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Anime Races

Races are archetypes for humanoid and part-humanoid species. The core rules includes standard high-fantasy races such as a elves, dwarves, humans, and halflings, as well as less-common races such as gnomes and dragonborn. The rules here provide an additional 14 races that evoke an intangible anime essence, including demonic archfiends, sylvan fairies, playful nekojin, and slippery slimes.

Races provide a set of Proficiencies and Attributes (and sometimes Defects) that reflect the baseline capabilities for the majority of characters belonging to those races. Since there are a near infinite number of possible fantasy worlds in an anime multiverse, the races outlined herein simply represent a small sampling of concepts that can be used in your adventures. With your GM’s permission, you may design your own race package by combining different characteristics and determining the appropriate Point cost.

Costing Races

When determining the Point cost of a core races’ special abilities and talents, each one was examined closely. If the ability has a reasonable comparison to an Attribute, that value is used For example, a +1 bonus to an Ability costs 1 Point; an advantage on a particular type of Saving Throw (such as poison, charm, or fright) costs 1 Point; darkvision (a Feature Attribute) cost 1 Point; etc. Some Race abilities are not worth any Points, since its utility is worth less than a full Point, such as slightly increased or decreased speeds, or an Elf ’s sleepless trance. Movement speed of 30 feet (+/- 5 feet), being Medium-sized, and speaking one language costs 0 Points.

Race Sizes Other than Medium

One of the significant differences between the rules here and the standard 5e rules involves the benefits/drawbacks and costs of a Race that’s bigger or smaller than Medium. None of the nine Races in the core rules are larger than Medium, but two are Small: Halflings and Gnomes. Being Small has net unfavorable modifiers that return 5 Points to the character, and this hindrance is reflected in the -5 Point allocation to both Halflings and Gnomes. Note that speed for Small Races is one-half the normal 30’ speed of Medium-sized Races and consequently those two Races each have a 15’ speed instead of the 25’ speed presented in the core rules.

Race and Discretionary Points

The cost for each Race is paid from the character’s pool of Discretionary Points that remain after assigning Ability Scores. If a character has insufficient Discretionary Points left to pay for their selected Race, you can either choose a different Race with a lower Point cost, or you can burden the character with one or more Defects.

Raceless Characters

Every character is part of a Race, even if it’s simply Human. A player can forego the selection of a Race, though, and avoid any associated Race cost. They still may be Human or Fairy or Slime, but considered “Raceless” when allocating Points to Race.

Building A Raceless Character

Selecting a pre-existing Race is a simple way to get started with species-specific abilities, but sometimes the package of Race features doesn’t match with the vision for your character. For example, instead of a standard Nekojin build, you may envision an aquatic version that possesses numerous water-related features. Alternatively, you may plan to play a Human, but want to save your Discretionary Points to acquire 7 Points in Attributes rather than allocate them to the Human’s six +1 Ability Score bonuses and one choice of language.

In these instances, you can either craft a new set of features and assign them to a Race template of your own design (with GM input), or designate your character as “Raceless”. Of course, Raceless characters still identify with a Race (even if it’s unique), but that identity is not associated with a specific set of Attributes acquired with Points. Instead, raceless characters skip this section and save their Discretionary Points to spend on Attributes they desire.

Companions and monsters are Raceless creations.

