NEW VARIANTS AND BACKGROUND FOR TIEFLINGS
edited by Robert "Bobjester" Weber.
Heirs to an ancient, infernal bloodline, tieflings have no realms of their own but instead live within human kingdoms and cities. They are descended from human nobles who bargained with dark powers, and long ago their empire subjugated half the world. But the empire was cast down into ruin, and tieflings were left to make their own way in a world that often fears and resents them.
Eons ago, the leaders of the human empire of Bael Turath made pacts with devils to solidify their hold over its enormous territory. Those humans became the first tieflings, and they governed their empire in the name of their infernal masters. In time, Bael Turath came into conflict with Arkhosia, the ancient empire of Arcanadaemons, and decades of warfare left both empires, including Bael Turath was thrown down in ruin.
Tieflings are the heirs of the surviving noble dynasties that ruled the empire. Their bloodline is tainted by their diabolical connections, passing to their descendants through all generations. In many ways, they are human; they can have children with humans, for example, but their offspring are always tieflings.
Centuries of other races’ distrust and outright hatred have made tieflings self-reliant and often too willing to live up to the stereotypes imposed on them. As a race without a homeland, tieflings know that they have to make their own way in the world and that they have to be strong to survive. They are not quick to trust anyone who claims to be a friend. However, when a tiefling’s companions demonstrate that they trust him or her, the tiefling quickly learns to extend the same trust to them. And once a tiefling gives someone trust and loyalty, the tiefling is a firm friend and ally for life.
Although the nobles of Bael Turath subjugated themselves to devils, most present-day tieflings give little thought to gods or patrons, preferring to look out for themselves. Therefore, they do not often follow the path of the divine; tiefling clerics or paladins are rare but possible as player-characters.
Tieflings are not numerous. Sometimes a tiefling merchant clan descended from a Bael Turath dynasty settles as a group in a land where wealth can purchase safety and comfort. But most tieflings are born outside such hidden dynasties and grow up in the roughest quarters of human cities and towns. These tieflings often become swindlers, thieves, or crime lords, who carve out a niche for themselves amid their squalid surroundings.
Since not all tieflings come from the same outer plane, some have traits that differ from those in the Player's Handbook. The DM may permit the following variants for your tiefling character, although Devil's Tongue, Hellfire, and Winged are mutually exclusive.
- Appearance. Your tiefling might not look like other tieflings. Rather than having the physical characteristics described in the PHB, choose 1d4+1 of the following features: small horns; fangs or sharp teeth; forked tongue; catlike eyes; six fingers on each hand; goat-like legs; cloven hooves; forked tail; leathery or scaly skin; red or dark blue skin; cast no shadow or reflection; exude a smell of brimstone.
- Feral. Your Intelligence score increases by 1, and your Dexterity score increases by 2. This trait replaces the Ability Score Increase trait.
- Devil's Tongue. You know the vicious mockery cantrip. When you reach 3rd level, you can cast the charm person spell as a 2nd level spell once with this trait. When you reach 5th level, you can cast the enthrall spell once with this trait. You must finish a long rest to cast these spells once again with this trait. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for them. This trait replaces the Infernal Legacy trait.
- Hellfire. Once you reach 3rd level, you can cast the burning hands spell once per day as a 2nd level spell. This trait replaces the hellish rebuke spell of the Infernal Legacy trait.
- Winged. You have bat-like wings sprouting from your shoulder blades. You have a flying speed of 30 feet. This trait replaces the Infernal Legacy trait.
Deception and Persuasion
Disguise kit, one type of gaming set.
one of your choice.
fine clothes, disguise kit, a pouch with 15 gp.
False Identity. You have created multiple identities that includes documentation, established acquaintances, and you also have access to disguises that allow you to assume those personae.
Akmenos, Amnon, Barakas, Damakos, Ekemon, Iados, Kairon, Leucis, Melech, Morthos, Pelaios, Skamos, Therai.
Akta, Bryseis, Damaia, Ea, Kallista, Lerissa, Makaria, Nemeia, Orianna, Phelaia, Rieta Some young tieflings, striving to find a place in the world, choose a name that signifies a concept and then try to embody the concept. For some, the chosen name is a noble quest. For others, it’s a grim destiny.
