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Dragon fire x3 a day ? 
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Ok, this afternoon my girls & I sat and re-watched The Hobbit – good enough as movies, but it still annoys me what they added and took away from the book, but that is beside the point …

In the parts showing the power and destruction of Smaug & his raving of Dale and the Dwarf hold, I got to thinking (which we all know is dangerous)
Smaug used its fire way more often than just 3x a day …

Also, it is a normal trope of fantasy that a dragon comes in and burns down a town eating all the maids etc. With burning a town it is bound to take more than just 3 uses of the ole fire breath.

Soooo, how do you make dragons more representative of the fictional dragons instead of limited to 3 x attacks – without making the toooo powerful (but I do feel dragons SHOULD be one of those monsters that are POWERFUL and should be feared)

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:11 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Again, this was covered in a 1980's early 90's article in Dragon Mag. :) The article recommended dragon attacks going from claw claw bite to Claw claw bite, stomp wing slap, tail slam and then double at less than 25% of their hit points left as they went berserk. Mainly because dragons were wimps rather than the fear of deity inspiring engines of kingdom wide destruction legends held them to be.

To cover your breath weapon question, take the dragon's total HD and multiply by three. This becomes a dice pool the dragon can use for its breath weapon per day which it can only use with a minimum three round mandatory break between. So you have a 15 HD Red Dragon..it has a breath pool of 45 dice. You can use all of that in one attack or for nine 5 HD attacks or a 15 HD attack followed by six 5 HD attacks...etc. LOTS of flexibility and really ups the danger level when fighting a dragon. Which is why I slaughtered a eight person party of avg 7th level PCs with a 2HD red dragon. And I mean TPK in around half dozen rounds. (MAN I loved 2nd edition. (grin))

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:18 am
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Mogrl

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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
I don't limit it in number of times per day, I limit its frequency. I have them breathe every 2 to 5 rounds. IE 1d4+1 rnds. If the party is going to win, they usually have killed the dragon before it gets its third breathe. If they haven't, they have switched to avoiding the TPK tactics.

If I ever had to actually worry about a maximum number of times per day they could breathe, I would probably base it upon their CON score. Like 1/2 their CON. Since their CON is likely 20+, that would mean I would have at least 10 breathes to play with. Should be plenty to accomplish whatever the dragon needs to do.

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:33 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Frequency is the key. But not a predictable frequency. On rest, three uses, then the 4th and on takes 2d4 rounds to recharge. Now I also like to have those breath weapons needing "power"... so the beast must eat something to power up.. it would be laying round.. so in those off rounds instead of biting it gorges on coal lets say in the case of a red dragon... adds fun into the fight and the PCs can figure this out..

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 1:44 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Treebore wrote:
I don't limit it in number of times per day, I limit its frequency. I have them breathe every 2 to 5 rounds. IE 1d4+1 rnds. If the party is going to win, they usually have killed the dragon before it gets its third breathe. If they haven't, they have switched to avoiding the TPK tactics.

If I ever had to actually worry about a maximum number of times per day they could breathe, I would probably base it upon their CON score. Like 1/2 their CON. Since their CON is likely 20+, that would mean I would have at least 10 breathes to play with. Should be plenty to accomplish whatever the dragon needs to do.

Hmm, now you've got me thinking about how to make my dragons even more frightening. Let's see how this works out.

You guys well know that my dragons are absolutely brutal to begin with since I use a d20 as the dice type. What my house rules specify is that the dice are NOT rolled. Points per die are assigned based on age (lifted from AD&D), with an age 12 dragon having 20 points per die. This would mean the largest red dragon in my game would have 680 hit points. If I were to roll dice normally, that dragon would have an average of 390 hit points.

