Demons – General

A Note about Demons in Fantasy Role-Playing Games:

Demons are a necessary and important part of full fantasy gaming, as they occupy a special place in literature and tradition as the Ultimate Enemies of Mankind. Nevertheless, they are all powerful beings – indeed, they will entirely overmatch average PC. This means that one must treat Demons with an eye toward the long-range perspective of the campaign – a campaign in which the PCs have a continuing part to play. In short, Demons are more than monstrous killing mechanisms but rather as great forces that have an effect on the lives and goals of the Player Characters.The Great Demons, the full subjects of Hell, are immortal and not subject to death, they can only suffer banishment from this Plane of Existence for a time until they recover their powers and can reopen the Gate between Worlds. This gives them a peculiar attitude toward mortals and events in the world of men. First, they have an immensely inflated opinion of their own powers, believing themselves to be well nigh invincible. Indeed, this very hubris makes them demons in the first place! This, combined with a great contempt for the ability of mortals to oppose them seriously, believing as they do that men are morally weak and thus, they underestimate their Player Character adversaries and often do not follow through to be certain of an enemy’s permanent elimination.

The Great Demons are immensely powerful in gaming terms. They have to be if Players are to lake them seriously. At the same time, while the Great Demons can easily wipe out most PC adversaries there is a balance in the Cosmic Game; something is there which acts to protect men of good heart so that they do not quite perish. They may seem to be defeated utterly and yet they rise up and confront the Evil repeatedly. This is the True Heroic Tradition. Thus all PC Heroes, subject to a successful resurrection check, survive a slaying at the hands of a Great Demon. No form of Clerical miracle takes place; it is a matter for a Higher Power to decide. All the hero knows is that the Demon seemed to be tearing him apart when the ‘lights went out’. He then awakes a few minutes or hours later to find he is battered but alive!

In addition, the Great Demons have a view that spans thousands of years and do not see the events of an infinitesimal moment in their long lives to be of particular importance. Thus, they do not take the time to make sure of their mortal opponents. The fact is that the Great Demons make mistakes. They may, for example, incapacitate their opponents and place them in difficult circumstances as their form of sadistic joke. Thus a player hero defeated by a Great Demon might find he is banished to a copper mine in the desert somewhere, chained and naked except for a loin cloth, or he might awake to find himself chained to an oar in a galley. The Demon might allow him to remain in his present situation, the Demon being so self-assured that he feels he can permit the foolish mortal to live and suffer in the knowledge that he is utterly helpless against the Power of Hell. The Demon is playing with his toys, and a hero worth his salt will demonstrate that one cannot toy with the Heroes of Men. From a long-term point of view, this form of adventure gaming is filled with opportunities.

The Lesser Demons are mortal. Demonic Beasts, Infernal Warriors, Tempters, Destroyers, and Furies have a slightly more cautious view of men. Put bluntly, the Lower Demons know that sufficiently powerful heroes can kill them, and thus they may tend to play for keeps on principle. In their case, a slaying of a PC Hero is subject to Intelligence Check on their part. If they fail the save, the Hero has same the chance for Divine Intervention in the form of a CON Check as with a greater demon. In addition, the Lesser Demon might choose to ‘play with his toys’ because of an over-inflated sense of his power- -showing much the same contempt as his more powerful superiors. Thus, they may spare to have a return bout with his Demonic adversary.

NPCs are not subject to the above considerations. In the game, they are the victims of Evil that the Heroes are attempting to defeat and act as a spur to tile courage of PCs to find a solution to the problem. Some Game Masters might object to this seeming intervention in the natural course of events. However, D&D is a game, and it attempts to simulate the events that occur in a fantasy adventure fully in the tradition. In the literature, Heroes survive certain death repeatedly, where lesser men perish. There is no way to simulate this fate factor in a combat or magic system without distorting the system. Nevertheless, we can alter the outcome. This is our solution to the problem of confronting the PCs with almost impossible odds against them, yet permitting survival of a Character Hero if he is defeated.

A Note on Nomenclature

Demons and devils are the evil spirit beings that inhabit the lower planes. A Devil is a named spirit while a demon is the rank and file of the Hellish Host.

General Characteristics:

Unless otherwise noted, non-magical weapons can harm demons. All devils and demons have or are able to perform the following:

  • Charm Person
  • Suggestion
  • Illusion
  • Infravision 60’
  • Teleport Without Error
  • Know Alignment
  • Cause Fear (effect varies)
  • Animate Dead

Devils are able to summon their fellows, summoning being similar to a monster summoning spell. Because they have a special form of telepathy, devils are able to understand and converse with any intelligent creature.

