Tiefling Bloodlines

Tieflings are the result of the lingering influence of an ancestor’s pact with infernal powers. Characters whose ancestry is linked to a particular archdevil may have variant racial traits that reflect the supernatural characteristics of that archdevil and their associated domain. These connections are represented by the subraces below. Note that because the influence is magical, not genetic, it can change due to events in the underworld.


The following traits replace those listed in the PHB:


Ability Score Increase: Your Charisma increases by 2. Another ability score, based on your bloodline, increases by 1.


Infernal Legacy: You know a cantrip based on your bloodline. Once you reach 3rd level, you can cast a 1st-level spell once per long rest as a 2nd-level spell. Once you reach 5th level, you can also cast a 2nd-level spell once per long rest. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for these spells, which are specified by your bloodline. If more than one option is listed, choose one when you acquire it. If one of your bloodline spells has the ritual tag, you may cast it ritually.

Bloodline Traits

Vulgar

In most cases, the ancestral pact was made with an ordinary devil, not one of Hell’s ruling class, and the tiefling’s bloodline is vulgar and common. However, souls are used as currency in Hell, and frequently change hands, whereupon the magical contract binds to the new owner. If the ancestor’s soul is traded to an archdevil, tieflings can suddenly find themselves with a new bloodline.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: thaumaturgy
1st-level spell: hellish rebuke
2nd-level spell: darkness
Unexpected Inheritance: If DM and player agree, you can replace the vulgar bloodline with a different tiefling bloodline.

Lords of the Nine

Asmodeus

The Supreme Lord of Hell is charming and manipulative, a master of strategy and deception. He rules over Nessus, the ninth and deepest layer, and hides his true form in the depths of its endless chasms.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: friends or minor illusion
1st-level spell: command or disguise self
2nd-level spell: crown of madness or invisibility


Baalzebul

The Lord of Flies has been cursed with the hideous and sickening form of a monstrous slug. He rules over the toxic and poisoned land of Maladomini, the seventh layer.


Ability Score Increase: Constitution
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: infestation
1st-level spell: ray of sickness
2nd-level spell: ray of enfeeblement

Dispater

The Iron Duke is patient and cunning, the personification of vigilance and caution. He rules the second layer, his namesake Dis, and is the greatest weapons supplier in Hell.


Ability Score Increase: Dexterity
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: blade ward or guidance
1st-level spell: mage armor or shield
2nd-level spell: cloud of daggers or detect thoughts

Fierna

The Fiery Lady is short-tempered and hedonistic, but a virtuoso of emotional manipulation. The fires she ignites in the hearts of others burn as hot as the volcanic pyres of Phlegethos, the fourth layer, which she rules alongside her father, Belial.


Ability Score Increase: Wisdom
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: friends
1st-level spell: charm person
2nd-level spell: enthrall

Glasya

The Princess of Night and daughter of Asmodeus delights in verbal torment and cruel mockery. She rules the sixth layer, Malbolge, where beautiful gardens growing in a landscape of decaying flesh reflect the corruption beneath her deceptive surface.


Ability Score Increase: Dexterity
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: vicious mockery
1st-level spell: dissonant whispers
2nd-level spell: blur

Levistus

The Frozen Prince is charming but treacherous, and after too far-reaching a betrayal, he was imprisoned within a mountain of ice. He rules nevertheless over the vast frozen seas of Stygia, the fifth layer, through careful plans and a network of agents.


Ability Score Increase: Constitution
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: ray of frost
1st-level spell: armor of agathys
2nd-level spell: hold person

Mammon

The King of Greed is without scruple or limit in his relentless pursuit of the objects of his desire. He rules the polluted swamps of Minauros, the 3rd layer, with concern only for his own profit.


Ability Score Increase: Dexterity
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: mage hand
1st-level spell: alarm or floating disk
2nd-level spell: arcane lock or locate object

Mephistopheles

The Cold Lord rules the howling blizzards of Cania, the 8th layer, with brilliance and cunning, but beneath his cool exterior lies a raging inferno of fury, which breaks free when he loses his temper.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: frostbite
1st-level spell: chaos bolt
2nd-level spell: scorcher

Zariel

Fueled by wrath and hubris in equal measure, the fallen angel Zariel is hell-bent on winning the Blood War between demon and devil. She rules over the ruined wasteland of Avernus, the first layer, commanding her legions in unending and furious battle.


