Worldbuilding Power: Dragons
Use iconic monsters in character development, worldbuilding, and adventures!
Dragons exist in folklore as far back as ancient Mesopotamia. Massive, serpent-like creatures can be found in the legends and mythologies of Egypt, Greece, and Northern Europe. In Western cultures, the image of the fearsome, fire-breathing dragon first appeared in the Middle Ages, an amalgam of the various traditions from around the world. They became representative of an insurmountable task, a quest to be undertaken by the greatest heroes. To defeat a dragon means to survive their ravenous appetite, and to claim their unimaginable treasure hoard. It’s no small wonder that these creatures have become a staple of fantasy literature and tabletop roleplaying games.
It’s almost a requirement that dragons be part of your fantasy worldbuilding. In many ways they are a trope as essential as spellcasting. Because they are so fundamental to the genre, just throwing them into your setting haphazardly feels inappropriate. Their existence should connect to cultural beliefs about reality, cosmology, and even the nature of good and evil. Beyond being a hardcore opponent to overcome in combat, the existence of dragons should serve to validate assumptions about everything, from the facts of the setting’s history to the nature of magic itself.
In this book, we’ll show you how to utilize these iconic monsters in your worldbuilding endeavors. You’ll see how they can influence character, setting, and story elements. By the end, you’ll understand how to make dragons into an essential, useful, and entertaining part of your campaign.