Balemorph (3.5e Race)

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Author: Eiji-kun (talk)
Date Created: 5-17-14
Status: Complete
Editing: Clarity edits only please
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Magic is a dangerous thing. It can summon fire from nowhere, bend time and space, and transmute creatures into different things. One dangerous example is the baleful polymorph spell, a dangerous curse which can leave someone forever a mere animal and can rob them even of their mind. Usually these magics have a binary effect; they either work or they do not. But every so often in a rare case a creature both succeeds and fails, and in the end becomes something entirely different. Balemorphs are the result of botched baleful polymorphs which only succeed into transforming them into a new creature, half animal and half humanoid. Their original past histories are lost, but their sentience is retained.


The creation of a balemorph often leaves them confused and lost. They are "born" with only vague memories of a past life with only their basic knowledge and languages intact. They are aware they used to be a person who had come under a spell, but the initial magic has left them and turned them into this. As a result many have a sense of confusion or revenge with no purpose, becoming frustrated or easily swayed by others until they can develop a new personality of their own.

Those who have developed personality may later discover their old self. How they react may depend on how their new personality conflicts with the old, but many do not wish to go back to what they were. Their personalities are now their own, and regardless there is no known way of reverting the magic. Though baleful polymorph is permanent, the process which creates a balemorph causes the curse to become an instantaneous effect. Only powerful magics such as wish offer the opportunity to restore their old selves.

Physical Description[edit]

A balemorph appears as an animal with 1 HD or less as per baleful polymorph, and this is their true form to the world. However they are able to assume humanoid form which closely resembles their original forms. These humanoid forms usually have at least one oddity revealing their animal nature, such as cat ears, a dog's tail, snake scales, and so forth. Balemorphs can only be created out of humanoid creatures, and though they may resemble a human or halfling or dwarf they no longer have the same racial abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. They are a creature all of their own.

Balemorphs breed true with each other, producing a balemorph with the animal form of one of the parents. Breeding with other humanoids results in normal humanoid children of the appropriate type.


Balemorphs can easily hide within their original societies and most don't even realize they're different. Those that discover their abnormality may consider it a curse, and some fear they are some manner of lycanthrope. For this reason, balemorphs rarely reveal themselves and they are a rare enough phenomena that few are aware that their condition is not unique.


Balemorphs can be of any alignment, but because they start out as blank slates a great number trend towards true neutral.


Balemorphs have the lands and behavior of their initial starting race.


Balemorphs may pick up the religion of their original base race, but since they start out as blank slates they may very well deviate.


Balemorphs speak Common and the language of their animal type (such as Feline for cats).


Balemorphs may or may not remember their original name, and often if they do remember they recall a warped or corrupted version of their original name. If they do not recall a name, they often adopt the nicknames others grant them.

Racial Traits[edit]

The following racial traits defines the balemorph's humanoid form and assumes a medium humanoid. Small humanoids are also possible; reduce speed to 20 ft, -2 Strength, and +2 Dexterity.

  • +2 to any attribute: Balemorphs can be made of nearly any creature, and some excel in strength, or wisdom, or other abilities as their original form. The selected ability bonus applies to both their humanoid and animal forms.
  • Magical Beast (Shapechanger): Balemorphs are considered shapechanging magical beasts. However, they also count as humanoid creatures as well (such as for favored enemy, or against spells which effect humanoids) and retain their humanoid racial subtypes, if any. For example a half-orc balemorph would be a Magical Beast (Human, Orc) and is subject to enlarge person as well as favored enemy Magical Beast. 
  • Medium: As a Medium creature, a balemorph has no special bonuses or penalties due to its size.
  • Balemorph base land speed is 30 feet.  
  • Low-Light Vision: A balemorph can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. She retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions. 
  • Animal Form (Ex): Choose an animal under 1 HD (as per baleful polymorph). You may transform between this animal and humanoid forms up to 1/day per character level with unlimited duration as a standard action. Transforming into an animal behaves as wild shape, including the inability to speak in animal form and what happens to your items when changing forms. You retain your own Constitution and mental ability scores. If you run out of daily transformations you will be stuck in your current form until you rest for 8 hours. 
  • Feral Mind (Ex): If you come under the effect of a mind-affecting effect you may use an immediate action to negate it and revert to animal form (if not already in animal form). Your intelligence drops down to what is normal for the animal and you become unable to transform between humanoid and animal forms or restore your normal intelligence until you rest for 8 hours. You retain your personality, alignment, and behavior within the limitations of your new intelligence. 
  • Polymorph Mastery (Ex): Whenever you come under a beneficial transmutation effect, the effect is automatically extended as per Extend Spell. This does not stack with Extend Spell. 
  • Polymorph Resistance (Ex): You have a +4 bous on saving throws against polymorph and petrification effects. You are immune to the effect of baleful polymorph.
  • Automatic Languages: Common. They may also speak to animals of their kind (such as dogs to other canines, or cats to other felines).
  • Bonus Languages: Any
  • Favored Class: Any
  • Level Adjustment: +0
  • Effective Character Level: 1

Vital Statistics[edit]

Table: Balemorph Random Starting Ages
Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
As base race. years +As base race. +As base race. +As base race.
Table: Balemorph Aging Effects
Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
As base race. years As base race. years As base race. years +As base race. years
  1. At middle age, −1 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  2. At old age, −2 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  3. At venerable age, −3 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
Table: Balemorph Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male As base race. +As base race. As base race. lb. × (As base race.) lb.
Female As base race. +As base race. As base race. lb. × (As base race.) lb.

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Eiji-kun's Homebrew (5598 Articles)
Facts about "Balemorph (3.5e Race)"
AuthorEiji-kun +
Effective Character Level1 +
Favored ClassAny +
Identifier3.5e Race +
Level Adjustment0 +
Racial Ability Adjustments+2 Any Attribute +
RatingUndiscussed +
SizeMedium +
SubtypeShapechanger +
SummaryBalemorphs are the result of botched baleful polymorphs which only succeed into transforming them into a new creature, half animal and half humanoid. +
TitleBalemorph +
TypeMagical Beast +