Otyughs (pronounced: /ˈɑːtjʌgzAT-yugz[6][7]) were a type of gulguthra,[8][9] strange aberrations that dwelt underground and delighted in the eating of filth and offal.[3]

Description[edit | edit source]

Otyughs were strange-looking creatures, with bloated, oval-shaped bodies around 8 feet (2.4 meters) wide that stood on three shuffling elephantine legs and had a disgusting, rock-like hide. They had a pair of long tentacles that were bedecked in rough thorny growths and ended in leaf-shaped pads bearing rows of more sharp spikes. A third tentacle sprouted from the top of the otyugh's body, forming a vine-like stalk standing some 2 feet (61 centimeters) high, and ended in a pair of eyes and an olfactory organ. The body of the creature contained a massive fang-filled mouth, shaped like a crude gash through its center. A typical otyugh was around 500 pounds (230 kilograms) in mass.[3]

Behavior[edit | edit source]

An otyugh's body motion when running.

Despite its appearance and habits, an otyugh was somewhat intelligent and capable of speech in the Common tongue.[3]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Due to the nature of the otyughs' appetites, their mouths were filthy and often carried diseases like filth fever, inflicted with a bite.[3]

Combat[edit | edit source]

Otyughs were generally content to stay hidden in their lairs, usually only attacking living creatures if they felt threatened or hungry. They would slash prey with their thorny tentacles, or use them to grab and squeeze creatures and drag them into their maws.[3]

History[edit | edit source]

In the Arena of Blood in Manshaka, hungry otyughs were kept to devour the carcasses of the slain, but they would seize an unlucky contestant given the chance. In the Year of the Prince, 1357 DR, Vajra Valmeyjar drove a troll into its tentacles.[10]

In 1357 DR, otyughs could occasionally be found in the sewers beneath Waterdeep.[11]

Ecology[edit | edit source]

Dwelling primarily underground, otyughs could be found skulking among piles of refuse and waste. They made such places their lairs, or else gathered refuse to fill their lairs. An otyugh spent the majority of time in its lair, burying itself in trash with only the sensory stalk protruding above the heap. It sat for hours on end, shoveling "food" into its maw with its tentacles.[3]

Diet[edit | edit source]

Otyughs were primarily omnivorous scavengers. They could consume almost all kinds of refuse and waste, such as carrion, offal, and many other things others would view as garbage. Nevertheless, they would take fresh meat when they had the chance.[3]

Usages[edit | edit source]

A hungry otyugh waits to devour the loser of a fight in the Arena of Blood.

Because of their habits, otyughs were often viewed as a convenient means of garbage disposal by many intelligent creatures dwelling underground. They would dump their garbage and waste in otyugh lairs, which would, most of the time, not attack them.[3]

They were also employed as guardian creatures in sewers and other foul areas.[12] For example, an amphibious otyugh was kept as a guardian for the sewer and river channel beneath the Temple of Mystra in Wheloon in the Year of Lightning Storms, 1374 DR. Instead of waste, it was fed regularly with fresh seafood: live shrimp, lobsters, and crabs.[12]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

See Also[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Dungeon #28: Visitors from AboveDungeon #30: …And a Dozen EggsCormyr: The Tearing of the Weave • Tomb of Annihilation
Card Games
AD&D Trading Cards
Referenced only
Organized Play & Licensed Adventures
The Sword of Selfaril
Video Games
Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of AmnCurse of the Azure BondsDungeon HackGateway to the Savage FrontierIcewind Dale IIPools of DarknessSecret of the Silver Blades

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Further Reading[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins (2014-09-30). Monster Manual 5th edition. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 248. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. Mike Mearls, Stephen Schubert, James Wyatt (June 2008). Monster Manual 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 211. ISBN 978-0-7869-4852-9.
  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. 204–205. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 283. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  5. Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 77. ISBN 0-9356-9600-8.
  6. Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 28.
  7. Dungeons & Dragons FAQ (HTML). Wizards of the Coast. (2003). Archived from the original on 2017-07-09. Retrieved on 2018-05-22.
  8. Ed Greenwood (April 1985). “The Ecology of the Gulguthra: Otyugh and Neo-Otyugh”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #96 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 20–22.
  9. Jon Pickens ed. (1995). Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume Two. (TSR, Inc.), p. 68. ISBN 0-7869-0199-3.
  10. Dan Mishkin (February 1990). “Cat & Mouse”. In Elliot S. Maggin ed. Advanced Dungeons & Dragons #15 (DC Comics), pp. 10, 12.
  11. Ed Greenwood (1987). Waterdeep and the North. (TSR, Inc), p. 27. ISBN 0-88038-490-5.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Richard Baker, Bruce R. Cordell, David Noonan, Matthew Sernett, James Wyatt (2007). Cormyr: The Tearing of the Weave. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 18, 34–35. ISBN 07-8694-119-7.
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