Tiefling Hexblade

ZenBear

Villager
I'm trying to come up with a canonical lore-friendly backstory for a Devil Tongue Tiefling to have a cursed sword. Current excuse is a family heirloom, but being that Hexblades are explicitly tied to the Shadowfell it doesn't work as well for a character of Fiendish descent to have one. Maybe his ancestor is Orcus? What sort of alternatives have you seen in play or thought might be fun?
 

Perun

Mushroom
You can always reflavour it. In the campaign I'm currently playing in, we've got an aasimar celestial "hexblade", where all her powers were changed to similar, but more celestial-appropriate ones. Her 6th-level spectre ability brings a good-aligned spirit, and her necrotic damage is changed to radiant. It all works out nicely in the end, and no noticeable power disbalance has occured so far.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
In our game we had a human hexblade who was bullied and found a broken sword that he practiced with in private and it taught him out fight but also granted him powers, etc. Later when the human stood up to the other youths, he accidentally blasted one. Then the townsfolk were concerned and he left, not wanting to hurt anyone else but also anxious to discover and master his newfound powers. It was a pretty good backstory.
 

Dausuul

Legend
I've never seen anyone play a hexblade and actually use the Shadowfell flavor.
Yeah, I don't think I even noticed that bit. To me, the Hexblade patron was obviously intended as a fix for the blade pact warlock, and I treated it as such. My Hexblade's weapon was a meteor hammer (I used glaive stats with bludgeoning damage) with a powerful erinyes devil bound into it.
 

CydKnight

Explorer
We currently have a human hexblade warlock in our campaign. He was going to be executed in Hillsfar for smuggling and was brought to the Arena where he was sentenced to fight the current champion.

Facing almost certain death in the arena and having only 3 days to prepare, a "shadowy cloaked" figure came to him an had him swear allegiance to a Dancing Sword touched by Eilistraee in exchange for aid in his death battle. Another anonymous deal was also struck the day before where the condemned human could choose a "willing" partner from the pool of imprisoned Arena fighters but would not be made aware of this until entering the arena just before the match began. Those who run the arena did not believe there was any way that any prisoner would risk certain death at the hands of the invincible champion. However, merely hours before the death match, a 7'6", 335lb half orc barbarian with an IQ of 6 and a good heart to match his size just couldn't sit idly by and watch this puny human get pummeled by a Goliath who appeared to be at least twice his size. He gladly joined the fight and the two were able to defeat the champion thereby securing their freedom so long as they agreed never to set foot in Hillsfar ever again.

Did this particular Barbarian arrive in a nick of time by coincidence? If not, the who arranged it? No one is sure but the Warlock has been gaining powers as he levels that certainly appear to be tied to the Moon (so far) and has had a few visits in his dreams by a tall "dark dancer" with ankle length silver hair and whose features otherwise appear elvish, dancing in the silvery moonlight.
 

sim-h

Explorer
In our game we had a human hexblade who was bullied and found a broken sword that he practiced with in private and it taught him out fight but also granted him powers, etc. Later when the human stood up to the other youths, he accidentally blasted one. Then the townsfolk were concerned and he left, not wanting to hurt anyone else but also anxious to discover and master his newfound powers. It was a pretty good backstory.
My Hexblade player had a similar story (although he just got turned to stone in Tomb of Annihilation, sadly - see the recaps thread). He was a recruit in the Flaming Fist but a weakling who was bullied, so he made the Shadowfell pact in order to improve his martial prowess. He then murdered someone who bullied him and got thrown out of the Fist...

I liked it because he gave himself STR 8 - mechanically still a good choice since he could use CHA for combat. Amusing when he tried to do anything with STR however, it usually failed dismally.

Also - his patron ordered him to retrieve the soulmonger, so it was a good hook into ToA, unbeknownst to the other players of course.
 
We know that sometimes powerful devils fall out of favor and get exiled. Maybe one of them set up shop in an out-of-the-way plane like the Shadowfell. He (or she) might not want to call attention to him/herself by making fiendpact warlocks, so he invests some energy into the 'Fell and powers up a hexblade instead. I would guess that devils have a proprietary feeling towards tieflings, so being a tiefling's patron would feel appropriate to the devil. And if it turns out one of the devil's more successful rivals had plans for that tiefling that the 'Fell bound devil could thwart by getting a prior claim in, that is just icing of the cake....
 

Cap'n Kobold

Adventurer
I'm trying to come up with a canonical lore-friendly backstory for a Devil Tongue Tiefling to have a cursed sword. Current excuse is a family heirloom, but being that Hexblades are explicitly tied to the Shadowfell it doesn't work as well for a character of Fiendish descent to have one. Maybe his ancestor is Orcus? What sort of alternatives have you seen in play or thought might be fun?
One of their ancestors was of fiendish descent. However there are many more of the hexblades' ancestors that are of human descent.
And humans can get up to some pretty cool things as well.
 
I've been playing with a human Hexblade. Backstory is that he was from a family that secretly adopted worship of the Dark Kami Fu Leng. When Fu Leng was destroyed his clerics died out but now his warlocks work to bring him back. Our hero was orphaned when the family failed Fu Leng and fell into ruin. Now he's discovered his powers, and is adventuring to restore the family honor and to escape the life of poverty he was condemned to by his ancestors failure.
 

ZenBear

Villager
Thanks for the feedback! To clarify, this would be for a fanfic (or a book if I’m feeling ambitious), so I want as little homebrewery as possible. Adventurer League legal, as it were. I know different authors in WOTC treat the lore very differently, so I suppose I may have more leeway than I’m granting myself, but I prefer to err on the side of caution.

Of particular note, the antagonists of the story will be Sharrans, by and large, so there’s the possibility of taking the blade from the enemy, but the timeline of that light get tricky.
 

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