Changeling

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Races: Human | Elf | Dracon | Dwarf | Gnome | Halfling | Half-elf | Half-orc | Lupin | Minotaur

Custom Races: Adomkuro | Avariel | Centaur | Changeling | Drangonari | Ghost Elf | Gnoll | Goblin | Half-Dryad | Half-Nymph | Half-Ogre | Kobold | Orc | Sereg'wethrin | Shaahesk | Stone Dwarf | Wemic

PC Statistics

Base Race: Elf

Ability Score Adjustments: +2 Dex +2 Con -2 Int -2 Wis

Feats:

Special Abilities:

Favored Class: Rogue


Overview

The changelings are the creation of the unpredictable god Forian. They are one of the nine major races roaming the planet, and although it is likely that they are just as numerous as the other eight races, their existence is shrouded in mystery. This is because changelings possess the ability to change their form almost at will. They can assume the appearance of almost anything that moves, and some things that don't.

As individuals, changelings tend to be very solitary. They rarely gather in large numbers and do not seem to crave the company of other changelings very much. Some are so solitary that they rarely ever come into contact with other sentient beings whatsoever, while others are very curious and travel through populated areas frequently. Their personalities are as variant as their forms. Sometimes they even vary within the same individual.

Geographically, it is thought that the highest concentration of changelings exists in what is now known as The Wastelands. Originally the land making up The Wastelands spanned over parts of Jechran and Drotid. Due to an unknown freak accident or catastrophe, the land was destroyed and infected with some unknown form of magical residue that is harmful to most races. The changelings seem to be immune to its affects, and for this reason, it is thought that they make this area their de facto home, if one could call it that.

Nevertheless, this information, as with any information on changelings, is hard to pin down. Everything known about them is speculation. Few have seen a changeling's true form, for they are often loathe to use it in public, much like other races are loathe to disrobe in front of the opposite sex. For the most part, they are often secretive about their ability to change form alltogether. Some are known to masquerade in one form for years at a time, building up a life with it complete with friends and a trade to make a living.

Changeling physiology is not well understood either. It is thought that they are male and female, and that some form of mating exists, though this has not been proven. They are known to grow to adulthood a bit quicker than the long-lived races, usually within 15 to 20 years, and they are thought to live for perhaps 2 centuries at most. Upon reaching adulthood, they will either adopt a trade and eek out an existance among the other races, or they will strike out on their own as wanderers, or sometimes hermits. Some have been known to carry on the wildly informal and chaotic worship of their god Forian, though few seem to even acknowledge that there are any gods at all. Such things are generally too contemplative and require all too much forethought for these beings, who tend to exist wholly in the moment.

Notes

Changeling Character Creation

Tattoos, Phenotype and Sex

Tattoos, phenotype and sex all affect changeling appearance when taking some (dynamic) forms... a female changeling copying a dynamic human will appear female, with whatever tattoos were chosen during character generation. You can still take the form of the opposite sex by copying static models. Changelings in natural form are static models (ie they have a set appearance)

Voiceset, Icon and Character Description

Voiceset, icon and character description remain the same through any form. The engine-generated attack speech ("I'm gonna bathe in your blood") is OOC for changelings, but it can be annoying to see your changeling in animal form shouting battle cries. A guide to implementing a "silent" voiceset which can be used upon character creation can be found here: Link

Alignment

Alignment: Any. It is not cheesy for a changleing to be lawful, any more than it is cheesy for a dwarf to be chaotic evil, an orc to be chaotic good, or a human to be something other than neutral.

In Play

Activation

The changeling ability activator is on the radial menu, in the vicinity the "golden anvil" that activates Avlis custom content. It takes time to copy a creature and the changeling must be very close to the subject. This ability cannot be used in combat, and hostile creatures will attack if they can perceive the changeling. There are ways to copy hostile creatures. Think about it, and experiment with creatures that can't kill you on the spot. Changelings remain in their current form -- even in death -- unless they choose to change.

Number of Forms in Memory

Changelings start out being able to memorize 5 forms of Medium size category. This limit increases at +1 form per 3 levels

Watch your number of total forms memorized. If you are at your limit and go to copy another form, and fail, you may think that the form is of the wrong size for you. When you are full, all you get is a blank line in the right action board. A size failure is stated as such in yellow print.

Forms Are Cosmetic

Changeling forms are cosmetic. No special abilities are gained from the new form. However, there are a couple of exceptions:

  • Size bonuses/penalties to AC, AB, weapon wielding, etc. The size of your form has the usual modifiers. (Note that there is currently a glitch where the server won't recognize size changes. This can be fixed by logging/re-logging, or portalling to another server.)
  • There are significant differences in base speed between forms.
  • Note that creatures of size Small or less are immune to Evard's black tentacles.

