Woodcrafter (5e Race)
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|“||They're a strange lot, they are. Not the prettiest faces ever, and they all cultivate these weird short trees that they use for their homes. The druids they share the forest with do not like them one bit because of it, but those ear-handed folks seem to mind their own business.||”|
|—An unknown individual|
Though rarely seen outside of the forests they call home, these mostly herbivorous creatures prefer to eke out an unassuming existence among the trees. Because of their nature and behavior, they sometimes come into conflict with druidic circles. While said conflicts are uncommon, this results in woodcrafters chased out of the forests they call home being forced into humanoid civilization or into adventuring parties.
|A pair of Woodcrafters. Source|
These three-legged creatures have soft fur and strange, almost beak-like jaws that protrude from their mouths. Their most noticeable trait, however, is their large, dexterous, and almost arm-like ears. Males are typically larger than females, and said males have a patch of iridescent fur on their necks that appears reddish-purple under most light.
Like halflings, the history of woodcrafters is largely unremarkable. Also much like halflings, records and evidence indicates that the woodcrafters, as a race, appeared fairly recently, and do not have a unified culture to call their own. One notable event that involved these beings occurred during the Siege of Neverwinter, where a woodcrafter village had attacked and chased away a contingent of Thayan forces. This village was later known to have scavenged materials from the fallen soldiers, with the members of that village becoming the first ever woodcrafters to become versed in the magical arts.
Despite their bizarre appearance, woodcrafters are benign beings that prefer to be left to their own devices. Their society is decentralized and self-governing, composed of villages of multiple family groups. with little in the way of authoritative governing bodies. Order is maintained by smaller groups without central leadership even on a small scale, and any individuals that break accepted social rules (such as intentionally harming another of their kind) may be exiled. However, the fear of isolation is so great among woodcrafters that these groups provide a very strong deterrent to bad behavior. Their basic social structures are generally extended, multigenerational families, which can be quite large, as polygamy is the norm for males, but females have much more freedom to choose husbands and move between groups within a single village. Woodcrafters do not form pair bonds as mates and all individuals in a group assist in caring for the young, not only their biological parents. Ritualized competition among males is universal and often considered a spectacle by outsiders, but is considered largely irrelevant towards which males actually get to reproduce, as most of them have the opportunity to do so. However, the most popular males may get more chances and a wider choice of partners in a manner similar to celebrities.
In their villages, their lives revolve around cultivating a special species of tree that they use for almost all aspects of their lives. Skilled gardeners by nature, they trim and groom large tracts of these plants to maximize its productivity to themselves, regularly removing overgrown or dead branches and cutting back woody trunks regularly to encourage the growth of nutritious green shoots. Woodcrafters also destroy competitive and inedible plants and plant-like creatures such as assassin vines, corpse flowers, shambling mounds, blights and yellow musk creepers. These creatures also violently attack and chase away entities that would otherwise destroy both their trees as well as native plants and animals, such as owlbears, undead, orcs, gnolls and even demons. Woodcrafters utilize few tools, as their jaws and 'arm-ears' are typically suitable for most tasks. However, their 'arm-ears' not ideal for fine tasks, as the three primary prongs which function as fingers have a limited range of motion and are permanently hooked downward. Despite this, some woodcrafters can weave baskets and bags of bark and twigs to carry materials, and if pushed, a woodcrafter can wield a sword and shield. They also build structures from the trunks of living trees, carefully braiding and grafting multiple trunks that grow from a common root stock into defensive fences, bridges over rivers, and the rounded, basket-like homes in which they live. The process can take years or even decades, and as a result, woodcrafters constantly work on different houses in preparation for future needs, using the same trees they cultivate for food. However, if a woodcrafter village works in conjunction with a druidic circle that tolerates their presence, this process can take a few minutes. It is traditional for a female woodcrafter to begin shaping a house when she realizes she is pregnant and to continue guiding its growth until her child is independent and can move into the new dwelling.
Woodcrafters also have a strong artistic sense and enjoy creating gardens that are not only functional but also appeal to their sense of beauty. For example, one woodcrafter's garden could be planted in varying, natural patterns without straight lines, and have flowers and entirely decorative plants growing in the garden primarily for novelty. They also engage in shaping topiary to create shrubs and trees depicting realistic portraiture, models of wild beasts, or even abstract creatures from lore. Highly vocal, woodcrafters love to tell stories, embellishing them for drama and eventually creating tall tales that they tell to their children. Over time, these stories can become myths and folklore as they are passed down from generation to generation. Yet they broadly reject restrictive dogma on the basis of religion, a fact which is known to upset many druidic circles. Woodcrafters place strong values on dismantling oppression wherever it is found, which can lead them coming into conflict with especially controlling druidic circles. Woodcrafters use body language heavily, particularly eyebrow movements, as well as antler gestures. Body language can be used to convey some ideas alone, but is usually used in conjunction with spoken speech. Though dialects vary, a whistling, shrill verbal language, lisping and somewhat reminiscent of the bugles of an elk, is universal. Other races find the woodcrafter language difficult to replicate, and woodcrafters find the languages of humanoid races similarly difficult.
Because of their unique language and difficulty understanding other languages, woodcrafter names are typically in their own language, which will hereby be referred to as WCL.
Tripodal creatures that cultivate trees for their own uses.
Ability Score Increase. Your Dexterity score decreases by 1 and your Intelligence score increases by 2.
Age. Woodcrafters become mature at 12 years old. They live for about 60 to 80 years before they die of natural causes.
Alignment. Woodcrafters are typically neutral creatures, but those that side with good or evil are not unheard of.
Size. Woodcrafters usually stand around 5 feet tall and typically weigh 120 pounds. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Beastial Nature. Your creature type is beast.
Natural Gardener. You roll with advantage on Wisdom (Nature) checks involving the identification of flora.
Bizarre Shape. You are unable to use normal armor, and armor made specifically for you takes 1.5 times as long to make than regular armor.
Alien Appearance. You roll with disadvantage on Charisma (Persuasion) and Deception checks.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write WCL and one other language of your choice.
Random Height and Weight
|5′ 1″||+1d6||120 lb.||× (1d3) lb.|
*Height = base height + height modifier