Yuan-Ti Information

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Yuan-Ti Information

Post  Fox on Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:52 am

As per Races of Faerun. Debatable as the proper source to use, but good for background information.


The Yuan-Ti are a race of snake people that are descended from an unholy crossbreeding between Humans and an ancient reptilian race. They come in three distinctly different forms (Purebloods, half-bloods & abominations), and they have created two subraces of servitor as well (tainted ones & broodguards). Together, they form a horrific threat to the rest of Faerun. This profile is going to cover the Purebloods & Tainted ones, as they're the most acceptable ones, and most common. (Abominations are obscene in terms of power).

Purebloods have some serpentine characteristics, but can generally pass for human. They are the weakest of the true Yuan-Ti, serving as overseers and taskmasters over the Yuan-Ti servitors and slaves, as well as spies & assassins. Purebloods have subtle reptilian features, such as snake eyes, forked tongues, pointed teeth, patches of scaly skin & the like. They are human-sized. Purebloods answer to the halfbloods and the abominations, even more powerful creatures whose serpentine features are too pronounced to allow them to infiltrate humanoid society without powerful magic.

Tainted ones are humanoids who have been corrupted by drinking a special Yuan-Ti elixir. The result is a person who looks almost exactly like his normal self, but whose mind has been twisted to the Yuan-Ti way. They serve as Yuan-Ti agents & spies in humanoid lands. Tainted ones sometimes develop distinctive mannerisms such as licking their lips constantly, drawing out their sibilants while speaking, or keeping large serpents as pets.

All of the True Yuan-Ti subraces can interbreed, although most stick to their own kind. Yuan-Ti lay eggs, like reptiles. The hatchlings form these eggs reach adulthood at about 12 years of age. On average, Yuan-Ti live to be about 80 years old, although some have been known to live over 120 years.

Yuan-Ti have the same life expectancy and age categories as Humans.


The true Yuan-Ti are the proud descendants of interbreeding between humans and the long-lost Saurian creator race. They can be found all across Faerun, although they mostly prefer to keep their existence secret, and the locations of their lairs even more so. They have a long, mostly frustrated history of trying to take over various kingdoms in Faerun, but they have firmly established themselves in several places - the city of Hlondeth in the Vilhon Reach, the land of Tashalar on the Shining Sea, and in the depths of the Black Jungles (of Chult), & Mhair Jungles.

These days, the Yuan-Ti have decided that if the direct approach does not work, there are still other ways to bring a country to it's knees. To that end,they are infiltrating hundereds of agents - mostly tainted ones - into important posts throughout the various nations of Faerun. These spies are to gather information about potential targets & look for opportunities for the Yuan-Ti to strike.


All Yuan-Ti - even the servitors - are arrogant, convinced that their race is superior to all others. They believe it is only a matter of time before their machinations allow them to take over the nations of Faerun from within. While they are not averse to open battle & actually excel at it, they realise that they are greatly outnumbered by their chosen foes, & prefer to use more subtle means to weaken their enmies from within.

From the moment they are hatched, young Yuan-Ti are led to believe that the world once belonged to their ancestors, the Saurians. As such, it rightly belongs to them & it is only a matter of time before they recover it. This justifies any kind of evil they may do to the peoples of Faerun. After all, they are not proposing to take over someone else's country. They simply want back what is rightfully theirs & they are prepared to go to any lengths to get it.

The Yuan-Ti spend a great deal of time hiding in the wild, hunting for their food while they wait for the tainted ones to bring them the information they need to be able to plan an attack. For this reason, they often end up as rangers. However, they are devout worshipers of Sseth, the Yuan-Ti god, so there are a number of clerics within their ranks too.

Most Yuan-Ti Become adventurers because they want to increase their own standing within their communities. Tainted ones, in particular, are often found far from any Yuan-Ti home, since it is their task to infiltrate humanoid society in preparation for the next attack.

Yuan Ti Characters

The favoured class of pureblood Yuan-Ti is Ranger. The favoured class of servitor Yuan-Ti is determined by his or her base race.

Yuan-Ti Society

The Temples of Sseth (A Yuan-Ti aspect of Set) are the center of Yuan-Ti life. Each Yuan-Ti community has one & bloody services involving human sacrifice are held regularly.

The Yuan-Ti tend to build their communities in or beneath ancient ruins. The leaders of the community - the priests of the temple - like to reinforce the connection to their heritage in this way. Other times, the Yuan-Ti occupy caverns, sewers or catacombs beneath Human cities. This positions them closer to the societies that they wish to conquer & it improves communication with their tainted ones. It also exposes them to greater risk should their presence be discovered, but this is a risk many Yuan-Ti leaders are willing to shoulder.

Abominations, the most powerful & least humanoid of the race, rule over the Yuan-ti. The ruler of the community is always an abomination, often one with a Human head. Halfbloods are considered the next most important because they exhibit more snakelike qualities than the purebloods. Halfbloods are captains and elite guards. The tainted ones come below the purebloods & the broodguards come last of all. Tainted ones sometimes serve in Yuan-Ti communities, but they are more often sent into nearby towns & cities as agents. Broodguards get their name from their function in the Yuan-Ti society. They guard the Yuan-Ti brood chambers, in which the Yuan-Ti females lay & then hatch their eggs. Broodguards also look after the young, making sure they dont wander off unexpectedly.