Movement Rates

Changelings in humanoid form suffer a movement penalty compared with "normal" PCs. Upon log-in or server-hop, a changeling needs to change forms (visible to onlookers) or adjust speed through the command on the changeling menu (not visible to onlookers). The server will automatically adjust speed as needed on subsequent changes.

Kinarr, Avlis Builder, explains the movement issue:

"Every creature appearance has a set speed defined for it. Almost everything is Normal speed, including all the NPCs of all the playable races- humans, elves, etc. Some are Slow (cow), some Fast (Jaguar), and some Very Fast (Fairy).
"Now, when a PC is first created, they are set to yet a different speed. PC speed is slightly faster than Normal speed. This allows you to run away from those pesky gnomish bandits. Even a changeling, when first created, is at PC speed, but as soon as they change form for the first time, their speed gets set to the speed of that form. If they change into a human, their speed is set to Normal. The "bug" here, is that they can never get back their original PC speed, since they take on the speed of whatever form they copied.
"So, the fix for this, is to give changelings a slight speed increase whenever they are using a from that has Normal speed. This allows them to keep up with all the other PCs going at PC speed. If the changeling becomes a fairy, they don't need a speed boost, because they will be just as fast as any other fairy with their speed set to Very Fast.
"Incidentally, a changeling in fairy form will be faster than a polymorphed PC in fairy form, because polymorph does not change the PC's speed."

Portraits

A changeling can opt to copy the portrait of the target, or revert to their original portrait.

Dynamic Forms

Changelings also copy the head and body type (and wings/tail, if appropriate) of a dynamic form target (PC races, typically).

Sizes

At character creation, the changeling can copy Medium forms. At Character Level 5 you can mimic Small things. At level 10, Large. At 15 Tiny, and at 20 Huge. It's not obvious what forms are what size. Don't assume. You'd think fairies would be Tiny, but actually they are Small. There are many non-humanoid forms available immediately as Medium creatures. Most dogs, for example, are Medium.

Illegal Forms

It is physically possible to copy forms that are illegal. A changeling may take any form except the following:

  1. Incorporeal undead (ghost, wraith, spectre, allip, etc.) or partially incorporeal forms (floating skulls, helmed horrors, etc.) [1]
  2. Inanimate objects (chair, combat dummy, archery target, barrel, chest, box, etc.)
  3. Dual/multiple creature models (mount and riders like worg riders, spider riders, cloud of bugs, etc.)
  4. Drangonari, Sereg, Ghost Elf (improper skin color). [2]

Anything else is fair game, including elementals, oozes, outsiders, constructs and corporeal undead.

Change Detection

Other characters near a changeling manifesting their power automatically make a Spellcraft check. If the check is successful, they are told that the changeling changed forms. This is the ONLY sure method of changeling detection. A character visually witnessing a form change -- but failing their Spellcraft roll -- may assume they have seen a changeling, but cannot be sure. Changelings have no special ability to detect other changelings. It is always cheesing to use the 'floaty name' to "Out" a changeling. It is also cheesing for the changeling to abuse area transitions to change forms to evade pursuit.

Speech Ability

Many available forms have no power of speech. It is cheesing, as an example, to be a talking dog. Of course one may emote the appropriate sounds (*bark* for the dog, and *screech* for a falcon, for example).

Approved Speaking Exotic Forms
  • Azer
  • Balor
  • Death Slaad
  • Demonflesh Golem
  • Dragons (Wyrmlings to Ancient)
  • Faerie Dragon
  • Gargoyle
  • Giants (Fire or otherwise)
  • Harpy
  • Imp
  • Lupin
  • Medusa
  • Mephit
  • Mind Flayer (Illithid)
  • Minotaur
  • Manticore
  • Pixie
  • Rakshasa
  • Risen Lord
  • Tlincalli
  • Troll
  • Vampire

Equipment & Spellcasting

Spellcasting that requires speech requires a form that can speak. See above.

Your weapons, armor and magic items become part of your form.

You cannot use projectile weapons when in a form without arms and opposable thumbs. Using a projectile weapon is always visible, even if your model does not show it. You are not a quill-shooting porcupine (which is a myth anyway).

Weapons used in non-humanoid forms are not visible, but any elemental damage effects are. This does not mean that you can be identified as a changeling, but it is odd. It would be perfectly reasonable to assume the friendly dog dripping acid from its jaws was carrying a disease or possessed and put the poor creature out of its misery.

Changelings can pick things up in non-humanoid forms by absorbing them into their forms, however if a person can see you they can see you absorbing the items, regardless of the direction of the camera and how stealthy you think you are. Again, they cannot identify you as a changeling, but they may decide you are a threat.

Scrolls, wands and magical staves may not be used in a form that cannot speak. If they are used, the item is visible. Potions, healing kits, traps and thieves tools cannot be used in a form without hands. Powers from other items including rods, any worn item, and weapons, may be activated at will in any form but are visible when being used.


Custom Race System