The exact meaning of the term "cambion" has differed over the years. Some sources stated a "true" cambion" was the union of a planetouched woman (usually a tiefling) and a tanar'ri. They also further delineated this terminology to create "noble cambions": marquis and baron cambions were similarly sired by a demon lord father and a female humanoid half-fiend. After the Spellplague of 1385 DR, the terminology and usage of this term shifted to mean the union of a mortal female and a devil. The offspring of a mortal male and a succubus was a different creature known as an alu-fiend.
The mothers of true cambions always died in childbirth, serving to strand the newborn on the Material Plane, where it would be orphaned, or in the Abyss where it would be abused by the demons who looked down upon such children. Never accepted by either society, cambions invariably grew up bitter and twisted but, due to their powers, they often became exceptional assassins. Many though, were made ambassadors to the worshipers of various demonic powers, usually Graz'zt, Demogorgon, Orcus and Lolth.
Loners by nature, they liked to get lost in the crowds of large cities, especially in places where people didn't ask questions. Good-aligned cambions were rare, but sometimes, if their mother was good- or neutral-aligned, they took on her non-evil nature and were subsequently doomed to a life of loneliness, as not even their demonic patrons would accept them.
Cambions excelled in luring mortals to the Abyss; the only demons better at it were succubi. They then warned demons of the mortals' approach and let them do what they did best so the souls could be turned into larvae or manes.
Cambions were very ambitious and always put as much effort as they could into whatever they attempted, maybe either to prove themselves to a parent or to themselves, but regardless, they made great leaders, information brokers, etc. and they were often catalysts for major events.
Cambions bred true with each other, but they often preferred to seek out humanoid mates to create tiefling children.
- Vheod Runechild
- Kaanyr Vhok the Sceptered One, leader of the Scoured Legion
- Isair and Madae, the children of Belhifet and leaders of the Legion of the Chimera
- Thraxxia, though described as resembling an alu-fiend, was the daughter of Graz'zt and a mortal female, and thus a cambion by most definitions of the word.
- Lorcan, sole son of the erinyes Invadiah
- Sairché, daughter of Invadiah
- Acererak, a cambion who later became a lich
- Kaddrus, cambion sent by powerful nobles in Tethyr to protect the Hhune family's secrets.
- Raphael, a devil that targeted a group of adventurers who were infected with modified illithid tadpoles in the late 15th century DR.
Behind the Scenes
In 1st- and 2nd-edition Dungeons & Dragons, and by extension the Forgotten Realms, "cambion" was a term that meant the always-male offspring of a demon and a human female. In 3rd edition, it was a synonym for any humanoid half-fiend (according to the Monster Manual 3rd edition). The Expedition to the Demonweb Pits adventure threw in a third definition, claiming that a cambion was the child of a demon and a tiefling. Then, with 4th edition a fourth meaning was given: the child of a human and a devil. In the 5th Edition Monster Manual, cambions are simply the offspring of any variety of fiend with any humanoid.
- Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins (2014-09-30). Monster Manual 5th edition. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 36. ISBN 978-0786965614.
- Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 98. ISBN 978-1560768623.
- Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 37. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
- Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 25.
- Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet and Monte Cook (October 2000). Monster Manual 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-1552-1.
- Colin McComb (September 1997). Faces of Evil: The Fiends. Edited by Ray Vallese. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 45. ISBN 0-7869-3430-1.
- Wolfgang Baur, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel (April 2007). Expedition to the Demonweb Pits. Edited by Michele Carter, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 195–197. ISBN 978-0-7869-4038-7.
- Mike Mearls, Stephen Schubert, James Wyatt (June 2008). Monster Manual 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 39. ISBN 978-0-7869-4852-9.
- Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 94. ISBN 978-1560768623.
- Larian Studios (October 2020). Designed by Swen Vincke, et al. Baldur's Gate III. Larian Studios.
Achaierai • Barghest • Canomorph (Haraknin • Shadurakul) • Hell hound • Hordling • Howler • Larva • Maelephant • Marrashi • Night hag • Nightmare • Rakshasa • Succubus • Vargouille • Yeth hound
Fiendish creature • Half-fiend (Alu-fiend • Cambion • Draegloth • Durzagon) • Tiefling (Fey'ri • Maeluth • Tanarukk)
Least: Lemure • Nupperibo • Spinagon
Lesser: Abishai (Black • Blue • Green • Red • White) • Barbazu • Erinyes • Excruciarch • Ghargatula • Hamatula (Stony devil) • Kocrachon • Merregon • Osyluth • War devil • Xerfilstyx
Greater: Amnizu • Cornugon • Gelugon • Logokron • Narzugon • Orthon • Paeliryon • Pit fiend
Baatezu of unknown rank: Advespa • Dogai • Gulthir • Jerul
Araton • Burning devil • Fimbrul devil • Hellcat • Hellwasp • Imp (Bloodbag • Euphoric • Filth) • Kalabon • Kyton • Seared devil • Stitched devil • Succubus • Tar devil
Caligrosto • Dybbuk • Guecubu • Manitou
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Draudnu • Ekolid • Golothoma • Laghathti • Sibriex • Uzollru • Verakia • Wastrilith
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