Table 03: Race Cost Summary
Anime 5E Race Points Core Race Points
Archfiend 15 Dragonborn 9
Asrai 11 Dwarf – Hill 12
Blinkbeast 10 Dwarf – Mountain 14
Demonaga 14 Elf – Dark 13
Fairy 4 Elf – High 12
Gray 12 Elf – Wood 11
Half-Dragon 13 Gnome – Forest 4
Half-troll 9 Gnome – Rock 4
Haud 12 Half-Elf 10
Kodama 10 Half-Orc 8
Nekojin 8 Halfling – Lightfoot 3
Parasite 16 Halfling – Stout 5
Satyr 7 Human 7
Slime 11 Tiefling 12
Table 04: Race Cost Breakdown
Points Race Features
+2 Dwarf Constitution +2
0 Dwarf Speed: 25’
+1 Dwarf Darkvision 60’
+1 Dwarf Advantage on Save vs. poison
+2 Dwarf Resistance against poison
+1 Dwarf Weapon proficiency: 2 martial
+1 Dwarf Tool proficiency: one artisan
+1 Dwarf Stonecunning
+1 Dwarf Languages: Common + Dwarvish
+1 Hill Dwarf Wisdom +1
+1 Hill Dwarf +1 Hit Point/Level
+2 Mountain Dwarf Strength +2
+2 Mountain Dwarf Armor proficiency: light + medium
+2 Elf Dexterity +2
0 Elf Speed: 30’
+1 Elf Darkvision 60’
+1 Elf Skill Proficiency: perception
+1 Elf Advantage on Save vs. charm
+1 Elf Resilient to sleep
0 Elf Trance
+1 Elf Languages: Common + Elvish
+1 High Elf Intelligence +1
+2 High Elf Weapon proficiency: 3 martial
+1 High Elf 1 cantrip
+1 High Elf Languages: one choice
+1 Wood Elf Wisdom +1
+2 Wood Elf Weapon proficiency: 3 martial
0 Wood Elf Speed: 35’
+1 Wood Elf Mask of the Wild
+1 Dark Elf Charisma +1
+1 Dark Elf Superior darkvision 120’
-2 Dark Elf Disadvantages in sunlight
+4 Dark Elf Drow magic (cantrip + spells)
+2 Dark Elf Weapon proficiency: 3 martial
-5 Halfling Small Size
+2 Halfling Dexterity +2
Halfling Speed: 15’
+1 Halfling Lucky
+1 Halfling Advantage on Save vs. fright
+1 Halfling Nimbleness
+1 Halfling Languages: Common + Halfling
+1 Lightfoot Halfling Charisma +1
+1 Lightfoot Halfling Stealthy
+1 Stout Halfling Constitution +1
+1 Stout Halfling Advantage on Save vs. poison
+2 Stout Halfling Resistance against poison
+6 Human +1 to each Ability Score
0 Human Speed: 30’
+1 Human Languages: Common + one choice
+2 Dragonborn Strength +2
+1 Dragonborn Charisma +1
0 Dragonborn Speed: 30’
+2 Dragonborn Breath weapon
+3 Dragonborn Resistance against breath weapon
+1 Dragonborn Languages: Common + Draconic
-5 Gnome Small Size
+2 Gnome Intelligence +2
Gnome Speed: 15’
+1 Gnome Darkvision 60’
+2 Gnome Advantage on Save vs. some magic
+1 Gnome Languages: Common + Gnomish
+1 Forest Gnome Dexterity +1
+1 Forest Gnome Minor illusion cantrip
+1 Forest Gnome Languages: small beasts
+1 Rock Gnome Constitution +1
+1 Rock Gnome Artificer’s lore
+1 Rock Gnome Tool proficiency: tinker’s tools
+2 Half-Elf Charisma +2
+2 Half-Elf 2 Abilities +1 each
0 Half-Elf Speed: 30’
+1 Half-Elf Darkvision 60’
+1 Half-Elf Advantage on Save vs. charm
+1 Half-Elf Resilient to sleep
+2 Half-Elf Skill Proficiency: 2 of choice
+1 Half-Elf Languages: Common + Elvish
+2 Half-Orc Strength +2
+1 Half-Orc Constitution +1
0 Half-Orc Speed: 30’
+1 Half-Orc Darkvision 60’
+1 Half-Orc Skill Proficiency: Intimidation
+1 Half-Orc Relentless endurance
+1 Half-Orc Savage attacks
+1 Half-Orc Languages: Common + Orc
+1 Tiefling Intelligence +1
+2 Tiefling Charisma +2
0 Tiefling Speed: 30’
+1 Tiefling Darkvision 60’
+3 Tiefling Resistance against fire
+4 Tiefling Infernal Legacy (cantrip + spells)
+1 Tiefling Languages: Common + Infernal

Some race and class combinations may exceed the benchmark maximums listed in Table 01, especially when creating low-Level characters. GMs are encouraged to allow such exceptions when appropriate for the gaming group.

Note that the Point assignments in Table 04 consider both the base feature plus additional advantages that accumulate at higher character Levels. For example, the 4-Point Tiefling Infernal Legacy feature includes the cantrip known at 1st Level, plus the additional spells gained at 3rd and 5th Levels.

Section 15: Copyright Notice
Anime 5E: Big Eyes, Small Mouth d20 Fantasy Role-Playing Copyright 2021, Dyskami Publishing Company. Author Mark MacKinnon