Barlguras[1][2] (pronounced: /bɑːrlʌˈgɔːrɑːbar-lu-GOR-a[7] Loudspeaker listen or: /ˌbɑːrɛlˈgrəzBAR-el-GOO-ruhz[8]) or bar-lguras, also known as leaping demons, were bestial tanar'ri that resembled orangutans.[3] Their ape-like qualities reflected their savage nature, fearsome power and tribal mentality.[4]


Barlguras normally stood 5–6 feet (1.5–1.8 meters) tall,[3] although some were known to reach just under 8 feet (2.4 meters) and weighed 650 pounds (295 kilograms).[1] They were visually similar to orangutans, with broad shoulders,[1] long forelimbs, and short legs. Despite being capable of standing upright they normally shambled ape-like across the ground on all fours. Where their skin was exposed was grayish-brown, but most of their bodies were covered in matted reddish-brown fur, but they were capable of changing its color reflexively.[4][3][9] A pair of tusks that jutted out from their jaws in their terrifying and drooping visage, and they leered at their enemies with rheumy red eyes.[9][1] The key feature that distinguished them from orangutans was that their hands and feet each had six digits with noticeably lengthy claws.[4] Despite being capable of fighting without them, some wielded weaponry and wore clothing or armor.[3]


Barlgura were the most animalistic of the tanar'ri, but were neither true beasts nor very intelligent.[4] While still evil, barlgura were somewhat indifferent to the general dealings of the Blood War, and would rather be left alone by those not of their kind.[4]

Decoration of their territories was done with grisly trophies taken from their prey, as well as with totems and fetishes.[9][1]

Although they were telepaths, they also expressed themselves vocally and using body language by changing their fur color, such as brilliant orange when enraged and a dull grey when calm.[9]

They did not take as much pleasure in bullying weaker demons like dretches and manes, but viewed them as obstacles and annoyances.[3] They only begrudgingly dealt with demons of a higher status than their own, and only when they were clearly more powerful. Greater tanar'ri treated them with shocking cruelty when they misbehaved. They were also not quite as hateful as other demons; whereas most despised the lawful baatezu, barlgura did not possess the same animosity.[4]


Ambush predators at heart, barlgura preferred to jump their enemies while they had the element of surprise, and using guerilla tactics to win. They used their camouflage or invisibility powers to hide from prey before jumping out at them. Despite their seemingly clumsy legs, the barlgura were excellent pouncers, making massive running leaps.[3][1] They could rip their prey apart with tooth and claw or pummel them into a bloody pulp with their bare fists, although some used weapons and armor.[3][1] Barlgura preferred to travel through the tops of trees where they had more mobility and their camouflage was more easily usable.[4] Hunting in small packs was their favored method and, when outnumbering a foe, some would hold the target down while the others viciously savaged them.[3]


They had the power to see invisibility.[9] A small array of magical abilities was also available to barlgura, such as the spells entangle and disguise self.[1] They had the normal demonic resistances and they could summon one other barlgura for assistance, with a one-third chance of success.[3][9]

Teleportation was a common demonic ability, but the barlgura's was unique in that they could take other beings along with them. They used this power to capture victims and leave them trapped in isolated or sealed locations.[3]


Barlgura normally formed packs led by dominant males within the ancient forests and cliff-ridden mountains of the Abyss, far from any other demonic forces.[9] In some parts of the Abyss, barlgura formed tribes of 300 or more of their kin, and separated themselves from the normal politics of the plane. They formed crude governments, the only ones among demon-kin, and did not serve other tanar'ri, allowing them to operate by themselves and enjoy their lifestyle. Although their numbers protected them from being attacked by other demons, there were tales of balors that laid waste to these rebel factions.[4] When two tribes met, it always resulted in a bloodbath with only one tribe surviving.[9]

When forced to fight on behalf of more powerful demons, barlgura served as scouts.[4] When forced to work with other demons, they tried to dominate and manipulate less-intelligent demons and contradict the desires of their superiors whenever they could.[5]

However, barlgura preferred to hunt alongside their own kind in packs whenever possible.[4] Demon lords like Demogorgon, Yeenoghu, and Baphomet favored the brutal ferocity of the barlgura, as did other high-ranking demons that appreciated savagery.[2][10][11]


Barlgura dominated the Guttering Grove, the 90th layer of the Abyss, along with other fiendish simians and dire primates.[12] They also inhabited the Screaming Jungle in the Gaping Maw, the 90th layer, fighting gigantic dinosaurs for territory. Their patron, Ilsidahur the Howling King, dwelt within the leafy canopies of the Grove.[12][13]

At some point, two barlguras found their way up from the Underdark to the Sargauth Level of Undermountain, where they waited to ambush people who intruded on their territory.[14]






  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 Wizards RPG Team (2014). Monster Manual 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 56. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Mike Mearls, Stephen Schubert, James Wyatt (June 2008). Monster Manual 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 53–54. ISBN 978-0-7869-4852-9.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 Monte Cook (Oct 2002). Book of Vile Darkness. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 171–172. ISBN 0-7869-0672-3.
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 97. ISBN 978-1560768623.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 37. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
  6. Monte Cook (Oct 2002). Book of Vile Darkness. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 169. ISBN 0-7869-0672-3.
  7. Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 25.
  8. J. Paul LaFountain (1991). Monstrous Compendium: Outer Planes Appendix. Edited by Timothy B. Brown. (TSR, Inc.), p. 5. ISBN 1-56076-055-9.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 9.6 9.7 Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 29–31. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.
  10. Wizards RPG Team (2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 38. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  11. Mike Mearls, Brian R. James, Steve Townshend (July, 2010). Demonomicon. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 21. ISBN 978-0786954926.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 141. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.
  13. Mike Mearls, Brian R. James, Steve Townshend (July, 2010). Demonomicon. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 70–71. ISBN 978-0786954926.
  14. Christopher Perkins (November 2018). Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage. Edited by Jeremy Crawford. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 49. ISBN 978-0-7869-6626-4.


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