Dwarves

Fourth of the humen races, the dwarves were created to be workers and builders. Burly and steadfast, although the fourth race were unparalleled crafters with an eye for order and design, they were taciturn and unwilling to serve their saldrash creators…

Personality: Dwarves are certain to the point of arrogance, organized as to the cusp of obsessive, and so observant that they can best be described as critical. Among themselves as well as among others, dwarves are argumentative and can be down right surly. Yet, in spite of these characteristics, the dwarves of Drm have provided quite a bit of value to the continent-realm due to their dedication and overwhelming desire to see most others prosper.

Dwarves view themselves as emotionally reserved, although they are more likely to come across brusquely and seem to have tempers. In reality, dwarves have learned that they are more likely to get what they want from others by withholding their softer sides in favor of their harsher natures, bullying and intimidating others into doing what they want. To a dwarf, only the closest confidants and friends are worthy to experience the more pleasant side and even then rarely. It is for this reason that dwarves have earned reputations for being unpleasant if not downright rude. They can be bitterly critical, finding no problem in issuing or hearing the toughest comments so long as they believe such comments are made with the intent of helping another improve. If a dwarf offers a kind word, it is a rare event that non-dwarves cherish; within dwarven society, a kind word is simply considered recognition for working out all the kinks and receives little more attention than that.

In effect, dwarven critical culture has promoted the race to the forefront of Drmian society. Dwarven societies are the most advanced politically and technologically in the entire continent-realm. Due to the dwarven commitment to constant improvement and growth, dwarves have never settled and have never become satisfied as a race, believing that there is always a better, smoother way. Initially, this attitude was limited to craftsmanship and architecture, but this was simply the foundation for the burgeoning sociopolitical attitude that now dominates humenity in Drm. It is from the dwarves that modern concepts of law, social norms, music, literacy (particularly their alphabet), and the codifying of The Word were acquired. While dwarves are not the most inherently creative people, they excel in honing the natural talents of others and making them available to others. Thus, although dwarves are not as sensitive to magic as elves or even sapiens, their drive to understand the logic behind The Word would lead to them having the first wizards in Drm (as opposed to the sorcerers of other races). While dwarves are certainly not as musically talented as others, they would find the means to define different music forms, establish notes, and develop an unparalleled myriad of musical instruments.

By virtue of their successes as a race, dwarves believe that they are superior to all other races. Their advancements are a clear reflection of a simple truth. However, this attitude is not racist for dwarves believe that all other races (save perhaps the chirpto) have the ability to ascend to their level of success with the proper guidance. Dwarven guidance is a harsh thing, though, as the stout folk do not believe in free hand outs for the shiftless and lazy. Rather, their guidance is usually perceived as offensive and curt; to the more learned, dwarven guidance is intrusive and manipulative. The latter attitude has become more and more prevalent among the dwarven elite as they have become convinced that the rest of Drm needs their guidance.

Dwarves practice very tradition laden lives. Every aspect of dwarven society is codified and stratified. Although dwarves do believe in independence and individuality, they as strongly believe that each dwarf’s strengths should be committed to the greater good of dwarven society while his or her weaknesses are smothered under the weight of practice and perseverance. Dwarves believe that some sacrifice of individual liberty is essential for the greater good. The result of this complex perspective has led to a very thorough and involved set of laws and rules in dwarven society that strives to recognize individuality within the greater need of dwarven existence. There are a few areas in which dwarves are free to be themselves. All dwarves marry who they wish and it is expect that they will only marry out of love. Dwarves also raise their children within cohesive family environments, although with the expectation that the child will grow to benefit the greater community. Males and females are completely equal; indeed, there have been as many female thanes as there have been male. While to non-dwarves, there appear to be limited personal freedoms, to dwarves, their lives are better now than they ever have been while still upholding the values of their forebears.

Although they have found the means to sate their lust for gold and other precious metals and stones, dwarven society still holds such items in high regard. There are few gifts one can give a dwarf better than gold or diamonds. If there continues to be a flaw that dwarves find in themselves, it lies in their racial lust for gold. Others would argue that dwarven lust for gold, arrogance, critical natures, and manipulative tendencies count among dwarven weaknesses.

Physical Description: Dwarves rise to 4 ½ feet at best, with the bulk being 4 feet. While they are short, dwarves are often as heavy as sapiens, the average weight for both males and females around 180 pounds. Dwarves are muscular, though, and it is rare to see a truly fat dwarf. Dwarves have light to dark brown flesh that has a coarse, gravel-like texture; their eyes are always dark but seem to have an odd, glittering luster. Dwarves have long hair and both genders have beards. Females long since took to trimming their beards, although most keep well-groomed sideburns and grow their head-hair long. Female dwarves love heavily arranged hairstyles and often incorporate their clothing with their hair. Males love their beards and often decorate their beards. Conversely, males keep their head-hair short and some are prone to cutting off all of their hair. In both genders, hair colors range from stark white to the deepest black.

