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5E Dragon Age Categories: The Poll!

What Dragon Age Category do you prefer

  • Option #1, Some old w/ some new: 9 age categories (see below).

    Votes: 6 19.4%
  • Option #2, Retro: 8 age categories (see below).

    Votes: 5 16.1%
  • Option #3, Classic: 12 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 6 19.4%
  • Option #4, Neo: 5 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 7 22.6%
  • Option #5, Modern: 4 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 7 22.6%
  • Option #6, Modern Twist: 4 + 4 (see below)

    Votes: 4 12.9%
  • Option #7, Retro Twist: 8 + 1 (see below)

    Votes: 6 19.4%
  • Option #9, Other (please explain)

    Votes: 3 9.7%

  • Total voters
    31

dave2008

Legend
So, I am interested in re-working and improving the 5e dragons. One of the things I want to do is bring back some of the additional age categories from earlier editions, and I would love to get your thoughts! Here are the descriptions of each option, using red dragons as an example. CRs presented are for illustrative purposes only. These could change. You can vote up to 3 times.

Option #1, Some old w/ some new: 9 categories (I like the symmetry around the adult stage)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling
Very Young
Young
Sub-adult
Adult
Elder
Ancient
Wyrm
Great Wyrm

Option #2, Retro: 8 age categories (I like the symmetry around the adult stage)
Age CategoryCR
Very Young4
Young7
Sub-adult10
Young adult13
Adult16
Old19
Very Old22
Ancient25

Option #3, Classic: 12 age categories (longest running)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling4
Very Young6
Young 8
Juvenile10
Young adult 12
Adult 14
Mature adult16
Old18
Very Old20
Ancient22
Wyrm24
Great Wyrm26

Option #4, Neo: 5 age categories (I like the symmetry around the adult stage)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling2
Young8
Adult14
Elder20
Ancient26

Option #5, Modern: 4 age categories (what we have now)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling4
Young 10
Adult17
Ancient24

Option #6, Modern Twist: 4 + 4 (4 stat blocks / 4 mythic options)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling / Young4/Mythic*
Sub-adult/Adult10/Mythic*
Elder/Ancient17/Mythic*
Wyrm/Great Wyrm24/Mythic*
*Each stat block gets a mythic trait called the next higher age category. When you want an older dragon, but not up to the next CR, you activate the mythic trait. One stat block, two dragons.

Option #7, Retro Twist: 8 + 1 (Mythic Great Wyrm)
Age CategoryCR
Wyrmling4
Young 7
Juvenile10
Young adult13
Adult16
Mature adult 19
Elder22
Ancient / Great Wyrm*25 / Mythic*
*The ancient dragon has the mythic trait called "Great Wyrm." When you want to have great wyrm, you just activate the mythic trait. One stat block, two dragons.
 

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#1 is closest to what I'd like. Basically you take the 4 that are already in 5e, and add one after each of those but before the last. I think perhaps for the one after Ancient you could maybe combine it with your Option #7 and make it Wyrm, with Mythic turning it into Great Wyrm.

I would use "Young Adult" rather than "Sub-Adult" in all instance though. Young Adult is traditional, whereas if you asked me what a Sub-Adult dragon was without showing me the chart my initial assumption would be that it just meant any dragon that was older than a wyrmling but not an adult yet. If I thought about it for a while, I might decide that perhaps it was referring to one just below the Adult category, but it's not as accessible as "Young Adult".
 


dave2008

Legend
#1 is closest to what I'd like. Basically you take the 4 that are already in 5e, and add one after each of those but before the last. I think perhaps for the one after Ancient you could maybe combine it with your Option #7 and make it Wyrm, with Mythic turning it into Great Wyrm.

I would use "Young Adult" rather than "Sub-Adult" in all instance though. Young Adult is traditional, whereas if you asked me what a Sub-Adult dragon was without showing me the chart my initial assumption would be that it just meant any dragon that was older than a wyrmling but not an adult yet. If I thought about it for a while, I might decide that perhaps it was referring to one just below the Adult category, but it's not as accessible as "Young Adult".
Thank you for the input! I'm a little confused, do you prefer #1 or #7? Not the actual names, but the category arrangement?
 


Krachek

Adventurer
Dragon should also wear name tag with their name and age!
For me young, old, adult is enough.
We are stuck in a multiple levels progression, so we need to have dragon for all level.
Of course it feel awkward to say it’s a CR 13 dragon, But having 12 ages categories is not far from it.
 

dave2008

Legend
Dragon should also wear name tag with their name and age!
For me young, old, adult is enough.
We are stuck in a multiple levels progression, so we need to have dragon for all level.
Of course it feel awkward to say it’s a CR 13 dragon, But having 12 ages categories is not far from it.
That is a good point. D&D (BECMI) didn't have age categories at all, just small, large, and huge sized dragons (an then a modifier to make each size slightly bigger or smaller).

However, I wouldn't say stuck as it has changed in most editions:
1e = 8 ages
2e = 12 ages
3e = 12 ages
4e = 5 ages
5e = 4 ages

With 4e and 5e you have a 6-9 level / CR jump between ages, it is not exactly a treadmill.
 
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Crimson Longinus

Adventurer
I don't think we need more age categories. In fact remove the wyrmling. Killing baby dragons is gross and also every dragon should be an utter menace, So lowest level ones being CR 10ish is fine.

Also, if one wants more categories, then it feels redundant to duplicate them for each type of a dragon. So instead of having 'young red dragon,' adult black dragon' etc. just have say ten dragon stat blocks of different power, and then a sidebar for giving them the type specific breath weapons, resistances and such.
 


dave2008

Legend
I don't think we need more age categories. In fact remove the wyrmling. Killing baby dragons is gross and also every dragon should be an utter menace, So lowest level ones being CR 10ish is fine.
I get that. I typically only feature mature dragons, but still like the diversity of stat blocks for those who like to take on dragons at different levels and just for world building. I did have my PCs stubble into a black dragon nest once and need some very young dragons once.

Also, if one wants more categories, then it feels redundant to duplicate them for each type of a dragon. So instead of having 'young red dragon,' adult black dragon' etc. just have say ten dragon stat blocks of different power, and then a sidebar for giving them the type specific breath weapons, resistances and such.
Oh,I diagree completely with this. The different power levels and abilities need to be emphasized not reduced. 4e did this better than 5e and I plan to bring some of that back. A 10 CR black dragon should feel very different from a 10 CR red dragon IMO.
 






I liked the 8+1 myself. Doing ancient as Mythic makes sense to me, but the 4+4 seemed really silly - I get how it works rules-wise do do that, but it doesn't work thematically and sort of devalues Mythic (which doesn't have to only be on high-end monsters, but shouldn't be something you grow in and out of).
 


dave2008

Legend
I liked the 8+1 myself. Doing ancient as Mythic makes sense to me, but the 4+4 seemed really silly - I get how it works rules-wise do do that, but it doesn't work thematically and sort of devalues Mythic (which doesn't have to only be on high-end monsters, but shouldn't be something you grow in and out of).
I started with 8+1 and it is probably still my favorite, but I am flip-flopping all over the place at the moment.
 

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