races of evil nature.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E) and as outlined in Unearthed Arcana - Eladrin.

Possible Motivations for adventure

Explore Iomandra for lost eladrin who know nothing about the Feywild, quell threats of a Feywild invasion, establish an eladrin power base on Iomandra, establish an outpost or new barony for your house, or unearth arcane lore lost since the sinking of the continents.

Classes & Concepts

(List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.)

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E).

Realms & Regions

Several eladrin houses have been established in Bael Nerath of which you are likely a member. (There are no known houses on the islands of Clovencrag or Grekkenhar. Stormhaven has recently had one house relocated there in recent years). Most eladrin still dwell in the hidden magical city of Cendriane in the Feywild.

Religion & Deities

All people of Bael Nerath revere the Standard Pantheon (4E D&D Player's Handbook p20), but have several additional elder elven deities as part of their extended pantheon. (See 'Elven Pantheon' in the 3E D&D Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting p238, many of which also appear in the 5E D&D Player's Handbook p296. For detailed accounts of these deities, see 2E D&D Monster Mythology p21). Some eladrin may also honour arch fey of the Feywild.


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

Eladrin Traits

  • Ability Score Increase. Your Dexterity score increases by 2. Your Intelligence or your Charisma increases by 1 (your choice).
  • Bonus Proficiencies. You can choose 3 proficiencies from: Arcana, History, Nature, Performance, Persuasion, Bows (Simple + Martial), Long Blades (Simple), Short Blades (Simple + Martial), or a musical instrument group.
  • Darkvision. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can't discern colour in darkness, only shades of grey. Accustomed to twilight forests and the night sky, you have superior vision in dark and dim conditions.
  • Fey Ancestry. You have advantage on saving throws against being charmed, and magic cannot put you to sleep.
  • Fey Step. As in Wizards of the Coasts' Unearthed Article - Eladrin.
  • Shifting Seasons. As in Wizards of the Coasts' Unearthed Article - Eladrin.
  • Keen Senses. You have proficiency in the Perception skill.
  • Languages. Common and Elvish.
  • Trance. You do not need to sleep. Instead, you meditate deeply, entering a trance for 4 hours a day. After resting in this way, you gain the same benefit that a human does from 8 hours sleep. While meditating, you can dream after a fashion; such dreams are actually mental exercises that have become reflexive through years of practice.
  • Size. Medium.
  • Speed. Base speed is 30 feet.

Eladrin Flaws

  • Frail (Minor) OR Weak (Minor). Eladrin have slight builds.
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ELVES

Thousands of years ago, when Io sank the continents of Iomandra to punish his children, the elves were forced to leave their primeval forests and flee to high ground. They sought sanctuary in dwarf mountain strongholds and elevated human settlements. Present-day elves are scattered across the Dragon Sea, sharing the remaining land with their human and dragonborn neighbors, inhabiting forests wherever they are found, and seeding new ones.

Survivors

The elves of Iomandra see themselves as survivors. They have suffered at the hands of dragonborn and other empires of the past, they survived Io's wrath, and they continue to survive despite being split and fractured and having to endure living all kinds of wild terrain. But they have also managed to stay connected with other races, such as humans, who allied with them through the worst of times. Many elves now believe they have the best of both worlds: they can live in the wild, but are free to travel to and trade in permanent settlements without prejudice.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E. As wood elves for editions other than 4E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Humans, half-elves, eladrin and dwarves that all took them in.
Enemies. Standard races of evil.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E. As wood elves for editions other than 4E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Seek to learn more about the Feywild, search for clues about the elven kingdoms of the past, protect the remaining forests of Iomandra, or slaughter every last goblin in the Kingdom of Blood (see Sanghor).

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E. As wood elves for editions other than 4E).

Realms & Regions

Present-day elves have no kingdoms or nations. They are geographically tied to humans and frequently breed with them, creating half-elves. Most of these elves reside in Bael Nerath whose culture reflects a long-term relationship with elves, though several also live in Arkhosia.
Unknown to most, there are also painted wild elves in the deep wilds of Sanghor that fight a continual guerrilla war against the many evil humanoids of those islands.

Religion & Deities

All people of Bael Nerath, including the elves, revere the Standard Pantheon (4E D&D Player's Handbook p20), but have several additional elder elven deities as part of their extended pantheon. (See 'Elven Pantheon' in the 3E D&D Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting p238, many of which also appear in the 5E D&D Player's Handbook p296. For detailed accounts of these deities, see 2E D&D Monster Mythology p21).


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

As Wood Elf on our 5E D&D Races Page.

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HALF-ELVES

Elves and humans have co-existed in Bael Nerath and Arkhosia for a long time, hence half-elves are common, especially in Nerath where the culture is a true merging of human and elven lifestyles.

