An ancient race of miners and craftsmen. They are shorter than humans but make up for it in girth. They are hardy and sturdy warriors (and drinking companions). Though they may seem a bit gloomy and gruff to the other races, they tend to be stubbornly loyal to those that earn their friendship. They can be rigid in their traditionalism, but they are good natured and courageous in the face of evil. They view arcane magic with distrust.
According to Dwarven tradition, all dwarves are descended from the legendary kingdom of Nemoram. Their mines were vast and their smiths and craftsmen grew haughty in their talent. They constructed a monumental device to drill down to the very mines of Turim himself. This had been forbidden by the teachings of Turim. The Dwarven God learned of this and caused a great evil to emerge up into Nemoram which destroyed their entire kingdom. Several groups escaped, and these split off into what would become the separate dwarven races existing today.
The most commonly encountered subrace of dwarves (as listed in Player’s Handbook).
Over the centuries, many mountain dwarves have come to the surface to live their lives. Some by choice, some by a sentence of exile. These dwarves have gathered in many small communities and holds in the hills and mountain foothills of many lands. They often serve as a vital middleman facilitating trade between the Mountain Dwarves and the surface races. They have come to be less dour and standoffish than the other dwarven races. Many choose to live in human communities where their crafting and smithing skills are welcomed.
They have tan skin, ruddy cheeks, and bright eyes. Their hair is brown, black, or grey, worn in respectable trim around the ears but long and bushy in beards and moustaches. Their clothes reflect the drab colours of their lands: black, brown, grey, tan, and beige. On rare occasions (when feeling festive or scandalous), a hill dwarf might don a scarf of bright red or green.
•+ 2 Constitution, – 2 Charisma.
•A dwarf’s base land speed is 20 feet. However, dwarves can
move at this speed even when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.
•Darkvision out to to 60 feet.
•Stonecunning: This ability grants a dwarf a + 2 racial bonus on Search checks to notice unusual stonework, such as sliding walls, stonework traps, new construction (even when built to match the old), unsafe stone surfaces, shaky stone ceilings, and the like. Something that isn’t stone but that is disguised as stone also counts as unusual stonework. A dwarf who merely comes within 10 feet of unusual stonework can make a Search check as if he were actively searching, and a dwarf can use the Search skill to find stonework traps as a rogue can. A dwarf can also intuit depth, sensing his approximate depth underground as naturally as a human can sense which way is up. Dwarves have a sixth sense about stonework, an innate ability that they get plenty of opportunity to practice and hone in their underground homes.
• Weapon Familiarity: Dwarves treat dwarven waraxes and dwarven urgroshes (see Chapter 7 of the Player’s Handbook) as martial weapons, rather than exotic weapons.
The mountain dwarves are descendants of Nemoram who fled upwards from the disaster, then migrated northward. They dwelt closer to the surface than their ancestors. They are more traditional and isolationist than their cousins the hill dwarves and gold dwarves, but far less so than the reclusive deep dwarves. In the Age of Dreams, there were great mountain kingdoms. Since then, these have split off into the smaller kingdoms, cities, and holds which exist today.
Regions: Two kingdoms exist in the west, each descended from opposing sides of a civil war that tore apart the ancient kingdom of Dindural. The kingdom of Dorneldur is the largest center of mountain dwarf civilization in Avralor. Ruled by a council of thanes, they are the ancestors of the dwarves of Dindural who believed that it was Turim’s will that the high throne sit empty until the hammer of Bhalthron is returned. Far to the north, beyond the mountains of Khul, lies the mountain dwarf kingdom of Tharedur. These descendants of Dorneldur believe that the original teachings of Turim take precedence over the loss of the hammer and that a new king eventually had to be chosen. Across the northern continent to the west is the kingdom of Bhar Molduhr. Bhar Moldur is the oldest existing kingdom of mountain dwarves. Though sources disagree on the exact age of this kingdom, it is known that by the time the Hammer of Bhalthron was lost, the first kings of Bhar Molduhr had already had their reign. The dwarves of Bhar Molduhr are still ruled by a high king of ancient lineage. Their belief system places greater importance on venerating ancestors than their cousins to the east.
