Peoples of Tòlanar III: Kàakö (Frost Giants)

III. KÀAKÖ (Frost Giant)


Kàakö have a reputation for crudeness and stupidity. This reputation is not entirely undeserved, but they are crafty fighters. The Kàakö resemble huge muscular, humans. An adult male is about 12 feet tall and weighs about 1,400 pounds. Females are slightly shorter and lighter, but otherwise identical with males. They have snow-white or ivory skin. Their hair is light blue or dirty yellow, with matching eyes. They can live to be 160 years old.

Kàakö warrior
Kàakö warrior

Warriors usually wear chain mail and metal helmets decorated with horns or feathers (AC 0). They also wear skins and pelts, along with any jewellery they own. They will usually start combat at a distance, throwing rocks or huge chunks of ice until they run out of ammunition, or the opponent closes. One of their favourite strategies is to ambush victims by hiding buried in the snow at the top of an icy or snowy slope where opponents will have difficulty reaching them.

A Kàakö‘s oversized weapons do double normal (man-sized) damage to all opponents, plus the Kàakö’s strength bonus. Warriors favour huge battle axes but have been known to use swords or spears as well.

Kàakö live in small tribal bands consisting of a chief, his henchmen, and their camp followers. A band usually will occupy a crude fortress or frigid cavern. Particularly strong or intelligent Kàakö chieftains will occasionally gain command of three or four bands.

Kàakö Lands
Kàakö Lands

Kàakö often capture and tame other creatures as guards. There is a 50% chance that a Kàakö lair will contain 1-6 winter wolves. Larger than normal groups check once for every eight Kàakö. Bands with 20 or more Kàakö have a additional 30% chance to have 1-4 yeti, larger groups check once for every 16 Kàakö. Legends even tell of some bands having subdued white dragons in addition to other guards (age category 2-5 (1d4+1)). Kàakö also take captives to hold for ransom or use as slaves. There is a 15% chance that a lair will contain 1-2 captives, larger bands check once per eight Kàakö. Captives can be of any race.

As a general rule, Kàakö senses are far superior to those of mankind. The average Kàakö can see and hear twice as well as the average man, a result of their oversize sensory organs. In addition, their eyes are particularly sensitive to the higher end of the visible spectrum, helping them navigate and identify friends/foes in blinding snowstorms.

Most Kàakö tribes are loosely organized into hòana [HOH-ah-nah], or families, that take on the responsibility of child rearing. Typically, a full third of any Kàakö tribe comprises young giants who have yet to reach maturity. Among Kàakö, a hòana bond is more important than any connection save Kulkokdù (“the order”, see below).

For the most part, giant females bear their young in the same fashion as their human counterparts.

The gestation period is 12. Kàakö babies of all breeds are between 3 and 4 feet tall at birth (with 2 Hit Dice). It takes approximately 20 years to reach maturity. Over the course of this development, the Kàakö grows in height and Hit Dice proportionately. In other words, a 10-year-old giant has half his final Hit Dice and stands half his final height.

Kàakö society is based on the concept of the Kulkokdù — the order. Kàakö societies are always organized around a stringent pecking order that stretches from the tribe’s leader or chieftain all the way down to its lowliest runt. Unlike most other civilized societies, the Kulkokdù is not based upon classes or castes, but upon single individuals. There are no equals in Kàakö society, just inferiors and superiors. Every Kàakö is always aware of his or her exact rank within the Kulkokdù: the chieftain is Avka (or “One”), his closest adviser is Kuǩa (or “Two”), etc. all the way down to the lowliest member of the tribe. The Kulkokdù is based around wrestling, revelling, and boasting. To rise in the Kulkokdù, one simply challenges a superior to a contest in one of those skills. Challengers who win change Kulkokdù rankings with the superiors they bested. Some tribes place no restrictions upon such contests, while others have devised special rules dictating when and if challenges may be issued.

The Kulkokdù is seen as sacrosanct, and violating it is considered an especially vile act (the Kàakö term is “Nuik” which carries the connotation of evil and abhorrent). Violations include: refusing to show respect for a superior, refusing to share resources (treasure, food, etc.) with superiors, mocking/belittling superiors, refusing to obey valid orders, granting inferiors access to things above their station, etc.

