Chameleo (3.5e Race)

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Chameleos are a small, quiet race, often found in the deep recesses of various jungles. Chameleo society works on a generational basis-- where people born in the same year or so are often grouped together like a family. Chameleo work off of each others strengths to build quiet, hidden villages, where they defend themselves from the outside world.

Chameleo are arranged like in schools. Newborns are taken care of by their parents for about a year before they're put together with other Chameleo of that generation. From then on, the Chameleo act as a "school" or family and will spend the rest of their lives taking care of each other. The first few years they are helped along by their individual blood-parents as well as the school their parents come from. Young Chameleo get a strong understanding of who's-who from this. Traditionally, by year 6, a class has 4-30 Chameleo in it, who are completely self-sufficient for basic survival. While their blood-parents are still available and do step in when aid is needed, they are mostly estranged; a Chameleo class becomes their family and friends. Sometime between year 10 and year 14, one of the older classes of Chameleo take on the responsibility of teaching the younger generation about their own history and skills. Cultural or regional skills are taught at this time.

Unlike most races, Chameleo mate almost exclusively within their generation. Romance outside of their age-group very foreign to them, though can occur. Around year 18 they start their mating cycles. Chameleo romance is complex and mysterious. It's popular that any two chameleo who develop an especially close relationship become "exclusive friends". To Chameleo, this is the same as saying "Best friend", though is a more exclusive title. These relationships often culminate in the two becoming mates. Chameleo may have their own individual lives and time away from their school-group, but like a home, they always end up back among them, at some point.

Chameleo elders are revered as the wiser among them, and are usually the ones to take up political titles or serving as tie-breakers in younger generations disputes. Chameleos rarely venture out alone and always rely on their individual schools to tackle large threats or problems, whatever they may be.


Chameleo are generally optimistic, skittish, expressive and cooperative. When comfortable, they tend to be laid back and enjoy various forms of expression. They tend to build small groups of trusted allies and friends whom they work close with. Chameleo are extremely comfortable when hiding and observing-- waiting for the best time to strike or add in their expertise to a situation. Occasionally, they have a curious, fearful or paranoid streak, making them more or less tolerant of outsiders.

Physical Description[edit]

Small, skittish and green, chameleo are basically anthropomorphic chameleons. They have large stereoscopic eyes, long fingers and long, extrudable tongues. They often wear little clothing as their skin can rapidly change colors. Though they can imitate any color or pattern, most have a "default" color they usually keep. Most males are bright green, red or other highly saturated colors. Females are often peach, gray, tan or other pale colors. They have tails that help them balance when climbing and are often curled up at the end.


The chameleo race itself is almost unheard of by most races. They are quiet and neutral by nature, thus rarely make either friends or enemies. It is said that only a gnome could ever find a chameleo village in the first place. Gnomes are one of the few races with fair knowledge of the race, and tend to be well liked. Chameleo almost always have a strong alliance with Jungle Gnomes, especially if they need to deal with flooding or crossing water. They also have an inherent bond to the earth and earth elementals, though their paths almost never cross.


Though they can be of any alignment, chameleo are usually Neutral good. They have an innate need for community and have a strong respect for life. Though Chameleo tend to build powerful communities with general traditions and laws, they're fairly adaptive and change community rules as needed. Even the most chaotic Chameleo often end up among a group of allies.


Chameleo villages are hard to come by. They exist out of sight-- under great rocks or within the hollowed-out interior of great trees. Chameleo are found mostly in jungle terrain, where they get the most out of their hiding and climbing abilities. Chameleo villages are built in natural dips and thickets of trees, where the natural terrain acts as a wall to deter outsiders from accidentally walking through their towns.


Chameleos are so dependent on each other for support that loner chameleo are very rare. Surprisingly, chameleo villages are extremely welcoming towards loner chameleo. They are often greeted with small fanfare and curiosity. Chameleo folklore is dotted with stories of lone chameleos who go out into the world and bring back some rarity that aids the community, or some cure that their village needed. They are seen as heroes and signs of good change. Village elders often make a point to greet foreign chameleo, as chaotic or evil chameleo are often exiled from their original communities, too.


