Lizardfolk

Lizardfolk, or lacorti as they call themselves, are proud and powerful reptilian predators that make their communal homes in scattered villages deep within swamps and marshes. Lizardfolk are viewed by many other races as backwater savages, but within their isolated communities lizardfolk are actually a vibrant people

Only a fool looks at the lizardfolk and sees nothing more than scaly humanoids. Their physical shape notwithstanding, lizardfolk have more in common with iguanas or dragons than they do with humans, dwarves, or elves. Lizardfolk possess an alien and inscrutable mindset, their desires and thoughts driven by a different set of basic principles than those of warm-blooded creatures. Their dismal swamp homes might lie hundreds of miles from the nearest human settlement, but the gap between their way of thinking and that of the smooth-skins is far greater.

Despite their alien outlook, some lizardfolk make an effort to understand and, in their own manner, befriend people of other races. Such lizardfolk make faithful and skilled allies.

Though generally benign, lizardfolks’ standoffish demeanor, staunch rejection of civilization’s “gifts,” and legendary ferocity in battle cause them to be viewed negatively by most humanoids. These traits stem from good reasons, however, as their own slow rate of reproduction is no match for warm-blooded humanoids, and those tribes who don’t defend their wetland territories to the last breath quickly find themselves overwhelmed by the mammalian hordes.

Biology and ethnicities


Most lizardfolk stand 6 to 7 feet tall and weigh 200 to 250 pounds, their powerful muscles covered in scales of gray, green, or brown. Some breeds have short dorsal spikes or brightly colored frills, and all swim well by moving with flicks of their powerful 4-foot-long tails. While completely at home in the water, they breathe air and return to their clustered mound-dwellings to breed and sleep. As their reptilian blood makes them sluggish in the cold, most lizardfolk hunt and work during the day and retreat to their homes at night to curl up with other tribesmen in the shared warmth of large peat fires.

Crests are another distinctive trait of lizardfolk. Males possess large crests that run down from the tops of their heads to between their shoulder blades, while females have two smaller crests running parallel along their heads down to the backs of their necks.

Lizardfolk reproduce sexually. A emale lizardfolk lays a clutch of one to three eggs several weeks after mating and buries them in mud and composted plant matter. These eggs, each just larger than a foot in diameter, absorb water and plant matter to feed the growing embryo inside. The fetus does not develop genitalia until approximately a week before it hatches, which develop in response to the type and amount of nutrients the fetus recieves. A prosperous tribe that has an abundance of compost hatches an equal number of males and females. A less well off tribe that has few scraps to bury its eggs in produces mostly males. This adds valuable hunters to the tribe while reducing the number of needy offspring the next generation hatches.

Irregularly, lizardfolk hatchlings are born with both male and female sex organs. Such offspring often possess female crests, unusually complex brains and correspondingly greater intellects.

Some tribes of lizardfolk have remarkable healing ability, able to grow back severed limbs over the length of several weeks.

Lizardfolk continue to grow throughout their lives, and once every few generations, a tribe is blessed with a lizard king—an individual who for unknown reasons has a lifespan twice the length of his fellows, as well as the strength of arms to keep it. Due to their vastly superior size and experience, these individuals inevitably become chieftains and warriors of the highest caliber. Upon his 100th birthday, a lizard king’s status is officially acknowledged, and he is honored with the presentation of a special weapon, the war trident, reserved exclusively for the use of his kind. These large, two-handed tridents are much heavier than normal (12 pounds) in order to take advantage of their wielders’ great strength.

There are several major lizardfolk ethnicities all over Aednas.

  • Lagarti: Common in many temperate swamps all over the Old World, even Lorasia. They give live birth. Female change color based on their life cycle; Green, yellow, orange.
  • Bimaculato: The Hightide lizardfolk, which range from the Hightide Swamps, to Lake Nhea, west to the coast of the Bluog Seirff Sea, ranging from Aelwyd to Fernigryth's Grave. In ages past, they once ranged as far south as the Brotherhood River. They have green accents on their jaws. The southern Nora lizardfolk are found around the coasts of Fetch Lake down south in Gemcrown Bay, just short of the Lamiyan Lowlands. Also in the north eastern shores of the Devil's Hand Peninsula. They have blue accents on their jaws.
  • Podari: The western tribes of Levetiera, Salvatore and Allure. Brown with black stripes.
  • Agili: Desert tribes of Seruzhar. Brown stripes. These lizardfolk are covered in thick, horny scales, and also bear the unique ability to squirt poison from their mouths.
  • Lovi: Tribes of Morgenia, they live in the rocky uplands. Tend to have dull grey and brown coloring. However, they turn bright blue when threatened. These tribes have adapted the ability to climb agilely on walls like geckos.
  • Protoro: Tribes of Osia. Dry climate. Hibernate during winter. These tribes have the ability to change their skin color instantly and at will, allowing them to blend into their surroundings.
  • There are rumors of lizardfolk in Aremia that are quite larger and stronger than the variety of the Near World.

Behavior


The lizardfolk's reptilian nature comes through not only in their appearance, but also in how they think and act. Lizardfolk experience a more limited emotional life than other humanoids. Like most reptiles, their feelings largely revolve around fear, aggression, and pleasure.

Lizardfolk experience most feelings as detached descriptions of creatures and situations. For example, humans confronted by an angry troll experience fear on a basic level. Their limbs shake, their thinking becomes panicked and jumbled, and they react by instinct. The emotion of fear takes hold and controls their actions. In contrast, lizardfolk see emotions as traits assigned to other creatures, objects, and situations. A lizardfolk doesn't think, "I'm scared." Instead, aggressive, stronger creatures register to the lizardfolk as fearsome beings to be avoided if possible. If such creatures attack, lizardfolk flee, fighting only if cornered. Lizardfolk aren't scared of a troll; instead, they understand that a troll is a fearsome, dangerous creature and react accordingly.

