The dwarves are dying, each year more leave the world then are brought into it. For the past one hundred years more and more dwarven children are stillborn and more dwarven females find themselves barren and unable to conceive. The vast dwarven clanholds dug deep into the mountains have begun to fall silent, whole clans have disappeared, lost to time. The dwarves, ever stubborn and proud face this new threat like they do any other, through stoic silence and glorious battle.
If a dwarf cannot be remembered by the offspring he leaves in the world then he will be remembered by deed. Dwarves now wander the world, looking to right wrongs and save the helpless. For a dwarf, to die in glorious battle, his name forever linked to bravery, honor, and unmitigated violence against his foe, is the only way to die. Dwarves are now eternal wanderers, never settling in one place very long and often joining up with adventuring parties to face evils. Most communities welcome dwarves (save for the local alehouses and taverns that have to keep up with their voracious appetite for food and alcohol), knowing that they will root out any ills and danger that the community faces, as long as it is worthy enough of the dwarves attention that is. A vast goblin horde poised to attack is far more glorious then a problem with giant rats after all.
Physical Description: Dwarves average four feet in height, with squat, broad bodies and a thick mass, often averaging 150 lbs for males and 130 for females. Dwarves have a vareity of hair and eye color depending on the clan they originally hailed from and its location. All tend to have skin of earthen tones, usually tan or dirt brown. Male dwarves grow thick facial hair, a sign of pride among their people. It is often a sign of extreme sadness and mourning for a dwarf to shave his beard. Females of the species grow beards as well however they are never as full as a male’s and most will shave it after marriage as a sign of being betrothed (a dwarven female made widow will grow back her beard when ready to take a new mate, and no male would dare approach a female with a shaved face with the offer of courtship). Dwarves live an average of 350 years, though most will never live to see old age.
Why They Adventure: For Dwarves, adventuring is their only way of life. The danger and honor from rooting out threats to the innocent and discovering and vanquishing ancient evils is the only way a dwarf will ever be remembered in their minds. There are very few dwarven settlements any more, instead the dwarves wander the world, adventuring until they finally face the threat that will put them in the annal of history.
Role-Playing Tips: Glory and Honor by combat, protecting those that cannot protect themselves, and being remembered for heroic deeds, these are the things a dwarf lives by. Negotiations with those of evil intent, taking prisoners, and showing mercy to those that would not do the same to you are unthinkable actions to any dwarf. This does not mean a dwarf is a ruthless killer however, he believes in honorable combat, facing a foe head on so they know who it is that brought them down. Dwarves will always protect the innocent and show a great deal of common courtesy and manners, except when a dwarf has too much to drink (which is often, a dwarf has a heard time saying know to good food and good ale).
Dwarves are antsy for action, not wanting to waste time that could be spent rooting out evil. While they understand studying a foe is necessarily, they’d much rather be studying what’s left of it after it has met the end of a sharp axe. Dwarves are not stupid however, they will not blindly rush into rooms or face clearly superior numbers. A dwarf wishes to be remembered by his deeds, and a poison needle trap or being hacked to bits by a dozen kobolds is not the type of memory he wants to pass on.
Remember to play up the stoic nature of dwarves, they are not emotional beings in most situations, though they are known to let loose in combat. A dwarf in combat shouldn’t be standing still swinging his axe, he should be charging opponents, taunting them as he cuts them down and smearing their blood on his armor to unnerve the opponents allies. A dwarf will only retreat if he knows the battle is lost, and many times that is not the same time as his allies. Between combat, a dwarf should talk about potential glory that could gained in upcoming encounters and often grows bored with discussions about why a particular statue is where it is. One thing a dwarf is not, is quiet, be it in battle, after having one too many drinks, or when swearing oaths and speaking of past deeds. A dwarf should never walk around silence, a trait that annoys the elves and many humans to no end.
Rule Changes: Dwarves retain all the features as presented in Labyrinth Lord with the follow exception: Languages: Dwarves speak Common and Dwarven only.