Talk to me about brine dragons


Advice


Primal dragons, lawful neutral, native to the Elemental Plane of Water. "Although not inherently evil, brine dragons have little patience for kindness and philanthropy. As they age, they grow more and more opinionated and obsessed with power — by adult age, a brine dragon counts itself a failure if it doesn’t rule over a collection of “lesser beings” such as humans, merfolk, locathah, or even sahuagin."

And that's about it. Bestiary 2 gave us the primal dragons, and they *looked* cool as hell, but each one came with just a sentence or two of description squeezed at the end of the long, complex stat blocks.

Well: I'm toying with the idea of using a brine dragon or two, and I'm wondering if anyone has more information about them. Has anyone gone into more detail in published / canon stuff? Have they popped up in any of the APs? Failing that, does anyone have any suggestions about how to use them? I'm looking for a CR 8-9 marine surface encounter; that would be a young brine dragon (CR 7) with about CR 5-6 worth of mooks, which I suppose could be "humans, merfolk, locathah, or even sahuagin." Failing /that/, suggestions for a substitute creature filling the same niche (draconic, not evil but greedy for treasure and high-handed) are welcome.

Thanks in advance,

Doug M.

Dark Archive

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I'm not aware of anything official, but I can make stuff up;

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Off of the plane of water, I could see their lawfulness philosophically tied to the relentless dependability of the tides. They see the world and all it's natural forces, even those as vast and beyond human control or reason as the ocean, as subject to *rules* and following the patterns set for them. As they grow, they want to be the one *making* those rules, and begin to see everything as a game of those who make the rules, and those who are following rules set down by someone else, and their egos will not tolerate the idea of themselves being counted among the latter...

And so they become micromanaging tyrants, who flip out if anything is out of place, or one of their lessers forgets their place. (And *everyone* is a 'lesser.') They might rationalize that it's in the best interest of the surrounding races to submit to their (literally) 'draconic' rules, because, clearly the dragon has a grander vision of what they can accomplish with the tiny lives they would otherwise just be 'wasting.'

Of course, they want their little fiefdom's to be self-sufficient, and for nobody else to be 'poaching' their resources, so all sorts of things set them off, like fishermen from a neighboring village fishing in the waters used to support *their* village, or the local shrine to Cayden Cailean encouraging the youth to wander off and adventure, taking good potential workers away from the dragon's territory, or a bandits raiding 'their' villages outlying farms and therefore decreasing the amount of resources available to 'their' subjects.

At first, it might even seem cool, that a dragon is protecting your village, but when the price turns out to be that it wants to run your lives, which it insists it can do so much better than you ever could, things get bleaker...


Nice. I think this is edging up to the boundary of lawful evil, but an urge to dominate "for your own good" can still fit under LN.

Brine dragon plot seeds anyone? Here's one offhand: a brine dragon guards a portal to the Elemental Plane of Water. It allows passage -- for a toll. For a larger toll, it may warn you about hazards on the other side.

Doug M.


I don't have the books on me at the moment (I can check tomorrow), but I believe there's a Brine Dragon in:

Spoiler:
Plunder and Peril, Book 2. Plunder and peril is a short adventure for characters level 4-6. It can be a stand-alone adventure or it can substitute for a part of Skulls and Shackles. Book 2 is supposed to be for 5th level characters, and the young adult dragon is a CR: 11 encounter that the PCs are strongly encouraged to approach diplomatically. From memory it's a Brine Dragon.


Douglas Muir 406 wrote:

Nice. I think this is edging up to the boundary of lawful evil, but an urge to dominate "for your own good" can still fit under LN.

Brine dragon plot seeds anyone? Here's one offhand: a brine dragon guards a portal to the Elemental Plane of Water. It allows passage -- for a toll. For a larger toll, it may warn you about hazards on the other side.

Doug M.

Yeah, "little patience for kindness and philanthropy" sounds perfect for running an authoritarian government. "No, you cannot be a baker. You're a woodcutter. It better suits your strengths, and provides the most good to the community."

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