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Average Lifespan: Varies
Native World: Varies
Average Adult Male Height: Varies
Average Adult Male Weight: Varies
Average Adult Female Height: Varies
Average Adult Female Weight: Varies
Shapeshifters are members of any race, born with a magical ability to transform into a specific animal. Shapeshifters discover their ability in many different ways, and some never even know. Most shapeshifters' abilities surface during puberty, at which time they change into their animal form at random, usually at the worst possible time. Most can gain control of this ability quickly, while others have been known to never figure it out.
The process of shapeshifting, depending on the shapeshifter, can cause some mild discomfort, but is usually not described as "painful", and can sometimes be completely painless. Adapting to living with a completely different physiology can be confusing and frustrating, and leads many to rarely or never shift, at least once they gain control of the ability.
Genetics factor somehow into whether or not one is born a shapeshifter, as having shapeshifting parents greatly increases the likelihood that a child will have the ability, though it does not guarantee it. Descendants of shapeshifters who do manifest the ability will usually have an alternate form closely related to the parents', though not necessarily the same species.
Always list and describe your base species as well as your shapeshifter's alternate form in your character sheet.