Some of the most exciting D&D adventures I’ve ever played included fights with gods and demigods.
Can you kill a god in D&D?
You can kill a god in D&D. You can fight, defeat, and kill gods and demigods. To kill a god in D&D, you must use magic spells, magical weapons, and monsters. You can also kill a god by eliminating belief in the god, getting help from other gods, or becoming a god or demigod.
In this article, I’ll answer everything you need to know about killing gods in D&D.
Can You Fight Gods in D&D?
You can fight gods in D&D if your DM permits fighting gods. In older editions of Dungeons and Dragons, some gods came with stat blocks.
In newer editions of Dungeons and Dragons, there are no common rules for fighting gods.
Most gods in these new editions do not come with stats (with the exception of certain gods in certain settings, such as Lolth, Auril, and Tiamat).
The gods of D&D are mighty beings.
Battling with a god as a mortal player is a losing battle in most cases. Many gods are virtually indestructible, but you can still fight one and win.
It helps if you find a way to increase your power or weaken theirs.
For instance, you can become a demigod or use a spell or ritual to give you a fighting chance.
You can also fight the avatar of the god on the material plane—usually, a great monster that is easier to beat in comparison to directly battling the lesser or greater god.
A player has increased leverage if they obtain higher levels or divine status.
Can You Defeat Gods in D&D?
You can defeat gods in D&D.
Most of the time, if you “defeat” a god, it means killing the avatar of a greater god or trapping a lesser god in a place where they cannot leave.
Therefore, defeating a god in D&D does not necessarily mean a god is dead.
Those that do not perish are imprisoned forever or banished back to their home plane.
In other words, if your DM permits it and you succeed at fighting a god, that god is likely weakened or imprisoned.
Can You Kill a God In D&D?
With a few exceptions, there is no rank, stats, or direct rules for fighting gods in the official Dungeons and Dragons guidebooks.
Therefore, there is no “official” way to kill a god.
However, if your DM allows it, you can kill demi-gods, quasi-gods, vestiges, titans, lesser gods, and greater gods.
As you might imagine, it is usually easier to kill some gods than others.
It depends on a few factors, like
- How powerful the god is (lesser or greater god). Some gods are vulnerable, while others are basically omnipotent.
- The weapons you possess also count, particularly a legendary weapon that wields immense power.
- Rituals, spells, and other artifacts may help you win.
- The rules for the campaign. The dungeon master (DM) can veer from canon and create ways of killing certain gods in his or her setting.
- The D&D setup also matters. There are more “official” opportunities for killing gods in the third edition of D&D than you will find in the 5th edition.
If your campaign follows canon, the setting also affects your ability to kill a god.
Killing a god on the material plane only destroys their avatar, but they remain alive on their home plane.
Still, it’s a good strategy if you want to vanquish them temporarily to complete a quest.
The bottom line is that you can kill D&D gods.
But, it will be a difficult, epic battle. Keep in mind that gods don’t always “die” completely. They move to the realm of the Forgotten, absorbed into the pantheon or consumed by another god.
That means a god you kill in D&D may come back at a later time to seek revenge.
Here is a good video about how to kill a god in D&D:
Who Can Kill a God in D&D?
Anyone with the right weapon, magic, artifact, and strategy can kill a god.
If players overpower the deity, it does not matter how the stronger one wins. Mortal players can achieve this feat by wielding powerful artifacts, weapons, or spells.
Gods also kill each other depending on their particular pantheon. For instance, in the Greek pantheon, Zeus kills Kronos and overthrows the Titans.
Certain monsters can also help gods in D&D.
You might try to control a horde of dragons, tarrasques, krakens, demon lords, or other monstrous creatures.
Can a Tarrasque Kill a God in D&D?
Theoretically, a tarrasque could kill a god but probably would get defeated based on their low intelligence.
Most gods are supreme beings with incredible intelligence.
If you compare the stat blocks of gods in earlier D&D editions with that of a tarrasque, you’ll notice that:
- Both entities are gargantuan (equal size)
- Both entities inflict major damage
- Gods are much more intelligent
Since tarrasques are “unaligned” (meaning they can be good or evil), if player characters somehow gain control of an entire army of them, they might be able to kill a god in D&D.
Note: While there is only one “official” tarrasque, nothing stops a DM from allowing the possibility for more than one in their own worlds.
Can a Demon Lord Kill a God in Dungeons and Dragons?
No, a demon lord cannot kill a god in Dungeons and Dragons.
Gods in D&D are simply more powerful, ethereal beings. Based on the stats we know of deities and demon lords, there is no comparison.
Here is a concrete example:
- Demagorgon, a demon lord, has a challenge rating (CR) of 26.
- Tiamat, a god, has a challenge rating of 30.
