Sounds like fun. I've got a few ideas I'd like to try. I'll throw up some ideas I've got when I find the homebrew then let you decide. Definitly want to go as a party.
The average Praedar stands a little under 7' tall, and is very heavily built. Their skin is tough and leathery like dragonhide, and some more daring adventurers seek to skin Praedar for their hides. The colour varies greatly between Clans, and everything from volcanic black to aquatic blue has been seen. However, greeny-brown is most common, as most Clans live within, or near to, forest areas. It has been noted, however, that the hides can change within a generation to match a new environment, and sometimes Praedar can seemingly change colour at will!
The teeth and claws of Praedar are razor-sharp, and their senses are amazingly acute. They are predatory, and an adult can easily consume a human-sized victim in a matter of minutes. Such a feast will sustain a Praedar for a week, perhaps longer, and thus humanoids are common prey for the Praedar.
Most Praedar are naked, their tough hides more than able to protect from most threats. Male genitles (the most obvious weakspot for most races) can be retracted completely into the body, and are then shielded behind muscular sheaths. Likewise, the eyelids of the Praedar are very tough, and they seem to be able to draw their own eyes inwards slightly to further lessen damage.
However, despite this, clothing is sometimes used. Praedar who are entering cold environments that they are not used to will usually wear furs, whilst Praedar that choose a "trading" lifestyle will normally wear clothes to mimic local styles. Armour, almost always made from hides, is sometimes worn by Praedar seeking to fight an especially difficult foe, or when they cannot call upon assistance from the Clan. Dragonhide is the most favoured armour, as killing such a creature proves the Praedar's strength beyond all question.
Praedar are meticulous about their own grooming. Praedar culture works on scents, and most Praedar do not have names unless they need to deal with other races. As such, Praedar like to ensure their natural scent is not masked by blood, dirt, or other substances. Praedar usually clean themselves by using concentrated saliva. Their hides are resistant to it, but their saliva can usually dissolve and remove blood and dirt. If this is insufficient, they will find other methods.
The only known instance when grooming is avoided is during a Bloodbath, where Praedar seek to cover themselves in the blood of a powerful enemy to prove their right to lead the Clan. However, not all Clans use, or even aknowledge, the ritual of the Bloodbath, so it is not universal.
Two factors dominate the Praedar Mindset: their focus to a specific Path, and their predatory instincts.
Praedar are emotionless. If they can feel such concepts as love or hate, joy or sorrow, they do not show it. They approach every situation with a calm logic, judging how their skills, or the skills of their companions, are best suited to solving the problem. However, unlike Elves or Raptorians, who take great pleasure in debating problems, Praedar prefer a head-on approach, and will almost always take a direct route to the solution. For example, where an Elf would sit and ponder how to bypass a trap, a Praedar would smash the trap, or else trigger it and trust their agility and endurance to get them through.
Many take the cold attitudes of the Praedar to be callous and uncaring, but this is not true. There are several cases where Praedar have shown their ability to give compassion. Most noted is the case where a female "Lone Wolf" Praedar was trusted with the life of the Princess Ilkia during a coup of the royal family. The Praedar slaughtered its way out of the castle, and fled into the wilderness. For three years the Praedar guarded the princess, tending to her needs and doings its utmost to provide her the life she was used to. When the royal family was finally returned to power, and the Princess brought out of exile, the Praedar left without word asking for reward, and before anyone could give thanks for its efforts.
Praedar live in Clans. The Clan-leader decides for the Clan a Path for it to follow, and thus how the Clan will live. Most Clans are based in areas where prey is abundant, although they can move at the whim of the Clan-leader. Often the death of the Leader will cause a shift in lifestyle as the new leader has different plans for the Clan. This is accepted as the way life should be, as it is the duty of the leader to find perfection in whatever form they deem most worthy.
Concepts such as names and writing are alien to most Praedar. They know each other by sight and scent, not by name. However, when names are needed, they will choose one they feel shows their true nature. This means that a Praedar's name can change depending on his social position, exploits, or the path the Clan follows. Praedar never refer to each other by name, unless non-Praedar are present.
The Predator outlook:
The Praedar are supreme, all else is Prey.
