Just a quick OSE-take of a favorite enemy group which might be able to function as Player Characters in the larger woodland region. No additional randomizers or anything as I'm working on other projects; but felt the desire to give this a shot and see how it turns out. It is, from a design perspective, a hodgepodge of OSE Barbarian, Half-Orc, Ranger and a smidge of Knight; which I think encapsulates the general vibe of Goatmen as a whole, with room to be a Longhorn or Shorthorn as a bit of customization.
The horned folk of the High Wold, generally of evil bent and wicked desire. Equal to humans in intellect, but of a devil’s cunning. Some will collaborate with the soulless animals of humanity and the perfidious demi-fey of the wilds to increase their personal power and grasp at dangerous ambitions.
|Red Steel's take on the O.G.
Woldish Goatman [Race-as-Class]
Prime requisite: DEX and STR
Hit Dice: 1d6
Maximum level: 9
Armour: Leather, chainmail, shields, plate (upon becoming a Longhorn)
Languages: Alignment language, Woldish, Gaffe, Caprice (if INT or CHA is 13+)
Special: A Woldish Goatman with at least 13 in one prime requisite gains a 5% bonus to experience. If a Woldish Goatman has an INT, CHA, or WIS of 13+ they will automatically be a Longhorn come 5th level.
Longhorn Gazes & Shorthorn Chicanery
Upon reaching 5th level, the Woldish Goatman’s hierarchical position is all but certain. The character must choose between being a Longhorn and a Shorthorn.
Being a Longhorn...
Those who are Longhorns gain the use of a terrible gaze, which grants the use of a Charm spell once per day. Those afflicted by the gaze are additionally unable to harm the Longhorn until the sunrise of the following day. Additionally the butt attack of a Longhorn increases to a d8 damage dice.
But to their detriment Longhorns are expected to serve as the sadistic noble knights of their people. They must engage in Single Combat as Knights do (See Advanced Fantasy Genre Rules, p28). They will also be expected to serve one of the Goatlords, which will grant them enemies of others. Being a hedge knight will gain them further enemies without any diplomatic benefit.
Being a Shorthorn...
Shorthorns are not blessed with a sorcerous gaze or powerful horns, and the shame of their position leads to greater efforts in chicanery and thuggery whilst adventuring. Shorthorn gain a +1 AC bonus due to the abuses suffered leading to a resilient hide, and they gain a 3-in-6 chance of going unnoticed when sneaking up on a target. If the Shorthorn goes unnoticed, the target may be surprised.
Shorthorns occupy a lower role in society, but as a result little is expected of them to serve. Humanity elsewhere in the Wold look upon a Shorthorn with far less fear than they gaze upon a Longhorn; and as such the hatreds suffered are somewhat less. Shorthorn are not expected to swear fealty to any Goatlord, it is assumed by any Longhorn that a Shorthorn must already be owned chattel. As such, Shorthorns can make for reliable spies and informants due to their innocuous position.
|Meredith McClaren, used without permission.
Woldfish Goatmen Skills
Goatmen of the Wold can use the following skills with the chance of success shown in the matrix below:
▶ Climb sheer surfaces (CS): Only applies to natural surfaces (e.g. tree trunks, cliff faces). A skill roll is required for each 50’ height to be climbed. Failure indicates that the Goatman falls at the halfway point, suffering falling damage. They are goats after all.
▶ Hide in shadows (HS): Requires the Goatman to be motionless—they can neither attack nor move while hiding.
▶ Move silently (MS): A Goatman may attempt to sneak past enemies.
Goatmen can use all types of weapons and can use leather armour, chainmail, and shields. Longhorns may wear plate, but in doing so lose their ability to Climb Sheer Surfaces.Goatmen also possess an innate headbutt attack, which deals d4 damage.
Disdain of Drune & Witches
The Woldish Goatmen have long had poor dealings with the Watchers of the Wood and the Witches of the region. They will not knowing assist either such force and any attempts made to parlay with such forces (not intended for outright treachery) are made with a -2 penalty to reaction rolls. Longhorns who are noted for receiving aid from these forces will be assumed traitors to their people; Shorthorns will be assumed to be bewitched and pitiable.
Foraging and Hunting
A party possessing a Woldish Goatman succeeds at foraging with a 2-in-6 chance, and finds prey when hunting with a 2-in-6 chance. If it is a Shorthorn, the foraging chance is increased to 4-in-6; if it is a Longhorn the hunting chance is increased to 4-in-6.
|Laurie Skelton, used without permission.
The Woldish Goatmen are almost universally reviled within the Dolmenwood, as such an retainer in their employ have their loyalty score reduced by one. Longhorns will never serve a Shorthorn, asking such is grounds for a duel. This penalty is not present for Shorthorns serving a Longhorn.
After Reaching 9th Level
A Woldish Goatman may make the fool’s errand of seeking true power and authority, carving out a dominion within the wilderness. Longhorns may build a castle of stronghold and control the surrounding lands, becoming known as a Lord or by some other title won through belligerence against their now rival Goatlord peers.
Shorthorns will never be accepted as rulers, and thus they may establish a village under the service of a proper lord, or establish a rebel stronghold, attracting 2d6 bandits, rebels, and other goatmen destined for shorthorn nothingness. These rebels will serve the character with some reliability, but if killed or enslaved by Longhorns, the PC will not be able to attract new rebels to replace them (unless daring raids are performed).
Woldish Goatman Level Progression
Woldish Goatman Saving Throw
Woldish Goatman Skills Chance of Success