Tome Unleashed: Drakon

Tome Unleashed: Drakon

Alternate Traits and Actions

The following changes allow GMs to alter a drakon without modifying its challenge rating.

Swallow. The drakon makes a bite attack against a Medium or smaller target it is grappling. If the attack hits, the target is swallowed, and the grapple ends. While swallowed, the target is blinded and restrained, it has total cover against attacks and effects outside the drakon, and it takes 14 (4d6) acid damage at the start of each of the drakon’s turns. The drakon can have only one creature swallowed at a time. If the drakon takes 20 damage or more on a single turn from the swallowed creature, the drakon must succeed on a DC 13 Constitution saving throw at the end of that turn or regurgitate the creature, which falls prone in a space within 10 feet of the drakon. If the drakon dies, the target is no longer restrained by it and can escape from the drakon using 10 feet of movement, exiting prone.

The drakon loses its Multiattack. It also modifies its bite attack, as follows.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target, Hit: 11 (2d6 + 4) piercing damage plus 10 (4d4) acid damage, and the target is grappled (escape DC 13). Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained, and the drakon can’t bite another target.

Lava Drakons

These variant drakons dwell in volcanic regions. Like their coastal cousins, they rarely travel beyond the mountain ranges they call home.

Lava drakons have damage resistance to fire and lose their resistance to acid. Their bite deals fire damage instead of acid damage (if the drakon has the Swallow attack listed above, a swallowed target takes fire damage instead of acid damage). In addition, they lose their swimming speed and gain a climbing speed of 40 feet. Finally, they lose their Dissolving Gaze trait and Acid Breath action and gain the Smoldering Gaze trait and Fire Breath action below.

Smoldering Gaze. When a creature that can see the drakon’s eyes starts its turn within 30 feet of the drakon, the drakon can force it to make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw if the drakon isn’t incapacitated and can see the creature. On a failed saving throw, the creature takes 3 (1d6) fire damage, its hit point maximum is reduced by an amount equal to the fire damage it takes (which ends after a long rest), and it’s poisoned until the end of its next turn. Unless surprised, a creature can avert its eyes at the start of its turn. If the creature does so, it can’t see the drakon until the start of its next turn, when it chooses again whether to avert its eyes. If the creature looks at the drakon before then, it must immediately make the saving throw.

Fire Breath (Recharge 5–6). The drakon exhales smoky embers in a 15-foot cone. Each creature in the area must make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw, taking 28 (8d6) fire damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one.

New Magic Items and Spells

The following magic item and spells are inspired by the drakon.

Drakon Maw Helm

Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)

This helmet is shaped like a drakon’s maw, covering both the back of your head and your face without impeding your vision. The helm has 3 charges and regains 1d3 expanded charges daily at dawn. While wearing it, you have resistance to acid damage. Additionally, you can use an action and expend 1 charge to breathe a 15-foot cone of acidic vapors. Each creature in the area must make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw, taking 8d6 acid damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one.

Gaze of Dissolution

2nd-level transmutation (warlock, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Self
Components: V, S, M (a drakon’s eye)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

Your eyes weep a foul-smelling liquid, and your irises turn green. If a creature that can see your eyes starts its turn within 30 feet of you, you can force the target to make a Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, it takes 1d6 acid damage, its hit point maximum is reduced for 1 hour by an amount equal to the acid damage it takes, and it becomes paralyzed until the start of its next turn. A creature can avert its eyes at the start of its turn to avoid the saving throw. If it does so, it can’t see you until the start of its next turn, when it can avert its eyes again. If the creature looks at you in the meantime, it must immediately make the save.

Imbue with Acid

3rd-level transmutation (sorcerer, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Touch
Components: V, S, M (vial of drakon acid)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

You touch a willing creature to add an acidic secretion to one of its natural weapons or its unarmed strike. The target deals an additional 4d4 acid damage with the chosen attack.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 4th level or higher, the damage increases by 1d4 for every slot level above 3rd.

Drakon Adventure Hooks

  • A migrating pair of drakons infringe upon the coastal lair of a young sea dragon (see Tome of Beasts). The dragon does not wish to confront the drakons directly, so it makes nighttime raids on nearby settlements to encourage others to kill the beasts on its behalf. The dragon leaves “evidence” about the drakons’ involvement in the attacks and clues leading to the creatures’ lair.
  • An arcane researcher wishes to obtain a pair of drakon eyes to study their strange, dissolutive properties. The researcher promises a considerable reward for adventurers who can return with the eyes within 24 hours of slaying the beast. The researcher plans to sell the secrets of the drakon eyes to a tyrannical mage for a much larger sum.

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Tome Unleashed is going back to where it all began, with Tome of Beasts. If you’ve got a favorite from that book, please let me know in the comments or elsewhere in the Kobold warrens, and I’ll make sure to add it to the queue.

The Tome Unleashed series fleshes out monsters from the Tome of Beasts, giving GMs ways to modify the existing monsters to surprise well-prepared players or to introduce monsters to a campaign.

1 thought on “Tome Unleashed: Drakon”

  1. This is some wonderful material. I am thinking about using some of this in my campaign. Though I am curious about Gaze of Dissolution. Is the hit point maximum reduction meant to stack on subsequent failed saves, or will the previous reduction be overwritten by the new one every time you roll damage for the spell?

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