Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Totems: Bear, Part I

Ways of the Bear
* Grow large with much eating and rest
* Protect yourself and your loved ones, being terrifying when need be

* Keep to the old ways
Eschew non-bearish things, especially non-bear shamanic magic!

Followers of Bear Totems
Special: The bear is honored by shamans and barbarians, though other cleric-types and fighters can do so as well. 
Associated Divinities: Thor, Artio (Celtic), Artemis (Callisto), Perun, Mielikki, Ukko
Allowed Weapons: Club, hammer, axe, dagger
Allowed Armor: Bear hide and shield or lighter (and often little else)
Spirit of the Bear: Those who follow the bear will gain a random special ability for every odd level they have. See the wolf totem (link) for specifics, noting that those who access the bear's power must also make a Wisdom check first, as well as roll for totemic side-effects (see Part II) and even totem tests at times.

Bear Shamans (roll 1d6)
1. Bear-skin: Assume the form of a black bear, becoming one in all ways but cognition for up to 1d3 rounds per level per day. The transformation takes 1d3 rounds, but doesn't count towards the duration limit. At 5th level, they can assume the form of a grizzly bear instead, and at 9th level, a cave or werebear.
2. Spirit Bear-skin: Can project their spirit as an ethereal bear. The shaman's body is left behind for the duration, helpless and comatose. Otherwise treat as #1 above, along with the advantages discussed in #4 below.
3. Ursine Aspect: Gain either a black bear's bite attack, hug or climbing ability, superior sense of smell, hearing, or hit points for up to 1d3 rounds per level per day. At 5th level, two can be used at once or one of the grizzly bear's can be used (they can't climb though). At 9th level, three of the black bear's or two of the grizzly's can be used at once.
4. Bear Guardian Spirit: Call upon an ethereal bear ally to fight other spirits, scout an area, or even detect other supernatural forces. It will obey for up to 1d3 rounds per level per day. At 5th level, it can be an ethereal grizzly bear instead, and at 9th level, an ethereal cave or werebear.
5. Hibernate: Can sleep in a cave for 1d3 weeks per odd level, not needing food or water and only waking if truly disturbed.
6. Bear Breed: Gain a random bear barbarian ability or even a magical ability from a similar totem, reflecting how the totem is a specific type of bear (black, brown, sleeping, little, or the like).

Barbarians (roll 1d6)
1. Hardy: Gain a +1d3 bonus per odd level that can be added to either increase their damage or to reduce damage done to them each round, for up to 1d3 rounds per level per day.
2. Hug: Can make a free grapple attempt against a foe that they hit in melee, gaining a +1d3 bonus for attempting to do so for every odd level they have.
3. Rage: Can fight in an especially outraged manner for 2d6 rounds up to 1d3 times per level per day, gaining a +3 to hit, damage, and hit points while suffering an AC penalty of 4. To stop the rage early, they must save vs. spell/ make a Will save DC 15, otherwise they may even attack allies until it's over. What is more, the barbarian has a base 33% chance of actually turning into a grizzly bear for every 3 rounds that he is raging, in which case it lasts 2d6 rounds longer and he also gains +2d4 Strength and Constitution during that time.
4. Tough: Gain a natural +1 AC bonus and reduce any damage done to them by 1 for every odd level they have, 3 if it would be damage from the elements.
5. Large: Gain +1d4' in height and girth, along with +1d3 Strength, +1d3 Constitution, -1d3 Dexterity, and -5' speed.
6. Bear Breed: Gain a random bear shaman ability or even martial ability from a similar totem, reflecting the bear totem being a specific type (cave, grizzly, polar, mama, papa, or the like).

Next week: Totems: Bear, Part II!