Dragonlance WotC Talks About Dragonlance's Flying Citadel

In a new video from WotC, it is revealed that the adventure in Shadow of the Dragon Queen is the story of the first flying citadel. They also note parallels between the movie Rogue One and the adventure, and call the flying citadel the "Star Destroyer of Dragonlance".

[[UPDATE -- WotC appears to have taken down this video]]

In the adventure the forces of the dragon queen (Takhisis), led by Lord Soth, launch a foray into Solamnia to get at a forgotten ruin, The CIty of Lost Names, which is an ancient Istarian flying city.

F. Wesley Schneider says that, like Star Wars, Dragonlance is a setting at war. "There will always be a war". In this story, the characters are in a story as yet untold in Dragonlance, where they are the main motivators who turn the tide of the war.


Above is an image from the upcoming adventure. Below is Keith Parkinson's original Dragonlance flying citadel artwork. You can buy a print of it from his website.


According to the Dragonlance wiki:

The Flying Citadels were thought up by Ariakas in the winter of 332 AC, but the knowledge of creating them was already known by wizards and clerics for thousands of years. He envisioned a fleet of flying castles that would destroy any enemy that stood in front of them. The idea though, would take almost 20 years before it was put onto the field of battle. The flying citadels were first put into use on the assault on Kalaman during the Siege of Kalaman. By the end of the war, about a dozen of flying citadels were created. The citadels are commanded by a Flight General, and captained by a Wind Captain.

Flying citadels are created after six months of planning and preparation between a Black Robe Wizard and a Cleric of Takhisis. First engineers or architects find a suitable citadel that would be able to withstand the strain and its suitability as a flying citadel. Laborers for the next six months work uninterrupted with the Wind Captain's Chair and the Wings of Stone are installed. The ritual to raise the flying citadel is performed next, with the mage and cleric acting together in the Wings of Stone chamber. The Wind Captain then takes control, and raises the citadel from the ground and directs it to its next destination.

The outside of a flying citadel looks simply like any castle that was ripped out of the ground, but with a large amount of rock under it for support. The walls and buildings usually suffer some damage in the form of many cracks, but are held in check by the magic, either divine or arcane. Some of the walls don't manage to come with the citadel, and are left on the ground in ruins. There are also barracks in most of the citadels to house about three thousand draconians or human soldiers. The citadel's original Keep is where the Highmaster will make his command center.

The only other room of note is in the lowest portion of the flying citadel. Here, deep in the Keep's dungeon, is where the Wings of Stone can be found. This is needed in order to rip the citadel from the ground, and to keep it afloat.
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Whizbang Dustyboots

Gnometown Hero
This is what my players would do. An interesting base of OPs it would make.
The easiest (?) solution for a campaign is to have the big bad clearly up to something for the first part of the campaign, getting the knowledge (either from books or taking people prisoner) from arcane architects, great wizards, astronomers, etc. Then, the ritual to do something is clearly close at hand around level nine, and there's a hard-fought battle to get into the castle. Add a ticking clock onto the big battle and then, when it's counted all the way down, the castle takes off, possibly carrying some or all of the player characters with it, into the atmosphere and then, assuming they can't take control of it before then, into wildspace.

Those left on the ground have to give chase, to stop the villain from using their now vastly more powerful fortress to do who knows what. Luckily, one of the walls left behind also includes a tower, where one of the villainous bad guy's lieutenants was based, complete with notes explaining what just happened ... and research showing that a spelljamming vessel is hidden where the remaining player characters can get to it (after a suitable dungeon crawl, including some weird Spelljammer monsters and the like, to convey that things are about to be different in the back half of the campaign).

Then it's a simple matter of chase after the fortress, slip aboard, rescue the princess other party members, and defeat the villains in charge of the flying fortress. But before they destroy it, they learn that, while the villains might not have been great, they were creating the fortress to flee an imminent world-destroying threat FROM SPAAAAAACE and now have to use their new headquarters to gather allies from throughout multiple systems and take the fight to the alien warlord whose own even larger fortress, is currently barreling toward their home through the Astral Sea.

Anyway, that's what I'd do, as a DM.
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Whizbang Dustyboots

Gnometown Hero
I think of them more as "crashing citadels", because that's usually when the drama starts and they get exciting.
I dunno, someone parking one of these above another city and just dropping rocks over the side is pretty dramatic. Even if the only magic involved was just getting the citadel flying to begin with, it's an incredible weapon that's hard to beat.

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