Common Werite Abilities

All Werites, unless noted, have the following general traits:

Ability to Shapeshift into animal form. Shapeshifting is a full round action and costs one point of Body-Mind-Spirit, but the were-creature can stay in animal form for as long as he or she wishes once the transformation in complete. While in animal form, the Werite's saving throws, BAtCh, and other checks and basic attributes remain the same, though various other bonuses are gained in animal form as detailed in each specific type of Werite.

While in animal form, no spiritual powers can be invoked (because the animal form cannot speak, properly gesture, or play musical instruments), nor can any weapons be used unless they are simply thrown or designed for use by an animal (for instance, a razor gauntlet made for a bear). However, Shapeshifting will not end any spiritual powers that are already in effect, nor will it negate any bonuses gained from magical items. Also, innate abilities still function while in animal form. All items the Werite is carrying vanish into a pocket dimension (all Werites seem to have a form of the innate power Pack Rat that is triggered solely be shape changing.)

While in animal form, there is no normal direct way to tell that the creature is not a true animal. Of course, the behavior of the Were-creature might give this away, and certain spells might discern the truth (for instance, most empathic powers would reveal a sentient intelligence), but the animal form is NOT an illusion and thus cannot be stripped away with True Sight or Dispel Magic.

Behavior in animal form: This is hard to predict and requires good role-playing skills. In most cases, the Werite's personality will undergo some changes while in animal form. He or she may suddenly develop a craving to hunt or kill prey, or solve problems simply by clawing out the throat of an opponent. While the Werite is still a person, the animal's feral urges can be very strong and will grow stronger the longer he or she spends in animal form. 

After a week in animal form, the Game Master should have the Werite make a Willpower Check. If he or she fails, the were-creature then acts in all ways as an animal of the appropriate type – this does not, however effect the Were-creature's perception of friend or foe unless he or she is otherwise provoked. Once a day after then, the Were-creature may again attempt to make a Willpower Check in an effort to regain his or her senses. Once the check is made, the Werite reverts to standard form and behavior and cannot shapeshift again for one full day because of the risks involved.

Ability to Shapeshift into Human form. While turning into an animal is easy, it is much more difficult to suppress their animal side completely. It can be done, however. When a Werite wishes to assume a fully human form, he or she must first make a successful Body-Mind-Spirit check. If successful, it costs one point of B-M-S to make the change, and costs an additional half point per hour thereafter. While in Human form, the Werite does not regenerate B-M-S, thus the hybrid being must eventually return to his or her standard form.  While in Human form, the Werite loses all special abilities, but also sheds all penalties. If the Werite rounds out of B-M-S prior to returning to the standard form, the hybrid collapses into unconsciousness and immediately reverts to standard form. The creature then remains comatose until the Werite's Body-Mind-Spirit completely regenerates.

Unarmed Combat: All of the common Were-creatures described here deal 1 point of additional damage with their bare hand-claws in combat. This bonus is applied to all unarmed combat attacks that would allow the Werite to strike with its claws while not in animal form. Note that Werites have claws on both their hands and feet, so kicks could also deal claw damage (provided the Werite is not wearing shoes or boots.)


Attribute Modifiers

All Were-creatures use the same number and kind of dice for each attribute as a Human. This is because Werites, in humanoid form, have generally Human stats. Modifiers to the results are applied later and vary with the species of Were-creature.

  • All Werites gain a +1 bonus to System Shock saving throw because of their Shapeshifting nature.
  • All Were-creatures have a base empathic resistance of 10%
  • The experience penalty is -5% for all Werites except Weredragon. All Weredragons incur a 10% experience penalty.
  • All Werites, because of the somewhat animal-like shape of their hands, get a –2 penalty for any skills that require fine hand-eye coordination or use of delicate or precise tools. These penalties may be negated if custom tools are created for the Were-creature.
  • Werites cannot wear any armor heavier than leather armor. Donning metallic armor of any kind prevents the Werite from shape changing and leaches 1 point of Endurance per round - reaching 0 Endurance renders the Werite unconscious. Not surprisingly, most Werites do not like caves or enclosed metal structures.
  • Silver weapons deal double damage against all Werites. The old folk-tale about using silver against a Werewolf is true, and all Werites suffer when struck with silver weapons.
  • Werites live for about 200 years. Many believe that the animal DNA in a Were-creature's system, as well as their ability to shape shift, lets them reduce the effects of aging.