This outlook summarised the Praedar lifestyle. Loyalties are often fleeting, and they will happily kill almost anyone if they are hungry. However, they are not warlike, and dislike "blood-killing", or killing for purposes other than food. If they have no reason to feed, a Praedar will treat those of other races with the usual emotionless outlook, often warning them of when they next plan to hunt so as to give them time to make a quit exit!
The ultimate joy for a Praedar is the chase. Seeing prey run triggers a deep-rooted impulse to chase and kill. Whilst this is nullified when full, and only mildly active when content, a hungry Praedar is driven to the brink of insanity by fleeing prey, and will leap upon them without hesitation.
Praedar believe in mercy, of a sort. They do not understand concepts of torture, nor take joy in the infliction of pain. They are adept at killing their prey swiftly, and with as little pain as possible.
Praedar whose Clan interacts with other races may vary slightly in outlook. The most common change comes in hunting patterns, where the Praedar will avoid feeding on those they dwell with, turning instead to the races whose deaths will not be missed or mourned.
Interestingly, Praedar often make excellent chefs, providing you don't ask where they got their meat from...
Depending on what Clan the Praedar is from, when he last fed, and his station within the Clan, the Praedar could react in almost any way imaginable. However, Praedar rarely show emotion (although hungry Praedar may be seen as angry, or unsually fierce). They will treat others as they are treated: if they are feared, they will act frightening. If they are attacked, they will fight back. If treated with kindness and politeness, they will return the favour. If a Praedar owes someone a debt, they will strive to repay it (even if it only means not eating them, or stopping another from doing so...).
For most, life is simple, if animalistic.
The hunt is all-encompassing. Praedar hunt to survive, and will usually kill a prey large enough to sustain them for some time. Several Praedar may gang up on a larger prey, and share in the spoils of the kill.
Arts and Crafts:
Praedar have no art, nor do they have jewellery. However, they can learn to appreciate such things, if from a somewhat distant standpoint.
Technology and Magic:
Technology used by Praedar is always taken from others, and even then it only exists if the Praedar live amongst others. Praedar believe that they are striving for perfection, and to use artificial items would deviate from that perfection.
Magic, where it exists, is just another weapon in the Praedar arsenal. Praedar Sorcerors tend not to have spells that harm others, but instead enhance their own powers. Invisibility is a common (and frightening!) ability for Praedar Sorcerors. Wizards are all but non-existent, mainly because few Praedar can read or write, and also because they have little interest in "learning" the powers of magic; they either have it, or they don't.
Love and Reproduction:
Praedar love, like everything else in their society, is animalistic.
Praedar are only "in heat" for one month a year. However, this mating drive occurs at almost exactly the same time for all Praedar, and thus competition for a mate is fierce. Praedar are not choosy about mates; some mate for life, others mate with whomever is willing.
Praedar who live alone cope with this period in many different ways. As mating with another race would almost certainly kill the unfortunate recipient, or at least cause serious injury, they will either be drawn back to the Clans to mate, or will remove the urge from their system by exertion and activity. Praedar in this state will often hunt and kill far more than they ever intend to feed upon, and will actively seek opponents that are, perhaps, too much for their abilities. Older Praedar learn to suppress this mating urge entirely.
Praedar at war:
Praedar dislike war, seeing it as a waste of food. However, if forced to kill, they do so with fierce skill. A Praedar can easily tear a man apart, and punch clean through even the strongest armour. Most powerful of all is their scent; many animals have learnt to fear the scent, and even the bravest steed will panic and bolt rather than charge a Praedar.
As Praedar almost always fight to the death, and are naturally resilient, fighting a full Clan is not an act to be undertaken lightly...
Praedar care little for death, for death is a constant part of their lives. They do not wonder what becomes of them beyond death, for they know that any who try to feed of a dead Praedar will no-doubt be sharing in their fate.
Praedar have no burial rites, no funerals and no mourning. The Clan simply learns how to carry on without their lost comrade. However, bodies are often buried, or likewise disposed of, so as not to attract unwelcome attention, or scare off potential prey.
