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Often known as "King's Dwarves", or "Royal Dwarves", Gold Dwarves are in fact no more royal than the next dwarf. Renowned through the world for their fair, evenhanded rulings, meticulous attention to detail, unwavering loyalty, and judicious attention to law, Gold Dwarves hold a steady following through the realms for an avowed, almost gritty, dedication to justice. Rarely congregated in a single place, Gold Dwarves have become more of a culture than a race. The blood of a dwarf becomes watered down as it seems, no Gold Dwarf wishes to stay at home. Instead, they travel to the court of some fair lord or lady, to serve them in a fashion that springs so naturally to the Dwarf's nature.
Gold Dwarves differ from the Dwarven stereotype in that they are downright civil – quite possibly even flowery. Gold Dwarves value friendships and learning more highly than their earthier cousins, the Shield Dwarves, and have often been known to collect libraries over their lifetimes, all cached away. They fight neither recklessly nor timidly, but with a careful courage and tenacity. Their sense of justice is strongest amongst all dwarves, and even at its worst it rarely turns into a thirst for vengeance.
Gold Dwarves stand only 4 to 4 1/2 feet tall, but they are so broad and compact that they are, on average, almost as heavy as humans. Gold Dwarves are hardly differentiated between the genders, and, much like the lower Dwarf races, the Deep Dwarves, their men and women both grow beards (though Gold Dwarven women are given to shaving). Their skin is typically a pale yellow, or possibly even a genuine golden colour, and their eyes sparkle brightly, usually a hawklike yellow. Their hair is usually blonde, and tends to being well-cared for in the style of a Lawyer's periwig (it is, in fact, believed that this style originated from Gold Dwarves). Gold Dwarves usually tend to their beards carefully, not allowing them to grow too long. Gold Dwarven women tend to shave their beards to keep from disturbing human neighbours, and reserve themselves to polite goatees and sideburns in societies where bearded women are uncommon. Gold Dwarves favour simple styles for their hair, beards, and clothes. Gold Dwarves are considered adults at about age 30, and they can live to be over 200 years old.
Gold Dwarves get along well with almost anyone. The have no particular animosities to hold, nor any great grudges to bear. Any true complaint a Gold Dwarf has is usually settled in a court in a civilised fashion, and Gold Dwarves are almost terrifyingly good at maintaining emotional distance from such cases. In situations where such lawful means are unavailable, Gold Dwarves tend to get out their weapons and fight, but they have no particular racial enemies. Gold Dwarves have established long-term relationships with halflings, who share their somewhat reduced lifespan, and with humans, who gave rise to such beautiful, blossoming, cities in such a short amount of time. Gold Dwarves tend to trust a name rather than a person (though they usually decide on a case-by-case basis), and will usually 'tend' to a family whose grandfather or grandmother they know well, acting as an aged advisor. They dislike chaotic behaviour and persons with a quiet disdain, and coupled with the racial prejudice elves have for dwarves in general, Gold Dwarves and Elves tend to not get along well. Gold Dwarves do their best not to antagonise this situation, but it is there nonetheless.
Gold Dwarves are usually incredibly lawful, and they tend toward good. However, they do their best to distance their lawful sense from their good desires, and as such, tend towards lawful neutrality more than anything else.
Same as Shield Dwarves.
Same as Shield Dwarves.
Same as Shield Dwarves, excepting the Gold Dwarves do not have the great clans. In the eyes of many Dwarven historians, Gold Dwarves simply are another, as-yet-unnamed clan.
A Gold Dwarven adventurer may be motivated by crusading zeal, a love of excitement, or simple greed. As long as his accomplishments bring honour to his clan, his deeds earn him respect and status. Steady acquirement of knowledge in the forms of books and histories can be quite a strange compulsion to a Gold Dwarf.
Gold Dwarven Racial Traits
- +2 Intelligence, -2 Dexterity: Gold Dwarves are refined and polite, but stout and sluggish, and can be indelicate with their hands.
- Medium: As Medium creatures, dwarves have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
- A Gold Dwarf's base speed is 20 feet.
- Darkvision: Gold Dwarves can see in the dark up to 60 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and dwarves can function just fine with no light at all.
- +2 racial bonus on saving throws against poison: Even though not so much so as their brethren, Gold Dwarves are hardy and resistant to toxins.
- +2 racial bonus on saving throws against spells and spell-like effects. Gold Dwarves, through concentrated study, frequently learn the ins and outs of spells.
- +2 racial bonus on Profession (Lawyer) or Knowledge (Law) checks: Gold Dwarves are familiar with many obscure laws and take well to a profession where they can employ them.
- Gold Dwarves always consider all Knowledge skills class skills, with the exception of Gold Dwarves whose first level is that of Barbarian. A Gold Dwarf Barbarian who takes Literacy can then consider all Knowledge skills as class skills, and can take Literacy for only one skill point. Gold Dwarves are well versed, and the ciphers of language leap easily to their understandings.
- Automatic Languages: Common and Dwarven. Bonus Languages: Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Orc, Terran, Halfling, and Undercommon. Gold Dwarves are familiar with the languages of their enemies and of their subterranean allies. Gold Dwarves read quite a bit, however, and gain an extra bonus language regardless of their intelligence modifier.
- Spell-like Abilities: 3/day: Read Magic, Detect Magic, Prestidigitation. Almost all Gold Dwarves have some experience with magic, and these fundamentally simple spells are some of the first learned.
- Favoured Class: Wizard. A multiclass Gold Dwarf's wizard class does not count when determining whether he suffers an XP penalty for multiclassing. (see Experience for Multiclass Characters, PHB, page 56). Gold Dwarven research frequently turns to knowledge of the arcane arts, and it is rare to find a Gold Dwarf without some practical knowledge of spellcraft.
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