Demons are an array of unholy, magical entities that are foreign to the physical plane.
Their native plane of existence is usually the Pit - a depraved, nightmarish dimension adjacent to the Elemental Planes. The Pit Demons are divided into three circles. In ascending order of importance, these three levels are designated Tertius, Secundus and Primus, with the ruling Snake and Night Demons occupying the highest circle, Primus. Most Demons seem to hail from these groups in the Pit, however, there are also pseudo-Demons, such as the Earth Demon, which are not actual Demons, and are only referred to as such due to their magical and malevolent natures.
The range of Demons hitherto encountered is incredibly diverse - some of them are elemental, such as Fire Demons, while others are associated with various substances, facts and features of the physical world, such as Moon Demons, Rock Demons, and the like. There are also diverse means of controlling and combating Demons - some are vulnerable only to magical weapons and spells, some to Holy means of attack, while others are only susceptible to their own black magicks.
Being supernatural entities of great power, Demons are sometimes the object of religious worship, especially those occupying the higher ranks. This is especially true of the demigod Snake Demons, who in some cases are divinely revered by entire races. Most notably, the Caarth venerate Sith, while the Lizard Men pay homage to Myurr and Ishtra. However, while the Snake Demons are undoubtedly powerful and intelligent, they remain in thrall to their exiled master, Death. It is Death that insinuates his own designs and desires into their minds and the Demons, wittingly or not, act upon his will.
The origins of Demons are not entirely explained, however some inferences can be made based on the information available in Fighting Fantasy canon. Demons can manifest in many forms - the range of their physical shapes is limited only by what their powers will allow. However, they are known to choose physical forms that are consonant with their native forms and habitat found in the Pit. Why they possess these particular forms could possibly be explained.
It is said that Death, foremost of the Dark Gods, stole a portion of the magical soil that Throff had discovered, using it to fashion his own creatures after the Lawful Gods had created theirs. This might possibly explain the provenance of Demons and why much of them correspond to substances and elements already existing in the created world of Titan. Death may have acquired his inspiration for his creations from features of the world already formed by his divine peers. This is possibly further supported by the existence of demonic variants of animals, such as Demon Bats, Demon Steeds, and the like. Canon text also states that, during the first battle against the Dark Gods, the monstrosities among the ranks of Chaos bore grotesque parodies of other beings in a "cruel mockery of the creations of the lawful gods".
Another theory to explain the properties, though not the origins, of Demons is that the substance or element they correspond to is not just their original bodies, but is also the medium which they use to manifest themselves. Mirror Demons, for instance, apparently use mirrors to penetrate the barrier between the physical plane and their own, and will be expelled from the physical plane by destroying the mirrors from which they emerge. Ice Demons have been encountered in wintry conditions, Wood Demons have been found in forests, Demons of debased substances, such as muck, have also been found in environments rich in their own properties. So, possibly Demons avail of climates congenial to their particular substance or element to sustain corporeality in the physical world.
The text states specifically that the Snake Demons fought on the side of Chaos during the first battle. The outcome of this conflict was the defeat of their masters, the Dark Gods, who were ultimately banished to the Void, with the Snake Demons fleeing to the outer planes and settling in what became known as possibly the worst of all possible worlds - The Pit. The Snake Demons are described as demigods and as such probably have some power to create creatures, but whether or not any of the other demons actually owe their creation to the Snake Demons is unknown.
Demonic Order and SocietyEdit
There are seven levels to the Pit's hierarchy, but the actual Demons found in the Pit are divided into three groups. The other four groups are composed of undead and servants.
"Primus" is the smallest group - within it sit the three Snake Demons and four Night Demons. These seven are collectively known as the Demon Princes. The group immediately below the seven Princes is labelled "Secundus", and it is here the legions of the damned begin. Secundus consists of the greater Demons - the likes of Plague, Rust, Storm and Venom demons can be found on this tier. The level below Secundus is "Tertius", consisting of the lesser Demons. Among the denizens of this circle can be found the Nanka, Hell and Mirror Demons.
Below this are the levels of "Quartus" and "Quintus" - respectively composed of the greater and lesser undead. Thus ends the infernal legions, and begins the bottom two tiers - "Sextus", composed of brainless clones, who occupy a menial position as workers, and the lowest tier, "Septimus", in which the formless, unregarded Demonspawn languish.
Moreover, it is worth noting that a huge number of Demons have not been assigned any rank in Fighting Fantasy text. Indeed, there may well even be reason to doubt that all creatures referred to as "Demons" are in fact inhabitants of the Pit.
Codes and CustomsEdit
The demonic hierarchy is attended by a stringent code of etiquette. This strange code seems to concern itself with the proper gestures and greetings between those on differing levels of the hierarchy. It is considered a grievous insult to fail to observe these rules, and the Demon bearing the brunt of the insult is well within its rights to tear the offender to pieces. How this bizarre etiquette developed is unclear. Possibly the greater Demons decided to enforce it as a mark of their own superiority and to consolidate their power over their inferiors, but it could also be a matter of practicality - the code may establish some order among the creatures, thus restraining them from furiously slashing, burning and cursing each other to bits.
