Fiends' magical nature allows them to crossbreed with virtually any creature. Spawned deep in the dark, nether planes, these fiendish offspring are abominations that plague mortal creatures.

Demons and devils bring their progeny along to the Material Plane and loose them upon the world. Sometimes, however, fiends force themselves on mortal creatures to create evil half-breeds. The more depraved creatures are sometimes even willing to participate. Although half-fiend offspring are usually destroyed at birth, some survive to become grotesque mockeries of their mortal parents. All too rarely, though, one learns from and takes on the characteristics of its non-fiendish parent, turning from its evil heritage.

No matter the form, half-fiends are always hideous to behold, having dark scales, horns, glowing red eyes, batwings, a fetid odor, or some other obvious sign that they are tainted with evil.

Never truly fitting into any mortal society, half-fiends are usually loners. In the infernal planes, they are mistreated and derided for their impure nature. Among non-fiends, they are outcasts, hated corruptions of the natural order. Humanoid half-fiends are sometimes called "cambions." They often serve more powerful fiends or lead evil creatures on the Material Plane.

Creating A Half-Fiend

"Half-fiend" is a template that can be added to any corporeal creature (referred to hereafter as the "base creature"). The creature's type changes to "outsider." It uses all the base creature's statistics and special abilities except as noted here.

Speed: There is a 50% chance that a half-fiend has bat wings. The creature can fly at the base creature's normal speed (average maneuverability).

AC: Natural armor improves by +1.

Attacks: A half-fiend gains bite and claw attacks in addition to the base creature's attacks, if it did not have them already.

Damage: If the base creature does not have bite and claw attacks, use the damage values in the table below. Otherwise, use the values below or the base creature's damage, whichever is greater.

SizeBite DamageClaw Damage
Fine 1 -

Special Attacks: A half-fiend retains all the special attacks of the base creature. Half-fiends with an Intelligence or Wisdom score of 8 or higher possess the following spell-like abilities, using their level as the caster level, as specified in the table below. Unless otherwise indicated, the ability is usable once per day.

1-2Darkness 3/day
5-6Unholy blight
7-8Poison 3/day
13-14Unholy aura 3/day, unhallow
15-16Horrid wilting
17-18Summon monster IX (fiends only)

Special Qualities: A half-fiend has all the special qualities of the base creature, plus darkvision with a range of 60 feet. Half-fiends are immune to poison, and have acid, cold, electricity and fire resistance 20.

Saves: Same as the base creature

Abilities: Increase from the base creature as follows: Str +4, Dex +4, Con +2, Int +4, Wis +0, Cha +2.

Skills: A half-fiend has 8 skill points, plus its Intelligence modifier, per Hit Die. Treat skills from the base creature's list as class skills and other skills as cross-class. If the creature has a class, it gains skills for class levels normally.

Feats: Half-fiends have one feat for every four levels or the base creature's total of feats, whichever is greater.

Climate/Terrain: Same as either the base creature or the fiend.

Organization: Same as the base creature

Challenge Rating: Same as the base creature +2

Alignment: Always evil (any)

Treasure: Same as the base creature

Advancement: Same as the base creature

Half-Fiend Characters

Half-fiend humanoids often have a character class, favoring clerics, fighters, rogues, and sorcerers. Rogues and fighters frequently take the prestige classes assassin or blackguard, respectively. Nonhumanoids are also sometimes clerics or sorcerers. Half-fiend clerics serve evil deities such as Erythnul, Gruumsh, Hextor, Nerull, or Vecna.

Half-Fiend Template Class

By Sean K Reynolds

In last month's installment, we converted the half-dragon and the wererat templates to 3-level template classes. This month, we tackle the half-fiend and the wereboar -- a 4-level and a 3-level template class, respectively.

Half-fiends are the spawn of mortals and fiends -- powerful demons, devils, or other evil outsiders. Tainted from conception with evil, half-fiends are mistreated by true fiends and feared by mortals. "Half-fiend" is usually an inherited template, but it could be acquired through special magical rituals as well.

Some depraved mortals voluntarily subject themselves to evil power in hopes of becoming more like fiends, and occasionally such tampering results in a half-fiend. Such beings can advance in the half-fiend template class, just as natural-born half-fiends can if they wish to develop their powers more slowly. Because almost all half-fiends are evil, the DM is free to require that a good or neutral character who advances as a half-fiend become fully evil by the time she has completed the class progression.

Because the half-fiend template and half-celestial template differ only in alignment focus, the half-fiend template class can easily be used as a model to create a half-celestial template class. (See the "About the Author" section at the end of this article for more information on another half-celestial class option.)

