Saturday, 23 October 2010

Savage Eberron: Half-Giants

My infrequent Savage Eberron game borrows the character generation rules outlined here, which give starting heroes the equivalent of two free Edges. This makes them more powerful than standard Savage Worlds characters, but I think that's in keeping with the tone of the setting. With that said, I present a new race, the half-giant.

  • Strong: Half-giants are not as strong as their brobdinagian forebears, but are nonetheless mightier than most other humanoids. Half-giants begin with a d6 in Strength.
  • Tough: With increased strength comes increased durability. Half-giants have thick leathery skin and a high pain threshold, reflected in a starting Vigour of d6.
  • Big: Half-giants stand somewhere between seven and eight feet in height, and can be almost as broad. They start with a +1 to Size.
  • Low Light Vision: A half-giant retains their ancestors' ability to see in darkened conditions. Half-giants ignore penalties for Dim and Dark lighting.
  • Outsider: The giants of Xen'drik are considered primitive savages, the pathetic remnants of a once-proud empire, and their half-breed offspring are often seen as little better. Half-giants subtract 2 from their Charisma when around the more "civilised" races.
  • Clumsy: Half-giants are big and strong, but they have little in the way of natural grace. Each Agility increase during character generation requires an expenditure of two points rather than one.

Half-giants were introduced to Eberron in Secrets of Xen'drik, which lifted the mechanics straight from the Expanded Psionics Handbook. This is in keeping with the stated design goal of the setting that "if it exists in D&D, then it has a place in Eberron", but since the half-giant in the EPH is itself lifted wholesale from the Dark Sun setting, complete with psionic abilities and a partial immunity to the desert heat, it's a bit of an odd fit. In all fairness, the designers make an attempt to fit the race into the setting, positioning them as an engineered species, constructed by the Inspired from the giants of Xen'drik, then returned there to act as heavy labour in the Inspired's projects on the continent. Even so, it's a bit of a glaring fudge if you ask me, so I've decided to go for something much simpler and have them be the result of unions between humanoids and the native giants of Xen'drik.


  1. Out of curiosity, why did you leave off the stomp power? Pummel could have worked if you limited its use.

  2. Hi Kristian. It was out of simplicity more than anything. If I'm adding something into a game, I like to keep it as uncomplicated as possible. It's also easier to add something in later than take it out if it doesn't work.

    1. Fair enough. I had attempted to stat out my own version of the Half-giant, but ran across some balancing issues. Trying to keep all of the aspects of the d20 version is difficult considering it has LA: +1. At least adapting stomp was easy; I just granted a limited version of pummel. The race as I have it written up is still overpowered though. I'll need to trim it down some.

    2. Yes, with conversions I've given up trying to get an exact match with the original, and instead go for something that's close enough to be recognisable.

      I may look at half-giants again as I might try mixing Savage Worlds and Dark Sun.


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