Best of Both Worlds

The half-elves of Iomandra are very well accepted into most societies. Their diplomatic skills and adaptability ensure they are valued even in lands where half-elves are rare. Half-elves suffer no prejudice in lands where humans and elves have dwelt alongside each other for thousands of years, such as in Nerath. In fact, having elven heritage is seen as a bit of a boon in most Nerathan communities. So where half-elves may suffer from being not fully elf or human in some settings, this is definitely not the case on Iomandra.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Elves, humans, Eladrin.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Seek to become an island magistrate or baron, unite the feuding baronies of Bael Nerath, save the Dragovar dynasty from the corruption consuming it, amass sufficient treasure to buy a ship, become a Sea King, avenge a slain parent, find a missing parent, find diplomatic (or more forceful) solutions between two warring barons, help another race become more freely integrated into the realm, or search the ruins of ancient human and elven kingdoms for lost relics tied to your diverse heritage.

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Realms & Regions

Most likely you were born in one of the baronies of Bael Nerath where elves and humans have intermixed freely for some time. Elves and humans also dwell throughout Arkhosia or maybe you have lived a life sailing the Dragon Sea.

Religion & Deities

All people of Bael Nerath revere the Standard Pantheon (4E D&D Player's Handbook p20), but have several additional elder elven deities as part of their extended pantheon. (See 'Elven Pantheon' in the 3E D&D Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting p238, many of which also appear in the 5E D&D Player's Handbook p296. For detailed accounts of these deities, see 2E D&D Monster Mythology p21).


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

As Half-Elf on our 5E D&D Races Page.

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HALFLINGS

In ancient times, the halflings of Iomandra were nomadic river-folk. They plied the rivers between the elf, dwarf, and human nations, trading goods and information. Like many races, they were conquered and enslaved by the dragonborn until they finally won their freedom. Then the continents sank, and the halflings traded their riverboats for larger seafaring vessels. Although some halflings have settled on island shores, a great many ply the Dragon Sea, trading goods and information as their ancestors did millennia ago.

Adaptable & Easy-Going

As a halfling, you do not dwell on the past. You don't begrudge the dragonborn for ancient evils and are open-minded when meeting all sorts of races. In this sense, you judge people on their actions, not preconceptions. You have seen the worst and the best in the many races you have encountered in your travels.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Anyone open to trade and that behaves in a tolerable manner.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Join the Deeplantern Guild, amass sufficient treasure to buy a ship, chart the rivers of the Hollowdark, explore new islands, draw the most complete map of Iomandra the world has ever seen, find lost treasures of new trade resources, clear a trade route from a dangerous monster, open a new trade route, write an epic saga, or simply, lift the spirits of your adventurous colleagues.

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Realms & Regions

Most halflings live at sea (Dragon Sea), but some have settled the ports of Arkhosia and Bael Nerath.

Religion & Deities

Whilst many halflings do favour members of the Standard Pantheon (5e D&D Player's Handbook p20), they also honour a group of unique gods. (Use eastern European Dark Age deities - Dragon Magazine #290 - Red Sails Campaign p47).


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

As Lightfoot Halfling on our 5E D&D Races Page.

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HUMANS

Arguably the most territorial and pernicious race, humans are masters of their own destinies. Still, many of them feel they deserve better. Once slaves of the ancient dragonborn dynasties, humans won their freedom, after considerable bloodshed, only to have their nations and kingdoms wiped away by the cataclysm that sank the continents. Since then, they’ve been colonizing as much of the remaining land as they can, hoping to one day become as powerful as the empires of old.

Secondary Citizens

Unlike in a lot of settings, humans are not the dominant or even most populous race. Iomandra is a draconic world and was created mainly for the children of Io: dragons, dragonborn, etc. Like humans elsewhere, those of Iomandra are steadfast, adaptable and determined and have carved out their own kingdoms following the cataclysm, but these do not rival the Dragovar Dynasty or the achievements the dragonborn have accomplished in the past. Maybe the world is now ready for humans to dominate… who knows?


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Allies & Enemies

Allies. Half-elves, Eladrin, Elves. Humans typically get along with most other races, including the dragonborn.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Seek to become an island magistrate or baron, the ruler of the unified kingdom of Bael Nerath, a legendary dragon-slayer, a ship captain, a Sea King with command of an armada, a high-ranking member of the Deeplantern Guild, a noble Knight of Ardyn, a wizard with the power to raise continents, or the leader of an influential guild or religious order.

You might try to cleanse the islands of Bael Nerath of undead, learn strange powers from the verrik, broker an alliance with the kreen, learn more arcane mysteries from your elven and eladrin allies or fight off dragon overlords from islands that rightfully belong to the free people of Iomandra.

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Realms & Regions

The main region of the humans is Bael Nerath, but quite a lot live in Arkhosia too.
Other possibilities include Maru-Qet (where they are a major race, but underclass citizens). Humans with swarthy skin are the dominant race of Kotar, but these humans are considered nothing short of pirates. (In truth they are more generous with their takings and only oppose Arkhosia because of its corruption).

