Fantastic Beasts and How to Slay Them: Dragons

Did you know that there are dragons in Dungeons & Dragons? I know, I know, I was surprised as well. Not just a few dragons either. The world of Harry Potter has some dragons to deal with too.

They come in all shapes – from babies the size of a horse to elders thirty feet in length – and all sorts of colours. The ‘good’ dragons are all shiny colours, golds and silvers, whilst the ‘bad’ dudes are standard colours like red and blue. Not only does the colour inform their general behaviour and habits, but different breath weapons.

(I’ll never forget the first time a new player confidentially stated, pre-fight: “Don’t worry guys, I’ve got this. I’m resistant to fire damage!” only to watch in horror as the green dragon unleashed an intense cloud of poison on their fledgling character. Priceless.)

There’s a variety of dragons in Fantastic Beasts too, but the variety isn’t quite as… well, varied. As far as I can tell, all the dragons in the Potterverse are actually way more beast-like than their D&D counterparts. Monstrous in strength and scale, don’t get me wrong, but significantly less than what is described in the D&D Monster Manual.

Harry Potter’s dragons are more primal, more feal, and dangerous in the way a supremely armoured, gigantic animal might be. However, the D&D dragons are intelligent, conniving, empire building, sometimes magic wielding, ego-driven, forces of nature that affect the world around them for what can be several centuries of existence.

Dragons

It wasn’t worth uploading one dragon a week. These dragons are all fire-breathers, with only a few key differences described, so the stats for each one are not significantly different. Most of the contrast is visual, though one or two have specialised bites and other weapons. A few poison bits here, a spiked tail there, a physical mass that crushes building way over there.

Compared to D&D dragons, these monsters are quite a bit weaker. Compared to fire dragons of the same size, these dragons are missing the ‘legendary’ abilities Adult and Ancient dragons usually get, and they don’t have the ‘lair actions’ that cause the world around the dragon to magically alter. I think this makes a lot of sense. A Potterverse dragon is still dangerous, but they don’t compare to the intelligence and intensity of the superiors in Dungeons & Dragons.

A shark is dangerous. Yet I think we can all agree that if the shark had a bond-villian-level IQ, the ability to cause a region to slowly flood, the ability to cause creatures within a hundred feet of it to be intensely afraid of it by its presence alone, live for 600 years… you get where I’m going with this. Dragons are bad news in any situation, but I’d rather take on a Hungarian Horntail over an Ancient Red Dragon.

Thank You For Reading.

If you like these dragons, have a look here at the other Fantastic Beasts I’ve converted to Dungeons & Dragons.

Author: Rufus Scott

I am a long term Gamer, a full-time History Teacher and a part-time geek. I enjoy writing about the positive aspects of gaming, especially when it comes to education. My posts are sometimes nostalgic, occasionally irrelevant, largely meant to provoke further discussion. I'll sometimes punctuate these whimsical ramblings with a random comment on gaming and/or teaching.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s