Glowers are a race of sentient crystal that communicate primarily using light. They can speak privately (one at a time, up to 50 miles line of sight) at long distances or in a group using a series of flashing lights of varying colors and intensities. Some develop further capabilities and can create pictures to entertain or display information. They are unable to physically move but can feed off insects and small animals that they attract and kill using light. They are highly social and have a cooperative arrangement with dwarves and stone keepers who provide food, shelter and stimulus in return for their light and communication abilities.
Cost -8
ST 0 [-100] IQ 12 [40]
SM -4 HP 10 [20]
Advantages: 360 degree Vision (Panoptic 1, +20%) [30]; Absolute Timing [2]; Chameleon (Controllable, +20%) [7]; Digital Mind [5];  Doesn't Sleep [20]; Illumination [1]; Immunity to Metabolic Hazards [30];  Injury Tolerance (No Blood, No Head; No Neck; Unliving) [37]; Innate Attack (Burn, Var, +5%)  1d [6]; Language (Glower, Native) [6]; Laser Communication (AA of Signals, Color Changes) [3]; Photographic Memory [10]; Reduced Consumption 3 [6]; Signals, Blinker (AA of Signals, Color Changes) [3]; Signals, Color Changes (Video, +40%) [21];Telescopic Vision 4 [8]; Temperature Tolerance (cold) 2 [2]; Vibration Sense (Air) [10];
Disadvantages:  Dead Broke [-25]; Fragile, Brittle [-15]; Gregarious [-10]; No Legs (Portable) [-30]; No Manipulators [-50]; Mute [-25]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-10]; Vulnerability (Sonics *2) [-10].
Quirk: Gossiper [-1].
Skills: Innate Attack (Beam) (E) DX [1]
Features: DX (No Fine Manipulators, -40%); HP (Density, -10%); ST (Density, -10%; No Manipulators, -40%)

Optional Abilities

Some learn to add the Video modifier (+40%) or even Sensie and Burst to Laser Communication. Illusion (Visual only, -30%). [18], Create Visible Light [10/level], useful for brighter illumination. Innate Attack can have the Accuracy modifier added to it, though most rely on the ACC bonus from Telescopic vision.  Compartmentalized Mind (No Mental Separation, -20%) [40/level];


  • Entertainers: These are primarily members of wealthy households but are sometimes companions to Bards and other artists or work in an Inn. They learn advanced light manipulation abilities such as Illusion (Visual only) and entertainment skills such as artist (Light).
  • Librarians: While all glowers like information and stories these are especially dedicated to gathering them. They put a number of points in various knowledge skills, sometimes learn advanced multitasking (Compartmentalized Mind) and how to create memory crystals. They favor centralized locations where they can directly communicate with multiple glowers.
  • Sentinels: The most common profession or role of a glower is to watch the area they are placed in for trouble and to aid those who ask for help. They provide light to see by, can communicate through simple light color changes or blinking, and can attack with their light beams. They generally avoid conflict as they are unable to dodge or avoid attacks. Traits: Higher Innate Attack (Beam) and Observation skills and may upgrade Telescopic Vision.

Physical Appearance

Glowers are small dense crystals roughly cylindrical or oval in shape. Mature adults are 10" tall and have very high ST and HP for their size due to their dense material and structure. They weigh 12 to 14 pounds so are also heavy for their size. They can change color at will and frequently do so, both as they communicate but also as a reflection of their mood. They are capable of blending into the background, though rarely do so. In fact they like to draw attention to themselves so favor brighter and shifting colors. Some think this is for social attention but ts really a subconscious activity that is part of how they attract food.


Glowers are considered to be valuable property (like animals) by dwarven culture and mostly unknown elsewhere. Among themselves they are considerable gossipers and quite curious.
Since they can see in all directions at the same time messages can be sent to any individual without otherwise needing to get their attention first. They can hear and understand normal conversation but being unable to speak are rarely able to participate. However they will happily gossip about what they have heard with other glowers. For that reason glowers may not be allowed in private areas.
They are highly intelligent, probably due to the difficulties and precision inherent in their communication and learning how to attract food before killing it. However being immobile or dependent on others for mobility and having no hands they are pretty limited to just talking among themselves.


Gesture to understand basic signals, full language for in depth.The Glower language is a rich one that uses intensity for emphasis, colors for tone or mood and patterns for words. It is quite a sight to watch for those who do not understand it and they have learned to sing in ways that people can enjoy the song even if they have no understanding of the content. Entertainers take this to a whole other level with holographic projections (Illusion) or advanced color changes (Video on Signals, Blinker) which not only can create fantastic abstract light shows but detailed pictures.

Memory Crystals

Glowers can learn how to grow and excrete colored crystals. These are essentially books but can only be read by glowers or those with specialized abilities (stone keepers, and some magic for example). While the audience is thus limited the advantage is that crystals can store a lot of information in small crystals.

Role in the Dwarven Society

Glowers are generally considered pets and work animals, though most dwarves know they are sentient. Glowers are very prevalent in typical settlements and used as lighting for streets and homes, vermin control, and security. They are typically contained in glass ceases, effectively being lanterns though some are more decorative like chandeliers. Glowers should always be kept in sight of at least one other glower to keep them happy.
  • Personal Lanterns: Glowers are often carried around to provide light on patrol or when traveling. They miss chatting with other glowers when used this way but the sights they see and hear provide gossip and information they can share when they are back home. They provide as much light as a torch or a narrow 10 yard beam. Not only are they superior to lanterns due to not needing fuel and providing better illumination they can act as sentries, especially if the holder knows their language. Also a portable bug zapper!
  • Street Lights: Glowers doing this duty not only provide light to streets and building exteriors but they act as town watch as well. They can provide directions and information to those who understand them, or basic info to those who don't through simple signals. They can kill vermin, shoot troublemakers (though they prefer not to as they are extremely vulnerable to counter attack) and alert and direct the town watch to trouble.
  • Interior Lighting: Glowers are also used indoors to provide lighting, vermin control, and even entertainment. If in an enclosed area they should be in line of sight of a window or another glower who is. Solitary glowers tend towards depression.
  • Librarians: Mostly interact with stone keepers and are typically housed in a dedicated building with lots of windows. Shier role is to gather information and transcribe it to memory crystals.
  • Watchers: Specialize in long range communication and will memorize the location of distant towers and important locations. Their role is to facilitate communication between remote parts of a settlement (such as the walls) or between settlements. Between settlement communication is typically done above ground using guard towers or with glowers assigned to the trains that move between settlements.

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