Dwarf, Daergar

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Dwarf, Daergar
Climate/Terrain:Tropical, subtropical and temperate/Subterranean
Activity Cycle:Any
Intelligence:Varies (3-18)
Treasure:M (×5); (G,Q (×20),R)
Alignment:Varies, but usually lawful evil
No. Appearing:4-400
Armor Class:4 (10)
Hit Dice:1
No. of Attacks:1
Damage/Attack:1-8 or by weapon
Special Attacks:See below
Special Defenses:See below
Magic Resistance:See below
Size:S (4' tall)
Morale:Elite (13)
XP Value:Varies

Daergar are a clan of dark dwarves who split from the Theiwar hundreds of years ago. They are among the most violent of all the dwarven races.

Daergar have light brown skin and smooth cheeks. Their hair is black or gray, their eyes deep brown or violet. They are somewhat stockier than other dwarves, averaging 150-180 pounds. Typical attire includes fuss, beathes boots, and dull gray chain mail

Combat: Daergar are hot-tempered and brutal fighters. They are utterly without honor on the battlefield. Seldom encountered alone, Daergar usually fight in squads of 1d6+6, often accompanied by wild dogs, hell hounds, or similarly vicious creatures. Daergar carry shields, hammers, clubs, and battle axes.

Habitat/Society: Daergar have established impressive strongholds in the caverns beneath the Kharolis Mountains. Outposts are also rumored to exist elsewhere on the continent. Daergar cities are dark and gloomy. A typical Daergar city is dominated by windowless prison modules and a huge arena where prisoners engage in bloody combat for the amusement of the citizens.

About 40-50% of a group of Daergar are females and young. About 80% of adult males are 1st-level fighters, 10% are 2nd- or 3rd-level fighters, 5% are 4th-level or higher fighters, and 5% are priests and thieves of various levels. The Daergar leader is generally the most powerful warrior of the kingdom; rule passes to the leader's eldest son when the leader dies. The leader represents the Daergar in the Council of Thanes (see the “Mountain Dwarf” entry for more about the council).

Among the most revered members of the Daergar society are the bonemasters. Bonemasters are elder Daergar who attend to the bone pits located on the village perimeters, designing weapons, tools, and armor from the bones. Typically, there is one bonemaster for every 200 members of a society.

Bonemasters also have the ability to animate bones, creating living skeletons to do the bonemaster's bidding. A bonemaster can animate humanoid and animal skeletons alike; a number of skeletons equal to the bonemaster's level can be animated at the same time. The animated skeletons cannot be turned as long as the bonemaster is alive. Bonemasters can be of any class; they choose their successors, to whom they teach the bone-animating ability.

Ecology: Daergar have little interest in the affairs of other races. They hate Neidar and have no particular affection for humans, elves, or kender.