Likewise, Praedar seem not to respect the burial rites of others. They see them as pointless at best, and it not unheard of for Lone Praedar, too weak or desperate to hunt, to dig up freshly buried bodies and consume them. This is frowned upon by other Praedar, solely because they dislike the idea of eating anything that isn't freshly killed!
The following rules apply to Praedar Characters:
+4 Str, +2 Dex, +2 Con, -3 Int, -2 Cha.
Praedar are strong, fast, and tough. However, they neither understand, nor wish to understand, technology or learning. Likewise, their outlook is difficult to understand by others, and subtlety is not a racial strongpoint...
Medium. Praedar are (only just!) medium sized characters.
Darkvision (60ft), Low-light Vision.
Praedar vision is amazingly acute.
Praedar can use their hearing and smell to detect potential enemies, or prey.
Base Land Speed: 40ft.
Natural Armour: +4
The thick hides of the Praedar make them extremely hard to kill.
Natural Weapons: Talons.
The talons of the Praedar cause D6 points of Slashing damage (str bonus added as normal). In addition, when using Talons, Praedar count as having the following Feats:
Improved Unarmed Strike, Two Weapon Fighting, Weapon Finesse.
They may use these Feats with claws even if they do not meet the Prerequisits. They must purchase the Feats to use them with any other attack. In addition, they count as Proficient with their Talons (light weapons).
In addition, the Talon Attacks increase in strength as if the Preadar were a Monk (eg: increases to D8 damage at 4th level, D10 at 8th, etc).
These benefits do not stack with a Monk's benefits (in essence, a Praedar Monk loses their Unarmed Damage benefit, and replaces it with their natural benefit).
Ageless: Whilst Praedar's skin seems to turn grey in later years, their abilities seem unaffected. Indeed, nobody knows how long Praedar can live. The oldest recorded Praedar was 168, and still had enough strength and agility to tear through an entire warbard of Drow.
Praedar do not Age, and have no predetermined time of Death. However, as a rule, NPCs should not live much past 120 (by then, a rival will either kill them, or they will die fighting something). Most Praedar Characters should be about 15-30 years old.
Weapons and Armour Proficiency: Unproficient
Praedar are never Proficient with any weapons, or any armour, even if their Character Class gives them Proficiency.
Bonus Languages: Any.
Favoured Class: Barbarian
Forever Young Template
Childish, silly, and sometimes bratty, the forever young is the embodiment of youthful energy and curiosity. Physically they may appear to be actual children, but underneath their often immature behavior is a spark of insight, and a deeper understanding of the world around them. Willing to spend all day playing games with children, and the occasional willing adult alike, they also have the ability to rise to the challenge and overcome obstacles unthinkable by normal children.
Personality: Forever young are unquestionably childish. They are perhaps the greatest embodiment of childlike simplicity, but that doesn't necessarily mean they are stupid. They approach the world with a childlike awe that sends shivers of excitement down their spins at the prospect of a new adventure. Friendly, but often times shy around people they don't know, forever young often break the ice with a practical joke or other clever means of getting people to take a childish view of the world with them. However, forever young may be limited in their ability for social interaction because of their tendency to speak their minds without thinking before hand and generally ignoring the "rules" of the social order and "proper" social courtesy.
Relations: While tolerated mostly within their own races, even though they are treated as children, forever young get along best with gnomes and halflings- races who never really lost their own youthful spark. More serious races, such as dwarves and elves, tend to look down on the antics of forever young, especially because for all the blessings of their incredible life spans forever young still remain inmature. Even though there is a mix of feelings towards forever young by the other races, no race can deny it when a forever young has an "awe, how cute" moment, which usually brings smiles to all.
Alignment: Forever young tend towards the unruly chaotic side of life, but because they also generally embody the forces of youthful innocence, they tend more towards good than evil (although there are a few spoiled and bratty forever young in the world). The average forever young is happy to live a life that is carefree and filled with friends and fun adventures.
Religion: Forever young tend to worship the deities of their race. Some deities of good, such as Yandalla, have adopted the forever young under their protection because of how they embody innocence and youthful joy in the world.
Language: Forever young speak the languages their race speaks.
Names: Forever young naming patterns follow the naming patterns of their race.
