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Deepspawn (sing & pl) were monstrous aberrations that could birth many other varieties of monsters, known as their "spawn."[1]


Deepspawn were mottled grey and brown, and looked like rubbery spheres 14 ft (4.3 m) in diameter. Six arms, each up to 20 ft (6.1 m) long, projected from their bodies, three of which were tentacle-arms able to wild weapons while another three were jaw-arms, ending in mouths of many teeth. A deepspawn also had over 40 long, retractable, flexible eyestalks, but it extended only three or four at a time, well away from harm.[4]


A deepspawn could birth a copy of any creature native to the Material Plane.[1] To do so, it first needed to devour the creature. It then made an exact "record" of the creature and replicated it using ingredients from the surroundings. If the deepspawn could claim resources from the dead and dying on a battlefield, it could produce a new spawn every three days. Typically, it gathered materials from the wild and could only produce offspring at a much slower rate.[5]

Only an exact duplicate of a creature could be created by a deepspawn, and spawn even retained the learned abilities and dim memories of the original creature. Spawn had an intense, inborn loyalty to their deepspawn "parent" that could not be shaken, even through magic.[1] They were sent away to live on their own unless there was sufficient food in the area to support them. There were typically one to four spawns kept around as general servants.[5]


A depiction of a deepspawn.

Deepspawn possessed genius intellect, which was paired with an inscrutable worldview that made them quite dangerous. They laired in caves and ruins, often well defended by deadly traps and patrolling spawn. They created spawn to serve and protect them.[1]


Deepspawn preferred to fight on their own terms, and would bury themselves for protection and await enemies in easily defended—but also easily escapable—locations. They used all six of their tentacle- and jaw-arms to strike at foes simultaneously, and would wrap their tentacles around enemies to constrict them. They also possessed the innate ability to cast certain spells, including hold monster, detect thoughts, water breathing, and heal.[1]


The first to encounter the deepspawn were the dwarves of the Deep Kingdom beneath the eastern Shaar, which swiftly began a long campaign by many cultures to exterminate or make use of the strange monsters.[1] Circa -9000 DR, the dwarves of Shanatar engaged in a great civil war in which they made extensive use of soldiers created via deepspawn, leading the conflict to become known as the Spawn Wars.[6]

Over the centuries, the deepspawn fended off incursions from not only the dwarves, but races like the duergar and drow as well as more monstrous groups like aboleths, cloakers, and illithids.[1]

In the month of Eleasias in the Year of Larks, −183 DR, Darrom Ithal, the first king of Tethyr, was assassinated by the teleportation of a deepspawn directly into his throne room. This had been orchestrated by Amir Tarseth, the king's brother-in-law and leader of Clan Tarseth.[7]

In the Year of the Scarlet Sash, 679 DR, the recently founded town of Hillsfar was nearly destroyed by an army of spawn emerging from the Beast Marches, with the horde only being contained by winter of that year thanks to assistance from Cormanthyr.[8]

During the Tethyrian Interregnum, a deepspawn known as The One Below laired below the surface of the city of Zazesspur. On Mirtul 3, during a time period known as the Days of Terror, Zaranda Star and her Star Protective Services slew the monster and ended its chaos.[9] It had been allied with the Twisted Rune and a tanar'ri.[10] After that deepspawn's death, a second deepspawn, known as Clusterfang, joined the Rune and took residence under the city in its predecessor's place.[11]

Deepspawn and its trolls under Hellgate Keep.

In the mid-14th century DR, the mad wizard Radoc had a deepspawn in his forces that helped him to spawn many mongrelfolks, trolls, and other types of monstrous minions.[12] In 1367 DR, having gotten word that his foe Grintharke had fallen, Radoc took the deepspawn and his other forces to assault Hellgate Keep.[13] During this siege the deepspawn crawled underground and hid itself within an underground cave, close to the Chambers Below. After the siege on Hellgate Keep had failed, that deepspawn remained within this cave. Sparingly using his forces against the Keep's ruler, Kaanyr Vhok, and rallying his forces against him. It's actions soon came to the attention of the cambion, who proceeded to engage in many negotiations with the deepspawn that were half-hearted, for neither was willing to be subservient to the other. Some time after the Keep's destruction in 1369 DR, Vhok and his men slew the deepspawn's minions, injured it, and stole its accumulated treasures before caving in its lair. The deepspawn managed to survive this, subsisting off of spiders, worms, and the trolls it would spawn.[12]

