Last Updated on January 22, 2023
The Marut is a monster that finds its origins in the earliest editions of Dungeons and Dragons.
It has its own lore, its own purpose, and a huge role to play in the cosmology of Dungeons and Dragons.
Sadly, very little of that has been explored in Dungeons and Dragons 5e at this point.
Given that Wizards of the Coast is starting to reprint and reboot old material, we expect to see an update to the wonderful ecology of, not just the Marut, but all of The Inevitables.
Until Wizards puts down the espresso and kale chips long enough to publish something official (they are headquartered in Seattle, right?), we pretty much only have the Marut stat block in Mordenkaiden’s Tome of Foes to go by.
MToF describes The Marut as a large, bipedal creature that looks like a giant, golden mech suit. It has a single eye in its chest and no neck, like a bodybuilder who forgot leg day.
Under its single eye is a golden wheel with calculations and figures behind which it stores a physical representation of whichever contract it is currently serving, typically a golden tablet with the terms chiseled on it.
But what is it, really? That’s a bit of a weird description.
In this post, we will start with how the Marut is presented in Dungeons and Dragons 5e; give you some insight in how to fight, ally with, or use the Marut in your game; and then give some history on how and why the Marut operated so that you can place one in your game tonight if need be.
What Is a Marut in DnD 5e?
A Marut is a CR 25 Construct (Inevitable) that comes from the Plane of Mechanus to enforce contracts and laws across an inter-planar jurisdiction.
How Strong Is the Marut?
As a CR 25, the Marut is second in power only to The Tarrasque and several of the top Devil, Demon, and Dragon Lords.
This incredibly high Challenge Rating is due to several factors:
At the basic level, they have an impressive movement capability of 40 feet with a perfect fly speed of 30 feet.
They have an equally impressive Hit Die (32d10 + 256). Yes, you read that right: plus 256. This is due to the Marut’s insane Constitution score of 26.
It isn’t just their Constitution that is off the charts, either. They have a Strength of 28 and a Wisdom of 19. Yes, Wisdom. Not to mention a Charisma of 18. Now, that’s a sexy robot.
They have a wide variety of resistances and immunities as well as a formidable defense in their saving throws.
They can also choose to pass three saving throws they would have otherwise failed, so more than likely your magic will not work very well on this Construct.
All of this means they are not simply strong, mindless automatons that go ceaselessly to do their master’s bidding.
They are strong, intentional automatons that go ceaselessly to do their own bidding according to what they have in mind.
That’s even scarier.
The actions they can take are unique also. Their main attack always hits and always deals 60 force damage. There is no need to roll.
Their Area of Effect ability called Blazing Edict deals 45 Radiant damage, and you only get save vs. a stunned effect. You can not stop the damage without resistance.
It can also plane shift at will, and once per short rest, it can teleport anyone to the Plane of Mechanus for judgment.
This thing is like its own force of nature.
Marut Stat Block
Large Construct (Inevitable), Lawful Neutral
- Armor Class: 22 (natural armor)
- Hit Points: 432 (32d10 + 256)
- Speed: 40 ft., fly 30 ft. (hover)
- STR 28 (+9), DEX 12 (+1), CON 26 (+8), INT 19 (+4), WIS 15 (+2), CHA 18 (+4)
- Saving Throws: INT +12, WIS +10, CHA +12
- Skills: Insight +10, Intimidation +12, Perception +10
- Damage Resistances: Thunder; Bludgeoning, Piercing, and Slashing from Nonmagical Attacks
- Damage Immunities: Poison
- Condition Immunities: Charmed, Frightened, Paralyzed, Poisoned, Unconscious
- Senses: Darkvision 60 ft., Passive Perception 20
- Languages: All but rarely speaks
- Challenge: 25 (75,000 XP)
- Proficiency Bonus: +8
Immutable Form. The marut is immune to any spell or effect that would alter its form.
Innate Spellcasting. The marut’s innate spellcasting ability is Intelligence (spell save DC 20). The marut can innately cast the following spell, requiring no material components.
At will: Plane shift (self only)
Legendary Resistance (3/Day). If the marut fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead.
Magic Resistance. The marut has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.
Multiattack. The marut makes two slam attacks.
Unerring Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: automatic hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 60 force damage, and the target is pushed up to 5 feet away from the marut if it is Huge or smaller.
Blazing Edict (Recharge 5–6). Arcane energy emanates from the marut’s chest in a 60-foot cube. Every creature in that area takes 45 radiant damage. Each creature that takes any of this damage must succeed on a DC 20 Wisdom saving throw or be stunned until the end of the Marut’s next turn.
Justify. The marut targets up to two creatures it can see within 60 feet of it. Each target must succeed on a DC 20 Charisma saving throw or be teleported to a teleportation circle in the Hall of Concordance in Sigil. A target fails automatically if it is incapacitated. If either target is teleported in this way, the Marut teleports with it to the circle.
After teleporting in this way, the marut can’t use this action again until it finishes a short or long rest.