Now let's change up the breath weapon. Tree, you mention basing the maximum number of times per day at 1/2 CON, if you ever had to worry about it. Let's change that up to base the maximum number of times per day on 1/2 the hit dice. So at age 1 a red dragon could breathe 4 times per day. At age 12, that same dragon could breathe 17 times a day. At 1d10 per hit die, each time the breath weapon is used the average damage ranges from 44 points (age 1) to 187 points (age 12). To have the dragon be even more nasty, do what AD&D did, and have damage from the breath weapon be equal to the creature's hit points.

Think characters would be scrambling to escape at this point?

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:02 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Thanks for sharing , and I love how the ideas are building on each other to come up with something awful (emphasis on the aw being full and twistedly brutal)

I like the idea here, and it is all better than just a generic x3 a day ...

dragons with not only claw claw bite, but also tail swipe wing buffet & stomp

Then a dragon that can breath weapon once ever 1d4 + 1 rounds aprox 10x a day ( or a pool of dice =HD x3) - I'm bad with math on my feet so that would be a lot if ifish math if going that path -

Treebore wrote:

I don't limit it in number of times per day, I limit its frequency. I have them breathe every 2 to 5 rounds. IE 1d4+1 rnds. If the party is going to win, they usually have killed the dragon before it gets its third breathe. If they haven't, they have switched to avoiding the TPK tactics.

...


Rgr on the need to run if you haven't taken it out by the 3rd breath attack !!!!

Then to a 680 HP brute with a breath weapon usable aprox 17x a day that does aprox 187 points damage ... NOW HERE WE HAVE SMAUG !!! And the Hero's shook with fear and trepidatio. !

Now as I'm a player that may one day be one of those Heroes, a beast that can take nearly 700 points of damage, can breath fire nearly 20 times and do nearly 200 points in each breath, plus the above mentioned claw claw bite tail stomp wind buffet attacks, should be a very rare creature ... a monster from myth and legend often whispered of but seen by a very very few ...

Also, as I put on my favored devil's advocate hat, even those great and terrible beast have a weakness, a chink in the armor, a geis fated against them, a way for a quick eyed observant, clever (or well prepared) hero to defeat them ... so maybe that near 700 points is only for the fool that tried to fight it blow for blow, but for another that see the weakness , (or studied the ancient myth and put 2 & 2 & 2 together) , they only have to do say 1/3 of it and make a called shot or target that weakness .

So, to go with those fear inspiring numbers you (well we/the DM) needs to think of a unique weakness to go along with each dragon

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:17 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
I'm not following your math on that Trav. You would have to have 680/20 is 34...how does the 12 work into it?

Made me pull out my 2e MM and that has me thinking now. lol My players (if I ever get any again) are going to really hate me. (grin)

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:48 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
My house rule says, "All dragons have d20 hit dice rather than d12, though there are still only twelve age levels. Hit points per age level are shown on the table."

Here's the table.

Code:
DRAGON HP
Age     HP/Die
1         2
2         3
3         5
4         6
5         8
6         10
7         11
8         13
9         14
10        16
11        18
12        20


In answer to your question, 12 is the number of ages a dragon has, starting at Hatchling (age 1) and going all the way to Ancient (age 12). I kept the number of ages at 12 so I didn't have to expand the characteristics tables at the end of each dragon entry, and simply skipped some numbers when issuing hit points per die.

As to 2d Edition AD&D dragons, those are what the original D&D and AD&D dragons should have been like.

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:35 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Okay...that was what was throwing me off. The non-uniform progression of hp per HD per age. :)

Yeah...Dragons and Giants were really disappointing to me (and still are to an extent) when seeing game stats versus the metric tons worth of myths and legends I've read over the decades. (chuckle) To me they should have a relationship similar to the Dragon and Tiger of Asian lore. Especially when you run into adventures showing Giants having Dragons as pets or servants despite the awesome-sauce that are dragons.

