30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

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How many of the new Dark Sun race options do you like?

Aarakocra
1
5%
Dray (Dragonborn) (4e Dark Sun)
1
5%
Eladrin (4e Dark Sun)
0
No votes
Genasi
0
No votes
Half-Giant (Goliath) (2e Dark Sun race altered in 4e Dark Sun)
4
19%
Mul
6
29%
Pterran
2
10%
Thri-kreen
6
29%
Tiefling (4e Dark Sun)
1
5%
 
Total votes : 21

30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:28 pm

It's the Dark Sun 25th Anniversary and The Burnt World of Athas (aka Athas.org) is celbrating with "30 Days of Dark Sun".

Here is what Athas.org is doing for Day 5: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?.

Here are the playable races mentioned on Dark Sun Wiki:
  • Aarakocra
  • Dray (Dragonborn) (4e Dark Sun)
  • Dwarf
  • Eladrin (4e Dark Sun)
  • Elf
  • Genasi
  • Half-Giant (Goliath) (2e Dark Sun race altered in 4e Dark Sun)
  • Half-elf
  • Halfling
  • Human
  • Mul
  • Pterran
  • Thri-kreen
  • Tiefling (4e Dark Sun)

So which of the fourteen races is your favourite? Raddu said he likes muls and I think they are my favourite option too. If there was one Dark Sun race I would want to imort into a Spelljammer game, that would be it.
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby agathokles » Tue Oct 11, 2016 3:41 pm

The Mul! What's almost as good as a Dwarf? A half-Dwarf hybrid :-)

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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Havard » Tue Oct 11, 2016 4:41 pm

I voted the Kreen! :)

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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Zeromaru X » Tue Oct 11, 2016 6:36 pm

I voted for Muls, Kreen (both are DS iconics), and Drai because I like dragons :P
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:49 pm

Do the three additional options (and the one altered option) of 4e Dark Sun make for a different feel? Or have the 4e designers built those races up to such a good standard that they feel like they were always part of Athas?
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Tim Baker » Wed Oct 12, 2016 5:51 am

I never understood why other settings didn't feature a "half-dwarf" race and didn't offer an explanation. I always appreciated their inclusion in Dark Sun.
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby agathokles » Wed Oct 12, 2016 8:49 am

Big Mac wrote:Do the three additional options (and the one altered option) of 4e Dark Sun make for a different feel? Or have the 4e designers built those races up to such a good standard that they feel like they were always part of Athas?


BTW, the Dray originate in 2e (City by the Silt Sea, Cards 2A and 2B). Like the Half-Giant, they are an original Dark Sun race. In 4e, the designers chose to reuse the Goliath and Dragonborn rather than convert the races over from 2e. The differences are significant, in particular for the Half-Giants, which were very large creatures in 2e, but merely normal sized in 4e.

As for the others, they just shoehorned the Eladrin and Tiefling into the setting, but they make little sense (like the Genasi, which are not part of the original set as well), as Athas has normally no contact with other planes, so races with extraplanar origins are pointless (you'll note that Eladrins and Tieflings existed as PC races in AD&D 2e as well, but they were not used in Dark Sun).

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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Zeromaru X » Wed Oct 12, 2016 8:35 pm

Big Mac wrote:Do the three additional options (and the one altered option) of 4e Dark Sun make for a different feel? Or have the 4e designers built those races up to such a good standard that they feel like they were always part of Athas?


From the PoV of someone who started Dark Sun in 4e, and didn't knew about the original version until after that (and only in this forum I have delved into the beauty of the AD&D 2e version), in my early experience in DS, the 4e races did felt like they belonged to the world of Athas. They did not replace anything, did not came from anywhere. They always were there, with story ties to the setting and whatnot. Now, I cannot imagine a Dark Sun without demonic tiefling from the sands or psionic eladrins trying to kill all and any mage because reasons.

And we have to take into account that 4e had its failed attempt to do the same with Forgotten Realms, that even for someone like me, who started D&D late, it felt like shoehorning.

Although I believe that, for someone who started DS in 2e, things may have looked differently.


Tim Baker wrote:I never understood why other settings didn't feature a "half-dwarf" race and didn't offer an explanation. I always appreciated their inclusion in Dark Sun.


Yeah, I feel the same. And not only for D&D, but for every fantasy world that have dwarves and humans, and elves (where are the half-dwarves, half-elves?)
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:27 pm

Zeromaru X wrote:
Tim Baker wrote:I never understood why other settings didn't feature a "half-dwarf" race and didn't offer an explanation. I always appreciated their inclusion in Dark Sun.


Yeah, I feel the same. And not only for D&D, but for every fantasy world that have dwarves and humans, and elves (where are the half-dwarves, half-elves?)


I think that making muls infertile was quite a clever idea. It gave an explanation to why there were so few of them.

I think I've heard half-dwarf/half-elf people referred to as dwelfs in the past. But I'm not sure where the name comes from.

