Shining Dragon Set

by Jay Godden, edited by Isaac Rolfe and Rob Heinsoo, art by Aaron McConnell

Read the introductory post here.

At the beginning of time, the five Great Metallic Wyrms banded together to anoint a mortal as a champion and ambassador to the region that would come to be known as the Dragon Empire. This hero was responsible for laying the groundwork of goodwill between dragons and mortals that would eventually blossom into the grand alliance of knights and dragon mounts that define this region in the 13th Age.

Using the near divine sparks of their own spirits, the fire Great Wyrms each breathed life into some of the most treasured items from their own hordes, imbuing them with their power and some of their own personality. Following a grueling series of rituals, this mortal champion was able to attune to all five, granting them significant power, spiritual insight and political responsibility.

These relics are considered holy by members of the Golden Order, and are highly coveted. Some are wielded to this day by champions of goodness and draconic virtues, working to better the Dragon Empire by strengthening the relationship between the metallics and the humanoids of the Empire. They crusade against evil, and fight against the encroaching influence of the Blue in Drakenhall. At least one item has been co-opted in the 13th Age and is used by agents of evil. Others are sealed behind wards and bars in museums, magical vaults, private historical collections, or dragon hoards (which are often all three at once).

The fate of the Brass, Bronze, Copper, and Silver Great Wyrms may significantly affect the lives of modern-day carriers of the items in this set. In some campaigns the Great Wyrms may still be around, acting as lieutenants and mouthpieces for the Great Gold Wyrm while he is away in the Abyss, meaning that adventurers carrying these items might interact directly with the legends, for advice and advantages that come through icon relationships. Or perhaps the Wyrms were slain by the Wizard King in an attempt to pacify his domain, and the Great Gold Wyrm absorbed their essences, allowing him to ascend to iconhood. In that style of campaign, cults may have formed around the remaining items as the last vestiges of godlike dragons, or their corpses might be lich-like mounts for the Lich King. Or maybe some of the Wyrms still live, and the Great Bronze Wyrm is the Emperor’s personal battlesteed for when things are really serious. In that case, the Emperor’s people might want the items back to reinforce their rule, and the PCs may be caught between good intentions and high politics. 

Wielding a piece from the Shining Dragon Set places an adventurer apart, and they will have a great deal to live up to. The weight of their responsibilities should be great, and they may be called away from their own quests and interests to act as a mediator in Dragon Courts, decide the fates of criminals, or dispense justice in the name of the Wyrms.

Set bonus: Gain X uses per day of the Draconic’s Breath Weapon racial ability. Choose from lightning, acid, fire, and cold damage when you use the power.

[RH: I’ve put a couple updated notes from the current 2E playtest in brackets.]

Adventurer Tier:

Brass Gorget

Necklace Chakra, +1 to saves when you have 10 hp or fewer; [[2E: +1 to saves when you have hp equal to or lower than 3 x your level, up from 2 x your level in first draft]]

Ability (Recharge 11+, Quick Action): make an attack using the highest of your Intelligence or Charisma vs MD of a nearby enemy. On a hit, the effect depends on what conditions the target is suffering from. Misses have no effect. If they are dazed, they become weakened instead, with the same save ends as the original condition. If they are weakened, they become stunned, with the same save ends as the original condition. If they are stunned, they become confused, with the same save ends as the original condition. If they are confused, the confusion becomes save ends. If they are suffering from none of these conditions, they are dazed (save ends). Quirk: Hoards paradoxes and oxymorons. [Quip: “Bless you!”]


Champion Tier:

Wings of the Bronze

Cloak Chakra, +2 PD

Ability (Recharge 16+, Move Action): You pop free from all engaged enemies and can fly anywhere nearby. Deal lightning damage equal to your level to all enemies you start or end your movement Engaged with, and to all allies you start or end your turn Next To. Double this damage against targets that are vulnerable to lightning. Quirk: Rushes headfirst into danger. [Quip: “Avant!”]


Copper’s Needle

One-handed weapon, +2 to attacks and damage while using this weapon

Ability (Recharge 11+, Free Action): When an enemy moves to engage you, even if this weapon is sheathed you can make an opportunity attack against them. On a hit, the target is also vulnerable to lightning (save ends). Quirk: Speaks riddles during battle, sparing enemies that can answer them in the pressure of combat.


Epic Tier:

Silvered Helm

Head Chakra, +3 MD

Ability (Free Action): Once per day, after hitting with the Draconic’s Breath Weapon, you can choose to deal no damage and stun the enemy until the end of their next turn. Quirk: Likes to connect with the common folk by blowing elaborate smoke rings.


Scales of the Gold

Light or heavy armour, +3 AC

Ability (Daily, Free Action): You can use this magic item power even when you are usually unable to take actions. End all conditions currently affecting you except ongoing damage. Quirk: Unshakable but haughty convictions on matters of philosophy, ethics, politics, and religion. [Quip: “This is powerrrr!”]

13th Age combines the best parts of traditional d20-rolling fantasy gaming with new story-focused rules, designed so you can run the kind of game you most want to play with your group. 13th Age gives you all the tools you need to make unique characters who are immediately embedded in the setting in important ways; quickly prepare adventures based on the PCs’ backgrounds and goals; create your own monsters; fight exciting battles; and focus on what’s always been cool and fun about fantasy adventure gaming. Purchase 13th Age in print and PDF at the Pelgrane Shop.

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