Tiefling

Tieflings, in the eyes of many, are a travesty against nature. They’re the combination of “regular” humanoids, usually humans, and fiendish creatures who at some point left their mark on mortal life, either through corruption or direct procreation. Tieflings are more common in societies who tend towards evil, as fiendish creatures are more tolerated there. Elsewhere, they’re often ostracized for their nature, as everyone around them automatically assume that they are evil.

Tieflings see themselves as the victim of some cosmic joke or cruel prank. They’re marked by the deeds of a foolish ancestor who engaged with powers beyond the ken of mortals. Now, the tieflings carry the scars of that liaison physically, as a brand of shame. They’re not the same as their fiendish ancestors and they retain the ability of most mortals to shape their own destiny, though many succumb to the lure of darkness. Few break the shackles of their fiendish heritage and gain divinity.

Hit Points

8

Size Medium

Speed 25 feet

Ability Boosts Intelligence

Charisma

Free

Ability Flaw

Constitution

Languages

  • Common
  • Either Abyssal, Daemonic, or Infernal
  • Additional languages equal to your Intelligence modifier (if it’s positive).
  • Choose from Abyssal, Celestial, Daemonic, Draconic, Infernal and any other languages to which you have access (such as the languages prevalent in your region).

Traits Tiefling

Humanoid

Darkvision

You can see in darkness and dim light just as well as you can see in bright light, though your vision in darkness is in black and white.

You Might…

  • Have a hard time opening up to others.
  • Bully others to get your way when in a hurry.
  • Feel that you’re smarter than everyone else.

Others Probably…

  • Think that you’re some sort of fiend or fiend-spawn.
  • Blame you when things go wrong and there’s no other obvious reason.
  • Think that you can’t be trusted, as your nature will eventually come back to haunt you.

Physical Description

Where most other races have some constant that defines them, the tieflings are an extremely varied bunch, as varied as their fiendish ancestors. Thus a tiefling descended from a barbarzu (bearded devil), for example, might have a bone-growth resembling a beard and red scales, while an unfortunate descendant of a lemure might have a face that resembles molten skin. These two tieflings, while both descended from devils native to Hell are clearly distinct from one another, and would bear no similarity to the otherworldly beauty of a tiefling descended from a succubus.

The mortal side of tieflings is both easier, and more difficult to predict. Most tieflings are born to humans, as the short-lived race tends to take shortcuts that longer-lived (or wiser) races would avoid. As such, tieflings descended from humans tend to range from just over 4½ feet to 6½ feet, with weights ranging from 95 to 220 lbs. Those from other races vary accordingly, such that a tiefling descended from a halfling would be considerably shorter and lighter, while one descended from an ogre would be a lot bigger.

Random Height and Weight
Gender Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 4 ft. 10 in. +2d10 in. 120 lbs. +(2d10x5 lbs.)
Female 4 ft. 5 in. +2d10 in. 85 lbs. +(2d10x5 lbs.)

Society

Tieflings are not considered to be a part of the society in which they grew up, due to their fiendish ancestry. They’re often bullied as children because they “look funny,” which can turn into fear and resentment as the tiefling grows older. As such, any given tiefling rarely stays where they grew up, choosing instead to wander the world, or settle elsewhere. There are civilizations and societies—the ones that turn to devil-worship and the like—that consider tieflings to be blessed. As such, any one tiefling could be relegated to a different social class depending on where they are, ranging from beggar or slave, to veneration as a god.

Tieflings rarely join up with others of their kind, as they do not have much in common, apart from the foolishness of some long-forgotten ancestor, but when they do they create their own “society within society.” These take the form of clubs or societies, kept secret from non-tieflings. These social organizations are run and ruled by tieflings whose forebears leaned towards lawful behaviour. Chaotic tieflings tend to create murderous cults with other evil tieflings, while those who lean towards good join or incite rebellions against oppressive regimes.

Alignment & Religion

Tieflings, by their very nature, tend toward evil. While they have the free will and freedom of choice of most mortal creatures, their fiendish blood draws forth their darkest tendencies. Tieflings have no particular inclinations towards law or chaos, in general, but the legacy of their ancestors influences them. As such, a descendant of a devil would tend towards lawful, while one descended from a demon would have a chaotic bend.

While not overly religious on a whole, some tieflings are drawn towards the divine, seeing in the gods an opportunity to redeem and better themselves. These tieflings can become strong believers in divine providence. In particular, gods that espouse a forgiving dogma or which teach redemption and betterment through trials of life have a great following among tiefling believers. Gods that teach revenge, violence, and destruction have a small but strong following among evil tieflings.

