Draconic Frenzy Dragon vs. Spellcaster Dragon


Advice


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Polling the community for this one. What has been a more satisfying encounter? A dragon with Draconic Frenzy/Momentum, or a Dragon with spell-casting? I'm looking for input from players and GM's on this one, even if you haven't been through both as yet I'll still be happy to hear how your dragon encounter went.


Nintendogeek01 wrote:
Polling the community for this one. What has been a more satisfying encounter? A dragon with Draconic Frenzy/Momentum, or a Dragon with spell-casting? I'm looking for input from players and GM's on this one, even if you haven't been through both as yet I'll still be happy to hear how your dragon encounter went.

I'd say it depends on the dragon, and how hard you want to work for the encounter. Spells fit the personality of some dragons much more than others. I will say casting dragons are nasty, especially with haste. They are also able to stay high above the party and rain down attacks, which can be pretty brutal if your players rely on melee. Even a Fly spell will have trouble catching up with the insane speed of a dragon.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Well, do you want a brute or a manipulator?

The more melee oriented approach also makes it more likely that you will have trouble extracting the dragon from harm's way should you want to have it flee.

I think either approach could be equally engaging. The difference isn’t the type you chose but the environment and how you play it.

Dragons are inherently mobile creatures. If you have it fly in, then stand toe to toe with the party trading blows, it will be unsatisfactory whether it can cast spells or not.

Instead, try having multiple elevations available, and perhaps some environmental hazards. Lava flows or pools of acid, as the case may be... the dragon can now move about the room, often with its 3rd action, creating interesting puzzles for the party to solve as they must reposition, use ranged attacks, and use their own spells creatively to nail down the dragon.

That, to me, is what makes a dragon fight interesting.


I think the spell dragon makes for a better boss or mastermind.
They have the breadth and breath, both while staying aloft.
Or they may use their trickery to gain an advantage.

The draconic frenzy dragon might be better for more savage dragons or when a beast needs to be unleashed. These might be mounts or a boss's pet. Still major threats, but perhaps with allies which add breadth.

I think the chromatic dragons separate along these lines, with the weaker tending to fit the savage mold and the stronger more suited for the boss fight. Yet using either frenzy or spells each could fill either role in a given context.

If the party knows they'll be facing a dragon, I'd likely go with a caster so it has the breadth to overcome their preparation (if they're going to have any).

And much of this depends on party composition & level too.

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