Thri-kreen in DnD 5E explained

Dive into the hive mind of Thri-kreen 5E in DnD. Understand the insectoid beings of the vast deserts.

© Dice Cove

Originally introduced to the game in 1982, these chitinous nomads are commonly associated with the desert lands in the post-apocalyptic Athas and Shaar in the Forgotten Realms. However, they can be found all over the multiverse, and in this article, we’ll break down everything you need to know about thri-kreen in 5E.

Adaptive desert dwellers

Thri-kreen are a bipedal insectoid race that are often found in desert climates, traveling in nomadic hunting packs. They communicate amongst each other through a combination of mandible clacks and antennae waves, making the Thri-kreen language extremely difficult for other races to understand and near impossible to replicate. When communicating with other races, thri-kreen will rely on their inherent telepathic ability, allowing them to convey their thoughts easily.

Their anatomy also yields them a number of unique benefits, such as a tough armored carapace that can shift coloration to allow the thri-kreen to hide effectively, no matter their environment, and they do not need to sleep, able to remain conscious 24/7. Chief among these anatomical benefits is a set of smaller secondary arms, underneath their primary arms. These arms allow thri-kreen to fight in a way that no other race can, wielding an assortment of weapons simultaneously, making them a fearsome and hard-to-predict opponent on the battlefield.

You’ll never see them coming: Playing a thri-kreen

Playing a thri-kreen gives you the following traits:

Ability Scores – You can increase one ability score by 2 and a different score by 1; alternatively, you can increase three different ability scores by 1.

Size – Small or Medium, your choice.

Creature Type – Monstrosity

Speed – 30 ft.

Age – The typical life span of a player character in the D&D multiverse is about a century, assuming the character doesn’t meet a violent end on an adventure.

Darkvision – You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.

Chameleon Carapace – Your base AC is 13 + your Dexterity modifier while you aren’t wearing armor.

Additionally, you can use your action to give yourself advantage on Stealth checks in your current surroundings, as your carapace shifts color to match your environment.

Secondary Arms – Under your primary set of arms, you have two smaller secondary arms. You can use these arms to open or close a door/container, manipulate an object, pick up or set down a tiny object, or wield a weapon with the light property.

Sleepless – You don’t need to sleep. Although you can remain conscious throughout a long rest, you must still avoid strenuous activity to receive the benefits of that rest.

Thri-kreen Telepathy – Your physiology only allows you to speak Thri-kreen. Instead, you rely on telepathy to convey your thoughts to other races. You can communicate mentally with willing creatures within 120 ft. of you that you can see. The creature you communicate with doesn’t need to share a language with you but must know at least one language. This mental connection is broken if either of you is incapacitated, willingly ends it, or moves further than 120 ft. away.

Languages – You can speak, read, and write Common and one other language that you and your DM agree is appropriate for your character.

We hope you’ve enjoyed carrying all the groceries in one trip with the thri-kreen, as much as we have. Have you played a thri-kreen yet? Are you planning to? If you want to learn more about other race options, check out our races section, or if you want to understand the world’s greatest roleplaying game better, check out our how to play section. Good luck out there adventurers, and until next time, remember to wash your hands, all of them!

Expert Editor-in-Chief