Drow (Dark Elves)

This race is restricted and must be applied for


In long ages past, a branch of the moon elven subrace living in the jungles that once covered the land of Godscar grew too proud, too certain of their manifest destiny. They listened to the subtle whispering of a dark goddess and forsook the ways of the elven race, choosing instead the path of power and conquest, gathering strength and power through blood sacrifice and forbidden rites. Soon they and their new goddess sought to strike at the elves and their shining deity directly. This attempt failed, and these fallen elves, now known as the drow, or dark elves, were almost wiped out, the jungles of Godscar blighted, leaving behind the wasteland found in that blighted land to this day. The survivors descended into the Underdark, and there they began to found cities, far from the prying eyes of their hated surface-dwelling kin.

Their personalities strangely compelling, the drow are able to subjugate those with weaker wills simply with their commanding, darkly regal presences. Drow tend to look down on males of all races, but their own especially. As a race, they are cunning, duplicitous and deadly. Kindness is almost unheard-of in normal drow society, and a typical drow is desperately determined to survive at any costs, preferably at the expense of others.

This extreme of wickedness among the drow also tends to produce members of the race with quite extreme views on the opposite end of the spectrum. Drow who are able to escape the evil of their society often reject their former culture completely, and they feel an extreme need to demonstrate their goodness to others and especially to themselves. These outcast drow tend to be paragons of virtue, and their children, should they manage to have any, tend to be more like other subraces of elf or even humans in behavior, rather than like drow.

Physical Description
Drow characters are nimble and manipulative, but share surface Elves' comparative frailty and slight frames. They are notably shorter than humans, their average height being about 5' for females and 4'11" for males, their smaller statures helping them to maneuver well in the tunnels of the Underdark. Drow are characterized by white or silver hair, though a few can have hair of fiery red, flowing blue, or stunning purple. Unlike other elves, drow may very rarely have a very light amount of hair on their bodies, besides on the tops of their heads. Males are not unknown to grow mustaches (though not beards), and body hair is sometimes present in a silk-fine dusting. They are marked most easily by their obsidian black skin. Their eyes are usually red, violet or yellow in darkness and green, grey, or violet in normal light.

About Drow
Drow society is based upon violence, murder, cunning, and the philosophy that only the strong survive (though in Drow tongue, a quirk of the language creates a reversal of cause-and-effect; more correctly, it can be translated as "those who survive are strong"). Hence, most Drow plot endlessly to murder or otherwise incapacitate their rivals and enemy Drow using deceit and betrayal. Drow, particularly in higher positions, are constantly wary of assassins and the like. One of the quirks of this constant infighting is the relatively short lifespan of the average Drow. While being just as long lived as their surface cousins, living as long as a thousand years; you are very unlikely to meet an elderly Drow. Consequently, they are the only race of Elves that matches the fertility of 'lesser' races, such as humans. Their society, as a whole, is seemingly nonviable. The only reason they do not murder themselves to extinction is by the will of their dark goddess, working primarily through her clergy. This goddess does not tolerate any Drow that threaten to bring down her society, and the clergy make certain that perpetrators cease their destructive actions by either threatening or killing them, depending on her mood and how likely it is to be a successful deterrent.

The Drow are well adapted to seeing in the dark, and they loathe, are terrified of, and are easily blinded by the light of the surface. Some magic weapons, armor, and various other items of the Drow disintegrate on contact with sunlight.

Most Drow societies will wage war with almost any surface race and other subterranean races, such as Mind Flayers, Duergar, Dwarves, and Orcs, for spoils and territory. Although they also trade widely in times of peace and operate several trade routes through the Underdark, their trade is mostly insular, with rare exceptions such as with the city of Avalon, which welcomes all comers.

Drow society is primarily matriarchal, with priestesses of their evil goddess in the highest seats of power. Males are considered inferior to females within Drow society, and while some males may be respected if they are powerful Wizards, they are never allowed to rule. Males who do not wish to be forced under such subjugation any longer may escape, as may those who seek freedom from the wicked theocracy of the drow cities. These escapees are generally required to become adventurers just to survive, since the passage through the Underdark to the relative safety from their kin is perilous indeed.


  • Require 15 REP to play.
  • +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma, -2 Constitution: Drow characters are nimble and manipulative.
  • Medium: Drow have no bonuses or penalties due to their size
  • Normal Speed: A Drow's base land speed is 30 feet
  • Darkvision: A Drow has darkvision out to 120 feet
  • Drow Immunities: Drow are immune to magic sleep effects and get a +2 racial saving throw bonus against enchantment spells and effects.
  • Keen Senses: Drow receive a +2 racial bonus on Listen, Spot and Search skill checks.
  • Light Blindness: Abrupt exposure to bright light (such as sunlight or a daylight spell) blinds drow for 1 round. In subsequent rounds, the drow are dazzled (–1 penalty on attack rolls, Search checks, and Spot checks) as long as they remain in the affected area.
  • Spell Resistance: A Drow has spell resistance equal to 6 + character level
  • Poison Use: A Drow may handle poisons without risk of poisoning himself.
  • Spell-like Abilities: A Drow can cast dancing lights, darkness, and faerie fire each once per day, using his total character level as his caster level.
  • Weapon Proficiency: A Drow receives Martial Weapon Proficiency (Rapier), Martial Weapon Proficiency (Short Sword), and Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Hand Crossbow) as bonus feats.
  • Automatic Languages: Common, Sylvan (Drow Dialect), and Undercommon. Bonus Languages: Abyssal, Aquan, Draconic, Drow Sign Language, Goblin

Special Racial Feat
Light-Hardened (Racial)
Some creatures, especially beings that normally live in the Underdark, have a hard time dealing with the raw, merciless light of the surface world. Other creatures, most notably undead, actually take damage from such exposure, and from related effects. However, it is possible for many of these creatures to overcome their weakness to light through careful, steady doses of exposure. While these methods of gradual exposure can be grueling, and even potentially deadly in some instances, those who make it through the training process are hardened against what was once a great danger.

Prerequisites: Light-related weakness.

Benefit: Creatures with light sensitivity (such as orcs) are able to function in sunlight without any penalties. Creatures that are actually damaged by sunlight (such as vampires) suffer only half the effects, or are able to last twice as long if there is a time duration of survival listed rather than a damage amount, and do not suffer any movement penalties for exposure.