Monday, November 25, 2019
I bought Mausritter this week and loved it. Having grown up on the Redwall books, I immediately thought I wanted hedgehogs, lemmings, moles, and other rodent-adjacent species in my world.
Some first thoughts:
Each of these species is closely related enough to mice to speak with other characters, but may be difficult to understand. Think about your character's backstory-- how did they come to travel with mice?
I might consider using these like the "rare" classes in Whitehack. If a player's character dies, allow them to create a new character using one of these species if they wish.
I tried to give each species a disadvantage and at least one advantage or special ability. I aimed for flavorful choices rather than simple "hedgehogs are wizards" bonuses. These may not be mechanically balanced, let me know if you try any of them!
Moles spend their lives almost entirely underground in their tunnels. Not exactly antisocial, the saying goes that in a room with three moles there will be two opinions on proper tunnel layout, and four on the best recipe for preserved earthworm. Generally solitary between festival days, moles are deeply in tune with the biome and chemistry of the soil and fill their larders with deliciously fermented grubs and beetles.
They have weak vision. Roll all combat damage as if impaired (1d4 damage).
Moles have dirtsense. They never get lost underground, and automatically detect secret doors in burrows. They always know which way the exit is.
Moles can easily dig in soil. They aren't restricted to already existing tunnels, and can dig far faster with their powerful front claws than a mouse can with a shovel-- about half their walk speed. This is tiring and tunnels can only go a short distance before you must rest: think tunneling a shortcut in a burrow maze, not tunneling across a map hex. Your GM will let you know if you can dig, and where you come out!
Jumping off cliffs is a myth, but it's a fact that Lemmings live without fear. They reproduce exceedingly rapidly, and the young ones must quickly leave home to make their way in the world. They have a strong sense of honor: countless lemmings are lost to blood feuds or hopeless quests. Many a cat’s lair is littered with the curved blades of lost lemming adventurers.
Lemmings are fearless. Shrugging off adversity, they get advantage on HP rolls. Each time you level up, roll one extra die and drop the lowest (not cumulative. For example: at level 3, roll 4 dice and drop the lowest).
Lemmings love adventure and inspire others. Roll with advantage when forming a war band or determining "number appearing" for hirelings.
Hedgehogs are inveterate wanderers, trundling across creation seeking out fortune, knowledge, and the freshest ingredients for their stews. Affable by nature, a hedgehog is more likely to ask after the nearest acorn tree or your apple pie recipe than pick a fight.
Hedgehogs are covered in sharp spines, granting them natural armor. They have natural defense of 1 as if wearing light armor, but cannot wear anything more as it wouldn't fit over their spines. If they forego their action in combat to roll into a ball, they are entirely protected from physical attacks (within reason... your spines won't save you from falling off a cliff or being crushed in a rock fall).
Hedgehogs are well traveled. When exploring a map hex, roll d6: on a 6 ̧ you've been here before. The GM will tell you what you know about the area-- for example, you may know a safe path past the owl’s nest, the name of the mouse family who live in the oak tree, or where the squirrels bury their nuts.