The World of Ebb
The real truth of the matter is, few people in
Ptolus use the word “lizardfolk.” To the ignorant,
they are “lizard men,” whether the individual is
male or female. To those in the know—and of
course, to actual members of the race—they
Personality: The common perception of the
lizardfolk is that they are sneaky, slippery, and
most likely thieves and liars. These are unfair characterizations.
In fact, most assarai are as honest as
most humans—as likely to be good as evil and, in
reality, usually a complex web of both.
Physical Description: These reptilian
humanoids stand a little taller than a human,
and their tails can measure up to 4 feet in
length. Their scales range in color from green to
grey to brown. City-dwelling lizardfolk dress in
standard human clothing: shirts and pants, often
including hooded cloaks to help disguise their
forms when they venture into certain districts.
Their clothing often looks worn, as its condition
matters little to most assarai.
Relations: Lizardfolk are primitive in the eyes
of most other humanoids, but they do not have
the litorians’ inherent culture of savage nobility
and honor. Instead, one can characterize them
most easily as folk with simple goals. Few
assarai seem ambitious by human standards.
Most are content when they simply have enough
to eat and can stay relatively safe from harm.
They aren’t even that demanding about shelter;
many are happy enough without it, as long as
the climate never turns very cold. They sleep at
night along the docks or sometimes in alleys or
in parks with fountains or pools. In a city where
they are tolerated, like Ptolus—a place known
for its tolerance, relatively speaking—the
assarai’s needs are easily met.
This fact of urban life results in copious free
time for lizardfolk, which their people never
enjoyed in the past, when they dwelled in small
villages and had to hunt and cultivate their own
food. Over the years, however, non-assarai have
decided that most lizardfolk are lazy, shiftless
thieves, for how else could they get along without
jobs or homes?
The truth is that lizardfolk in the city are very
resourceful. They often perform menial tasks for
those who will hire them on a temporary basis,
earning just enough money to tide them over for
a time. Others catch fish in the bay or even down
by the river. Still others forage through trash to
find food or something to sell. And of course,
some do steal—but even then, only enough to
meet their simple needs.
The thing to remember is that most assarai in
Ptolus do not find their state of indigence and
homelessness an undesirable situation. They don’t
need more than a little food to eat, and most
don’t want permanent shelters like other humanoids.
On warm days, it’s not uncommon to see
them sunning themselves in a city square or on a
rooftop. The City Watch routinely clears them out
of these places, but they always come back. In
fact, some assarai have grown so accustomed to
the Watch that they have learned to migrate
through the city from one favored location to the
next, keeping just ahead of the guards. Others
have found it easier to remain in lairs below the
city, living near the underground pools or
streams, just to stay out of the way.
Alignment: Lizardfolk are usually neutral.
Lizardfolk Lands: In a different world, the
assarai would have been a more prominent race. At
one time, they dominated much of the western portion
of the continent, particularly the lands near the
coasts, although they rarely trod regions north of
Ptolus. However, their territorial culture, as well as
their physical nature, brought them into frequent
conflict with mammalian races that assumed—
particularly long ago—that all lizardfolk were evil.
Though still common in most lands, lizardfolk
find little welcome in all but the most cosmopolitan
cities. Religion: Many lizardfolk in Ptolus choose to
worship Harredda in her animal and protection
aspects, although they revere her in reptilian
form rather than in raven form.
Language: City-dwelling assarai almost always
speak Common as well as Draconic. In fact, more
and more lizardfolk are forgoing Draconic altogether.
Only about one in three can read, and
most of those read Common, not Draconic.
Names: Lizardfolk do not distinguish between
male and female names. Assarai names are often
quite sibilant sounding, such as Slaathan,
Ssethenus, and Thessisth.
Adventurers: Not all lizardfolk are transient
and poor, of course. The exceptions often
become mercenaries or adventurers. Every once
in a while in Ptolus, assarai warriors attempt to
inspire their people to rise up and fight for a
better place in the city’s culture, but this never
works, because the lizardfolk are generally satisfied
with their lot. The “rabble-rousers,” while
trying to look out for their people’s well-being
and pride, have been overly influenced by the
cultures of other races—ones that look down
on the lizardfolk.
Because they are both homeless and hardy,
slavers in the city frequently make use of lizardfolk.
This is a situation the assarai do not accept,
and many an assarai’s adventuring career has
begun with a quest to rescue enslaved friends
or family. Many lizardfolk carry weapons to
protect themselves and their comrades from
abduction. Sadly, sometimes the City Watch looks
the other way in this situation, believing it better
that the slavers take the assarai than members of
Lizardfolk as Characters
Lizardfolk characters possess the following
Abilities: +2 Strength, +2 Constitution,
Size: Medium size.
Speed: A lizardfolk’s base land speed is 30 feet.
Racial Hit Dice: A lizardfolk begins with two
levels of humanoid, which provide 2d8 Hit Dice,
a base attack bonus of +1, and base saving throw
bonuses of Fort +0, Ref +3, and Will +0.
Racial Skills: An assarai’s humanoid levels give
him skill points equal to 5 × (2 + Intelligence
modifier, minimum 1). His class skills are
Balance, Jump, and Swim. Lizardfolk have a +4
racial bonus on Balance, Jump, and Swim checks.
Racial Feats: A lizardfolk’s humanoid levels
give him one feat.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A lizardfolk
is automatically proficient with simple weapons
Armor: +5 natural armor bonus.
Natural Weapons: 2 claws (1d4) and bite (1d4).
Special Qualities: Hold breath.
Languages: Automatic—Common and Draconic.
Bonus—Aquan, Goblin, Gnoll, and Orcish.
Favored Class: Druid.
Level Adjustment: +1.