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Friday, October 21, 2016

Dungeons & Dragons - A Guide to the Triple Realm of Azzagrat

In this guide, I am going to present an overview of the realms ruled by the demon lord Graz'zt, one of the major villains in the D&D multiverse. I'm going to give you my version of it, which combines material from all of the editions of D&D. This should give you a nice starting point to make your own version of Azzagrat for your campaign.

This material is drawn from:
If you only use one source, the Demonomicon actually has a really nice rundown of everything in the triple realm.

The Essential Information

  • Graz'zt rules the 45th, 46th, 47th layers of the Abyss.
  • The city of Zelatar actually exists on all three layers at the same time. Each of the three "districts" of Zelatar is different and has its own name: Fogtown, Gallenghast and Darkflame.
  • The layers of Azzagrat are connected by a river of salt.
The Layers of Azzagrat:
  • (45th) Rauwend: Home to Allagash, Zelatar (Fogtown), the River of Salt, and the Zrintor Forest. This place affects memory.
  • (46th) Barogund: Home to Tornbend, the salt swamp, and Zelatar (Gallenghast). On this layer, the ground projects light and shadows into the sky.
  • (47th) Voorz'zt: Home to Zelatar (Darkflame), the Bay of Choking Bile and Samora. This layer has a blue sun. Heat does cold damage and cold does fire damage. The blue sun makes it easy for people to disguise themselves.

Graz'zt: He is 9 feet tall and is "the perfect figure of untamed desire." To him, restriction is the only sin. He wields a greatsword called Angdrelve, the Wave of Sorrow.

Main Types of Creatures That Live in Azzagrat: Many of the demons and creatures who live here are handsome or beautiful:
  • Manes and dretches
  • Lamias
  • Mariliths
  • Vrocks 
  • Tieflings 
  • Succubi  
  • The Abat-Dolor: A race that looks like Graz'zt. Graz'zt's former wife, Elazalag, is an Abat-Dolor.
There are also a number of other creature types: Armanites, shadow demons, harpies, abyssal giants, lillitu, and alu-fiends.

Gates: All throughout Azzagrat are these "ovens" of green flame. Some of them are portals to other areas in the triple realm. Many of them are just flame geysers:
  • They appear at random. 1 in 3 is actually a portal.
  • They are 4-6 feet high. Peering through does not show the destination.
  • The green flame does normal fire damage: 2d6 fire.
Layer 45 - Rauwend

Viper Tree

Rauwend is best known for the vast Zrintor forest. The trees are creatures known as viper trees.

River of Salt: This river passes through all three layers and is quite deadly.
  • Getting within 10 feet of it might make you suffocate on dust from the grinding salt crystals.
  • If you fall in, you must stay "afloat" or else you will be reduced to red paste in d6+2 rounds.
  • Just reaching in to aid an ally does 2d12 damage to you.
Zrintor Forest: As you travel through this forest full of viper trees, you can spot plumes of dark grey smoke against the grey sky (Zelatar) and hear the tooting of a salt barge from the river of salt.

Viper trees catch fire easily. If a blaze breaks out, the trees hiss "Murderers! Flame Bringers!" Sometimes, Graz'zt enjoys watching them burn and suffer.

Allagash: This town was once part of a demon breeding program. An army of Orcus came and wiped the place out, and the weird demons here were reanimated. The invaders were repelled but nobody is sure what demons still lurk here.

Zelatar (Fogtown)

It rains a lot here. There are many merchants selling all sorts of things. The majority of the merchants are bariaur, gnomes, and arcane. Dretches and manes live in hovels here among slave gulags and rickety insane asylums.

The Roosting Wall: The city is surrounded by scythe-topped walls. 2,000 vrocks perch on the wall overlooking river of salt. This wall is smeared from decades of droppings. Just outside, farmers harvest colorless edible fungi.

Easy to Get Lost: There's a magical mental fog effect that makes details difficult to remember.

Lots of Parks: These are small, tree-lined walkways that meander among statuary stolen from many other planes. Some have displays of petrified plants - roses, daisies, daffodils, sunflowers and other stone flowers. Others have dangerous hanging plants, some with luscious red berries ("bloodthorn" that sucks your blood).

Gates: There are doors and arches that serve as gates to different layers. Many of them have long tongues that unfurl for you to walk on.

