[House Rules] Cultural Templates

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
Has anybody thought of adding cultural templates
in addition to Conan's racial templates? Alejandro
Melchior, in Signs & Portents #6, had a great article
on adding cultural templates to all d20 characters. The OGC
mechanics are revised by me here for use with Conan.

Combining Cultural Templates: If your culture
qualifies for more than one cultural template, you may
mix and match the most favourable elements.

Racial Templates and Favoured Classes:
Cultural templates that offer a different favoured class
than the one given for your race allow you to pick
either as your favoured class.

Class Skills:
As presented in the S&P article, templates that offer class skills give you a +1 bonus in the skills that appear on your current class skill list; if you switch to a class that does not list 'em as a class skill, you lose the +1 bonus, but may continue to treat 'em as a class skill. This seems complicated (who's going to remember this? Not me!). I suggest instead two simpler solutions: 1) that they always remain class skills regardless of class (not in keeping with Conan racial templates), or 2) you get two free bonus ranks in the skills.

Options To Implement Cultural Templates:
As presented in the S&P article...
1) You get them if you give up your first level bonus feat; or
2) Everybody (PCs and NPCs) gets them in addition to their racial template.


CULTURAL TEMPLATES
Agrarian
Favoured Class: Barbarian, Borderer or Commoner.
Bonus Feat/Ability: +2 to all Craft/Profession checks.
Class Skills: Handle Animal, Heal.
Races: Black Kingdoms, Bossonian, Brythunian,
Cimmerian, Gunderman, Hyperborean, Nordheimer,
Tauran.

Dark Age
Favoured Class: Soldier.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Alertness.
Disability: Skill point cost for cross class knowledge
skills becomes 3 instead of 2.
Races: Aquilonian, Corinthian, Khauran, Kothian,
Nemedian, Ophirian.

Decadent
Favoured Class: Noble.
Bonus Feat/Ability: +2 Will saves vs. fear/terror.
Disability: -2 Sense Motive checks, and -1 Will saves
vs. Corruption.
Races: Acheronian (S&P #6), Chaga, Corinthian,
Khitan, Kothian, Nemedian, Ophirian, Pelishtim
(Shemite), Stygian, Turanian, Vendhyan, Zamorian,
Zingaran.

Hills or Mountains
Favoured Class: Barbarian.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Endurance.
Class Skills: Balance, Climb and Jump.
Races: Cimmerian, Himelian Tribesman, Nordheimer,
Wazuli, Zamorian (Karpashian or Kezankian
Hillman).

Nomadic
Favoured Class: Nomad.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Endurance or Track.
Class Skills: Knowledge (Geography), Knowledge
(Nature), Survival.
Races: Brythunian, Ghanata, Hyrkanian, Shemite
(Eastern Nomad).

Sylvan or Jungle
Favoured Class: Barbarian, Borderer.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Endurance or Track.
Class Skills: Hide, Knowledge (nature), Move
Silently, Survival.
Races: Cimmerian, Kushite, Nordheimer, Pict, Tauran.

Temple Builder
Favoured Class: Noble, Scholar, Soldier.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Iron Will.
Class Skills: Diplomacy, Knowledge (Engineering),
Knowledge (Religion).
Races: Acheronian (S&P #6), Khitain, Stygian,
Vendhyan.

Trader
Favoured Class: Noble.
Bonus Feat/Ablity: 1) +4 Survival checks to determine
direction and true North, even if he does not have 5
ranks in Survival. This bonus does not apply to other
uses of the Survival skill; and 2) +4 Sense Motive
checks against opposed Bluff checks in non-combat
situations.
Disability: Others get +2 to Sense Motive checks
opposed to your Bluff checks made in non-combat
situations.
Class Skills: Appraise, Bluff and Sense Motive.
Races: Argossean, Meadow Shemite, Nordheimer
(Vanir only), Pelishtim Shemite, Zingaran.

Underground
Favoured Class: Thief.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Blindfight.
Disability: Dazed in bright light.
Clas Skills: Knowledge (Dungeoneering), Listen,
Move Silently.
Races: Certan long-term residents of the Pit
(underground Thieves' Quarter) in Kordava, ghouls,
degenerate inbred descendants of dead civilizations
living underground.

Warrior
Favoured Class: Barbarian, Soldier.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Choose one: 1) Armour
Proficiency (any one: Light, Medium or Heavy); 2)
Exotic Weapon Proficiency (any one); or 3) Weapon
Focus (any one).
Class Skills: Craft (armoursmithing or
weaponsmithing, choose one), Handle Animal, and
Intimidate.
Races: Aquilonian, Bossonian, Cimmerian,
Gunderman, Hyperborean, Kothian, Kushite,
Nemedian, Nordheimer, Pict, Zingaran

Waterborne
Favoured Class: Pirate.
Bonus Feat/Ability: Choose one: 1) A swim speed
equal to your land speed; 2) you may hold your breath
twice as long as normal; or 3) +2 bonus to CON
checks to avoid or lessen damage from drowning,
pressure or hypothermia (cold).
Class Skills: Profession (Sailor), Spot, Swim.
Races: Argossean, Barachan Islander, Nordheimer
(Vanir only), Southern Islander, Turanian, Zingaran


Signs & Portents #6, in addition to Cultural Templates, also had exclusive Conan content: The evil Acheronians as a playable race, plus complete chariot combat rules (chariots are still used extensively in Stygia, and also were used in long-dead Acheron--both the four horse Acheronian and two horse Stygian chariots are covered in the article).
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Thanks for the information they certainly look interesting.

Unfortunately I missed the original article explaining how they should be implemented.

Do characters get them AS WELL AS their usual racial bonuses?

Do they balance because EVERYBODYS got them, PCs and NPCs too?

Thanks!

Andy
 

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
Anonymous said:
Thanks for the information they certainly look interesting.

Unfortunately I missed the original article explaining how they should be implemented.

Do characters get them AS WELL AS their usual racial bonuses?

Do they balance because EVERYBODYS got them, PCs and NPCs too?

Thanks!

Andy

There are two options presented in the article:

1) You get them if you give up your first level bonus feat; or
2) Everybody (PCs and NPCs) gets them in addition to their racial template.
 

InsomNY

Mongoose
I didn't see the article on which you've based your post, but I'd have to vote Nay on this one, Chef. It's not that the idea lacks merit of its own, but that it overlaps much of what's built into the Conan "races" already.

I would wholeheartedly recommend it to help fill out a more generic world that lacks flavor, which I gather was the purpose of the S&P article. Since Hyborian Earth is practically a spice rack unto itself, I don't see a need to tack cultural profiles on as well.

Option #1, where players give up their 1st level feats to acquire the package, seems to more reasonable approach if you should choose to implement the suggestions. Even still, in several cases the player is giving up a feat in order to gain a feat as well as class skills or a miscellaneous bonus, and thus gives up nothing at all. Not all of the packages have penalties, and the trader's penalty in particular makes little sense in light of his bonus.

It might be interesting to allow the packages for NPC commoners (and only commoners) so that they are more than just bumpkins.
 

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
InsomNY said:
I didn't see the article on which you've based your post, but I'd have to vote Nay on this one, Chef. It's not that the idea lacks merit of its own, but that it overlaps much of what's built into the Conan "races" already.

Oh, well. Can't win 'em all! ...Back to the drawing board. :wink:
 
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