Races of Athas forum thread

This is a place to discuss the races of Athas.

Wed Oct 12, 2005 2:52 am
Character Generation: Races of Athas
For Chaos Out of Order I have decided to follow the Dragon Magazine Issue #319 Dark Sun campaign setting races. While the role playing information from the TSR books and The Burnt World of Athas files are all valid, I disagree with the following sidebar from page 4 of The Burnt World of Athas Dark Sun 3.5 document:
Behind the Veil: Attributes

In Dark Sun 3, attributes are generated using the same methods as standard D&D: Either the 4d6 drop one method described in the Player’s Handbook, or the point buy method described in the Dungeon Master’s Guide.

Previous editions of Dark Sun used a rolling method that produced, on average, higher stats: 4d4+4. This was supposed to convey that Athas was a much harsher world than normal D&D campaign worlds, and that its denizens had adapted to compensate.

However, the meaning of an attribute has changed in 3e, and attributes start having a positive effect much sooner than they did in AD&D2. Whereas many stats in AD&D2 didn’t start having a positive effect until they were at least 14, in 3e stats as low as 12 have a positive effect. Using higher overall attributes for characters in Dark Sun actually makes it easier for characters to survive and overcome obstacles that should be challenging, which would mean that the effective difficulty of a Dark Sun campaign would actually be lower using this stat generation method.
I felt that the Dragon Magazine Dark Sun Player’s Handbook was truer to the original setting, as outlined on page 19:

There are twelve PC races to choose from in the Dark Sun campaign. Dark Sun PC races – even those from the Player’s Handbook and Expanded Psionics Handbook – are often more powerful than their standard versions, and all have a level adjustment of +1 or +2. The harsh world of Dark Sun produces tough people, and characters in the campaign begin play able to face greater threats. For fans of the old Dark Sun setting, this emulates the tougher races it presented and the rule that players must begin play with 4th-level characters.
This gave racial bonuses to attributes. After 300 years the non-versitile races (i.e. those races which don’t get to pick any extra skill and any extra feat, but instead have a specific set of skill and feat bonuses) stabilized their attribute bonuses along racial lines. It made so much sense, that I consider it an improvement over the original system from Dark Sun 2.0.

Another reason I went with the Dragon Magazine article “Dark Sun Setting & Races” was that it gave everyone psionics, just as the original setting. However, instead of granting a wild talent power to non-psions, after 300 years the non-versitile races stabilized their psionic abilities along racial lines and granted them to their members reguardless of class. It also made so much sense, that I consider it another improvement over the original system from Dark Sun 2.0.

I also liked the Dragon & Dungeon Dark Sun 3.5 campaign setting idea of setting the world calendar ahead 300 years. I had bought the first several months worth of supplements before our gaming group desolved, and so I never knew where the metaplot went from there. The jump 300 years ahead allowed me to avoid a lot of reseach and provided me with two new races: the elan and maenads. I liked how Dragon inserted them into the Dark Sun mythos, and good thing too, as Kitty ended up picking a maenad!

So, that is why we’re using the Dragon Magazine Issue #319 Dark Sun races in Chaos Out of Order. Any questions or comments?
Sat Aug 05, 2006 6:15 am
Races of Athas (TSR Supplements)
Well, now that I have copies of Elves of Athas and Thri-Kreen of Athas , I’ll be incorportaing elements from both. As such, I’d like the players whose characters are of these races to read the following:
EoA p. 23-24 (Independent Spirit), 24 (Elves and Love), 24-26 (Elven Honour), 35-36 (City Life), 36-38 (Wilderness Life), 40 (Language and Nonenclature), 43-44 (Courtship and Other Customs), and 90 (Free-Wanderer).
TKoA p. 35-36 (Venom and Crystal), 52 (Weapon Size, 2nd bullet), 52 (Handedness), 66-67 (Trade), 68-69 (Without the Clutch, whole section except How the Cities Treat Thri-Kreen), 70-73 (Language and Communication), and 78 (The Thri-Kreen “Nations”).
Players can certainly read more. However, as these books are set almost 300 years in the past they should not expect elven tribes and tohr-kreen lathuks to be in the same state as listed within.
Sat Aug 05, 2006 7:28 pm
Eek! :shocked:

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Races of Athas forum thread

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