Names

Tieflings take names from the societies in which they were born or live. Sometimes these names are common first and last names and on occasion they are nicknames (though not always nice ones).

Tieflings that have thrown off the mantle of the societies in which they were born take names of their own choosing, though they avoid last names. Chosen names tend to be guttural with plenty of hissing, an ironic nod to their dark ancestry, which some tieflings cannot resist.

Sample Names

Allizah, Baru, Dellisar, Endie, Gorgron, Hessh, Indranna, Kasidra, Maldrek, Maris, Mellisan, Molos, Mordren, Nisha, Nokven, Sarvin, Shoremoth, Sushvenneh, Temerith, Voren, Zoren.

Tiefling Adventurers

Tieflings adventure for power and the opportunity to further themselves, and for a rare few, to experience companionship amongst those that accept them for who they are on the inside, rather than their fiendish exterior.

Typical backgrounds for a tiefling include artist, charlatan, criminal, hermit, and prisoner. Tieflings often become wizards or sorcerers who draw upon their natural fonts of magic, though a great many of the tieflings become rogues, fully embracing their darker sides.

Tiefling Heritages

With their varied ancestors and the history of fiendish interference in the lives of mortals, it is no surprise that there are many types of tieflings. Choose one of the following tiefling heritages at 1st level.

Grimspawn (Daemon Heritage)

Grimspawn hail from Daemon stock. They’re often fascinated by sickness, decay, and death in all forms. They are extremely thin, with sallow skin and milky white, dead, eyes. You gain a +1 status bonus to saves against diseases. In addition, if you roll a critical failure on a save against a disease, you get a failure instead.

Pitborn (Demon Heritage)

Pitborn vary immensely in size and stature, with no constant between them. Even the pitborn themselves vary daily between 1 and 2 inches in height and up to 5 pounds gained or lost. This instability and chaos is inherent in the pitborn, coming from your demonic ancestors. You’re constantly restless and notoriously difficult to control. You gain a +1 circumstance bonus to all saving throws against spells and effects with the incapacitation or mental traits. If you roll a success on a saving throw against an effect with both the incapacitation and mental effects, you get a critical success instead.

Hellspawn (Devil Heritage)

Hellspawn tend to be tall and muscular, and often have large horns, though these are not used in combat. You always keep a cool head, calmly assessing a situation, before unleashing a storm of violence. Because of your level-headedness, you make an effective leader, though others might find your methods ruthless.

Survey the Scene [three actions]

Prerequisite must take place on the first round of combat

You survey the terrain and the combatants, and issue orders to your allies. All allies within 20 feet of you gain a +1 circumstance bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls for their next round only.

Gobmaws (Barghest Heritage)

The gobmaws are a very particular type of tiefling, the result of crossing barghests with goblins. They’re far shorter and lighter than most tieflings, with a wiry build, and outsized mouths that give them a terrifying grin.

Toxic Breath [single action]

Frequency once per day

You let out a cloud of toxic gas that affects anyone within a 20-foot cone for a number of rounds equal to half your level. The target becomes sickened 1 unless it succeeds on a DC 10 + ½ your level Fortitude save. Success means that the target is only sickened for one round.

Tiefling Ancestry Feats

At 1st level, you gain one ancestry feat, and you gain an additional ancestry feat every 4 levels thereafter (at 5th, 9th, 13th, and 17th levels). As a tiefling, you select from among the following ancestry feats.

1st Level

Blood of the Rising Feat 1

Tiefling

Your ancestors eventually overcame the lure of evil, which has partially cleansed your bloodline. You can take aasimar racial feats, and you gain the aasimar trait, in addition to the tiefling and humanoid traits.

Fiendish Magic Feat 1

Tiefling

Your connection to the Outer Planes grants you a divine arcane spell, much like those of fiends. Choose one cantrip from the arcane spell list. You can cast this spell as an arcane innate spell at will. The cantrip is heightened to a spell level equal to half your level, rounded up.

Fiendish Resistance Feat 1

Tiefling

You have a remarkable adaptation to hot environments from ancestors who inhabited the outer planes. This grants fire resistance equal to half your level (minimum 1), and you gain horns. These add an extra die to any unarmed damage rolls that you make.

Intimidating Presence Feat 1

Tiefling

You know that your fiendish presence is unsettling to others and you use that to your advantage. You gain a +1 circumstance bonus on Intimidation checks whenever dealing with creatures who are good or neutral.

