Life Expectancy: 4000 plus years. Homeland: The Adrasteia Realm Average Height: 6'5" to 7'5" Average Weight: varies depending on base race Preferred Classes: Any Classes this race can be: Any Preferred Alignment: Any Preferred Weapons: Claws, fangs Aggression Level: High Intelligence Level: Varies depending on age and experience Magic Rating: Low Strength Rating: High Weak Against: Silver, vampire blood. Strong Against: Melee, psychological attack Related Races: None Allied Races: Humans Enemy Races: Vampire
The curse of lycanthropy fundamentally changes the genetic structure of the base race affected, and tends to be more prevalent among the humanoid species such as elves and humans. Inherited as a divine punishment from the lesser god Wraith, the virus triggers the ability on the part of the infected to physically transform into a hybridized form of the base race and a canine species, or to completely transform into the natural form of a canine species, typically a wolf. In either form, the virus grants the ability of the lycan to regenerate or heal from physical damage quickly, an ability that is strengthened or weakened to the degree that they have fed on raw meat and blood.
In hybrid form, lycans maintain the capability for upright , two legged stance, while their bodies are overgrown with fur to varying degrees of thickness. Their heads elongate to muzzles and their ears often extend to furred tips, while hands and feet often become paw like, with nails that extend into claws. It is typical for a hybrid shift to result in an additional 50 to 75 pounds of muscle to the skeletal frame. Hybrid lycans tend to average a full foot to two feet taller than the humanoid form of the base race.
In natural form, lycans appear to all intents and purposes to be little more than over sized canines. They are however, larger, stronger and faster than their natural brethren, and can run and hunt with the sentient awareness of their base race intelligence. In this form the weight of the lycan is often close to to the weight of the individual in their base race form, or a little lighter.
The transformation from a humanoid form to lycan form, is essentially one that subsumes the sentience of reason to a feral nature. A man becomes a beast. Lycans are instinctual creatures, predatory, reactionary, aggressive and territorial. While mature lycans are unlikely to attack without provocation, newly turned or otherwise inexperienced lycans might be susceptible to blood lust or rage killing. It is best to assume that a lycan has limited ability for self control in an encounter, and behave accordingly.
The degree to which a lycan is aware of its base identity in either form is dependent on age and experience. Older lycans tend to have a greater ease and control of their feral nature and ability to shift and communicate regardless of form. New bloods tend to be wilder, less controllable and more susceptible to the pull of the moons.
Lycans tend to prefer the support of a family or pack structure, and value a co-dependent existence in which the roles in the pack community are clearly defined, and often established by strength trail. The alpha, beta and delta pair, often mated pairs but necessarily so, lead and defend the pack against external threat, while lycans of subordinate ranks fill other roles that may range from sentinel guards, to hunter providers. Often, there exists a weakling or runt in the pack, identified as the omega, and this pack member functions as a focus within the community for the release on internal tensions and aggression.
In humanoid form, pack members tend to live and interact socially with each other to a fairly intimate degree, often feeling a sense of collective responsibility for the care and raising of pack young as well as an instinctual desire to protect each others interests against the influence of perceived threats.
In natural form, lycan packs tend to create a separate den, or otherwise gather in a protected, enclosed area that establishes the heart of their territory, around which they roam, hunt, play and reproduce freely in natural or hybrid form.
When pack sizes get too large to be sustained by a single territory they often divide, one of the dominant pairings assuming the role of alpha pair to the newer, smaller pack which typically will move beyond the territory of the first to establish their own den and territory.
Outside of packs, singular rogue wolves, typically young males, can live and hunt. Generally they can only do so when permitted by the pack wolves of the territory they infringe.
While lycans in their natural or feral hybrid forms are not typically self aware to the degree that they are capable of worship, the race a a whole is the favored race of the Goddess Nyx, the God of the Moon and of dreams. She has been known to visit the cursed ones in their dreams while they rest in their humanoid forms, and perceives them as her children. The children of the Moon.
The progenitor of the curse that birthed the race, the Goddess Wraith, has also been known to manifest to the lycan population on occasion, although her interaction is believed to stir awake the more feral and beastly aspects of their natures, driving their sentience underground.
The degree to which individual lycans might revere Nyx or Wraith in turn, is a matter of personal choice. As is their choice to revere any other God to whom they might have a connection because of personal or racial history in their humanoid forms.