I'm thinking strongly of taking some of your approach and the 2e stats and mixing well with a dash of my particular insanity for the True Dragons. (chuckle)

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:43 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Dragons and I have a long history in this game, dating all the way back to the beginning. No, I didn't push for them to be able to add their full amount of HD as an attack bonus, but did feel that they weren't fearsome enough. The problem is the random nature of die rolls. It's entirely possible - although it would get tossed out - to have an age 12 red dragon with only 34 hit points. Dragons should be one of the exceptions to the rule, in that their hit points should NOT be randomly generated.[1] That said, even with not randomly generating hit points, I believed they still weren't fearsome enough, thus the change in die type to d20.

The breath weapons per day issue never really came up, as sensible parties would back away and return later with an army. But now that we're discussing dragon breath weapons, I think I'm going to implement what I came up with here as well into my house rules. Now I just need to track down my writeups for Bahamut and Tiamat, both of which should be somewhere on this forum.

[1] Medium, large assassin vines, and yellow mold were the only exceptions in Monsters & Treasure for the longest time. With the 4th print, assassin vines of all sizes have their hit dice randomly generated, leaving yellow mold as the only creature in the game I'm aware of whose hit dice are not randomly generated.

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:42 pm
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Ulthal
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Lurker wrote:
Ok, this afternoon my girls & I sat and re-watched The Hobbit – good enough as movies, but it still annoys me what they added and took away from the book, but that is beside the point …
PJ deserves a groin stomp for what he did to The Hobbit. ;)
Lurker wrote:
In the parts showing the power and destruction of Smaug & his raving of Dale and the Dwarf hold, I got to thinking (which we all know is dangerous)Smaug used its fire way more often than just 3x a day …

Also, it is a normal trope of fantasy that a dragon comes in and burns down a town eating all the maids etc. With burning a town it is bound to take more than just 3 uses of the ole fire breath.

Soooo, how do you make dragons more representative of the fictional dragons instead of limited to 3 x attacks – without making the toooo powerful (but I do feel dragons SHOULD be one of those monsters that are POWERFUL and should be feared)
I like the idea of rolling a d6 each round after a breath weapons is used with a result of 5-6 indicating the breath weapon has replenished and is ready for use again. This could be modified for greater chances to replenish with the greater age categories if a DM/CK is so inclined...

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Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:57 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
If you were an intelligent dragon, what is the first illusionist (wizard) spell you would learn? Color change... yep, that green dragon is really blue... throw that one at them, particularly for those who prepare with protections vs breath weapon and the second spell is the breath weapon itself.. first breath, real, second and third are illusions, then when they all charge in after three, nail them..

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Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:02 pm
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Post OT: Chromatic and Platinum Dragons
This is an update of conversion work I did in 2006, on Dragonsfoot. They are based on the AD&D versions of the creatures, but the hit points were tripled. Since the C&C red dragon had slightly more than triple the hit dice of the AD&D variant tripling the hit points seemed fair. Updates to the writeups however focus on added special abilities and recalculating XP given the changes in the XP system.

In the instance of the special abilities, as each chromatic or metallic dragon was sired or reared by a chromatic or platinum dragon it made sense to give each of them all the special abilities of the chromatic or metallic dragons. Thus the chromatic dragon has all the spell-like abilities of all five chromatic dragons combined. The same thing applies to the platinum dragon, but in his case it's all the metallic dragons.

The XP values in the 2006 version of the writeups were very vague. They couldn't be calculated with any certainty because there simply were no rules on how to calculate the XP of a monster larger than 20HD. They ended up woefully undervalued compared to today.

Anyway, whomever reads this is free to do as they wish with it.

