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It's basically a spore-infested nature-related horrific kind of being, a regular individual of pretty much any race that got infested and biologically changed, linking themselves with nature in the process (unwillingly), while also altering their perception because of being able to feel around their spores.

(Sorry for the terrible English; I had to translate this whole thing.)

Sporeborn

Age. After being infested, they tend live for up to 40 more years, though that varies based on the original host.

Height. Depends on the original being.

Attributes. +1 to Con and +2 to Wis.

Alignment. Because of their state, and after being rejected by the rest of society, sporeborn will keep to themselves and either attempt, aimlessly, to find a cure for their condition, or wreak havoc amongst the mortal races in anger for their hopelessness, although some may find peace in their contact with nature.

Speed. 30 feet.

Languages. Common and one belonging to their original self.

Fey. You are considered a fey, and gain proficiency in Nature.

Blend In. Sporeborn have advantage in Stealth checks while out in dense forests.

Photosynthesis. You gain an additional hit dice to invest while having a short rest if you're receiving direct sunlight during it. This hit dice will be invested before your other ones. This ability works only once per long rest.

Spore Cloud. After being reduced to 0 hit points, a sporeborn will release a dense cloud of spores in a 20-ft. radius, passing through penetrable obstacles, poisoning all creatures in its reach in a failed Con save. Uses Wis.

Natural. Sporeborn can cast the spell speak with plants once per short rest. After level 10, they can use this ability freely, without delay.

Regurgitate. You can expel spores through your mouth, hitting up to two other creatures in a 15-ft. radius around you, poisoning them on a failed Con save for a turn. Alternatively, you may focus on your spores on one creature, making them gag for a turn on a failed Dex save, causing the same effects as silence for its duration. This ability may be silenced. You use Wis for this ability. Recharges upon short rest.

Flammable. You are vulnerable to fire.

Monstrous. You are considered a terrible, detestable being by common folk, and must cover your body and smell to evade conflicts.

I'm new to this, and I don't really know what to do. Also, yeah, they are fey, but for reasons related to my campaign's lore.

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  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ 1. Welcome aboard! Glad to have you here. Make sure you check out our tour and feel free to visit Role-playing Games Chat after you get enough rep. \$\endgroup\$
    – goodguy5
    Oct 2, 2023 at 18:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ 2. Is Spore Cloud saying that the DC is 8 + proficiency + Wisdom? \$\endgroup\$
    – goodguy5
    Oct 2, 2023 at 18:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ "Poisoned" As in the original condition, yes, which makes a creature have disadvantage on attack rolls and hability checks. They are not immune to poison, altough, as their body is only resistant to its own spores, not to outside toxins. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 18:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ they'd be immune as well, indeed \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 18:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm a DM creating content for a campaign. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 20:29

1 Answer 1

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The biggest problem is that this is near unplayable in a group

Player races are meant to be played as player characters, and in D&D 5e, the assumption is that you adventure in a group of such characters. Drop

Alignment. Because of their state, and after being rejected by the rest of society, sporeborn will keep to themselves and either attempt, aimlessly, to find a cure for their condition, or wreak havoc amongst the mortal races in anger for their hopelessness, although some may find peace in their contact with nature.

This is entirely antisocial, and a non-starter for a game that assumes the character will be part of a mixed group. At least, unless all of them are sporeborn, and that is an unpractical assumption to make for a game where each player typically decides what character they want to play. Just drop this.

Monstrous. You are considered a terrible, detestable being by common folk, and must cover your body and smell to evade conflicts.

This likewise makes the race very hard to play in any normal campaign, where common folk are the backdrop of play, when you visit villages, towns and cities. Drow characters have had issus with this in past editions (when practially all drow were irrevocably evil). There are no straightforward ways to cover "smell", and the race has no feature to disguise itself. I'd remove the smell aspect, at least.

Power assessment

I will also take a look at the power level, and make some suggestions, using detect balance to try and get that race to a level that is in line with other races. One common trap that you fell into is making maybe too many special features, compared to typcial published races.

You should sum up to 25 points or so, and you already have 12 from the ability score increases. Height, age, speed and languages are standard and add or subtract nothing.

Fey: Clarify the language to "Intelligence (Nature)", if that is what you mean. Non-humanoid is +2, a skill is +2, total +4.

Blend In. Stealth is one of the most often used skills (based on statisitics the Critical Role team made), only a little behind the #1 skill perception, but here is limited to only within dense forests. Advantage on a situational roll is worth +2.

Flammable: drop this. Vulnerabilty is extremely hard to balance, because it just can spell death when being hit by a fireball or something like that, which normally would not be so deadly. Instead of using vulnerabilty to balance overtly strong other features, mellow down those other features. It would give you -20 points more to play with, but it really is a bad idea.

