About Warforged.   Posted by GM.Group: 0
GM
 GM, 9 posts
Thu 28 Apr 2016
at 17:14
About Warforged
Excerpt from lecture by Dr. Fletching d'Sivis, Professor of Warforged Studies at Morgrave University on the Basics of the Modern Warforged.

"All of the warforged known thus far share some common traits that we will address here.

"First of all, none of them is or should be confused with mere constructs or automata. Warforged have as much intelligence, creativity and adaptability as any other living being. Those originally created for military purposes were certainly quite capable of taking and following orders, but they were also able to interpret and adapt those orders almost as soon as they stepped out of their forge. Their apparent willingness to obey orders can be attributed to them initially having no other clear purpose and not having intimate experience with traditional morals and ethics. Still, there is clear evidence of warforged only a few weeks old coming to question and even disobey orders that they had determined to be against some moral code, though in a few unfortunate cases the 'code' was a rather selfish one.

"So, we've established that warforged are, without getting too philosophical, at least as free-thinking as anyone else in this room. That said, warforged do exhibit some features common to constructs. Notably, they appear to have no need to eat, drink or breathe. They do not sleep, though they can lose consciousness and benefit psychologically and physically from brief periods of inactivity, during which they are fully alert. It has been theorized that, when they are created, warforged are imbued with energy from their creation forge, and perhaps this allows the warforged to maintain a link to a motive, restorative force. Of course, with all known creation forges sealed off or destroyed, there's no way to test this hypothesis.

"The durability of the warforged is well-known and indeed was one of the main reasons they were created. On average, a warforged can stand up to more direct physical punishment and continue producing physical output for longer than many other living creatures, though my honorable dwarven colleagues and their sturdy people are a notable exception to this. Apart from this distinction, warforged can generally be found in two subtypes, one of which exhibits above average strength, another with above average mental abilities. Strength is clearly advantageous for a sword-wielding soldier and so this type was seen often during the Last War, but the tactical advantages of intellectual abilities are not to be denied and numerous warforged wizards and psions were also fielded. Those warforged who exhibit psionic affinity are sometimes known as 'psiforged.'

"The physiology of the warforged certainly accounts for much of their toughness. Generally, it incorporates substances that are metallic, stony, crystalline or woody, without being precisely metal, stone, crystal or wood, as we know them. These materials form the skeleton, musculature and even nervous tissues of the warforged, but in ways that even a magically aided artificer would have difficulty duplicating. For a few examples, flexible crystalline tissues incorporated into the eyes and, for lack of a better word, brain; bones that are like stone along their length but transition into soft, flexible wood-like material at the joints; outer integument - 'skin,' if you like - that is metallic, but which is capable of healing and growing into new shapes. Their bodily fibers are infused with liquid that seems to circulate and lubricate and that shares properties with the other materials of their bodies, appears vital to their survival, and - though I hesitate to mention this - appears to attract and provide sustenance to creatures that also prey on the blood of living beings. Furthermore, warforged bodies do not rust or rot while they are alive, though they can be affected by disease and poison, even those that generally afflict only creatures that respire or have other bodily functions.

"In all, the warforged form proves remarkably resistant and resilient. They are able to shrug off effects that other living beings would find debilitating or incapacitating, such as being burned or even set alight, frozen, poisoned - another trait in common with dwarves, if I may say so - ah..., gashed, rent or most anything else including psychic onslaught. In fact, they are (perhaps owing again to their physiology, their less spongy neural material) slightly resistant to direct attacks upon their psyches. I should clarify though that while they can shrug off the lasting effects of a transient incident, they will still suffer if exposed to adverse conditions, such as extremes of heat or cold.

"In terms of resilience, we have seen that warforged who are suffering from wear and tear, both physical and mental, have a remarkable ability to spring back. Most remarkable of all is that this ability seems more potent when a warforged is in greater need.

"Finally, it should be mentioned that while warforged are durable, they can of course die, like any other living being. What is different in the case of warforged is that, though mortally wounded and unconscious, a warforged can halt their own descent toward death. As long as its body is safe, the warforged can remain in that wounded state indefinitely, though I can't imagine that's a pleasant prospect for them.

"So, any questions?"
GM
 GM, 11 posts
Wed 4 May 2016
at 18:41
About Warforged
"Yes, in the back? Hm? Speak up!

"Ah, yes. The question was 'who designed the warforged?' A fairly common question, usually from those who wish to either praise or condemn that designer. We don't know. It might have been a powerful member of House Cannith. Historians tell us that the first warforged were the creations of the giants of Xen'drik, who might have designed them, or been inspired by the dreams influenced by the Quori. The theory I favor, though, is that their 'design' stems from the same place as that of flesh and blood beings. The gods, if you like, or the Dragons.

"I have technical reasons for this theory which are beyond the scope of this lecture, though I discuss them at length in my advanced courses. The simple answer is that warforged are not imbued upon their creation with a purpose.

"Simple constructs such as golems and most other creatures made by mortal beings have an instinctive sense of the job they were created to do: follow orders, or seek a target, for instance. Warforged lack this, just as you and I lacked this when we were born. We had to learn about the world and find out for ourselves what goals and purposes to pursue. So too the warforged.

"This may sound surprising, given that the 'intent' for warforged was that they serve in the War. It's important to remember that, unlike flesh and blood beings, warforged are 'born' fully aware and capable of questioning. They immediately seek purpose and are prone to take up the first one that's offered to them. We'll never know for certain, but what would become of warforged who, upon creation, were handed paint brushes, or musical instruments, or placed at the helm of a vessel? I believe they would, at least at first, take up that cause or any other handed them by those present at their creation."