Outlander Feat 1

Tiefling

Knowledge and subterfuge runs through your veins. You gain the trained proficiency rank in Arcana or Occultism, and Stealth. If you would automatically become trained in one of those skills (from your background or class, for example), you instead become trained in a skill of your choice.

Supreme Sorcery Feat 1

Tiefling

Magic burns within you. Choose one magic school. Treat all spells from the arcane list wit that school as heightened (+1). For example, if you cast fireball as an arcane spell, and you’ve selected evocation as your school, it does an extra 2d6 points of fire damage.


5th Level

Dark Magic Feat 5

Tiefling

Prerequisites at least one arcane innate spell

Your connection to your ancestors and the wellspring of magic grows stronger, and you gain the ability to cast flaming sphere once per day.

Eyes of Evil Feat 5

Tiefling

You’ve learned to channel the dark energy of your fiendish ancestors into a useful tool.

Eyes of Evil [single action]

Once per day, by focusing your attention on a single target, you infuse them with intense paranoia causing them to second-guess their every move. The target must succeed on a DC 10 + ½ your level Will save or be frightened 2.

Halo of Fire Feat 5

Tiefling

Prerequisites Fiendish Resistance

You’ve become more in touch with your dark blood, and have learned to manifest a fiery halo.

Halo of Fire [reaction]

Trigger when you deal damage with a melee weapon

You cause your halo of fire to flare. This deals 1d6 fire damage to your target. This increases to 2d6 fire damage on a critical success.

Spiked Tail Feat 5

Tiefling

With time, you’ve grown a spiked tail, and it has become a formidable weapon in your arsenal. You gain a tail unarmed attack that deals 1d6 piercing damage. Your tails is in the brawling group and has the finesse and unarmed traits.

The Coming Darkness Feat 5

Tiefling

Prerequisites at least one arcane innate spell

Whenever you cast a spell with the darkness trait the spell is automatically heightened (+1). If it has a duration, it is doubled.


9th Level

Bask in My Glory Feat 9

Tiefling

One of your fiendish ancestors was one of the higher-ups from the Lower Planes, a minor lord in their own right. You’ve learned to project that authority.

Bask in My Glory [reaction]

Trigger whenever you have a critical success

You inspire all allies within 20 feet to greatness. They gain a +1 circumstance bonus to attack rolls, saving throws, and skill checks for the following round.

Oratory of Souls Feat 9

Tiefling

Prerequisites Intimidating Presence

You’ve learned to project the power of your convictions onto others. Whenever you make someone helpful by Making an Impression with the Diplomacy skill, you can automatically cast suggestion on them, as an innate arcane spell. If they fail the saving throw, the spell takes effect as normal, but a successful saving throw does not let the target know that they have been subjected to a spell.

The Dark Depths Feat 9

Tiefling

Prerequisites at least one innate arcane spell

Over time, your connection to the Lower Planes has grown, as has your magical power. You gain the ability to cast chilling darkness once per day as an innate arcane spell.


13th Level

Life Holder Feat 13

Tiefling

Your grasp on life means that you are very hard to kill, refusing to let your spirit pass into the Lower Planes.

Life Holder

Trigger whenever you fall to 0 hp

You will your body to start knitting itself together, as you take a deadly wound. Once per day, when reduced to 0 hp (ignoring any further damage), you immediately stabilize and you’re healed for 1d8 + your Constitution modifier Hit Points, as if you were the recipient of a heal spell.

River of Souls Feat 13

Tiefling

Your very presence weakens the borders between the planes, and makes it easier for souls to pass on to the afterlife. Any non-ally who receives the dying condition within 30 feet of you is automatically affected by doomed 1 and dies at dying 3 instead of dying 4. This counts as a death effect.

Random Tiefling Features

Presented below are random features a tiefling might possess. None of the following features grant characters any special power in excess of their usual abilities. Roll a d100 and consult the table to determine your fiendish features, or choose one or more features that interest you.

