A bugbear is a massive humanoid distantly related to, but larger and stronger than, goblins and hobgoblins. Like many goblinoids, bugbears speak goblin. They are one of the only goblinoids to be covered in fur.
Bugbears resemble hairy, feral goblins standing seven feet tall. They take their name from their noses and claws, which are similar to those of bears. Their claws are not long and sharp enough to be used as weapons, so bugbears often armor and arm themselves with a variety of purloined gear. Most often, this gear is second-rate and in poor repair. Many bugbears are chaotic evil in alignment, favoring the rogue class.
Many scholars now believe that bugbears and goblins were both bred by the hobgoblins as slave races, with bugbears serving as elite soldiers.
Bugbears, like other goblinoids, have a reputation for being dim-witted and brutish. This claim is not unfounded and like their kin bugbears have easily provoked tempers and are prone to fitful rages. Few bugbears overcome this nature and their culture's brutal nature. Bugbear heroes, though rare, are heard of however, and if successful, can acquire significant renown. Often the motivation for this change of heart comes from the rewards earned from virtue, which in the long term are more pleasing than the short-lasting pleasures of evil.
Bugbears are often found in the company of other goblinoids, particularly goblins, since tribes made up mostly of hobgoblins and bugbears tend to be wiped out quickly by other races as a precaution. Some bugbears also operate independently, though tribes ruled by hobgoblins are better organized and less savage. This is in part because bugbears have little patience for diplomacy or negotiation, preferring violent solutions to conflicts unless obviously overpowered. In general, bugbears live a life based around survival and become rogues, though many also make excellent barbarians.
Bugbears have their own pantheon, led by Hruggek. Bugbears often decapitate their enemies as a way to honor Hruggek, who is said to do the same. Since the Spellplague the power of Hruggek has been diminished and the god now serves as an exarch of Bane, the god of tyranny. |}