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Shikelf (3.5e Race)

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Date Created: 2001
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Shikelves

Shikelves are a forest, tree dwelling race by nature having evolved in the dangerous forests of the Shiklesh continent. As such, they are well adapted to living and moving effortlessly and silently through a forest. They instinctively know how and where to place their hands, feet and body when in a forest. Because of this a Shikelf is able to effectively disappear once in a forest as a moments notice. Even when not trying to hide, they instinctively move silently which can unnerve people around them who are not use to their silence. They are so intone to the rhythms, sounds and feel of a forest, they are apart of it, apart of the nature of the forest, a predator who belongs there just as much as any other predator in the woods.

Personality

Shikelves are and outgoing yet violent race. Unlike their cousins they do not outwardly show their violent natures, keeping their inner beasts under tight control. They are quick to laugh and slow to hold grudges. They live life to the fullest. Shikelves are always watchful, their eyes always moving looking for the next attack, identifying every escape rout and every possible approach. They are light sleepers preferring to sleep in the trees and off the ground.

Shikelves are most at home in forests and wooded areas flowing into the natural rhythm of these areas easily. They do not like wide open areas or open plains as this leaves them exposed and limits their mobility for lack of places to climb.

Physical Description

Medium sized humanoid averaging five to six feet in height with greenish, forest colored scales covering most of their body. They feature elven like build, slender with pointed ears. Though they are humanoid and a breed of elves, they have more in common with felines than humans. The layout of most of their scales is the same for both males and females. Most of the scales are medium to small sized depending on how flexible the area has to be for movement. They have a large scale, which covers almost the entire back of their hands. This scale can be very dangerous when they backhand someone. They have a set of six large scales covering their lower arms. These scales are as long as their lower arms and can be used to block or deflect bladed (non magical) weapons. They have similar scales covering their lower legs. Large scales over their shoulder blades and slightly smaller scales covering their spine running down their back in a strait row. Covering their shoulders, knees and elbows are scales, which are like football pads. The males have a pair of huge scales covering their breasts while the females have no scales on their breasts. All of their scales are greenish, forest colored. They do not have facial hair. Their hair is usually black, brown, or forest green. Shikelves fancy tight, close fitting clothes that allow them to move and will not get cot on things such as branches or thorns. The dominant colors for their outfits are shades greens and browns to match the forest.

Relations

Shikelves have a neutral tolerant attitude toward other races and cultures. They do not judge people based on their species or culture, but on the individuals actions, words and deeds. They neither hate or like other races or cultures.

Alignment

Shikarins tend toward the neutral and good alignments holding a deeply ingrain respect for all life and nature.

Lands

Shikelves originate from the forests of the Shiklesh island located on Vina's equator. Shikelves tend to gather and build their villages and cities in heavy and dense forests preferring to build their structures in the trees below the canopy and above where the thickest foliage begins. Shiklesh is known on Vina as one of the single most dangerous places on the planet with a large variety of ground based predators. The only aerial predator large enough to be a threat to a grown Shikelf would be the dragons, and thus they stay below the canopy of the forest in order to stay hidden from above and below. Shikelves will never build one open plains or hills as these types of areas are to open and exposed for them.

Religion

Shikelves generally worship Shikara, the god of protection and light as it is believed that they were created by Shikara to protect the forests of their native land as the Shikarins were created to protect the mountains.

Language

The main language of Shikelves is a language called Shikelven. It is a smoother flowing variant on Shikarin focusing on concepts rather than on more literal meanings. Shikelven is made up of short groups of sounds which convey whole meanings and concepts. A single word or group of sounds can convey whole sentences worth of information. The meaning of a single sound our group can differ depending on its exact context.

Names

Shikelven names are usually hard sounding starting with a K, V, T, or D and having the "SH" sound somewhere in the name. All Shikelven names are spelled as they sound and there are no silent letters in Shikelven names as the Shikarin alphabet as no silent letters.

