Appearance and personality
Kelek has a clean-shaven head with a full, white beard and dark eyes. He stands 5 feet 11 inches tall, and weighs 156 pounds. He typically dresses in loose robes with an armlet hanging from his right arm, or in a trimmer, darker outfit with a cape, bracers bearing skull symbols, a belt, knee protection, and boots. He wields a staff, wears a ring, and also carries a dagger and wand on his person.
Kelek is chaotic in alignment and evil by temperament. His goals are power and wealth, and he uses his magic towards those ends.
Kelek is exceptionally strong and intelligent, but lacking in charisma.
As a wizard, he is capable of casting spells of up to 4th level. He knows the spells charm monsters, charm person, ESP, fireball, fly, haste, knock, magic missile, mirror image, read magic, shield, sleep, and web.
Kelek was once friends with Ringlerun, but Ringlerun and his friends now oppose Kelek and his allies. For his part, Kelek seeks his former friend's destruction, as Ringlerun stands in the way of his goals.
Ringlerun's former student Skylla is Kelek's partner, something he gloats about; however, Kelek plans to destroy her once he becomes High Wizard of his magic school. Skylla and her friend Warduke similarly plan to betray Kelek once all good fighters have been defeated.
The cleric Zargash is an advisor to Kelek, and aids him against Ringlerun, but ultimately wishes to rule himself. The thief Fox Fingers is a potential ally of Kelek against Ringlerun, but once Ringlerun was destroyed, Fox Fingers would destroy Kelek's allies and then Kelek himself.
A long time ago, Kelek and Ringlerun were adventuring partners. They discovered the Heartstone, which brought Kelek's hidden flaws to the surface, making Kelek power-hungry and evil. The two became enemies. Kelek sought to become the High Wizard of his magic school; he took on Skylla as his partner, and Zargash as his advisor.
Reception and influence
Kelek appeared in an episode of the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, "Valley of the Unicorns". He is depicted as a reluctant underling to Venger, the main villain of the series, but seeks to steal the power of teleportation from unicorns so that he may become Venger's master. The heroes of the series defeat Kelek by alerting Venger to Kelek's plans, resulting in a duel between the two that Kelek loses.
Kelek also appeared in the Marvel Books storybooks The Forest of Enchantment (1983), where he aided the evil plans of Warduke, and The Treasure of Time (1983), where he sought to steal the titular treasure for himself. Kelek also appeared in the Kid Stuff book and recording Attack of the Assassins (1984), where - at the bidding of Warduke - he hired the assassin Zarak to slay Strongheart.
Artist Richard Whitters released sketches of Kelek on Twitter in 2018, prompting designer Jeremy Crawford to express how much he liked the character. Crawford noted that he based a NPC in one of his campaigns on Kelek.
- XL1 Quest for the Heartstone (1984), p.17.
- AC1 The Shady Dragon Inn (1983), p.28.
- AC1 The Shady Dragon Inn (1983), p.26.
- AC1 The Shady Dragon Inn (1983), p.27.
- XL1 Quest for the Heartstone (1984), p.2-3.
- AC1 The Shady Dragon Inn (Basic) (Dungeon Masters Guild). 2016-01-05. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
- Dungeons & Dragons, "Valley of the Unicorns" (1983).
- The Forest Enchantment (1983).
- The Treasure of Time (1983).
- Attack of the Assassins (1984).
- Warduke, Kelek... (Sage Advice D&D). 2018-03-11. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- D&D Kelek SS T-Shirt (Black) (Death Saves). Retrieved 2020-10-10.