Runebounds are a remnant of an era long gone. These living constructs were made by magitech researchers who were researching the Magisphere to create a weapon to fight against Tiamat during the Age of Dragons. Their effort resulted in the creation of rune cores, which were powerful enough to magically power an automaton. The first runebound followed basic order and performed simple tasks. However, later runebounds developed a quasi-consciousness that made them more sentient, but still reliant on their magical-programming.
Once their design had been finalized, they were crafted in large number and enlisted in the war against dragons. It was thanks to these powerful and subservient weapons that the world was liberated from Tiamat. After the war, the runebound's fearsome and destructive power led their creators to dismantle them en mass. Survivors of the dismantlement ran away, but eventually depleted their mana source and became lost in time.
Nowadays, runebounds may occasionally awaken on their own from some kind of magical flux that recharges their rune core, or they are recovered by scavengers and sold off to collectors or wizards.
Unchanging and Distinctive
Runebounds are modeled after human, but can have any skin tone, hair color, and eye color. Runebound eyes, however, glow in the dark and appear very artificial. All runebounds possess some kind of visible mechanical feature on their body, which were meant to prevent them from masquerading as human. Common features include mechanical ears, a magitech apparatus on their head, mechanical arm, facial magitech markings, etc. Most runebounds try their best to hide these features to avoid drawing attention.
Runebound's body is a mixture of synthetic flesh and metal. Soft human skin coats the runebound's entire body, making it difficult to differentiate from a human through touch. Damaged skin can regenerate on its own, so long as it is not major damage.
Peacetime War Tools
Runebounds may be sentient and have some sort of personality, but they are tools made for war. Runebounds do not have a sense of collectivism, they do not have a shared culture, or any personal feeling toward their own kind. They live to fulfill a purpose, whether it is internally or externally generated. Runebounds considers a purposeless life no different than death.
Subservience is hard-coded into all runebounds, forcing them to serve someone or something that would give them a goal or a purpose. This programming makes them extremely vulnerable against those who wishes to exploit them for their own gain.
Since the Draconic War was long ended, runebounds who awake or are awakened in the new world must find a new purpose for themselves or find someone who will give them one. Few find themselves going off their programming the longer they spend in the new world, giving birth to a new form of life.
Currently, runebound is a rare sight. The few that are uncovered are often sold to rich lords at exorbitant prices. Some runebounds are also hunted by gold-seeking poachers. A runebounds' loyalty and incredible ancient power makes them a highly sought-after commodity.
Although the first runebounds behaved like simple automaton, later runebound models became able to process emotions, eventually giving rise to their peculiar personality. Each runebound develops their personality differently, it is shaped by their environment and lived experience.
Whether it is due to some flaws in their creation, simple ignorance of how other creatures operate, or a side-effect of sentience, all runebounds possess an quirk or two. You can roll or select a trait from the quirks table below, or make your own.
|1||You are overly cautious, often analyzing (out loud) the potential threat poses by every creature you meet.|
|2||You do not understand emotions and often misread emotional cues or the atmosphere of a situation.|
|3||You are fiercely protective of anyone you consider remotely close to you. and obsess over friendship.|
|4||You often vocalize what you are thinking without realizing it.|
|5||You try to apply wartime tactics and discipline to most situations regardless of the context.|
|6||You sometimes don't know how to process your feelings and often expresses it incorrectly.|
|7||You don't understand clothing beyond its utility and assume that what a creature wears denotes its job and status.|
|8||You obsess over your appearance and constantly check on yourself to fix any perceived errors.|
|9||You are deeply concerned with following proper procedures and protocols, even when they do not make sense.|
|10||War is the only thing that makes sense to you, and you're often looking for a fight.|
|11||You often get attached to smaller things and will try to adopt them as a surrogate child.|
|12||You are obsessed with a race of people and their culture, leading you to study what they are like with the belief that you are or can become one of them.|
Each runebound has a design that helps them fulfill a specific purpose. Pick a design below, its ability score and features is an addition to the runebound racial stats.
Soldier-runebounds were feared for their efficiency on the battlefield. This design is optimized for grueling skirmishes on the front line, given a body that can endure more wear-and-tear than other designs.
|Traits & Features|
These runebounds specialize in reconnaissance, their design favor a high mobility and speed. Their runebound features are also made to be less apparent to help them blend in and remain unseen.
|Traits & Features|
Most of these runebounds were used as magical artillery while an exceptionally talented few served as tacticians or artificers. Due to their high intelligence, magus-runebounds tend to possess extreme personalities.
|Traits & Features|
Entertainer-runebounds are designed to be courtesans, musicians, actors, poets, jobs that relieved soldiers' stress on the battlefield. Per their design, they excel at not only performance and artistry, but also at navigating social situations. They were also sometimes used as spies.
|Traits & Features|