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A mercane

The mercane are a species of planar merchants that deal in powerful magical items, advanced technology, and general magic. Their origins and history are opaque. All that is known is that they are highly enterprising merchants, reliable as far as coin is concerned. They are, contrary to their giant size, not combative individuals.

Mercane are Lawful Neutral.

Physical Appearance[]

Mercane are tall, lanky blue humanoids, about twice the size of a human on average, whose spidery fingers have an extra joint in them. They dress in robes, togas, and other loose-fitting clothes most commonly, often adorned with valuable or magical trinkets.


Mercane are fairly weak and timid, which is surprising given their size. They prefer to talk instead of fight, and will use diplomacy or bribery to avoid conflict. They frequently travel with bodyguards when in dangerous locations, hired from among the local adventuring populace.

Special Abilities[]

Mercane are consummate users of magical items, able to employ all sorts, regardless of the usual limitations on them.

Mercane can become invisible, and are capable of limited teleportation (as in dimension door), and they usually use these abilities to escape combat (leaving any bodyguards behind).


Mercane are merchants, first and foremost. They are solitary, and their history and biology is enigmatic at best. Generally, they only talk of the deal.

The items they deal with are often powerful, and expensive. They are capable of being found by those who wish to buy such items -- they rarely deal directly, and only then for particularly significant purchases. However, they do control vast networks of middlemen, petty merchants, and subordinates,

Publication History[]

Mercane were originally detailed for the Spelljammer setting in 2e, appearing first as "The Arcane" in TSR1049 AD&D Adventures in Space. There, they were noted as selling spelljamming equipment. They later appeared in the 2e Monstrous Manual, also as Arcane. In 3e, their name was changed to "mercane" (presumably to prevent confusion with arcane magic as wielded by wizards and sorcerers), making appearances in the 3e Manual of the Planes and Epic Level Handbook, as more general interplanar merchants. They have yet to make an official appearance in 4e, though the presence of the Astral Sea and "ships" that sail on it certainly provides a comfortable niche for them.