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The 5 Best Backgrounds for Yuan-Ti in D&D 5e

The 5 Best Backgrounds for Yuan-Ti in D&D 5e

Yuan-Ti, cunning and mysterious, their selection of background is paramount in navigating a world filled with treachery and ambition.

Prepare to slither through shadows, manipulate ancient secrets, and embrace the serpentine power as we unveil the optimal backgrounds for your Yuan-Ti in D&D 5e.

What Are Backgrounds in D&D 5e?

Backgrounds are more than simple stat boosts in Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition. They reveal where your character came from, why you became an adventurer, and your place in the world.

Before choosing your Background, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What was I before I became an adventurer?
  • Why did I stop doing what my Background explains and become an adventurer?
  • Where did I get the money to buy my starting equipment?
  • Where did I learn the skills used in my class?
  • What’s different about me compared to others with the same Background?

Best Backgrounds for Yuan-Ti

5. Haunted One

Skill Proficiencies – Choose two of Survival, Religion, Investigation, or Arcana

Tool Proficiencies – None

Languages – Choose two languages, one of which being an exotic language (Undercommon, Sylvan, Primordial, Infernal, Draconic, Deep Speech, Celestial, or Abyssal)

Equipment – A set of common clothes, a monster hunter’s pack, one trinket of special significance (you may choose one or roll for one on the Gothic Trinkets table), and 1SP.

Why the Haunted One?

Shaped by a Harrowing Event, Haunted One Yuan-Ti have experienced some of the most horrific atrocities known to any living creature, labeled cultists and hunted by many religious zealots who abore their ritualistic practices.

Their Heart of Darkness fills your eyes with unimaginable horror, noticed by those who speak to you, understanding that you are no stranger to darkness.

Commoners might fear you, but they will also extend a helping hand, at times even fighting alongside you if you were to find yourself standing alone against an enemy.

4. Courtier

Skill Proficiencies – Persuasion, Insight

Tool Proficiencies – None

Languages – Choose two

Equipment – Set of fine clothes and a pouch with 5GP.

Why the Courtier?

Courtiers have the Court Functionary feature, granting you knowledge of bureaucracies and access to records of governments and noble courts. You know who to ask for favors.

Yuan-Ti are exotic creatures that dabble in prophecies and rituals, which can lead to kingdoms using them for advice, allowing the Yuan-Ti to influence courts as he pleases.

3. Faceless

Skill Proficiencies – Intimidation, Deception

Tool Proficiencies – Disguise kit

Languages – Choose one

Equipment – A costume, a disguise kit, and a pouch with 10GP.

Why the Faceless?

Faceless characters have the Dual Personalities feature, where you have a persona that most of the world knows you by, even your fellow adventurers.

Everything about you is different than your true self, and once you wear your disguise, all similarities of your true self are hidden. Removing your disguise makes you unidentifiable as your disguise.

This means you can change your appearance between your personalities as you wish, one serving as your camouflage and the other to hide.

Note: If someone realizes the connection between your true self and your persona, your deception could lose its effectiveness.

Yuan-Ti are proud of their race, but some, especially Yuan-Ti Purebloods, understand the importance of keeping their true race a secret from those who wish to destroy them.

They will even hide their true identity from their fellow party members if they have to.

2. Sage

Skill Proficiencies – History, Arcana

Tool Proficiencies – None

Languages – Two you choose

Equipment – A set of common clothes, a letter from a dead colleague posing a question you haven’t been able to answer, a bottle of ink, a small knife, a quill, and a pouch with 10GP.

Why the Sage?

Sages have the Researcher feature, allowing them to effortlessly recall information and lore.

If they do not know the information, they will know where to find it, such as in a university, scriptorium, or some other place of knowledge.

However, some knowledge is extremely difficult to obtain and can take a long time to unlock or force you to perform questionable actions.

Yuan-Ti have a vast knowledge of ritualistic practices, being closely tied to the magic that transformed them and using these rituals to further their magical knowledge.

1. Acolyte

Skill Proficiencies – Religion, Insight

Tool Proficiencies – None

Languages – Choose two

Equipment – One holy symbol (gift to you when you entered the priesthood), a set of common clothes, a prayer book or prayer wheel, 5 sticks of incense, vestments, and a pouch with 15GP.

Why the Acolyte?

Acolytes receive the Shelter of the Faithful feature, granting you access to resources of temples and sanctuaries sharing your faith.

This allows you to receive free healing, food, and stay, though you’ll have to compensate them for any materials used in spells.

Yuan-Ti are well versed in rituals and often worship gods similar to those of Humans, some even paying homage to the gods that turned their flesh into scales.

Final Thoughts

Whether being exposed to something truly horrific as a Haunted One or manipulating society as a Courtier, players have a diverse array of choices to shape their Yuan-Ti characters’ identities.

These backgrounds not only provide mechanical benefits but also serve to create immersive roleplaying experiences, enriching the narrative tapestry of a player’s campaigns.