The Half-Fiend Template Class
1st *Dex +2, natural armor +1, 2 claws, darkvision 60 ft., outsider type, spell-like abilities
2nd **Str +2, Con +2, bite, poison immunity, resistances (acid 5, cold 5, electricity 5, fire 5), spell resistance (lesser), spell-like abilities
3rd ***Str +2, Int +2, damage reduction, smite good, spell-like abilities
4th ***Dex +2, Int +2, Cha +2, (acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, fire 10), spell resistance (greater), spell-like abilities, wings
* A 1st-level half-fiend with fewer than 11 HD has a CR adjustment of +0. One with 11 or more HD has a CR adjustment of +1.
** A 1st-level half-fiend with fewer than 11 HD has a CR adjustment of +1. One with 11 or more HD has a CR adjustment of +2.
*** A 1st-level half-fiend with fewer than 5 HD has a CR adjustment of +1. One with 5-10 HD has a CR adjustment of +2. One with 11 or more HD has a CR adjustment of +3.

Half-Fiend Template Class Features

All of the following are class features of the half-fiend template class.

Ability Score Changes: The indicated ability score increases or decreases by the amount noted.

Natural Armor Improvements: At 1st level, the half-fiend's natural armor bonus increases by +1. A character that does not normally have a natural armor bonus (such as a human) is considered to have an initial natural armor bonus of +0 for the purpose of this ability. Thus, a human's natural armor bonus would increase to +1 at 1st level.

Claws: At 1st level, the half-fiend gains two claw attacks if she didn't already have them. For the base damage of her claw attacks, use the appropriate value from the table below if the base creature did not previously have claw attacks. If she did, use either the value from the table or the base creature's claw damage, whichever is better. The half-fiend's claws are natural attacks.

Small 1d3
Gargantuan 2d6

Darkvision (Ex): At 1st level, the half-fiend gains darkvision to a 60-foot range.

Spell-Like Abilities: Starting at 1st level, a half-fiend with an Intelligence or Wisdom score of 8 or better gains spell-like abilities. The exact abilities gained depend on the half-fiend's character level and level in the template class, according to the following table. In each case, the caster level equals the half-fiend's character level. Save DCs, where applicable, are Charisma-based (10 + spell level + half-fiend's Charisma modifier).

Half-Fiend Level
Character Level
Spell-Like Abilities Gained
1st 1stDarkness 3/day
7thPoison 3/day
13thUnhallow 1/day
2nd3rdDesecrate 1/day
6thUnholy blight 1/day
13thUnholy aura 3/day
3rd9thContagion 1/day
15thHorrid wilting 1/day
17thSummon monster IX (fiends only) 1/day
4th11thBlasphemy 1/day
19thDestruction 1/day

The character gains each spell-like ability as soon as she meets both qualifications for it. Spell-like abilities are cumulative, so a 2nd-level half-fiend whose character level is 6th has darkness (1st-level half-fiend) plus desecrate and unholy blight (2nd-level half-fiend).

Outsider Type: At 1st level, the half-fiend completes her metamorphosis. Her type changes to outsider (native). She becomes vulnerable to spells and effects that work on creatures of the outsider type but is immune to effects that target her original type. For example, an evil half-human/half-fiend would be subject to the extra damage from an evil outsider bane sword, but she is immune to hold person because that spell affects only humanoids.

Bite: At 2nd level, the half-fiend gains a bite attack if she didn't already have one. For the base damage of the half-fiend's bite attack, use the appropriate value from the table below if the base creature did not previously have a bite attack. If she did, use either the value from the table or the base creature's bite damage, whichever is better. The half-fiend's bite is a natural attack.

Fine 1
Diminutive 1d2
Small 1d4
Large 1d8
Huge 2d6
Gargantuan 3d6

Poison Immunity (Ex): At 2nd level, a half-fiend becomes immune to all poisons.

Resistances (Ex): At 2nd level, a half-fiend gains resistance 5 to acid, cold, electricity, and fire. At 4th level, each of these resistances increases to 10.

Spell Resistance (Su): At 2nd level, a half-fiend gains spell resistance equal to her character level (maximum 25). At 4th level, her spell resistance increases by +10 (maximum 35).

Damage Reduction (Su): A 3rd-level or higher half-fiend has damage reduction 5/magic if her character level is 11th or lower, or damage reduction 10/magic if her character level is 12th or higher. A half-fiend treats her natural weapons as magic weapons for the purpose of bypassing the damage reduction of other creatures.

Smite Good (Su): Once per day, a half-fiend of at least 3rd level may attempt to smite a good creature with one normal melee attack. This attack deals extra damage equal to her character level (maximum +20) against a good foe. If she accidentally smites a creature that is not evil, the smite has no effect but is still used up for the day.

Wings (Ex): At 4th level, a half-fiend grows bat-like wings, which she may use to fly at up to her base land speed with average maneuverability.

Sample Half-Fiend: Half-Fiend/Half-Medusa.

Template Index