Ardarians populate the mountainous northern region of Vaemilia, in their nation of Stonehold. Just as their homeland is unforgiving and rough, so too is a typical Ardarian attitude. Often content to spend their lives garnering honor for their clans and families, it is very difficult to move with Ardarian to outside concerns. This gruff attitude tends to be viewed as stand-offish by other races, but many Ardarians view their natural stubbornness with pride. Ardarians tend to find glory for their clans through martial conquest and victory, a tradition which is bolstered by a history and culture bound by tests of personal strength and adherence to codes of value and honor. Martial prowess is tantamount to a young Ardarian coming to their own, and take to training for a soldier’s life with great anticipation. Ardarians are not slow-witted conquerers however, and see the value in domestic craft such as pottery, weaving, farming and preparation of food, and do not regulate societal responsibility to specific genders, adopting an egalitarian attitude to gender and sex.
Ardarians typically stand slightly taller than humans, averaging out to 6’5” to 6’8” for males and 6’4” to to 6’7” for females. Their are covered in a coat of thick, wooly fur which helps to stave off the cold and high-altitude environments in which they live. Their fur coloration often tells of the region in which an Ardarian was born, ranging from black to white to brown, with highlights of neutral colors. All Ardarians have horns which grow above their brow line on their heads which curve back, similar to the horns of rams. Male horns tend to be more curvaceous than females. Ardarians regard their horns with great pride and ornament them with beads and strands of their own fur woven into intricate design to show moments of personal or familial glory. Their legs are powerfully built and muscular and swing backwards at the knee as opposed to human’s whose swing forward. Their feet end in cloven hooves while their hands are humanoid in shape with fingers and thumbs as a human’s.
Ardarians tend to live in small, rural clan-communities typically governed by a much larger settlement in the immediate area. This forms a basis of government for the nation of Stonehold, which places the height of political power in the city of Ardar, which governs the larger settlements (or ‘holds’), which governs the small communities which support the holds. To Ardarians, reverence and observance starts with personal and familial honor, then to the King of Ardar, and then to the Governors of the Holds. The importance of honor to Ardarians is sometimes hard to grasp to members of other races leading to many instances of a wayward, seemingly innocuous comment leading to a brawl with their Ardarian friends.
Relations with other Races
Ardarians are a very insular people, and find trusting others of different races to be difficult. However if that trust is attained with an individual it is resilient and lasting, but does not extend to other members of the same race. Generally Adrarians see members of all other races to be physically weak and therefore not bearing of consideration. The Titans however tend to be respected as rivals of physical might, but Ardarians still feel a sort of superiority to them because while anArdarian’s strength was earned, the Titan’s strength comes from their construction and little else. They have very little patience for Shem and Familiari due to those race’s inherent capricious nature; although they respect the Familiari’s bound to their kin, which they relate to their clan-bonds. They see Humans as a bit of a curiosity, as they are the only race to settle the coastal island chain, which is a testament to their strength, but their ambitious nature makes them seem scatterbrained and insatiable to the Ardarians.
Alignment and Religion
The alignment of Ardarians tend to range wildly between Lawful and Chaotic, depending on where they were raised. Ardarians in the outlands and borders of Stonehold tend to be more Chaotic while more cosmopolitan Ardarians tend to be Lawful. Ardarians tend to also lean to Good and Neutral, with Evil Ardarians typically being clanless savages who only seek personal glory. Ardarians tend to worship either Adar, Melech, or Sinon, with Governors and Nobility worshiping Ardar, soldiers worshiping Sinon and Melech being worshiped by more common folk. Although they might revere one of the brother Gods over the others, they still believe the others to be just as important, but perhaps not as integral to their lives.
Ardarians that leave their homeland for adventure are typically testing their strength against unknown odds in order to gain clan honor and personal glory. They tend toward more martial classes such as Fighters, Rangers and Barbarians and tend to eschew Arcane classes like the Bard, Sorcerer or Wizard. Ardarian Clerics are commonly servants of Melech, using runic magic. Theft and subterfuge is highly dishonorable, so Ardarian Rogues probably have a lot of explaining to do when it comes to how they came to be such a low-life.
Male: Darren, Yuld, Aden, Rodyek, Garmden, Borden, Finder.
Female: Chul, Jaimen, Fulyek, Ioden, Bodill, Yimsey
Ardarian Racial Traits
+2 Strength, +2 Wisdom, -2 Charisma: Ardarians are strong and insightful, but also very gruff.
Stability: Ardarians receive a +4 racial bonus to their CMD when resisting bull rush or trip attempts while standing on the ground.
Mountaineer: Ardarians are immune to altitude sickness and do not lose their Dexterity bonus to AC when making Climb checks or Acrobatics checks to cross narrow or slippery surfaces.
Sprinter: Ardarians gain a +10 foot racial bonus to their speed when using the charge, run, or withdraw actions.
Ferocity: If the hit points of an Ardarian fall below 0 but it is not yet dead, it can continue to fight. If it does, it is staggered, and loses 1 hit point each round. It still dies when its hit points reach a negative amount equal to its Constitution score.
Relentless: Members of this race gain a +2 bonus on combat maneuver checks made to bull rush or overrun an opponent. This bonus only applies while both the Ardarian and its opponent are standing on the ground.
Weapon Familiarity: Ardarians are automatically proficient with Warhammers and treat weapons with Ardarian in their name as Martial weapons. Treat all Dwarven weapons as Ardarian.
Language: Ardarians start play knowing Common and Ardarian, but Ardarians with a high Intelligence score can learn Ultarian, Familiari, Sylvan, Orc, Human, Goblin, and Gnoll.