Saturday, April 7, 2018


A race of large humanoids of goblinish descent dwelling in Northern Asia, principally between the Yenisey and Lena river basins. Bugbears share much of their history with the norkers of Trakkatch Dran, who dwell along the Lena, and the hobgoblins of Vostoch, who dwell along the Yenisey. Their homeland is a large region dominated by the Tunguska Plateau called the Reaches of Nissi An.


They have many of the characteristics of other goblinish humanoids. Their infravision extends 60 ft. Bugbear females are as powerful as their mates, while their offspring will fight depending on their maturity (from kobalds through goblins to hobgoblins, before reaching adulthood). Bugbears are able to detect the presence of others by sound and smell. For this reason, they are surprised only on a 1 in 6.

Bugbears are uncommonly strong. They may be treated as having a 17 strength, or the bugbear clan generator may be used (see below). Note that the generator includes the AD&D for rolling a percentile number for exceptional strength.


Bugbears belong to two different groups: those living in the isolation of their homeland, these being the Nissi An bugbears, and those bugbears who have become attached to the wider goblin, hobgoblin and norker cultures, known as outworlder bugbears. The culture of Nissi An can be found on the page donated to that region. Outworlder bugbears are found throughout Eurasia, most commonly in the lands of their less powerful, yet more cultural adapted kin, in the lands surrounding Lake Baykal and the valleys of Lena, Yenisey and Ob rivers. They may be found in the forests of Eastern Europe, bordering the Germanic mountain country and throughout Scandinavia. Many of these bugbears in Europe came with invading races during the 1st millennia AD.

Most outworlder bugbears serve as mercenaries, relying on goblinish and orcish races to provide them with armor, weapons and occasionally training. Historically, bugbears have lacked the cohesion to create their own unique culture, borrowing much from others. The bugbears of the Nissi An are very primitive; the outworlders reflect the goblin motifs in the west and the hobgoblin and norker motifs in the east.



Some bugbears of the Nissi An have, through traditional methods of training, acquired levels as fighters. Usually, among adults, 1 in 9 bugbears will have training as a fighter of 1st level or better. A clan of 6-36 bugbears will typically include a fighter of at least 3rd level, though it may not. Fighters from Nissi An will typically be armed with godentags (2-10 damage), spears (1-6) and stone hammers (1-6), the latter designed to be thrown. They will not wear armor; all bugbears have a natural armor class of 5.

Outworlder bugbears will also have fighters among them and be better armed, typically with swords (1-10 damage), javelins (1-6) and hand axes (1-6). Typical outworlder bugbears will be armed with leather and shield, giving them an armor class of 2; more prestigious bugbears will be given better armor.


The holy men of Nissi An will be no better than shamans; effectively, clerics without spells. They will, however, have sage abilities in the clerical field. They will, therefore, have 1d12 knowledge points in a given study, and a d8 in other studies within their field. They will not possess knowledge outside their fields.


Some rare outworlder bugbears will have taught how to be clerics. There is only a 1 in 35 chance that any bugbear outside their homeland will be a cleric. 1st and 2nd level bugbear clerics are called "numinous"; higher level clerics are "priests." They are limited to 5th level. Bugbear clerics do not tend to possess a high wisdom and spell failure [placeholder] among them is common. There are no Nissi An clerics.


Very few outworlder bugbears may also be mages. There is only a 1 in 100 chance that any bugbear will be a mage. 1st level bugbear mages are called "medicants"; higher level mages are "mentors." They are limited to 3rd level. There are no Nissi An mages.

A table generating the make-up of adults in clans of either the Nissi An or of outworlder bugbears has been added below. The number of children in a clan, typically 0-3 infants and 3-8 children of various should be added if found in their lair.

For determining the make-up of a bugbear clan, see Bugbear Clan Generation

See Bestiary

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