Cafters (3.5e Race)

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Cafters are social to a frightening degree. Cafters will constantly engage their friends (a category that, to them, seems to include everyone who isn't currently attacking them) in conversation or other activities. Even the most timid and quiet cafters get very close to their allies, seemingly oblivious to the concept of personal space. A cafter that is alone will quickly begin exhibiting symptoms of depression, and will attempt to contact even people who might be a danger to them.

Cafters are very systematic, enjoy cleanliness, and tend to have peculiar, repetitive habits - clicking their tongue a certain number of times and the like. These features, combined with their social mania, mean cafters make excellent butlers, cooks and janitors, when they haven't taken up to adventuring profession. Due to their extremely short lifespans - cafters rarely make it past thirty - cafters throw themselves at things and professions with a fervor, and although they can never achieve the mastery of longer-lived races, they get good extremely fast.

Physical Description[edit]

Looks can be deceiving.

In a word, cafters look like giant rats that stand on two feet. This description doesn't do them justice, though: first, it tends to evoke thoughts of disgust and hatred in the less-educated; and second, there are key differences between a rat and a cafter. Their eyes are the most notable difference: cafters have large, very human eyes that can be various shades of red, orange and green. The mouths of cafters are also less jawlike than that of their visual counterpart, with lips and less-pronounced (although still large) incisors.

Due to how their eyes work, cafters perceive color in a very muted way, and have trouble differentiating reds from each other. Thus, they go for garishly colored clothes and jewelery, mostly in the blue-green range. The cafter's ability to see ultraviolet light might be a contributing factor into their cleanliness: once you can see urine stains, you tend to take better care of your hygiene. Cafters have claws that are only slighty more threatening than human nails, and their quasi-prehensile tails are a point of pride to most of them.

Something could be said about cafter racial variations, which in a word is massive. Humans can have different hair, skin and eye colors, but these are fairly minor compared to the differences of different strains of cafter. Some are smaller, with more pronounced incisors and rounder ears; others are bent over with mottled gray fur and gnarled backs; others still might lack fur entirely, and possess eerily long tails.


Cafters get along great with everyone, even when everyone doesn't get along well with cafters. Most cafters consider it a point of pride to have friends in many different creeds, races and social classes (cafters themselves lack classes and castes in their own societies). There's practically no single race that cafters find repulsive, although any race that is filthy or antisocial might put off a cafter somewhat.

This doesn't mean cafters are friends with everyone they meet. They're still individuals, with personalities and dislikes. That said, a cafter is less likely to be actively hostile to anyone, and will more often than not make friends of their enemies, if at all possible. They're capable of violence and warfare, but shy away from it if the possibility arises, and prefer quick shows of dominance to extended hostility.


Cafters tend strongly towards good due to their sociable and genuine nature. Cafter personality leans somewhat towards lawful, what with their systematic nature and orderliness, but cafter societies have no such leaning. Neutral Good is probably the most common alignment among cafters.


Contrary to what someone might assume from their outward appearance, cafters are skilled builders in their natural element: earth. What dwarves can do to stone, cafters can do to dirt. Their passion rarely extends as far as a dwarf's, though, and cafter abodes are much smaller and simpler in design, although immaculately excavated. Cafters invariably live among others, either their own kind or else in urban centers of other races, especially those of gnomes.


Cafters have few gods of their own, but they do take up the religions of others when living in their lands quite often. Carl Glittergold, the god of gnomes, is a common target of worship, as is Moradin the All-Father.


One would perhaps assume a rat-like race to speak a language of squeaks and whines. Not so: cafters have no racial language of their own, instead speaking both Common and Undercommon as they live between the two worlds. Cafters like to learn new languages and have quite a knack for it: they quickly learn to pronounce even the strangest tongues, the better to socialize with.


Cafter names have Undercommon origins, and often incorporate elements of the gnomish and dwarven languages. Cafters have traditionally had no surnames, but the expectation of other races has moulded their culture to a point where they often (but not always) adopt a descriptive surname, often a simple statement about their personality or their appearance.

Male Names: Caronock, Farhin, Grund, Seero, Tarvin

Female Names: Arami, Lamella, Morianne, Veinaru, Zonede

Surnames: Who Enjoys Chess, Who Is Red, Who Kills Ettercaps, Who Speaks Many Tongues

Racial Traits[edit]

The natural qualities of cafters make them excellent archers.
  • +2 Dexterity, -2 Strength: Cafters are quick on their feet and their tails give them extra balance, but their wiry bodies showcase their physical feebleness aptly.
  • Humanoid (Cafter): While somewhat strange, cafters are most definitely humanoids.
  • Small: As a Small creature, a cafter gains a +1 size bonus to Armor Class, a +1 size bonus on attack rolls, and a +4 size bonus on Hide checks, but he uses smaller weapons than humans use, and his lifting and carrying limits are three-quarters of those of a Medium character.
  • Cafter base land speed is 20 feet.
  • Darkvision: Cafters can see in the dark up to 60 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and a cafter can function just fine with no light at all.
  • Pack Fighter: Cafters are light on their feet and skilled at fighting as groups. As a swift action, a cafter can designate a single opponent. When the cafter is adjacent to the chosen target, he can choose to count as occupying any other square he threatens for purposes of determining flanking bonuses for him and his allies. The cafter also occupies his current square for flanking an opponent.
  • Prehensile Tail: Cafters have a quasi-prehensile tail that can grasp objects. However, the tail is slower than a normal appendage, and far too weak to be the equivalent of a hand. A cafter can't wield weapons or use items with their tail, but they can hold a single nonmagical object, such as a lantern, with it. A cafter benefits from the Quick Draw feat to retrieve objects held in their tail.
  • Linguist: Speak Language is a class skill for a cafter, regardless of their class.
  • Automatic Languages: Common and Undercommon. Bonus Languages: Giant, Gnome, Gnoll, Halfling.
  • Favored Class: Rogue
  • Level Adjustment: +0

Vital Statistics[edit]

Table: Cafter Random Starting Ages
Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
5 years +1d3 +1d4 +1d6
Table: Cafter Aging Effects
Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
15 years 20 years 25 years +1d6 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: Cafter Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 3' 0" +2d4 30 lb. × 1 lb.
Female 3' 0" +2d4 25 lb. × 1 lb.

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