Imp (5e Race)

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Scales.png This page is of questionable balance. Reason: Stronger than any first party race. Comparing this to first parties only shapshifter race this race get a plethora of additional benefits, the comments on the talk page about there being "too many traits" is correct in that regard. While this race has definitely been taken in the right direction it still requires work. Namely a nerfing back a number of the traits to be more comparable to the first party. Detriments(negative ASI's, vulnerabilities) should be flavourful, interesting and avoid pidgeon-holing the race into one class. A vulnerability is very crippling so instead, taking an additional die of damage from silvered weapons should be flavourful but not overly punishing. The shapechanging needs limits, see the changling race as well as the variants on the wiki. The flight should be given a height limit as pre 5th level flight breaks games, plain and simple. Magical resistance is one of the most sought-after benefits in the game, having it as an innate benefit is too much on top of the shapeshifting and innate flight so this should be removed as well as the negative ASI's. Finally, instead of giving them Tiny, give them Small and the opposite of the Goliath's Powerful Build trait. Besides the suggestions given, consult the 5e Race Design Guide for help and see the Featured Articles pages for some exemplary content.

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An imp loves three things: summons, corruption, and itself. An imp on the shoulder is a thorn to the side, but it will shield its master with all its power. An imp doesn't have to be attached to a summoner to be in the mortal plane, but it's rare to see one that's not.

That said, imps are lazy and unreliable and will often shirk duties whenever possible, especially ones that sound boring or dangerous. It brings them glee to see their master frustrated and stressed.

Physical Description[edit]

With the ability to shapeshift into tiny beasts, one can only be sure they've seen an imp if it was in its true form. Outside of your beast forms, you are a diminutive humanoid with leathery, bat-like wings. Your skin ranges from fiery red to sulfur yellow. Most imps have small, pointy horns the color of their skin, but you may have longer horns or no horns at all. You also have a mouth full of sharp teeth which jut out over your lips.


A petty lesser devil of mischief, you were at one point a mortal soul that sunk into the Nine Hells. You were first transformed into a lemure, and then into an imp as you were found to be useful.


Originally promoted as battle fodder, imps who live beyond their use are often bullied by higher-level devils. Because of their ease to deal with compared to more powerful fiends, they are often summoned to the world of mortals to act as familiars for spellcasters. If the imp's summoner dies without dismissing the imp, or the summoner breaks any of the contract's rules, an imp will break the contract and psychic bond. In those cases, an imp may stay in the mortal world indefinitely and unchained. However, an imp's primary goal in contracts is to obtain the soul of a mortal, as the captured soul displays merit among other lesser devils.

Imp Names[edit]

The true names of imps are kept as less of a secret than those of other devils, as they tend to welcome any summons to the mortal plane. Their names are often derived from Infernal and are not divided by gender. Invidoo, Druzil, and Cespenar are examples of existing imp names.

Imp Traits[edit]

A tiny shapechanging fiend with a barbed, stinging tail.
Ability Score Increase. Your Dexterity score increases by 2, your Strength decreases by 2, and your Intelligence decreases by 1.
Age. Imps reach maturity at around 5, and live until they are killed in their home plane.
Alignment. Imps are strongly predisposed towards selfishness and are loyal to the hierarchy of the Nine Hells. Thus, they are almost always lawful evil, but a true neutral imp is not unheard of.
Size. Imps stand about 2 feet tall and average 8 pounds in weight. Your size is tiny.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 20 feet, but you have a flying speed of 40 feet.
Devil's Sight. Accustomed to the darkness of the lower planes, you have no problem seeing in darkness. You can see in dim light within 120 feet as if it were bright light and darkness as though it were dim light, even magical darkness. You can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray. In addition, Magical Darkness doesn't effect your Darkvision.
Hellborn Skills. A natural master of lying, you have proficiency in the Deception skill. Aiding this, you can use an action to turn invisible or to polymorph into a rat (speed 20ft.), a raven (20ft., fly 60ft.), or a spider (20ft., climb 20ft), or back into your true form. In your polymorphed forms, your stats are congruent with those of the beasts you become. You remain invisible until you lose concentration, and you remain polymorphed until you switch back or die.
Stinger. You have a barbed stinger on the end of your tail, which can do 1d4+3 piercing damage and 3d6 poison damage unless the target makes a DC 11 Constitution saving throw. It has a reach of 5 feet and +5 to hit. In your beast forms, this attack becomes a bite with the stinger's effects halved.
Tiny. As a tiny creature, you need less food and water than larger creatures, and you have advantage on Stealth. However, you are restricted in that the heaviest armor you can wear is light armor, light weapons are treated as heavy weapons, your carrying and lift capacity is reduced by half, and you cannot benefit from the finesse property unless the weapon is also light.
Magic Resistance. You have advantage on Saving Throws against Spells and other magical Effects.
Fury of the Small. When you damage a creature with an attack or a spell and the creature's size is larger than yours, you can cause the attack or spell to deal extra damage to the creature. The extra damage equals your level.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Infernal.

Random Height and Weight[edit]

1′ 10″ +1d4 5 lb. × (1d3) lb.

*Height = base height + height modifier
**Weight = base weight + (height modifier × weight modifier)

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