Runequest Thursday #76 - Wizardry, Part Three, Greater Demons!

Clint Staples

In this series, we have been looking at the practice of WIzardry and the demons with which it is concerned. Today we will wrap it up with rules and examples for Greater Demons, the Nobility of the Far Realms.

Art is by the one and only - Frank Frazetta - I think!

Greater Demons:

Demons of Rank 4 or 5 are much more powerful, and more dangerous, than lesser demons. In fact, the attributes listed below do not represent the entirety of the demon in question, merely the portion of a Greater Demon’s essence that a wizard can summon, and hopefully, Bind. The complete Greater Demon is far beyond what is reflected here. There is some debate among wizards, that Greater Demons can never be compelled to a summons, and only ever appear if the demon wishes to do so. With luck, a wizard will never know the full extent of such a creature’s power. Obviously, before a wizard can hope to bind such monstrosities, she must have exceptional skill at her craft, and probably potent magical items to boost her POWer or offer additional protection.

It is recommended that the GM generate greater Demons for his campaign, using the rules provided, rather than allowing player wizards to design their own. This is primarily so that these powerful demons can exist before the wizard decides to summon them, as references in tomes, exerting influence on cultists, manipulating affairs behind the scenes or whatever other ways you care to include.


Below, you will find  examples of each fo the ranks of demons, including rolled stats like POWer and Demon Points.They were created entirely via the rules provided here and in the other two posts in the series. If you have not had a chance to look at those, or are wondering where the rest of the rules are, click on the Wizards and Demons tabs above. 

Rank 4 – Demon Lords

POWer: 4d8+24

Demon Points: 22d8+ Wizardry Skill

Summoning Resistance: -40%: Demon Lords have schemes and networks of agents such that they are generally unwilling, or unable, to travel to distant realms at the whim of another. Occasionally however, such a summons might meet with the plans of the demon lord, or a wizard might just be potent enough to call one forth.

Binding Resistance 2: A Demon Lord is powerful and well versed in the Binding of others to its will. The number of Strictures that a Wizard can impose upon a Demon Lord, which is normally equal to the Wizard’s Manipulation Limit, is reduced by 2. If this reduces the Manipulation Limit below 3, no binding is possible.

Base Damage 2d8

Demon Lords automatically have Dark Vision, Armor Points equal to STR / 4 and may have Disturbing Appearance, Extra Body Locations, Missing Body Locations and Swimming if appropriate, without spending Picks. They may spend Picks on the Rank 1 and 2 Tables, choosing what they want, instead of rolling randomly. Demon Lords gain an additional H it Point for every 2 POW they possess.


Rank 5 – Dukes of the Far Realms

POWer: 10d8+36

Demon Points: 30D8 +Wizardry Skill

Summoning Resistance -80%: Demonic Dukes are so powerful, and so enmeshed in the Far Realms, that they are incredibly difficult to draw away.

Binding Resistance: 4: A demonic Duke is the ultimate in demonic power. All but impossible to Bind, it is rarely safe even when successfully controlled. The number of Strictures that a Wizard can impose upon a Demonic Duke, which is normally equal to the Wizard’s Manipulation Limit, is reduced by 4. If this reduces the Manipulation Limit below 3, no binding is possible.

Base Damage 3d8

Demonic Dukes automatically have Dark Vision, Armor Points equal to STR / 4 and may have Disturbing Appearance, Extra Body Locations, Missing Body Locations and Swimming if appropriate, without spending Picks. They may spend Picks on the Rank 1, 2, and 3 Tables, choosing what they want, instead of rolling randomly.

Demonic Dukes gain an additional Hit point for every POW they possess.

Rank 5 Powers :Roll 1d8:

