Aquatic Peoples of the Oceans

More aquatic peoples! Hope you enjoy these. I just did Dungeon World builds this time, but might add Pathfinder later.


The most well-known of the aquatic people, merfolk live in the open seas and come in a variety of vivid colors. These beautiful people are the most human-like: farming kelp, waging wars, creating art. They engage with other humanoid races as much as the next and the important trade routes depend on their good favor.

Dungeon World build:

Intelligent, Group, amphibious

8 hp, 2 armor

Attack, close, spear (d8)

Special Moves:

  • Disarm with their beauty
  • Disappear into the waters.
  • Attack in numbers.
Deep Merfolk

The day I fell off the ship, I thought the sea was going to take me. I blacked out after gulping down mouthfuls of sea water and falling under the surface. But then I found myself dry in some kind of dark cave. Huge eyes loomed at me and at first I thought I was in hell. But they were kind and helped me heal. Although I never did get over that weird translucent skin. Once I recovered enough, they put me in this odd contraption made from jelly and junk and brought me to the surface near a shipping lane. Never seen one of them since. Sometimes I wonder if I dreamed it.

Deep Merfolk live at the oceans’ bottom. Their translucent-blue skin and large eyes  may give a fright, but they are mainly peaceful. From the junk that collects at the bottom of the sea, they build elaborate structures and contraptions that would rival the best wizard’s constructs. Deep merfolk communities are often semi-nomadic, tending to gardens along the lava vents which can stretch for hundreds of miles. They harness giant sea crabs to carry their belongings, and if they can find them, gargantuan sea crabs to carry the entire village, houses and all.  While usually a quiet, laid-back race, deep merfolk will war over the best ‘trash spots’ under shipping lanes. Scores of war sea crabs are harnessed for these struggles, and the sea above will froth with the fury.

Dungeon World Build

Intelligent, group, amphibious, terrifying

8 hp, 2 armor

Attack, close, clenching jaw (d8)

Special Moves:

  • Build something amazing out of junk
  • Use light magic
  • Slip into the darkness.

Aquatic Peoples of the Brook and River

Today’s inspiration is two variations of a mermaid with stats for Dungeon World and Pathfinder. One is inspired by the Amazon River Dolphin and the other my own invention, a small mermaid suited for life in streams and brooks.


A woman washes her clothes near the river when a splash of water catches her eye. She barely misses the sight of a pink tail disappearing back into the muddy waters. The washing board drops from her hand as she turns to run, but she slows to look over her shoulder and catch the eye of the handsome man now standing on the shore.

Making their home in deep rivers and lakes, rivfolk possess the most magical abilities of all aquatic peoples. At night, rivfolk can turn their tails into legs; rivmen use this ability primarily to seduce human women. Some even believe that there are no rivmaids, and that the rivmen depend on human women to continue their species. All rivfolk act as guardians of the river they live in and will drown those who seek to harm it. Continue reading “Aquatic Peoples of the Brook and River”