Poll Results: Dragon Extras

Last week I asked the question, "Should OD&D Dragons Require Magic to Hit?". A majority of respondents said "no" by more than a 2-to-1 margin. (Although a few people in the comments said they'd be okay with a magic-missiles-only requirement, as was done in 2E, for example.) Therefore, I'll be following suit, still not having any such requirement in my OED house rules, and also I won't plan to include that in any foreseeable revision to the Book of War mass-warfare rules. I do think, however, that I'd lean towards including the other "extras" of cause-fear and see-invisible that seemed consistent throughout the Chainmail, OD&D (by reference) and AD&D lines. (Not that I'm 100% happy with the way it introduces a morale-check without loss of figures; although I suppose that's got the BOW un-rout rule as precedent for that already. Will need to think on that.) Thanks to all who responded!


  1. Largely the "magical missiles only" shouldn't really be necessary as a rule on its own- intelligent dragons capable of casting 3rd level spells+ have access to Protection From Normal Missiles (Arrows in later editions), so this should be pretty standard for them before any proper battle. Problem solved, no new rule needed.

    If this is really an issue, just give dragons a #/day (3 same as breath weapon?) free castings of the spell- this would allow a wizard to turn Dispel Magic into an offensive spell by letting normal archer units target the now unprotected dragon.

  2. Super heroes, wizards, and I guess you can add clerics w/turn undead, force morale checks without a loss of figures.

  3. Dusk -- Interesting observation, although in both OD&D and AD&D most colored dragons are stuck with spell levels 1-2 at most. In OD&D, a very small number of red dragons would get spells (85%*15%=13%), and they're allowed up to 3rd level. Gold dragons do automatically use spells up to 6th level, so that really would be a tactic for them (and one I skipped over for BOW).

    UWS Guy -- Well, I was talking about Book of War, which doesn't include any of those fear effects. Of course, you're right that they're in Chainmail (but not any other version of the game).