  1. Choice – The demon may reroll on the current Rank Table or choose a power at will from the Tables for lower Ranks.
  2. Dimensional Freedom (INT) – The demon is able to freely move between dimensions, unless it is barred by a binding sigil, wards or some other protection against such travel. If so, the demon can roll against its INT – Barrier’s level x5, to cross anyway. Demons with dimensional freedom are particularly dangerous to summon because they may well pass through the Binding Sigil that called them.
  3. Domain (POW) - The demon has mastery over a single theme. This can be an emotion (the Hate-Monger), an element (Mistress of the Outer Air), a trait (The Swift), or just about anything else. The demon embodies that trait, can influence it in and around others and its environment, and increase or reduce the amount of its domain. The demon is also completely immune to damage of the same sort as his domain. So a demon of Lightning would be immune to damage from electricity and lightning. This happens automatically if the domain is part of the environment. If it is embodied in something that resists interference, like a person, the demon must win a POWer contest.
  4. Fortune (POW) – The demon has an incredible degree of control over the vagaries of fortune. The demon may grant good or bad fortune to others, in the form of Infernal Intervention, otherwise known as a Wish. A wish can do many seemingly impossible things, but the demon’s power is restricted in the same way that the demon would be. It cannot see the future, nor transport anyone into the future. It can return a soul to life if the soul exists, but only within Rank Minutes before the Wish is invoked. It cannot be used to attack another, only to affect the invoker or a willing target. A wish cannot bring a thing into being, though it may appear to do so as the demon brings a thing from a distant dimension. A Demon of Fortune can ONLY be compelled to grant a wish if it is Bound to a single service – the granting of the Wish. If it is bound more permanently, it can never be compelled to grant a wish. Finally, the exact powers and limitations of a Wish are in the hands of the GM.
  5. Time Travel (INT) – The demon can travel backward in time to view, but not directly act upon, events or individuals. The demon can carry a single individual on this temporal trip, who is no more able to affect the past than the demon itself. The demon may make an INT check to determine where in time to find a particular “thing”. The demon may remain in the past for rank in minutes.
  6. Magic (INT) – The demon is a master of magicks that would shatter the minds of most mortals. It can replicate the effects of any sorcery spell with an INT check as its casting roll. It pays only the POWer cost, drawing the rest from stores of energy that it maintains in its home realm. It would accept the POW of sacrifices, or of the Binder, to allay the POW cost if the wizard wishes. This demon can cast a sorcery spell at the direction of its Binder, as if the binder had the spell, but using the demon’s INT and Manipulation Limit. If the spell is to affect a distant target, the range must be extended sufficiently for the task.
  7. Legion (CON) – The demon can summon lesser demons to its service. A CON x5 will summon 1d8 Ranks of demon, which will serve their master for a single task (restricted in much the same way as a Wizard’s Binding Strictures). CON x4, x3, x2, and x1, will add 1d8 Ranks for each, but no demon may be of more than Rank 3.
  8. Chaos (POW) – This demon is a creature of chaos. Roll immediately on this table for another Power possessed by this demon. It can taint others with chaos by touching them, or simply my exerting its influence through a POWer contest. Even commanding a demon of chaos risks taint. When contained within the Binding Sigil, a chaos demon is constrained as any other demon. But Binding a chaos demon is even more dangerous that biding a demon. Each time the wizard fails in the Binding attempt, the wizard must resists the demon’s POW or be tainted by chaos and immediately acquire a random chaotic feature. Each chaotic feature gained grants the demon an opportunity to Bind the Wizard in a POWer contest, thereby gaining a servant. If a wizard is bound to chaos, it becomes the toy of the demon, and is removed from play.


Note: GMs who want more Chaotic Demons to appear may add a Chaotic Power to lower Rank tables as well. Just pull out a single power from the Table in question and add the one below.

Chaotic (POW) – This demon is a creature of chaos. Roll immediately on this table for another power possessed by this demon. If the Wizard Attempts to Bind this demon, she risks chaos taint. Each time a wizard fails in a binding attempt he must immediately Roll POW x5 – the Demon’s Rank as a Percentage or immediately be wracked in agony as chaos feature manifests itself. Thereafter the wizard will detect as chaotic.

Demon Examples:

Name: Kyulat

Rank 1: Churl

POWer: 16

Demon Points: 85

STR 20

CON 12

SIZ 20

DEX 12

INT 15

Hit Points 19

Powers: 2

Magical Adept:

Extra Body Locations: abdomen (Add 1d4 SIZ)

Base Damage 1d4

Kyulat appears in the Binding Sigil as a rather malformed blue-skinned humanoid, impossibly long in the waist. His head is small and rather bovine, with small horns and a broad snout. His arms end in thicknailed hands with only limited dexterity. But the churl is relatively bright and has an innate understanding of magic that makes him a boon to any wizard.


Name: Argra

Ranks 2: Demonling

POWer: 20

Demon Points: 110

STR 20

CON 20

SIZ 12

DEX 20

INT 11

Hit Points 20

3 Powers:

Blind: No visual organs, perceive through heightened hearing. Immune to invisibility.

