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Critical Role Wiki
Critical Role Wiki

Bane, the Strife Emperor is the evil deity of war and conquest. His followers accept his call to conflict, seeking lesser people to break and subjugate. Warmongering nations and many goblinoid tribes worship him as they conquer the world. The Strife Emperor twists all living things to his iron will, even forcing nature itself to bow to his whims.[3] Bane is also known as the creator of the Curse of Strife.[4]


A dark reflection of the honorable warrior, the Strife Emperor is often depicted as a brutish ogre-like man clad in jagged black armor. Heads dangle from his belt and unblinking, piercing yellow eyes peer through the shadow that obscures his helmeted face.[3] His followers usually depict him as belonging to their own race, out of a sense of superiority.[5]


One pirate who struck a pact with Bane described the Strife Emperor as a patron of those who like to "take what they want."[6]


Bane is highly praised by the Iron Authority, a hobgoblin empire in the Beynsfal Plateaus of southern Tal'Dorei. Bane's 30-foot-tall helmet, lost during his final battle in the Calamity, is now the central palace of Tz'Arrm, the capital of the empire. The rest of Bane's shattered armor helps to bolster the Authority's war machine.[7]

A organized sect of the Ravagers, led by the half-elf/half-dragonborn Grud the Great, worships Bane. They plan to march on the village in the Turst Fields.[8]


In the lands of the Kryn Dynasty, some hobgoblins and bugbears still worship Bane in a cult called the Lords of Strife.[9]

Commandments of the Strife Emperor[]

Commandments of the Strife Emperor

  • Fear is your ally. Conquer your fear, and inspire it in your foes.

  • Disorder and rebellion are to be punished severely.

  • To kill is life’s greatest pleasure, and perfecting the art of slaughter is life’s greatest pursuit.

Known worshipers[]


Bane - Cristina Anaya

Fan art of Bane, by Cristina Anaya.[art 4]

During the Age of Arcanum, Bane twisted much of the dranassar race into goblinkin and used them in his attempt to conquer Exandria.[11] This "Curse of Strife" that leads goblinoids to evil has been passed through the generations to the 9th century PD, though it can be broken by magic or extraordinary circumstances.[12]

During the Calamity, Bane filled his armies with such corrupted creatures rather than recruit demons.[5] In one of the last battles of the Calamity, Bane and his goblinoid legions battled Melora and her Free Children on the Beynsfal Plateaus of the Rifenmist Peninsula, where Bane was defeated and his armor was scattered across the region. The site was reduced to ash, and plants wouldn't grow there ever again.[13]

Sometime between 488 and 513 PD, Neminar Drassig made an infernal pact with Bane, and the Strife Emperor mutated and fueled Neminar's armies beyond human limits.[14] This pact carried through the bloodline to Neminar's younger brother, Trist Drassig.[15]

Around 743 PD, during a stormy battle, Urlu Novos struck some sort of dark deal[16] with the Strife Emperor after discovering his enemies were allying with each other.[17] He was struck in the forehead by a bolt and fell onto the deck, smiling.[18] After that, he and his ship became a ghostly apparition in the Shattered Teeth, seeking the treasures that once belonged to him.[19]

During the apogee solstice of 843 PD, when he sensed that Predathos might be freed soon, Bane was presumably concerned and sent one of his followers, Vezoden Amerai, to help his patron's cause. She traveled to Ruidus with a team, and became an ally of the Volition there.[20]


Beynsfal Plateau rev 2

The Beynsfal Plateau, site of the legendary battle

Bane's greatest enemy is Melora, the Wildmother, the goddess who defeated him at the Rifenmist Peninsula during the Calamity. The Strife Emperor grew his armies by corrupting noble creatures into monsters and destroying the wilds to fuel his terrible engines of conflict. This enraged the Wildmother, and the two deities clashed many times during the war before his defeat at Beynsfal Plateau.[3]

Appearances and mentions[]


  • Outside of Critical Role canon, Bane shares his name with an individual that ascended to godhood in the Forgotten Realms, being part of a divine triad (the Dead Three) with Myrkul and Bhaal. In 4th Edition, however, it was clarified that the two gods known as "Bane" are different figures, with the Strife Emperor being a god from his very origin, and having a dark brother-like position in relation to Kord, the more honorable god of war.



  1. Symbol of Bane from Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn by Conceptopolis.
  2. Symbol of Bane from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting by Conceptopolis.
  3. Symbol of Bane from Explorer's Guide to Wildemount by Claudio Pozas. (source)
  4. Fan art of Bane, by Cristina Anaya (source). Used with permission.