Dungeons & Dragons creature
Type Monstrous humanoid
Source books
First appearance
Stats OGL stats
This article is about the race in the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game. For other uses, see Derro.

The derro are a fictional species of monstrous humanoids in the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. They were first devised for the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons First Edition Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth. Derro appear in both the Forgotten Realms and Greyhawk campaign settings.

Physical description[]

Derro appear to be degenerate dwarves, dwarflike humans, or some hybrid of the two. Their rough skin is white with bluish undertones and spotted with short tufts of coarse hair. Their hair is straight and tends to be tan or pale yellow. Their eyes are most disturbing, lacking visible pupils.


Derro are widespread and are likely to be found in small bands throughout the Underdark. Derro warrens exist in many drow and duergar cities, and independent derro strongholds lie in the deepest reaches of the Underdark. Derro scouts and marauders search the areas near and around their settlements for victims to enslave and torment.

The derro are a strange and sadistic race; furthermore, they are clever, stealthy, and murderously insane. It is very common for a derro to devote his or her self to some strange quest, such as collecting only certain types of gemstones for a magical device or slaying as many members of a particular race as possible. Other derro are assigned specific missions by powerful derro savants. These mission-driven derro might join a company of comrades to fulfill their irrational goals.


The two known gods of the derro are Diirinka and Diinkarazan.

Derro in various campaign settings[]

Derro in the Forgotten Realms[]

In the Forgotten Realms campaign setting, derro are the Delzoun, a dwarven clan who were the result of genetic breeding performed by mind flayers.

Derro in Greyhawk[]

In the World of Greyhawk setting, derro are thought to be the result of breeding a race of slaves from dwarven and human stock by the Suel Imperium.

Possible creative origins[]

Richard Sharpe Shaver's deros are the degenerate, sadistic descendants of a proto-race that live in vast cavern complexes below the Earth.


  • Cordell, Bruce R; Gwendolyn FM Kestrel; and Jeff Quick. Underdark (Wizards of the Coast, 2003).
  • Gygax, Gary. Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth (TSR, 1982).
    • Gygax, Gary. Monster Manual II (TSR, 1983).
    • Gygax, Gary. Sea of Death (New Infinities, 1987).
  • Miller, Steve. The Doomgrinder (TSR, 1998).
  • Stewart, Doug, ed. Monstrous Manual (TSR, 1994).

External links[]