The Greater Demons are quickly identified by the separation of their essences from their aspects: while for Lesser and Middle Demons, their aspect are core to their existence, either (in the case of Lesser Demons) with their essence tightly bound to their aspect, or (for Middle Demons), their essences tightly coupled across their entire Legion, Greater Demons are more identified by their essence than their aspect.  While a Lesser Demon will quickly perish if its body is destroyed and Middle Demons can only exist without their bodies so long as they are supported by their Legion, Greater Demons are subject to no such restriction; a Greater Demon can go for thousands if not millions of years without ever existing in any physical form, without any harm coming to them.

In fact, most Greater Demons will have any number of aspects manifest at any given time.  Each of these aspects will have their own mind and body, largely operating independently from each other, though they, at their core, are all the same being.  They aren't precisely telepathic, especially outside of Hell, but they have a sixth sense related to each other, with some ability to detect their other aspects' emotional states.  They all recognize, in a deep, profound way, they are the same being, and will instinctively act for the good of that overall being as opposed to their own well-being.

Greater Demons often (but not always) rule over one or more of the six hundred sixty six Layers of The Abyss.  Their titles are largely dependent on how many and which of the Layers they have dominance over.  In some cases, they represent actual aspects of control a Demon attains with sufficient dominance, in other cases, they are purely symbols of status.

Arch-Demons

Greater Demons who can make a legitimate claim to any title of rule within Hell are generally referred to as Arch-Demons.  In general, these demons hold command over some part of Hell, usually but not always within The Abyss.  Generally, their primary title refers to the amount of command they hold over The Abyss, in terms of the number of Layers they rule.  In addition, there are numerous titles either self-imposed or directly cursed upon them by The Demogorgon.

Regency Titles

Regency Titles are established as Greater Demons establish themselves in command of the Pits of The Abyss.  Unlike Lordship Titles, which consider a Demon's entire power, Regency Titles only consider how much they command within a specific Pit.

At the lowest level, Demons who rule over Layers within a Pit, but not enough to effectively exert control over the Pit as a whole, are known as Proprietors of the Pit (for example, Proprietor of Blight).

Once a Demon manages to control enough of a Pit to influence its rule, they are termed a Baron of the Pit (for example, Baron of Treachery).  There is no fixed number for this, as it varies based on the overall power of the Demon and their relationship with the ruler of the Pit, if there is one, though in general, a Demon needs to rule somewhere around 7 Layers to be established as a Baron.  With less than 5 Layers, it would be almost impossible to establish any control, even under the best of situations, and any Demon ruling 9 or more Layers almost certainly can claim the title of Baron.

When a Demon commands more than half of the Layers within a Pit, they become the Prince of that Pit.  This amounts to command of no less than 38 Layers to become Prince of a Pit, and it is fairly difficult to reach this point, but once a Prince gains control over a Pit, it becomes easier for them to hold it, due to the way the Infernal Title of Devil is based on Prince titles.  That being said, Princes are routinely overthrown, though most Princes managed to hold their rule for at least a few million years before other Demons build up enough power to wage a concerted attack on a Prince.

If a Demon establishes itself as a Prince over two of the three Pits in a Chasm and rules over at least half the Layers within the Chasm (111 layers), they become the Arch-Prince of that Chasm.  It is rare that Demons reach the power to become Arch-Prince.

If a Demon establishes itself as a Prince over more than half of the Layers in all of The Abyss as well as Arch-Prince over two of the three Chasms, it becomes the High Prince of The Abyss.  This has happened once; like the High Lord position, Glabrezu is the only Demon to have been High Prince of The Abyss.

Hellish Titles and Aspects

The vast majority of Demons are confined to The Abyss, and cannot aspect the Abaddon or Infernum.  Those who can form a specific Aspect which exists only within either Abaddon or The Abyss.  While physically these aspects are generally identical to the Demon's normal Aspect, they are fundementally different in how they are constructed: these Aspects are substantially more powerful, representing the Demon's true nature more than most Aspects. 

