Rune giant

From PathfinderWiki
Rune giant
Rune giants near Xin-Shalast.

Rune giants are rare giants closely linked to Thassilonian rune magic.1


Rune giants were created by the runelords of ancient Thassilon from fire giants. They were bred to command Thassilon's armies of giants and were therefore given the magical ability to control other giant species. This physiological alteration was sufficient to make them their own true-breeding race of giant.1


Rune giants are towering creatures, with nearly black skin etched with glowing runes. They stand approximately 40 feet tall and can weigh up to 25,000 pounds.2[citation needed] Their skin is warm to the touch, and a strange grinding and rumbling sound emits from them when they move. In combat, they wear elaborate armor and helms designed to reveal their rune-scribed flesh, and they wield enormous greatswords.1

The runes inscribed on their flesh are natural. They are faintly visible on the skin of newborn rune giants and, as the child reaches maturity, take on a fiery glow. The type of runes appear to be genetic, as those of a single family name bear similar runes. Crossbreeding with other families results in variation of the runes. Some claim that if one could gather all the different rune giants together the ancient power of Thassilon would be at their command.1

Habitat and ecology

Like most giants, rune giants have very long life-spans, on average up to 1,200 years.1

On Golarion

Rune giants are extraordinarily rare and are considered mythical, even by other giants. They can only be found in Thassilonian ruins lost to time, especially concentrated in the city of Xin-Shalast in Varisia and in the Lands of the Linnorm Kings.13


When working on the rune giants, the runelords discovered something enormously intriguing about them: hidden within the giants was a shared immortal essence, a core attribute that carried from generation to generation of giant. Each giant carried within it a timeless copy of primeval history. The runelords coveted this aspect, and exhausted great energies to harvest it. This work resulted in the creation of the Runewells, and the rune giants themselves became living avatars of the runelord's immortal ambition. The rune giants are somehow the living keys to unlocking and awakening the legendary seven immortal runelords.1


Paizo published articles about rune giants in Giants Revisited 40–46 and Spires of Xin-Shalast 86–87.

For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Greg A. Vaughan. “Bestiary” in Spires of Xin-Shalast, 86–87. Paizo Inc., 2008
  2. Paizo Inc., et al. “Monsters A to Z” in Bestiary 2, 130. Paizo Inc., 2010
  3. David Schwartz. “Giant Primer” in Battle of Bloodmarch Hill, 63. Paizo Inc., 2015