A skull lord was a formidable undead creature that commanded many types of lesser undead.[1][2][3]


Skull lords had a skeletal humanoid appearance, but had two extra skulls, one each side of the central one. The central skull was adorned with a crown. These undead carried a powerful staff of bone[1] that had a small skull on both ends.[3]

Being undead, these skeletal beings did not breathe or sleep, and didn't require any nourishment from food and drink. These creatures were very perceptive and had sufficient darkvision.[1]

Such undead lords often spent time seeking out dark ritualistic knowledge and claiming patches of territory around the dark passages of the Shadowfell. Only incredibly skilled necromancers were able to have a hold over a skull lord.[2]


These regal creatures were able to summon and lead several undead, who would fight for them in battle.[1]

They were powerful spellcasters, and had a range of spells from different schools of magic. Finger of death was the most potent spell in their repertoire, but they had access to many frost spells, such as cone of cold and ice storm. Skull lords were also skilled with using their staff in melee encounters, as well as evading attacks and resisting certain effects. Being struck with their staff of bone caused a release of necrotic energy, as well as the blunt damage from the impact of the staff itself.[1]

Skull lords had a large range of immunities and resistances. For example, they were immune to being charmed, stunned, poisoned, and blinded. They were resistant to all forms of cold and necrotic damage, as well as unenchanted weaponry.[1]

Each skull was attuned to a specific power; losing a skull would also lose the respective power. These powers were the ability to summon undead, spit bone shards, and tear a bone from an opponent, in turn using it to heal an undead ally.[3]

Once every month, skull lords could summon a spectral rider from the bodies of a slain rider and their mount.[3]


In the 14th century DR, it was first believed that these beings were created by the death of the powerful necromancer, Vrakmul. These skull lords desired to call Vrakmul back from the dead, and used their abilities to command lesser undead.[3]


Drizzt Do'Urden fighting a skull lord.

In the 15th century DR, it was thought that skull lords were actually first brought into existence in the multiverse by the Oerthian lich-deity, Vecna. After his plans to conquer Oerth were foiled, he bound his generals in threes, and combined them into undead monstrosities. The first of these triple-fused officers were exiled to the Shadowfell, and others (after being somehow created) followed suit. Since then, many skull lords and their undead armies have held claim over several parts of the Plane of Shadow.[1]

In the later half of the 15th century DR, Effron Alegni guided Drizzt Do'Urden and his companions through the Shadowfell. Here, they fought a mighty skull lord and its undead army of ghouls, ghasts, and other undead. The group managed to repel the horde of undead, and slay the skull lord. Effron Alegni recovered its staff and crown, both filled with great power.[4]

Notable Skull LordsEdit



Card Games


Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.