Lizardfolk never become angry in the way others do, but they act with aggression toward creatures that they could defeat in a fight and that can't be dealt with in some other manner. They are aggressive toward prey they want to eat, creatures that want to harm them, and so on.

Pleasurable people and things make life easier for lizardfolk. Pleasurable things should be preserved and protected, sometimes at the cost of the lizardfolk's own safety. The most pleasurable creatures and things are ones that allow lizardfolk to assess more situations as benign rather than fearsome.

Lizardfolk lack meaningful emotional ties to the past. They assess situations based on their current and future utility and importance. Nowhere does this come through as strongly as when lizardfolk deal with the dead. To a lizardfolk, a comrade who dies becomes a potential source of food. That companion might have once been a warrior or hunter, but now the body is just freshly killed meat.

A lizardfolk who lives among other humanoids can, over time, learn to respect other creatures' emotions. The lizardfolk doesn't share those feelings, but instead assesses them in the same clinical manner. Yes, the fallen dwarf might be most useful as a meal, but hacking the body into steaks provokes aggression in the other humanoids and makes them less helpful in battle.

Lizardfolk assess everyone and everything in terms of utility. Art and beauty have little meaning for them. A sharp sword serves a useful and good purpose, while a dull sword is a dead weight without a whetstone. The exception to this is music, which lizardfolk greatly enjoy.

Lizardfolk see little need to plan more than a season or so into the future. This approach allows them to maintain their current level of influence in the world, but it limits their growth. Lizardfolk have no interest in developing writing, making long-term plans, or cultivating other methods to progress beyond their simple existence as hunters and gatherers.

Culture


Lizardfolk have a patriarchal society in which the most powerful member rules the others. Shamans offer advice but rarely become leaders themselves. Survival is the utmost concern of lizardfolk, and a threatened or starving tribe will go to incredible lengths (even committing deeds considered abominable by other humanoids) to ensure its continued existence.

Most tribes live in swamps, but about a third of the population lives in underwater air-filled caves. Local tribes often unite against a greater threat (including hostile lizardfolk tribes) and occasionally make alliances with locathahs or serve more powerful creatures such as nagas or dragons. In isolated areas they survive by fishing, gathering, and scavenging, while those that live near other humanoids make raids for food, supplies, and slaves. A lizardfolk lair has half as many noncombatant hatchlings as adults, and one egg per ten adults.

Language and speech

Lizardfolk can master Common, but their mindset results in a speech pattern distinct from other humanoids. Lizardfolk rarely use metaphors. Their speech is almost always literal. They might pick up idioms, but only with some difficulty.

Names confuse them, unless they are descriptive. They tend to apply their own naming conventions to other creatures using Common words.

Lizardfolk use active verbs to describe the world. A lizardfolk in cold weather might say, "This wind brings cold" rather than "I feel cold." lizardfolk tend to define things in terms of actions, rather than effects.

The lizardfolk version of draconic, simplifies the grammar and pronunciation. The first vowel in all dipthongs are forgotten; AU becomes O. Excepting when used in names, the M, S and T at the end of words are removed. Many Es are replaced with O and Vs (not found in the beginning of a word) are replaced with Bs. CHs become Ks.

Names

Lizardfolk take their names from the Draconic language, though their dialect uses the -is suffix instead of -us when applicable. They use simple descriptives granted by the tribe based on an individual's notable deeds or actions. For example, Securis translates as "axe," a name given to a lizardfolk warrior who defeated an orc and claimed his foe's weapon. A lizardfolk who likes to hide in a stand of reeds before ambushing an animal might be called Viridis, which means "green" to describe how she blends into the foliage.

Lizardfolk make no distinction between male and female in their naming conventions.

Example Names
Armis (armor), Bollis (war), Bostis (animal), Canticis (song), Combustis (burn), Domonis (demon), Draco (dragon), Forris (iron), Gemma (gem), Kalybis (steel), Malleis (hammer), Mons (mountain), Multis (many), Nigris (black), Noctis (night), Occultis (secret), Oculis (eye), Poriculis (danger), Prolis (battle), Scitis (smart), Socuris (axe), Tempastis (storm), Viridis (green), Vograndis (small)

Diet

Religion

Gender roles

Females are smaller than males. Females and children guard the settlement and gather edible roots, plants and fish. Males serve as scouts, hunters and warriors.

Games

Music

Lizardfolk use simple objects and homemade instruments to make improvised music, called Miscellis. These homemade instruments are ordinary objects adapted to or modified for making sound, like the washtub bass, washboard, spoons, bones, stovepipe, and comb and tissue paper.

Economy

Barter system

History


Tribes


Hightide Lizardfolk

The lizardfolk of the Hightide Swamps have a heavy druidic tradition.

Lizardfolk, are divided into four tribes, the Auctumnu, the Hom, the Ver, and the Esta. As the year goes along the tribes change territory, circling the Magnus Arbor in a clockwise fashion with the largest, northern, territory being granted to the tribe whose season corresponds with the current time of year.

Unguis Rex is a title for the leader of the Esta tribe and leader of the lizardfolk nation. The current keeper of that title is Ruberis. His son is Selandine, named by the elves as part of a treaty between the elves and lizardfolk.

Tribes
Name Season Scale color Role Alignment
Auctumnu Autumn Red Killers, soldiers NE
Hom Winter White Priests, keepers of the dead N
Ver Spring Blue Healers, gatherers N
Esta Summer Green Rulers of lacerti, scholars LN

Known lizardfolk


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