Racial Traits

  • +3 Dexterity, +1 Strength, -2 Charisma, -1 Wisdom: Shikelves are strong, graceful hunters.
  • Medium-size: As Medium-size creatures, Shikelves have no special bonuses or penalties due to size.
  • Shikelven base speed is 45 feet. Climb speed is 25 on wood, 10 on stone.
  • +2 racial saving throw bonus against Enchantment spells and effects and a +4 racial bonus against mind altering spells and effects. Shikelves minds are sturdy places and the beast within guards them ferociously from intrusion or alteration.
  • +2 racial bonus on all reflex saves. Shikelves fast nervous system and keen sense of danger allows them to quickly react to danger, sometimes before they are even consciously aware of the danger.
  • 1 racial bonus to Armor Class (AC). The shikelf's scales act as a form of natural armor.
  • Low-light Vision: Elves 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.
  • Proficient with martial weapons. All shikelves are taught the martial practices from childhood as a basic survival practice.
  • +2 racial bonus on Listen, Search, Spot and Scent checks. A Shikelf who merely passes within 5 feet of a secret or concealed door or hidden person is entitled to a search check to notice it as if they were actively looking for the door. A shikelf's senses are so keen that they practically has a sixth sense about hidden portals or dangers.
  • Natural Weapons: Shikelf's feature retractable cat like claws on their hands and feet along with sharp teeth allowing them to use their Claws and Teeth as natural weapons.
  • Prehensile Feet: Shikelves feet are very flexible allowing them to utilize their feet as a second pair of hands.
  • Feline Leap: Shikelves are able to leap 3 times their body height in any direction.
  • Automatic Languages: Common, Shikelven and Shikarin.
  • Favored Class: Fighter and Rogue. A multiclass shikelf's fighter or rogue class does not count when determining whether she suffers an XP penalty for multiclassing. Fighting and Rogue arts come naturally to shikelves, almost instinctively.

Basic Instincts

Shikelves are a forest, tree dwelling race by nature having evolved in the dangerous forests of the Shiklesh continent. As such, they are well adapted to living and moving effortlessly and silently through a forest. They instinctively know how and where to place their hands, feet and body when in a forest. Because of this a Shikelf is able to effectively disappear once in a forest as a moments notice. Even when not trying to hide, they instinctively move silently which can unnerve people around them who are not use to their silence. They are so intone to the rhythms, sounds and feel of a forest, they are apart of it, apart of the nature of the forest, a predator who belongs there just as much as any other predator in the woods.

Instincts combined with claws and strong bodies help to make Shikelves natural born climbers, weather they are climbing a tree, a cliff face or the sides of buildings. They are also exceptional jumpers having the feline’s ability to judge distance and grace in the air though they do not have a tail. Shikelves are also known to land on their feet given enough time to correct themselves in a fall. Relying on all six of their basic senses along with a strong sense of balance they are constantly aware of their body’s position and movement at all times. Shikelves do not like falling, unless it is intentional. If near a wall they will instinctively attempt to impale their claws into the wall to arrest their fall. Even if sleeping above the ground, if they begin to fall off the object they are sleeping in their brains and nervous system will react to grab the object they are sleeping on before they fall clear of it. This happens in an instant before they fully regain consciousness.

Most Powerful and Ancient Instincts

Deshclovel (Demon rage)

Shikelves have an inner beast just like Shikarins within them. This beast is the cause of shikelf's inherent violent nature, but it also provides them with the strength to live in the land of Shikara. Shikelves normally have strict control of their inner beast and have it locked up. When a shikelf rages a little bit of this beast is allowed to escape boosting the shikelf's strength and fighting ability at the same time causing their violent natures to run out of control.

Rage is caused when a shikelf gets extremely mad (eye glowing deep red) and even then there is only a 25% chance of raging. A shikelf can trigger rage, but this is extremely difficult. First they must be mad at something. This cannot a trifle little thing, it must be something the character would really get mad at. The shikelf then concentrates to increase his anger (Their eyes will glow more and more red if successful). This takes several seconds. He must make a successful willpower check. Rage can only be force triggered for the defense of another.

Things that will inherently make a Shikelf mad;

  • The harming of children (Must be neutral or good alignments)
  • The harming of a loved one or close friend.

Effects of Raging (This is Temp);

  • +4 to strength and constitution.
  • Dexterity is doubled.
  • There eyes stop glowing. The edge of the colored area of their eyes turns blood red and the color turns to white. The shikelf gets a meaner look and aura bout them. While raging the shikelf can only focus on killing and the next target. They cannot use any skills or abilities that require patience and or concentration, such as moving silently or casting spells.
  • An enforced rage lasts for several minutes after which the shikelf's anger or Key Target is resolved. If it was triggered by a person killing another person and is based on revenge, then the rage will not end until one of 3 things happen; 1, The person the elf thought killed shows up alive. 2, The Key Target is killed. Or 3, the elf is killed.

