As I mentioned in the chromatics, I've always been a D&D fan, but I feel the recent dragon designs(And some other monsters...) leave a lot to be desired, being the origin of the phrase "color-coded for your convenience". I acknowledge that fantasy doesn't necessarily reflect reality, but I think it's going overboard to make the good dragons look regal, expressive, and sculpted from solid metal, while the bad ones are made of pure satanium.
So, just as I tried to make my chromatic dragons not entirely evil, I tried to make these guys not entirely good.
I also dropped the 'made of solid metal' theme(which is really more the gem dragons' schtick) and instead gave them earth tones. My reasoning being that as these dragons tend to have a better reputation than their chromatic kin, they're given somewhat more flattering names.
Desert dwellers by nature, brass dragons are physically similar to blues, but they prefer to build their burrows in the sides of mountains or peaks. Their lairs are large and fancy, often furnished with a variety of objects from a variety of peoples, the intent being to comfortably accommodate a wide range of guests.
For you see, brass dragons, while isolated by nature, are quite intelligent and social creatures. The average brass dragon is fluent in at least ten languages, and many number in the hundreds. Brass dragons will jump at the opportunity to converse with other intelligent creatures, friend, foe and stranger alike. Many an adventurer has wound up days behind schedule because they made the mistake of stopping to chat with one of these beasts. Gossip, stories, jokes, theories, philosophy... Each one has its own range of interests, but all of them are capable of rambling nonstop for hours on end. While brass dragons are liable to dispatch helpful advice or knowledge, this tends to be buried beneath pages upon pages of small talk. Should an unfortunate victim attempt to leave the dragon's company before its thirst for chatter has been sated, it might begin to force the issue, going so far as to knock its victim out with its breath weapon. When the victim awakes, it will find itself pinned beneath the dragon's weight or buried up to its neck in the sand until it's willing to talk. Such a victim might, however, be able to bribe the dragon to release them early with a particularly intriguing gift, such as a tome or an exotic piece of furniture for its den.
Brass dragons were always my favorite of the metallics, so I didn't change much. They're the least inherently good of the good dragons, and I found them quite solid as they were.
In this case, I like both designs equally, as the they're both quite fearsome and distinct. I tried to capture its feel, while giving it the second edition's lizard-like qualities.
Copper dragons, with their habit of nesting next to cities and perching from buildings, are often mistaken for gargoyles.
Impish, fleet-winged and crafty, copper dragons are notorious pranksters. While they tend to be social and thus like to remain in the vicinity of other intelligent beings, they often have a superiority complex, and enjoy flaunting their magical powers and nimble skills in the air. Usually, such pranks are harmless and the dragons are often easily befriended, though as with any intelligent being, individuals vary. Indeed, some copper dragons live out in the mountains as hermits, only coming into town for supplies and news.
A common stereotype is that copper dragons can be easily distracted by challenging their skills, and indeed, there is often some truth to this. These dragons have a tendency to put on elaborate shows, and tend to be offended when people aren't impressed.
Their lairs tend to be imbedded deep within the earth, and as the copper dragon is naturally gifted with the stoneshape spell, are often highly elaborate, full of twists and turns that lead nowhere, or back to the entrance - and occasionally, to traps. They tend to have a series of well hidden but easy entrances hidden throughout their territories, often hidden among the buildings they neighbor.
It's worth noting that copper dragons are often employed as flying mounts. As creatures of freedom, they tend not to be offended when a landbound being wishes to be able to roam the skies with them. Indeed, proud though they may be, there's certainly no reason not to share their gifts.
Copper dragons always struck me as well suited to the 'snarky mount' archetype, and generally feel like ideal urban dragons. Not in the same sense as the polymorphing ones, but as an animal that is naturally attuned to the city lifestyle.
I found the third edition design fairly solid, and used it as a base, with a bit of 'Bandy' thrown in. It was drawn with the most bizarre, anatomically confusing wings... but I'm not one to shaft creativity, so I tried to incorporate them.
The sea dragons, the bronze spends most of its life in the ocean, relying on its belly scutes more than its legs to move it about on land.
Bronze dragons can be likened to sapient whales. Highly intelligent, and arguably the most social of dragons, bronzes often live in groups, and love to interact with their neighbors.
The more benign bronze dragons tend to lurk in or just outside of harbors, seeing off ships, welcoming them in, and often rescuing sailors in danger. More nefarious bronze dragons have been known to bully coastal towns into providing them with food and sometimes exotic items for their lairs. Still others have been known to capsize ships for fun. Playful though the bronze dragon may be, their idea of 'fun' varies from one dragon to another.
Still, bronze dragons are more often than not seen as signs of good fortune, as they tend to integrate themselves into coastal(and often aquatic) communities.
Of all dragons, bronzes have the hardest time learning humanoid's languages, given that their own consists of a series of sonar clicks that humans are flat out incapable of generating.
Bronze dragons are second only to steels when it comes to polymorphing into humans to mingle, though unlike the charismatic and often amorous steels, bronzes tend to be awkward among land people, and often silent. They enjoy attending parties and celebrations, but only a handful ever manage to speak. A savvy townsperson can often recognize a disguised bronze dragon.
