Therianthropy

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Of the oldest folktales in Alm is that of werewolves, accursed individuals who twist into a monstrous creature upon the full moon. Therianthropes came into being from the Thousand Year Midnight, along with many other creatures of darkness such as Vampyrs or Dah’jin. Therianthropy is a curse from their patron Thael that affects the very physiology of an individual, imprinting within them a twisted version of a predatory animal born of their deepest buried primal instincts. Therianthropes who give into this primal alter ego seek to bring Alm back to an age before civilization, where the law of the jungle ruled over all life on Alm. They seek to break down governments, and abhor decadence. They are seen as the parallel to Vampyrs, which desire to rule over the world in Vampyric Courts which are as byzantine as they are gruesome.

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Lineages

When an individual contracts the Therianthrope curse, they will take on the lineage of whom they were inducted by. In rare instances where they are cursed directly as a result of a dark ritual of Thael, they will instead be corrupted into a lineage based upon their deepest desires. There are many lineages throughout Alm, most of which take on the aspects of a carnivoran.

OOC Note: You may create a unique Therianthrope so long as it is based directly from a carnivoran. Listed below are prominent lineages, though there are dozens in existence. While untransformed, you must have at least two mundane, subtle physical changes to your body derived from the lineage of your Therianthropic form which must be stated on your Character Application.

Lineages are purely aesthetic and confer no mechanical advantage.

Lycanthrope Lineage [Wolf]

One of the most common folktales told throughout Alm is that of the Lycans. The tale varies depending where in the world it is told, ranging from the Amyrians speaking of soldiers whose souls were corrupted by an insatiable hunger to the Faefolke telling their children of other’s of their kind who were overcome by their primal nature. The true nature of these wolves of myth is left largely to speculation, but it cannot be disputed that these creatures exist in the realms of Alm.

Physical Changes:

Blue-gray eyes when untransformed

Enlarged canine teeth, sharper than normal.

Ursanthrope Lineage [Bear]

A source of pride among a number of the Mountain Clansfolk, Ursanthropes are seen as the pinnacle of connection between a human and the [[Åndelærer]] or Spirit Guides. Despite the ghastly appearance of a common Ursanthrope, they may walk plainly among the people of the Mountain Clans with many showing reverence to them. Similarly to the more common Lycanthropes, the Ursanthropes are not well liked by the world at large despite their nature being known to the Mountain Clans.

Physical Changes:

Ursanthropes unilaterally have brown eyes when untransformed, and suffer from an increase in body hair on their forearms & face.

Rusanthrope Lineage [Deer]

Every so often, an odd fisherman or two within the Mellowmire returns home with tales of horned, fanged deer with pelts that glowed bright as a lantern but green as the murky depths of the swamps. These individuals had unknowingly encountered the very rare Rusanthrope, a shifter in the same vein as the common Lycan but far more mysterious. Next to nothing is known of the Rusanthropes beyond their striking appearance and their tendency to combat the predators of the swamp. Some Riverfolke have taken to hailing them as deities of the Mire for their seemingly protective nature, though few have ever seen a Rusanthrope in human form.

Physical Changes:

Rusanthropes inherit emerald geen eyes when untransformed, and their hair colour always seem to dull towards a browner or blacker color.

Kibanthrope Lineage [Sabertooth]

In the ravaged territory known as the Breachlands, the Orcish tribes speak of a creature that moves as wind through the ashen fields. This beast has come to be known as a Kibanthrope, a beast with fur black as the ash and teeth half the length of a man’s forearm. These creatures are often perceived as the reincarnated souls of the strongest of the Orcish warriors who have returned to challenge their people in battle. As a result of this belief among the Orcish people, any Orc who slays a Kibanthrope is, according to their culture, guaranteed to be reincarnated as an even stronger one to strengthen their people.

Physical Changes:

Kibanthropes typically have yellow or golden eyes when untransformed, and hold a slightly hunched posture as their head hangs slightly lower than normal.