(Minor notice, as a result of the standing of half-breeds, Yuan-ti Purebloods would likely be fairly eager to interbreed.)

Yuan-Ti young are trained from a very early age in the use of their special abilities. The most important of these is the ability to change shape into a Viper. When young Yuan-Ti are threatened, they invariably turn into tiny Vipers & slither away through cracks or holes in walls, escaping by going to places where their attackers cannot follow. Elderly Yuan-Ti are respected for their wisdom, the result of long years of experience. Unlike many othe evil societies, Yuan-Ti very rarely turn on an aging leader, instead allowing the elder to pass his final days in somnolence & quiet.

When Yuan-Ti leave their homes, they usuall arrange themselves into war, hunting or spy parties, depending on the need. Purebloods & Tainted Ones often work alone or in small groups. They sometimes form Yuan-Ti cells in Humanoid cities, meeting in secret to discuss their findings & argue about how best to advance their racial agenda.

Language & Literacy

True Yuan-Ti speak Common, Yuan-Ti & the human language of their home region. This offers them a broad range of peoples with whom they can converse. They often learn Abyssal & Draconic as well.

Servitor Yuan-Ti speak the languages they knew before becoming a servitor. They usually pick up Yuan-Ti as well within a few months of joining the Yuan-Ti's service.

All pureblood Yuan-ti are literate, except for barbarians.

All Tainted Ones are literate, except for Barbarians & Commoners.

Yuan-Ti Magic & Lore

The Yuan-Ti have no new spells special to their race. Yuan-Ti Wizards & Sorcerors choose spells from the Illusion & Transmutation schools of magic, as these sorts of magics aid them in their deceptions.

Yuan-Ti Deities

Yuan-Ti worship Sseth, a serpentine deity conquered & consumed by Set, who now grants spells in Sseth's name. To them, there are no other gods worth consideration. According to Yuan-Ti myth, Sseth helped create their race & has been directing them ever since. Given the devoutness of the Yuan-Ti, it's clear that Sseth has a strong effect on every aspect of their lives.

Relations with other Races

Yuan-Ti dont care for any of the other races. However, they have a relationship with Humans, since they are one of the races from which Yuan-Ti are descended. Yuan-Ti wish to conquer, enslave, or assimilate (via their servitor draught) as many Humans as possible. In return, Humans loathe & fear the Yuan-Ti.

Yuan-Ti Equipment

The Yuan-Ti have no weapons or equipment special to their race. However, they insist on using only tools of masterwork quality. They favour scimitars & bows, & employ poisons of all sorts.

Animals & Pets

Yuan-Ti have a strong affinity for snakes of all types, especially venomous snakes. Many snakes kept by Yuan-Ti acquire the Fiendish Creature template & grow to frightening proportions, becoming creatures of supernatural evil & cunning. They protect Yuan-Ti lairs, serve as sacred animals for recieving sacrifices to Sseth & provide companionship.


The true origin of the Yuan-Ti is Sertrous, the Elder Evil. When this snake bathed in the blood of Fallen Angels, it became powerful, growing to gigantic sizes. When a Fallen Solar came to it, bearing the knowledge of creation, Sertrous took this knowledge to create his servants, the Yuan-Ti, in the depths of his marsh, and though he was slain, the Solar occaisionally resurfaces to rally a crusade by the Yuan-Ti against the races of light.

Yuan-Ti Pureblood Traits

+2 Dexterity, +4 Intelligence, +4 Wisdom, +4 Charisma. Pureblood Yuan-Ti are fast as a striking cobra, sharp as a serpent's tooth, and have the magnetism of a snake charmer.


+1 AC

Proficient with simple weapons, shields, light armour, scimitars & longbows.

Monstrous Humanoid Type

Spell Resistance = to 16 + Level

Spell like abilities 1/day - Animal trance, fear, darkness, entangle, neutralise poison, suggestion & baleful polymorph (Request if you need details on the spell-likes)

Spell-likes behave as if cast by an 8th level sorceror, the DC being 10 + charisma modifier + spell level.

Psionics - The Yuan-Ti can do the following at will

Detect Poison, Alternate Form (Viper), Chameleon (Grants +8 Hide), Produce Acid (touch deals 1d6 acid damage if wished)

Aversion - The Yuan-Ti can instill a fear of snakes & Yuan-Ti in a victim, which has a DC 17 will save.

Automatic Languages - Common, Yuan-Ti, Regional

Favoured Class - Ranger

ECL - +5 (I suggest Yuan-Ti characters never be allowed Gold tokens, or perhaps to progress past blue, due to the race's powerful nature)

Tainted One Racial Traits

+2 Constitution. Surviving the transformation makes the tainted one stronger.

Poison Bite - A tainted one gains a venomous bite, DC 10 + Tainted One's CON modifier, dealing 2d4 points of temporary constitution damage. The poison can also be injected by way of kiss.

Poison Immunity - Immune to all forms of snake & Yuan-Ti venom.

Spell Resistance = 12 + half level.

Psionics - Poison 1/day, Polymorph (Viper) 3/day

ECL - +2

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