During the mid-to-late 14th century DR, a business called Hired Horrors in Skullport began selling deepspawn for ten thousand gold pieces each. This operation was run by a cabal of four wizardsAurin the Generous, Chantos Graybeard, Ysele the Cat, and Lord Ithvar Wordkiller—who had figured out how to breed the deepspawn. Their operation catered to clientele looking to stock dungeons with monsters, and was capable of transporting deepspawn to anywhere on Toril.[14]

By the 1370s DR, the Zhentarim had begun abducting deepspawn and placing them along the caravan routes used by their merchant rivals.[1]

Rumors & Legends[]

Some claimed that a deepspawn dwelled within the jungle of Jundarwood, though throughout Faerûnian history deepspawn were often a source of blame for strange happenings.[15]

Some hunters and sages in the Border Kingdoms voiced suspicion that Bloutarrans had installed a deepspawn within a cave in the forest north of their town as it seemed that those townspeople always came back from a stag hunt with two or more prizes in hand.[16]

Around 1479 DR, it was rumored that the farmer Nars Thormil, who lived near Wheloon in Cormyr, used a deepspawn he had captured to duplicate thimdrors and sell them to the best eateries in Saerloon and other nearby settlements.[17]

Notable Deepspawn[]

Beautiful Flower, a deepspawn who resided in the Crypt of Orbakh.



Hellgate KeepPool of Radiance: Attack on Myth Drannor
Obsidian RidgeWar in Tethyr



  1. Monster Compendium: Monsters of Faerûn lists their size as Large; however, this is considered an error, as its listed dimensions (14') and the face and reach listed in both this source and in the "Monster Update" web enhancement of Player's Guide to Faerûn indicate that this was intended to be a huge monster, as in earlier editions.


  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 James Wyatt and Rob Heinsoo (February 2001). Monster Compendium: Monsters of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 32–33. ISBN 0-7869-1832-2.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Greenwood, Martin, Grubb (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 2nd edition (revised), Monstrous Compendium. (TSR, Inc). ISBN 1-5607-6617-4.
  3. Richard Baker and James Wyatt (2004-03-13). Monster Update (Zipped PDF). Web Enhancement for Player's Guide to Faerûn. Wizards of the Coast. p. 3. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-10.
  4. James Butler, Elizabeth T. Danforth, Jean Rabe (September 1994). “The Thunder Peaks and the Storm Horns”. In Karen S. Boomgarden ed. Elminster's Ecologies (TSR, Inc), pp. 30–31. ISBN 1-5607-6917-3.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Ed Greenwood (September 2011). “Eye on the Realms: Thormil's Secret”. In Steve Winter ed. Dungeon #194 (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 28–30.
  6. Brian R. James, Ed Greenwood (September 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. Edited by Kim Mohan, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 16. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  7. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book One: Tethyr”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 25. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  8. Brian R. James, Ed Greenwood (September 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. Edited by Kim Mohan, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  9. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book One: Tethyr”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 40. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  10. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book Three: Erlkazar & Folk of Intrigue”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 21. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book Three: Erlkazar & Folk of Intrigue”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 24. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Steven E. Schend (March 1998). Hellgate Keep. (TSR, Inc), pp. 28–29. ISBN 978-0786907861.
  13. Steven E. Schend (March 1998). Hellgate Keep. (TSR, Inc), pp. 5–6, 8. ISBN 978-0786907861.
  14. Joseph C. Wolf (1999). Skullport. (TSR, Inc), p. 39. ISBN 0-7869-1348-7.
  15. Ed Greenwood (April 1998). “Elminster's Everwinking Eye: The Border Kingdoms”. In Jeff Quick ed. Polyhedron #129 (TSR, Inc.), p. 11.
  16. Ed Greenwood (February 1996). “Elminster's Everwinking Eye: The Border Kingdoms: Blackbarn and Bloutar”. In Duane Maxwell ed. Polyhedron #116 (TSR, Inc.), p. 11.
  17. Ed Greenwood (September 2011). “Eye on the Realms: Thormil's Secret”. In Steve Winter ed. Dungeon #194 (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 30–31.
  18. Sean K. Reynolds (2000). Pool of Radiance: Attack on Myth Drannor. Edited by Michele Carter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 43. ISBN 0-7869-1710-5.