Alternate Traits and Actions
The following changes allow GMs to alter an unhatched without modifying its challenge rating.
Draconic Hatred. The unhatched harbors intense hatred for the draconic parent(s) that left it unprotected. The unhatched has advantage on attacks against dragons and creatures with a draconic heritage.
The unhatched loses its Hatred trait.
Draconic Magic Resistance. As a bonus action, the unhatched gives itself advantage on its next saving throw against spells or other magical effects originating from a dragon or creatures with a draconic heritage.
This trait replaces the unhatched’s Minor Magic Resistance trait.
Dragon Breath. The unhatched exhales elemental and necrotic infused breath based on the type of egg from which it was supposed to hatch. Each creature in the listed area must make a DC 14 Dexterity saving throw, taking the listed damage plus 6 (1d12) necrotic damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one. A dragon or creature with a draconic heritage takes 16 (3d10) necrotic damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one:
- Black or Copper: 30-foot line that is 5 feet wide, 11 (2d10) acid damage
- Blue or Bronze: 30-foot line that is 5 feet wide, 11 (2d10) lightning damage
- Green: 30-foot cone, 11 (2d10) poison damage
- Red, Brass, or Gold: 30-foot cone, 11 (2d10) fire damage
- White or Silver: 30-foot cone, 11 (2d10) cold damage
Horrifying Visage. Each non-undead creature within 60 feet of the unhatched that can see it must succeed on a DC 14 Wisdom saving throw or be frightened for 1 minute. A dragon or creature with a draconic heritage has disadvantage on this saving throw. A frightened creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of its turns, ending the frightened condition on itself on a success. If a target’s saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the target is immune to the unhatched’s Horrifying Visage for the next 24 hours.
The unhatched’s Desiccating Breath action (or Dragon Breath action, if that has replaced Desiccating Breath) has Recharge 6.
Necromantic Familiar. The unhatched acts as a familiar to a powerful undead creature. It can communicate with its master while it is within 100 feet of its master. As an action, the unhatched’s master can see through its eye and hear what it hears until the start of the master’s next turn. The master gains the benefits of the unhatched’s darkvision, but the master is deaf and blind with regard to the master’s senses. The unhatched can deliver a spell its master casts with a range of touch as if it had cast the spell. It must be within 100 feet of its master, and it must use its reaction to deliver the spell when the master casts it. If the spell requires an attack roll, apply the master’s attack modifier for the roll.
The unhatched loses its Hatred trait.
Residual Immunities. The unhatched retains the immunity inherent to the type of dragon it was meant to hatch as. Its immunity depends on the type of dragon egg:
- Black or Copper: acid
- Blue or Bronze: lightning
- Green: poison
- Red, Brass, or Gold: fire
- White or Silver: cold
If the unhatched is not from a green dragon egg, it loses its damage immunity to poison.
New Magic Items and Spells
The following magic items and spell are inspired by abilities possessed by a unhatched.
Dust of Desiccation
Wondrous item, rare
This small packet contains soot-like dust. There is enough of it for one use. When you use an action to blow the choking dust from your palm, all creatures in a 30-foot cone must make a DC 14 Dexterity saving throw, taking 16 (3d10) necrotic damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one. A creature that fails this save can’t speak until the end of its next turn.
Alternatively, you can use an action to throw the dust into the air, affecting yourself and all creatures within 30 feet of you with the dust.
Staff of the Unhatched
Staff, uncommon (requires attunement by a sorcerer, warlock, or wizard)
This staff carved from a burnt ash tree is topped with an unhatched’s skull. The staff has 10 charges. It can be wielded as a magic quarterstaff. When you hit with a melee attack using it, you can expend 1 charge, and the target takes an extra 1d8 necrotic damage.
While holding the staff, you can use an action to expend 1 or more of its charges to cast one of the following spells from it, using your spell save DC: bane (2 charges), chill touch (1 charge), or minor illusion (1 charge).
The staff regains 1d6 + 4 expended charges daily at dusk. If you expend the last charge, roll a d20. On a 1, the staff crumbles to dust and is destroyed.
1st-level enchantment (sorcerer, warlock, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 reaction, which you take in response to a creature that healed, restored, strengthened, or otherwise aided another creature
Range: 30 feet
Components: V, S, M (a claw from an unhatched)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute
A willing creature you designate within range has advantage on attacks against the target that triggered this spell. The designated creature benefits from this spell for the spell’s duration or until it successfully hits the target, whichever occurs first.
At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 2nd level or higher, you can designate one additional creature for each slot level above 1st.
Unhatched Adventure Hooks
- A kobold spirited away a red dragon egg and sold it to a necromancer. An envoy to one of the red dragon parents searches for capable adventurers to rescue the egg before the necromancer can transform the unborn dragon into an unhatched. The envoy promises riches from the dragon’s hoard or perhaps more importantly a cessation of hostility by the red dragon for at least ten years as a reward. If the adventurers can find and capture or kill the thief, they receive additional rewards.
- An archeological team discovered the entrance to a forgotten city belonging to an ancient civilization. A coterie of seven unhatched have claimed the city for themselves, so they can recover the civilization’s arcane knowledge. The team requires a powerful group to remove the unhatched, so it can continue its exploration.
If you have any requests for monsters from the Creature Codex for future installments, please let me know in the comments or elsewhere in the Kobold warrens, and I’ll make sure to add them to the queue.
The Expanding Codex series fleshes out monsters from the Creature Codex, giving GMs ways to modify the existing monsters to surprise well-prepared players or to introduce monsters to a campaign.