I could never quite put my finger on the bronze's design. The second edition is a fairly typical fantasy dragon, while the third edition follows the same mould as the other metallics, with some small fins attached. As their personalities are similar to those of dolphins and whales, I made the design invoke aquatic mammals - though with more seal than anything. And of course, I tweaked the personality to match dolphins more closely - the good and the bad - with a touch of certain interpretations of merfolk. I like the idea of a bronze dragon in human form bumbling through a big, formal event, where everyone recognizes him, but no one wants to say anything.
As the legend goes, gold dragons and red dragons were once one and the same. In ages long past, a great red dragon managed to demolish every single obstacle on the landmass, and became the most revered, powerful entity on the entire continent. There was nowhere to go but down. Now that the tiny people beneath its feet no longer even began to pose a threat, the dragon was left alone to stew in its thoughts. With nothing else to consider, it couldn't help but become slowly more and more invested in the tiny creatures it had once stepped on to reach its position.
Eventually, as it aged, it grew less and less proud, less infatuated with what it had earned, and one night, made a decision: It no longer had any need to fight for itself. So it would instead fight for the ones beneath it.
Thus was born the gold dragon, every bit as fearsome, powerful and ferocious as the red, but with its forces directed not at power, but against evil.
Gold dragons are paladins, pure and simple. They have no single habitat, but settle for roaming the worlds, seeking out evil to exterminate. It appoints itself judge, jury and executioner, swooping in to leave tyrants crushed, bandits as ashes, and armies of evil in flames. Typically, the gold dragon will roam the land until it finds a town or city, where it will assume human form and get a handle on its surroundings. It might make friends, take on companions, form rivalries and become invested in the community, up until it has a firm understanding of how things work. If all is well, the dragon will leave after a few months, hopefully cleaning up some crime while it was there. Should it find itself in the company of evil, however, the gold dragon's wrath will be felt.
Gold dragons are generally viewed with reverence and treated with respect, though their appearance can sometimes be construed as a bad omen. Should the gold dragon make itself known, it means evil is afoot, and the world will soon be shaken as it 'fixes' things.
I went with the second edition design. We need more than one eastern dragon(the mist dragon not shown), and I like the way it works. Gold dragons were always the good counterpart to reds, so I tried to make something of that. I like the idea of them, not as perfect angels, but as iron hammers of justice to be feared, but who get the job done. The potential to become knight templars is there, but it's certainly not the default.
Gold dragons are sort of like paladins, but I like to think of them more as superheroes, with a bit of the Doctor thrown in.
Imagine, if you will, the old lady who fawned over you as a baby. Now imagine she's still there, but is now eighty feet long, with wings and scales.
The silver dragon is vain, high strung, firmly convinced of its superiority, and the single most compassionate being in existence.
Silver dragons are the second most powerful of the metallic dragons, and view this as a reason to be responsible and care for the less fortunate - whom they believe to be just about everyone else.
Silver dragons build shelters, found communities, take in the homeless and do their best to be as helpful as possible - with all the patronization that comes with it. They've been known to preach philosophy - the exact value of such being variable - and a few have founded churches. To them, every single other being is a child to be cared for, but educated.
To an outsider, the silver dragon is among the most irritating creatures in existence, but at the same time, the good they do to those in need is impossible to argue with. Many of the most successful people in the world were once at the bottom of the social barrel before the intervention of a silver dragon.
Silvers may view other dragons with the respect of siblings, or with pity as less enlightened than they. Neither reds nor golds tend to get along with them, though they're often found in the company of bronzes.
Silver dragons are less likely to take human form than some metallic dragons, but those that do are often performers who seek to inspire people with their arts. Some silver dragons have inspired entire cities to greatness with their music.
This is prettymuch the second edition design. I don't know why anyone would want to change it.
The silvers are basically the rose angels of the draconic world. Like the others though, I changed them a bit so that they have a dark side. Like the others, there is the potential to become a menace, but generally they're decent folks. You might compare them to the wasps from Antz.
So that's the metallic dragons... I might do a few of the others - I have some ideas for the deep, mercury and steels. And I find myself wanting to do a few other classic D&D monsters. AND I still need to do up the characters in the HiH cast's games.
That's official D&D lore. This is my own take on it.
D&D has some pretty cool concepts, but there are some things I just don't care for. Note how my reds aren't Always Chaotic Evil, my whites are vicious, opportunistic predators instead of... well, an entire race of Starscreams, and my blues are basically big, intelligent, apathetic lizards instead of affably evil overlords.
Basically, I was tired of the dragons being absolutely good and evil powers, and wanted to put my own spin on them.
Though the brass is just about exactly the same. I love the brass.
She's the Queen of the Chromatic dragons and in the Monster Manuals I've read. Considering that Bahamut is her brother. She's not just for the tv show(hell, i've never even seen it and I know who/what she is).
Also, why does one of them (the copper one?) have only two legs? Last I checked all the metallic dragons had 4 legs.
Understood. Her story changes depending on which version of the game anyway. Personally I like the 1e version best myself (story wise), but I have never felt any artist has done justice to her design wise. My favorite is probably the cartoon version, but the emphasis on the red head is probably not the best idea.
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`anmari has been spreading her infectious positivity throughout our community for over 6 years. Throughout this time Ana has been at the core of all things devious, passionately developing an eclectic gallery, helping organise devmeets, participating in chat events and also recently completed dedicating her time as a Community Volunteer. We are absolutely delighted to bestow the Deviousness Award for May 2013 to `anmari, congratulations! Read More