Viper Gate: This is a specific gate with two white, leafless tress on either side of it. The branches are topped with snake heads.

The Lich: There is an estate guarded by a lich loyal to Grazzt. The lich sits on a throne on a wall and strikes down any who enter. The lich holds one perfect white rose.

(Tavern) The Wandering Balor: This tavern has four elephant legs and it wanders Zelatar. To enter: Climb numerous snakeskin ropes dangling down.

(Tavern) The Whimpering Mortal: This dangerous place caters to drunk demons.

(Inn) Planewalker's Guild: This place also serves as a safehouse for the Planewalkers Guild, an organization of planar travelers. They use the Infinite Staircase, a planar connecting realm that connects to Azzagrat.

(Inn) Devil's Doom: An inn for out of town demons.

The Bonebreaker's Pit: This section of Fogtown is full of  punishment and butchery. Manes here are either food or they are turned into rutterkins to serve in the blood war. Manes will run up to heroes begging and pleading for mercy.

The Boulevard of Fortunetellers: This section is filled with tieflings, succubi and lamia fortune tellers/palm readers/hucksters. There is a pillar here made of 200 gypsy heads known as Grandmother Fortuna. It speaks only to Graz'zt and his favored consorts. Lamia spies keep an eye on it.

The Queen's Causeway: An undermarket that primarily sells gray chalky fungus in many flavors. There are wide stairs at the south end of the market lead to Gallenghast. This place is the hideout of Raxivort, formerly Graz'zt's slavemaster. He stole from Graz'zt and is in hiding.

Barogund, the 46th Layer

In this realm, sunlight shines up from the ground. The shadows are towers of darkness. The sky is dark during the day and grey at night. Visitors will go temporarily blind after 24 hours and they will be permanently blind within a few days.

Tornbend: This was once a trading outpost between demons and djinn who lived on an earthmote called Skyshrine. The earthmote has a chain that extends to the ground. The djinn vanished and Tornbend was abandoned. Skyshrine still hovers above it. Nobody knows what lurks up there, if anything.

Bloodseep demons now live in Tornbend. Bloodseep demons have translucent, cracked bodies that weep poison blood.

Salt Swamp: Home to Zhelamiss, night hag envoy of Cegilune. She runs a shabby wooden village. Spies in her coven of witches report to Graz'zt.

Zelatar (Gallenghast)

Gallenghast has a lot of villas of demonic nobles, markets, inns and lodging houses.

Outside of Gallenghast is a grass clearing. Monthly tournaments are held here which are known for their savagery and their extreme formality. Winning a death match can make you an instant celebrity.

(Inn) Sign of the Black Heart: This nn caters to the wealthy and powerful. Finding it is very difficult. It is built around a square central courtyard.
  • 50 gp/night
  • Security: Shadow demons and two vrocks. Rooms have alarm spells. 
  • Succubi frequently "visit" patrons.
  • Each room has an invisible quasit that spies for Graz'zt.
  • Menu: Fresh mane meat, larvae, blood pudding. Mortals are a delicacy.
  • Stables: 5 nightmares, 3 babau grooms. The nightmares are unhappy and don't want to be here.
The Wordsmith's Pit: Crowds gather around this pit and bet on gladiatorial combats that are often between a vrock and a captured devil. The master of the arena is Madjack Madarang.

The Running Market: Succubi and carnivorous demons buy mortals, larvae, and blood war prisoners here. Manes are cooked up and sold. Enslaved mortals, devils and yugoloths sold in pairs.
  • The demons like to let slaves escape and watch them get chased down.
  • Sentient creatures are sold as food.
  • Vrocks come here at night for scraps.
  • Demons often sample a slave - fingers, toes, an ear.
Chosen's Tabernacle: This is a profane cathedral of Graz'zt's cult. The high priestess, Lavendeth, is a favored consort of Graz'zt.

Voorz'zt, the 47th Layer

In this realm, a blue sun hangs in the sky. Fire does cold damage, and cold does fire damage.

The Bay of Choking Bile: The river of salt cascades off of cliffs into this alkaline body that mixes with the Blood Sea of the Abyss. Decomposing demon fish float and rot here. On the shores, Graz'zt keeps planar vessels and multiple Chaos Ships that can navigate the Abyss. His flagship is known as Waukeen's Tears.