Ability Score Increase: Strength
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: toll the dead
1st-level spell: searing smite
2nd-level spell: branding smite

Infernal Nobility

Belial

The Lord of Pain and Suffering may be vain and lusty, but he is also shrewd in judgment and prudent in his political machinations. He shares dominion over the fiery desolation of Phlegethos with his daughter Fierna.


Ability Score Increase: Wisdom
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: create bonfire or fire bolt
1st-level spell: burning hands
2nd-level spell: flaming sphere or scorching ray

Cantrum

Cantrum was the first leader of the Dark Eight, the council of pit fiends who lead the military machinery of Hell. To increase operational efficiency, they pool their resources, including condemned souls, under the name of their deceased founder.


Ability Score Increase: Constitution
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: produce flame
1st-level spell: cause fear
2nd-level spell: flame blade


Focalor

The morose Prince of Tears is Mammon’s seneschal. He has power over storms and the seas, and will readily agree to do no harm when summoned, as he hopes someday to return to the heavens.


Ability Score Increase: Dexterity
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: thunderclap
1st-level spell: witch bolt
2nd-level spell: warding wind

Geryon

The Great Beast, deposed lord of Stygia, is a vicious hunter who uses the cold to weaken his foes from afar before descending on them in a bestial frenzy to revel in the intimacy of destruction at his own hands.


Ability Score Increase: Strength
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: primal savagery
1st-level spell: ice knife
2nd-level spell: snowball swarm

Hutijin

The Duke of Tempests is an enigma: unswervingly loyal to Mephistopheles despite having the power to challenge him, and source of a bloodline despite a reputation for hating mortals. Keen intelligence housed in a monstrous body bespeaks hidden depths.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: shocking grasp
1st-level spell: thunderwave
2nd-level spell: dust devil

Lilith

Consort to Moloch and then to Baalzebul, the Princess of Hell has used her seductive charms to navigate the tumult of infernal politics for uncounted aeons. Her schemes are manifold, subtle, and above all patient.


Ability Score Increase: Wisdom
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: mind sliver
1st-level spell: comprehend languages
2nd-level spell: mind whip

Malagard

The hideous Hag Countess was not a true devil, but a night hag who ruled Malagard until Asmodeus destroyed her to make way for his daughter Glaysa. Although she is believed dead, her bloodline nevertheless persists.


Ability Score Increase: Strength
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: chill touch
1st-level spell: sleep
2nd-level spell: blindness / deafness

Phongor

Hell’s Grand Inquisitor reports to Asmodeus on everything of interest in the infernal realms and beyond. He is a supreme spymaster, and has mastered every technique for extracting the truth from his informants.


Ability Score Increase: Wisdom
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: true strike
1st-level spell: detect magic
2nd-level spell: zone of truth

Tiamat

The Dragon Queen was, for a time, an archfiend in service to Asmodeus and the guardian of the gates of Dis. One of her incarnations in that role continues, as does her bloodline.


Ability Score Increase: Constitution
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: resistance
1st-level spell: chromatic orb
2nd-level spell: dragon’s breath

Titivilus

The Patron Demon of Scribes is a master of twisting words to confound and deceive. As Dispater’s envoy to the realms beyond the Iron City, he sows confusion and reaps influence from the resulting disarray.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: message
1st-level spell: bane
2nd-level spell: suggestion

Exiled Archdevils

Armaros

Because his mastery of crafting spells and artifacts posed a potential threat, Asmodeus banished the Resolver of Enchantments to Avernus and forbade any contact with him. Armaros finds this no great hardship, caring only for his studies.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: prestidigitation
1st-level spell: identify
2nd-level spell: magic weapon

Cahor

Although the Deceiver is a master of illusion and a canny schemer, his untrustworthiness and habits of covert disobedience make him useless to the hierarchy of Hell and despised by his fellows.


Ability Score Increase: Wisdom
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: dancing lights
1st-level spell: color spray
2nd-level spell: phantasmal force


Gargauth

The Hidden Lord embodies the corruption of power and the rot of betrayal. Exiled from Hell entirely, he wanders the mortal realms inflicting his wicked sense of humor upon all those he encounters in his quest for apotheosis.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: prestidigitation
1st-level spell: hideous laughter
2nd-level spell: alter self

Hazzael

Vain and arrogant, The Caustic Serpent whiles away his exile in pursuit of impractical and self-indulgent amusements. His epithet reflects not his personality, but his acidic bite.


Ability Score Increase: Constitution
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: acid splash
1st-level spell: caustic brew
2nd-level spell: acid arrow

Jaqon

The former Herald of Lies was banished for dealing too openly in information about his fellows. His fey and puckish facade conceals his mercantile and tyrannical ambitions.