Akumanthrope Form [Dah’jin Shift]

Among the Dah’jin there is a tale passed down from generation to generation. A tale that tells of a creature with hide dark and slimy as [[The Abyss]], teeth sharper than swords and a visage of yellowed bone. This tale is that of an Akumathrope, an abomination created when an individual’s blood and soul are both cursed. These beasts are the stuff of nightmares with large quills sticking from its spine, seemingly sharp enough to impale any poor soul who was unfortunate enough to encounter it. With such a wide variance in the creature’s description between the different tellings of the story, it can be inferred that the Akumathrope's aesthetic differs between Dah'jin hosts and is closely linked to the Dah'jin’s appearance aspects. Nothing is known of these beasts beyond the folktales, suggesting that that is all they once were. However, as the years have crept onward, similar sightings have begun rising in frequency throughout continents, proving that this legend may very well be true.

Physical Changes:

Akumathropes typically have purple eyes when they are untransformed, as well as a forked tongue.

Abilities

When the curse takes root in the blood of an afflicted, the Therianthrope is able to develop their talents through continued use of their shifted form. The specific developments vary from individual to individual but the majority of these mutations are benefits to the Therianthrope. Some of the more demanding abilities displayed by older, more experienced shifters have drawbacks that either limit or caution against their carefree use.

Mechanical Rules
  • Therianthropes maintain their racials, and they are only disabled when transformed. Additionally, Therianthropes gain their Base Traits for free which operate similar to racials.
  • Therianthropes are unable to cast magic. If a mage becomes infected with Therianthropy, they will lose their ability to cast magic for as long as the curse stays.
  • Therianthropes are a form of Deviancy. You may only have 1 Deviancy at a time.
  • Purchases traits must be stated on your Character Application and are locked once chosen. If cured, upon reinfection you will maintain the same purchased traits. You may change your purchased traits at any point in a therianthropic ritual, which costs 100 Trade Gold in components to complete.
  • You may only be in one form at a time.
  • You must purchase a form when contracting Therianthropy. Purchased Traits only function in your Therianthropic form, unless stated otherwise.
  • Transforming in or out of your Therianthropic form is always an action if it is deliberate. If an effect or otherwise forces you to transform, it is always immediate and requires no action.


Choose one of the following Curse Types. They determine how many points you have to spend towards Purchased Traits, as well as the mechanics regarding your transformation.

Name Type Points+ Description
Willful Passive 2 As an action, you may transform in or out of your Therianthope form. You are able to speak, and are fully conscious within it. You may hold some urge to hunt, though you are capable of controlling it unless under exceptional duress or starvation.
Nightbound Passive 4 You uncontrollably transform into your Therianthrope form as soon as night begins. While transformed, you are unable to speak, though are capable of communication with other transformed Therianthropes through howling or other animalistic vocabulary.

Once transformed, you hold an uncontrollable urge to hunt. In this state, you are completely unaware of your own actions consciously, as you are driven by a primal desire.

After hunting one individual and knocking them unconscious, you will gain consciousness while in your Therianthrope form, with at most a vague recollection of what has happened. For the rest of the night, you are able to control your form, and may use your action to transform in or out of it. You may still hold some urge to hunt, though you are capable of controlling it unless under exceptional duress or starvation.

Upon sunrise, you will uncontrollably transform out of your Therianthropic form.

Base Traits

Name Type Description
Therianthropy Passive This is where you list your Willful or Nightbound properties on your transformation and its mechanics.
Bestial Body Passive You cannot become sick via normal means such as the common cold or other illnesses. This makes them exceptionally healthy individuals which may appear as an oddity should they have repeated trips to a clinic.

You can consume rotted or spoiled foods without any consequence to your stomach.

You are immune to ingested poisons, and can see through mundane darkness.

While in your Therianthrope form, you are vulnerable to silver, which will burn at the touch. You do not have this vulnerability when untransformed.

Hemothaelia Passive Your blood becomes a vessel for Thael’s primal influence. If an individual imbibes or otherwise consumes an adequate amount of Therianthrope blood, they risk contracting the blood curse. Upon consumption of 8oz of undiluted and pure Therianthrope blood, an individual may become a Therianthrope.

If they are resisting, there is a 50% chance of contracting Therianthropy.

If they are willing, they will contract Therianthropy.


