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Giant bats, also known as dire bats, and sometimes large bats,[4][5] were giant bats the size of horses.[3][1]


Dire bats averaged 200 pounds (91 kilograms) and had leathery wings that stretched 15 feet (4.6 meters) from end to end. Their bodies were covered in shaggy fur.[3]


Dire bats hunted at night and rested during the day. They were stealthy and used echolocation to locate prey.[3]

These bats were easy to startle and tended to kill or drive away any other encountered creatures with their bite.[3]


In the 15th century DR, giant bats were commonly known for being the steeds of the Lance Defenders, the army of the dragonborn nation of Tymanther.[7]

Around 1374 DR, one could find them stabled by the Zhentarim as mounts within the Temple in the Sky.[8]



Dire bats flourished in the deepest regions of the Underdark[9] and Undermountain.[10]

Beyond the Prime Material plane, giant bats could be found in the Domains of Dread. With some claiming that they and other bat species were more numerous there than in any other plane of existence.[11]


Dire bats were a favored animal of the orc god Shargaas.[12][13]

They were used as mounts by members of the Shadovar military[14] and Zhentarim skymages.[15] Shield dwarves of Oghrann in the Upperdark also kept large populations of dire bats to use as mounts as well.[16]

Morgan Longbow being attacked by dire bats.

The drow kept dire bats both as objects of gambling and steeds. As the former, dire bats were used like chickens or dogs to fight each other, and the drow bet on the outcome. These fights happened either in the air or on the ground, in the latter case, the animals were specifically crippled. The latter use as steeds was dangerous for the rider and was done only in some drow cities. In that case commoners, which might well include children, were used, so that the damage to a community was negligible, if the rider died.[17]


See Also[]

  • Mobat, a huge type of bat, even larger than a giant bat.



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  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. 323. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. Robert J. Schwalb (June 2013). “The Last Slave Lord”. Dungeon #215 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 52.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 62–63. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  4. 4.0 4.1 David "Zeb" Cook et al. (1989). Monstrous Compendium Volume One. (TSR, Inc). ISBN 0-8803-8738-6.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 15. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Don Turnbull (1981). Fiend Folio. (TSR Hobbies), p. 14. ISBN 0-9356-9621-0.
  7. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 186. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  8. Ed Greenwood, Eric L. Boyd (March 2006). Power of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 38. ISBN 0-7869-3910-9.
  9. Bruce R. Cordell, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Jeff Quick (October 2003). Underdark. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 109. ISBN 0-7869-3053-5.
  10. Interplay (December 1997). Designed by Chris Avellone, Robert Hanz. Descent to Undermountain. Interplay.
  11. William W. Connors (1996). Monstrous Compendium - Ravenloft Appendices I & II. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 12, 70. ISBN 0786903929.
  12. Sean K. Reynolds (2002-05-04). Deity Do's and Don'ts (Zipped PDF). Web Enhancement for Faiths and Pantheons. Wizards of the Coast. p. 14. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-08.
  13. Mike Mearls, et al. (November 2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. Edited by Jeremy Crawford, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 186. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  14. Jason Carl, Sean K. Reynolds (October 2001). Lords of Darkness. Edited by Michele Carter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 88. ISBN 07-8691-989-2.
  15. Jason Carl, Sean K. Reynolds (October 2001). Lords of Darkness. Edited by Michele Carter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 103. ISBN 07-8691-989-2.
  16. Bruce R. Cordell, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Jeff Quick (October 2003). Underdark. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 166. ISBN 0-7869-3053-5.
  17. Drow Pets and Animal Companions. Wizard of the Coast. (2003-26-08). Archived from the original on 2003-07-03. Retrieved on 2019-02-16.