Dwarves prefer what appears to be formal attire. Whether they go to war, meet with colleagues, or simply leave their homes, dwarves always seem dressed up. They prefer rich earth tones mixed in with violets and greens.

Dwarves are long lived, reaching maturity in their mid 40s and living until they reach their fourth century.

Relations: Dwarves view all other races as backwards and in dire need of saving. They also rarely take pains to hide this attitude which has darkly colored their relations. The only race that has managed to make the best of dwarven arrogance are sapiens, most of whom value dwarven enterprise. Sapiens have long since learned that their lives only get better by using dwarven technology and are willing to suffer dwarven snippishness. Dwarves view sapiens as the most capable of the races, as well as the most dangerous with or without dwarven aid; essentially, dwarves believe that if they can offer sapiens enough guidance, the youngest humen race may become better for it. Dwarves perceive hobgoblins as dangerous, warmongering fools that the nevertheless respect for their strong traditional commitments. Duruban were universally detested by dwarves and the dwarves are not sad to see them gone, although they are very interested in finding out what happened to the sixth race. Gnomes perturb dwarves; the stout folk have done little to explore how gnomes came into being, lending credence to the suggestion that the dwarves could not handle the possibility that glade folk are the descendants of dwarven/elven mating. Gnomes are treated with friendly caution as dwarves admire their ingenuity with magic. Dwarves claim to dislike kin and elves. Few things can be further from the truth. In reality, dwarves like the challenge the kin present and are fascinated by elven sensibilities and oneness with nature and magic. What frustrates dwarves with both races is their inability to impress upon them the importance of the dwarven way of life. The more intellectual among the dwarves believe that the presence of elves and the kin will ensure that dwarves never become complacent.

Dwarves hate chirpto. Chirpto are viewed as little more than vermin that have encroached on dwarven land and have mocked dwarven society. In the past, the conflicts between chirpto and dwarves were especially vicious and it has only been in recent centuries that any form of truce has been established. Dwarves are dedicated to this truce but fully expect for the chirpto to break it.

Among other races, dwarves detest goblins, giants, and most other monstrous humanoids. The source of this hatred is unclear but is plain that dwarves have long since mastered techniques to bring down giant enemies. Some believe that it is this enmity with goblinoids that has helped maintain positive relations with elves.

There are persistent rumors of dwarven sub-races. Names like dueger and derro have been found in ancient texts. To date, no one has verified that these sub-races exist and dwarves never discuss them.

Alignment: Dwarves are Lawful almost to a fault. In spite of their arrogance and rudeness, dwarves are more likely to be good than not. Dwarves believe that most beings have goodness in them and that they need help getting it out. There have always been plenty of Lawful Neutral dwarves, however, and these come the closest to being out and out racists. While there are smatterings of Neutral Good dwarves, other alignments are so rare as to be perceived as fantasy.

Religion: Dwarves worship the Masters of the Mountain, a pantheon of dwarf-like immortals. The leader of this group is known as Barthramus. The Masters of the Mountain are the dwarven ideal made manifest. Dwarves are an extremely religious race and their commitment to the Masters of the Mountain permeates most aspects of their society.

Languages: Dwarves speak dwarven, although most also speak Common and Elven. Dwarves were the first race to develop a written language and all alphabets are based upon the original Dwarven alphabet.

Names: Dwarven naming is very complex. A dwarf is given a name at birth. Such names are usually based upon the most recent experiences of the family or an event that played a role in the conception of the child. All dwarves possess a clan name; furthermore, each also has an ancestor name. Finally, upon reaching the age of 24, all dwarves take on their true name. This true name is kept secret by dwarves and only used by and told to the closest friends and immediate family members (not necessarily one and the same). Names are rarely gender based.
Blunthammer, Emperus, Flindgold, Korg, Shogun, Sterlingedge, Xrt

Adventurers: Most dwarven adventurers do not travel for the sake of travel. Rather, most adventurers are ordered by the state to travel and to either gather information, eliminate a group or individual, or offer assistance (asked for or not) to others. Such adventurers run the gamut in class, although the best known dwarves are fighters, paladins, or rogues.

Regions: Dwarves are the only truly monolithic race. All dwarves hail from the Republic of Burquebain which itself was forged by the survivors of Drm’s first empire, Satrimmoth. Burquebain stretches across the Crown of Burquebain mountain range north of the Deep Sea.

Dwarven Racial Traits: Dwarves possess all of the dwarven racial traits listed on pages 14 and 15 of the Player’s Handbook except as follows:

• -2 Dexterity, +2 Constitution, +2 Intelligence, -2 Charisma: Dwarves possess rugged bodies and minds, but inflexible attitudes and dexterity.
• Replace the +1 attack bonus against orcs with a +1 attack bonus against kobolds
• Favored Class: In addition to fighter, dwarves treat paladin as a favored class.

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