Rakasta

Rakasta

Description

The rakasta are a proud race of feline humanoids. Once nomads, they long ago settled into a more agrarian and urbanised society.

By an unfortunate coincidence, the name "Rakasta" bears similarity to the evil Rakshasa. This, and their superficial resemblance to the cat-demons, has caused no end of confusion, fear and bitterness. However, the Rakasta actually have no relationship with the Rakshasa, and have even grudgingly permitted their neighbouring races to call them "cat people" to avoid unnecessary unpleasantness.

Personality: Rakastas tend to be proud and emotional; in particular they are quick to anger. Rakastas are renowned for demanding duels to settle real or imagined slights (although these need not be "to the death"). All rakastas are convinced of rakastan superiority over other races, even if most are too polite to bring this up in general conversation.

More importantly, rakastas are (almost insanely) curious. Most are extremely interested in the world at large, and regularly go on long journeys to explore and experience all things for themselves. Even the settled town-dwellers amongst them show an intense curiosity about visitors and a penchant for puzzles of any type.

Physical Description: A rakasta looks like a short furry human with the head of a cat. Its short fur is usually soft and ranges in color from light tan to dark brown. Many rakastas have a darker hue on the ears and muzzle. Some specimens have white highlights and the ears and muzzle instead or even white or dark patches at the extremities (feet, hands, and tail). Older rakastas show a whitening around the face and ears.

Rakastas have a build similar to that of humans; hard-working rakastas tend to be slender, while those who live more sedentary lives tend to weigh more, ranging from slightly chubby to downright obese. The creatures have cat eyes, with vertical pupils. The irises are usually green, but some are yellow or even blue or hazel; a few rare individuals have two colors, most commonly one blue and one green.

Rakastan hands and feet are like those of humans, except for the fur and retractable claws. Rakastas also have non-prehensile tails. These are usually between two and four feet long, though an unfortunate few have no tail at all. Likewise, most are covered with short fur, although females amongst some prestigious families have much longer, fluffier fur on their tails. Rakastas are very proud of their tails and spend a great deal of time each day grooming them.

Relations: Rakastas often seem arrogant and defiant while in the presence of the other races. For this reason they are very well respected by isolationist races such as elves and half-orcs, but the more civil and personable races like halflings and humans tend to dislike them.

Alignment: Most rakastas are usually neutral where law and order is concerned, and are indifferent about the affairs of good and evil as well. A rakasta fits equally well into all alignments, favoring Chaos over Law and favoring Neutral over Good and Evil. Truly the most arrogant of races, the rakastas rarely favor anything more or less important than themselves.

Religion: The favored deity among the rakastan people is Fellpurr the Great. Fellpurr is a patron of art, war, and travel.

Language: The main language of the rakasta is Rakastan. In some ways it sounds like the common tongue, but it is different enough that the similarities are more confusing than helpful. However, most rakastas also speak common.

Names: As one halfling saying goes, "Rakastas have names as long as their tail". Even common rakastas often have two or three personal names, whereas for upper-class rakastas naming is an art form. Family names may be just as lengthy, and may or may not include a clan name.

Racial Traits

  • +2 Dexterity, -2 Constitution, +1 Charisma. Rakastas are quick and graceful, but they lack fortitude.
  • Small Size. As a Small creature, a rakasta gains a +1 size bonus to Armor Class, a +1 size bonus on attack rolls, and a +4 size bonus on Hide checks, but uses smaller weapons than humans use, and her lifting and carrying limits are three-quarters of those of a Medium character.
  • Rakastan base speed is 30 feet.
  • Darkvision 60': Rakastas can see in the dark up to 60 feet away. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and rakastas can function just fine with no light at all.
  • +2 racial bonus on Hide, Move Silently, Balance, Tumble, and Spot checks. A rakasta is very light on his feet and graceful.
  • Half damage from falls: Because of their light frame and excellent reflexes, rakastas automatically take half damage from all falls from less than 50 feet.
  • Claws: Rakastas have one-inch long claws on their hands and feet, which they may attack with in melee. Each paw does 1-3 points of damage. A barefoot rakasta who grapples his opponent may rake with his back legs, for 1-3 points of damage per hit.
  • Whiskers: Rakastas have 4 to 8 inch long whiskers on their face, which gives them the Blind Fighting feat for free as long as the whiskers are not cut. Cut whiskers may be healed magically as any wound; otherwise they regrow in 2d4 days.
  • Automatic Languages: Common and Rakastan. Bonus Languages: any except secret languages (like Druidic) and ancient tongues (such as Nithian).
  • Favored Class: Bard. A multiclass rakasta's bard levels do not count when determining whether she suffers an XP penalty.

Abilities

Str Dex Con Int Wis Cha
0 +2 -2 0 0 0

Age

Starting Age Aging Effects
Adulthood Short Medium Long Middle Age Old Venerable Maximum
15 +1d4 +1d6 +2d6 45 60 90 +2d8

Height and Weight

Gender Base Height Height Mod Base Weight Weight Mod
Male 2' 8" +2d4 25 lb x1
Female 2' 6" +2d4 20 lb ×1
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