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Jovocs were tanar'ri demons whose small stature did little to impede their savagery or sadism. Born from anguish to sow strife, jovocs were perfectly willing to come to harm for the sake of spreading pain.
Jovocs were diminutive demons, bloated, 4 ft (1.2 m) tall creatures that might resemble a child or halfling from far away. Their rough, hairless skin was dark blue or charred black, resembling the bruised and battered corpse of perhaps a gnome left in the blistering heat to rot, their stench doing little to dissuade this impression. Each of their long arms ended in a three-fingered hand with long fingernails permanently stained blood-red.
It was their eyes, however, that truly gave away a jovoc's nature, pools of inky darkness that bulged from their rotting skulls, showing no emotion but a vacant, dead gaze. When prey made itself available, their mouths stretched impossibly wide as the gruesome demons grinned.
The claws of a jovoc could be used as deadly weapons, and their teeth were also (if not as) deadly. They were quick, nimble demons difficult to strike as they ran past their foes and healed from injury with great speed. They could also try and summon another jovoc once per day with about a one-in-four chance of success.
Perhaps most dangerous of their abilities was their "aura of retribution"; whenever a jovoc was injured, it spread the harm it suffered to all non-tanar'ri (and possibly all non-jovocs) in a 30 ft (9.1 m) radius around itself. Regardless of the source of kind of damage dealt, the suffering caused to those near the jovoc bypassed wards like magical resistance and immunity to certain elements, and could only be resisted through sheer physical endurance.
Jovocs were experienced in the art of the ambush, having learned to use their powers through years of training and practical combat use. The mobile surprise attackers used hit and run tactics when fighting larger foes, jumping into the thick of combat with powerful opponents with the intent to draw enemy attack, all to maximize the harm they did before dashing away for a few dozen seconds to recover.
The favorite tactic of the jovocs however, the one they often used when in groups, was to lurk beyond enemy reach behind some barrier like a wall or concealed by darkness, and then attack each other. After waiting a few seconds for their wounds to close, they could tear into each other once again, all the while the enemy couldn't fight back against the strange assault.
While weak singularly, the cumulative effects of their retribution auras made them lethal in groups, though rarely did they engage in melee around allies that weren't immune to their powers. Flying demons such as vrocks could use the havoc made by a jovoc warband, staying in the air before swooping down on runners and stragglers.
Normally, jovocs were found in numbers of, at most, three or four in gangs. However, intelligent demonic commanders realized their value, especially if combined with ranged and area attacks. Beings like mariliths typically led bands of them and maintained them in safe formations through threats and torture. Their ability to inflict the damage they suffered on others, for a unit to absorb repeated attacks and still bring ruinous revenge to the enemy, made them invaluable at the frontlines, and often they willingly served in the vanguards of demonic armies.
- Sneer, a jovoc warrior that led one of the principle fronts of the demonic forces against the eladrin of Androlynne.
- Mike Mearls, Brian R. James, Steve Townshend (July 2010). Demonomicon. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 121. ISBN 978-0786954926.
- Ed Bonny, Jeff Grubb, Rich Redman, Skip Williams, and Steve Winter (September 2002). Monster Manual II 3rd edition. (TSR, Inc), pp. 58–59. ISBN 07-8692-873-5.
- Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 148. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.
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