Agathinon (singular and plural, pronounced: /ɑːˈgɑːθənɒn/ a-GATH-uh-non; also singular agathion, pronounced: /ɑːˈgeɪθiɒn/ a-GAY-thee-on listen, and plural agathia[note 1]) were good-natured spiritual messengers and warriors from the Upper Planes.
In their natural form, agathinon were somewhat elfish in form, standing between five and seven feet and weighing between 130 and 190 pounds. They had multicolored skin that shimmered like opals and eyes that glowed. Male and female agathinon had the same height and weight.
However, agathinon never appeared in their natural forms when on missions to other planes; they were always in disguise as something else. That something could be just about anything, humanoid, animal, or other creature, or even an inanimate object or weapon. In any form, agathinon radiated a magical aura.
When in the form of another creature, agathinon had could mimic both the physical and the magical abilities of the forms they took. Additionally, when in the form of a human, agathinon were known to be able to cast divine spells like moderately advanced clerics. In any living form, the agathinon could turn undead.
If in the form of an inanimate object, they were able to grant any good person using the object with the power to cast low-powered clerical spells and the ability to turn undead. If an evil person were to touch an agathinon in object form, he or she would be harmed by magical energy.
Besides their powerful ability to change form at will to something roughly their size—with the associated qualities and powers—and besides the inherent magical abilities common to all angels, agathinon could use clairaudience, clairvoyance, or extra-sensory perception to observe others at will, and they could hold others from moving. They were able to become ethereal or travel the Astral Plane whenever they desired.
Like other angels, an agathinon could not be slain if not on its home plane; instead, its spirit would reform on its home plane over a period of between ten and sixty years.
Agathinon were stoic and uncompromising. As warriors, they were fearless unto death. On missions to the Material Plane, they were benevolent and kind. They were utterly devoted to the cause of good.
Despite being warriors of the celestial realms, agathinon never fought in their natural forms; they always either transformed into a powerful creature to fight in that form or else they turned into a weapon for another warrior to wield. If somehow forced to fight in its natural form, an agathinon's touch inflicted damage from positive energy.
If in the form of a human, agathinon favored typical clerical blunt weapons. They did not wear armor; as shapeshifters, they felt hindered by such an outer "shell". They did sometimes use shields.
Agathinon were the warriors of the aasimar. If the Blood War ever spilled into the Upper Planes, the agathinon were the ones to respond. There were great multitudes of them in the Upper Planes, yet they almost always worked alone when sent to the Prime by a celestial stewards or one of gods or goddesses directly. In this role, their purpose was to aid mortals against evil.
When taking a form on the Material Plane, they most often chose a human form. A little more than a quarter of the time, they but appear as some other creature, and only one in ten times would they take the form of a magic object.
When serving as warriors, they were the elite troops of the celestial armies, found in the vanguard in numbers as much as a hundred strong. They usually fought in human form but would take the forms of more powerful creatures as needed.
- The original spelling in 1st edition was "agathion", a real-world term for a familiar spirit. 2nd edition changed the spelling to "agathinon". Whether this was a misspelling, an attempt to distinguish the angel type from the planar layer of the same name, or a distancing from occultic terminology is not known.
- J. Paul LaFountain (1991). Monstrous Compendium: Outer Planes Appendix. Edited by Timothy B. Brown. (TSR, Inc.). ISBN 1-56076-055-9.
- Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 5. ISBN 978-1560768623.
- Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 9. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
- Christopher Perkins (April 1999). Warriors of Heaven. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 37–39. ISBN 0-7869-1361-4.
- Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 25.
- slade, James Butler (November 1996). Netheril: Empire of Magic (The Winds of Netheril). (TSR, Inc.), p. 49. ISBN 0-7869-0437-2.