Although the demonic etiquette seems to remain constant, any equilibrium of power established among equals at the apex of the demonic hierarchy is quite fragile. The three Snake Demons and the four Night Demons all hold the highest title of "Demon Prince", though it is the Snake Demons who are the rulers, while the Night Demons act as their generals. None of the princes sit idle atop the Pit's social structure, but are rather continually squabbling and vying for power with each other. Currently it is said that Sith has the upper hand, and indeed she has the allegiance of two Night Demons - Relem and Vradna - but this has not diminished the ambitions of her rivals, who no doubt only covet their own ascendancy with renewed vigour. Their much-sought hegemony may come to pass, as Sith's own followers, the Caarth, seem to be losing ground to Ishtra and Myurr's Lizard Men, and Sith's lieutenants, Relem and Vradna, are increasingly warring between themselves rather than against the armies of her rivals.
The Feast and the Wild HuntEdit
The Pit bears witness to more demonic customs than a simple code of conduct. There are depraved, blood-letting banquets in which the Demon Princes and those lesser Demons who are in good graces with their masters congregate to feast upon the dead, dying and undead. Giblets, viscera and thousands of bodies in various states of death and distress are strewn across this abattoir as the Demons revel in their dark delights - ripping, chewing and in some cases chasing their dinner. Over-enthusiastic dinner guests may well dine on each other.
Amid this charnel spectacle can also be found several forms of what the Demons regard as entertainment. Torturers please their spectators, Demonspawn comically and grotesquely juggle limbs and bawdy ballads are sung. All of this general turpitude appeals to the guests, not least the Princes, who, as the festivities continue, will eventually find themselves knee deep in blood and slime, their senses gratified by the howls of the dying and the guttural noises of others engorging themselves on whatever has roused their appetite.
A second form of entertainment is the hunt, an excursion which conveys the Demon Princes and their servants to the earthly plane itself. These hunts take place nocturnally, in the middle of the Winter months. Acompanied by Hellhounds, capable of sniffing out living blood, the Princes and their minions ride out on undead steeds, seeking the vulnerable and the isolated from whom they claim souls to bolster their strength.
Laws Governing DemonsEdit
The Pit is a noisome, repulsive place to probably all but its inhabitants. The Demons, while apparently in their element in the Pit, can have difficulty manifesting themselves on other planes. Sometimes it can take days to fully manifest, and Snake Demons in particular require a magical gem to restrain the elemental forces that would, if left unchecked, forcefully expel the monster and return it to its own domain.
Perhaps because of these difficulties, the demonic forces of the Pit have been seen attempting to terraform Titan, twisting the land into a grim mirror image of their home. However, accomplishing this requires potent artefacts, such as the Death-Stone, which will taint its environs with the necessary Land-Blight to prepare the way for demonic conquest of the physical world.
Quite often demons can only be harmed by magical weapons and spells, but this is not always the case. Anything consecrated to the service of a Holy Power is usually anathema to them. However, they can sometimes also be vulnerable to their own dark magic and artefacts.
Elementals, especially Chaotic ones, are similar in principle to Demons. They occupy their own planes of existence (the elemental planes in fact abut the four corners of the demonic ones), they can be summoned and commanded, and they are considered magical. This similarity has led to chaotic elementals being referred to as "Demon" elementals.
- Demons do not actually need to eat.
- In the entire Sorcery! series, only one actual Demon is encountered.
- In literature, it is not uncommon to see an entity somehow bound in service to a Human, who commands the creature by virtue of possessing at item, possibly magical. This entity is usually some form of Demon. Similar instances are seen in Fighting Fantasy include the Demon of the Ring and Izkhao (who may or may not actually be a Demon)..
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.154/??
- ↑ Out of the Pit - p.70/??
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Dead of Night - p.17
- ↑ Out of the Pit - p.39/??
- ↑ Out of the Pit - p.194/??; Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.153/??
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.153/??
- ↑ The Fighting Fantasy 10th Anniversary Yearbook - 38
- ↑ The Fighting Fantasy 10th Anniversary Yearbook - 39
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.48/??, 49/??, 53/??
- ↑ Tower of Destruction - 210; Vault of the Vampire - 5
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.54-55/??
- ↑ Deathtrap Dungeon - 72; Night Dragon - 381
- ↑ Crypt of the Sorcerer - 365
- ↑ Demons of the Deep - 346
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.55/??
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.158/??
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.55/??
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.163/??
- ↑ Battleblade Warrior - 229
- ↑ Curse of the Mummy - 202
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.162/??
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.158/??, 163/??
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.159/??
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.160/??
- ↑ Tower of Destruction - 375
- ↑ Out of the Pit - p.282/??
- ↑ Dead of Night - 323
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.154/??
- ↑ Return to Firetop Mountain - 335
- ↑ Titan - The Fighting Fantasy World - p.156/??