Ability Score Increase: Dexterity
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: thorn whip
1st-level spell: entangle
2nd-level spell: earthbind

Kochbiel

The Shining Star was a great general whose cunning strategies won many victories before his liege was destroyed. His arsenals overflow with the weapons of fallen foes.


Ability Score Increase: Strength
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: sword burst
1st-level spell: magic missile
2nd-level spell: spiritual weapon

Moloch

The Grand Duke is of the cruelest and most physically powerful of fiends. He was cast out for his poor judgment during the Reckoning of Hell and its aftermath.


Ability Score Increase: Strength
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: lightning lure
1st-level spell: false life
2nd-level spell: alter self

Nisroch

The Hearkening Eagle was formerly Hell’s head chef and chief victualer of the infernal armies. He is also Hell’s greatest aficionado of poisons, hence his dismissal.


Ability Score Increase: Intelligence
Infernal Legacy:
Cantrip: poison spray
1st-level spell: detect poison and disease
2nd-level spell: protection from poison

Summary Table

Bloodline ASI Cantrip 1st level spell 2nd level spell
Geryon Str primal savagery ice knife snowball swarm
Kochbiel Str sword burst magic missile spiritual weapon
Malagard Str chill touch sleep blindness / deafness
Moloch Str lightning lure false life alter self
Zariel Str toll the dead searing smite branding smite
Dispater Dex guidance mage armor detect thoughts
" " blade ward shield cloud of daggers
Focalor Dex thunderclap witch bolt warding wind
Glasya Dex vicious mockery dissonant whispers blur
Jaqon Dex thorn whip entangle earthbind
Mammon Dex mage hand floating disk* locate object
" " " alarm* arcane lock
Baalzebul Con infestation ray of sickness ray of enfeeblement
Cantrum Con produce flame cause fear flame blade
Hazzael Con acid splash caustic brew acid arrow
Levistus Con ray of frost armor of agathys hold person
Tiamat Con resistance chromatic orb dragon's breath
Armaros Int magic stone identify* magic weapon
Asmodeus Int minor illusion disguise self invisibility
" " friends command crown of madness
Gargauth Int prestidigitation hideous laughter alter self
Hutijin Int shocking grasp thunderwave dust devil
Mephistopheles Int frostbite chaos bolt scorcher
Nisroch Int poison spray detect poison and disease* protection from poison
Titivilus Int message bane suggestion
Vulgar Int thaumaturgy hellish rebuke darkness
Belial Wis create bonfire burning hands flaming sphere
" " fire bolt " scorching ray
Cahor Wis dancing lights color spray phantasmal force
Fierna Wis friends charm person enthrall
Lilith Wis mind sliver comprehend languages* mind whip
Phongor Wis true strike detect magic* zone of truth

*can be cast ritually

Other Racial Variants

The default tiefling listed in the PHB represents the vulgar bloodline, which is not tied to a specific archdevil.

The Feral variant can be combined with bloodlines by swapping Dexterity and Charisma in the ability score increase.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Winged variant can technically be combined with any of the bloodlines, although it overwrites everything except the ability score increase, so there’s not much point.

The Hellfire variant is superseded by the bloodline of Belial, and the Devil’s Tongue variant is superseded by the bloodline of Glasya.

Designer’s Notes

I was reading about the variant tiefling subraces listed in official materials, and started looking up the associated archdevils on various wikis. I found that many of them didn’t make much sense to me or felt like they didn’t have a strong and consistent theme that matched the lore, so I started poking at them, and long story short, I got carried away and ended up fixing up the existing bloodlines and making up eighteen more.

Although it’s moot given the new rules for custom lineage, I spread the secondary stat bonus around on the grounds that, one, surely not all devils are known primarily for their smarts, and two, there should be a few options to choose from no matter what class you’re playing. I haven’t tried to rigorously balance spell selection, I just aimed to pick sets of spells that fit with the lore for each archdevil, hang together thematically, have minimal overlap with other bloodlines, and seem like they would appeal to some character concept or another. A few bloodlines get multiple options to choose from because they seemed to be equally good matches and quite frankly I couldn’t pick.

There are two archdevils for each layer (the ruler and one other), plus Tiamat and a handful of exiles to round things out. A couple of the exiled bloodlines are a bit of a reach lore-wise, but after you’ve exhausted the ruling and deposed lords the lore starts to get a little thin.

         --Dr. Tectonic