Zotz, Flames of Night

“There’s comfort yet; they are assailable.
Then be thou jocund. Ere the bat hath flown
His cloistered flight, ere to black Hecate’s summons
The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums
Hath rung night’s yawning peal, there shall be done
A deed of dreadful note.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth

Playtest Version

This material is still in the process of being playtested. It is fully usable as written, but may be refined or changed in later versions. As always, this content should only be used with GM permission.


The Zotz

A zotz resembles an enormous roughly five foot tall bat with lanky human proportions and arms in addition to their huge membranous wings. Most are covered in a thin coat of black or brown fur over tan skin, and they have hard, blunt claws better suited for holding on to rocks or trees than fighting with. They are especially skilled with magic and every individual, whether a spellcaster or not, has some degree of power running through their veins and manifesting either physically or through innate supernatural talents. Few people have ventured to their homelands, but those who do report jungles concealing perilously tall pyramids much too steep to climb, set into the sides of mountains with entryways to vast cavern systems.

A Created People

The zotz were created millenia ago by a mighty spellcaster to serve as personal servitors within his vast cavernous and volcanic lair. It is said he merged people, bats, and multiple types of extraplanar power to form them, but the zotz were proud and unwilling to be mere servants, slaying their master and systematically eradicating his name from history so he would have no legacy. Their culture is somewhat related to that of the people from which they were made, but it has changed dramatically with their modified nature and thousands of years of separation.

Tripartite Culture

Zotz society has three genders, with associated modes of dress, typical occupations, pronouns, and so on. These genders are not related to reproduction, however, but to which of the three sources of power from which the zotz were created—Fire, Darkness, or Earth—and which associated the cultural connotations of those powers are most influential in the individual’s personality. Marriage can occur between any zotz, but a marriage with three individuals, one of each gender, is considered especially spiritually and magically significant, and is expected of any rulers of a city state or greater, in order that all three sources of power be represented in governance.

Zotz Names

Each zotz is named for some mighty or cunning or dangerous individual, usually hero, ruler, or mythological figure. A zotz who achieves deeds of fame or infamy comparable to those achievements is given a new name, which then enters the corpus of names for future generations. In zotz names, an “x” is pronounced like “sh” and an apostrophe represents a glottal stop.

Example Fire Names: Chaac, Hunraqan, Itzamna, K’inich Kakmo, Q’uq’umatz, Tohil, Vucub-Caquix, Xbalanque, Yaxkin

Example Darkness Names: Awilix, Balam, Chriakan, Ek Chuah, Hosanek, Ixtab, Saccimi, Tunkuruchu, Xquic, Yunuen

Example Earth Names: Cantzicnal, Hobnil, Ixchel, Nicte, Och-Kan, Tecun, Voltan, Yum Kaax, Xoc, Zipacna

New Species: Zotz

    Common Personality Traits: Secretive, intense, proud
    Common Physical Traits: Quiet, lean muscle, ceremonial dress
    Type: Medium biped folk with a Reach of 1. Your maximum wounds equal your Constitution score.

  • Attributes: No modifiers
  • Base Speed: 20 ft.
  • Inner Spark: When you inflict damage with an unarmed or melee attack, you may convert it to fire damage without suffering the normal -4 penalty.
  • Night Fighting: You gain the Night Fighting feat.
  • Unbreakable: Each time you suffer attribute impairment, it decreases by 1 (minimum 0).
  • Winged Flight: You have winged flight with a fly speed of 40 ft.
  • Light-Sensitive: Each time you enter a more brightly lit area, you suffer 20 points of flash damage (see FC, page 210).

Legal Appendix

This product includes Open Game Content that may only be used under and in terms of the Open Game License Version 1.0a

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All material in this document following the Playtest Version sidebar and prior to the Legal Appendix that is not otherwise designated as Product Identity is Open Game Content.



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