What Is the Far Realm? A Timeless Land of Writhing Flesh and Elder Evils – Posts

The upcoming journey Name of the Netherdeep guarantees to move adventurers to the Netherdeep, an odd realm that has been described as a cross between the ocean’s darkest depths and the Far Realm. Little else is thought in regards to the Netherdeep presently, however bits and items of data concerning the Far Realm will be present in Dungeons & Dragons’ numerous editions, and this esoteric, eldritch house is maybe probably the most nightmarish setting within the entirety of D&D.

A spot past the identified multiverse

Mind flayer artworkNeglect what you understand in regards to the numerous planes of existence in D&D. The Far Realm is past the planes themselves, and in accordance with the Dungeon Grasp’s Information, would possibly nicely be a separate universe present exterior of the D&D multiverse. Simply as we will’t precisely fathom what exists past our personal universe, the vast majority of denizens from D&D’s numerous worlds do not know of the Far Realm. Discovered mages or daring githyanki sailors of the Astral Sea may need an inkling of this unfathomable cosmic house, and even then, those that try too onerous to grasp it danger shattering the boundaries of their sanity.

Whereas data on the Far Realm in fifth version stays sparse, D&D’s third version Guide of the Planes delved into the unattainable geometry behind this extradimensional house. Briefly, each gravity and time are absent within the Far Realm, and as a substitute of the conventional guidelines of physics, the Far Realm consists of an infinite array of translucent layers that seemingly meld into one another. Inhabitants of the Far Realm can move from one layer to a different just by prepared it, and landmarks—encompassing every little thing from alien seascapes to forests of big floating tentacles—would possibly stretch throughout a number of layers.

Likelihood is, vacationers to the Far Realm shall be flummoxed by the place’s unusual geometry, solely comprehending bits and items of lifeforms and landmasses relying on which layer they stand on. It appears truthful to anticipate the Netherdeep to mix each the weird structure of the Far Realm with eerie thalassic vibes, significantly within the type of crushing pressures, big rifts, and the utter darkness that fills the deepest reaches of the ocean.

Monsters of the Far Realm

The Far Realm first originated within the 1996 module The Gates of Firestorm Peak, for D&D’s second version. There, adventurers realized of a portal that historic elves had as soon as opened to the Far Realm, releasing a number of lethal alien creatures. That portal has lengthy since been closed, however the monsters born from the murky goop exterior of the multiverse have over time discovered their manner into D&D’s numerous worlds.

When contemplating creatures both indigenous to the Far Realm or touched by its power, consider aberrations—together with D&D mainstays just like the beholder, illithid, and aboleth, in addition to lesser-known entities just like the neogi and the nothic. Third version D&D additionally featured the kaorti, an alien race who had as soon as been wizards of the Forgotten Realms however had been reworked into unnatural, desiccated humanoids by one of many Elder Evils, the best of Far Realm creatures.

The Elder Evils of the Far Realm

The Elder Evils are hinted at in Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes as “beings set other than what mortals take into account actuality,” in addition to the masters behind the sinister heralds of doom referred to as star spawns. Often incapable of leaving the Far Realm, the Elder Evils’ affect leaks out into the worlds of the Materials Aircraft, typically influencing the actions of power-hungry cultists. Examples of those horrific, primordial forces embrace Tharizdun—the chained destroyed god who created the Abyss—and Kyuss the Worm that Walks, a large supposedly composed of a mass of slithering maggots.

Followers of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos will discover the Elder Evils acquainted, since Lovecraft wrote of unfathomable titans that existed past the fringes of actuality, dwarfing all human conceptions of fine and evil. Name of the Netherdeep will doubtless characteristic gargantuan undersea aberrations much like the Elder Evils in its pages, and any Dungeon Grasp trying to get a head begin on portraying these immense beings would possibly do nicely to research Lovecraft’s writing or learn the sections on cosmic horror and worry and stress in Van Richten’s Information to Ravenloft.

