It’s probably not an enormous shock to anyone to learn that tieflings are (along with the dragonborn) my favorite Dungeons and Dragons race. The fact that they got a big revamp in 4th ed, including promotion to a default player race, was… like, pretty much my D&D Dream Come True.

Also, their revised concept art looked freakin’ badass!

What I didn’t realize is that art–and the new look for tieflings in general–was designed by all-round baller William O’Connor. I probably should have noticed this, because O’Connor is one of my favorite monster-and-dragon concept artists of all time (seriously, his three Dracopedia books pretty much permanently live on my “writing inspiration” pile). So it’s totally awesome to read about the thought processes that went into his 4th ed redesigns.

Strictly speaking, Lain’s concept design pre-dates 4th ed, but I won’t deny there’s a lot of O’Connor’s tieflings in him. And ditto for Lee and the dragonborn, come to think of it (at least in the structure of the face). Go figure, I guess.