Heritage of Heroes

Gemborn Dragons

Gem Dragonborn Traits

Some Dragonborn come from the rare lines of the Gem Dragons.

Draconic Ancestry: When you choose a gem dragon for your Draconic Ancestry you gain the Draconic Presence and Condition traits appropriate for your ancestry, as defined in Table 1. These traits replace Breath Weapon and Damage Resistance traits.

Draconic Presence. Instead of a breath weapon, you can use your action to exert a supernatural presence. When you use your draconic presence, creatures within 15 feet of you make a Wisdom saving throw with a DC equal to 8 + your Charisma modifier + your proficiency bonus. Starting at 6th level, you may select which creatures are affected by your presence.

After you use your draconic presence, you can’t use it again until you complete a short or long rest.

Condition Resistance. You have advantage on saving throws to resist spells and effects that impose status conditions, determined by your draconic ancestry.

Table 1: Draconic Ancestry
Dragon Condition Resistance Draconic Presence
Amethyst Charmed Soothing Presence
Crystal Blinded Blinding Presence
Emerald Deafened Mesmerizing Presence
Sapphire Frieghtened Grounding Presence
Topax Exhaustion Frightful Presence

Soothing Presence. Each creature within 15 feet that is aware of you must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be affected by the calm emotions spell (both effects) for 1 minute. The effect ends if a creature’s saving throw is successful, the effect is dispelled, or you attack that creature or its allies.

Blinding Presence. Each creature within 15 feet that can see you must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be blinded for 1 minute. A creature can repeat this saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.

Mesmerizing Presence. Each creature within 15 feet that can see you must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or become charmed for 1 minute. A creature can repeat this saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.

Grounding Presence. Each creature within 15 feet must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or fall prone. Flying creatures in this radius are pulled from the air and fall prone when they reach the ground. Frightful Presence. Each creature within 15 feet that is aware of you must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.

Variant: Breath Weapon and Damage Resistance

Your draconic ancestry grants you a damaging breath weapon and resistance to that damage type.

This replaces your Draconic Presence and Condition Resistance feature, making your racial features more like a dragonborn of chromatic or metallic heritage.

When you use your breath weapon, each creature in the area of the exhalation must make a Constitution saving throw. The DC for this saving throw equals 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus. A creature takes 2d6 damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful one. The damage increases to 3d6 at 6th level, 4d6 at 11th level, and 5d6 at 16th level.

After you use your breath weapon, you can’t use it again until you complete a short or long rest.

Table 2: Variant Draconic Ancestry
Dragon Damage Type Breath Weapon
Amethyst Force 5-by-30-ft. line
Crystal Radiant 5-by-30-ft. line
Emerald Thunder 15-ft. cone
Sapphire Thunder 15-ft. cone
Topax Cold 5-by-30-ft. line


Elemental Gearforged

Gearforged in Midgard were originally crafted by wealthy humans and dwarves as ways to survive after death, but some are animated with the life force of elementals to serve as soldiers, butlers, and laborers. Instead of undergoing a soulforging ritual, elemental gearforged are created through a spiritbinding that reaches into the Elemental Planes themselves.

Elemental Gearforged Traits

Instead of your racial Ability Score Increase, you instead may choose one of the following feats. Traditional gearforged may augment their soul gem with an elemental core by undergoing a spiritbinding ritual (see below) to gain the benefits of one of these feats.

Wavesteel Core

You bear the power of elemental water in the core of your being. This ever-shifting power grants you advantage on saving throws against damage-dealing spells. Additionally, you can cast create or destroy water three times per day.

Ironflare Core

Within your iron heart is the burning essence of a fire elemental. Its chaotic power explodes whenever you score a critical hit with a spell attack that deals fire damage or a melee weapon attack, increasing the damage dealt by 1d6 fire damage. Additionally, you know the produce flame cantrip. Constitution is your spellcasting ability for this spell.

Bronzestone Core

A core of dwarven bronze surrounds the mountain-shaking power of your elemental heart. Whenever you take the Dodge action, a layer of stone covers your body, granting you resistance to nonmagical bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage until the beginning of your next turn. Additionally, you have advantage on Strength saving throws to resist being moved or knocked prone.

Stormcrystal Core

Your elemental core is made of cloudy crystal that churns internally with black stormclouds. Whenever you fall, you may cast the feather fall spell on yourself as a reaction. Additionally, you know the shocking grasp cantrip. Constitution is your spellcasting ability for this spell.

The Ritual of Spiritbinding

Similar to the soulforging ritual that gives life to many gearforged, elemental gearforged are imbued with life through the ritual of spiritbinding. A spiritbinder conjures an elemental and forces it to bond with a rune-etched core inside the construct’s chest.