Percent to Rage Chart Modifier Percent = Incident

  • +50% = Wife, strong love, murdered. Marriage of convenience does not count.
  • +45% = Wife to be, strong love, murdered.
  • +40% = Family brutally wiped out in a day.
  • +30% = Home Village wiped out.
  • +30% = Close sibling murdered.
  • +20% = Mother or father murdered.
  • +15% = Girl friend murdered.
  • +10% = Best friend or soul brother/sister murdered.
  • +05% = Young child murdered in cold blood for the fun of it.

In all cases the one who ordered the murder at the top of the command chain is the Key Target.


Dragnophobia

Hidden deep within their being, shikelves have a deep and powerful instinctive fear of dragons. This is a survival instinct that ALL shikelves have. To a Shikarin Dragon (a dragon species of their native land), Shikelf is a delicacy and dragons constantly hunt and look for shikelves who have left themselves vulnerable to attack.

If a shikelf perceives a threat of a dragon (visually or verbally) they must concentrate their willpower on not succumbing to the fear or go into a split second panic fleeing the source of the threat. Upon seeing the dragon, a shikelf may gain a +2 bonus to their will check for each attribute which does not closely resemble a Shikarin Dragon (Wings, Leg Arrangement, Coloration, Head Style, Intelligence, Magic). Shikarin dragon resemble D&D red dragons, except they are gray/green in coloration, bestial intelligence and can not cast spells or talk.

If a shikelf smells a dragon, it is harder to not succumb to the fear, if they succumb their instinct will kick in and the elf will refuse to go any further toward the source of the smell. If they succeed then they can keep moving on but they will be very nervous, their senses become even more heightened.

If a Shikelf runs into a sleeping dragon they will instantly stop in their tracks and be as silent and still as possible. If the Shikelf fails to overcome the fear they will instinctively execute a slow and silent retreat from the dragon. If the dragon wakes up, they will instantly panic vanishing from the scene as fast, as silently as possible without being seen by any one in the area. This may occur though a rapid retreat from the area or the Shikelf hiding someplace nearby. In either case, to most people, the Shikelf would appear to be suddenly gone. Shikelves do not suffer any penalties to skill checks for speed, balance, and stealth and all are activated automatically.


Fear of Absolute Darkness

Shikelves have a problem in complete absolute darkness, they brains are not able to function normally. If they do not perceive some kind of ambient light they will freak out and try to escape the "Unnatural" darkness. They loss all self control and will not stop trying to escape until they reach light or loss consciousness. A shikelf in this state is extremely violent, unpredictable and almost unstoppable. This of course makes them very dangerous. There is no reasoning with a shikelf in this state as their conscious mind has retreated within themselves and they are running on pure instinct.

Additional Information

The following information is for informational purposes to provide additional in-site into the race which may help both players and game masters in working with this race.

Shikelven Biology

Medium sized humanoid averaging five to six feet in height with greenish, forest colored scales covering most of their body. They feature elven like build, slender with pointed ears. Though they are humanoid and a breed of elves, they have more in common with felines than humans. The layout of most of their scales is the same for both males and females. Most of the scales are medium to small sized depending on how flexible the area has to be for movement. They have a large scale, which covers almost the entire back of their hands. This scale can be very dangerous when they backhand someone. They have a set of six large scales covering their lower arms. These scales are as long as their lower arms and can be used to block or deflect bladed (non magical) weapons. They have similar scales covering their lower legs. Large scales over their shoulder blades and slightly smaller scales covering their spine running down their back in a strait row. Covering their shoulders, knees and elbows are scales, which are like football pads. The males have a pair of huge scales covering their breasts while the females have no scales on their breasts. All of their scales are greenish, forest colored. They do not have facial hair. Their hair is usually black, brown, or forest green. Shikelves fancy tight, close fitting clothes that allow them to move and will not get cot on things such as branches or thorns. The dominant colors for their outfits are shades greens and browns to match the forest.

Shikelven Nervous System

Shikelves have more in common with felines than with any other race. Their nervous system is more sensitive than the human nervous system able to move information at much greater speeds. All five of the basic senses are heightened with the addition of a sixth sense. Their sixth sense utilizes small nerves just under their scales which allow them to sense electrical currents in the air. This gives them a subconscious feeling of the electromagnetic fields in the area around them. This also gives them a heightened weather sense as they are able to feel electrical charges in the air increasing with the approach of a storm.

Shikelves have a greater hearing range than humans, able to hear a wider range of frequencies as well as hear long distances and low sounds. The Shikelven audio frequency is between 10 and 50,000 Hertz.

