Tieflings are human-based planetouched, native outsiders that are infused with the touch of the fiendish planes, most often through descent from fiends — demons, devils, evil deities, and others who have bred with humans.Tieflings are known for their cunning and personal allure, which makes them excellent deceivers as well as inspiring leaders when prejudices are laid aside.
Although their evil ancestors may be many generations removed, the taint lingers. Unlike half-fiends, tieflings are not predisposed to evil alignments and vary in alignment nearly as widely as full humans, though tieflings are certainly devious. The celestial counterparts of tieflings are called aasimar.
Tieflings tend to have an unsettling air about them, and most people are uncomfortable around them, whether they are aware of the tiefling's unsavory ancestry or not. While some look like normal humans, most retain physical characteristics derived from their ancestor, with the most common such features being horns, non-prehensile tails, and pointed teeth.Some tieflings also have eyes that are solid orbs of black, red, white, silver, or gold, while others have eyes more similar to those of humans Other, more unusual characteristics include a sulfurous odor, cloven feet, or a general aura of discomfort they leave on others.
Tieflings have a number of abilities gifted to them by their fiendish heritage. By and large, tieflings are alluring and intelligent creatures, with a seductive aura in spite of their obviously evil ancestry. To a large degree tieflings are more capable of guile than a great number of races, but these are not their dominant qualities.
The appearance of any one tiefling often depends on the exact ancestry that spawned it, a bloodline that might remain dormant for generations. Diabolic or demonic tieflings might, besides the common horns and tails, possess a forked tongue, leathery or scaly skin, the smell of brimstone, or unusually warm flesh. Some accounts even hold these tieflings to cast neither shadows nor reflections. Some diabolic tieflings also sport goat-like legs or hooves. Tieflings descended from rakshasa might have furred skin or feline eyes. Most tieflings have only one or two of these features.
Most tieflings are aware at an early age that they're different from others around them, and are given to strange urges and desires because of their unusual ancestry. Few tieflings are raised with the love a normal human child might expect to receive and this shapes most of the race into bitter individuals who expect eventual rejection from all whom they meet. While some might follow this path towards evil, others reject it wholeheartedly and seek to make a good impact on the world around them, sometimes becoming the most heroic characters of all. Few can maintain this discipline however, and most tieflings fall somewhere between both extremes.
Like other races that are the result of the breeding of two or more others, tieflings have no true culture they can call their own. However, there are many archetypical features of tieflings that are not necessarily innate. This includes their attitude regarding their heritage and while some tieflings embrace it, others are repulsed by it, forging the two most common stereotypes of tieflings.
Magic and religionEdit
Those tieflings who seek out power through arcane magic are most often warlocks.Tieflings of all kinds, however, feel a draw towards the fiendish energies of the planes and tiefling wizards commonly specialize as diviners for the purpose of seeking knowledge of the Lower Planes or as conjurers so that they might summon the dark spirits whom they call kin.
Those tieflings who are religious are a varied lot, since no god holds more sway over tieflings than any other. Most tieflings call on one of the primary gods of their homeland, though there are exceptions. Beshaba, the goddess of bad luck, for instance, appeals to many of the race due to tieflings' collective sense of misfortune. Many evil tieflings who channel their dark emotions into aggression often find themselves in the service of Cyric, as well. Gargauth also draws a large number of worshipers seeking vengeance, as does Mask, who gathered tiefling thieves to his church. Shar, like Gargauth appeals to those with a taste for vengeance.
Being the resultants of fiendish interference on humans, tieflings have no true homelands and are found throughout Toril. The race was particularly common, however, in Mulhorand and Unther. Tieflings also have alarge presence in Thay, where many were slaves.