However important a part of humanity the Heartlanders consider themselves to be, they do not extend this sentiment to the Peasantry. Peasants are considered rowdy, stupid folk, good only for working in the fields or toiling away at simple trades.
The peasantry of the Heartlands tends towards shortness of build compared to the aristocracy, though this is often as much to do with malnutrition as genetics. Supposedly, their hair is brown, though as many nobles are known to say, it’s not as if peasants are ever clean enough for one to tell. The peasants favour simple garb, often in fairly drab colours.
The peasants fill the lowest rung of Heartlander society. To them are given the physical tasks such as agriculture, construction and fishing. The luckier peasants are able to earn better pay as soldiers or craftsmen, while the least fortunate turn to begging or theft. Heartland society follows the Feudal system, which from the peasant’s point of view entails various obligations to their “betters”.
The peasants serve their aristocratic masters, willingly or otherwise, and have fairly little contact with outsiders. Occasionally they may see Flatlands Nomads or Dwarves come to trade in their cities, but for the most part, heartland peasants have little experience of the rest of the world.
Alignment and Religion
Peasants are much less inclined to be lawful than their aristocratic masters, and span the whole range of alignments. They are often very religious – even superstitious – and devotedly revere the various spirits of their homelands. The peasants tend more toward the lesser spirits, leaving the worship of great wind, mountain and dragon spirits to the nobility.
It’s not hard to imagine why a peasant might wish to leave his homeland. The question is rather how one can go about it. Those in the northernmost villages find it easiest to slip away, and those from coastal regions may have chances to board ships. Some peasants flee the heartlands after committing crimes against their overlords, while others simply wish to see more of the world.
An, Bo, Bu, Fu, Go, Ko, No, Po, Pu, Ri, Ru.
Ai, Au, Ea, Ei, Iu, Mi, Mu, Na, Ni, Nu, Oa.
- Ability Score Racial Traits: Human characters gain a +2 racial bonus to one ability score of their choice at creation to represent their varied nature.
- Size: Humans are Medium creatures and thus receive no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
- Base Speed: Humans have a base speed of 30 feet.
- Languages: Humans begin play speaking Common. Humans with high Intelligence scores can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic). See the Linguistics skill page for more information about these languages.
- Bonus Feat: Humans select one extra feat at 1st level.
- Heart of the Slums: Peasants who eke out a life in a city’s teeming slums must be quick and clever. They gain a +2 racial bonus on Sleight of Hand and Stealth checks, and a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks in urban and underground settings. In addition, they may roll twice when saving against disease, taking the better roll.
- Rogue: Many of the most successful Peasant adventurers began as thieves or outlaws. Alternate Favoured Class Benefit: +1/6 of a new Rogue Talent.
- Ninja: The ninja is the classic hero of the oppressed peasantry, always opposed to the nobles in folklore. Alternate Favoured Class Benefit: Add +1/4 to the ninja’s ki pool.
- Wilder: The constant oppression of the peasants can sometimes trigger latent psionic abilities. Alternate Favoured Class Benefit: +1 Power Point.
- Criminal: More than a few peasants either choose or are forced into a life of crime.
- Gladiator: Some peasants earn their keep by brawling in the streets, or in the fighting pits.
- Pauper: Poverty is rife among the peasantry, especially in the cities.
- Labourer: If there’s one thing the nobles consider peasants good for, it’s manual labour.
- Military: Life as a guardsman or man-at-arms is one of the better jobs peasants can aspire to.
- Rural: Many peasants work on farmsteads in the mountain valleys.
- Servant: Most nobles keep at least one peasant servant in their household.
Shadow: A peasant Ninja with the stealthy feat would be very difficult to spot – perfect for a tactically executed sneak attack.
Prizefighter: A peasant with the Gladiator occupation might have made a living beating opponents who never suspected he was a Psychic Warrior following the brawler path, able to lend psychic strength to his fists.
Cloak and Dagger: Two peasant urchins; the boy uses his Wilder powers to dim lights and distract guards, allowing his sister the Rogue to sneak up and surprise them.