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D&D 5E Do you like or dislike Song & Steeal Dragons being demoted to Folklore?

Do you like or dislike Song & Steeal Dragons being demoted to Folklore?

  • I hate or Dislike the removal of Steel and Song Dragons as type of Dragon

    Votes: 18 22.8%
  • I like or love the removal of Steel and Song Dragons as a type of Dragon

    Votes: 9 11.4%
  • Neutral as a Gem Dragon

    Votes: 52 65.8%

  • Total voters
    79

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Yeah, true. I'll add, I think the deal as I heard worded was that they needed to publish a FR book (not a novel, just any book) per year, and 5E has not violated that.
They don't need to though - companies simply don't inherit that stuff. Look at the issue of Disney not paying royalties to writers (most notably Alan Dean Foster) who have written for franchises Disney later bought. I believe they eventually accepted a moral responsibility, but legally, Disney was right - the company that owes you money does not exist.
 


I always thought they were silly. To me Song and Steel are life choices that dragons may make. They are not species of dragons. Just like a human or an elf can chose to be a blacksmith or inventor or singer; a dragon can chose to disguise itself and take up the role of a song or steel or x.

So maybe its more of a dragon "class", or a template or something, but not a base type/race/specie.
 

I always thought they were silly. To me Song and Steel are life choices that dragons may make. They are not species of dragons. Just like a human or an elf can chose to be a blacksmith or inventor or singer; a dragon can chose to disguise itself and take up the role of a song or steel or x.

So maybe its more of a dragon "class", or a template or something, but not a base type/race/specie.

Except no they had different physiology, like different breath weapons and other stuff.
 

Scribe

Hero
This isn't just theory craft.

I used a steel dragon in my old AD&D Planescape campaign who masqueraded as a gnomish antiquities dealer, showing up in various cities to barter and swap lore with the PCs. He ended up publishing one PC's book on languages. There was always some hint at his draconic nature, like steel-grey eyes, a scale pattern to his doublet, a scarf seeming to be made of steel mesh, oddities so ancient they far eclipsed the gnomish lifespan, instantly recognizing the various types of steel (cold, Baatorian green, Abyssal bloodiron, etc), a coiled dragon ring, off-handedly referencing some event with firsthand intimacy that occurred ages ago, etc.

Part of the story arc was the PCs were trying to shift a town that was slipping across the Outlands (and towards the Abyss) back into Arcadia. One of the sub-quests to achieve this goal involved enticing lawful merchants to resume trading activity with the town. The PCs decided to convince their "gnomish" friend to do business with the town, and that's when his backstory was revealed about having a disagreement with his draconic brethren that led to him traveling the planes, studying humanoid cultures in hopes of creating a utopia to prove his jaded brethren wrong. The PCs ended up debating philosophy with two elder dragons to convince them how this town would be one form of utopia once it transitioned back to Arcadia. It was a lot of fun playing with the "we know he's a dragon, but no one is coming out and saying it." And the dragon sibling "politics" was a hoot
Just want to say, thanks for sharing.

A great example, and Planescape related. :)
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
A template isn't redundant. A lore is the bed Rick the game is made from.

Except the template for Steel dragons isn't a template, it's just a silver dragon with an acid breath instead. It's terrible content to waste pages on.

And although I think lore can be useful, if it's paired with bad rules it's completely useless. Your analogy is backwards; lore depends on good rules to sustain the game, otherwise the system (and lore) will be abandoned by the playerbase.

Anyway, "I need this because a previous edition's book had lore on it" is not a smart way to expand a game.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
They don't need to though - companies simply don't inherit that stuff. Look at the issue of Disney not paying royalties to writers (most notably Alan Dean Foster) who have written for franchises Disney later bought. I believe they eventually accepted a moral responsibility, but legally, Disney was right - the company that owes you money does not exist.

I don't entirely disagree, but I believe it's a little less black-and-white than that. I believe Disney is suing Steve Ditko's family and others for trying to get copyrights (that I assume would be legally predating Disney's ownership) so there's some debate on whether new ownership means a blank slate of responsibilities.
 

Except no they had different physiology, like different breath weapons and other stuff.
To me, not meaningfully different. Like @Urriak Uruk said, just changing the breath weapon damage type is .. something any DM can do without flinching or even thinking about it. Now, if they had completely new capabilities, then they might add value. But again, they are the same as a other dragons, they just chose to live in disguise among the races. i.e. they are silver/bronze dragons that don't live in caves and that doesn't require a new stat block or write up.
 

To me, not meaningfully different. Like @Urriak Uruk said, just changing the breath weapon damage type is .. something any DM can do without flinching or even thinking about it. Now, if they had completely new capabilities, then they might add value. But again, they are the same as a other dragons, they just chose to live in disguise among the races. i.e. they are silver/bronze dragons that don't live in caves and that doesn't require a new stat block or write up.

Which an unneeded retcon. Look if they had nothing useful to add they should have just not have the side bar in the book.
 


Quickleaf

Legend
Well, I've actually listed to a Lore Your Should Know with Chris Perkins, and I remember him saying how he personally believed (at that time) previous editions went hog-wild with too many dragon types. I remember him even saying that he thought gem dragons were excessive, as he didn't like the idea that every alignment had to have its own dragon type.

So there was probably some internal tension at the D&D Team as to how many dragons should be statted before it started to look redundant and bloated. And although Song/Steel dragons may feel unique from a lore perspective, I don't see why they would be so special from a statistics perspective, so I'm not really surprised they didn't make it.
Yeah, I imagine there were some animated discussions about what to include.

However, my point was not that “steel dragons needs stats”, but rather that the sidebar in Fizban’s is anemic lore-wise & a better approach would be, if you’re going to do a retcon, at least do it well. And by “welI” mean some more in-depth lore building around what being a metallic “steel dragon” means in terms of the DM’s adventure backstory and giving the DM ideas for how to role play such as dragon.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
However, my point was not that “steel dragons needs stats”, but rather that the sidebar in Fizban’s is anemic lore-wise & a better approach would be, if you’re going to do a retcon, at least do it well. And by “we’ll” I mean some more in-depth lore building around what being a metallic “steel dragon” means in terms of the DM’s adventure backstory and giving the DM ideas for how to role play such as dragon.

I prefer this type of "door-open-a-jar" type of lore, that leaves open various interpretations. I especially prefer it for games like D&D or Warhammer, as it allows players to use it differently to customize their own games.

I get some folks want more precise definitions and backstory, but when you overexplain lore, I find it less interesting. I can add a level of mysticism much more easily when it is kept vague like this.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
I prefer this type of "door-open-a-jar" type of lore, that leaves open various interpretations. I especially prefer it for games like D&D or Warhammer, as it allows players to use it differently to customize their own games.

I get some folks want more precise definitions and backstory, but when you overexplain lore, I find it less interesting. I can add a level of mysticism much more easily when it is kept vague like this.
Agree to disagree 😉 If I want vague but evocative I’ll tune into Dael Kingsmill’s videos.
 

Yeah, I imagine there were some animated discussions about what to include.

However, my point was not that “steel dragons needs stats”, but rather that the sidebar in Fizban’s is anemic lore-wise & a better approach would be, if you’re going to do a retcon, at least do it well. And by “welI” mean some more in-depth lore building around what being a metallic “steel dragon” means in terms of the DM’s adventure backstory and giving the DM ideas for how to role play such as dragon.

It would have been better to not do it at all. This sidebar adds nothing positive to the game at all and angers people.
 



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