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The predominating winged figure in the center is a Bozak draconian, Kang.

Draconians are a fictional species in the Dragonlance setting of novels and role-playing games. Draconians are humanoids created from corrupting a Good-Aligned Dragon's egg. Each race of draconians varies according to which egg it is spawned from.

Contents

Publication history

Draconians first appeared as "dragonmen" as part of the first edition of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game for the Dragonlance setting in the original series of Dragonlance modules, beginning with Dragons of Despair (1984). They subsequently appeared in Dragonlance Adventures (1987).

Draconians appeared in the second edition in the Monstrous Compendium Dragonlance Appendix (1990), and the Tales of the Lance boxed set (1992).[1]

Draconians were further detailed in third edition in Dragon 339 (January 2006).[2]

Draconians appeared in fourth edition in Draconomicon: Metallic Dragons (2009), including the Adamaaz, Ferak, and Kobaaz.

History

Draconians are created through the use of a powerful and undetailed spell, the exact workings of which are unknown; all is known is that the process requires the spittle of a Chromatic Dragon, an evil Arcane spellcaster and a Cleric of Takhisis (who cast the spell in tandem) and the egg of a Metallic Dragon. This ritual causes the subject egg to produce a number of draconian hatchlings dependent upon the type of egg. A Brass Dragon's egg can produce as many as twenty draconians, whilst a Gold Dragon's egg will only yield two draconians at most. This process was first performed on bronze dragon eggs.

Draconians were created to serve as specialists or shock troops in the Dark Queen's army. They were supposed to be more predictable than humans, and more tractable than ogres or goblins. Even though both male and female draconians were created at the same time, the existence of the female draconians was concealed.

There are many types of draconians, depending on the type of metallic dragon egg that was corrupted to produce them. Baaz were created from brass dragon eggs, Bozaks from bronze, Kapaks from copper, Sivaks from silver, and Auraks from gold. Draconians are reptilian creatures most of which have small wings on their backs. Fighting them is difficult due to their large size, natural toughness, and magical abilities, including magical death throes that vary depending on the type of draconian killed. Some draconians turn to stone; others dissolve into pools of acid (releasing clouds of poisonous fumes); still others are consumed by magical flames. They have green blood, as it is based in copper rather than the iron-based red blood of most other species.[3]

Until the Chaos War, many believed draconians to be sexless. However, it was known by at least one man (Dracart) that female dragon eggs yielded female draconians. Indeed, Dracart wished to destroy all the female dragon eggs in order to prevent a future rebellion by the draconians. Fortunately, Dracart was prevented from destroying the eggs by Takhisis, the Queen of Darkness. Instead, she ordered the eggs placed in suspended animation and hidden in a vault of her temple in Neraka, perhaps foreseeing a day when they might be needed. Dark dwarves (Theiwar and/or Daergar) raided the temple during the last days of the War of the Lance and spirited the eggs away to the underhalls of Thorbardin, where they rested for twenty years.

When the Whitestone Forces started to mount a serious offensive, Takhisis ordered Dracart to develop a more efficient method of creating draconians. As a result, Dracart created the Heart of Dracart. The Heart of Dracart allowed for the creation of hundreds of new draconians from an existing draconian, essentially splitting its soul into many and killing the original draconian in the process. These draconian copies were not as smart, powerful, or long-lived; they were also sterile. But they were docile, obedient, and able to fight. Fortunately, Dracart never got to use his artifact. It was stolen by Maranta, an Aurak draconian who sought to prevent the draconians from becoming a mindless slave race. Once the Heart was in his possession, Maranta wished to destroy it, but could not bring himself to do so. As time passed and draconians began to age and die, Maranta feared for the future of the draconian race. Since there were no females to repopulate with, Maranta began to contemplate using the Heart of Dracart as a way to continue his species in some form (a plan that ultimately would have failed, because the draconian "clones" created by the Heart of Dracart were short-lived and unable to breed with the aforementioned females).

Meanwhile, a Bozak draconian engineer named Kang happened upon the female dragon eggs that Takhisis had hidden. After allowing them to hatch Kang discovered that the eggs yielded female draconians. Since the existence of the female draconians solved the survivability problems the draconian race, Kang decided to set out to find a homeland for his people.

While searching for a new homeland, Kang encountered Maranta. Upon finding out about Maranta's intention to use the Heart of Dracart, Kang was forced to kill Maranta and destroy the artifact. Kang then led his draconians, as well as Maranta's surviving draconians, to Teyr, an abandoned Dwarven city. The city of Teyr became the capital of a new draconian homeland.

