Interspecies reproduction

Discussion on game mastering Earthdawn. May contain spoilers; caution is recommended!
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Interspecies reproduction

Post by Bonhumm » Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:11 pm

As far as I know, there is no canon reference in Earthdawn on whether different races can or cannot have children together.

I had always assumed it was something similar to Shadowrun (no half-races, an offspring of a multiracial couple would have a 50% chance of being either race).

However, I stumbled recently on a website (which I cant find back) that stated, as if it was a fact, that there was no such thing in Earthdawn since the level of magic was much higher and therefore the 'genetic gateway' (i.e. the fact that everyone USED to be humans) is too far in the past.

I was wondering if this was based on anything canon or if that person had just deduced/pulled it out of his butt.

P.S. I, of course, refer to the possible offspring of couples made of humans, elves, dwarves, orks and trolls. I doubt very much, one way or another, that t'skrang would be biologically compatible with any other races, Obsidimen are asexual and there is some serious issues in bringing winglings into this.

Comments or relevant sources anyone?

Thank you.

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Re: Interspecies reproduction

Post by Mataxes » Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:30 am

As far as I'm concerned, reproduction between Name-giver races works pretty much as you describe.

The essay you're referring to is likely taking a comment from the original Earthdawn rulebook (in the Major Races of Barsaive chapter, under the heading "Kinship Between the Races") that "Theran scholars... believe that the current high level of magic increases the differences between the races."

As far as relevant sources, I think there may have been a comment in the original Throal sourcebook (and possibly included in the updates of later editions) that a member of a prominent dwarf family had an ork child by an ork father and it was covered up. I can't put my hands on it right at the moment though.

But, honestly, it isn't something that is discussed much (if at all) in official materials.
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