Celestials that call the Astral Plane home, but predominately dwell on the Material Plane, asura are immortal vagabonds. Often, asura find themselves drawn to mortal societies, as they are dependent on inhabiting mortal bodies.
An asura is a spiritual entity that has no solid body. Often times, they are regarded as disembodied spirits and treated much the same as undead abominations or certain kinds of fiends. While an asura is in its spirit form it is incorporeal and nearly undetectable, even by magic. Whenever an asura is in its spirit form, it will seek to retreat to the Astral Plane until it can locate a suitable host body.
Possessors of the Dead. An asura can’t possess a living creature. Whether through lack of ability or some long held code, an asura can only possess a dead body, and it will be selective about what it picks, unless no option is available. Most commonly, an asura will possess a stillborn infant in the womb of a humanoid. In this way, an asura grows up with mortal parents and is disguised among mortals to develop skills and connections to serve it during its time on the Material Plane. An asura can possess any corpse, provided rot hasn’t set in, but any injuries or ailments the corpse sustained are still present, which may cause the body to die again.
Asura most commonly inhabit the bodies of humans, elves, and related races as they find these bodies most serviceable for their purpose, but can inhabit the body of any humanoid. Dwarven bodies are generally avoided since asura can’t consume alcohol.
Driving Purpose. Asura are celestials with a mission, the particulars of which depend on the individual asura. Many serve as emissaries between divine authorities and mortals, while others take the task of protecting mortals from threats greater than most can handle. Asura are fearless combatants on the battlefield and the debate forum. When an asura intervenes on the behalf of mortals, it attempts to keep a low profile as mortals can be unpredictable in their response to the revelation of an asura.
When an asura possesses a host, it gains access to the memories of that host. When an asura leaves its host, it also loses most of its memories during the time it was within the host. An asura only permanently remembers its purpose and the skills and knowledge connected to that purpose. When an asura is forced to change bodies, it can generally resume its goals without missing a beat, but at times where its purpose has become unclear it can drift through its new life without recollection of what it is until its purpose has been reawakened.
Fundamentally Eternal. An asura matures like a member of the race of its host body, but ages much slower. Asura host bodies never reach physical middle age always keeping the veneer or youth. Unless slain, an asura never dies from aging and is immune to magical or supernatural aging. When an asura’s possessed body is killed, the asura exits the corpse and assumes its spirit form. In such an event, an asura on a mission may attempt to inhabit another corpse or linger in the hopes its host body can be restored; otherwise it will be forced to flee to the Astral Plane to probe the Material Plane to find a new body. If an asura is slain in its spirit form, it is forever slain.
Creature of Spirit. An asura in spirit form can’t be polymorphed against its will. It also doesn’t need air, food, water, or sleep.
Asura, Spirit Form
Medium Celestial (Spirit), Any
Armor Class 15
Hit Points 90 (20d8)
Speed fly 120 ft. (hover)
Saving Throws Wis +11, Cha +9
Damage Resistances cold, fire, radiant
Damage Immunities acid, bludgeoning, lightning, necrotic, piercing, poison, slashing, thunder
Condition Immunities blinded, deafened, frightened, grappled, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, stunned, unconscious
Senses blindsense 300 ft., passive Perception 16
Languages can understand any language it knows but can’t speak
Challenge 3 (700) Proficiency Bonus +5
Incorporeal Existence. The asura can move through objects and surfaces as if they were difficult terrain. An asura can’t pass through wood, lead, or rotten organic material.
Intangible. Attack rolls made against the asura, except those that target the mind or soul, are made with disadvantage. The asura makes saving throws against damaging effects, except those targeting the mind or soul, with advantage.
Astral Probe (psionic). While on the Astral Plane, the asura can peer into the Material Plane at will using a sensor like clairvoyance.
Body Dependent. When the asura doesn’t possess a body it is unable to manifest psionic powers or cast spells.
Translocate (psionic). Enter the Astral Plane from any connected plane of existence or enter a connected plane from the Astral Plane.
Possess (psionic). The asura’s possession save DC is 17 (Charisma based). It is a Controller that can possess a dead humanoid within 10 feet of it. When the asura possesses a target, its body assumes a spiritual form and is subsumed by its host. The host must be reasonably intact and can’t be decayed. When a corpse is possessed, it regains 1 hit point. As long as the asura possesses the host, the original soul connected to the body can’t be raised without providing it a new body.