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Bastards and Bloodlines: Variant Inheritance Rules for 5E. Pt 2- In the Blood

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I was raised by humble Fraisian farmers, something I don't think I could ever change if I had the chance to relive my life. My twin sister and I were found on the porch of a barren couple who took us in and raised us as their own. As if a gift from the gods, they were blessed with a son of their own two years later, my younger brother, though they never had any other children. I never knew my own parentage. Part of me thinks that's for the best. But I can tell, and everyone else can as well- even if they don't say so. These ears, these eyes... whomever gave them to me was not from around here.


I was a heavy child, and I ate too much, so I worked as hard as I could to make up for it, a fact that didn't help my eating problem. However, as I grew older and did more farm work, my physique became more athletic. I became tremendously tall and too strong for a girl my age, able to cut down trees with ease. My parents were elated, my brother and sister impressed. Secretly, I was horrified, and almost expected that I would turn into some sort of beast, having replaced too weak with too strong. When two paladins showed up and asked for me, I thought they considered me a monster and prepared for the worst.


It turns out that they had noticed my power, what I called I called my 'freak strength', and suggested I put it to good use as a paladin. I agreed, and thought if I could just beat enough villains over the head, I could make up for everything I believed I owed my parents. I soon learned there was more to it than that. Eventually, I came to terms with myself, my family, and my duty, but even now, I wonder where my blood came from.

Even mighty adventurers have children (in some cases without their knowledge). Sometimes they leave their sons and daughters with a trusted family member, sometimes they retire from adventuring for the sake of their children, sometimes they are taken before their time and their children are left orphaned.

Children almost always inherit traits from their parents, whether they are based in personality or power. It often forms an important development in a character's career when they awaken to some sort of power or aptitude handed down from their ancestors, whether it be superior strength, the gift of gab, or magical power.

Inheritance Traits:
Players seeing new opportunities to express their character's lineage in a mechanical way can choose from the following traits to aid them.

Force of Will:
The will to live and survive burns bright, against all odds. If you fail a saving throw, you can treat the d20 roll as if it were a twenty. You must finish a long Rest before using this feature again.

Warrior's Aptitude:
You are born to the arts of battle. When you gain a Fighting Style (as in the feature from the Fighter, Paladin, and Ranger classes), you can choose an additional option.

Magical Specialization:
Your bloodline is attuned to a particular type of magic. Pick a spell school. The DC for spell effects and bonus to spell attack rolls made with spells from that school is increased by 1.

Snake's Tongue:
You are unusually skilled in the art of getting people to see things your way. When you make a Deception or Persuasion check, you can choose to gain a +5 bonus to the check. You must finish a short or long rest before using this feature again.

Thorned Rose:
Your beauty hides power. Once per turn, when you deal damage with a weapon attack, you can deal an additional amount of damage equal to your Charisma modifier (min 1). You can use this feature up to three times, and regain all uses after completing a Long Rest.

Juggernaut:
You shrug off blows that would kill others. As a reaction, you can halve all damage you receive until the end of your next turn. You must finish a long rest before using this feature again.

Gifted:
You're unusually capable of a particular field. Pick a skill. You gain a +2 bonus to all ability checks made using that skill. (DMs would be wise to not allow Perception or Insight without prior notice)

Ironhide:
You are harder to hurt than average. You take 1 less damage from all sources, to a minimum of 0. You do not retain this benefit when polymorphed or while shapeshifting (including the Wild Shape feature).

Healing Hands:
Your skills are focused towards healing. When you restore Hit Points to a creature other than you, they gain an additional number of Hit Points equal to your Wisdom modifier, up to their hit point maximum.

Champion of War:
You thrive in the midst of combat. Once per turn, when an enemy's HP drops to 0, you can use your reaction to regain hit points equal to your proficiency modifier.

Defender of the Innocent:
You champion those who cannot protect themselves. You have advantage on attack rolls against enemies that have attacked noncombatants within the last minute, and any hits against them are critical hits.

Vicious:
Your power is only matched by your eagerness to strike. You deal +2 damage on weapon attacks when you have advantage on the attack roll.

Honorable:
You treat your enemies fairly, even when your life is on the line. You have advantage on attack rolls against targets that can see you and and are not suffering from Exhaustion or any status effect.

Precise:
Your keen mind lends you accuracy. Once per turn, you can add your Intelligence ability modifier to an attack roll. You can use this feature up to three times, and regain all uses upon completing a long rest.

Overwhelming Force:
Your focus on power lends it to any end. As a reaction, you can add your Strength ability modifier to one ability check, attack roll, damage roll, or saving throw before making the roll. You must finish a long rest before using this feature again.

Poison Resilience:
By some method, you are able to overcome most toxic substances. As a Bonus Action on your turn, you can end one effect creating a Poisoned status on yourself. You must finish a short or long rest before using this feature again.

Instructor:
You are born to teach. When you use the Help action, the subject of your Help gains a bonus to their attack roll or ability check equal to your proficiency bonus. You can use this feature up to three times, and regain all uses upon completing a long rest.

Silent:
You are at home in a crowd and on a rooftop at night alike. When you make a Stealth or Sleight of Hand check, you can choose to gain a +5 bonus to the check. You must finish a short or long rest before using this feature again.

MORE TO BE ADDED

Traits are supposed to be as powerful or a little more powerful than half a feat.

How Does Inheritance Work?
Characters usually have two traits that they inherited, one from each of their parents. When they are selecting these traits, they can choose either one trait from each parent or both traits from one parent. These are Bloodline Traits. In addition, they get one trait of their own, which may or may not be the same as a trait from either of their parents. This is a Personal Trait.
Bloodline traits can be chosen only from a parent's Bloodline traits, not from either parent's Personal Trait. You cannot possess duplicate traits, whether the traits are Personal or Bloodline.

Inheritance Example:
In a distant land, a King and Queen are married, and soon after they are blessed with a child. Both parents inherited traits from their parents: the King inherited Force of Will and Juggernaut from his father, and has the personal trait of Honorable. The Queen inherited Poison Resilence from her mother, Gifted (Persuasion) from her father, and her personal trait is Thorned Rose.
Their child the Prince is more intelligent and wise than both of them, while remaining charismatic and somewhat powerful. However, combat is not his chosen method of conquest. His player chooses the Force of Will trait from the father and Gifted (Persuasion) from the mother, then chooses Snake's Tongue as a personal trait. Let's hope he uses his ability to persuade for good.

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Updated 04-10-2017 at 06:10 AM by DarkisnotEvil

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