(I wonder if The Book of Erotic Fantasy has a table that shows which D&D races can breed with other races. :? )
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby agathokles » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:33 pm

In Dark Sun, Muls aren't that rare. Actually, in many city-states they are bred on purpose by slave owners.

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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:15 pm

agathokles wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Do the three additional options (and the one altered option) of 4e Dark Sun make for a different feel? Or have the 4e designers built those races up to such a good standard that they feel like they were always part of Athas?


BTW, the Dray originate in 2e (City by the Silt Sea, Cards 2A and 2B). Like the Half-Giant, they are an original Dark Sun race. In 4e, the designers chose to reuse the Goliath and Dragonborn rather than convert the races over from 2e. The differences are significant, in particular for the Half-Giants, which were very large creatures in 2e, but merely normal sized in 4e.


I heard that 4e dropped the Level Adjustment mechanic that 3e had. I wonder if WotC swapped in the Goliath and Dragonborn rather than put in races that would have needed to have had the equivalent of a higher ECL. :?

Has anyone tried to create 4e versions of the Dray and Half-Giant use them alongside the Goliath and Dragonborn?

agathokles wrote:As for the others, they just shoehorned the Eladrin and Tiefling into the setting, but they make little sense (like the Genasi, which are not part of the original set as well), as Athas has normally no contact with other planes, so races with extraplanar origins are pointless (you'll note that Eladrins and Tieflings existed as PC races in AD&D 2e as well, but they were not used in Dark Sun).


I've had people tell me that the 2e concept of an Eldarin is very different from the 4e concept of an Eldarin.

This is clearly a reboot of Dark Sun, but this (and the Goliath/Dragonborn import) is probably a much less radical reboot than what was done with Forgotten Realms.

Has anyone tried to come up with ways to make these 4e changes work with the 2e Dark Sun? Nentir Vale created new back stories for old things. Perhaps these 4e races could be given a new Dark Sun backstory too. The original Dark Sun only covered so much area. Maybe fanon areas off of one of the edges of the map could be the home of some of the 4e races. (After all the halflings come from an area outside of the main area.)

Tieflings are supposed to be linked to fiendish planes. I wonder if Dark Sun's Tieflings could be linked into either defiling or sorcerer kings.

If the magic that was normally used to "help" women give birth to Muls was used with a pure human foetus instead of a dwarf/human mixed foetus, perhaps the magic that normally allows the Mul to live could transform a human baby into a Tiefling. (Or maybe it could be similar but different magic.)

Alternatively, if you had a Sorcerer-King trying to turn into a dragon then perhaps they could start having warped children. (Or perhaps something similar to the process of transforming a person into a dragon could transform unborn babies into Tieflings.)
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:25 pm

Zeromaru X wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Do the three additional options (and the one altered option) of 4e Dark Sun make for a different feel? Or have the 4e designers built those races up to such a good standard that they feel like they were always part of Athas?


From the PoV of someone who started Dark Sun in 4e, and didn't knew about the original version until after that (and only in this forum I have delved into the beauty of the AD&D 2e version), in my early experience in DS, the 4e races did felt like they belonged to the world of Athas. They did not replace anything, did not came from anywhere. They always were there, with story ties to the setting and whatnot. Now, I cannot imagine a Dark Sun without demonic tiefling from the sands or psionic eladrins trying to kill all and any mage because reasons.

And we have to take into account that 4e had its failed attempt to do the same with Forgotten Realms, that even for someone like me, who started D&D late, it felt like shoehorning.

Although I believe that, for someone who started DS in 2e, things may have looked differently.


This is where I think that edition reboots can make things a bit hard for a GM.

If you picked up the 4th Edition Dark Sun products...and really liked them, you should be able to hunt down old 2e Dark Sun products, convert them to 4e and use them to add to your 4e Dark Sun game.

I said over in the What's your favorite game mechanic? topic that psionics had felt a bit like something tacked onto D&D to me...until I saw Dark Sun where it felt like it was properly embedded into the setting. If you started off with 4e Dark Sun and then started to add in 2e adventures (and sourcebooks) you would get a bunch of books that totally failed to support those new 4e elements (in the same way that non-Dark Sun settings failed to support psionics properly).

I suppose this begs the question: "What changes need to be made to 2e Dark Sun products to make them fit 4e Dark Sun?" (Maybe that question needs it's own topic. :) )
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby Big Mac » Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:29 pm

agathokles wrote:In Dark Sun, Muls aren't that rare. Actually, in many city-states they are bred on purpose by slave owners.


True.

But isn't it a hard process where either babies or mothers die in many cases? Wouldn't the natural birthrate be very low (if not non-existent)?

What I was trying to get at was that slave-owners were putting a lot of effort into breeding Muls. An unnatural amount of effort that was well above and beyond the sort of rates of interracial marriages you might expect in a setting where dwarves and humans associated with each other.
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Re: 30 Days of Dark Sun 5: What's your favorite player race?

Postby agathokles » Fri Oct 14, 2016 9:09 am

Mul babies are rather large, but while risky, it is not an automatically deadly matter. One of the female protagonists of the prism pentad had a mul child, e.g.

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