Changeling Disguise: Limits

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Just a very straightforward question that I'd like an answer to. What are the limits to a changeling's disguise? Can he plausibly become a warforged? Is he able to become a full genasi? Do his disguises melt away when he is knocked unconscious or falls asleep? Can he become a statue? Those kinds of questions.
I'm kind of a rookie at this, as you can see. I asked my DM but he wasn't sure either.
Yes, he can become a Warforged or a Genasi, but he cannot use any abilities of those races. He could possibly take the shape of a statue probably (DM fiat). The disguise does not say anything about what happens once a changeling is KOed, so that's DM fiat as well.

Happy Gaming
Just a very straightforward question that I'd like an answer to. What are the limits to a changeling's disguise?



They can take the appearance of any Medium Humanoid. They may only take the appearance. They gain no other features of the race they are mimicing. A Changeling Drow will not have Darkvision, a Changeling Dragonborn will not breathe fire, and a Changeling Dwarf is just as susceptible to forced movement as a Human. By far, the biggest limitation that Changelings face is not part of their disguise ability at all. It is the fact that, without investing in a Background or Feat or Theme, Changelings only speak Common. Personally, I think this is an uncorrected oversight, and Changelings in my games get to choose a single language for free in addition to common.

Can he plausibly become a warforged?



Warforged are Medium Humaoids, so yes, the Changeling can appear to be a Warforged. He gains none of the other traits of a warforged, however, so after a couple of days, the Changeling's need to eat or sleep will reveal his deception. He will also not weigh as much as a Warforged should. I would also increase the difficulty of the Bluff check to account for the fact that the Changeling needs to appear not to breathe.

Is he able to become a full genasi?



Genasi are Medium Humanoids, so yes. Again, he does not gain any abilities. So masquerading as a Water Genasi, and then having to hold one's breath when swimming underwater will be a big tip off that this Genasi is not what he appears to be.

Do his disguises melt away when he is knocked unconscious or falls asleep?



Nope, only death or effects that reveal shapeshifters will drop the disguise.

Can he become a statue?



This is a little murkier, but I would probably allow it. Again, I would increase the difficulty of the Bluff check to account for the fact that statues don't breathe or move. Depending on how long the Changeling needed to hold their pose without moving, I would also call for an Endurance check.

Thank you very much, that was exactly what I needed to know. I agree with your language sentiment and wish I did not need the bg/theme I chose to account for that 1st level :/ I never thought of breathing and I'll bring that up to my DM. and by plausibly, I mean can the changeling's skin actually take on the texture of the warforged/shardmind/statue? Or when touched does he feel like flesh?

I would think it would still feel like flesh, if not your saying the changeling can change the composition of its body to anything (metal/stone/fire/ext) which seems a bit drastic


Also if you are concerned about languages and have a theme to spare; Scholar basically lets you know all the major languages at lvl 10 (and can easily argue with a DM to just let it be all languages)

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Thank you Clive! I'll look into the BG Scholar.

SO just don't let people touch me....okay I can do that.
Thank you very much, that was exactly what I needed to know. I agree with your language sentiment and wish I did not need the bg/theme I chose to account for that 1st level :/ I never thought of breathing and I'll bring that up to my DM. and by plausibly, I mean can the changeling's skin actually take on the texture of the warforged/shardmind/statue? Or when touched does he feel like flesh?



Another murky area. The Changeling can probably firm up their skin a bit, but it probably won't hold up to prolonged contact with someone familiar with Warforged and Shardminds. There will be other problems with copying the statue ("Why is this statue warm to the touch, when every other stone around here is cold?" "Why is it wearing clothes?").

But this is true of almost any disguise a Changeling will adopt. Other props will be needed to help the disguise hold up to prolonged scrutiny. The fewer differences betweeen the truth and the disguise, the easier the disguise is to maintain. For example, I have a Changeling Half Elf Bard. Thanks to lots of multiclassing, she can easily pass off one of her powers as being from the Dilettante feature. A Changeling Dwarf has a harder time of it. He would need boots that prevent forced movement, a necklace that helps him resist poison, headwear that lets him see in dim light, and armor that lets him second wind as a minor.

Good point. And... last one, probably. What about monsters? Is it a higher DC to crash a party as a ghoul or zombie? Or to be a medusa or harpy?
Read the rules for the bluff skill, it will talk about the DCs there.  Changelings essentially have a bonus to their bluff skill for assuming disguise.
Some monsters would work, I have turned into a Mindflayer a time or two
Undead monsters are iffy, because I would find it hard that Changlings can At-Will make their skin rot (They prob could make it look like it has) but the lack of smell and running puss might ruin it.

Also for some monsters the DM might call foul, you very well could look like a harpy, but the DM might decide that Harpies can naturaly tell their own (Scent/ pack instincts)  

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Changelings also dont change their clothing or equipment either.

It only says appearance, so doesn't cover smells. You could look like a zombie or harpy, but not smell like one.


i think a changeling turning into a zombie to fool a bunch of zombies would be entertaining though.    
Changelings present a lot of areas where the GM would need to make a ruling specific for the group. Like it was said, it WOULD be entertaining to see a Changeling appear as a zombie to try to get past/fool them.

In my games, I typically say that "appearance" represents to some degree all senses. So a Changeling could not only visually look like a zombie, but also have a bit of a stench. The same thing would be for feeling a bit like the race emulated. And sounding like a particular voice (I imagine that the various races have particular vocal 'styles' that could be emulated). In all cases it is only as good as the Changeling's Bluff check, of course.

This all comes from the extrapolation that the Perception skill is not a measure of how well a creature can SEE something, but rather how well it can NOTICE something (from whatever physical sense). I (and our group) like to take the skills as a more general approach to how a creature can accomplish things rather than a specific list of things a creature can do. Bluff is a measure of one creature's ability to fool others. Insight is (among other things) the ability of a creature to recognize a Bluff. The skills don't really say exactly HOW the creatures do this; that's up to the players/GM to 'flesh it out'. It is just a generalization of the fact that it is being done.