The listed attack forms, as noted below, affect devils:

Attack Maximum Damage Will be:
acid full
cold half
electricity (lightning) full
fire (dragon, magical) none
gas (poisonous, etc.) half
iron weapon none*
magic missile full
poison full
silver weapon full

*unless affected by normal weapons, in which case damage will be according to the weapon type

Organization of the Hellish Host

There are 10 circles of hell, only nine of which are accessible by mortal souls – there are some depths of depravity to which even the worst of men cannot descend. These correspond to the Tree of Impure Emanations, and they are as follows:

Name Plane Ruler
Avernus 1st Zariel
Dis 2nd Dispater
Minauros 3rd Mammon
Phlegethos 4th Belial
Stygia 5th Geryon
Malbolge 6th Moloch
Maldomini 7th Beelzebub
Caina 8th Mephistophiles
Nessus 9th Asmodeus
Infernus 10th Lucifer

The orders of demons in order of ascending power are:

  1. Lost Souls – the Lost and the Damned
  2. Petty Demons – the lesser beasts of Hell
  3. Infernal Warriors – Foot soldiers of the Hellish Host
  4. Tempters – Demons of Carnality & Demons of Wealth and Power
  5. Furies – Avengers of Sin
  6. Destroyers – Demons of Fire & Darkness
  7. Chevalier L’Enfer – The Chivalry of Hell
  8. Fallen Angels – Nobles of Hell
  9. Powers – Great Lords of the Hellish Host
  10. Principalities – Princes of the Hellish Host
  11. His Satanic Majesty

All devils are able to move about the planes of Hell (although they dare not do so without authorization, save for the Fallen Angels, Powers or Principalities). Devils can also move through the astral plane, although they seldom do so. No devil is able to enter the other planes unless someone performs the proper ritual to open a gate, or one speaks the proper name of a devil (and the devil hears).

It is possible to destroy the material form of a greater devil or a fallen angel, power or principality, but such creatures are immortal and they always return to life. Devils can never be subdued.

All devils can direct their attacks against two or more opponents if the means are at hand. If a greater devil has its material form destroyed, it returns to lemure status for nine decades of torment before it resumes its former station. If the material form of a fallen angel, power or principality is destroyed, that arch-devil is bound to its own particular plane of Hell for a decade (unless again properly called forth prior to the end of the 10 years) and a great loss of face is suffered (and fury in Hell is unmatched then).

The Lesser Lords in the Hierarchy of Hell

The following is a list of the dukes of Hell as well as some of their foremost henchmen. There are no individual statistics and descriptions for many of these devils. Indeed, some are but little stronger than a pit fiend, or are, in fact, actual pit fiends.

Name In the Service Of Command or Position
Abigor Beelzebub 60 companies of malebranche
Adonides Mephistopheles Steward
Adramelec h Asmodeus Chancellor
Agares Geryon 31 companies of bone devils
Alastor* Asmodeus Executioner
Alocer Dispater 36 companies of erinyes
Amduscias Zariel 29 companies of abishai
Amon Geryon 40 companies of bone devils
Aradia Zariel Consort
Arioch Dispater Avenger
Baalberith* Asmodeus Majordomo
Baalphegor (F) Mephistopheles Consort
Baalzephon* Dispater Prime minister
Bael Mammon 66 companies of barbed devils
Baftis (F) Beelzebub Consort
Balan Belial 40 companies of bearded devils
Barbas Mephistopheles Chamberlain
Barbatos Beelzebub Marshal
Bathym Belial 30 companies of barbed devils
Bel* Dispater 3 companies of malebranche
Bele Mephistopheles Justiciar
Benzonia (F) Asmodeus Consort
Bethage* Moloch 9 companies of malebranche
Biffant Dispater Provost
Bifrons Mephistopheles 26 companies of ice devils
Bileth Moloch Tribune
Bitru Dispater 70 companies of erinyes
Buer Asmodeus 15 companies of pit fiends
Bune Asmodeus 30 companies of malebranche
Caarcrinolaas Mammon 36 companies of barbed devils
Chamo Belial Legate
Cozbi (F) Geryon Consort
Fecor* Geryon 8 companies of malebranche
Focalor Mammon Seneschal
Furcas* Dispater 12 companies of bearded devils
Gaziel Belial 11 companies of bone devils
Glasya (F) Mammon Consort; daughter of Asmodeus
Goap* Zariel 3 companies of erinyes
Gorson Geryon Bailiff
Herobaal* Moloch 16 companies of bone devils
Herodias Geryon Magi st ra te
Hutijin Mephistopheles 2 companies of pit fiends
Labascia (F) Moloch Consort
Lilis (F) Dispater Consort
Machalas Geryon 11 companies of barbed devils
Malphas Zariel 40 companies of abishai
Martinet Asmodeus Constable
Melchon Mammon 18 companies of erinyes
Merodach Dispater 21 companies of barbed devils
Morax Asmodeus 9 companies of pit fiends
Naome (F) Belial Consort
Neabaz Baalzebul Herald
Nexroth* Mephistopheles 16 companies of malebranche
Phongor Asmodeus Inquisitor
Rimmon Asmodeus 5 companies of ice devils
Tartach Moloch Legate
Titivilus Dispater Nuncio
Zaebos * Belial Lieutenant
Zagum Asmodeus 30 companies of barbed devils
Zapan* Belial 4 companies of malebranche
Zepar Baalzebul 28 companies of malebranche
Zimimar* Mammon 6 companies of bone devils

Those demons whose names are marked with an asterix (*) are pit fiends.


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