Kodan (5e Race)
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"If you would watch and learn, then watch and learn, and you shall protect and guide the spirits of this world."
The kodan are a race of intelligent polar bear-like beings from the distant northern lands and seas. The kodan are eight to ten feet tall and bipedal. They resemble polar bears, with their white fur and muscular limbs, and are often seen adorned in armor and red cloth. The lifespan of the kodan is not fully known, but some can live for centuries. There is considerable debate among scholars and kodan Voices over whether the kodan are distant cousins of the norn.
According to the histories of the kodan, the world was created long ago by Koda, and with it, the spirits of the world. Over time, these spirits began to take form, becoming the beasts of the world we see today. One day, the bear stood up and took notice of the restlessness and chaos, of the endless cycles of creation and destruction. And Koda took notice, and offered the bear guardianship of the world, tasking them with guiding the lesser spirits to enlightenment. Those that accepted his offer, became the kodan.
Kodan are a highly spiritual race that for centuries has lived in cities built upon, and carved into, icebergs in the arctic seas known as Sanctuaries. Their society is divided into tribes, each one having their own iceberg and leaders. The kodan live in close communities upon their Sanctuaries, acting in concert and living in peace. The kodan are not without disputes and disagreements, but they consider themselves "above" most interpersonal conflict. To them, balance is more important than an individual's needs and the will of their god, Koda, supersedes any single kodan's wishes. Each member of the tribe contributes and works to maintain peace, encouraging the sharing of resources, and provide support for others within the Sanctuary. Kodan young are said to be weak and easily susceptible to outside influence. As such, they are heavily guarded and rarely—if ever—seen by outsiders.
Their Sanctuaries both act as shelters and as spiritual havens. Within the core of the Sanctuaries lie shrines to Koda and the Voice of the tribe and iceberg city. The kodan are a highly religious race, with their beliefs of balance and Koda at the core of their culture and society.
Each tribe has two equally important leaders: the Voice and the Claw. The Voice is the spiritual leader of a tribe, passing on messages of Koda and giving guidance to the Claw. They are capable of sensing the balance of the Sanctuary and the world around it. The Claw is the physical leader of the tribe, protecting the Sanctuary and the Voice, and turns the Voice's words into actions. Outside a small group of shamans, who tend to the Voice's needs to keep him alive, only the Claw may speak to the Voice. The Claw also leads the hunters and warriors of the Sanctuary. Neither of the two leaders has the power to overturn the others' decisions.
The Claw and Voice are often chosen at the same time, and end their rule together. If one dies, it is tradition for the other to retire. Between these two kodan, the Sanctuary of the tribe is very organized.
The kodan choose their own names, basing it off of their personality, past, actions, occupations, or something that they find suitable. In essence, they chose a name which they feel describes them best. As such, their names are usually descriptions or nouns of some form. For example, Still Waters chose his name to remind himself of a past event and Farthest Shore took that name because she felt distant from her people. Kodan will also change their names to suit their evolving personalities or changed circumstances, for example, Watchful Moon changed his name from "Laughs at the Dawn" after his wife died. It is unknown how newborn kodan names are treated.
A wise, seafaring race of bipedal polar bears.
Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 2 and your Strength score increases by 1.
Age. Kodan have a lifespan of around 300 years.
Alignment. Kodan consider themselves to be guardians of nature's spirits and hold themselves above interpersonal conflict. As such, they tend toward law, neutrality, and good.
Size. Kodan stand between 8 and 10 feet tall. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 25 feet. You also have a swimming speed of 30 feet.
Powerful Build. You count as one size larger when determining your carrying capacity and the weight you can push, drag, or lift.
Arctic Survivor. You can hold your breath for up to 15 minutes at a time. You're also naturally adapted to cold climates.
Wisdom of Koda. You gain proficiency with two of the following skills of your choice: Insight, Nature, Religion, Medicine, and Survival.
Bite. Your fanged maw is a natural weapon, which you can use to make unarmed strikes. If you hit with it, you deal piercing damage equal to 1d6 + your Strength modifier, instead of the bludgeoning damage normal for an unarmed strike.
Koda's Flame. You know one cantrip of your choice from the following list: produce flame, create bonfire, or word of radiance. Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for this spell.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and one other language of your choice.