DRAGON, CHROMATIC
NO. ENCOUNTERED: 1
SIZE: 60'
HIT DICE: 48d12 (576HP)
MOVE: 25 ft., 75 ft. (fly)
ARMOR CLASS: 32
ATTACKS: 2 Claw (1d8), 5 Bite (2d12, 4d6, 2d6, 4d10, 2d8), Tail (1d10), Wing (1d10) {+12DB]
SPECIAL: Breath Weapon (x5), Icewalking, Spell-Like Abilities, Immunity (Acid, full), Immunity (Electricity, full), Immunity (Fire, full), Immunity (Cold, full), SR 10, Water Breathing
SAVES: M, P
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic Evil
TYPE: Dragon
TREASURE: 18x20
XP: 204,350+48 (231,998)

Tiamat was a dragon with stubby legs and five heads that could be any combination of head belonging to a chromatic dragon, the skin of each merged into three stripes - blue-green, gray and purple before they merged again into brown skin that covered her tail.

Arrogant, greedy, hateful, spiteful and vain, she never forgave any kind of slight and was focused in obtaining more power and wealth. She had an insatiable greed for treasures, but preferred that her followers brought it to her in the form of gifts instead of searching riches on her own. She disdained mortals, regarding them as mere disposable tools in her schemes. When needed, she was charming and fey, but her self-serving and reptilian personality betrayed her sooner or later.

Tiamat enjoyed the company of male dragons, and maintained an Adult (age 6) male consort from each of the chromatic dragon races.

DRAGON MAGIC: Chromatic Dragons receive two wizard spells for each of the first five spell levels.

COMBAT: Unless wholly assured of victory, a chromatic dragon prefers to attack through underlings, spells and as a last resort melee, in that order. When facing multiple foes a chromatic dragon concentrates on the weaker opponents, first seeking to dominate, then, if that fails, destroying them.

it will gate itself out of danger if 144 points of damage are done to its body.

EXTRA HEADS: A chromatic dragon has five heads. Each head may act independently of the others and may bite, use a breath weapon, use spell-like abilities, or use dragon magic. Each head can take 48 hit points of damage before being lost. These hit points are independent from the total hit points the creature has. Any lost heads will be restored the following morning.

ICEWALKING: This ability works like the spider climb spell, but the surfaces the chromatic dragon climbs must be icy. It is always in effect.

WATER BREATHING: A chromatic dragon can breathe underwater indefinitely and can freely use its breath weapons, spells, and other abilities while submerged.

SPELL-LIKE ABILITIES: Chromatic dragons possess the spell-like abilities of black, blue, green, red, and white dragons. Chromatic dragons may use gate at will, but will only use this ability if needing to escape from danger.

BREATH WEAPON: The chromatic dragon has the breath weapons of black, blue, green, red, and white dragons. Each breath weapon can be used once per day.

Code:
Specials:
I: Create/Destroy Water, Dragon Magic, Frightful Presence, Icewalking, Sound Imitation, Spell-like Abilities, Water Breathing
II: 5+ Attacks/Round, Bite, Breath Weapon, Dragon Magic, Immunity (Acid), Immunity (Electricity), Immunity (Fire), Immunity (Cold), Immunity (Sleep, Paralysis), Spell-like Abilities, Spell Resistance
III: Spell-like Abilities (gate)




***********************************************************************************



DRAGON, PLATINUM
NO. ENCOUNTERED:
1
SIZE: 72'
HIT DICE: 63d12 (756HP)
MOVE: 40 ft., 120 ft. (fly)
ARMOR CLASS: 35
ATTACKS: 2 Claw (1d8), Bite (4d10), Tail (1d10), Wing (1d10) [+12 DB]
SPECIAL: Alternate Form, Breath Weapon, Spell-Like Abilities, Immunity (Acid, full), Immunity (Electricity, full), Immunity (Fire, full), Immunity (Cold, full), Spider Climb, Speak with Animals, SR 10, Water Breathing
SAVES: M, P
ALIGNMENT: Lawful Good
TYPE: Dragon
TREASURE: 18x25
XP: 304,500+63 (352,128)

Little is known about Bahamut's personal history except from the accounts of others. Tiamat blames him personally for the exile of her first husband, though the truth of this is debatable. It is known that he has personally befriended seven golden dragons of Ancient age, who come to his call and do his bidding. However, the specifics of what his friends accomplish are also hidden from sight or lost to time, or perhaps instead are so established that people might believe that things were always this way, and would scoff to think that the wonderful things in their life were made available because of the efforts of Bahamut.