Visiting the Far Realm

Far Realm artwork from Tasha's Cauldron of Everything

The Far Realm is unkind to creatures from the D&D multiverse. Tasha’s Cauldron of Every part features a rollable desk of environmental results for the Far Realm. A personality might out of the blue discover the bottom has become writhing flesh or that they are compelled to finish a ritual that may conjure a demise slaad.

“Rrakkma,” an introductory journey to Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes, features a punishing mechanic that exhibits how shortly the Far Realm can warp a personality’s thoughts:

“Every around the adventurers are within the Far Realm, they have to every make a profitable DC 15 Knowledge saving throw originally of every flip or endure the consequences of confusion that spherical. The chart has been modified from the one within the Participant’s Handbook to extra precisely mirror the consequences of the Far Realm.”

Confusion Habits




The creature makes use of all its motion to maneuver in a random route. To find out the route, roll a d8 and assign a route to every die face. The creature does not take an motion this flip.


The creature does not transfer or take actions this flip.


The creature makes use of its motion to make a melee assault towards a randomly decided creature inside its attain. If there is no such thing as a creature inside its attain, the creature does nothing this flip.

Adventures within the incomprehensible

Whereas the Far Realm may appear troublesome to understand, its nebulous nature additionally makes it a compelling sandbox for artistic Dungeon Masters who wish to make their gamers’ heads spin. Think about the next three hooks for adventures involving the Far Realm:

  1. The Far Realm’s most direct hyperlink to the characters is the Nice Previous One warlock patron. The explanations behind why this historic entity would possibly share its energy might be the stuff of a complete marketing campaign, significantly one starring warlocks who all serve the Nice Previous One. Maybe this elusive patron is a benevolent deity of the Far Realm, and is in reality grooming the characters to finally journey to its area to defeat the encroaching forces of the kaort!
  2. Earlier editions of D&D hinted that psionic energy originated within the Far Realm. This is a wonderful kernel to discover in an journey starring character subclasses just like the Psi Warrior fighter, the Aberrant Thoughts sorcerer, and the Soulknife rogue. Paint the characters as outcasts who’re feared for his or her psionic abilities, much like mutant heroes just like the X-Males. Then, dangle the potential for them studying the origins of their energy within the Far Realm. Maybe a bunch of githyanki—who additionally specialise in psionics—are be prepared to move the characters to the Far Realm, however provided that they first help them in an assault on a thoughts flayer outpost within the Astral Sea!
  3. If you wish to incorporate a smidgeon of the Far Realm into your recreation with out making it the main target of a complete marketing campaign, attempt crafting a single dungeon based mostly on this esoteric dimension. The characters would possibly stumble into this dungeon through a portal, or maybe whereas fidgeting with a cubic gate left behind in an aboleth’s treasure horde. Their quest to flee can simply take up a number of classes on the gaming desk. Reskin one of many ranges of Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage for a fast begin, changing the monsters with aberrations and setting the dungeon in a multi-layered tentacle forest of the Far Realm as a substitute of the hallways of Undermountain. Your gamers shall be none the wiser, since they’ll be too busy attempting to determine precisely the place they ended up!

Cosmic depths await you

Whereas the jury continues to be out on how a lot of the titular area of Name of the Netherdeep will resemble the Far Realm, there’s no time like the current to start out planning a dive into D&D’s most weird setting. Simply keep in mind to be humbled by the sheer insignificance of your house within the multiverse, for any who dare to research the Far Realm will shortly come face-to-face with cosmic truths not meant for humanoid minds!

Jeremy Blum (@PixelGrotto) is a journalist, gaming blogger, comedian ebook aficionado, and fan of all types of storytelling who rolled his first polyhedral cube whereas residing in Hong Kong in 2017. Since then, he is by no means regarded again and loves roleplaying video games for the prospect to inform the tales which were swirling in his head since childhood.

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