Bugbears were a massive humanoid race distantly related to, but larger and stronger than, goblins and hobgoblins. Like many goblinoids, bugbears spoke the Goblin language.[10]

Description[edit | edit source]

Bugbears resembled hairy, feral goblins standing 7 feet (2.1 meters) tall. They took their name from their noses and claws, which were similar to those of bears.[11] Their claws were not long and sharp enough to be used as weapons, so bugbears often armored and armed themselves with a variety of purloined gear.[3] Most often, this gear was second-rate and in poor repair. Many bugbears were chaotic evil in alignment, favoring stealth and surprising their opponents.[10]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Bugbears, like other goblinoids, had a reputation for being dim-witted and brutish. This claim was not unfounded and like their kin bugbears had easily provoked tempers and were prone to rages. Few bugbears overcame this flaw and their culture's brutal nature. Bugbear heroes, though rare, were heard of and could acquire significant renown if successful. Often the motivation for this change of heart came from the rewards earned from virtue, which in the long term were more pleasing than the short-lasting pleasures of evil.[12]

Combat[edit | edit source]

Balsag and his two giant rats standing guard in an underground chamber near Thundertree.

Unlike most creatures, bugbears were particularly susceptible to the effects of Bowen's flowers, which would knock them out within minutes.[13]

Society[edit | edit source]

Bugbears were often found in the company of other goblinoids, particularly goblins, since tribes made up mostly of hobgoblins and bugbears tended to be wiped out quickly by other races as a precaution.[12] Some bugbears also operated independently, though tribes ruled by hobgoblins were better organized and less savage. This was in part because bugbears had little patience for diplomacy or negotiation, preferring violent solutions to conflicts unless obviously overpowered.[2]

Religion[edit | edit source]

Bugbears once had their own pantheon, led by Hruggek. Bugbears often decapitated their enemies as a way to honor Hruggek, who was said to do the same.[2] From the Spellplague to the Second Sundering, the power of Hruggek was diminished and the god served as an exarch of Bane, the god of tyranny.[14] However, after the Second Sundering, bugbears began to follow bugbear-specific deities such as Hruggek once more.[9]

Other bugbear deities included Grankhul, the bugbear deity of hunting, senses, stealth, and surprise;[15][16] and Skiggaret. Local pantheons often included a god of earth, a god of fertility, and a god of death.[17]

History[edit | edit source]

Many scholars of the late 14th century DR believed that bugbears and goblins were both bred by the hobgoblins as slave races, with bugbears serving as elite soldiers.[2]

Nine bugbears working for the Xanathar Thieves' Guild dwelt upon the Dungeon Level of Undermountain.[18]

Four bugbears working for Yek dwelt in the Arcane Chambers Level of Undermountain, as well as twenty bugbears who served the Xanathar Thieves' Guild.[19]

Eight bugbears dwelt in Azrok's Hold, on the Sargauth Level of Undermountain.[20]

Notable Bugbears[edit | edit source]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

One useful trick: if ye face bugbears who have severed heads on spikes as trophies, cast a spell to make the heads speak. After that, ye can cozen the bugbears into doing almost anything.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

WaterdeepDungeon #29: "Nymph's Reward"Hordes of DragonspearThe Accursed TowerThe Dungeon of DeathCity of the Spider QueenExpedition to UndermountainPool of Radiance: Attack on Myth DrannorReclaiming BlingdenstoneScourge of the Sword CoastStorm King's ThunderTales from the Yawning PortalWaterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage
HomelandExileCanticleIn Sylvan ShadowsWar in TethyrSword PlayThe SummoningThe SiegeRealms of Shadow: "The Fallen Lands" • DissolutionThe SorcererCondemnationForsaken HouseNeversfallCharon's Claw
The Bounty Seekers Of ManshakaLegends of Baldur's Gate 3
Referenced only
Shackles of the PastShell Game
To Catch a Thief
Video Games
Pool of RadianceCurse of the Azure BondsHillsfarSecret of the Silver BladesEye of the BeholderGateway to the Savage FrontierDungeon HackIcewind DaleBaldur's Gate: Dark AllianceIcewind Dale IINeverwinter NightsForgotten Realms: Demon StoneNeverwinter Nights 2Neverwinter Nights 2: Mysteries of WestgateSword Coast LegendsBaldur's Gate: Siege of Dragonspear
Board Games
Temple of Elemental Evil Board Game
Card Games
AD&D Trading CardsDragonfire (Chaos in the Trollclaws)
Organized Play & Licensed Adventures
Defiance in PhlanEye of the Tempest

Gallery[edit | edit source]

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins (2014-09-30). Monster Manual 5th edition. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 33. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Mike Mearls, Stephen Schubert, James Wyatt (June 2008). Monster Manual 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 135–136. ISBN 978-0-7869-4852-9.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 29. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 136. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 32. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 12. ISBN 0-9356-9600-8.
  7. Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 221. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  8. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 137. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Mike Mearls, et al. (November 2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 44–45. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4  (November 2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), p. 119. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  11.  (1989). Monstrous Compendium Volume One. (TSR, Inc), p. 17. ISBN 0-8803-8738-6.
  12. 12.0 12.1  (September 2008). Forgotten Realms Player's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 20. ISBN 978-0-7869-4929-8.
  13.  (September 1994). “The Thunder Peaks and the Storm Horns”. In  ed. Elminster's Ecologies (TSR, Inc), p. 9. ISBN 1-5607-6917-3.
  14.  (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 180. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  15.  (May 1992). Monster Mythology. (TSR, Inc), p. 53. ISBN 1-5607-6362-0.
  16.  (1998). Demihuman Deities. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 151. ISBN 0-7869-1239-1.
  17.  (May 1992). Monster Mythology. (TSR, Inc), p. 44. ISBN 1-5607-6362-0.
  18.  (November 2018). Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), p. 13. ISBN 978-0-7869-6626-4.
  19.  (November 2018). Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 33–39. ISBN 978-0-7869-6626-4.
  20.  (November 2018). Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), p. 55. ISBN 978-0-7869-6626-4.
  21.  (November 2018). Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage. Edited by . (Wizards of the Coast), p. 33. ISBN 978-0-7869-6626-4.
  22.  (2014). “Lost Mine of Phandelver”. Dungeons & Dragons Starter Set (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 40–41. ISBN 0786965592.

Connections[edit | edit source]

BakemonoBatiriGrodd goblinNilbog
Miscellaneous Goblinoids
BugbearDekanter goblinGoblin ratHalf-goblinHobgoblinKoalinthVerdanWorghest
Related Creatures
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