Samora is a lawless den of vice and depraved dreams. Open sewers run down the center of the city's streets. The city is full of perfumed spires and pleasure pits.

Ruler: Maretta, Lady of the Counting House.

The Lady's Lancers: These are 13 alu-fiend guards who patrol Samora. They fly, wield lances and they usually work alone.

The Counting-House: A dungeon beneath the city.

(Boarding House) The Golden Opportunity: In the back room lurks Rule of Three, a wily old githzerai sage who reports to Graz'zt on his efforts to unite the fiends.

(Inn) Maretta's Beds: Owned by Maretta, luxurious and reasonably priced. The owner may pay nocturnal visits to attractive customers.

(Inn) The Sleeping Berk: There is an oven of green flame outside the inn. The gate takes you to the outskirts of Zelatar.

(Tavern) The Weeping Goddess: Lots of fiends, frequent bar brawls.

(Tavern) The Lord's Pawns: The clientele are servants of Lady Marretta's estates. Telepathic conversations can be "overheard" if you dare to get close enough.

(Tavern) The Sodden Solar: You can meet a guide here named Warwick Osseyes. He's a tiefling with black eyes and sharp nails. 

Drug Parlor: These places frequently sell a drug called lubix. You sprinkle the powder into a wound and bandage it. You will feel one minute of intense pain and then you will feel no pain for an extended period of time.

Slave Plaza: They sell humans, demihumans, humanoids, monsters, planar creatures. Elves and halflings are very popular.

Breweries: There are 3 of them. They make Malefic Mead, Baatezu Blood Wine and Deva's Bile. These are deadly to mortals. You can also buy Terran Brandy for 500 gp. It is alcohol distilled from the essence of dying fey.

Barracks: These places house blood war soldiers but are frequently unoccupied.

Stockyards: They keep herd animals from across the planes for eating. My list of creatures includes rothe, giant space hamsters, and unicorns. Wealthy demons consider unicorn horns to be a status symbol. They use them to pick their teeth after a meal.

Zelatar (Darkflame) 

This district is full of mazelike alleys and it a haven for those who do not wish to be found. This is a home to Graz'zt's deadliest assassins, who are shadow demons, succubi and alkiliths.

Zul's Hanging Garden: Hundreds of traitors hang above writhing carnivorous plants. Their piteous moans are like music to the plants who dine on their blood and bile.

The Great Green Oven: This oven/portal is the size of a small mansion. Supposedly it can move travelers to any point in the city. Nobody's sure if it teleports you or kills you. It doesn't seem to affect powerful demons.

The Argent Palace

This palace of white stone is where Graz'zt lives. It is in Zelatar and thus exists on all three layers of Azzagrat simultaneously. It is situated on a plateau 50 feet above the town. As you approach, you can hear screams as Graz'zt slowly tortures and kills sacrifices given to him by mortal supplicants.

Guards: It is guarded by 121 lamias, 66 succubi, 23 vrocks, and 23 priestesses of Graz'zt.

Approaching the Palace: This is known as Viper Tree Boulevard. There are 66 viper trees lining the path. Every third viper tree is a portal to elsewhere in the city. Demons and tieflings can see these portals clearly with no check required.

The Gate of Hands: A gate that is bone white and marked with thousands of fingers and hands.

Front Door: Huge gates of polished stone stand at the head of an avenue lined with statues of Grazzt. The legendary towers of the Argent Palace rise above them, piercing the gloom of the sky with harsh light. Demon guards stalk the broad courtyard in front of the gates.

  • It has 66 ivory towers.
  • It contains 100 cold, mirrored halls that are full of wandering bodaks.
  • There are portals to the Plain of Infinite Portals, Pandemonium, and Gehenna.
The Mirrored Halls: These halls are extremely cold and it is easy to get utterly lost in them. Bodaks wander these halls. I use the 5e bodak stats from right here, they worked great for me.

Don't Die: If you die here, you will turn into a bodak and you will wander his palace for all eternity

Each tower is different. There are exterior walkways high up that connect them. Many of those walkways are guarded by vrocks and balors. Here are some of them:

The Hundredfold Hall of Silver: This tower is lined with mirrors and guarded by a legion of simpering mirror mephits.