As most Common Demons are unable to form Aspects, it is generally viewed as impossiible for most Common Demons to attain Hellish Aspects.  Fiends are the singular exception to this: They can form Aspects, thus can technically become Devils or hold other Hellish Aspects, though this is uncommon.

Superior Devils

Once an Greater Demon establishes itself as a Prince of a Pit of The Abyss, the title Superior Devil is bestowed, until such a time as the Demon looses its Prince title.  The title of Superior Devil does not connect to any particular evil aspect (thus it is not Superior Devil of Torment), but rather simply grants those Demons who have established a rule over a Pit a title within Infernum.  The Superior Devils also hold titles within Agony as Governor of the Circle (Governor of Slaughter), though the Demons don't generally use these titles in referring to themselves.  Superior Devils have access to both Abaddon and Infernum.

Inferior Devils

Princes can opt to bring one or more of the Barons within their Pits to The Demogorgon to be granted the title of Inferior Devil, a title which references the Superior Devil they are supported by (for example, Inferior Devil of Odontaspis).  They hold the title only so long as their Superior Devil maintains their title.  Otherwise, they have all of the same rights a Superior Devil would have, which mainly include access to the upper region of Hell and the ability to actually have an audience with The Demogorgon themselves.  Inferior Devils have access to Abaddon but lack access to Infernum.

Governor

There are (in general) nine Governor of Hell, these Devils corresponding to the Princes of The Pits of The Abyss.  Each Governor rules over a single Circle of Agony, taking possession of souls condemned to that Circle.  While the Prince of the corresponding Pit of The Abyss is generally the Governor of a Circle of Agony, the Prince, in fact, can name any Greater Demon as an Inferior Devil answering to them and grant them the title of Governor of Agony in their name.

Cursed TItles

There are a number of titles personally granted by The Demogorgon, mainly around specific services to them and to Hell in general.  These "Cursed" titles are granted at their will and can neither be requested nor refused: if The Demogorgon elects to grant a demon with one of these titles, they have little choice but to accept it.

Primordial Demons

The title "Primordial Demon" is given to any Demon who was never a mortal.  While, over all of the ranks of demons, most were once mortal, the Greater Demons are mostly Primordial Demons.  Demons who are not Primordial are generally referred to as Immigrant or Empowered Demons.

Primeval Demons

Greater Demons who fought in the Great War of Hell in the defeat of the devils and were awarded one of the 666 Layers of The Abyss at that time are termed the Primeval Demons, all of which are Primordial as well.  Generally a demon taking the title of Primeval Demon won't also use the term Primordial Demon.

Profane Demons

Demons take on the term "Profane" if they have "committed a profanity against nature."  Most commonly, this means they commanded an Apocalypse, either as the Master of Destruction (which would generally be a Demon Lord) or Supreme Hound of Death (usually an Unholy Beast).

The Arch-Demons

God-Emperor of Demons

  • The Demogorgon, Lord Captains of Evil, Eternal God-Emperor of Demons, King of Hell, Potentate of The Abyss, Arch-Devil, Harbinger of The Apocalypse, Champion of Sin, Lord High Despoiler

Demon Overlords

The title of Demon Overlord is granted to any Demon holding command over at least 74 Layers of The Abyss, enough that if it were all in one Pit, it would account for the entirety of that Pit's Layers.

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Demon Lords

Demon Lords hold at least 38 Layers of The Abyss under their command, which is the minimum number to hold command over a single Pit.  Thus, all Demon Princes are also Demon Lords.

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Demon Underlords

Demon Underlords hold at least 4 Layers, but less than 38 Layers.  These are demons who have begun to establish their power, but yet to fully establish themselves as the most powerful of demons.

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Demon Wardens

Wardens only hold a small number of Layers of The Abyss under their rule, generally less than three, and thus have minimal command over Hell, as a whole.

