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A sinister was a type of magical bat that resembled a flying manta ray. They were considered one of the deep bats of the Underdark.[1][3]


Sinisters were jet-black in color and had 9‑foot (2.7‑meter) wingspans. They had no discernible necks, nor did they have visible fingerbones, as did true bats.[1][3]


Despite their name, which came from their appearance and their tendency to hover in a creepy way, sinisters were not, in fact, evil creatures. In fact, they tended to be orderly beings and most were more intelligent than the typical human.[1][3]

Sinisters loved music, and many bards and Harpers had found themselves surrounded by a circle of silent, hovering sinisters when playing music over campfires at night when in the wilderness. The sinisters were harmless; they simply loved to listen to instruments and singing.[1][3]


Sinisters were not natural flyers. Instead, they had a supernatural levitation ability that allowed them to simply float in place. They used their powerful, large wings to propel themselves.[1][3]

Levitation was not their only magical ability. Sinisters were strongly resistant to magical spells and were at all times surrounded by a force field that extended 5 feet (150 centimeters) from their bodies while they were alive. The force field deflected mundane and most magical missile attacks. They also had the strange ability to magically stop creatures dead in their tracks, which they usually used to escape from creatures more powerful than themselves. Sometimes, they would use this power when hunting, if particularly hungry.[1][3]

Like most primarily subterranean creatures, sinisters had darkvision[1][2] that extended for a much farther distance than other creatures of the night or the deep depths.[1][3]


They had a powerful bite, which they primarily used for hunting but could use to defend themselves if needed.[1]


Above ground on the surface world, sinisters were most active at night, when they did their hunting.[3]

They were always silent, communicating only with their own kind through a form of telepathy.[1][3]

They were not usually found in large groups,[3] between two to seven at most,[1] so any knowledge of sinister society, if it existed as such, was not known to scholars.[3] They were believed to have long lifespans.[3]


Sinisters were an omnivorous species. They could survive on carrion, if they could not find other options, but they also supplemented their diets with flowers and seeds.[3]


Around 1374 DR, one could find sinisters stabled by the Zhentarim as mounts within the Temple in the Sky.[4]