Although their Kulkokdù ranks measure the Kàakö’s station only within their own tribes, the customary greeting between members of two different tribes includes an oral exchange of ranks. Though a Kàakö is under no obligation to treat a higher ranking Kàakö from another tribe as a superior, any other reaction is a blatant insult. The obligation to their own tribal superiors is always stronger than their obligation to a superior from another tribe. Failure to respect the rank of an outsider is merely an insult or faux pas, not Nuik.

Although giant priests and shamans rarely occupy the top spot within their tribes, an old custom allows two priests of different tribes to band together and temporarily overrule both their chieftains. Whenever two tribes stand in conflict, the highest ranking holy men on each side have the authority to jointly call a parley to resolve the situation. During such a parley, the holy men work together to discuss the will of Annam. If they reach a consensus, their decision is traditionally binding upon both tribal leaders.

Though many priests like to perpetuate the myth that clerical parleys are solved through complex religious rites and magical divination, the simple truth is that they are usually little more than power-brokering sessions. In fact, rival clerics have been known to maneuver their tribes into conflict just to give themselves the opportunity to hold a binding parley. Implementing such a scheme isn’t necessarily nuik, so long as the cleric believes the best interests of the tribe are served.

These days, clerical parleys are quite uncommon. The “splitting of ranks” that generally accompanies a parley would seem a bit out of place in the Kàakö societies of today. Most contemporary priests and shamans stand in absolute accord with their chieftains.

Kàakö characters have the following game-specific (3.5) characteristics.

  • Stat Adjustments: +14 Strength, +8 Constitution, –2 Dexterity, –4 Intelligence, –4 Charisma.
  • Size: Large (–1 penalty to Armour Class, –1 penalty on attack rolls, –4 penalty on Hide checks, +4 bonus on grapple checks, lifting and carrying limits double those of Medium characters).
  • Space/Reach: 10 feet/10 feet.
  • Movement:    A Kàakö‘s base land speed is 40 feet.
  • Immunity: Kàakö are immune to all cold effects, whether natural or magical.
  • Low Light Vision (A Kàakö can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and
  • Racial Hit Dice: A Kàakö begins with twelve levels of giant, which provide 12d8 Hit Dice, a base attack bonus of +8, and base saving throw bonuses of Fort +8, Ref +4, and Will +4.
  • Racial Skills: A Kàakö’s giant levels give it skill points equal to 15 × (2 + Int modifier). Its class skills are Climb, Jump, Listen, and Spot.
  • Racial Feats: A Kàakö’s giant levels give it five feats.
  • Armour Class: +9 natural armour bonus.
  • Natural Weapons: 2 slams (1d4).
  • Weapon and Armour Proficiency: A Kàakö is automatically proficient with simple weapons, martial weapons, light and medium armour, and shields.
  • Rock Throwing (Ex): Adult Kàakö are accomplished rock throwers and receive a +1 racial bonus on attack rolls when throwing rocks. A Kàakö of at least Large size can hurl rocks weighing 40 to 50 pounds each (Small objects, 2d6) up to five range increments. The range increment is 120 feet for a Kàakö’s thrown rocks. A Huge Kàakö can hurl rocks of 60 to 80 pounds (Medium objects, 3d6).
  • Rock Catching (Ex): A Kàakö of at least Large size can catch Small, Medium, or Large rocks (or projectiles of similar shape). Once per round, a Kàakö that would normally be hit by a rock can make a Reflex save to catch it as a free action. The DC is 15 for a Small rock, 20 for a Medium one, and 25 for a Large one. (If the projectile provides a magical bonus on attack rolls, the DC increases by that amount.) The Kàakö must be ready for and aware of the attack in order to make a rock catching attempt.
  • Favoured Class: Barbarian.
  • Level Adjustment: +4 ECL.

Kàakö Random Starting Ages

Adulthood Simple Moderate Complex
20 years +2d4 +5d6 +5d12

Kàakö Aging Effects

Middle Age1 Old2 Venerable3 Maximum Age
60 years 130 years 150 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.

Kàakö Random Height and Weight

Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 330 cm (10’10”) +5d12 cm (+2d12”) 613 kg (1345 lb.) + 5d8 kg (+5x(3d6) lb.)
Female 309 cm (10’2”) +6d8 cm (+3d6”) 458 kg (1010 lb.) + 3d10 kg (+5 x (1d12) lb.)

Based on the Hill Giant, Frost Giant, and Mountain Giant entries in the D&D Wiki with additional details drawn from the Giancraft book and the entry in the Monstrous Manual.

Source for image.


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