d100 Feature
01–02 Your feet are a couple of inches longer than a human’s and you have 6 toes.
03–04 You have 4 vestigial horns sprouting from your forehead.
05–06 Your eyeballs a black orbs, with a fluid, slick look to them.
07–08 You don’t have any external ears. Instead your have two small cones on the side of your head that serve the same function.
09–10 You have half again as many teeth as a normal human.
11–12 Your head has several pronounced bony ridges under the skin.
13–14 You have vestigial wings on your back, that resemble bat wings.
15–16 Your tongue is forked, causing you to hiss a lot.
17–18 You have no lips and spittle constantly dribbles down your face.
19–20 You have a third eye in the middle of your forehead. You can’t see through it, but it watches everyone.
21–22 Your have no nose, instead there’s a flat piece of skin.
23–24 Your nostrils are flared wide, like those of a bat.
25–26 Your tail isn’t scaly like most tieflings, instead it’s like that of a rat.
27–28 Your hair is long and dreadlocked. When you cut it, it’s back again the next morning.
29–30 You’ve only got 3 fingers and a thumb on each hand.
31–32 Your eyes are big, wide and can move independently like those of a chameleon.
33–34 Whenever you are angry, illusory flames seem to lick across your skull.
35–36 Your eyelids close vertically rather than horizontally.
37–38 Your canines are extremely pronounced and impossible to conceal, resulting in people sometimes mistaking you for a vampire.
39–40 Your skin subtly changes color to match your surroundings, though it is not camouflage.
41–42 Your skin color changes so that it clashes most violently with the colors around you, making finding clothes that match you a bit of a problem.
43–44 Your laughter is extremely deep and ominous.
45–46 When you talk, people can hear crackling fires in the background.
47–48 Your skin feels like sandpaper due to the tiny scales that cover your body.
49–50 Your tail is barbed.
51–52 Your tail ends in a vestigial stinger.
53–54 You smell of sulphur when you sweat.
55–56 When walking barefoot, part of your footprint always resembles a goat’s hoof.
57–58 Your knees bend backwards when you walk.
59–60 You have a magnificent set of antlers growing from your forehead.
61–62 You’re able to unhinge your jaw, and typically swallow your food without chewing first.
63–64 You feel an urge to avoid dogs and sense that they know something about you.
65–66 Dogs know something is wrong with you and always bark at you, even the ones that know you.
67–68 Your touch causes plants and flowers to die, though living creatures are unaffected.
69–70 Your heart beats at double the speed of a human’s.
71–72 You’re able to rotate your head around like an owl.
73–74 Your body is covered in runes and tattoos. You were born with them, and you don’t know their meaning.
75–76 Whenever you drink anything, it always tasted of blood.
77–78 You are completely bald. A mohawk of bone growths covers your head instead.
79–80 Your eyes are the color of embers, flaring into bright flames when you get emotional.
81–82 The back of your arms are covered in vulture feathers.
83–84 Two scaly protrusions rise up from your shoulders.
85–86 You have the legs of a goat.
87–88 Your fingertips are not covered in scales, unlike the rest of you.
89–90 Bone growths rise from your cheeks to your eyebrows, forming a visor of bone.
91–92 Shadows seem to follow you wherever you go, and you always find yourself standing in shadow.
93–94 You have a disconcerting habit of sticking your hands directly into fire, and they seldom get burnt.
95–96 Whenever you touch anything made of wood, you leave behind a burnt handprint, though your hand is not warm enough to set anything aflame.
97–98 You talk to yourself, but answer yourself in a much deeper voice.
99–00 You look completely like a normal human and nothing stands out as fiendish, apart from the two small horns on your forehead.

Equipment

Tieflings have access to the following equipment.

Fiendgore Unguent Item 1+

Consumable Divine Elixir Evil

Usage held in 1 hand; Bulk L
Activation [single-action] Interact

When this unguent—prepared with vile alchemical reagents and the gore of fiends—is applied to a wounded tiefling or evil fiend (not currently at maximum hit points), it momentarily transforms the essence of the target into something even more fearsome and demonic. While under the effects of a fiendgore unguent, a tiefling or an evil fiend gains an item item bonus on Intimidation checks to Demoralize and to the DC of all spells with the fear descriptor that they cast.

The unguent can only be properly applied to a willing or helpless creature. If applied to a creature other than a tiefling or an evil outsider, it the creature gains sickened 1 instead. The unguent’s effects (either beneficial or harmful) last for 1 minute.

Type lesser; Level 1; Price 3 gp: You gain a +1 item bonus.

Type moderate; Level 6; Price 35 gp: You gain a +2 item bonus.

Type greater; Level 10; Price 160 gp: You gain a +3 item bonus.

Type major; Level 14; Price 675 gp: You gain a +4 item bonus.

Section 15: Copyright Notice
Heaven & Hell: Aasimar & Tiefling Ancestries © 2019, Rising Phoenix Games; Author: Kim Frandsen.