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Npc, John Henry, “Steelhammer”

John Henry
  • Alias: Steelhammer
  • Gender: Male
  • Race: Human
  • Occupation: Legendary Steel Drivin’ Man
  • Religion: Spiritual, draws strength from ancestral beliefs
  • Allies: The working class, fellow laborers, folk heroes
  • Enemies: Industrialists, those who devalue human labor
  • Abode/Base of operations: Roams from place to place, found wherever his hammer strikes
  • Nationality: American
  • Languages: English
  • Alignment: Lawful Good
  • Affiliation(s): Brotherhood of Labor, Defenders of Traditional Skills
  • Significant others: Polly Ann, his beloved and source of inspiration

John Henry, a larger-than-life figure, is a man of tremendous strength and resilience. Born into a world of railroad construction and industrialization, he is determined to prove that human skill and tenacity can triumph over machines. With bulging muscles and a powerful physique, John Henry embodies the embodiment of sheer might and unyielding spirit.

Driven by his unwavering belief in the power of human labor, John Henry undertakes the backbreaking task of competing against the steam-powered drill in a race to prove his worth. He works tirelessly, swinging his mighty hammer with unmatched precision and force, challenging the relentless advance of technology. His mission is not only to defeat the machine but also to reclaim the dignity and honor of manual labor in the face of progress.

Despite the odds stacked against him, John Henry’s determination is unshakable. His resounding hammer strikes echo through the mountains as he labors with unwavering resolve. He strives not only to emerge victorious but also to inspire others with his indomitable spirit. John Henry becomes a symbol of courage and defiance, a hero who fights not only for himself but for all those who toil under the weight of progress.

In his quest, John Henry seeks to achieve recognition for the value of human labor and the preservation of traditional skills in an era dominated by mechanization. He yearns for a world where the strength of the human spirit can continue to flourish, unburdened by the encroachment of technology. With each mighty swing of his hammer, he champions the cause of humanity and stands as a beacon of hope for those who fear being left behind in the wake of progress.

John Henry’s legend lives on, inspiring generations with tales of his legendary battle against the steam drill. His story serves as a reminder of the power of human determination and the enduring spirit that resides within each of us, urging us to overcome the seemingly insurmountable and forge our own path, no matter the challenges we face.

John Henry

Npc, John Henry, "Steelhammer"

Medium humanoid (human), lawful good

Armor Class 16 (natural armor) Hit Points 150 (20d8 + 60) Speed 30 ft.

22 (+6)14 (+2)18 (+4)12 (+1)16 (+3)14 (+2)

Saving Throws Str +10, Con +8 Skills Athletics +10, Intimidation +7 Senses passive Perception 13 Languages Common, Dwarvish Challenge 12 (8,400 XP)

Legendary Resistance (3/Day). If he fails a saving throw, he can choose to succeed instead.

Brute Force. John Henry’s melee weapon attacks deal an extra 1d6 damage.


Multiattack. He makes two attacks: one with his mighty hammer and one with his powerful fists.

  • Mighty Hammer. Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 16 (2d8 + 6) bludgeoning damage.
  • Powerful Fists. Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (1d8 + 6) bludgeoning damage.
  • Roaring Shout (Recharge 5-6). John Henry lets out a thunderous shout, forcing all creatures within a 30-foot radius to make a DC 15 Constitution saving throw or be stunned until the end of their next turn.

Legendary Actions

John Henry can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time, and only at the end of another creature’s turn. John Henry regains spent legendary actions at the start of his turn.

  • Mighty Strike. John Henry makes a powerful swing with his hammer. He makes one Mighty Hammer attack.
  • Inspiring Presence. John Henry rallies his allies, granting them advantage on their next attack roll or saving throw.
  • Resolute Defense. John Henry braces himself, gaining resistance against all damage until the start of his next turn.


  • Mighty hammer
  • Worker’s gloves
  • Iron boots
  • Symbolic railroad spikes


John Henry stands tall and muscular, his body hardened by years of labor. His skin has an unusual, tough texture, resembling natural armor. His mighty hammer, a symbol of his strength and determination, gleams with power. His eyes are filled with a steely resolve, reflecting his unwavering dedication to his cause.

Surrounded by the echoes of the railroad and the scent of freshly laid tracks, John Henry stands in a vast open field. The sound of clanging metal and the rumble of locomotives in the distance create an atmosphere of industry and progress. His mood is resolute, ready to face any challenge that comes his way and defend the ideals he holds dear.

John Henry’s unwavering determination stems from his desire to protect the rights and well-being of the working class. He fights against injustice and exploitation, embodying the spirit of resilience and the power of the human spirit.

Currently in the World

John Henry
By Ken Thomas – website of photographer), Public Domain,

John Henry stands tall and sturdy, his muscular frame a testament to years of hard labor. His dark, weathered skin bears the marks of countless hours working under the scorching sun. He has a strong, square jaw and piercing eyes that radiate determination and resilience. His hair, once jet black, now carries streaks of gray, symbolizing the wisdom and experience he has gained throughout his legendary journey.

In his presence, there is an undeniable aura of power and strength. He carries himself with a commanding poise, each movement deliberate and purposeful. Whether swinging his mighty hammer or engaging in a heartfelt conversation, he exudes a captivating charisma that draws people towards him.

John Henry currently finds himself in the heart of the industrial landscape. Towering smokestacks and sprawling factories surround him, the constant hum of machinery filling the air. Despite the noise and chaos, his mood remains unwavering. A fiery determination burns within him, fueled by his unwavering belief in the value of human labor and the fight against the dehumanization of workers.

Though surrounded by the trappings of modernization, John Henry remains connected to his roots, never forgetting his humble origins as a laborer. He carries the spirit of the working class within him, and it is this unyielding spirit that drives him forward, striving to achieve a world where the dignity and worth of every worker are recognized and celebrated.

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