This creature has the sun-bronzed upper body of a seasoned warrior and the lower body of a sleek warhorse.
AC 20, touch 11, flat-footed 18 (+6 armor, +2 Dex, +1 natural, +2 shield, –1 size)
Speed 50 ft.; 35 ft. in armor
Str 15, Dex 14, Con 15, Int 11, Wis 14, Cha 12
Although a centaur is Large, its upper torso is the same size as that of a Medium humanoid. As a result, they wield weapons as if they were one size category smaller than their actual size (Medium for most centaurs).
Publisher’s Choice Quality Stock Art (c) Rick Hershey / Fat Goblin Games
Environment temperate forests and plains
Organization solitary, pair, band (3–10), tribe (11–30 plus 3 hunters of 3rd level and 1 leader of 6th level)
Treasure standard (breastplate, heavy steel shield, longsword, spear, other treasure)
Legendary hunters and skilled warriors, centaurs are part man and part horse. Typically found on the fringes of civilization, these stoic people vary widely in appearance, their skin tones typically appearing deeply tanned but similar to the humans who occupy nearby regions, while their lower bodies borrow the colorations of local equines. Centaur hair and eyes trend toward darker colors and their features tend to be broad, while the overall bulk of their bodies is influenced by the size of the horses their lower quarters resemble. Thus, while an average centaur stands over 7 feet tall and weights upward of 2,000 pounds, there are vast regional variations—from lean plains-runners to burly mountain hunters. Centaurs typically live to be about 60 years old.
Aloof with other races and at odds even with their own kind, the centaurs are an old race only slowly coming to accept the modern world. While the majority of centaurs still live in tribes roaming vast plains or the fringes of eldritch forests, many have abandoned the isolationist ways of their ancestors to walk among the more cosmopolitan cities of the world. Often such free-spirited centaurs are considered outcasts and are shunned by their own tribes, making the decision to leave a heavy one. In some rare cases, however, whole tribes under progressive leaders have come to trade or make alliances with other humanoid communities—typically elves, but sometimes gnomes, and rarely humans or dwarves. Many races remain wary of centaurs, though, largely due to legends of territorial beastmen and the regular, violent encounters the centaurs have with stubborn settlers and expansionist countries.
While traveling near centaur lands, characters can often glimpse groups of 15 to 20 stoic centaur warriors from afar. Tribes hope these shows of force will deter outsiders from trespassing on their lands. If strangers still advance, a vanguard of two to four centaur chargers thunders towards the interlopers and demonstrates a militaristic march that stops just short of violence. Trespassers who remain peaceful amid the chargers’ taunts and can convince the vanguard that no other path around the tribe’s territory is available (and who also offer some service in return) may be granted supervised passage through the centaurs’ realm.
Travelers who stumble unwittingly into centaur lands, or who attempt to trespass stealthily but fail to obscure their presence, are swiftly tracked down by a band of two to 12 centaur foragers. These rangers harry trespassers, providing ample opportunities for them to flee. If the intruders resist, the foragers stalk them while calling in reinforcements (usually an additional two to six foragers accompanied by a centaur greenspeaker) to help repel the stubborn interlopers.
In rare instances, centaurs welcome travelers into their settlements and camps in sacred glens, savannas, steppes, and tors. Usually an enclave of clan chiefs rules these regions, and many of these leaders practice divine magic. Most tribes maintain ties to ancient nature deities. However, barbaric tribes in regions where travelers are rarely welcomed sometimes serve demon lords—especially Kostchtchie—and outsiders who happen upon the horrific rituals rarely leave alive.