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Hernán Cortés, Conquistador

Hernan Cortes
  • Alias: Hernán Cortés had various titles and aliases during his life, including “Hernando Cortés,” “Marqués del Valle de Oaxaca,” and “Conquistador of Mexico.”
  • Gender: Male
  • Race: Human
  • Occupation: Conquistador, Explorer, Military Leader
  • Religion: Hernán Cortés was a devout Catholic.
  • Allies: Cortés had several allies during his conquest of Mexico, including soldiers and fellow conquistadors, such as Pedro de Alvarado and Bernal Díaz del Castillo. He also formed alliances with indigenous groups who opposed the Aztec Empire, most notably the Tlaxcalans.
  • Enemies: His primary enemies were the Aztec Empire, led by Emperor Moctezuma II, and various indigenous groups that resisted Spanish colonization.
  • Abode/Base of Operations: Cortés didn’t have a fixed abode during his campaigns in Mexico, but his base of operations shifted as he advanced through the region. He established temporary headquarters in places like Veracruz and Tenochtitlan (modern-day Mexico City).
  • Nationality: Spanish
  • Languages: Cortés primarily spoke Spanish, but he also relied on interpreters to communicate with indigenous peoples in Mexico who spoke Nahuatl and other native languages.
  • Alignment: Hernán Cortés’ alignment would likely be considered Lawful Neutral. He followed the orders and directives of the Spanish Crown while pursuing his own ambitions and objectives.
  • Affiliation(s): Cortés was affiliated with the Spanish Crown and its interests in the New World. He served under the authority of King Charles V of Spain.
  • Significant Others: Cortés had several relationships during his life, including a marriage to Catalina Suárez Marcaida, a Spanish woman. However, he also had relationships with indigenous women in Mexico, most notably La Malinche (Malintzin or Doña Marina), who served as his interpreter and advisor during the conquest of Mexico.

The ambitious conquistador Hernán Cortés sails from Spain to the Americas seeking fortune and glory. Though his early years remain mysterious, Cortés becomes a man of stature in the colonies. But he thirsts for more – to explore new lands and conquer indigenous empires.

Cortés assembles soldiers, allies and weapons. He leads his men on daring expeditions into the mainland interior, driven by rumors of powerful civilizations and untold riches. His curiosity and zeal fuel his conquering spirit.

With cunning plans and strategy, along with brute force, Cortés overpowers local tribes. He forges alliances when advantageous, or resorts to cruelty if needed. Cortés lets nothing obstruct his mission to claim new territory and subjects for the Spanish crown.

At times Cortés shows diplomacy, wishing to learn from indigenous leaders. But conquest and conversion remain his ultimate goals. Though greed partly motivates him, Cortés also seeks status and honor. He desires the glory of opening new worlds to Europe.

Back in Spain, Cortés is rewarded for expanding the empire. But in the Americas, he continues striving. Cortés searches for the next expedition, frontier or foe to defeat. His ambition and restless energy never cease.

Hernan Cortes1

Medium humanoid (human), lawful neutral

Armor Class 16 (breastplate) Hit Points 120 (16d8 + 48) Speed 30 ft.

16 (+3)18 (+4)16 (+3)14 (+2)12 (+1)16 (+3)

Skills History +6, Insight +4, Persuasion +7 Senses passive Perception 11 Languages Spanish, Nahuatl, Common

Challenge 10 (5,900 XP)


  • Multiattack. Hernán Cortés makes two rapier attacks.
  • Rapier. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 9 (1d8 + 4) piercing damage.
  • Arquebus Shot. Ranged Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, range 80/320 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d10 + 2) piercing damage. Special: Hernán Cortés can only make one arquebus shot per round.


  • Tactical Insight. When an ally within 30 feet of Hernán Cortés is targeted by an attack, he can use his reaction to grant that ally a +2 bonus to AC against the attack.

Legendary Actions Hernán Cortés can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. Hernán Cortés regains spent legendary actions at the start of his turn.

  • Move. Hernán Cortés moves up to half his speed without provoking opportunity attacks.
  • Rapier Attack. Hernán Cortés makes one rapier attack.
  • Inspire. Hernán Cortés can use his inspiring leadership to grant one ally within 30 feet an additional d6 to add to an attack roll or saving throw.

Lair Actions Hernán Cortés has a tactical advantage when he is fighting in an environment he is familiar with, such as an Aztec temple or a fortified Spanish encampment. When in such a location, he can use the following lair actions:

  • Command Reinforcements (Costs 2 Actions). Hernán Cortés can call for reinforcements. He summons 1d4 veteran Spanish soldiers to aid him in battle. These reinforcements act on his initiative and obey his orders.
  • Tactician’s Stratagem (Costs 3 Actions). Hernán Cortés formulates a brilliant battle plan. Until the end of his next turn, all attacks made by him and his allies within 60 feet of him gain advantage, and they have resistance to damage from spells.

Equipment Hernán Cortés is equipped with historically accurate gear:

  • Breastplate
  • Rapier
  • Arquebus
  • Explorer’s Pack
  • 20 gold coins

Magic Items Hernán Cortés carries a unique historical artifact:

  • Cortés’ Conquest Map. This map, drawn by Cortés himself, magically updates to display terrain, fortifications, and enemy locations. When consulted during travel or combat, it grants advantage on Intelligence (History) and (Survival) checks for navigation and tactics.

Roleplaying Notes Hernán Cortés is a shrewd and ambitious leader, always planning his next move carefully. He is determined to achieve glory and wealth for himself and Spain. He can be diplomatic when needed, using his knowledge of both Spanish and Nahuatl, and he’s not afraid to use cunning strategies to overcome challenges.

Background Hernán Cortés is a conquistador from Spain who led the expedition that resulted in the fall of the Aztec Empire. His actions and tactics in the New World had a profound impact on history.

Currently in the World

Hernán Cortés stands at an average height for a Spanish man of his era, around 5 feet 8 inches (1.73 meters). He has a strong and sturdy build, a testament to the rigors of his life as a conquistador. His skin is fair, and his dark brown hair, starting to show traces of gray, falls just past his shoulders. A well-groomed beard frames his square jaw, giving him a dignified appearance.

Cortés scuttling his own fleet off the coast of Veracruz in order to eliminate the possibility of retreat.

Currently, Cortés is dressed in the attire befitting a Spanish nobleman. He wears a black, high-collared doublet adorned with intricate gold embroidery, a symbol of his status as the Marqués del Valle de Oaxaca. Beneath the doublet, a crisp white linen shirt peeks out. His lower half is covered by dark, tailored breeches and black leather boots polished to a shine. Over his clothing, he dons a deep crimson cape, a sign of his allegiance to Spain.

Cortés is engaged in a serious discussion with his advisors, strategizing the next steps in his ambitious quest to conquer the Aztec Empire. They’re gathered in a dimly lit chamber within the makeshift Spanish quarters in Tenochtitlan, the magnificent Aztec capital. Maps and parchments are strewn across a large wooden table, illuminated by the flickering light of candles. The air is thick with tension and determination, mirroring Cortés’ unwavering focus.

His mood, as always, is a blend of determination and cunning. Hernán Cortés is a man driven by unrelenting ambition, and his conquest of Mexico is a testament to his fearless pursuit of glory and wealth. Although the path is fraught with danger, he remains resolute, confident that he will carve his name into the annals of history as the conqueror of a new world.

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