Once dwarves were the most populous peoples of the Empire. The Dwarven Lords kept their northern cities and large tracts of the land around them under guard from other races, but eventually fell to incursions from the Barbarian Lord and the Diabolist. Despite this, they have always been peaceably minded, if a little standoffish, towards other races. They only really started integrating when the Elven Lord and Lady asked for their help to defeat the Dragon.
Dwarves are stocky, and powerfully muscled. They have finely lined faces, and the colour of their eyes is always deep and bright. Dwarven hair can be any human colour, although it is coarse and grows thickly on the scalp and face. Dwarven women do not grow beards, despite slurs to the contrary. Their thick luxurious hair is the envy of women from other races, and often grows long enough to reach the floor.
Dwarves have enhanced aesthetic, creative, and artistic faculties. They put the thought of all that they are into whatever they craft. They are master artists, craftsmen, and smiths, particularly with respect to working stone.
Dwarves embrace whatever work they engage in with joy, often giving themselves over to a favorite cause or task. They are a stoic, single-minded people to whom compromise doesn’t come easy. Most dwarves will become commitment to a single task which is called a dwarf’s focus. A dwarf will work to complete his focus above all else, for the compulsion to succeed is built into his very nature. If a dwarf dies without completing his focus, the need remains so strong that the dwarf returns as an undead banshee to finish the task that drives him. Once a dwarf completes the focus task, they will sometimes take a break but will often rededicate themselves to a new task. While there is a tendency to associate dwarves with greed, this is a false assumption as what is more accurate is that they are devoted to a focus that indirectly involves the acquisition of wealth and the appearance of greed is just their focus causing them to be incredibly intent in succeeding at their focus at all costs. Sometimes a focus will be a short-term focus such as creating a finely crafted axe or protecting the village from the attacking bandits; other times the focus will be more long-term such as constructing a new village for his clan or becoming a powerful necromancer capable of resurrecting his dead family from the grave.
The stat block listed in the PH is for a typical dwarf, for a PC use the following stat block.
|All PCs are exceptional||All non-human races +2 to two stats of choice, regardless of subrace. This replaces all stat bonuses listed for each race. [NPC dwarves have +2 to Con and Strength]|
|Age||Dwarves reach adulthood in their late teens and live less than a century. (see note on Fey Time)|
|Alignment||Dwarves tend toward no particular alignment. The best and worst are found among them.|
|Size||Dwarves stand between 4 and 5 feet tall and average about 150 pounds. Your size is Medium.|
|Speed||Your base walking speed is 25 feet. Your speed is not reduced by wearing heavy armor.|
|Darkvision||Whether it is left over from your time in the fey lands or a remnant of your race having lived underground in ages past, you have superior vision in dark and dim conditions. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as it it were dim light. You can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.|
|Tool Proficiency||Free background in a craft or skill (by any name that feels fun, engaging, and correct for your character’s story) relating to smithing, crafting, or artistry at a bonus equal to your proficiency bonus|
|Dwarven Resilience||You have advantage on saving throws against poison, and you have resistance against any poison damage.|
|Dwaven Focus||When defining a Dwarven Focus it must meet the following criteria: 1) it must be constructive (you can take destructive actions to fulfill it but the end goal must be constructive) [i.e. “kill the orcs” is not constructive but “protect my family from the orcs” is]; 2) it must help someone other than the dwarf (it can help the dwarf as well, but the primary recipeient must be someone other than the dwarf); 3) it must take at least 1 week to complete the task (this can be an estimate and if it takes less that is fine, but it must be a realistic estimate that it will last a week or more); 4) it must be relatively simple (it can be stated in about 10 words or less).
You gain Advantage on Saves and Ability checks related to your focus. If you are forced to give up your focus for any reason (for example your focus was to protect your family from the orcs and now you family is dead), you suffer Disadvantage on Saves and Ability checks for one week; during this time you are despondent and cannot pick a new focus.
|Language||You can speak, read, and write Common and Dwarvish. Dwarvish is full of hard consonants and guttural sounds, and those characteristics spill over into whatever other language a dwarf might speak.|
Urban dwarves, sometimes called hill dwarves, are the most commonly encountered dwarves. As an urban dwarf, you have keen senses, deep intuition, and remarkable resilience.
|Dwarven Toughness||Your hit point maximum increases by 1, and it increases by 1 every time you gain a level.|
|Keen Senses||Add your proficiency bonus to any checks related to using your senses.|
War dwarves tend to live in their mountain homes, though they can be found outside their clanfasts. When they are found outside their homes, they are usually just traveling and it is a rare site to find a war dwarf who lives away from their mountain homes. As a war dwarf, you’re strong and hardy, accustomed to a difficult life in rugged terrain. You’re probably on the tall side (for a dwarf), and tend toward lighter coloration.
|Dwarven Armor Training||You have proficiency with all armors.|
|Dwarven Weapon Training||You are proficient with all axes and hammers.|
|Stonecutting||Free background at +6 “Dwarves are Master Stonecutters”|
|Rugged Survivalist||You are accustomed to a difficult life in rugged terrain. You have the Rugged Survivalist background (by any name that feels fun, engaging, and correct for your character’s story) at your proficiency bonus.|
Fey Dwarves come from the faerie lands and are physically similar to war dwarves but typically live for hundreds of years or more.They are solid and enduring like the mountains they love, weathering the passage o f centuries with stoic
endurance and little change. They respect the traditions of their clans, tracing their ancestry back to the founding of their most ancient strongholds in the youth of the world, and don’t abandon those traditions lightly. Part of those traditions is devotion to the gods, who uphold the dwarven ideals of industrious labor, skill in battle, and devotion to the forge. A fey dwarf is interested in gold, glory, and the gods (and most likely in that order). Most fey dwarves are lawful, believing firmly in the benefits of a well-ordered society. They tend toward good as well, with a strong sense of fair play and a belief that everyone deserves to share in the benefits of a just order.