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Growing from tiny podelets, podes are capable of great physiological change, and can attain truly prodigious girth. While their upper halves resemble that of humanoids, the lower half of their bodies have between 8 and 10 tentacles. Though they have little in the way of hair, what they do have is usually the same color as their rubbery skin, which ranges from inky black to fish-belly white and nearly every color in-between.

Pode family life starts in a challenging fashion, with pode parents producing dozens of eggs that hatch into podelets, which then swim off to grow, eat, and get eaten over the next 20 years. At the end of this time, something stirs within them, an emptiness that can only be filled by others of their kind. The juvenile podes, now known as podesti, form loose groups called consortiums and start to seek out their adult counterparts. The podesti observe and mimick the actions of their elders, who leave out food for them but otherwise do not acknowledge the adolescents.

Over the course of the next decade the podesti hone their speech and knowledge amongst themselves until they finally come forward and announce their names to the adults, whereupon they become full members of pode society. For this reason, a pode’s name is highly personalized and is usually representative of their values and interests, as well as the older pode they most admire.


Pode Traits

Characters with the pode heritage share a variety of traits. 

Age. Podes reach adulthood at age 30 and can live up to 160 years.

Size. Podes vary greatly in size and can be between 3 and 12 feet tall and weigh between 45 and 600 pounds Your size is your choice of Small or Medium (see Pode Gifts below).

Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet. You also have a swim speed of 30 feet.

Handy Tentacles. The tentacles of your lower body are surprisingly strong and dexterous. These tentacles have a reach of 5 feet and you may, as an action, use them to manipulate an object, including loading and unloading projectile weapons, open an unlocked container or door, or stow or retrieve items from an unlocked container. Your tentacles can push, drag, or lift a weight in pounds up to your Strength score.

However, these tentacles mean you cannot wear regular footwear, such as boots and other shoes.

Soft-Bodied. You can squeeze through openings and passages one size category smaller than normal without incurring penalties.

Vacuum Lung. You can hold your breath for up to 15 minutes.

Pode Gifts 

In addition to the traits found in your pode heritage, select one of the following gifts

Adult Pode

What younger podes lack in physical size, they make up for with their deft movements. You gain the following traits:

Rapid Growth. Unlike many heritages, podes continue to grow once they reach adulthood. The metaphorical growth that comes with adventuring can speed this physical change. At 5th level you may, if you choose, undergo a growth spurt and swap all the traits in this gift for those of Adult Pode. Alternately, you may delay this growth until a later level up.

Size. Your size is Small.

Squirmy. You gain an expertise die on saving throws to avoid being grappled .

Teeny-Tiny Tentacles. The tips of your tentacles are so tiny that they fit inside most mechanisms. You are always considered equipped with thieves’ tools and are proficient in their use. You also gain an expertise die to checks to use your tentacles in this way. At the Narrator’s discretion, this trait may allow you to perform tasks not covered by the Handy Tentacles trait, such as Sleight of Hand checks, with your tentacles.

Mature Pode

While older podes lose the advantages of their smaller kin, they have their own gifts. You gain the following traits.

Color Change. As a bonus action, you may change your appearance to match your surroundings. While in this environment, you gain an expertise die on Stealth checks for one minute, at which point you return to your normal coloration. You may also return to your normal coloration without spending an action.

Ink Cloud. As an action, you may spray noxious black ink into a 20 feet cone in front of you. Underwater, the area is considered heavily obscured (see Vision and Light in Chapter 7: Adventuring, Adventurer’s Guide) for one minute. Out of water, this area lasts for a number of rounds equal to your Constitution modifier and counts as
difficult terrain . Each creature that starts its turn in it or moves into it must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw or fall prone. The DC for this saving throw equals 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus. Once you have used ability a number of times equal to your Constitution modifier, you can’t use it again until you have finished a long rest .

Size. Your size is Medium

Sucker Grip. You gain expertise die to your maneuver DC when a creature is attempting to resist you performing the Grab On basic maneuver, and you gain an expertise die to your saving throw when resisting an attempt to disarm you using the Disarm basic maneuver.

Pode Paragon

When you reach 10th level you become a metaphorical—and potentially literal—titan among pode. If your size is Medium, you can choose to gain mass equal to that of an elder pode and become Large size. You can use two-handed or heavy melee weapons sized for Medium creatures with one hand, but may not use non-magical weapons with the ranged property or other equipment (subject to the Narrator’s discretion) unless they are specially crafted for you. The price of these specially crafted items is that of the original cost multiplied by four. For example, a suit of armor worth 25 gold would cost 100 gold if it were specially-crafted. Magic items adjust their size as normal. You now require 2 Supply per day to benefit from a long rest in a haven. Your carrying capacity, including for Supply and bulky items, is doubled. Alternately, you may delay this growth until a later level up.

In addition, you gain one of the following paragon gifts.

Kraken Strength

Prerequisite: Large size

You gain an expertise die in attempts to grapple and are considered proficient with improvised weapons. As a bonus action, you may now attempt to grapple a creature within 5 feet of you with your tentacles, but this reduces your speed to zero. Upon successfully grappling a creature one or more Size categories smaller than you, you may use it as an improvised weapon as bonus action.

You deal damage based upon the size category of the grappled creature. The creature used in this way also receives damage equal to the amount and type dealt. The creature is considered to be sharing your space whilst being wielded in this way until it escapes your grapple, or dies, and is then moved to a space adjacent to you of its choice. You may grapple another creature with your humanoid arms whilst you are doing this and may target it with a creature grappled by your tentacles.

Creatures as Improvised Weapons

Size Damage
Tiny 1 + Strength Modifier
Small/Medium 1d6 + Strength modifier
Large 1d8 + Strength Modifier

Superior Tentacles

Your tentacles can be used as natural weapons that deal magical bludgeoning damage equal to 2d6 + your choice of your Strength of Dexterity modifier. You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls made with this natural weapon.

Pode Culture

While you can choose any culture for your pode character, the following cultures are linked closely with this heritage: collegiate , cosmopolitan , imperial , steamforged .