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Broken ones, also known as animal men, were a variety of humanoids whose bodies had been spliced with animals through means of scientific or magical experiments gone wrong,[2][3] a powerful curse, and, on rare occasions, by the Dark Powers.[1]


These creatures more or less looked human, but their bodies were warped and twisted. The non-human parts of their bodies were clearly visible to any who could see them. By their very nature, the features of a broken one's body varied by individual, however, they never displayed traits of intelligent nonhuman races. For example, those merged with a scorpion might have a chitinous shell or a poisonous stinger, while those merged with a rat might have a long whip-like tail and wiry whiskers.[2][3]


The habits of broken ones were often dictated by whatever animal they were spliced with.[2][3]


Two broken ones, displaying traits of a lion and a scorpion.

Common traits among broken ones were stamina greater than that of a human and a regenerative ability. Some, known as greater broken ones, were physically superior and healed at an even faster rate.[2][3]

Broken ones also had varied abilities that were derived from whatever animal they were spliced with, such as darkvision or keen hearing. The common variety of broken one generally only had one such ability, while greater broken ones exhibited anywhere from one to four unique abilities.[2][3]


Besides using their animal traits to their advantage, broken ones were known to fight with actual weaponry.[2][3]


These creatures were typically reclusive, but sought out their own kind. Whenever a society of them was found, it was of a tribal nature and consisted of ten to sixty broken ones of the common variety. There was often a greater broken one in these societies who acted as their leader. These societies did manufacture their own items for the purpose of survival, but they would be of no interest to outsiders.[2][3]

When possible, broken ones would seek out the ones responsible for their creation and try to destroy them.[2][3]


The dietary nature of broken ones varied depending upon whatever animal they were spliced with. Some could be strict carnivores, while others were herbivores.[2][3]


Broken ones typically dwelled in secluded areas far from human societies, such as in dense woods or rocky wastes.[2][3]


Broken ones typically spoke whatever languages they knew prior to their transformation,[1][2][3] in some limited capacity.[1] Due to their deformities, it was not uncommon for them to speak in a heavily accented or slurred manner. A small number of them were also capable of speaking with whatever animal they had been spliced with.[2][3]


Broken ones occasionally attacked human caravans or villages. This was typically out of self-defense, a need for supplies, or simply a desire for vengeance for some wrong. Sometimes evil sages or wizards would capture broken ones to study them.[2][3]

Rumors & Legends

According to rumors, some broken ones were the results of failed attempts at the spells polymorph, reincarnate, and resurrection.[2][3]


See Also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Beth Bostic, et al. (January, 2004). Denizens of Dread. Edited by Dale Donovan. (White Wolf Publishing), p. 41. ISBN 1-58846-951-4.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 30. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 Template:Cite book/Monstrous Compendium Ravenloft Appendix