I'm going to be playing a changeling (from UA: Eberron) soon, and my DM is excited to have this unique race as a PC, but I was wondering if there was some form of RAW on this sort of thing.

The Changeling race's Shapechanger trait simply states:

Shapechanger. As an action, you can polymorph into any humanoid of your size that you have seen, or back into your true form. However, your equipment does not change with you. If you die, you revert to your natural appearance.

There is no age section in the Changeling race stats, and I am just curious as to what its lifespan and maturity rate would be. I thought that it could potentially be based on the species it is polymorphed into.

Let's say that this changeling has been in human form for 50 years. Has this form aged accordingly, or does it appear to remain the age at which you first polymorphed into it? Also, let's say that the form you've chosen has reached an elderly state; could said changeling simply polymorph into a much younger version of this form, prolonging its lifespan?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Note to readers: this question asks about the version of the race from the very first UA in 2015. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Nov 23 '19 at 6:56

There isn't an officially stated lifespan for Changelings (as of writing this answer).

The most important thing to remember is that Unearthed Arcana material is only effectively playtest material. It's not "officially" published or polished and thus isn't nearly fleshed out as much as the core rule books or supplements so you're not likely to find that level of detail until it's actually put into a supplement book, if it even does.

There's only one other mention of changelings that I can find and that relates to doppelganger children in the Monster Manual but even that doesn't give us any information on their lifespan.

However, if you really want something to base it off and get a rough idea then it has been detailed in the 4e Eberron Player's Guide (unfortunately I can't speak for older editions):

Changelings reach maturity at about fifteen years of age, and they live about as long as humans do.

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    \$\begingroup\$ (For D&D 3.5e the Eberron Campaign Setting on page 27 lists changelings living for a maximum of 70+2d20 years.) \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jun 26 '17 at 7:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ I found both of the references you are both referring to before I posted this question. Neither one is similar, or else I would have just used one of those as my answer. That's why I was trying to see if anyone here has seen a more current or (though it sounds stupid) more official ruling on this. I understand this is unearthed arcana, though, so I'll take any answer that is the most reasonable. \$\endgroup\$ – He Who Rules As Intended Jun 26 '17 at 7:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ Note that 70+2d20 is "about as long as humans live", as that gives a maximum age of anywhere between 72 and 110. So they are similar. \$\endgroup\$ – Erik Jun 26 '17 at 9:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Erik You're absolutely right. That's, in fact, the exact same maximum age given for humans in D&D 3.5e in the Player's Handbook on page 109. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jun 26 '17 at 16:27

There has since been additional official guidance on Changelings.

From The Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron:

Age. Changelings mature slightly faster than humans but share a similar lifespan—typically a century or less. While a changeling can shapeshift to conceal their age, the effects of aging still catch up to them.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Note: the final version of the Changeling race in Eberron: Rising from the Last War and in the updated version of Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron has changed a few things; it doesn't substantially change the quoted text but does rephrase it a bit. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Nov 23 '19 at 2:41


Changelings only take on the appearance of their target, not their other characteristics, such as lifespan. A Changeling mimicking an Elf could probably only get away with it until old age caught up with them. Then suddenly, tragically, Calasgalamelecieledonielle dies as a mere child of 80 for unknown causes... and leaves a weird body behind.

This is based on DnD Beyond guide to Eberron. The writeup specifically says that they live about as long as humans.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think you're wrong, but can you support this? \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jan 18 '19 at 21:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is your answer based on the original version of the race from UA: Eberron (which this question is about), or some later version of the race? \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jan 19 '19 at 5:21
  • \$\begingroup\$ My answer is based on the DnD Beyond writeup. I've edited to reflect this. The original UA: Eberron has been superceded in official rules. \$\endgroup\$ – user47897 Jan 23 '19 at 18:39

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