From lore and descriptions to traits and abilities, learn all about Tritons in D&D 5e
Tritons are similar to merfolk in that they are humanoids that live in the oceans and are able to breathe both in the air and in the water (through the use of gills). They differ slightly though in the fact that they have legs rather than a fish tail enabling them to live and function on the surface (though this isn’t their preferred habitat).
Trtions were introduced as a playable race in D&D 5e with Volo’s Guide to Monsters and have been updated with a slightly different set of stats in Monsters of the Multiverse. Our guide gives you everything you need to know to play as these proud, deep-sea warriors.
What are Tritons in D&D 5e?
Tritons originate from the elemental plane of water but long ago, some of the deep-sea horrors of this plane escaped onto the material plane. This includes nasties like the shark-like sahuagin, krakens and other nasty creatures you don’t want to meet while sailing. Feeling a sense of grave responsiblity for failing to prevent these creatures from entering the Material Plane through deep-sea portals, the Tritons settled in the Material Plane building underwater cities at the exits of these portals so they could guard the Mortal Plane from these horrors.
Tritons are humanoids with many similar features to humans but they typically have a blue or green tint to their skin and similar shades to their hair. They have fins on their arms, legs and sometimes their head too which aid their ability to swim. They tend to wear light, flexible clothing and armour to accommodate extensive swimming and regular bouts of combat.
Many other races would likely have considered the evils of the Plane of Water escaping onto the Mortal Plane an unfortunate accident and moved on but Tritons are beings of great honour and selflessness. While this paints a picture of noble heroes, Tritons are also notoriously proud and stubborn creatures with a distinct haughtiness meaning they often don’t make friends easily with other races, despite their noble tendencies. Equal to a Triton’s ability to be selflessly heroic is their ability to be unsufferably self-righteous, though some might argue that their combat prowess perhaps earns them this right.
How to play as a Triton
Tritons are notoriously arrogant, the only beings capable of protecting the Mortal Plane from the horrors of the deep. As powerful warriors that have earned their stripes in combat, they typically have earned such arrogance, much to the annoyance of other races.
Most Tritons find the culture and traditions of surface folk as confusing and barbaric, but they take pity on such beings (after all, they don’t know any better). If you play as a Triton, you’ll likely want to lean into this self-confident and arrogant nature, even if you’re one of the good guys. A Triton will rarely run from a fight, and if you do, you’ll likely feel a deep sense of shame and embarassment.
Despite your arrogant tendencies, you’ll need to make sure you get along with your party (relatively speaking). You’ll likely be noble and helpful, but it’s absolutely worth being smug about it as you do so.
Most Tritons prefer to live in the depths of the seas so you may want to consider what has drawn you to the surface as you prepare your character. You might want to work with your DM on a mission you’re undergoing, perhaps a creature that needs defeating that escaped to the surface or some other noble quest.
Triton features in 5e
|Ability Scores||+2 to one ability score and +1 to another or +1 to 3 different ability scores|
|Speed||30ft (swimming and walking)|
|Languages||Common and 1 other|
|Traits||Amphibious, Control air and water, Darkvision, Emissary of the Sea, Guardian of the Depths|
|Book found in||Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse, Volo’s Guide to Monsters|
If you want to play as a Triton, your character will have the following traits and abilities:
Amphibious – You can breathe air and water.
Control Air and Water – You can cast Fog Cloud with this trait. Starting at 3rd level, you can cast the Gust of Wind spell with this trait. Starting at 5th level, you can also cast the Water Walk spell with it. Once you cast any of these spells with this trait, you can’t cast that spell with it again until you finish a long rest. You can also cast these spells using any spell slots you have of the appropriate level.
Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma is your spellcasting ability for these spells when you cast them with this trait (choose when you select this race).
Darkvision – You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light and in darkness as if it were dim light. You discern colors in that darkness only as shades of gray.
Emissary of the Sea – You can communicate simple ideas to any Beast, Elemental, or Monstrosity that has a swimming speed. It can understand your words, though you have no special ability to understand it in return.
Guardian of the Depths – Adapted to the frigid ocean depths, you have resistance to cold damage.