Any who contract Therianthropy will begin their transformation over a 3 day period. Upon the first day, they will begin to feel a slight fever, which increases in intensity upon the third day, where delirium sets in. By the end of the third day into the night, the individual will uncontrollably transform into their Therianthropic form and lose their sense of self, filled with their deepest primal instincts to chase and hunt prey. Once they have hunted an individual and fought them regardless of victory or defeat, they shall become a complete Therianthrope

Carnivorous Reach Ability When in your normal form, you are able to extend and retract your claws as a bonus action. This is usable outside of shifted form unlike other abilities. This allows you to utilize your hands as slashing weapons at close range, which utilizes unarmed skill.

Purchasable Traits

Name Type Cost Description
Prodigal Form Form 1 Your Therianthropic form takes on a basic bipedal physique. You are capable of running on all fours, and have a sense of smell and sight similar to a predatory animal. You are roughly as strong as a trained man in this form.

You have large claws and a strong jaw while in this form, and utilize your unarmed bonus for attacks. If you do not have an unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +3.

You are no taller than 6’ feet while in this form.

Brutish Form Form 2 Your Therianthropic form takes on a bulky, menacing physique. You are capable of running on all fours while in this form, though you are unable to move any faster than a jogging speed, weighed down by your mass.

You are much more muscular while in this form, having a strength and constitution comparable to an ox, which is able to closely outperform an orc. You are able to apply this force in a number of manners, such as, though not limited to, throwing individuals or lifting heavy objects such as carts. If you have a lower (or no) unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +5 for melee attacks made in this form.

You are no taller than 6’3” feet while in this form.

Tracker Form Form 2 Your Therianthropic form takes on a lithe, agile physique. You are capable of running on all fours while in this form, able to run 50% faster than the average human. You have a sense of smell and sight similar to a predatory animal, and are as physically strong as an average man.

You utilize your unarmed bonus for attacks. If you do not have an unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +3 for attacks made with your claws or bite.

You are much more agile in this form, able to climb vertical surfaces, and jump up to five blocks horizontally or vertically. You are unable to physically tire, though may still become sluggish or fall to wounds.

You are unable to be surprised while in this form, anticipating any incoming attacks with cat-like reflex, though this does not necessarily mean they can be dodged if physically impossible. This effect only lasts for the first attack someone makes towards you within an encounter.

You are no taller than 6’ feet while in this form.

Greater Prodigal Form Form 3 Your Therianthropic form takes on a larger, more powerful though balanced bipedal physique. You are capable of running on all fours, able to run 50% faster than an average human and have a sense of smell and sight similar to a predatory animal. You are roughly as strong and resistant as an orc in this form. If you have a lower (or no) unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +4 for melee attacks made in this form.

You are much more agile in this form, able to climb vertical surfaces, and jump up to three blocks horizontally or vertically. You are unable to physically tire, though may still become sluggish or fall to wounds.

You are unable to be ambushed in this form, sensing a hidden attack. This effect only triggers for hidden attacks made during the first round of an encounter.

You are no taller than 6’2” feet while in this form.

Hulking Form Form 3 Your Therianthropic form takes on a massive, grossly powerful physique. You are incapable of running on all fours while in this form, and can only move as fast as a speed walk as you are weighed down by your unnatural mass.

You are much more muscular while in this form, having a strength and constitution comparable to an ogre. You are able to apply this force in a number of manners, such as, though not limited to, throwing individuals, breaking through weak wooden walls, destroying weakened stonework, bending plate armor, ripping lamp posts from the ground, or lifting heavy objects such as lowered gates. If you have a lower (or no) unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +7 for melee attacks made in this form.

You are no taller than 7’ feet while in this form.

Prowler Form Form 3 Your Therianthropic form takes on a lithe, agile physique. You are capable of running on all fours while in this form, able to run twice as fast as the average human. You have a sense of smell and sight similar to a predatory animal, and are as physically strong as an average man.

You utilize your unarmed bonus for attacks. If you have a lower (or no) unarmed bonus, instead roll with a +5 for melee attacks.

You are much more agile in this form, able to climb vertical surfaces with relative ease, and jump up to seven blocks horizontally or vertically. You are unable to physically tire, though may still become sluggish or fall to wounds.

You are unable to be surprised while in this form, anticipating any incoming attacks with cat-like reflex, though this does not necessarily mean they can be dodged if physically impossible. This effect only lasts for the first attack someone makes towards you within an encounter.

