The rulers of Hell are the arch-devils, some arch-dukes and princes, others mere barons-but all with great longing to advance themselves and seize power.
Prince of Swarms
This gaunt old man-unwashed, disheveled, clad in ragged pants and a tattered coat, with stringy gray hair and yellow skin- stands nearly eight feet tall. Beneath his shredded clothing, his flesh hangs in strips from his bones, revealing innards swarming with insects.
Lord of Decay. The Prince of Swarms is the slow creep of decay; the worm and the locust that feed on life and death alike. He is the disinterested order that stamps out all voices that dare speak against the customs of the hive. Even among the unyielding denizens of the Hells, the Prince of Swarms is exceptionally rigid. He finds disorder painful and disobedience enraging. His lairs and his minions all follow the model of the hive, with each and every member obeying a specific function.
Born of Flies. The Prince of Swarms was created by Beelzebub when the Lord of Lies and Flies spat forth a cloud of vermin, that they might consume for him the first mortal soul to arrive in the Hells. The cloud’s essence melded with those souls and became something unique: a being of terrible power that called itself the Prince of Swarms. The self-styled Prince of Swarms has little interest in mortals, viewing the Material Plane not as a source of souls but as a chaos to be wiped clean and set to order.
A Fading Power. As the eons passed, the Prince of Swarms’s interests and ambitions deviated further from those of the Hellish lords around him. He grows ever more unyielding, ever more alien. Eventually, those below and those above him expelled the Prince of Swarms from power; none can say whether the Prince of Swarms allowed himself to be deposed. He was once nearly as powerful as the Arch-Dukes, but time and habit have weakened him so that now he is scarcely greater than the pit fiends. If he fails to molt and shed his carapace of familiar habits, his many foes need only wait for an opportune moment to destroy him forever.
The Insatiable One
A dark, droning cloud containing thousands of gray, thumb-sized wasps, shifts and swarms around the black silhouette of a tall human with glowing red eyes. The wasps, too, glow with the heat of a low-burning coal and are wreathed in foul-smelling smoke.
Faithless Servant. The Insatiable One is the inverted reflection of his unkempt, overly-unyielding creator, the Prince of Swarms, Hell’s Prince of Swarms, and may soon be his successor. The Insatiable One acts as the Prince of Swarms’s emissary to the courts of his rivals and to the mortal world as diplomat, spy, assassin, and scourge. Though he serves the rigid and resolute Prince of Hell, the Insatiable One shows little loyalty to his maker. The eloquent and sophisticated creature has betrayed his master in thousands of small ways over the centuries, and eventually may betray him utterly. Until then, the Insatiable One’s shifting hive mind is pursues an unquenchable lust for arcane mysteries, human interaction, and the material pursuit of unwholesome flavors and dark delights.
Joker and Devourer. The Insatiable One delights in comedy, wine, song, dance, food, and inflicting torture and public humiliation on his foes-he is a rapacious devourer, gluttonous and greedy for all transient pleasures. The Insatiable One abhors all permanency and leaves nothing in his path but ruin. He laughs with glee at the shattering of keystones, the stench of burning paint, and the hollow echoes of a library reduced to rubble.
Archduke of Greed
This massive demon is made of money. His corpulent body is clad only in a woven platinum loincloth and a myriad of golden bangles, necklaces, rings, and chains. His skin is a deep golden hue, and his bald head is surmounted by a magnificent crown.
The figure’s grin is wide, wicked, and dripping with avarice.
Rich and Ostentatious. the archdevil of greed, the Golden Duke, the Arch-Devil of Greed, embodies the desire for material wealth that is so prevalent in mortals, and he has grown fat on the Material Plane’s greed. Supplicants enter into service with the archdevil of greed, hoping desperately for a taste of the mind-boggling treasures that flow through his realm. The Arch-Devil of Greed rarely has to try to corrupt souls-they willingly cast themselves onto his counting room floor. Befitting his appetites, the archdevil of greed is a rotund devil, and massively tall. He clads his golden body in ostentatious wealth. His only concession to actual clothing is a scant loincloth woven from platinum threads.
Greed Embodied. The archdevil of greed’s greed knows no bounds. It is the one constant that allows mortals hope when dealing with him. If the archdevil of greed wants something badly enough, he spares no expense to get it, and even the lowliest supplicant can leverage that desire to his gain. Damned souls can be rescued from the Halls of Avarice by trading some unique bauble that has escaped the archdevil of greed’s collection, or by offering to deliver an even more valuable soul in their place. of course, such promises must be delivered, which means somehow coercing or tricking another living person into the archdevil of greed’s clutches.
Scribe of Hell
This unassuming man has walnut-colored skin and small horns, and he wears a simple, gray scribe’s robe.
Evil in Triplicate. Devils track everything, and therein lies the difference between the creatures of demonkind and the creatures of the Nine Hells. The devil responsible for all pacts, soul-stealing contracts, and documents signed in blood is Depending on your group of players, it might or might not be worth using the baron’s true name. Pronounced at the table, it’s likely to reduce grown men to giggles, but that might prove worthwhile as no arch-devil can stand to be laughed at. Perhaps this is why the Scribe of Hell maintains a low profile and works his evil in paper and ink?.
Serves the archdevil of greed. To all outward appearances, the Scribe of Hell is the most powerful servant of the archdevil of greed, though in the infernal chain of command his immediate superior is Duke Berith, the Duke of False Coins and the Master of Accounts. To the unbiased eye, the Scribe of Hell is at least as powerful as Duke Berith, and some believe he rivals the archdevil of greed himself. However, this is not reflected in public or even in the confidential lists of Hell’s feudal order. The Scribe of Hell is a sort of hidden archduke, and that is the way he prefers to operate, shielded by reams of paper and ranks of intermediaries.
Humble Appearance. The Scribe of Hell is a baron, but unlike most of the princes of Hell, he does not appear wealthy, powerful, or even outwardly malignant. His simple robe seems gray from a distance, but on close inspection it is actually a white garment woven with tiny letters that describe his history and deeds in the Infernal tongue.
Tome of Beasts. Copyright 2016, Open Design; Authors Chris Harris, Dan Dillon, Rodrigo Garcia Carmona, and Wolfgang Baur.