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D&D 3E
Low-LA Flying Races? 
18th-Jan-2008 04:24 pm
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Does anyone know of any well-balanced flying races with a low LA other than the Raptorans from RotW? I'm trying to find/make a decent vanilla angel race for a homebrew setting - wings, innate Light ability, etc. All I've found so far is that giving a race another mode of movement (flying/burrowing/etc) should add a +1 LA. I can't figure out what speed or maneuverability this would confer, though.

My best guess so far would be to give the race Fly - 30'(good), Light 2/day (open palm only), and a couple other minor benefits, and call it a +1 LA. While flight and light are ways around quite a few limitations, especially low-level ones, that still seems a little underpowered. Obviously, I've never made a race/template before. Suggestions and constructive criticism are appreciated. :)
Comments 
18th-Jan-2008 10:07 pm (UTC)
Might be worth comparing Avariels from Races of Faerun; they're +3 LA.
19th-Jan-2008 12:37 am (UTC)
That's what I was gonna say. I just didn't have my book next to me. Not exactly "low" LA, but Avariels would have been my suggestion. :P
18th-Jan-2008 10:30 pm (UTC)
Dragonborn from RotD are +0 LA and can get wings at 6th level (in the same manner as Raptorans). Basically if you delay the ability to a higher level its easier to count down the LA.

Also, for what it's worth, the "winged creature" template in Savage Species is +2 LA.

You might drop maneuverability down to average (or even poor) for a +1 LA creature. Good maneuverability seems like it should be more in the +3 or +4 range (along with a bunch of other abilities of course)--just based on the kinds of creatures that are that agile in the air.
19th-Jan-2008 12:02 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I'm beginning to see that the Dragonborn/Raptoran flight progression is about the best way that this could be done.

Maybe it'd be a good idea to take the Dragonborn race, remove the fear immunity and dragon AC bonus, add the light cantrip effect, and call it +0 LA? That'd be basically what I was looking for.

I'd probably also change the mods to -2 INT, +2 CHA to reflect the fact that the race would be low-technology and somewhat more "beautiful". I'm guessing that switch wouldn't modify the LA, though.
19th-Jan-2008 03:44 pm (UTC)
Sounds about right to me. You could also check out YabaTheWhat's Feature Point system at http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=667683 for a pretty decent attempt to quantify LA. The numbers may be off, but a lot of the analysis of different abilities is very good.

Best of luck!
19th-Jan-2008 04:48 am (UTC)
"Winged" from Savage Species is a template that provides wings, a flying speed, +4 Dex and +2 Wisdom, for +2 LA.

I would consider "flight, with wings, at 30', fair maneuverability, counts as running for purposes of exhaustion, and +2 Dex" to be +1 LA. I'd allow feats to buy up the maneuverability or buy down the exhaustion.
19th-Jan-2008 12:52 pm (UTC)
The problem with the flight ability are potential exploits at lower levels. Like hovering in midair and bombing monsters who have no ranged attacks. But I'm sure you know it already.

Raptorans is a great race from this point of view: they have 0 LA, can gracefully glide from 1st level, giving the player a feel of flight, and actually rise in the sky at 5th level without ruining game balance. They also have some other abilities and bonuses (not to mention carefully written cultural background).

So, if I were you, I would modify raptorans race and replace some of their abilities to Light and whatever I would feel appropriate.

But if you want your player characters actually to be able to fly at 1st level, you have to either limit this ability (times per day, drawbacks - or glide) or prepare your game world. In a world where one of the major species freely flies, others would be ready for it: ground-to-air warfare tactics and weapons, "no flight" magically-enforced laws in some cities, flora and fauna protected from aerial attacks, and so on.

Hope that was of any help (and also hope that sound grammatically correct anought, as English is not my native language)...
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