S is for Serpent folk

Serpent folk - how to include them in the old world

Dungeons and Dragons, Legend of the Five Rings, Call of Cthulhu and many other role playing game settings have serpent folk in some way. However Warhammer fantasy setting doesn't  Let’s see how game masters can include them in the background.

Given that serpent men aren't part of the official settings we could infer several information:

  • They don’t live in the Old World
  • They aren't related to the lizardmen
  • They aren't related to the chaos coming from the north pole.
From this we could create following pieces of an alternative background:

  • Some have the torso of a human, other have the body of a snake with human arms and legs. The serpent trait could also be the one from a cobra, viper, boa and any other snakes. Pick the form and lineage you like and the illustration from previous mentioned sources.
  • Serpent folk are a civilization of serpent-like people. Serpent folk lay eggs, and they have a rather low body temperature without being cold blooded like reptiles. The form of the body and the reptile lineage are either related to different tribes or different castes. Pick whatever you like.
  • They are from the far east of the Old World being Indus or Cathay. They are reclusive as they don’t mix and doesn't appear very numerous. For instance they could fill the niche of the dwarf or the skaven.
Skaven could be the main reasons to bring serpent folk to the Old World. Clan Eshin is coming back to the Old World after leaving for the far east. On another hand there aren't many tales about skaven in these countries. What if skaven are fleeing from there or are pushed back by a natural predator like serpent folk? Then we could have serpents following the trail to find new rat nests to plunder and consume. Serpents could be some kind of good guys that could tip the balanced more in favor of the order. Or they are just neutral and would do nothing else than hunt. Or they are just as evil as skavens and will prey and hunt anything they find. Or they as diverse as humans and are a mix of all this.

This entry presents one possible story to include serpent folk on Oerth and in the Old World by adding some new perspective to the Skaven. If you don’t like that one but think that serpent folks have something to bring, then go ahead, it’s your game, your world to shape.

-JMT

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