Religion & Deities

Being widespread religious affiliation is more determined by one's homeland. That still means most humans follow the Standard Pantheon (4E D&D Player's Handbook p20). Humans native to Bael Nerath have several additional elder elven deities as part of their extended pantheon. (See 'Elven Pantheon' in the 3E D&D Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting p238, many of which also appear in the 5E D&D Player's Handbook p296. For detailed accounts of these deities, see 2E D&D Monster Mythology p21).


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

As Human on our 5E D&D Race Page.

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TIEFLINGS

Like the eladrin, the humans of Bael Turath took desperate measures to escape the tyranny of the ancient dragonborn dynasties. Unlike the eladrin, however, they chose confrontation over escape. They forged infernal pacts, transformed themselves into tieflings, and gained vast eldritch power. Still, their newfound “gifts” weren’t enough to save the empire from the furious onslaught of the Arkhosian armies. The tieflings who survived were made into slaves. In time, they gained their freedom, but the empire of Bael Turath has fallen into legend, though a new tiefling empire is on the rise.

House Affiliation

Tiefling society revolves around extended family units known as Houses. These are more like affiliations rather than true families. Houses might operate like wealthy, ruling noble families, influential merchants, machiavellian crime mobs, or more likely, a combination of all three. Competition between houses is strong and all tieflings tend to belong to one of these houses. Honor and service to one's House is regarded above all duties. Lone tieflings seek out other affiliations to take the place of a House. It is inherent in a tiefling to belong to a group: likely a psychological holdover from the pacts their ancestors made.

Arcane Heritage

Magic plays a big part in tiefling society. It is integrated into all facets of life. Even tieflings that are capable warriors are often trained to use magic to enhance their fighting (and thus they have a lot of mage-blades in their society). Arcane pacts actually created the tiefling race. Tieflings do not lament their ancestors for what they did: tieflings accept what they are - heirs of brave people that did what they had to to survive. They understand that their heritage may not endear them to other races, but that does not concern tieflings in the slightest. Many even use this uneasiness to their advantage.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Allies & Enemies

Enemies. Most people regard the tieflings as an enemy.

Alignment & Outlook

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Possible Motivations for adventure

Seek to learn more about your noble family by exploring the sunken ruins of Bael Turath, restore the empire of Bael Turath to its former glory, bring ruin to the Dragovar dynasty, usurp command of a Sea King’s armada, or help other tieflings who have become soft in their ways.

Or, maybe you would like to rule your own island in the name of your House, discover new arcane powers, quest to follow in the footsteps of one of your ancestors, or to prove that not all tieflings are evil.

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

Standard. (D&D Player's Handbook 4E & 5E).

Realms & Regions

Although the odd tiefling adventurer may be found abroad, most tieflings live in Serran, within reach of their former home, Bael Turath, where they search for hidden arcane secrets.

Religion & Deities

The worship of deities is outlawed in tiefling society. Houses alone, including past members, are all that is to be honoured. So, in a sense, ancestor worship is the religion of the tieflings.


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

(We have not done Tieflings for 5E yet. Use 5E D&D Player's Handbook, but will need to add a Drawback or two and provide choices for skills).

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TEMPLATE

RACE NAME

Intro paragraph. Very general statements that summarises the race.

Various Flavour Headings

Try to hit on 2-4 main points that best represent the race and give them catchy headings. These can inc notes on appearance, culture, common personality traits/quirks, outlook, likes/dislikes, what they are good at, where they live, myths, religion, what might lead them to adventure, where they fit into society, etc.


Common Traits

Age & Appearance

How they age. Height ; Weight ; Eye colour ; Hair ; etc.

Allies & Enemies

List.

Alignment & Outlook

Typical alignment. Common personality traits (like 4E) or see 3E MCAU for 'Outlook'.

Classes & Concepts

List common archetypes and actual classes backgrounds and subclasses for D&D.

Language & Names

State main language spoken. Types of names. Example names.

Realms & Regions

List lands where they are found in this setting.

Religion & Deities

State which type they follow and individual gods if common.


GAME MECHANICS

Dungeons & Dragons 5E

Race Traits

  • Name. Desc.

Race Drawbacks

  • Name. Desc.

Bashed and Borrowed

Abilities

  • Ability that starts at d8: Name. Wild Card (race name) also begin with a d8 in one other ability from the following choices: List.
  • Double the Advancement cost at character creation to raise: List Abilities or any of their Specialties at character creation.
  • Languages: Auto start with d8 in List Languages. Other languages must be purchased as separate Abilities.
  • Talent Tree Access: List those with free access.

Specialties

Race name gain 5 extra Advances to spend on the following Specialties:

  • (Ability): Indiv Specialties

Racial Traits

  • Name. Desc.

Racial Drawbacks

  • Name. Desc.

Cypher System

Characteristics

  • Name. Desc.
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