The spell is available to wizards and clerics but cannot be added to a wizard’s spellbook as one of the two spells learned for gaining a level. Instead, it must be found in written form and copied into the spellbook. Clerics can prepare this spell only if they worship a god of the specific elemental spirit they are channeling.


5th-level conjuration (ritual)

  • Casting Time: 1 hour (see below)
  • Range: Touch
  • Components: V, S, M (a complete mechanical body worth 10,000 gp)
  • Duration: Instantaneou

Before the incantation begins, you must create a circle inscribed with Auran, Aquan, Ignan, or Terran runes, depending on the type of elemental you intend to bind, and place an inert gearforged body in its center. You must chant an incantation in this language throughout the ritual. At the end of this period, an elemental is summoned into the circle. The caster must make a DC 16 Charisma saving throw to bind the elemental to the construct. If it fails, you take 2d10 psychic damage and 2d10 damage based on the type of elemental (lightning for an air elemental, cold for a water elemental, fire for a fire elemental, or bludgeoning for an earth elemental) from the primal energy radiating from the elemental. The gearforged chassis also fails one death saving throw and is destroyed if it fails three saving throws. If you choose not to maintain the spell or are unable to do so, the elemental is instantly killed, and you drop to 0 hit points and are dying.

If the save succeeds, the elemental is bound to the elemental core and immediately animates the constructed body. The gearforged has its own personality and retains none of the elemental’s memories but might recall fragments as time passes.

If the spellcaster dies during a spiritbinding, the elemental is also destroyed and completely consumes the constructed body.

Up to four other spellcasters of at least 5th level can assist you in the ritual. Each assistant reduces the DC of the Charisma saving throw by 1. If you fail this save, each assistant takes the same damage you do. An assistant who drops out can’t rejoin.



Orcs are reviled across Midgard and rarely included among the ranks of the heroic, “civilized” races of the world. The enmity between the humans of Midgard and the orcs has stood since time immemorial, and none can remember who threw the first stone or hurled the first spear. The orcs once called the rolling Rothenian Plains and craggy Cloudwall Mountains their home before humans and elves allied to slaughter them like animals.

The blood of orcs, humans, and elves watered the plains for centuries until the orcs, broken and beaten, withdrew. They now hide in underground enclaves and mountain tunnels, planning revenge against their mortal enemies. Orcish civilization is predicated on the teachings of the White Goddess (see Midgard Campaign Setting), a warlike sun goddess who takes the form of a hulking, albino orc. Tales of her ferocity and power have united the orcs with other war-worshiping races like goblins, derro, ogres, and certain tribes of kobolds and centaurs.

Those few orcs who consort with humans and other “civilized” races tend to gather in the Free City of Zobeck and are descended from the Skyspear tribe of the Cloudwall Mountains. Many of the orcs who have joined with humans have done so only out of necessity, usually for money as a mercenary or for a guarantee of protection against future orc hunts. A few unusually idealistic orcs believe that they can improve humanity’s opinion of their race from within. It is yet to be seen if this optimistic dream can be realized.

Orc Traits

Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 2, and your Constitution score increases by 2.

Age. Orcs mature much faster than humans, reaching maturity by age 10. All orcs die by their fiftieth year, though most perish in battle long before then.

Alignment. It is an undeniable fact that most orcs commit great atrocities when bent to the will of evil masters. Yet, despite their evil reputation, few orcs willingly seek out the dark powers of this world—only those as power-hungry and despotic as humans who would do the same. Orcs in Zobeck can be of any alignment, and those in the wider world tend towards chaos.

Size. Orcs are mountains of muscle and fury, easily towering over even the tallest of humans. They range from 7 to just under 10 feet tall.

Aggressive. As a bonus action, you can move up to your movement speed toward a hostile creature you can see.

Brute Strength. When you hit with a melee weapon attack or another attack that adds your Strength modifier to damage, you add double your Strength modifier instead.

Charm Susceptibility. Your people have a history of subjugation at the hands of charismatic warlords, dark sorcerers, and conquering demigods. You have disadvantage on Wisdom saving throws made to resist being charmed.


Abyssal Tieflings

Abyssal Tiefling Names

Tieflings with abyssal heritage usually go by their family name, an Abyssal surname that has been associated with their family for generations. Among friends or colleagues, they use a name they chose themselves, often adopting the name of a deceased companion, or of a mythical or historical figure.

Male Abyssal Names: Aanik, Blaalibas, Ghorr, Hlalanop, Judnok, Kuss, Vevundur, Zendruckur

Female Abyssal Names: Fell, Ghirox, Keerys, Makkendis, Rizku, Vrixadie, Yyn

Abyssal Tiefling Traits

Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 1, and your Charisma score increases by 2.

Chaos Resistance. You have resistance to psychic damage and advantage on saving throws to resist madness.

