Unearthed Arcana: Races of Ravnica Analysis

For the month of August, the Unearthed Arcana series highlight the Ravnica races.

I’ve been a bit late. Okay, a bunch of late. I didn’t notice when this Unearthed Arcana installment was released and, when I did, I was busy with other things. But now I’m here so let’s begin.


Loxodons are humanoid elephants. That’s pretty badass on its own, if you ask me.

  • Ability Score Increase. A nice +2 to Constitution and a +1 to Wisdom. Apart from being good ability scores to add bonuses to, it kinda feels logical flavor wise.
  • Size. Loxodons are pretty big. But it’s a secret rule for 5th Edition to avoid playable races larger than Medium. I don’t mind it because there’s always an extra trait that tries to express the big size of a race.
  • Powerful Build. And that’s the standard trait “big” races get.
  • Speed. The regular speed of 30 feet. Nothing unusual here.
  • Loxodon Bravery. Advantage versus being frightened is nice. I consider frightened a status that can be encountered often, so this trait is going to help.
  • Natural Armor. It makes sense. Also, 13 + Dexterity isn’t broken. However, it’s hard for me to imagine this trait playing an important role with any class.
  • Mason’s Proficiency. It’s expected, since their lore mentions they are good at working with stone.
  • Stonecunning. As with the above, it adds to the flavor.
  • Keen Smell. Elephants have incredible sense of smell. I like that Loxodons get that too. Plus, it’s a good trait.
  • Languages. Common.

Loxodons aren’t bad. They have a nice set of traits that cover various situations. I could see some sort of an attack using their tusks or trunk, but that’s not a huge problem.

Simic Hybrid

One of the Guilds of Ravnica, the Simic, have a thing for experimentation and improving the biology of things. And what happens when the Simic start working on humanoids? Good question. That’s where the Simic Hybrids come in.

  • Ability Score Increase. A +2 to Constitution and a +1 to anywhere else you like. For me, both increases make sense.
  • Size. Medium as expected.
  • Speed. 30 feet. It could be one of the things that would change among Hybrids, though.
  • Darkvision. Regular, 60 feet darkvision.
  • Animal Enhancement. At levels 1 and 5 you can choose an animal feature. When you get your 5th level enhancement, you can choose a 1st level one instead.
    • Level 1
      • Manta Glide. You grow ray-like wings that let you glide instead of fall. There’s a limit to how much you can glide though.
      • Nimble Climber. I think you can guess by the name that you get a climbing speed equal to your walking speed.
      • Underwater Adaptation. Similar to the above. You can breathe underwater and get a swimming speed equal to your walking speed.
    • Level 5
      • Grappling Appendages. You grow extra hands that give you a way to attack and, if you hit, attempt to grapple. That’s cool. However, they can’t do anything that requires precision, including using weapons.
      • Carapace. You get a +1 to AC if you’re not wearing heavy armor. That plays a role in so many character. Also, I get the reason behind the choice not to stack this with heavy armor.
      • Acid Spit. You get to spit acid to a target within 30 feet of you. I don’t really like it, to be honest. The damage looks okay ish but the target doesn’t take half damage on a successful save and there’s no status you can impose on them. Plus, it costs 1 whole action.
  • Languages. Common and Elvish. Okay I guess.

The idea of the Simic Hybrid is amazing. However, I feel its implementation is lacking a bit. The Animal Enhancement trait is a really awesome idea but it could be a bit better. Another interesting idea would be making size and speed a variable in the whole adaptability too, though it would increase the complexity a bit.


I remember the Vedalken from when Magic: The Gathering as blue and very smart people, that can excel at anything they may try to do. I’m glad to see their description hasn’t really changed.

  • Ability Score Increase. Unsurprisingly, Intelligence gets a +2 and Wisdom a +1. As I said, Vedalken are very smart people.
  • Size. Medium.
  • Speed. A speed of 30 feet.
  • Vedalken Dispassion. Advantage on Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma saving throws. This is a really strong trait. Gnomes get a similar trait, Gnome Cunning, but this one is an upgrade because it’s not limited to magic.
  • Tireless Precision. Another good trait. You gain proficiency with a skill(choosing fromArcana,
    History, Investigation, Medicine, Performance, and
    Sleight of Hand) and a tool. On top of that, you add a 1d4 on your roll, when using the chosen skill or tool.
  • Languages. I’m surprised Vedalken know only Common.

Overall. I’m pleased with what the Vedalken have to offer. However, I can’t keep thinking that something’s missing.


Viashino are humanoid reptiles. Some Magic: The Gathering art present depict them as alligators standing on two feet, but others give them a more snake like appearance. Both versions look cool.

  • Ability Score Increase. A +2 to Dexterity and a +1 to Strength. Flavor wise it makes sense. If it was the other way around it would still make sense.
  • Size. Medium.
  • Speed. 30 feet.
  • Bite. A regular bite that deals 1d4 + Strength piercing damage. See, if the +2 was granted to Strength this trait would be better.
  • Lashing Tail. This one allows you to strike someone back after they hit you, using your reaction. You get to deal 1d4 + Strength slashing damage.
  • Wiry Frame. You gain proficiency with either Acrobatics or Stealth. Not a bad trait. I can see Stealth being the popular pick.
  • Languages. Common and Draconic. I really like that Viashino get to know Draconic. It adds to the flavor.

I like the Viashino. I think they are a good pick for melee classes, because of their two melee attack traits. A trait I could see them have, but they don’t, is some sort of natural armor.

Overall, I like the Ravnica races. They have a lot of flavor, as they should. All of them could use a bit more work but they’re close to being a finished product. On another note, we probably got a glimpse of the lore that will be available in the Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica.

You can read the full article here and download the PDF here.

And until next time, have fun!

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