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I am writing up a custom race for one of my players and just want to check its not too over powered.

Ability Score Increase: Your Strength score increases by 2, and your Constitution score increases by 1.

Age: You are ageless if you maintain your armour and stay in an area with ambient magic (eg. not in an antimagic zone).

Speed: Your base walking speed is 30 feet.

Powerful Build: You count as one size larger when determining your carrying capacity and the weight you can push, drag, or lift.

Languages: You know common and 1 other language.

You are immune to poison, disease and the poisoned condition.

You don’t need to eat, drink or breathe.

You don't sleep, but do need to be powered down for 8 hours a day or suffer a level of exhaustion. While powered down you're still aware of your surroundings and slowly recharge from the ambient magic in the area.

When entering or starting your turn in an Antimagic field you must make a DC 15 Constitution save or be paralyzed, at the end of each of your turns, you can make another Constitution saving throw. On a success, the effect ends and you have advantage on the next save while in this field.

Your rusted armor counts as heavy armour with an AC of 16, if you spend time fixing your armor you can increase your AC. (this goes up to AC 17 and 18 when the party normally would get splint and plate armour)

You are incapable of wearing armor.

When powered down during a long rest you are indistinguishable from a normal suit of armour.


Information about the Party:

The party will be starting from level 1

The player that will be using this race is a hexblade warlock.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Define 'too overpowered'. This race is definitely stronger than a standard race, but what is 'too' strong depends entirely on your perception. \$\endgroup\$ – Theik Jul 16 '18 at 8:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ I dont want the other members of the party to feel like they are weak in comparison to this race. The 2 things I am most worried about is the armor that doesnt need to be bought and just gained over time and the antimagic field effect which I am worried might be too steep a cost. The party will be encountering beholders and other antimagic zone effects throughout the campaign. \$\endgroup\$ – Jetpack Jul 16 '18 at 8:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ Have you considered re-skinning the Warforged race from Unearthed Arcana? Available here: media.wizards.com/2015/downloads/dnd/UA_Eberron_v1.1.pdf \$\endgroup\$ – A Very Large Bear Jul 16 '18 at 8:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ Are you (or him) just trying to create a dnd version of Alphonse Elric? :-) \$\endgroup\$ – J.E Jul 16 '18 at 10:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ Jetpack: You edited in information about the changes you planned to make based on @Vigil's answer. I've edited that information back out; you should accept the relevant answer instead, and maybe reply with a comment saying that you plan to make those particular changes. (RPG.SE should not be directly used for iterative design.) ...Actually, it might not be possible to accept an answer on an on-hold question. I'm not sure. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jul 17 '18 at 4:26
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Poison immunity seems overpowered.

Immunity to damage types and conditions is a rare trait, usually reserved for high level class features if given at all. It's almost universally not present in racial features, with the exception of the Yuan-ti Pureblood from Volo's Guide to Monsters - however Volo's notes that the monstrous races it presents are not necessarily balanced with normal PC races:

Some of these races are unusual in that they have a reduction to an ability score, and some are more or less powerful than the typical D&D races — additional reasons for the monstrous races to be used in a campaign with care.

And furthermore I believe the general opinion on that race is that it is overpowered due to the combination of that immunity plus the very powerful Magic Resistance trait (citation needed...).

If you toned the immunity to poison and poisoned down to match the Dwarven Resilience trait, the race seems relatively balanced to me. (Immunity to disease is probably fine to keep given how much of an edge case disease is)

Dwarven Resilience. You have advantage on saving throws against poison, and you have resistance against poison damage.

Other concerns

Addressing your other concerns laid out in the comments:

The AC feature doesn't seem overpowered to me. Yes it's "free" heavy armour, but you could say they need to get lots of expensive metal to do it if you are worried about this. Personally I've never found gold concerns to be much of an issue in my games. You're also preventing this player from getting magical armour better than plate - but again you can just rule they could graft (e.g.) a magical suit of plate into themselves given time.

I originally considered the Antimagic Field effect to be an edge case, but given that you've said they will be frequent clearly that's wrong. I would say that whether this is too much of a disadvantage for this player will depend on how these fields will tend to be used. If used offensively (plonk on top of this player), it looks like a punishing and unrewarding mechanic. If used as more of a defense or terrain feature, then it just adds an interesting element to battles - where other characters wouldn't walk straight through a deep pool of water or area of poisonous gas to get to an enemy due to their need to breathe, this character doesn't walk straight through an antimagic field due to their need to have magic.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I think I will change the poison immunity to match the dwarf passive. Thanks :) I like the idea of needing to purchase the raw material to upgrade your base AC to higher levels. Also in regards to the magical armour I was going to have vestiges like they have in Critical Role and his armour was going to be one of them, though it will take a few levels before it start to unlock its power. The Antimagic fields would mostly be defensive or just a section of the battle map. Unless of course when fighting a beholder which case that could be a bit problematic for them. \$\endgroup\$ – Jetpack Jul 16 '18 at 9:31
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    \$\begingroup\$ "[Immunity to poison damage and the poisoned condition is] simply not seen in races" - with one exception: the yuan-ti pureblood from Volo's... which has exactly that, along with advantage on saving throws from spells and other magical effects. Though you're right that it's probably overpowered. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jul 16 '18 at 9:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast I've noted that race as the exception to the rule. \$\endgroup\$ – Vigil Jul 16 '18 at 9:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yuan-ti purebloods are pretty much universally agreed upon to be way too strong. But there's a preface in Volo that already states that the races can be stronger/weaker than default ones, so it's a bad example of a "balanced" race. \$\endgroup\$ – Theik Jul 16 '18 at 9:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Theik thanks for pointing that out, it's a useful preface to cite to support that purebloods are not (necessarily) balanced :) \$\endgroup\$ – Vigil Jul 16 '18 at 10:00
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I like the antimagic stuff it's cool, but it also represents an issue that you need to resolve, you need to decide if the character is a construct or a creature.

If the creature is the armour itself, it is a construct. In which case go all the way and track down or adapt one of the thousand homebrew warforged races.

If it is a creature, for example: an intangible/invisible/bodiless being that animates the armour to gain a physical presence.

I'd say drop the immunities to resistances, make it need to sleep, eat and breathe. Just to stay on par with other players.

Flip the stats Constitution/Strength after all armour is famously for at taking hits rather than dealing them out.

Consider decreasing the speed to 25 it's a suit of walking steel give it some clank.

Maybe modify the way you determine armour class from the lizard folk scales or barbarian unarmoured defence features.

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    \$\begingroup\$ -1 This does not answer the question posed by the OP. From the question and comments, OP is looking to determine whether the race is balanced relative to the other PC races. RPG.SE is not the right place to workshop homebrew material. If you want to do that, the best place would be chat or on another forum. \$\endgroup\$ – A Very Large Bear Jul 16 '18 at 9:12

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