Mordenkaiden’s Tome of Foes, p173
Now, it’s time to go into the Marut in detail.
Where Do Maruts Come From?
The Plane of Mechanus is one of the Outer Planes in the canonical Dungeons and Dragons cosmology. It is a plane of law and order that manifests itself in a clockwork fashion.
This gearpunk aesthetic means that every entity that comes from Mechanus is fairly robotic and will more than likely be a construct.
Maruts were created on Mechanus by whatever gods or lords created the planes, which varies depending on which edition you are using.
In Dungeons and Dragons 5e, all we have at the time of this writing is that Primus, the leader of the Modrons, created the Inevitables to make contracts between inter planar entities enforceable.
There is mention of the Kolyrut, who seems to be the writer of those contracts.
At this point, we simply do not know where they all fit in Dungeons and Dragons 5e.
Maruts in Old-School Dungeons and Dragons, Part 1
In the early days, the Inevitables were said to be created by a higher order of Celestials that was more interested in Law than in Good.
Inevitables answered only to the overlords of the Plane of Mechanus and to their understanding of whichever universal law they were created to enforce.
Some Inevitables enforced the laws of time and space, others enforced the laws of contracts, and others enforced the laws of deification.
What Is Their Purpose?
In Dungeons and Dragons 5e, their stat block and descriptions say they exist to enforce contracts that were written by the Kolyrut, another Inevitable.
The idea here is that plane-traveling individuals can strike up a bargain and take it to the Kolyarut on the Plane of Mechanus. The Kolyrut will assess the contract and then see to its enforcement.
To make this threat of enforcement good, the Kolyrut sends the Marut to be its enforcer. The Marut is capable of killing any person involved in such a contract, ostensibly.
However, if the contract does not call for the death of one party, the Marut is also capable of teleporting the offending member of the contract to the Great Hall in Mechanus where they will have to face the Kolyarut and, potentially, Primus.
Maruts in Old-School Dungeons and Dragons, Part 2
Back in the day, the Marut was originally tasked with enforcing the immutable law of death.
The idea is that death is something that comes for all creatures and that everything must die to make room for new life.
Therefore, the Marut’s main target were liches. Unlike Vampires, who gained their unnaturally long life in exchange for very specific weaknesses that could still be fatal, a Lich would only die if the magic sustaining it were dispelled.
If a necromancer sought to become a lich, or even raised too many undead, they could become the target of a Marut.
On the other hand, if a powerful cleric went about resurrecting loads of creatures who had died natural deaths, they could also become the target of a Marut.
How Do Maruts Accomplish Their Goals?
As a Construct, the Marut does not need to eat, breathe, or sleep. As a contract-enforcement officer, the Marut may have several things it could be asked to do to fulfill the letter of a contract.
If the contract calls for the repossession of property, the death of a signee, or the removal of a trespasser, the Marut can more than likely resort to the violence of which it is very capable.
If the signee is to appear in court, nothing will stop it from simply walking up to the signee and teleporting them to Mechanus.
Given that the plane shift spell is not exact, the Marut will have to find the signee and fly to their location. This could take a while, but nothing will stop the Marut.
However, it still needs to find the signee, and so it will be able to use its high intelligence and wisdom to interrogate, observe, and track its target to anywhere on any plane.
You may be able to hide from a Marut… but not for long.
For DMs: One Way To Use a Marut in Each Tier
Maruts are very interesting creatures, and their varied stats make them useful for memorable stories at any tier of play.
You definitely don’t want the PCs to have to fight a Marut until Tier IV, but the threat of fighting one can certainly stimulate a plot into action!
At Tier I, if the players interact with a Marut, it should be in a non-combat scenario. Unless the PCs threaten the Marut, it should not feel the need to kill them.
Consider having the Marut ask the players to help it find a signee of its contract for a reward.
At Tier II, the players should still definitely not fight the Marut. However, have the PCs follow the Marut into a dungeon so that they may loot the destruction it leaves behind them.
So long as the PCs do not impede the Marut’s mission, they will not be harmed.
At Tier III, we can start talking about fighting the Marut. However, this would still likely result in the PCs’ death. So if the PCs fight the Marut, fashion the Marut’s mission to be fulfilled without the PCs’ demise.
For example, perhaps the Marut needs a particular item, and it somehow blames the PCs for keeping it from them.
Or perhaps the Marut’s mission calls for the destruction of a particular property that the PCs happen to be in.
Finally, we can now have the PCs fight the Marut. This is easy to manage so long as you can rope one or more of the PCs into an interplanar contract or make them protectors of someone who is on the run from a Marut.
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Rich is an avid D&D player and DM. He has been playing since the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st and 2nd editions. He has run campaigns of various editions with family and friends for over 20 years. Playing DnD 5th Edition in person at local game stores and online with VTT’s over the past 10 years has provided a consistent connection to how the game has grown. He strongly believes in understanding the source material, but catering the games to your individual players. Feel free to ask anything in the comments or drop him an email: [email protected].