Chameleo usually revere family-centric deities or quiet, nature-themed religions. They seem to revere variant forms of Ehlonna, Lathander, Chauntea and Meriadar. Their estranged nature gives them a limited understanding of outside deities. They also seem to revere a nameless Chameleo hero of old, who appears to have been an ancient Druid. Chameleo who leave their homeland occasionally adopt newer deities.

Art & Culture[edit]

Chameleo actually don't appreciate music and song as much as most races, preferring the sound of nature or such. However, what they lack in the sound they make up for in vision. Chameleo have a special knack for color, form and even dancing and acting. Chameleo history is full of all sorts of artists who've spend their lives perfecting their art. Though rarely seen or ever traded, Chameleo have some extremely valuable art pieces hidden away in their homes. Chameleo's ancient history is unwritten; hundreds of ancient paintings depict the old Chameleo lore. Often an entire generation of Chameleo choose to take it upon themselves to display, protect and promote the old arts, keeping it alive for generations to come.


Chameleo often speak a mix of common and what's commonly know as "chameleon sign language". Chameleon sign language is when they use their skin colors to convex various messages and feelings instead of words. Chameleo society has deep and rich culture ingrained in their combined use of color and words to talk to each other. Other than common and gnomish, chameleo rarely take on other foreign languages.


Chameleo are named by their parents at birth, but have been known to have their name morph as they grow older. If two in the same age-range have similar names, they'll likely morph into variations of that name as time goes on. Unlike many races, Chameleo don't carry family names and usually are known by just their first. Traditional Chameleo names are described as sounding like squeaks, calls or exclamations.

Example names: Uoap, Eep-eir, Opahda, Wop, Yee, Eepsis, Yeez, Kak-aray, Kickel, Ahmahgo

Racial Traits[edit]

  • +2 Dexterity, −2 Wisdom: Chameleo are nimble and coordinated, but are somewhat naive about the world around them.
  • Humanoid (Reptilian)
  • Low-light vision
  • Chameleon Skin (Ex): +1 bonus to Armor Class,
  • Chameleon Skin (Ex): Chameleos can alter their skin color enabling them to imitate their surroundings and hide better. They have a +2 racial bonus to Hide checks. This ability improves as the Chameleo learns. The racial bonus grows +1 for every 3 Hit Dice he has.
  • Sticky Tongue (Ex): As a Standard Action, a Chameleo can shoot out his tongue and attempt to grab small objects within 10ft of himself. He can only grab objects that are unattended, in line-of-sight and weigh 10lbs or less. For each Strength modifier he has, add 10lbs to the max load he can grab. The object is immediately caught by the Chameleo in his free hand, or else it drops to the floor at his feet. If he spends a Full round instead of the standard, he can move the object 5ft from where it is, or knock it 10-15ft in any direction. This action provokes an Attack of Opportunity, but the tongue can not be hit, even as it invades other squares. Beware that objects that are coated in poison or are disease-ridden will count as if licked still.
  • Show How you Feel: Chameleo use their skin as a form of communication, a response to temperature, light, and mood, as well as a defense against predators. Chameleo can communicate simple conversations visually, as if in their own language, also called "Chameleon Sign Language". As a swift action, they can communicate simple commands or info in battle. Outside creatures may learn Chameleon Sign Language, just like any other language, but cannot communicate back without effective means to change color.
  • +2 racial bonus on Climb and Spot checks.
  • −2 racial penalty to Bluff checks.
  • Automatic Languages: Common, Chameleon Sign Language. Bonus Languages: Draconic, Dwarven, Elven, Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Orc.
  • Favored Class: Ranger.

Vital Statistics[edit]

Table: Chameleo Random Starting Ages
Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
18 years +1d4 +1d10 +2d12
Table: Aging Effects
Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
28 years 50 years 72 years +3d12 years
  1. At middle age, −1 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  2. At old age, −2 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
  3. At venerable age, −3 to Str, Dex, and Con; +1 to Int, Wis, and Cha.
Table: Chameleo Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 2' 10" +2d4 40 lb. +1d20 lb.
Female 2' 11" +2d4 40 lb. +1d20 lb.

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