Adventurers: Few forever young don't venture at least at some point. Because of their inquisitive nature, sense of imagination, and endless youthful energy forever young play all the time, acting out adventures they could have. Some take this playing to the extreme and adopt "characters" or "personas" which they use while adventuring, as if acting out a play or imaginary game. However, forever young are generally limited to going in groups because their appeared age keeps them from getting very far on their own. This can be an enjoyable experience, however, for both the forever young and the party they join as youthful energy always pushes an adventure forward.
Creating a Forever Young
"Forever Young" is an inherited template that can be inherited by any humanoid or monstrous humanoid (now referred to as the base creature) that keeps the base creature from reaching adulthood.
Size and Type: The base creature's type and size remains the same, although it does gain the small build special quality (see below).
Hit Dice: By character class.
Speed: Same as base creature.
AC: Same as base creature.
Attacks: Same as base creature.
Special Attacks: A forever young retains all the base creature's
special attacks. The forever young also gains the following special attack:
- Puppy Dog Eyes (ex): As a standard action the base creature can create an aura in a 15 foot radius that prevents any creature within the aura from attacking the base creature unless they succeed on a will save (DC 10 + 1/2 the base creature's character level + the base creature's Cha modifier). If the base creature takes any action that could be considered threatening or doesn't maintain the effect (a standard action) the effect ends. Creatures that exit the aura and reenter must make new saving throws. Evil creatures gain a +2 on their saving throw while good creatures take a -2 penalty on their saving throw.
Special Qualities: A forever young retains the special qualities of the base subject and gains the following special qualities:
- Forever Young (ex): The base creature is forever trapped within the body of a juvenile. The base creature does not age or grow old and die of old age. Bonuses and penalties from aging (such as physical penalties and mental bonuses) do not accrue as they normally would and the base creature cannot be subject to any effect that causes aging. When the base creature gains a character bonus to any one ability score (at 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th, and 20th level), they can only be placed in mental ability scores- the base creature's physical appearance does not naturally change. This effect does not keep the base creature from using disguises or spells that alter its appearance (such as the alter self spell) and doesn't not prevent be base creature from increasing its physical ability scores by magical means.
- Small Build (ex): While the base creature possess the same size category as the base race, it is of slightly smaller build and gains some benefits there of. The base creature can use weapons one size category smaller than its current size category without penalty, and it is treated as one size category smaller for bonuses a smaller size would grant if they are beneficial to the base creature (such gaining a +1 bonus on attack rolls and a +1 bonus to AC due to size, or gaining a +4 bonus to its hide check).
- Social Placement (ex): Because of its childish behavior, the base creature takes a -2 penalty on all charisma based interactions with adults (such as diplomacy, intimidate, gather information, etc…), but at the same time it gains a +2 bonus on charisma based interactions with children, as children don't feel the base creature represent an authority figure. Whenever the base creature uses diplomacy with an adult, if their attitude towards the base creature would be lowered one category (such as from friendly to indifferent) it instead goes down two categories. Whenever the base creature uses diplomacy with a child, if their attitude towards the base creature would be raised one category (such as from indifferent to friendly) it instead goes up two categories. Because this effect is based on personality rather than appearance, the base creature retains the penalties and bonuses from this effect even if disguised physically as a different age category.
- Childish (ex): The base creature still retains some of the traits associated with children (such as inquisitiveness and the supernatural ability to get into trouble). It takes a -1 to all of its saving throws, and perform (acting) is always considered a class skill for the base creature due to the large amount of time it spends "pretending."
Abilities: Same as the base creature's ability scores except it takes -2 Str and gains a +2 Dex. This reflects the less developed build of the base creature, but it's smaller size as opposed to fully matured members of its race.
Skills: The base creature receives a +2 childish bonus on listen, search and spot checks. Also, due to its childish nature the base creature takes a -8 childish penalty on all appraisal checks.
Organization: Solitary. Forever young hardly ever meet one of their own due to the rare nature of their existence.
Challenge Rating: Same as Base Creature's.
Treasure: Same as Base Creature's.
Alignment: Usually Chaotic Good.
Level Adjustment: +0.