Last Updated on May 1, 2023
Who Is Graz’zt?
Graz’zt is one of the 10 major demon princes in the lore of the Forgotten Realms. Known as The Dark Prince, he rules over pleasure, decadence, and self-indulgence. While he certainly isn’t considered to be a god, he’s definitely strongly associated with hedonism in the Forgotten Realms of D&D 5e.
- The Dark Prince
- The Dark Man
- The Shadow King
- The Prince of Pleasure
- The Lord of Forbidden Pleasures
On top of his most notable dominion, Graz’zt is also the patron of corrupt politicians and rulers. It’s probably no coincidence that a being focused on narcissism dabbles in politics.
We do have to remember, though, that Graz’zt is not an actual god. The power levels of beings within the Forgotten Realms can sometimes get a bit confusing, but demon princes are often viewed as less powerful than even demigods.
Of course, demon princes (the rank belonging to Graz’zt) are the strongest and most powerful of the demon lords. Graz’zt shares this title with other well-known entities such as Baphomet, Demogorgon, and Orcus. Interestingly though, he has nowhere near the depth of lore that these other beings tend to receive.
Describing Graz’zt as an incubus would probably do a good job of outlining what kind of character this demon is. First off, he is male presenting and often appears as a tall (around 9 feet) muscular humanoid. His skin ranges from a deep purple to a polished obsidian, and his eyes glow a sinister green.
Graz’zt also has all the demonic fixings we know and love. Horns, clawed hands, occasionally cloven hooves, and a generally evil appearance accompany features that could only be described as seductive.
As far as personality goes, you’ve probably already guessed what makes him tick. Like many fell creatures that take on more humanoid forms, Graz’zt relies on cunning trickery and seduction to achieve his goals.
History of Graz’zt in 5e
Many non-deities are worshipped on the Material Plane, and Graz’zt is no exception. Since Graz’zt’s “domain” is focused on eroticism and debauchery, he is one of the main sources of tieflings and cambions. On top of that, many monstrous or evil entities seek to follow the “teachings” of the Prince of Pleasure.
From a meta-perspective, Graz’zt exists as a representation of hedonism, narcissism, and greed wrapped up in one big evil demon prince. He’s a large aspect of what it means to be evil, but he doesn’t necessarily have any concepts that make him wholly unique from other evil entities.
Most of the stories that exist about Graz’zt have something to do with his debaucherous nature. Graz’zt goes to the Material Plane and gets busy with some sorcerer or witch, and then sometime down the line, his heir tries to usurp the throne.
One of the most exciting examples of this is a story that’s yet to come to fruition, which is something you might decide to employ at your table. According to D&D lore, the witch Iggwilv (who you may better know as Tasha from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything) trapped Graz’zt on the Material Plane to gain information about the Abyss.
Eventually, she succumbed to his charming influence, and the two produced a child by the name of Iuz. What came of that child? Well, that’s a story yet to be told, and his thirst for power might be the makings for a really intriguing adventure with all sorts of ties to the Abyss, the Feywild, Baba Yaga, and more.
Graz’zt has also gotten into many power struggles with other demon lords like Yeenoghu, Orcus, and Demogorgon, names that are probably familiar to anyone who’s looked at the Out of the Abyss campaign. Like any demon, he wants more power and is willing to do whatever it takes to get it.
Graz’zt is a demon lord, which makes him a significant figure in the Forgotten Realms and the lore of many D&D campaigns. Interestingly though, he doesn’t have a wealth of lore that is specific to him. This might be offputting to some, but to others, it’s an opportunity to create new stories centered on a near-godly being whose entire focus is debauchery and seduction.
We hope the information we’ve provided is enough to get you started, but if you’re looking to really flesh this character out, try looking at some of our other articles on demon lords and finding pieces of their lore that you can use to flesh Graz’zt out.
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As a kid, I was often told to get my head out of the clouds and to stop living in a fantasy world. That never really jived with me, so I decided to make a living out of games, stories, and all sorts of fantastical works. Now, as an adult, I aspire to remind people that sometimes a little bit of fantasy is all you need when life gets to be too much.