Chameleonic +40%  to Hide Checks.

Improved Damage 1d8

Rolled Blind Again, Chose Wings (Fly 20 Yards per Rounds)

Talon: 100%, 1d8 + damage bonus

Argra appears In the Binding Sigil with grey-feathered wings outspread, overshadowing an attractive female human body with skin of alabaster. Her feet are those of a deer and her arms end in talons reminiscent of those of a hawk. Long coppery hair conceal a lovely face that has no eyes, or even the orbits for them – only a smooth plane from cheeks to hairline. A pair of long ragged ears, protrude from her hair, constantly twitching at the slightest noise.


Name: ilarn

Rank 3: Tarkhan

POWer: 24

Demon Points: 140

STR 30

CON 24

SIZ 34

DEX 15


Hit Points 36

Powers: 5

Regenerate 3 per round

Improved Damage

Armor (3 Armor Points)

2 Picks to choose a power: Improved Movement: 30 Yards per round

Horns: 75%, 2d8+ damage bonus

Ilarn appears in the Binding Sigil as a war-horse, with stripes and tail not unlike those of a zebra. On its head, which is a cross of equine and something else, are a pair of forward curving horns and large ears. If he is successfully bound, Ilarn summons its own saddle and tack.


Ranks 4: Demon Lord - Ylissatra, Mistress of Nightwalker

POWer: 43

Demon Points: 199

STR 30

CON 30

SIZ 16

DEX 30

INT 16

CHA 30

Hit Points 47

Dark Vision, Armor Points 12 (STR/4 + 6 AP)

7 Picks: 35

1 Life Drain 4d3 Blood Drain.

Life Drain again – Double Blood Drain to 8d3 Blood Drain on touch, Heal damage to the same amount.

Command Own Kind – Yllissatra may command blood-drinking creatures of the Night. She has absolute control over tiny blood-drinking parasites like ticks, mosquitoes, and leeches nearby, and may command anything more potent, like vampires, with a successful POW contest.

Chosen Powers (from rank 1 and 2 Tables):

Appeal (+80% to CHA checks)

Armor (12 Demon Points spent, +6 AP)

Improved Damage (3d8 Base Damage)


Lifestealing Claw: 150%, 3d8+ damage Bonus+ 8d3 Blood Drain

Ylissatra, the Nightwalker Mistress is a hedonistic seductress, a ruthless killer ever hungry for blood, especially that of innocents. She appears in the Binding Sigil as a woman of unearthly beauty, nude and blood-drenched, accompanied by a cloud of buzzing mosquitoes. All blood-drinking creatures, living or dead, are hers to command. Wizard Lore suggests that Ylissatra may be swayed to her own Binding with gifts of sweet blood, and offers of tasks involved seduction and assassination. If this is true, her Power would be at -5 when being Bound to a single service, because of her eagerness for such tasks.


Rank 5: Thrakae – The Juggernaut, Duke of Lightning

POWer: 81

Demon Points: 243

STR 48

CON 30

SIZ 32

DEX 20

INT 30

CHA 20

Hit Points 112

Dark Vision, Armor Points 27 (STR/4 + 15 AP)

Picks: 7

Chosen (Rank 3 or lower): Armor (30 Points spent for 15 Armor Points),

Special Attack: 6d8 Lightning Damage, 15 yard Cone, 15 times per day


Domain: Lightning and Electricity

(Rolled Domain again, chose Teleportation instead) Teleport 180 Miles.

Elemental Radiation 3d8 Lightning damage for five yards around Thrakae

Paralyzing Gaze: up to five targets, POW vs. POW; 5 times per day.

Juggernaut Smash: 100%, 3d8+damage bonus

Duke Thrakae is as violent and unpredictable as the lightning with which he is forever wreathed. He appears in the Binding Sigil as a monstrous behemoth of scales and muscle, seemingly sculpted from stone, the joints of his body glowing a vitriolic blue. Lightning sparks and shivers from his every part, but especially surrounds the twisting jagged horn on his bestial forehead. When lightning flashes from his cobalt eyes, those he gazes upon are frozen in terror and agony. When the horn flares, jagged bolts of white hot electricity pour forth. For all his bestial appearance, Thrakae is cunning and inhumanly intelligent. Few wizards survive attempts to bind the Juggernaut.


That is it for Demons and Wizards. Go and check out Demon Weapons and Armor for more fun!