Spore Cloud: This needs to specify a DC, use language copying the published features, to be clear. You confirm in a comment the DC is 8 + Proficiency + Wisdom Ability Bonus, this should be in the text. It also should state that this causes the poisoned condition (again, clarified in comments), as there are many other kinds of poisons. The ability will also affect the rest of the characters, so has quite some risk to contribute to a TPK, as it might poison the whole team at a time when you already are down. It also does not state a duration. You could at least limit it to 1 round, to make it more bearable. This one is hard to score as it is as much a liabiltiy as a power, probably more so, unless the whole team is immune to poison (like with heroes feast). I'll put it at +0, and would recommend to cut this feature. You already get to spew spores with the Regurgitate one, so it is really a bit superfluous.

Immunity to poison: You added in comments the race also would be immune to poison, but this is not in the race description. Even simple resistance to poison is already +4 points, so immunity would be more than +8, but none of the published races has an immunity. You do not need this, so I would leave it off. If you use it, make it resistance at best. I'll assume you leave it off, for +0.

Photosynthesis: There is no limit on the hit dice you can take in a short rest. If what you mean is that you get one extra hit die to spend, in addition to your other hit dice, in most cases this is depending on your hit die and Con bonus worth between +d6-1 hp or +d12+5 hp. The average is likely somewhere around d8 or d10 + 2 or 3 hp, similar to a cure wounds, with the downside it only works during a rest, and worth about +3 points.

Natural: looks OK, it's a lot of free spells per day, and this is a level 3 spell. I would probably drop the level 10 rider, and limit this to once per long rest, starting at 5th level, which is +3 points.

Regurgitate. Assuming this uses the same DC as above. This also needs to specify the action cost -- I will assume this takes a full action. I think for consistency, you should really limit this to only the Constitution save, not an option of a Dexterity save instead. This is very strong, as it effectively the ability to give Disadvantge to 2 opponents nearly every fight. (There are typically 3-4 fights per day, so you can take a short rest in most cases in between). The only saving grace is that a lot of monsters have advantage against poison, or are outright immune to it. I think the ability to silence one creature may be too strong, it can entirely invalidate a spellcaster for a turn, and most fights are just 3 or so turns. I'd probably tone this down and reduce the range to 5 or 10 feet so you need to at least get close to that spellcaster, and they often seek protection behind some meatshields. I'd suggest to drop the part of silence affecting this, first spewing spores is not making noise, so silence should not affect it, second, it is very rare that PCs get silenced, so it is just rules overhead that needs to be remembered for little play time. A comparator is ray of sickness, which also causes the poisoned condition on a failed save for 1 turn, has a range of 60 and is a first level spell that costs an action (it also requires you to hit first). So this is worth at least 3-4 times the 3 points a first level spell costs, and this is arguably twice as strong with hitting 2 targets and not needing a to-hit roll, and being able to silence spellcasters, so it probably should be at least level 2. This would be worth far more than 12 points.

At this point, you are already at 12 + 4 + 2 + 3 + 3 = 24 points, so you only really can afford 1 more. Make this a daily power, maybe comparable to a level 2 spell available from 3rd level, which would be 3 points, getting you to 27. That is already on the higher side, and if we misevaluate something, we might be over the top, so you could consider to drop something, either Blend In, or maybe Intelligence (Nature) or another of the +2 or +3 features, depending on what is most important to you.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ You forgot to comment about "blend in" which i would guess is quite a great situational advantage? Being so situational, and considering that my campaigns have many different biomes, i suppose it's worth keeping. Sounds like fun roleplay, too. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 20:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah sorry, yes I missed that one ... so many features. I will add it in. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 2, 2023 at 20:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ Alright, much appreciated! Thank you for the help, it really opened my eyes. The end race now has regurgitate (only one target, poisoned for a turn), blend in (useful and ocasionally funny), photosynteshis (ocasionally helpful, basically works like a daily cure wounds on self), and natural (speak with plants, once per long rest). Dropped the fey, as they're technically not it, and the proficiency, as technically they didn't gain any knowledge by turning into a tree monster. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 20:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ Dropped spore cloud, too. And the weakness, and the "monstrous" thing. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 2, 2023 at 20:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ That's true falsedot. And besides, i have a group of friends i always play with, so there's not a whole lot of chance that someone will isolate themselves just because of the race description. As the race was never meant to be "published" for other people to use, i ended up not even considering the induced level of edginess. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ferfolho
    Oct 3, 2023 at 18:10

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