Foul smelling, demonic brutes
What are hezrous?
Hezrous are demons with a distinct lack of personal hygiene. This is generally tolerated by the other demons, partly because most of them are grotesque anyway, and partly because their stench can prove a powerful asset in combat. On top of this, they are brutish creatures, capable of tearing most mortals apart.
The legions of the Abyss typically use hezrous as sergeants, capable of bullying the rank and file into obedience, while being too unintelligent to stab their masters in the back.
On their own, hezrous aren’t overly problematic for a group of adventurers to fight as they can easily be dealt with at range. However, when part of a group of demons or at close quarters, they can cause plenty of damage to all but the most seasoned adventurers.
The following is the official stat block for a hezrou as detailed in the Monster Manual and the SRD 5.1.
Large fiend (demon), chaotic evil
Armor Class 16 (natural armor)
Hit Points 136 (13d10 + 65)
Speed 30 ft.
|19 (+4)||17 (+3)||20 (+5)||5 (-3)||12 (+1)||13 (+1)|
Saving Throws Str +7, Con +8, Wis +4
Damage Resistances cold, fire, lightning; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities poisoned
Senses darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 11
Languages Abyssal, telepathy 120 ft.
Challenge 8 (3,900 XP)
Magic Resistance. The hezrou has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.
Stench. Any creature that starts its turn within 10 feet of the hezrou must succeed on a DC 14 Constitution saving throw or be poisoned until the start of its next turn. On a successful saving throw, the creature is immune to the hezrou’s stench for 24 hours.
Multiattack. The hezrou makes three attacks: one with its bite and two with its claws.
Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 15 (2d10 + 4) piercing damage.
Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (2d6 + 4) slashing damage.
|Weight||About 750 pounds|
Hezrous look like large, bipedal toads. Of course, they are demons so add to that a foul smell capable of poisoning even the hardiest of adventurers, a wide mouth of sharp teeth and powerful limbs capable of a huge amount of destruction. They also have a lair of organic armor beneath their skin, having been built specifically for combat by the sibriexes.
Hezrous are foul-tempered bullies. This lends them well to serving greater demons by beating lesser demons into submission. They’re not too bright either which makes them less of a threat to their demonic overlords as they are rarely smart enough to stab a greater demon in the back.
Hezrous have a great love of combat making them great foot soldiers. However, they are capable of some tactical ability, organising lesser demons in combat as well as negotiating basic trade deals with mortals and other demons, however, they rarely engage in tempting mortals as the finer arts of deception are beyond these creatures. Having said this, they will occasionally engage in this form of activity with ther less intelligent beings such as trolls or hill giants.
Hezrous are quite numerous in the Abyss and as such, are seen as relatively expendable. To negate this, hezrous tend to try to impress their masters and ensure that they are viewed as useful and needed. This makes them great underlings and they are used extensively as enforcers and sergeants within the Abyss.
Playing as a hezrou
Hezrous very much play the role of the brawn of a demon army. They’re tough and capable warriors but not overly smart. They often fight alongside weaker demons, ordering/beating them into following their commands.
Despite their lack of intellect and their brute force approach, hezrous can at times show an aptitude for diplomacy. Often this takes the form of trade (scheming is beyond a hezrou). This means that you probably won’t be tempting characters but you may still have interactions with them beyond combat.
If you do end up fighting with a hezrou, I’d suggest some of the below battle tactics:
- Share your stench: Your stench is a powerful tool. Invoke poisoned on creatures within 10ft of you without using an action. So get in nice and close.
- Stay close to your enemies: You’re a close combat specialist with nothing in the way of ranged combat, so you’ll want to get close to your enemies where you can deal a fair bit of damage. Consider targeting ranged characters and spellcasters who likely have less constitution to resist your stench and can be killed more easily.
- Pack tactics: Hezrous lack a variety of attacks and tactics so having supportive monsters provide different tactics is helpful. You can use creatures like dretches for swarm tactics and overrun the party and/or bring in demons with different abilities like vrocks for their speed or glabrezus for their spellcasting.
- Resistances: You’re resistant to quite a lot of damage types, but remain vulnerable to some attacks. Focus on targeting characters with magical weapons and damage types you’re most vulnerable to.
Hezrous are dangerous in close combat, but lack variety in battle tactics. I’d suggest the following tactics when fighting hezrous:
- Stay out of melee range: Hezrous have no ranged options and they’re only average speed. Staying out of range of them isn’t too difficult if you’re in an open area. Consider climbing high, flying, levitating or just moving out of melee range. Hezrous will do a lot of damage if they get close though.
- Low intelligence: Hezrous have a low intelligence (and their wisdom and charisma are only slightly above average). They’re a good target for saving throw spells against these abilities, especially intelligence. Intelligence saving throws aren’t overly common, but spells like enemies abound can be hugely effective against hezrous, especially as they can easily harm a lot of their allies.
- Damage resistances: Hezrous have a lot of damage resistances. Make sure you have magical weapons and spells that avoid those resistances. You especially want to avoid making poison attacks against them.
- Constitution saving throws: If you do need to get in close to a hezrou, make sure it’s with your high constitution characters. You can also beef up your constitution saving throws with things like bardic inspiration and enhance ability before throwing yourself into the stench!
Looking for another creature to use in your campaign? See our guides guides about the various monsters of the D&D universe: