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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: 7 17.9%
  • Option #2, Retro: 8 age categories (see below).

    Votes: 6 15.4%
  • Option #3, Classic: 12 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 6 15.4%
  • Option #4, Neo: 5 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 9 23.1%
  • Option #5, Modern: 4 age categories (see below)

    Votes: 9 23.1%
  • Option #6, Modern Twist: 4 + 4 (see below)

    Votes: 4 10.3%
  • Option #7, Retro Twist: 8 + 1 (see below)

    Votes: 10 25.6%
  • Option #9, Other (please explain)

    Votes: 3 7.7%

  • Total voters
    39

TheBoredGM

Beneath our modern banality, we're just savages.
I started with 8+1 and it is probably still my favorite, but I am flip-flopping all over the place at the moment.
For me, the more complicated the better! I would do the standard 12 categories with Elder after Very Old, so the wyrms get +2 CR. IMO great terms should be in the early 30s of CR, plus basic options for expanding dragons by age, since they never stop aging (e.g great-great-great wyrm).
 

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NotAYakk

Legend
Dragons are iconic enough that I want something a bit different.

First, 1 per size category is great except small, plus 1 "colossal" for 5. Maybe drop medium even; smallest dragons are large. Work out a "colossal" trait that does interesting things (it is Gargantuan size, with extra features; "immune to restrained, paralyzed. When grappled by a non-colossal creature, has full movement and moves the grappling creature along with it. Immune to forced movement. Can break most kinds of blocking terrain treating it as difficult terrain; otherwise ignores difficult terrain." or whatever.

5e has 4 tiers; 1-4, 5-10, 11-16 and 17-20. Dragon's should be roughly tuned to be end-tier boses.

A deadly-ish encounter for a group of 4 end-tier characters, with a bit of rounding to make the gaps even, works out to roughly:
Large: CR 7 (10') (deadly for T1)
Huge: CR 14 (15') (deadly for T2)
Gargantuan: CR 21 (20-30') (deadly for T3)
Colossal: CR 25 (40-80') (deadly for T4)
Titanic: CR 29 (100'-200') (because sometimes you want a dragon the size of a hill)

Next, modules you can bolt onto dragons. Want it to be a badass example of a dragon at a tier? Bolt on this bit.

Rather than a bunch of sub-adult mid-way categories, I'd rather modify the previous category with 1 (or maybe more) "badass" boosts.

Those "bolt on" additions should modify CR in calculated ways (per dragon), and be intended for either higher optimization parties, fighting at different spots in the tier, or larger parties.

One "bolt on" should be Mythic, as an example; it doesn't adjust CR, just makes you face two encounters of the same CR in a row.
 

Jediking

Explorer
This DMGuilds product has two additional dragons for age categories. Monster Manual Expanded (5E) - Dungeon Masters Guild | Dungeon Masters Guild
1. Young Adult (in between Young and Adult), good for 2nd-tier parties as a challenging boss encounter or medium encounter for higher level parties
2. Mature Adult (in between Adult and Ancient), good for 3rd tier-parties as a boss without the full complexity of an Ancient Dragon.

I have bumped this product before, but it has been fantastic and useful for my own games. I am not affiliated with it in any way, just a happy customer!
 

TheBoredGM

Beneath our modern banality, we're just savages.
Dragons are iconic enough that I want something a bit different. First, 1 per size category is great except small, plus 1 "colossal" for 5. Maybe drop medium even; smallest dragons are large. Work out a "colossal" trait that does interesting things (it is Gargantuan size, with extra features; "immune to restrained, paralyzed. When grappled by a non-colossal creature, has full movement and moves the grappling creature along with it. Immune to forced movement. Can break most kinds of blocking terrain treating it as difficult terrain; otherwise ignores difficult terrain." or whatever. 5e has 4 tiers; 1-4, 5-10, 11-16 and 17-20. Dragon's should be roughly tuned to be end-tier boses. A deadly-ish encounter for a group of 4 end-tier characters, with a bit of rounding to make the gaps even, works out to roughly: Large: CR 7 (10') (deadly for T1) Huge: CR 14 (15') (deadly for T2) Gargantuan: CR 21 (20-30') (deadly for T3) Colossal: CR 25 (40-80') (deadly for T4) Titanic: CR 29 (100'-200') (because sometimes you want a dragon the size of a hill) Next, modules you can bolt onto dragons. Want it to be a badass example of a dragon at a tier? Bolt on this bit. Rather than a bunch of sub-adult mid-way categories, I'd rather modify the previous category with 1 (or maybe more) "badass" boosts. Those "bolt on" additions should modify CR in calculated ways (per dragon), and be intended for either higher optimization parties, fighting at different spots in the tier, or larger parties. One "bolt on" should be Mythic, as an example; it doesn't adjust CR, just makes you face two encounters of the same CR in a row.
Good ideas! Dave has already implemented the colossal trait into his epic dragons. However, IMO the great wyrms or great-great-wyrms and up (e.g Dragon gods) should have that Titanic size (space 100x100 ft or more). In Dave's concept that doesn't just mean bigger size, it requires colossal parts- multiple statblocks, for each appendage.
"(Dragon 's tail)
CR 24
HP 655
Blah blah blah
If the dragon's tail is destroyed it loses the seige monster trait
Blah blah blah"
Typically you have to destroy the head or heart, etc to kill the dragon.
 


dave2008

Legend
I'd love to see some Mythic dragons!

As for age categories, I've actually been trying to avoid using wyrmlings. I kinda feel like dragons should be these epic foes, not tier 1 opponents. Meeting a dragon in combat should be an event.
I've started to make some, but then I decided to do this poll first and get other peoples thoughts. Here is the draft of the Great Wyrm Red Dragon (Mythic)
 

dave2008

Legend
Dragons are iconic enough that I want something a bit different.

First, 1 per size category is great except small, plus 1 "colossal" for 5. Maybe drop medium even; smallest dragons are large. Work out a "colossal" trait that does interesting things (it is Gargantuan size, with extra features; "immune to restrained, paralyzed. When grappled by a non-colossal creature, has full movement and moves the grappling creature along with it. Immune to forced movement. Can break most kinds of blocking terrain treating it as difficult terrain; otherwise ignores difficult terrain." or whatever.

5e has 4 tiers; 1-4, 5-10, 11-16 and 17-20. Dragon's should be roughly tuned to be end-tier boses.

A deadly-ish encounter for a group of 4 end-tier characters, with a bit of rounding to make the gaps even, works out to roughly:
Large: CR 7 (10') (deadly for T1)
Huge: CR 14 (15') (deadly for T2)
Gargantuan: CR 21 (20-30') (deadly for T3)
Colossal: CR 25 (40-80') (deadly for T4)
Titanic: CR 29 (100'-200') (because sometimes you want a dragon the size of a hill)

Next, modules you can bolt onto dragons. Want it to be a badass example of a dragon at a tier? Bolt on this bit.

Rather than a bunch of sub-adult mid-way categories, I'd rather modify the previous category with 1 (or maybe more) "badass" boosts.

Those "bolt on" additions should modify CR in calculated ways (per dragon), and be intended for either higher optimization parties, fighting at different spots in the tier, or larger parties.

One "bolt on" should be Mythic, as an example; it doesn't adjust CR, just makes you face two encounters of the same CR in a row.
That is in line with most of my thoughts as well, though I don't mind have young dragons for those you want them. I typically use them,in fact I pretty much stick to Ancient or older dragons in my games.

I already use a colossal trait with my monsters larger than 20x20, so I am with you there as well.
 

dave2008

Legend
Good ideas! Dave has already implemented the colossal trait into his epic dragons. However, IMO the great wyrms or great-great-wyrms and up (e.g Dragon gods) should have that Titanic size (space 100x100 ft or more). In Dave's concept that doesn't just mean bigger size, it requires colossal parts- multiple statblocks, for each appendage.
"(Dragon 's tail)
CR 24
HP 655
Blah blah blah
If the dragon's tail is destroyed it loses the seige monster trait
Blah blah blah"
Typically you have to destroy the head or heart, etc to kill the dragon.
Hmm, I don't have a specifica Titanic trait, but I like the idea for things that are really big. Maybe colossal is in the 30x30 - 100x100 and titanic is over 100x100? I will to think about it. I have just been using colossal and then giving it whatever that monster needed, but maybe a more codified approach would be good.
 

dave2008

Legend
This DMGuilds product has two additional dragons for age categories. Monster Manual Expanded (5E) - Dungeon Masters Guild | Dungeon Masters Guild
1. Young Adult (in between Young and Adult), good for 2nd-tier parties as a challenging boss encounter or medium encounter for higher level parties
2. Mature Adult (in between Adult and Ancient), good for 3rd tier-parties as a boss without the full complexity of an Ancient Dragon.

I have bumped this product before, but it has been fantastic and useful for my own games. I am not affiliated with it in any way, just a happy customer!
Actually I am not fond of the dragons in the MME. He really didn't so anything interesting with them IMO. I will be posting my own designs on these forums (5e Monster Updates), I have drafts of the Elder, Ancient, and Great Wyrm Red dragons up, but I will update them after this poll.
 

TheBoredGM

Beneath our modern banality, we're just savages.
Hmm, I don't have a specifica Titanic trait, but I like the idea for things that are really big. Maybe colossal is in the 30x30 - 100x100 and titanic is over 100x100? I will to think about it. I have just been using colossal and then giving it whatever that monster needed, but maybe a more codified approach would be good.
By Titanic I meant colossal parts.
 



dave2008

Legend
By Titanic I meant colossal parts.
I got that from your description, I just took the idea in a different direction. Though maybe "Titanic" is a better term than colossal parts, less confusion that way. Also, I think you can handle 100x100 space dragons without colossal parts, but that is an option too.
 



NotAYakk

Legend
Well there you have it then. 6 age categories ;)

On the other hand, I like it that not all dragons go colossal.
Sure, not all dragons go Colossal (or Titanic).

Or maybe it just takes literally a million years for a Dragon to grow that big, and most Dragon's don't live that long. Those that are that big are remnants of the time before the Gods.
 

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