Note: We received a review copy of Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons from Wizards of the Coast in exchange for our honest review.
It’s hard to deny the importance of Dragons within the world of Dungeons & Dragons. I mean, it’s right there in the title, right?
And yet, until now we haven’t had a sourcebook dedicated explicitly to the creation and play of dragon-kind. Thankfully, Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons delivers on this void in a big way, providing a lore-filled sourcebook that’s sure to equip Dungeon Masters with the knowledge they need to more actively incorporate dragons in their regular games.
The 220+ pages within open with a brief introduction to the Elegy for the First World – a poem that outlines the world that Bahamut and Tiamat made, as well as providing a general structure for the world that dragons occupy within the broader history and lore of the world.
Chapter 1 outlines character creation options, with a draconic twist, of course. Monks and Rangers both get an exciting option within, and between the two personally I think the new Drakewarden Ranger subclass is going to be really popular. After all, who wouldn’t want a dragon-pet?!
New draconic feats are introduced as well, one belonging to each of the three major families of dragons: metallic, chromatic, and the nascent gem dragons.
Chapter 2 spotlights the benefits of dragon magic more specifically, as well as related magical items that derive their power from draconic energies. The Ruby Weave Gem is sure to be a crowd-pleaser! There are also some ideas for items that could be kept in various dragon hoards, as well as various draconic “gifts” that can be bestowed on players who fell such powerful beasts.
Chapter 3 is sizable in length, if only because it provides DM’s with a wealth of resources on playing as dragons, as well as laying out a dragons potential followers and their motivations, as well as encounters, adventures and campaigns centered around various legendary dragons. This chapter also introduces the concept of Greatwyrms – a level even higher than Ancient Dragons – and can lay a terrifying foundation for a final conflict or antagonist for even the most epic of fantasy campaigns.
Chapter 4, which describes Lairs, Hoards, as well as mechanics for creating them, is very short. And yet, I found it to be some of the most interesting material within the sourcebook. This direct line and explanation of how a dragon’s hoard directly correlates with its power is fascinating, and added mechanics involving hoard curses, hoard magic and more makes the stories behind a dragon sleeping on a giant pile of gold much more captivating.
Chapter 5 is the largest chapter in the book, and rightly so since it lays out every single dragon type, its personality traits, ideals, adventure hooks, lair maps/details and actions and much more. If you weren’t sure where to start in terms of integrating more dragons into your dungeons, by the time you’ve finished thumbing through chapter 5 you will feel at least 15% more confident, if not 20. That’s my official, scientific estimation.
Finally, chapter 6 provides stat block upon stat block of the various dragons, their followers and other draconic-derived enemies (or friends!).
Outside of the introduction of the Ranger and Monk subclasses, I’d say the new school of dragons (Gem dragons), as well as the lore around Dragonsight are some of the most interesting narrative elements I’ve come across in a new sourcebook in some time. It seems that so often dragons can be rather 1-dimensional in implementation, and by providing DM’s with these resources to more effectively roleplay as these large and powerful creatures, as well as informing them of accurate motivations and goals, it will no doubt elevate the backstories and depth of encounters with dragonkin.
As with previous sourcebook entries, the titular writer of these various points of lore and information, Fizban, offers his humorous take as he muses on how awesome Bahamut is, the redeeming qualities of blue dragons, and more. The narrative interjections are a delight, and really help bring him to life as a character as well.
Overall, a very impressive sourcebook that should be in any DM (or dragon-enthusiast’s) D&D library! I mean, check out this alternative art!
Look forward to its release on October 26th! Until then, always keep an eye on the skies, and may Bahamut protect you.