As a reaction, you may dodge an incoming target attack which would have hit you. This ability may only be used twice per encounter.

As an action, you may make a bite attack against an individual. If successful, you may clasp them into your mouth and move freely, which they cannot be freed by outside parties. After the end of your next turn, the grappled target may begin rolling a d20 against you as their action. If they succeed, they will be able to free themselves. If you are unconscious, you will automatically let go.

You are no taller than 6’ feet while in this form.

Preyvision Passive 1 You are able to see through walls up to two meters thick. You are unable to sense creatures in this way within consecrated areas such as holy sites or churches.

You are able to see through magical darkness, and illusions while using Preyvision.

Rending Passive 1 Your claws are unnaturally sharp, easily comparable to iron. The claws are now capable of tearing iron bars, iron doors, wooden doors, and fencing. They are capable of tearing leather armour, as well as break chainmail links where they strike, and dent plate. You roll with an additional +1 bonus for melee attacks made while in Therianthrope form.
Wildwalker Passive 1 Your skin is highly resistant to inclimate weather with their skin providing an enhanced buffer against the elements. This prevents frostbite, sunburn, or any similar conditions. Despite this, you are still capable of being burned or set alight.

Additionally, you are immune to any rooting or trapping of your legs or feet.

Therianthropic Regeneration Passive 1 You are able to withstand even the most grievous injuries.

When you first transform into your Therianthrope form (only occurs once per day, cannot be spammed) any injuries or wounds are healed upon transformation. This does not regenerate lost limbs or other body parts.

Outside of an encounter, you regenerate at an inhuman rate. As long as your head is not destroyed, you may regenerate yourself to completion. Cuts and lacerations heal in a matter of minutes, a limb takes a matter of hours, multiple limbs or your entire body will take days. Wounds caused by silver do not heal at all for a time, requiring 2 OOC days before regeneration begins to occur. This takes effect even while in normal form. You may choose to slow or halt this effect at any time.

Bestial Endurance Passive 1 You are immune to magical statuses being implemented upon you, such as alchemy or curses. You are not immune to magic however, and may still be damaged or affected by spells.

You are unable to be cured from Therianthropy if you do not will it.

This takes effect even while in normal form.

Mimicry Ability 1 As a bonus action you are able to mimic voices towards a target in emote range, that they have positive and meaningful relations with. This ability can be used as a means to move the target, should they fall for it, or any other means of mundane deception or mockery. You must have heard the individual’s voice in order to mimic it.
Horrify Ability 1 As a bonus action you may offer an intimidating or horrific display, such as a terrible howl or an unnatural transformation of your appearance. Any targets of your choice within a 5 block radius are struck with terror, and are unable to act for their next turn.

You may only use Horrify once per combat, or once every hour if outside of combat.

Any individuals affected by Horrify are unable to be affected by it again for at least 2 turns after being able to act again.

Alpha’s Call Ability 2 Once per day, as an action you may summon two familiars that match your Therianthrope form. These familiars may be commanded as a bonus action simultaneously to target someone within emote range for simple biting/clawing attacks which utilize a base d20, and half of your current unarmed bonus rounded down. You may also opt to use the familiars to block attacks as a reaction, each familiar able to take one attack before being rendered incapable of fighting. The familiars are incapable of rolling defense.

They will scamper off, or disappear at the end of combat or after an hour if outside of combat.

  • Lycans will summon two small wolves.
  • Ursas will summon two bear cubs.
  • Rusas will summon two does.
  • Kibas will summon two teenage sabertooths.
  • Akumas will summon a pair of their Dah’jin familiars but slightly larger in size.

Trivia

  • Therianthropes were first discovered upon the Thousand Year Midnight, where individuals in towns would seem unnaturally feverish, before being compelled to walk out and under moonlight. As they did so, their bodies warped into the first Therianthropes, who immediately turned on their friends and family to hunt, before retreating into the dark forests.
  • The Bleakwatch, a group of occult hunters, actively pursue and target any known Therianthropes among other abnormal creatures.
  • Akumanthropes are incredibly rare creatures, though the reason is unknown to scholars.