How to Kill a God in D&D
Killing a god is never straightforward, and it probably shouldn’t be easy.
That would make for a dull quest and an unsatisfying win.
Regardless of your chosen method, the point is to weaken or reduce the god’s power. It makes them vulnerable enough to destroy.
Here are some ways to kill a god on D&D:
- Belief killing
- Rituals or spells
- Win a game against them
- Get help from a rival god
- God-killing items and weapons
One of the easiest ways to kill a god is to take out its followers.
In D&D, gods gain and keep power by amassing a large following of worshipers. Thus, if a god loses its worshippers, they become weaker.
Here are some tips to achieve this:
- Convince followers that the deity does not exist. You could argue against what a god represents. Alternatively, provide evidence that refutes their existence.
- Use a magic spell to erase the memory of the god’s existence in the minds of its worshipers.
- Destroy temples and artifacts related to the god.
- Fake the weakness or loss of power of a god (with magic or other D&D tomfoolery).
Use Rituals and Spells to Overpower the God
You can either use this to make yourself stronger or weaken the god temporarily. Or both.
For example, you could use spells to weaken or imprison a god.
If the DM allows for it, a wish spell could severely damage or even kill a god, although the wish will probably be perverted into something horrific for the players.
Other D&D spells you might use when fighting against a god:
- Mass heal (your party or army)
- Dispel evil
- Charm monsters
- Conjure Hezrou or another demon
- Power word kill
- Eldritch blast
- Simulacrum (make copies of creatures—to create an army)
What’s the most powerful spell to cast against a god in D&D?
Other than a wish (or miracle) spell, I’d go with Karsus’s Avatar. This dangerous spell essentially makes you a god.
That said, the spell is incredibly difficult to perform and may very well backfire.
Win a Game Against Them
A clever way to kill a god is to trick them into wagering their lives or freedom in a game of chance. The downside is that you have to put your life on the line as well.
The god will likely be overconfident, on account of being a god, and could mess up.
Here are a few possible ways to play a game against a god:
- Make a strategic bet that the god would logically accept.
- Get the help of infamously manipulative and tricky creatures (pixies, solars, Sibriex, Titivilus, Zuggtmoy, etc).
- Make the bet public and announce it to as many of the god’s followers as possible.
- Make sure you think you can win the bet (or have a backup plan if the bet is meant to simply weaken or imprison the god).
- If the god backs out of the bet, they forfeit their life. If you back out, you die.
- Winning requires skill and precision.
- If you know your opponent’s moves ahead of time (again, with magic), then you increase your odds of winning.
- Your DM may require that the bet is about something personal to the god or their followers.
That being said, a god is unlikely to accept a bet they think they will lose. They might cheat or back out of the bet.
Get Help from a Rival God
It makes sense that a god can kill another god.
The best-case scenario is that another deity wants to voluntarily help you. Multiple deities are even better.
The hardest part is going to be to convince the deities to join your mission.
You may need to do favors for your ally gods, help grow their followers, retrieve artifacts, or do other tasks.
You may even need to make serious sacrifices, even the life of one of the players.
God Killing Items in D&D
There is no specific item to kill a god, except the Jathiman Dagger, and it is stuck in the heart of a dead god.
Of course, your DM could also invent a new god-killing weapon.
It depends on the rules of your campaign and the game’s setting. The DM determines all these.
If possible, try to find powerful artifacts that can injure and weaken a god. Magic spells, rituals, and traps also work.
Godsbane is one of the artifacts in D&D lore that is handy for mortal players.
Cyric used the sword to kill Bhaal while he was still a mortal. Although Cyric destroyed the sword, the DM can create a quest to reforge it.
What Happens When You Kill a God in D&D?
Again, it depends, because there are greater and lesser gods.
Killing a deity that influences the fundamental elements can destroy reality.
If you use belief killing, the consequences are more gradual, and the universe will likely adjust. Belief killing will progressively reduce their power.
For instance, a weakened Auril would mean a world with mild or no winters due to belief in death. It could also mean that the world would eventually become a winter wasteland as winters get out of control.
There are often unforeseen and far-ranging consequences.
Killing a god also affects beings who draw power from them, such as sorcerers and clerics.
It renders them powerless (or less powerful), which may affect some players and NPCs in your campaign.
Alternatively, a player could gain divinity status equal to the god and replace them. The player would absorb the god’s powers and preserve the cosmic balance.
Yes, in some games, players can become gods in D&D.
Before killing a god, deeply consider their role and the consequences of their removal.
Final Thoughts: Can You Kill a God in D&D
My biggest suggestion about fighting and killing gods in D&D is to make it very difficult, if not impossible. The bigger the challenge, the more satisfying the victory.
If you’re looking to write a D&D campaign or one-shot, check out the resources on my About Me page.
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