The Lady's Study: This is where Iggwilv the Witch-Queen stays when she visits.

The Spiral of Storms: Graz'zt collects storms and keeps them in magic rooms. He uses them as tests for guard recruits.

The Tower of Doors: This tower has numerous portals to different places:
  • A dragon's lair in Pandemonium.
  • An iron fortress on the Plain of 1,000 Portals ruled by Zryznian, an ultraloth slaver ally of Grazzt.
The Velvet Realm: This tower is swathed in black and scarlet, inhabited by Grazzt's personal pleasure slaves. Succubi, incubi, lamias, all sorts of creatures from all over the multiverse.

Weal of the Blooded: A cabal of 6 vampires loyal to Grazzt. This place resembles a blood-soaked eladrin temple.

Beneath the palace are tunnels that are somewhat forgotten.

Chasme Tunnels: A disused access point all but forgotten by all but the lowliest demons. One links to a guest room in the palace:

Guest Room: It has crystal chandeliers, golden candelabras, and walls with works of art: Graz'zt as lord of the abyss, a triple realm vista, portrait of his sister Rhyxali and his son Iuz, god of evil.
  • Magic Pool: This horseshoe-shaped pool heals you for a moment, then begins draining your hit points. Non-evil creatures must make a saving throw to exit the pool.
The Whispering Library: I'm not sure if this is in one of the towers or what. This place is lit by ghostly floating candles and it is full of tomes that literally groan with secrets. There are four agents of Vecna that return books to the shelves.

Important tomes stand open on stone pedestals in an enclosed central hall, but its entrance is guarded by four frog-like hezrous and a horrid molydeus.

If you whisper a secret into the stacks, you get a secret in return. You can end up trapped in this library if you do this.

The Throne Room: Graz'zt's throne room is loaded with items and NPCs:
  • Dancers: Dozens of lithe humanoid slaves caper and dance.
  • The Amber Choir: Succubi entombed in amber are in agony, singing alluring songs.
  • Dimensional Globe: This crystal sphere prevents the use of teleportation. 
  • Elemental Pools: These pools are normal water. Graz'zt can infuse them with elemental power causing them to do acid/cold/fire/poison damage.
  • The Ruby Stairs: When Graz'zt stands on these stairs, he crits on a 19-20.
  • Statue: A statue of Graz’zt with offerings at its feet. 
  • The Altar of Obedience: Graz'zt's allies do extra damage when they are near this.
  • Throne: An ornate throne studded with gems that allows Graz'zt to be undetectable by any means.
  • Guards: Two marilith guards, Unhath and Reluhantis.
  • Verin: A demon lord in his own right, he is a vain, pure white humanoid with no hair. He is Graz'zt's chief diplomat.

Forgotten Realms Wikia: Zelatar
Details on Verin, "The Voice of Graz'zt"


Timothy S. Brannan said...

Very cool. I have been wanting to add Graz'zt to a game now for sometime. This is a great reference and source of inspiration!

Sean said...

Timothy Brannan: Thanks! I am getting ready to do a guide to Graz'zt to kind of complete that whole corner of the D&D-verse.

Aaron "Quickleaf" said...

This is an extraordinary investigation into Graz'zt! So much hard work and connecting the pieces. Really helping with my campaign prep. Thank you, Sean!

By any chance, do you now the name of the 47th layer Voorz'zt's smaller river ( "Athieflow" or "Mhieflow" ? ) and lake ( "Lake Albir" or "Lake Mbir" ? ) ?

Thinking I can make that lake the molten iron one in which the ferroliths were cast/created, but can't make out its name on that color map from, I believe, 4e's Demonomicon.

Blue said...

I’ve read most of your articles on here. They’re incredible fonts of information and inspiration! Thanks for your hard work! This has me pumped!

I had a drow wizard/warlock PC who made a foolish pact with Graz’zt, and spent a long time trying to get out of it (with Eilistraee’s help!) while under the demon lord’s thumb. This level 10-16 mini-campaign ended with a battle against an aspect of Graz’zt in a dangerous pleasurehouse in Waterdeep, and he was defeated and sent back into the Abyss. I hope one day to bring this character back (now a full Bladesinger, thanks to Eilistraee) for an epic-level assault on Graz’zt in Azzagrat... One can dream!

Anonymous said...

Great content !