Race Review: Ratter (Ross Leiser): 4.5 Stars
Painfully aware of how limited their time is, these scholarly ratters blaze through texts and tomes, desperate to discover some lost lore such as the secret to attaining immortality, or to find an adventure that will be sung of in taverns across the world – anything that will keep their memory alive throughout the eons.
Animal-based races are very popular in D&D 5e, and Ross Leiser’s Ratter (rat people) should be no exception. With all the quality and creativity Outlandish Adventure Productions is known for, the Ratter provides a unique, slightly sinister, and flexible option for a new animal race.
Concept. There are several really cool ideas for this race that combine to form an amazing, unique whole. My favorite idea is probably the most volatile in terms of danger to players–Ratters only live 20 years. This frames their whole existence, and it’s great to see this mechanic influence nearly every facet of the race. Just try not to get magically aged…
Another cool concept is the ability for this race to straddle the martial and the intelligence niches. Since they’re small, they can move through most creatures and have a fair bit of mobility, and yet have some cool roleplaying features that allow them to be great researchers and communicators. Along with the two feats offered in the product, the Ratter is an excellent all-around play option!
Production Quality. Like everything Ross creates, the production is expert quality. The art is topical and well-done. The layout flows smoothly and is extremely easy to read. The writing and editing are professional. Every aspect of how this product is produced immerses and aids the reader, rather than hinders them. Outlandish Adventure Productions is among the top creators when it comes to how their products look.
Fluff. The narrative surrounding the Ratter is fun to read and really brings the race to life. A focus on family, a short life, and an inexhaustible attitude to succeed and improve provide abundant roleplaying and character creation opportunities. The narrative also provides ample opportunity for complex interactions with other races.
Portrayal. My one complaint about the race is that it is, generally, portrayed as selfish at best, chaotic evil at worst. Granted, plenty of players will like this, and the author grants some flexibility in alignment and temperament, but while the alignment and mannerisms of the ratter is a logical conclusion to their narrative, it is also the easiest narrative to write. This shouldn’t affect playability, but is something to keep in mind as you play the race.
Balanced High. While still completely viable and balanced in a campaign, the Ratter definitely boarders the high side of balance up there with dwarf and elf. This comes not only from the amount of features, but the breadth as well. They are all great features, but expect it to play more like a dwarf or halfling than a tiefling or a dragonborn.
Ross Leiser has made a fun, excellent race in the Ratter, and it is rated 4.5 Stars and Highly Recommended for people who appreciate animal races. It would work particularly well for an arcane trickster or dex based eldritch knight! You can (and should) pick it up by clicking on the picture below!