DRAGON MAGIC: Platinum dragons receive two arcane and 1 divine spell each of spell levels 1 through 7.

COMBAT: A platinum dragon would rather not fight personally, believing that others should fight battles: not for reasons of honor, although that is important, but rather so that they may become stronger, and able to themselves defend others.

However, they will offer protection to those who seek it and have cause. When possible, they will ask their friends, or the friends of their friends, to offer the protection, but when the danger is too great even for them, they will step in personally.

Valiant and courageous, if the need arises, a platinum dragon will target the strongest foes first. Once the battle has reached a stage that they believe could be handled by someone weaker, they will step back and allow them to have the rest of the glory.

SPELL-LIKE ABILITIES: The platinum dragon has the spell-like abilities of brass, bronze, copper, gold, and silver dragons. At will they may use gate.

ALTERNATE FORM: Platinum dragons are able to assume the shape of any animal or humanoid creature, remaining indefinitely in the chosen form. The platinum dragon’s true form is only revealed upon its death or when subjected to true seeing. This ability renders a platinum dragon immune to the effects of polymorph.

CLOUDWALKING: A platinum dragon can tread on clouds or fog as though on solid ground. The ability functions continuously but can be negated or resumed at will.

SPIDER CLIMB: Platinum dragons have a permanent climbing ability that functions identically to the spider climb spell.

SPEAK WITH ANIMALS: This ability is constantly in effect, and functions as the spell of the same name.

SUMMON DJINNI: This ability works like a summon monster spell, except that it summons one djinni.

WATER BREATHING: A platinum dragon can breathe underwater indefinitely and can freely use its breath weapon, spells, and other abilities while submerged.

BREATH WEAPON: The platinum dragon has three different breath weapons available. The first is a cone of cold identical to the breath weapon of a white dragon. The second is a cloud of vapor that transforms 1d6 levels or hit dice per hit die of the platinum dragon into gaseous form. The third breath weapon is a cone of sonic vibrations that disintegrates up to 450 hit points on contact. Saving throws for all three breath weapons are applicable, but at a -3 penalty. A successful save reduces damage by half for the cone of cold and sonic vibration breath weapons. A successful save against the cloud of vapor breath weapon negates the effect. Each breath weapon is usable twice per day.

Code:
I: 3+ attacks/round, Speak With Animals, Frightful Presence, Speak With Animals, Spell-like Abilities, Spider Climb, Water Breathing
II: Alternate Form, Bite, Breath Weapon, Cloudwalking, Immunity (Acid), Immunity (Cold), Immunity (Electricity), Immunity (Fire), Immunity (Sleep & Paralysis), Spell-like Abilities, Spell Resistance, Summon Djinni
III: Spell-like Abilities (gate)

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Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:30 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
Captain_K wrote:
If you were an intelligent dragon, what is the first illusionist (wizard) spell you would learn? Color change... yep, that green dragon is really blue... throw that one at them, particularly for those who prepare with protections vs breath weapon and the second spell is the breath weapon itself.. first breath, real, second and third are illusions, then when they all charge in after three, nail them..


Funny you should mention that Cap. I was a player in one game where we came upon a sleeping dragon that was a brownish color. We managed our silent approach and then promptly hit it with a Cone of Cold....only to find out, as the dust was blasted off of it, that it was a white dragon... :shock:

Things went rapidly down hill for us after that point. :lol:

Don't need a color cantrip...a good old fashioned mud or dust coating does just as good apparently. :mrgreen:

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Tue Dec 26, 2017 11:26 pm
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Post Re: Dragon fire x3 a day ?
I'm really liking this discussion. Good house rules here.


Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:35 pm
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