Their eyes are keen with more visual receptors in a single eye than humans. They can see just as well in moonlight as they can during the day. Their vision is just as keen under starlight, though they may not see as well. They still see better on a moonless night than humans do at night.

Shikelves sense of smell, taste and touch are also heightened. They are able to feel the air about them and its movements. Under normal conditions their scales are loose allowing air to freely flow around their scales and reach the skin below. Dew to the heightened nervous system, in part, Shikelves have very quick reactions and equally fast reflexes. Their brains and minds are complex; they are constantly processing information, making them exceptionally alert. Their bodies and nervous system are equipped with an array of automatic defenses and reactions to hostile or dangerous conditions. This allows a Shikelf to react to dangerous situations or conditions almost without conscious thought.

Shikelven Physical Attributes

Shikelven bodies are built to take punishment while being as light as possible. Their muscular system are more complex than a Human muscular system with more muscle fibers and denser muscles than human muscles. This helps facilitate their quick reflexes as well as their precise control of almost every muscle. A Shikelf is almost twice as strong in any given muscle as a human of equal size and development. Their leg muscles are incredibly powerful, with great stamina allowing a Shikelf to run at great speeds and for long periods of time. The fastest recorded land speed of a Shikelf was 80.4 kilometers per hour. They are able to jump up to 3 times their body height in any direction in an instant. They are able to cover almost 5 times their body height in a running jump.

Their bones are dense, not easily broken, yet hollow like a bird bones. They have more bones in their bodies than humans do. Notably, they have a single bone at the ends of their jaw connecting them together. They have 3 bones in their lower arms and legs. They have cross bracing bones in their ribs.

Their scales form a layer of natural armor above the skin. They are very hard and resistant to damage. The scales covering the lower arms, lower legs, chest and the back of the hands are particularly thick and sturdy. Shikelven scales are even resilient against most common blades. They often use the scales covering the lower arms as shields, the scales covering the back of the hands as weapons. Their scales are made up of 2 layers connected to muscles on the skin. The top layer of the scale is one of the greatest electrical conductors ever found while the lower layers is an insulator. Under normal conditions the scales sit loose on the skin allowing the Shikelf to move freely without hindering any movement. When hazardous conditions are sensed the muscles attached to the skin tense causing the scales to close over the skin tightly. The most common case of this is during electrical strikes, where the tightness of the scales allow electricity to freely flow over the scales but not through the body.

Shikelves have a number of additional physical features. They have prehensile toes, meaning they are able to grip materials with their feet. This is done in part dew to an additional joint between their toes and their ankle. They have as much control and dexterity in their feet as they do of their hands. Their toes are also equipped with retractable cat-like claws. Their fingers are also equipped with these claws. Their claws are of sufficient hardness and strength to dig into stone allowing Shikelves to climb the shear cliffs bordering the forests they live. By nature, Shikelves are a tree dwelling race. The hardness of their claws stems from their biological connections to Shikarins and the amount of time they do spend in the mountains.

Shikelven Chemical and Digestive Systems

The Shikelven immune system is quite efficient along with their bodily filtration systems making them very resilient against biological contaminants and poisons. Their digestive system is very powerful allowing them to metabolize most animal and plant proteins and destroy most forms of bacteria and contaminates which may be ingested in their diets.

Shikelven biology is a bit strange in that their hyperactive metabolism requires a certain amount of animal proteins in their diet. Without this their system begins to break down and fail. For this reason there are no Shikelven vegetarians. A Shikelf can go up to 3 weeks without any meat before they begin to feel the effects which would have similar symptoms to mal-nutrition. Their bodies also use a certain amount of salt in their systems, though it is not completely clear what the salt is used for. Their digestive system is equipped to process salt found in liquids and their foods. It is believed this is in part dew to the large quantity of salt found in the mountains and the water system of the continent where they developed. Shikelves regularly drink salt-water in their normal diets. Fresh water tastes bland and unappealing to Shikelven taste buds.

Vital Statistics

Table: Shikelf Random Starting Ages
Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
50 years +Rogue +Ranger +Druid
Table: Shikelf Aging Effects
Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
years years years + years
  1. At middle age, −1 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  2. At old age, −2 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  3. At venerable age, −3 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
Table: Shikelf Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 6' 0" +1d6 140 lb. × (1d4) lb.
Female 6' 0" +1d6 140 lb. × (1d4) lb.



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