Humanity is best characterized by its tumultuousness and diversity, and human cultures run the gamut from savage but honorable tribes to decadent, devil-worshiping noble families in the most cosmopolitan cities. Human curiosity and ambition often triumph over their predilection for a sedentary lifestyle, and many leave their homes to explore the innumerable forgotten corners of the world or lead mighty armies to conquer their neighbors, simply because they can.
Humans are not native to Therafim, having come to the world in the relatively recent historical past. Humans came to Therafim in great ships, specially crafted to traverse the void between worlds. Where they came from is a mystery even to them, lost in the dusts of time, but when they arrived, they immediately set about trying to adapt the world around them to suit their whims. This allowed humans to lay the groundwork for several powerful realms, but their technology did not last. The highly magical world of Therafim soon began to react with the more complex machines of the humans, and before too long, they began to break down, leaving the humans to rely upon their own devices to survive, on far simpler devices that did not violate the laws of magic. Humans, in the true spirit of adaptation, have also adopted use of the magic that was once their greatest enemy. While they are less powerful and less numerous than when they first arrived, humans are nevertheless quite powerful and very numerous, though both power and population are often regulated by the harsh nature of Therafim.
In the process of forcing their way into the balance of power on Therafim, humans made many enemies, which has caused some lingering racial enmity between humans and the native races of Therafim. While most races will give humans the benefit of the doubt, thanks to their adaptable natures and numerous variations, no wise race really trusts humans to be constant in their behavior. Long-lived races especially have a tendency to trust individual humans, but mistrust the race as a whole, because of their short lifespans, which, in-turn, tends to lead to a short racial memory.
Though there are several distinct groups of humans, these races tend to be closely-related enough that they are all usually just called "humans," and nobody takes offense at the term. Humanity is best characterized by chaos and diversity, and human cultures run the gamut from savage but honorable tribes to decadent, devil-worshiping noble families in the most cosmopolitan cities. Human curiosity and ambition often triumph over their predilection for a sedentary lifestyle, and many leave their homes to explore the innumerable forgotten corners of the world or lead mighty armies to conquer their neighbors, simply because they can.
The physical characteristics of humans are as varied as the world's climes. From the dark-skinned tribesmen of the southern continents to the pale and barbaric raiders of the northern lands, humans possess a wide variety of skin colors, body types, and facial features. However, thanks to the effects of genetic tampering in their distant past, as well as the adaptability of humans in their ability to interbreed with many other races, exotic appearances are not uncommon. Traces of nonhuman ancestry in a human's past could very easily produce a wide variety of skin tones and hair and eye colors not normally found in nature. As examples, blue hair might indicate draconic heritage, green skin might be an indicator of some fey blood somewhere in a human's line, while bestial features might indicate some interbreeding with beastfolk, though, of course, these are only possibilities, and not uncommon with other races as well.
Humans come off to most other races as being rather arrogant, complacent, and convinced of the rightness of their causes and the innocence of their race of any wrongdoing, despite the actions of their ancestors. They also tend to be fairly short-sighted on average, at least compared to the longer-lived races, and many of them have a sense of inferiority compared to the native races of Therafim. Because of this, human nations usually have cool business relations with their nonhuman neighbors, except when faced with foes requiring cooperation to hold off. Since this is frequently the case, humans are able to maintain reasonable relations despite diplomatic faux pas.
Typical humans vary their opinions of other races by region, though it is most common to either find a state of laissez-faire about the differences of races, a wholesale adoration of nonhuman ways, or outright xenophobia and racism. Dwarves and elves are considered the "high" races by most human, and are accorded a measure of respect no matter what political relations might exist. Halflings are often simply allowed to mingle with human society with little trouble, as though they were just small humans, and gnomes are treated somewhere between the respect given to elves and the acceptance given to halflings. Beastfolk and orcbloods tend to inspire more than a little mistrust, and are the most common receivers of racist attitudes, though the more innocuous beastfolk, or the ones that have close ties to humanity, are often given a privileged status, as are the warforged when they live among humans. These races are seldom considered equals, but they are not generally in danger of xenophobic attacks, and can make a living without interference.
Because of the hostility of the world of Therafim, humans are in almost constant danger of having their lands overrun by savage humanoids and various other monsters. Because of this, they often have a surprising degree of cultural cohesion and even racial virtue, which seems to have been lacking in their earlier history.
Humans are fecund, and their drive and numbers often spur them into contact with other races during bouts of territorial expansion and colonization. In many cases, this leads to violence and war, yet humans are also swift to forgive and forge alliances with races who do not try to match or exceed them in violence. Proud, sometimes to the point of arrogance, humans might look upon dwarves as miserly drunkards, elves as flighty fops, halflings as craven thieves, gnomes as twisted maniacs, and half-elves and half-orcs as embarrassments—but the race's diversity among its own members also makes humans quite adept at accepting others for what they are.
- Human characters get a +2 bonus to one ability score of their choice at creation to represent their varied nature.
- Medium: Humans are Medium creatures and have no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
- Normal Speed: Humans have a base speed of 30 feet.
- Bonus Feat: Humans select one extra feat at 1st level.
- Skilled: Humans gain an additional four skill points at first level, and an additional one at every level after.
- Languages: Humans begin play speaking Common. Humans with high Intelligence scores can choose any languages they want (except secret languages, such as Druidic).