The D&D community was blessed with an announcement of yet another book coming in October. On top of The Wild beyond the Witchlight, a Feywild adventure book, coming in September and the MTG crossover, Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos, due in November, Fizban’s rounds out a pretty good end of year.
Although there a few mysteries abounding in this announcement leaving us wondering what could be coming in a ‘Treasury of Dragons’ there are a lot of the content spoiled ahead of time and hinted at by Wotc in the official articles.
Who the hell is Fizban? And what does he mean to what’s to come in D&D?
Well, Fizban the Fabulous is a Dragonlance character. He’s a ‘befuddled old mage’ who factored greatly in the War of the Lance. But this doddering old man was much more than what he seemed. It came to be told that he was, in fact, a human avatar of the Dragon God Paladin (which Wotc officials are already trying to equate with Bahamut as they both cover the same territory from different settings). Not only do the cover much the same domains, but both were known to have yellow canaries as travelling companions. I wonder if Fizban’s are secretly Gold Dragons like Bahamut. Hmm.
But this hints at Dragonlance being one of the ‘classic settings’ coming next year from Wotc. Or it may just be a distraction. Time will tell.
GEM DRAGONS MAKE A 5E APPEARANCE!
First and foremost, is the revelation that Gem Dragons were making their 5E debut in this book. This is the least of all the surprises since we received an Unearthed Arcana dealing with Dragonborn options for a Gem Dragon heritage. And, if you ask me, the choices for Gem Dragon (psychic, force, radiant, thunder and necrotic) are loads more flavorful that the ones for Chromatic and Metallic Dragons (Fire, Ice, Poison, Acid, Lightning and Cold).
Not only do you get the breath weapon and resistance to match the type you choose, but you also get Psionic Mind (telepathic one-way communication) and temporary Gem Flight. Now, since the Unearthed Arcana debuted, they may have taken our input and changed it up a bit. But this gives us an idea of what we might be seeing in Fizban’s.
Besides the Dragonborn options, we are guaranteed to get 5E set ups for Gem Dragons as well. This brings, as I stated before, a myriad of flavor options and Dragons to set up as encounters for your party as wells as lair maps and helps.
Known as the most logical and wisest as well as the strongest of the Gem Dragons, Amethyst Dragons, being poor flyers, prefer to burrow. They stick to the Underdark and their breath weapon is a concussive FORCE and prefer to use invisibility to get the drop on their prey. The ancient forms (3-4E) of this dragon could release a telekinetic blast, have Legendary Resistance and invulnerabilies to lightning and fire. But, of course, who knows how this will manifest in 5E.
These dragons were a reclusive, inquisitive type. In fact, Emerald Dragons were more knowledgeable than most sages. They favored studies in history and usually stayed close to civilization either deep underground below it or, its favorite, holding up in a dormant volcanos. Besides the same resistances and telekinetic blast as mentioned above, the Ancient types of these dragons (3-4E) carried an ‘Interference Aura’ that cause all within a certain radius to make saves to keep their concentration on any spells that call for it. Their breath weapon is a wonderous blast of wind striking with Thunder Damage.
Another of the Gem Dragons to prefer the Underdark, Sapphire Dragons make a constant diet of giant spiders there and consider all the evil creatures who reside there to be their enemy. Powerful, ‘Militaristic’ dragons, they are not beyond a good fight. They also are the most territorial and unhospitable of the Gem Dragons. They loved deep, rocky caves as lairs. They were known for a Psionic breath weapon that would disrupt any within range.
These dragons preferred the beach over the dark and why not? Topaz Dragons loved the feel of the wind and sea upon their scales. What’s not to love? However, they were erratic and terribly self-centered. Unless you could convince them that it WAS all about them, they were dangerous to deal with. The older versions touted its breath weapon as a ‘Dehydrating Breath‘, but the 5E UA states that it is Necrotic. Semantics, I’m sure. It sounds like blight and should be Necrotic.
Finally a friendly, easy-to-get-along-with Dragon. Crystal Dragons are playful and curious sort. They enjoyed talking with other creatures, therefor, not as reclusive as the rest. They may be the smallest of all Gem Dragons and tended to roost high on the mountain tops and came into direct conflict with White Dragons. They were known to steal White Dragon eggs in order to raise the younglings in a better situation. Its crystalline hide caused a dazzling effect as light would shine off it. The older versions touted a ‘prismatic breath weapon’ but 5E has shifted it to a RADIANT damage type.
There were also Obsidian and Amber Dragons that may be fleshed out in Fizban’s.
The announcement also claimed we would get the ‘story of the First World’ and the role that Bahamut and Tiamet played in its creation. Sounds like we get solid nail down on the mythology surrounding the two most known dragon gods, but with no mention of Io, are we going to get an adjustment to that tale?
DRAGON OPTIONS FOR YOUR CHARACTER
The next part of the announcement was also not a surprise. Another Unearthed Arcana already introduced the playtest material for THE WAY OF THE ASCENDANT DRAGON for the Monk and the DRAKE WARDEN subclass for the Ranger. So it is safe to say we will get these subclass options fleshed out and ready to play.
MINIONS FOR YOUR DRAGON ENCOUNTERS
And what is a powerful entity without its minions?
We speak, of course of Kobolds; the weakest link of the D&D food chain and a staple in low level adventures for ages. We got a preview also in an Unearthed Arcana. So take a look.
NO SMALL FEAT
Released as playtest material in UA, the feat DRACONIC GIFT bestows several different abilities all according if the gift came from Chromatic, Metallic or Gem Dragons. From Chromatic Dragons comes the ability to bestow magic on a weapon or gain resistances a few times a day at will. Metallic Dragons bless you with a cure wounds ability or protective wings as a reaction a few times a long rest. Gem Dragons bring an ability improvement of +1 to either Intelligence, Wisdom or Charisma PLUS a telekinetic reaction/backlash when you take damage. This is all subject to change so they may have tweaked this a bit to make them game worthy.
NEW STUFF GALORE!
And there will be plenty of stuff we’ve not a chance to peruse in the Unearthed Arcanas. They have promised new tools to craft dragon centric adventures, lair maps and a complete bestiary (which includes details on 20 different kinds of dragons).
I personally want to know what THIS is! It’s way to big just to be a regular dragon turtle. But they may be pulling options on ‘Legendary’ forms of creatures like those found in the Theros campaign guide.
Or it may be a Dragon Turtle God!?
Yes, one of the comments at the announcement was the inclusion of ‘aspects of the dragon gods’! Now THIS gets my attention. I expect to see a nice 5E fleshing out of the draconic pantheon with dragon gods like NULL, ASTILABOR, CHRONEPSIS, HLAL, FALAZURE, AASTERINIAN and LENDYS. All of which I may do an article on before the book gets here to prepare. Oh, so much flavor to be had!
I already have talked about Astilabor, the Hoardmistriss in depth. Can’t wait to do more.
I’m excited for this book, how about you? Let us know in the comments below as well as your suggestions and speculations.