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Cursed Wardens

Demons who hold no Layers under their command generally are considered non-ruling demons.  However, those who hold a Cursed title still hold command, though it is over Infernum or Abbadon rather than The Abyss.  In terms of their demonic title, these are referred to as Cursed Wardens.  Note that while these demons' "Cursed" titles are technically no greater than Demon Lords or Wardens who hold "Cursed" titles, in practice, these are the most powerful of the Cursed demons: their work directly with and exclusively for The Demogorgon.  Thus, in the end, these are likely actually the most powerful demons in existence, though their true power is somewhat unknown to all but a small handful of demons.

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Non-Ruling Greater Demons

Greater Demons who do not hold command over any part of Hell are generally classified into one of two main categories: Fiends, who are part of the battle for command of Hell and are presumed to be looking for ways to gain some command for themselves, and Unholy Beasts, who have, for the most part, stepped out of the constant war for power and instead only strive for the advance of evil.

Fiends

Fiends are Greater Demons without any rule who have not stepped aside from the constant struggles for command of Hell and are generally seen as scheming to attain (or regain) rule over some aspect of Hell.  These creatures generally, but not always, maintain more or less humanoid forms and most of them, at some point in their existence, have been Arch-Demons who lost their rule through some act.  Because they lack a Layer of their own, they often have no safe place to secure their essence, making them particularly vulnerable to attacks upon their essence, unless they overcome this weakness.  To secure their essence, Fiends generally take one of two approaches: Securing it within The Abyss, or securing it on the mortal realm.

Fiends who want to secure their essence in The Abyss need to make a deal with an Arch-Demon for their security.  Such deals often come with a high cost, leaving the Fiend, though technically not the property of the Arch-Demon, heavily beholden to them for their safety.  Roughly one third of the Fiends take this approach.  More commonly, Fiends will secure their essences in the mortal realm.  While this is more risky, since it runs the risk of a mortal destroying the amulet holding the Essence, destroying the Fiend entirely, it leaves the Fiend free of being under the command of any Arch-Demon.  In fact, with their essence stored in the mortal realm, these Fiends cannot be truly killed in Hell, and only the destruction of their Amulet can result in their ultimate destruction.  

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Unholy Beasts

The other ranking of Greater Demons are the Unholy Beasts.  While the Fiends generally retain more or less humanoid forms, the Unholy Beasts eschew such forms for truly monstrous shapes, but this is only a superficial difference.  Unholy Beasts have willingly stepped out of the constant wars between the Greater Demons over rule of Hell, instead simply wishing to exist as a demon, outside the combat.  While they certainly hunger for personal power, their thirst for power is more focused on building their own strength rather than the strength of some area of The Abyss.  The ultimate goal of the Unholy Beasts isn't, in general, rule over The Abyss, but rather Knighthood (though this isn't true for all Beasts, as some eventually become Arch-Demons).  That being said, many of the Unholy Beasts have hundreds if not thousands of Hell Hounds who answer to their command, untied to any particular Layer of The Abyss.

Once an Unholy Beast is Knighted by The Demogorgon, its essence moves from The Abyss into Infernum, under the direct protection of The Demogorgon, thus the Knighted Unholy Beasts are as close to truly immortal as any demon can get.  They belong to no demon, other than The Demogorgon, which assert their ownership of all demons, and are generally not beholden to other demons, though some elect to serve closely with a particular Arch-Demon.

Knighted Unholy Beasts are among the most rare of demons and often among the most powerful.  Only three Unholy Beasts have been Knighted, and while those three demons are not part of the power struggle within The Abyss, they are often thought of as among the most powerful of demons.

In many cases, Unholy Beasts were once Master Hell Hounds who grew increasingly powerful until their essence reached a point it could exist without the trappings of a physical body.  As Hell Hounds, they were generally isolated from the struggles for command of Hell and they persist in this isolation from this aspect of being a demon even as they became Greater Demons.  

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Created by aeto on 2016/06/10 22:33
    
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