Dwarves are a short and sturdy race averaging about 4’ tall, with their tallest folk close to 4’ 8” tall, with thick arms and legs. They are stocky in build, with broad, strong shoulders.
Generally they have fair to ruddy tan skin. Some have brown or even grey skin. They tend to have dark hair, brown eyes and are proud of their long and thick beards.
Male dwarves grow thick facial hair, although those in mourning will sometimes shave their beards completely.
Traditionally Dwarves are found in hilly or mountainous regions in great underground complexes carved out by themselves. They tend to be fond of architecture and knowledgeable about things found below ground such as rocks, minerals and gems.
Besides the ‘common’ dwarf there are two other sub-race types; Frost Dwarves and Sun Dwarves.
Dwarves are generally accepting of the other races with the exception of the elves (where truth be told, fail to fully appreciate). They mistrust half-orcs immensely, and generally only ally with elves in their many battles against orcs, goblins, gnolls, bugbears and trolls.
Race Overview #
- Dwarves receive a +1 bonus to the Strength Ability stat.
- Dwarves’ terrain of choice is Mountains.
- Base Movement Rate: 45
- Base Encumbrance: 12
- Starting Age: 30-200 Years
- Height: 3′ 10″ to 4′ 8″
- Weight: 120 lbs to 225 lbs
Player characters who pick to play a dwarf is considered a ‘common’ dwarf. There are three sub-races:
- Common [all PCs are of this sub-race]
- Frost Dwarves
- Sun Dwarves
Common dwarves are the original dwarven race. The Iron Mountains of Caledon are their ancestral home. Recognizing a need to acquire the stone and base metals necessary for a fledgling civilization to rise and prosper, Icesi created the common dwarves to mine the deep, hidden riches of Arcadia and ensure a never-ending supply of building materials and potential wealth. While common dwarves are ubiquitous throughout Arcadia, they dominate the territories of Maradan, Avon and Thrine.
Relative newcomers to Arcadia, frost dwarves are especially adapted to cold and snow, and therefore prefer the northern reaches of Arcadia (much of Thrine and especially locales within the white region of Magellan). Indeed, frost dwarves refuse to dig too deeply into their mountainous or hilly locations, as they can’t stand the heat normally associated with deep dwarven mines. The cold seems to have had a chilling effect on the hearts of the frost dwarves as well as their skins, as most seem perpetually angry and some are even combative when encountered. Legend suggests that the very first frost dwarf sold his soul to a demon of Ilkor, and that all his descendents have been born cold and heartless ever since.
While the original dwarves of the Iron Mountains were peaceful and content, there were a few who were more spirited in nature and longed for something more. Eventually, these overly-ambitious dwarves banded together to challenge their leadership, and were promptly cast out into the wild to make their own fame and fortune. After thousands of years of nomadic wandering (and tremendous relative exposure to the outside elements), these “sun” dwarves permanently settled within the Iron Hills of Avon, where they today welcome all restless dwarves looking for a new start. Sun dwarves are certainly more knowledgeable of Arcadia than their common brethren, but are not as adept in mining and are not nearly as self-disciplined.
The ancestry bloodlines of dwarves are known as Clans.
There are 5 different clans throughout the lands of Arcadia:
- Clan Oakenshield
- Clan Eaglecleft
- Clan Darkfell
- Clan Bucklebar
- Clan Quarrymaster
One of the oldest dwarven bloodlines, clan Oakenshield can trace its roots back even before the rise of Ilkor, when the races were still immortal and Icesi was worshipped by all. The clan is as conservative as it is ancient, and will always place protocol and tradition above discovery and change. Mainly due to its long history and influence throughout Caledon, Clan Oakenshield is relatively wealthy and politically powerful, although that strength has waned somewhat since the fall of Ilkor and the rebuilding of Arcadia over the past five centuries. All members of Clan Oakenshield must swear allegiance to the dwarven king Vonar.
Based primarily within the Iron Hills of Avon, Clan Eaglecleft is perhaps the most open-minded and free-thinking of the dwarven bloodlines, as their collective experience has taken them all over Caledon and they don’t see ancient tradition as being all-important. Members of Clan Eaglecleft see themselves as survivors, willing and able to adapt to circumstances without taking advantage of others. Dwarves born into Clan Eaglecleft take an oath upon becoming an adult to faithfully serve and protect the settlement of Avonville.en-minded and free-thinking of the dwarven bloodlines, and they don’t see ancient tradition as being all-important. They are survivors, willing and able to adapt to circumstances. Dwarves born into Clan Eaglecleft take an oath upon becoming an adult to faithfully serve and protect the settlement of Avonville.
While most dwarves are honest and hard-working, a variety of clans over the centuries have chosen a darker path, unafraid to cross the boundary between honor and dishonor in order to achieve their goals and desires. One of the more infamous of these is Clan Darkfell, which sided with Ilkor during the Age of Unrest and was eventually defeated but not destroyed. Indeed, Clan Darkfell has been steadily growing in power over the past few centuries and today is well known as an agent of chaos and deception. Members of Clan Darkfell are said to have inherited a limited form of telepathy amongst themselves.
Long before the rise and fall of Ilkor, a dwarven hero by the name of Hegnar was said to have performed an act of bravery so tremendous that Icesi himself rewarded his clan with a physical token of appreciation, and the clan thrived for centuries thereafter. The token was lost, however, during the Age of Unrest, and ever since Clan Bucklebar has been searching for it, believing that its return would elevate the dwarven clan above all others (dwarven and non-dwarven). Accordingly, all Clan Bucklebar members are born and raised with a heightened sense of awareness, able to spot and identify what others would normally miss.
While all dwarves appreciate the gems and precious metals derived from the bowels of Arcadia, Clan Quarrymaster is almost insanely possessed with the urge to own and control these minerals, setting them apart from all other dwarven clans. While most Clan Quarrymaster members spend their entire lives mining for such resources, others turn to theft, espionage and even murder to obtain the finest in gems and jewelry, and will stop at nothing to satisfy their ravenous lust for such treasures. Perhaps due to their infatuation with gold and precious jewels, Clan Quarrymaster members are said to have the ability to reasonably estimate the worth of a treasure merely by tasting it.
Naming Conventions #
Dwarf names consist of a firstname and the name of their father (if male) or the name of their mother (if female).
Dwarves are a generally confident race who are immensely proud of their ancestry.
Dwarf names are given to them by the clan’s elders. This name has been reused over the generations, and likely comes from a place of legend. A dwarf that humiliates their clan loses the chance to use any dwarven names.
Shown below are the various structures to a dwarven name:
- Short Name: Dain
- Long Name: Dain, son of Thoradin
- Full Name: Dain, son of Thoradin of the Oakenshield Clan
Example Names #
|Male Names||Female Names|
The Symbol used by dwarves. Many display such symbols on flags, banners, clothing and settlements. It’s also common to even include it in there body tattoos.