Draconian characteristics

Historically there have been five distinct species of draconian, created from the eggs of the five species of metallic (good) dragons. The races are: Aurak (gold), Baaz (brass), Bozak (bronze), Kapak (copper), and Sivak (silver). For fourth edition, Draconomicon: Metallic Dragons introduced the Adamaaz (adamantine), Ferak (iron), and Kobaaz (cobalt) draconians. All draconians have some form of magic resistance and have different death throes. Also, all draconians (except Auraks) have wings, but only the Sivak can truly fly. Bozaks, Kapaks, and Baaz draconians can use their wings only to glide, a useful ability that allows them to fall safely from any height (provided their wings are unimpeded) and act as paratroopers by jumping into the fray from above (often from surrounding cliffs, the backs of allied dragons, or from flying citadels). It is mentioned several times in The Doom Brigade and Draconian Measures that draconians are poikilothermic, meaning that their body temperature adapts to their surroundings (becoming cooler in the rain or underground, thus making them effectively invisible to infrared detection such as "elvensight"). This makes them simultaneously vulnerable to extremes of temperature (such as the heat of a fire dragon's lair).

Baaz Draconian

Baaz Draconians come from the eggs of brass dragons and are the smallest and most common type of draconian. Baaz typically serve as soldiers, and are historically mistreated by other draconian breeds (though the arrival of female Baaz draconians is beginning to change this, female Baaz being superb organizers by nature). They do not possess any magical powers. When a Baaz is killed, its body turns into stone, often trapping the weapon used to kill it. After a short time passes, the stone body will crumble on its own and the trapped weapon will then be released, unharmed.

Kapak Draconian

Kapak Draconians come from the eggs of copper dragons. They make good assassins and thieves, as they can coat their weapons with a form of poison, which paralyzes a victim. Kapaks are larger than Baaz draconians (though smaller than Sivaks) and powerfully muscled; they tend to enjoy battle, but they are not particularly perceptive or creative. When a Kapak is killed, it immediately dissolves into a pool of acid and all equipment it carried becomes useless. The saliva of female Kapaks is not poisonous; instead, it has healing properties.

Bozak Draconian

Bozak Draconians come from the eggs of bronze dragons. They are skilled magic users and are typically evil clerics. They take pride in knowing a variety of spells, and Bozaks are also good with languages (during his twenty-year stay in the Kharolis mountains, Kang picked up a large working vocabulary in Dwarven, while Slith, Kang's Sivak second-in-command, learned very little Dwarven in the equivalent span of time). Bozaks are physically about the same size as Kapak draconians, but tend to be more intelligent; nevertheless, they are also proficient melee combatants and are natural tacticians and strategists. When a Bozak is killed, its scales shrivel and its bones are revealed; the bones then explode.

Sivak Draconian

Sivak Draconians come from the eggs of silver dragons and are the largest of all draconians, ranging from seven to nine feet in height. They are cunning, powerful warriors; they are also the only draconian capable of true flight. Male Sivaks possess a shape-shifting ability which allows them to take the form of anyone they kill (provided their victim is a humanoid the same size as the Sivak or smaller). This ability affects voice and appearance only (it does not supply the Sivak with the memories of his victim), and is contingent upon the acceptance of the illusion by those around him. If the Sivak gives those around him cause to doubt the illusion, the ability fails (although some Sivaks, most notable Slith, were able to assume the shape of enemies they only knocked out or incapacitated, and the form was held regardless of whether or not it was "accepted"). This typically allows male Sivaks to serve as spies, assassins, saboteurs, and psychological warfare agents. When a male Sivak is killed, one of two things can happen depending on his killer. If the killer is a humanoid as large as the Sivak or smaller, the Sivak will shape-shift into the form of his killer. This is sometimes referred to as a Sivak's "Death Shape." The "Death Shape" lasts for three days, after which the draconian's body dissolves into soot; this ability can serve to decrease the morale of enemy forces by creating the illusion of a battlefield littered with the corpses of fallen "comrades." If the killer is larger than he is or non-humanoid, the Sivak simply bursts into flames. Female Sivaks, on the other hand, do not have any shape-shifting abilities. Instead, they can blend with their surroundings at will, making them much harder to spot under all circumstances and practically impossible to see at night or in deep shadows. When killed, female Sivaks burst into flame.

Aurak Draconian

Aurak Draconians come from the eggs of gold dragons and are the greatest and rarest of the draconians. They are typically mages and possess many magical abilities (more than a Bozak). These draconians become more lethal in death than they were in life. When killed they burst into green flames and become berserker like. After a certain amount of time, or if they are physically incapacitated (whichever comes first) the Aurak transforms into a ball of green lightning. When half the time between the first change passes again the Aurak explodes.