Besides the three main kingdoms, various independent fortresses, mines, and cities can be found beneath many of the mountain ranges on the northern continent.
As Hill Dwarves and Player’s Handbook.
The gold dwarves inhabit the southern continent. Their origins are unclear. Some say that they are unrelated to the mountain dwarves of the north. They maintain this view calling themselves the final race of dwarves created by Turim after learning from the flaws in the earlier races. Others say that they are the survivors of Nemoram who fled to the surface then migrated south.
Their grand kingdom of Khaldarum hasn’t suffered from the same divisive wars as the northern kingdoms. It is more isolated geographically from the other surface races. As a result, Khaldarum is grander and larger in scale. They are more infertile than the other dwarves however, and their population has been slowly declining over the centuries. They are a proud race who feel that they are favored by Turim. They feel that their numbers are dwindling because the world itself is in decline. They believe they will soon take their place at Turim’s right hand. It is this pride, according to the mountain dwarves, that has led to their curse of infertility.
Gold dwarves are less reclusive than the mountain dwarves and their outposts trade freely with the surface races. They are less distrustful of magic, though they don’t practice it themselves.
The Gold Dwarves ancestral home is Khaldarum, located south of Anochia and north of the kingdoms of the Enu. They have outposts in each of these lands and in Suderia.
Their entry in Character Region describes characters raised in Khaldarum.
• + 2 Constitution, –2 Dexterity: Gold dwarves are stout and tough, but not as quick or agile as other races.
• + 1 racial bonus on attack rolls against aberrations: Gold dwarves are trained in special combat techniques against the many bizarre creatures that live in the Underdark. (This replaces the attack bonus against orcs and goblinoids.)
• Automatic Languages: Dwarven, Common, home region. Bonus
Languages: Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Anochian, Terran, Enu, Suderian.
Once known as clan Duergar. These survivors of Nemoram remained deep below the surface. They are blamed by the other races of dwarves for the disaster that destroyed Nemoram. They are a twisted, evil race of dark magic and dark gods. Most duergar are bald (even the females), and they dress in drab clothing that is designed to blend into stone. In their lairs they may wear jewelry, but it is always kept dull. They war with other dwarves, even allying with other underground creatures from time to
time. The duergar revere a
joyless god who demands constant toil.
Duergar speak Dwarven and Undercommon.
Underdark. They are rarely encountered on the surface.
These traits are in
addition to the hill dwarf traits, except where
• – 4 Charisma instead of – 2.
•Darkvision out to 120 feet.
•Immunity to paralysis, phantasms, and poison. This trait replaces the hill dwarf ’s + 2 racial bonus on saving throws against poison.
• + 2 racial bonus on saves against spells and spell-like abilities.
•Spell-Like Abilities: 1/day—enlarge person and invisibility as a wizard of twice the duergar’s class level (minimum caster level 3rd); these abilities affect only the duergar and whatever it carries.
•Light Sensitivity: Duergar are dazzled in bright sunlight or
within the radius of a daylight spell.
•+ 4 racial bonus on Move Silently checks.
• + 1 racial bonus on Listen and Spot checks.
•Automatic Languages: Common, Dwarven, Undercommon.
Bonus Languages: Draconic, Giant, Goblin, Orc, Terran. This trait replaces the hill dwarf ’s automatic and bonus languages.
•Favored Class: Fighter.
•Level adjustment + 1
•Unlike other dwarves, duergar do not have weapon familiar-
ity with the dwarven waraxe and dwarven urgrosh.
According to accounts of the mountain dwarves and gold dwarves, deep dwarves are a very ancient race of dwarves who dwelt further below the surface in the mines of Turim. They are believed to be the Dwarven god’s first created race. It is likely that they were more than pure legend. It is unclear whether or not they were the ancestors of the other dwarven races. It is also unknown what their fate was or if they are completely extinct. They were said to have possessed a longer lifespan than modern dwarves.
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