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Life Expectancy: 400 yrs. Homeland: Unknown to surface dwellers Average Height: 4'-4'5" Average Weight: 220-250 lbs Preferred Classes: Priest, Spell Blade, Spellfilcher, Warrior, Mage Classes this race can be: Priest, Death Knight, Spell Blade, Monk, Warrior, Mage Preferred Alignment: Chaotic Evil Preferred Weapons: Duergar Wares Aggression Level: Extremely High Intelligence Level: Moderate Magic Rating: High Strength Rating: Normal Weak Against: Light/Holy Magic, Ice Strong Against: Fire, Most Magic, Toxins Related Races: Dwarves Allied Races: None Enemy Races: All other races
Duergar, otherwise known as Deep Dwarves, appear to be emaciated, nasty-looking Dwarves, with complexions ranging from medium to dark gray. Men and women may be born bald, and those who are not usually shave their heads. They prefer to wear drab clothing that helps them blend in to the background. They sometimes wear jewelry, though this too is usually quite dull. They are more intelligent and dexterous than their dwarven cousins, but usually physically weaker and less hardy. Also unlike their surface cousins, they do in fact have the ability to wield magics, though they are strange magics to those who dwell upon the surface. Duergar have infravision, from many years living in the dark, and are very resistant to poison, disease, and mental attacks. Like their dwarven counterparts however, they are very vulnerable to drowning, and dislike water very much. In addition, because of their many years living in near complete darkness, Duergar are very vulnerable to light and attacks based on light. In fact, like Drow, Duergar will even tend to recover from wounds and fatigue faster in darkness than in light.
Most Duergar are Chaotic Evil, being Chaotic by nature and upbringing. Other Dwarves find their ways repulsive. Duergar war on other dwarf races and sometimes even join forces with Orcs and other evil races to raid dwarf strongholds. They frequently compete with the Drow for living space and minerals. Usually the Duergar are bested in such struggles. Consequently, numerous Duergar strongholds have been built in areas rejected by others. In some cases, however, this may have been to their advantage and may have led them to the discovery of hidden subterranean wealth which they could secretly acquire. Duergar speak their own dialect of the Dwarven language and Dwarf Common as native tongues. All Duergar also learn the Trade Tongue (common language) from an early age and many are proficient in Drow, Troll, Orc, and other dark race languages.
Duergar society is very harsh, because of the hostile environment in which they are usually found. Even though their society is evil, they still retain many of the social structures of the Dwarves. One major difference, however, is that they are for the most part a military society. Because their daily lives are a constant struggle for survival, their society revolves entirely around their military, which encompasses every citizen strong enough to wield a weapon. Each clan is organized into a battalion of sorts.
Order of Power
- Clan Leader
- Surface workers (spies, etc.)
The Duergar & Religion
The Duergar follow Cire and the Unnamed Spider Goddess, but under different names.
They visualize Cire as a face in the rock of their subterranean home, and altars to the godhead are always found against rock walls, where a looming face is chiseled out of the stone itself, generally from natural formations that already resemble a face. This face is never the same; like the god's nature, it is never constant. Chaos became a major factor in the Duergar way of life as soon as they began their existence in the Underdark. When the chaos of immense predatory creatures, unstable environments, and ancient evils surrounded them, they had to either embrace it, or die. With the favor of their deity, they have been able to thrive in the harsh conditions, using them as a conditioning process that leaves their people hardened, capable, and often quite mad. Male Duergar Clerics are always Clerics of Cire.
The spider goddess appears to the Duergar as one of their own; a female of large proportions whose stomach is swelled with child. To them, she is the all-mother, readying them for life by driving them through the divine birth canal of their dangerous environment, producing at the last a finished child able to survive life's cruelties, while abruptly aborting those too weak of mind or body to succeed. Female Duergar Clerics are always Clerics of the Unnamed Spider Goddess.
The Duergar's history begins 75,000 years ago, when the clans of the Dwarves first began to form beneath Craughmoyle. For the most part, the clans agreed on things, and were on the whole a simple, happy folk. Two clans, however, both sprung from the legendary dwarf Motsonar, differed from the rest. Like their ancestor, they were smaller and darker than the others, and more prone to violence and terror.
Because of their antisocial tendencies, the other clans banded together, forcing the two renegade clans into exile, far below the earth. There, they were warped by their environment, becoming lean and gray, adapted to a world without sunlight. Their crafts adapted as well; they made do with what resources they found around them, discovering new methods and ideas as they went along. Natural-born miners, they managed to fashion vast networks of tunnels, as well as permanent homes. They were even able to flourish, making a vast empire.
However, they then expanded upward, and met the Drow. A war raged, ending with a decimated Duergar population sealing themselves off from the Drow and retreating back to their lowest levels. Since that time, they've grown again, but cautiously, their population kept in check by the ancient wyrms and monsters that they share their living space with.
All but forgotten in the eons since they were forced below, the Duergar have surfaced again, destroying the elven camps of Sage forest, and establishing an outpost on the remains. Defending it against all comers, the Duergar have made their outpost a permanent addition to the surface world, establishing their race as a force to be reckoned with.
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