Rakshasas were a type of evil outsider from the lawful evil regions of the Outer Planes, though most lived on the Material Plane. They were powerful sorcerers and, although they disdained physical fighting as ignoble, could be dangerous in close combat as well.[citation needed]


A rakshasa could assume any humanoid form, so few ever saw their true faces. In its natural form, a rakshasa had a powerfully built humanoid body and an animal's head. Many rakshasas had the head of a tiger, while others could have the heads of dogs, birds, or other animals. The king of the rakshasas was said to possess multiple heads, each a different type of animal. Another physical characteristic of the rakshasa was that its hands were backwards: the palms faced out from the body when the arms were at rest. Rakshasa were capable of hiding their disturbing appearance at any time, as they could choose any humanoid form at will.[citation needed]

Rakshasa were cruel and wicked. They loved to pose as nobility, living a life of luxury and ease while many slaves and servants toiled under their command.[citation needed]


These rakshasas had the heads of white tigers and were skinnier than the common breed. They were unusually powerful spellcasters and specialized in necromantic magic. To use their necromantic powers to their full potential, the ak'chazar rakshasas often used graveyards or old battlefields as their headquarters. When working on one of their dark schemes, they often let their undead do the physical work while they stayed behind the scenes themselves.[3]
These rakshasas were shapeshifters with the ability to utilize different supernatural combat styles based on their current forms.[4]
Naztharune rakshasas had the heads of black tigers and were covered in black fur. They had few magical powers but compensated by being strong fighters, specializing in assassination. They lacked most rakshasas' need to be the leader of any organization that they were part of, often working for other rakshasas.[5]


Tieflings who had cat eyes were descended from rakshasas, as were some of those who had fur.[6]


Rakshasas were solitary beings, although they did occasionally cooperate with each other.[3] Since rakshasas were ambitious beings, as well as being solitary, sorcerous shapeshifters, they typically held leading positions in whatever undertaking they were involved in.[citation needed]

Rakshasas worshipped Ravanna, a ten-headed lesser deity.[7]




Further ReadingEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Wizards RPG Team (2014). Monster Manual 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 257. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual 3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 211–212. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Andrew Finch, Gwendolyn Kestrel, Chris Perkins (September 2004). Monster Manual III. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 134. ISBN 0-7869-3430-1.
  4. Richard Baker, Frank Brunner, Matthew Sernett (August 2006). Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 151. ISBN 0-7869-3922-2.
  5. Andrew Finch, Gwendolyn Kestrel, Chris Perkins (September 2004). Monster Manual III. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 136. ISBN 0-7869-3430-1.
  6. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 125. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  7. Eric Cagle (December 2004). “The Ecology of the Rakshasa”. Dragon #326 (Paizo Publishing, LLC), pp. 76–79.

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