5E Dwarf Subraces Part 1 – Volcano Dwarf

Volcano Dwarf:

Personality: Volcano Dwarves are similar to Mountain Dwarves in that they both have gruff, tradition rich lives. Volcano Dwarves are usually more stable in their emotions than other dwarves, but they reach their tipping point, they erupt with emotions far stronger than almost any other race. A raging Volcano Dwarf would be a terrifying sight. Like other dwarves, a good time often includes a strong drink and crafting metal objects.

Physical Description: Volcano Dwarves are as black as the soot they surround themselves in. Their hair, generally very dark in color, is very rough and often curly due to the intense heat that surrounds them. Volcano Dwarves are slightly taller than other dwarves, but not by much. They generally weigh slightly more than a Mountain Dwarf of the same height. Volcano Dwarf eyes are generally black, orange, or red. A Volcano Dwarf’s blood is hot to the touch, glows slightly and is bright red-orange in color. Their hair is generally a dark red or orange color, but an older Volcano Dwarves’ hair turns black instead of white.

Relations: If a Volcano Dwarf never leaves his home volcano, then he is likely to never meet another friendly race, as few can withstand the heat of the volcano cities Volcano Dwarves inhabit. However, seeing how Volcano Dwarves make high quality metal tools, aspiring Volcano Dwarf entrepreneurs leave their home to sell high quality gear to other races.

Alignment: Like other dwarves, Volcano Dwarves lean heavily towards lawful. Unlike the Mountain Dwarves, however, Volcano Dwarves don’t lean towards good or evil. Having few natural enemies, at least in their volcano homes, a Volcano Dwarf usually has no reason to fight for good or evil. Volcano Dwarves usually only have deal with others of their own kind.

Lands: Volcano Dwarves live in volcanoes, with cities built out of stone, hardened ash and extremely durable metals. They often use the lava in the volcanoes to their own purposes, such as bathing, metal crafting, and on occasion, use in very strong, very hot drinks. Their volcano homes tend to be rich in precious metals and gemstones.

Religion: Volcano Dwarves, like other dwarves, mainly worship Moradin, the god of Dwarves. Other Volcano Dwarves may worship fire gods, blacksmithing gods, or gods of great strength.

Language: Being secluded, Volcano Dwarves generally have experience with fewer languages than the typical dwarf. They do often learn Ignan, to speak with the few creatures that live nearby.

Names: Volcano Dwarves name themselves very similarly to Mountain Dwarves, except that their clan names often have some reference towards heat.

Clan Names: Flameburn, Magma-maned, Smokestucked, Molteneer, Eruptators

Racial Stats:

These stats are in addition to the base Dwarf Stats:

+1 Strength – Volcano Dwarves are strong in body, but not to the extent of their mountain cousins

Immunity to fire – A volcano dwarf is immune to fire damage, due to the terrible heat that is found in and around active volcanoes. A little too hot feels just about right for Volcano Dwarves

Vulnerability to cold- Volcano Dwarves have vulnerability to cold damage. Any temperature below extreme heat feels a bit chilly to a Volcano Dwarf, and any amount of actual cold can be unbearable to them.

Design notes:

Immunity to a damage type is extremely potent as far as racial abilities go, with only Yuan-Ti Purebloods having immunity to poison damage to go off of at the time of writing. However, total immunity to heat and fire does give the Volcano Dwarf an identity of it’s own, completely separating this subrace from the other Dwarf subraces.

Vulnerability to a damage type is also unusual in a player race, and will be a devastating weakness if a Volcano Dwarf adventurer were to go against a powerful creature of winter such as a White Dragon.

The small strength bonus ensures that Volcano Dwarves aren’t objectively better than Mountain Dwarves, who have the distinction of being one of very few races who has a net +4 to stats compared to the standard +3.