Art, Carrion, Chant, Despair, Fear, Gladness, Hope, Ideal, Music, Nowhere, Open, Poetry, Quest, Random, Reverence, Sorrow, Torment, Weary.
You have always had a way with people, instinctively knowing how to deceive them. You know what makes them tick, you can, if you cared to, tease out their hearts' desires after a few minutes of conversation, and with a few leading questions you can read them like they were children's books. It's a useful talent, and one that you're perfectly willing to use for your advantage.
You also understand power and privilege, but only as an extraplanar being stuck in the Prime Material Plane. Here on the Prime Material, you must search your own way, get your hands dirty, and generally put up with all manner of discomfiting accommodations, without the benefits of power, or privilege.
Tieflings are colorful characters who must conceal their true selves behind the masks they construct. They reflect what people want to see, what they want to believe, and how they see the world. But their true selves are sometimes plagued by an uneasy conscience, an old enemy, or deep-seated trust issues.
Cunning, disquieting, imposing, mysterious, proud, rebellious, self-reliant, sinister, sly, unconventional.
[b]d12[/b]|[b]Tiefling Personality Traits[/b]
1|I fall in and out of love easily, always pursuing someone.
2|Flattery is my preferred trick for getting what I want.
3|I lie about almost everything, even when there's no good reason to.
4|Sarcasm and insults are my weapons of choice.
5|My eloquent flattery makes everyone I talk to feel like the most wonderful and important person in the world.
6|The common folk love me for my kindness and generosity.
7|No one could doubt by looking at my regal bearing that I am a cut above the unwashed masses.
8|I take great pains to always look my best and follow the latest fashions.
9|I don't like to get my hands dirty, and I won't be caught dead in unsuitable accommodations.
10|Despite my noble birth, I do not place myself above other folk. We all have the same blood.
11|My favor, once lost, is lost forever.
12|If you do me an injury, I will crush you, ruin your name, and salt your fields.
1|Respect. Respect is due tome because of my position, but all people regardless of station deserve to be treated with dignity. (Good)
2|Responsibility. It is my duty to respect the authority of those above me, just as those below me must respect mine. (Lawful)
3|Independence. I am a free spirit – no one tells me what to do. (Chaotic)
4|Power. If I can attain more power, no one will tell me what to do. (Evil)
5|Creativity. I never use the same persona twice. (Chaotic)
6|Aspiration. I'm determined to make something of myself. (Any)
7|Family. Blood runs thicker than water. (Any)
8|Noble Obligation. It is my duty to protect and care for the people beneath me. (Good)
1|I deceived a powerful, evil entity and must work to ensure that this entity never crosses paths with me or those I care about.
2|I will face any challenge to regain my family honor.
3|My house's alliance with a powerful entity must be sustained at all costs.
4|I owe everything to the fiend who gave me power – a horribly evil entity who's rotting in Hell.
5|I am forever chained to a fiend, but now I seek redemption and a way out of this pact.
6|Nothing is more important than the other members of my family.
7|A powerful entity killed someone I love. Some day I'll have my revenge.
8|I am in love with the heir of a rival family, that my family despises.
9|My loyalty to my pact giver is unwavering.
10|The common folk must see me as a hero of the people.
1|I can't resist a pretty face.
2|I secretly believe that everyone is beneath me.
3|I'm always in debt. I spend my ill-gotten gains faster than I can bring it in.
4|I hide a truly scandalous secret that could ruin my family forever.
5|No one can fool me the way I fool others.
6|I too often hear veiled insults and threats in every word addressed to me, and I'm quick to anger.
7|I'm too greedy for my own good. I can't resist taking a risk if there's power involved.
8|I have an insatiable desire for carnal pleasures.
9|I can't resist stealing the power of those who are more powerful than me.
10|In fact, the world does revolve around me.
11|I'll run away if it will preserve my own life, betraying everyone else in mortal danger.
12|By my words and actions, I often bring shame to my family.