Medusa (5e Race)

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Medusa[edit]

You're going to decorate the patio nicely.
—Seconds before disaster...

Physical Description[edit]

Medusa-5e.png
As seen in the 5th edition Monster Manual

Medusae are a monstrous race of creatures that appear superficially similar to a beautiful humanoid, however, up close their inhuman traits are revealed. Their skin tone is almost too grey with tough small scales no larger than a centimetre covering their body. Rather than hair, they have long serpents that hiss and bite at any creature unfortunate enough to attract a medusas anger. The last difference many creatures will see before they die is the clear pupilless eyes of a medusa.

History[edit]

As deadly as they are ravishing, the serpent-haired medusa suffers a horrific curse brought on by its own vanity. They lurk in quiet exile among the tumbled ruins of their former lives, surrounded by the petrified remains of past admirers and would-be heroes. Though often enough the ambition that drove many of them into this state still burns and they use their curse to break, bend and dominate lesser creatures into submission as they endlessly seek to gain back what was promised to them.

Society[edit]

While ambitious humanoids seeking eternal youth, beauty, and adoration are common, those who do eventually find a being as powerful and malicious enough to inflict the medusa curse is rare. A medusa may go several human lifetimes before ever meeting another one of their kind. All the while finding comfort in the presence of other serpentine beings such as the yuan-ti, who often hold them in high regard. Medusae also get along well with tieflings, sharing as they do a shared cursed ancestry and the suspicion of the common people. A less than known fact about the medusa's curse is the infertility that comes with it, causing them to be unable to produce more of their kind and further dooming them to solitude.

Medusa Names[edit]

Medusa are created from a curse, and as such, they use the same naming conventions as their native culture. Given the origin of the legend of the medusa comes from Roman and Greek cultures names from those schemes would also be appropriate.

Medusa Traits[edit]

As deadly as they are ravishing, a serpent-haired medusa suffers an immortal curse brought on by its own vanity.
Ability Score Increase. You Dexterity, Constitution and Charisma scores each increase by 1.
Age. One of the assortment of gifts the tobe medusa gains is immortality. Only now does it see the dual nature of this so-called gift often forced to live in seclusion, alienated from the world around them by their monstrous form and caprice.
Alignment. Created from a paradoxical curse, a medusa is a creature of vanity and hubris tending towards lawful evil. The mortals that are afflicted by this curse often becoming so before the curse takes place as they methodically take what they want to achieve their ultimate vanity.
Size. While a medusa typically stands a bit taller than the average human, they weigh almost as much as a goliath as they move with a haughty grace that rivals elves. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Darkvision. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Monsterosity. Your creature type is both humanoid and monstrosity.
Parseltongue. You can communicate with snakes as if you shared a language and have advantage on all Charisma checks you make to influence them.
Petrifying Gaze. At 3rd level, as an action, you fix your gaze on one creature whose eye you can see within 60 feet of you. The creature must make a Constitution saving throw or begin to turn to stone becoming restrained. The DC for this saving throw is equal to 8 + your Charisma modifier + your proficiency bonus. The restrained creature can repeat the saving throw when it takes damage and at the end of its next turn, ending the effect on a success. If the creature fails three saves against this effect it becomes petrified. The petrification lasts until the creature is freed by a greater restoration spell or similar magic. Once you use this trait, you can't use it again until you finish a long rest.
Snake Hair. When you make a successful melee attack against a creature within 5 feet of you, you can make a special attack with your serpentine hair as a bonus action. The creature then takes poison damage equal to your level, and you can't use this trait again until you finish a short or long rest.
Stone Skin. You may be heavy but your skin is as hard as stone. When you aren't wearing armor, your AC is 13 + your Dexterity modifier. You can use your natural armor to determine your AC if the armor you wear would leave you with a lower AC. A shield's benefits apply as normal while you use your natural armor.
Languages. You can speak, read and write Common.

Ravnica Variant: Undercity Medusa[edit]

In Ravnica medusa's are still a monstrous race of creatures that appear superficially similar to beautiful humanoid women. However, unlike them, their skin doesn't resemble stone but is more similar to the scales of a fish, their hair a writhing mass of black, serpentine cables rather then literal snakes, and their once delicate hands are now sharp scaled claws.

Ability Score Increase. You Constitution score increases by 1, and two other ability scores of your choice also increase by 1.
Age. Medusas live forever typically in seclusion, alienated from the world around them by their monstrous form and caprice.
Alignment. Created from a paradoxical curse, a medusa is a creature of vanity and hubris tending towards neutral evil. The mortals that are afflicted by this curse often becoming so before the curse takes place as they methodically take what they want to achieve their ultimate vanity.
Size. While a medusa typically stands a bit taller than the average human, they weigh almost as much as a goliath as they move with a haughty grace that rivals elves. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Ambusher. If you surprise a creature and hit it with an attack on your first turn in combat, the attack deals an extra 2d6 damage to it. You can use this trait only once per combat.
Claws. Your scaly claws are natural weapons, which you can use to make unarmed strikes. If you hit with them, you deal slashing damage equal to 1d4 + your Strength or Dexterity modifier, instead of the bludgeoning damage normal for an unarmed strike.
Darkvision. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Magic Resilience. You are naturally resistant to magical effects. When you fail a saving throws against a spell or other magical effect, you can re-roll the die and must use the new roll. Once you use this trait you can't use it again until you finish a short or long rest.
Monsterosity. Your creature type is both humanoid and monstrosity.
Petrifying Gaze. At 3rd level, as an action, you fix your gaze on one creature whose eye you can see within 60 feet of you. The creature must make a Constitution saving throw or begin to turn to stone becoming restrained. The DC for this saving throw is equal to 8 + your Charisma modifier + your proficiency bonus. The restrained creature can repeat the saving throw when it takes damage and at the end of its next turn, ending the effect on a success. If the creature fails three saves against this effect it becomes petrified. The petrification lasts until the creature is freed by a greater restoration spell or similar magic. Once you use this trait, you can't use it again until you finish a long rest.
Languages. You can speak, read and write Common and Elvish.

Random Height and Weight[edit]

Base
Height
Height
Modifier*
Base
Weight
Weight
Modifier**
4′ 10″ +2d8 180 lb. × (2d10) lb.

*Height = base height + height modifier
**Weight = base weight + (height modifier × weight modifier)


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