Corrupting Gaze. You know the thaumaturgy cantrip. Once you reach 5th level, you may use an action to cause one creature who can see you to go briefly mad. The creature must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be afflicted with short-term madness for 1d6 rounds. The DC of this saving throw is equal to 8 + your Wisdom modifier + your proficiency bonus. You may only use this feature again after completing a long rest.

Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Abyssal.

Chaotic Mutations

Most abyssal tieflings appear to be normal humans with small horns protruding from their scalps. Many pass for humans much more gracefully than infernal tieflings. However, those whose chaotic bloodline is especially potent bear strange physical mutations that inspire fear and disgust in common folk. You may roll 1d10 or choose one of the following mutations.

  • Blood Fur. Your arms, legs, and face are covered in thick crimson fur.
  • Glabrezu’s Arms. Two tiny, vestigial arms grow from your abdomen.
  • Fractal Horns. The two horns atop your head branch into curling, splitting antlers. Tiny horns may cover other parts of your body.
  • Hezrou’s Stench. The stench of rot and excrement clings to you no matter how hard you clean.
  • Marilith’s Tail. Instead of legs, you have the lower body of a massive serpent.
  • Nalfenshee’s Muzzle. Two thick tusks sprout from your jaw, making your speech indistinct and muffled. Your nose is replaced with a piglike snout, and your eyes are reduced to red pinpricks beneath a heavy brow.
  • Quasit’s Talons. Your feet end in two toes tipped with vicious black claws. You also have inverted, digitigrade legs.
  • Dancing Shadow. Your shadow doesn’t follow your body unless it wishes to. You have no control over it, though you can communicate with it. It always returns to you at moonrise.
  • Vrock’s Beak. Your head is pointed and your hair replaced with gray feathers. You have a great black beak where your nose and mouth should be.
  • Decaying Wings. Your back is marred by four tattered, insectoid wings. They flutter pathetically as you jump or fall through the air. Some tieflings choose to have them amputated, leaving four thin scars as a sign of their heritage.

Characters exposed to corrupting demonic energies for dangerous lengths of time can develop these mutations as well.


Humans of Midgard

One of the following feats can be selected at 1st level as part of the variant human’s racial features.

Zobeck Dilettante

Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a human of Zobeck.

Humans of Zobeck must learn the ways of many different peoples. Thanks to your lifetime in the cosmopolitan Free City of Zobeck, you gain the following benefits:

  • Whenever you multiclass into a class you have not taken levels in, you may increase any ability score by 1, to a maximum of 20. If this ability score increase would allow you to multiclass into a class you lack an ability score minimum to enter, you may multiclass into it.

Blood of the Aesir

Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a human of the Northlands You are descended from the gods.

Your divine birthright gives you the power to lead your fellow Northlanders through the harshest winters. You gain the following benefits:

-You have advantage on death saving throws and saving throws to resist exhaustion. Additionally, you know the thaumaturgy cantrip and can use it to create the thunderous sound of the horns of Valhalla for up to 1 minute.

Kariv Nomad

Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a Karivi human.

You never stop moving, and have lived on wagons and horses your entire life. You gain the following benefits:

  • You may spend 8 hours with a horse or other riding or pack animal to make it your animal companion. This companion adds your proficiency bonus to its Armor Class, attack rolls, damage rolls, and saving throws and ability checks it is proficient in. It obeys your commands and acts on your initiative, though you must use your action to command it to take the Attack, Dash, Disengage, Dodge, or Help action. If you have the Extra Attack feature, you can command it to make an attack in place of one of your own attacks.

Additionally, you have advantage on Wisdom (Animal Handling) checks made to interact with horses and other riding or pack animals.

Septime Warmonger

Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a human of the Seven Cities War is a way of life for you.

Whenever you kill a creature, you may gain one of the following benefits:

  • You gain temporary hit points equal to half your character level (minimum 1).
  • You gain advantage on your next attack roll.
  • You may make one additional attack at a creature within 5 feet of you.


Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a human of the Wasted West.

Your body and mind have been hardened through exposure to the horrors of the wastes. You gain the following benefits:

  • Your physical scarring grants you advantage on Charisma (Intimidation) checks against intelligent creatures who can see your face. Your mental fortitude gives you advantage on saving throws made to resist madness, and you cannot be affected by short-term madness.

Walker of Shadowed Roads

Prerequisite: Must be chosen at 1st level by a human of Dornig or at 4th level by an elf or elfmarked of Dornig.

As a child, you learned the secrets of navigating the ancient fey roads. You gain the following benefits:

  • You can learn the distance and direction of the nearest gate to the Shadow Realms by spending 10 minutes in meditation. Also, when traveling along a shadow road, you and others traveling with you reach your destination 1 day quicker than usual and have advantage on Wisdom (Survival) checks made to avoid getting lost while in the Shadow Realm.


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