Noble Draconians

These were created in an act of desperation toward the end of the War of the Lance. After the good dragons were liberated, Lord Ariakas ordered that the corruption ritual be performed on evil dragons. However, the result was good draconians. Most were destroyed, but a few survive to this day.

Flame Draconians

A form of noble draconians formed from red dragon eggs, these draconians are extremely temperamental and will go into a fiery rage at the slightest provocation. Their breath weapon is so hot they sometimes forge their own weapons with it. They can also cast fireball spells. Incineration is the name of their death process.[4]

Frost Draconians

A form of noble draconians formed from white dragon eggs, these draconians have, like white dragons, a limited intelligence and short tempers. They cannot be harmed by any cold, but are vulnerable to fire. They have a frost breath weapon, and upon death explode into shards of ice.[5]

Lightning Draconians

A form of noble draconians formed from blue dragon eggs, these draconians are noble and are much like paladins, and they also have abilities akin to paladins, fighting always for good and trying to find acceptance from the people. They are very fond of Kiri-Jolith, the god of good war. They explode into lightning when they die.[6]

Vapor Draconians

A form of noble draconians formed from green dragon eggs, these draconians have innate mysticism, or the Power of the Heart. They were able to use this power even before the Chaos War. They turn into a cloud of vapor when they die.[7]

Venom Draconians

A form of noble draconians formed from black dragon eggs, these draconians are much like rogues. They have a poisoned bite, and turn into a pool of acid when slain.[8]

Proto-Draconians

Proto-draconicans are the first attempts to create draconians. Including the traag (precursors to the Baaz) and sesk (precursors to sivaks) draconians. Viewed as failures they were dumped by their creators on the continent of Taladas.

Society and psyche

Nationality

Draconians, being an artificially created race, did not have a language or nation of their own for many years. Rather, they inhabited Neraka, the location of Takhisis' temple, and learned the Native tongue. In recent novels, they inhabit Teyr. Due to their militaristic background, the Draconian city is surrounded by traps, such as falling boulders.

Society

Draconian Society is largely militaristic. Draconians are not given a last name at birth. Rather, they are given a basic name, and then referred to by their military rank. Draconians of the War of the Lance era are inherently evil, given to their corrupt origin. In the current edition of the campaign setting, Draconian characters are still mostly evil, but younger generations are now Neutral, or even good. With Takhisis' death, Draconians are now without a patron god. Because of this, there are very few Draconian priests.

Males and Females

Though the physical differences between male and female draconians are subtle (females have wider hips), they possess more fundamental differences in behavior and abilities. While male Draconians are violent, and prone to drinking, foul language, and crude behavior, females are more dignified, nurturing, and pacifist, although they are known to find crude qualities attractive. A male and female Draconian look mostly alike, but one can only tell the difference by close observation. For example, while Kapak males have poison saliva (as noted by their habit to lick their weapons before use), females have inherent healing abilities. Also, a female is slightly more likely to be neutral or good then a male of the same age.

Racial Tension

Draconians are one of Krynn's most hated races. Prior to the War of the Lance, Baaz Draconians dressed as Clerics to hide their shocking nature until they had a chance to try and steal Goldmoon's Blue Crystal Staff. Even in modern Krynn (during the Age of Mortals), draconians harbor grudges against the other races, and have been known to eat Elves on rare occasions.

References

  1. ^ Johnson, Harold, John Terra, J. Robert King, Wolfgang Baur, Colin McComb, Jean Rabe, Norm Ritchie, Margaret Weis, Tracy Hickman, Jeff Grubb, Doug Niles, and Michael Williams. Tales of the Lance (TSR, 1992)
  2. ^ Banks, Cam. "The Ecology of the Draconian." Dragon #339 (Paizo Publishing, January 2006)
  3. ^ Margaret Weis; Tracy Hickman. "Book 2, volume 1, chapter 7, —Not destined to meet again in this world.". The Annotated Chronicles (1st edition ed.). Wizards of the Coast. pp. 559. ISBN 0-7869-1870-5. http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=products/dlant/887780000. Retrieved 2006-07-01.  
  4. ^ Bestiary of Krynn: Revised. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Margaret Weis Productions. 2006. pp. 25. ISBN 1-931567-29-8.  
  5. ^ Bestiary of Krynn: Revised. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Margaret Weis Productions. 2006. pp. 26. ISBN 1-931567-29-8.  
  6. ^ Bestiary of Krynn: Revised. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Margaret Weis Productions. 2006. pp. 27. ISBN 1-931567-29-8.  
  7. ^ Bestiary of Krynn: Revised. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Margaret Weis Productions. 2006. pp. 28. ISBN 1-931567-29-8.  
  8. ^ Bestiary of Krynn: Revised. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Margaret Weis Productions. 2006. pp. 29. ISBN 1-931567-29-8.  

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