Yama (5e Race)

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This content deviates from 5e standards. Its use could dramatically alter campaigns, take extreme care. DesignDisclaimer.png
Caution - Here there be monsters!
This content intends to provide a different experience, or goes beyond the scope of the anticipated subjects and situations, than the 5e rules were intended to handle. Some portions of the content below may not be what you expect from traditional game content. When implementing this content, DMs and Players should read over all the information carefully, and consider the following specific notes of interest:
This material presents a character to be a higher being, so DMs should take note of that fact. Such a character is presented as immortal, but not completely above mortality in that they can still be manually killed, but will not age. Furthermore, they are granted other non-mortal perks such as not requiring food, drink, or sleep, and being non-susceptible to disease. A DM should consider how these perks may impact the character relative to the party and the campaign before allowing use of this material.

Design Note: Because of unique circumstances surrounding this race, the society section has been replaced with a "descent" section, prompting players to think about why their character has descended to the Material Plane and joined up with the party.

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A large group of orc bandits are crowded around a battered and skewed carriage, talking loudly and emphatically to each other about how they'll split the loot, a few corpses of elves littering the ground nearby. The barbarous thieves had just slaughtered a lesser elvish noble and their retainers and envoy, blinded by their greed and desire for the valuables that would undoubtedly be found. Then, amidst the arguing of the criminals, their leader called for attention in a booming voice, silencing his lackeys as all eyes went on him. The leader was easily a full six inches taller than any of his companions, and was the strongest of the bunch, and his naturally fierce disposition commanded the respect of the other bandits. However, as the large orc opened his mouth to speak, he noticed his eighteen subordinates blanch as their gazes went past him. Not stupid, the leader began to turn around, though he was infuriated by their lack of respect. However, just as he finished turning and opened his mouth to spit insults at whoever had dared to interrupt him, he was sent flying a full 15 feet away, flung like a ragdoll, by an impact to the side of his head that felt ten times as forceful as a giant's fist. However, the other bandits saw what had really happened: a towering, imposing figure in ornamental uniform, clearly standing several inches taller than even the tall orc it had just struck, had just swung a strange, flat rod or baton of sorts into the bandit captain. The authoritative being then straightened out and raised the weapon to level it at the eighteen bandits, and spoke. "Your time for judgement has come; I will now dictate whether you shall be sent to paradise... Or to the depths of Hell. However, if you even possess a mote of a brain within your skull, it should not be hard to determine for yourselves which you will find yourselves in." The bandits, struggle as they might, couldn't resist their damnation; the supreme judge of the afterlife had come for them.

(one vote)

Physical Description

A yama, also known as an enma, is an imposing being whose countenance silently demands the respect of all those around them, regardless of what stature they may possess.

A yama looks much like a human does, though their height can surprisingly vary much more wildly than other races. Their hair and eyes are also completely unrestricted in color; some can have brown hair and eyes, others will have bright magenta eyes and cyan hair. Despite their relatively human appearance, yama will inherently cause others who look at them to unavoidably experience a feeling of respect for them; they give off an aura of authority to them that every race can understand at the instinctual level.


The yama have always been the beings who preside over paradise and Hell, and judge the deceased based on the sins they have accumulated in their life, deciding whether a soul shall be blessed to an endless peace in paradise, or damned to an existence of eternal suffering in Hell. Some religions have writings on such judges, often referring to them as "Supreme Judges of the Afterlife" or simply "Supreme Judges". Though there are no documentation of cases where one such judge has descended to the mortal realm to preemptively pass judgement upon a mortal prior to their death, this is not to say such documents do not exist or that such an occurrence has never happened.


When making a yama, a player must ask themselves: What is your character attempting to accomplish? Why have they descended to the Material Plane? Have they been sent by a higher deity for some special task? Have they descended of their own accord for more personal reasons? Talk to your DM about potential reasons why your character is in the mortal realm, and why they would be traveling with the rest of the party.

Yama Names

Yama usually use celestial names, though they can also use the names of any race or language.

Yama Traits

You are one of the supreme judges of the afterlife; your very presence demands respect, as you have come to lay judgement.
Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom and Charisma scores each increase by 1.
Age. Yama are near immortal; they do not age, though they can still die in combat.
Alignment. Yama are always either lawful neutral or true neutral; they are almost never good, evil, or chaotic alignments. Lawful alignments are much more common among them.
Size. Yama vary drastically in stature, with the shortest standing only just over 5 feet tall and the tallest brushing just short of 8 feet in height. Regardless of where you stand in this range, your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Superior Darkvision. You can see in dim light within 120 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Divine Being. Your creature type is both humanoid and celestial. Additionally, you do not require food, drink, or sleep, you do not incur exhaustion if you do not rest, you are immune to diseases, have resistance to poison damage and have advantage on saving throws against being poisoned, though you must still rest for 8 hours to receive the benefits of a long rest, and you may still receive levels of exhaustion from effects that directly inflict it. You may also still ingest food or drink if you wish.
Supreme Judge. You are proficient in the Insight and Intimidation skills.
Completely Level-Headed. You have advantage on saving throws against being charmed or frightened, and magic can't put you to sleep.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Celestial.

Random Height and Weight

5′ 0'' +2d12+1d10 68 lb. × (2d4) lb.

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

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