Mixed Races in Conan


I'm stumped by a character background one of my players has offered, and we can't figure out what racial template is appropriate. The character is a Nordheimer female who was taken as a slave by Hyperborians as a young child, initially raised as a pleasure slave, then sent to the gladiator pits when she proved defiant. She's going to be a temptress/barbarian, so the player tells me.

What we can't decide is whether race or upbringing is the defining characteristic. Should she have Nordheimer or Hyperborian racial traits?
The first questoin to ask is how young? If the child is less than about 4 years old, mentally she'd be hyperborean while still being Nordheim physically.

Older than that, and it's likely she'd remember enough to be considered Nordheim physically and mentally.

A lot it will depend on how great the differential in treatment is - if the Nordheimers (or parents, whatever) treated her gently, and the Hyperboreans harshly, then she'd be more likely to cling to Nordheim ways and beliefs. Most pleasure slaves are not ill treated by any means, mostly cause it's counterproductive, and you don't want the woman you're schtucking to have a reason to slit your throat while you're atop her - or giver her a reason to use teeth, as it were.

If you really can't decide, roll a die.


Well, she (the player) intends that her character is more Nordheimer than Hyperborean, but with an unusual upbringing. Essentially this is going to come down to GM fiat, but I'd like to explore my basis for making a final decision. On an unrelated note, we used the D&D method for determining the character's vital stats, and she rolled the maximum height for a female character - 6'1". Hoo boy.
I'm a bit far from my books atm, but I don't believe anything in the Conan races is game breaking...so I'd probly give her Nordheim physical traits, and Hyperborean skills, feats and languages, but not Nordheim ones.

Unless, of course, there was a convenient Nordheiman slave woman there to teach her the ways of the Nordheim people, in which case she could pick and choose betwen the Nordheim and Hyperborean packages.


Thanks for the advice, FD. I'm still not absolutely certain how I'll handle it, but your ideas are certainly reasonable. I'll probably wind up doing that. I'm surprised that this hasn't been handled elsewhere; I would imagine I'm not the only person who's asked this question.
How about this:

Nordheim "template" to represent the origins.

To represent the Hyperborean education use the normal skill points / feats every character gets.
I would say just straight Nordhiemer. Nothing stick out in her background to make me think she should be anything other than that. She doiesn't seemed to have been assimulated into the Nordhiem culture. If she really is a mismash of the two cultures just make her Hyborian. That's the generic race. Offer the possibility to give up the bonus fate point and adaptability for the racial ability modifiers of the Nordhiem.