In Mystara, there are no natural Half-Elves. The offspring of a Human and Elf paring will make for either a human or an elf. But after reading the Elves of Alfheim Gazeteer we find this is not entirely true, there are half elves, but since the Elf gene is dominant on the female side, the families of human and elves have some complicated results. The Elves of Alfheim says the following:

  • elven traits are inherited through the female line.
  • the union of a human female and an elf male is always human
    • the male spawn of these unions are always still-born
  • the union of a female elf and a male human has two results
    • if female, the child is human
    • if male, the child is an elf.
  • the female human with an elf mother will have the potential to bear elf children of either sex.
  • the humans and elves of these unions will have some appearance of both parents.

So with those rules and some Punnet squares, you can map out quite few possibilities. And reveal genetic destinies that are not articulated in the book. The children of these unions are half-elves in the genetic sense, but they have a much more complicated genetic layout then the simple blending of half-elves in other settings. As far as how the rules are applied to the offspring, they are either human or elf. The strong and weak blood designation is for the determination of cosmetic differences and the probability of their own children being stillborn. These rules are an expansion of the work that was already laid down by David Knott on the Mystara Message board and is available on the Pandius website. I finished the job he started and now have some actionable rules for a family with mixed human and elven ancestry. There’s some grim genetics in there and I believe for most elves, having humans in your ancestry would be seen as a curse because of the increased likelihood of still-born children.

MotherFatherChild (d4)
elfelf1-2 : female elf
3-4 : male elf
humanhuman1-2 : female human
3-4 : male human
elfhuman1-2 : human female with strong elven blood
3-4 : elf male with human blood
humanelf1-2 : human female with weak elven blood
3-4 : stillborn male
humanelf with
human blood
1-2 : human female with weak elven blood
3-4 : human male
human with
strong elven blood
elf with
human blood
1 : female elf
2 : male elf with human blood
3 : female human with weak elven blood
4 : male human
human with
weak elven blood
elf with
human blood
1 : female human with weak elven blood
2 : male human
3 : female elf
4: male elf with human blood
elfelf with
human blood
1-2 : female elf
3-4 : male elf with human blood
human with
strong elven blood
human1 : female human with strong elven blood
2 : male elf with human blood
3 : female human
4 : male human
human with
strong elven blood
elf1 : female elf
2 : male elf
3 : human female with weak elven blood
4 : stillborn male
human with
weak elven blood
human1 : female human
2 : male human
3 : female human with strong elven blood
4 : male elf with human blood
human with
weak elven blood
elf1 : female human with weak elven blood
2 : stillborn male
3 : female elf
4 : male elf

If your PC is a female human with strong elven blood, roll twice on the elven traits table.

If your PC is a female human with weak elven traits, roll once on the elven traits table.

If your PC is a male elf with human traits, roll once on the human traits table.

RollElven Traits
1pointed ears
2elven height
3fair skinned
4elven lifespan
5elven eyes (infravision)
6slight build
7slanted elven eyes
8roll twice
RollHuman Traits
1human lifespan
2bearded
3rounded ears
4male pattern baldness
5human eyes (no infravision)
6tall
7body hair
8roll twice

So now that I have laid out the system, let’s take a quick look at our three half elves we have in the comic.

Terra and Tulla
I have specified them as half sisters, and I decided to draw them black. There’s an unfortunate lack of representation of black folk in the official Mystara material, with the Tanagoro from the Serpent Peninsula being the most prominent ones. Also, there is an elf clan, called the Sheyallia that are elves that have African skin and features. So that is where their skin color comes from.
Their Grandma on their mother’s side was a Tanagoro from the Serpent Peninsula.
Their Grandfather on their mother’s side was a Sheyallia Elf
Their Mother was Tanagoro with weak elven blood. She traveled to Karamekios and had two husbands.
The first husband was a Thyatian, whose child was Tulla, human female
The second husband was a Callarii Elf, whose child was Tera, elf female

Hacklore Killjoy
Hacklore’s father was Traladarian.
Hacklore’s mother was a Callarii Elf.
This resulted in Hacklore technically being an Elf with human blood. He’s tall, has stunted ears and has human eyes without infravision, so he thinks he’s human, but he may change his mind when everyone starts growing old around him.