Additional background options are available to player characters in Out of the Abyss.

Substitute Features

A player can choose one of the following features to replace the feature normally granted by his or her character’s background.

Optional Feature: Deep Delver

You have a knack for making your way in the deep places of the world. You can recall the twists and turns of passageways and tunnels such that you can always retrace your steps underground. You’re also well acquainted with foraging and survival in the Underdark, and can determine when sources of food and water are safe to consume. You can always find sufficient food and water for yourself and up to five other people in the Underdark, as long as sustenance is available in the area.

Optional Feature: Underdark Experience

You are no casual visitor to the Underdark, but instead have spent considerable time there learning its ways. You are familiar with the various races, civilizations, and settlements of the Underdark, as well as its major routes for travel. If you fail an Intelligence check to recall some piece of Underdark lore, you know a source you can consult for the answer unless the DM rules that the lore is unknown.

Substitute Bonds

This table provides alternative bonds that characters can have instead of the bonds from their backgrounds. You may roll one randomly or select one that fits your character. In either case, it would be a good idea to consult with other players who have the same bonds to determine whether or not your characters share something in common.

Substitute Bonds
d10 Bond
1 You were once lost in the Underdark, and a group of kuo-toa helped you find your way out. You learned that there are kindly folk even among that otherwise mad race, and remain indebted to them for their aid.
2 You once had the opportunity to meet a circle of myconids—the mushroom folk of the Underdark. They offered you shelter and a chance to “meld” using their telepathic spores, and you have yearned ever since to repeat that experience.
3 One of your best friends in your youth was Morista Malkin, a hill dwarf and member of the Old Faith. Though you haven’t seen her in years, you heard she found her way to the reclaimed dwarf hold of Thunderstrike.
4 You once worked for Davra Jassur, a Scarlet Brotherhood “troubleshooter” recruiting promising new talent for the Brotherhood. She helped you get your start as an adventurer, and you owe her for that.
5 You have long had a curious recurring dream about visiting a vaulted stone library in the depths of the Underdark, and becoming lost in the endless lore it holds.
6 You studied with a deep gnome alchemist and miner named Kazook Pickshine, who saved your life once when a magical experiment went awry. Last you heard, his family controlled some of the largest mines in the deep gnome settlement of Crystalmine.
7 What little you know about the Underdark, you learned from living and fighting alongside the Feldrun clan of dwarves. You swore an honor debt to the clan before they joined the forces retaking Thunderstrike and established themselves there.
8 Years ago, a vicious noble named Ghazrim DuLoc was implicated in the death of someone you cared about. The crime was covered up, though, and DuLoc disappeared. Rumor has it the Scarlet Brotherhood aided his escape, but you’ve sworn to find him one day.
9 Years ago, you lost people you loved in a raid by creatures from the Underdark. They disappeared without a trace, either slain or taken into the depths, and you’ve always wondered whether they might still be alive and held as prisoners.
10 You know the dwarf hold of Thunderstrike well, having fought alongside the dwarves to help defend it. Prince Olinstaad Corond congratulated you on your valor, and you know the price the dwarves paid in blood to regain their home.


airwalkrr's Out of the Abyss airwalkrr