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Nerdarchy > Dungeons & Dragons  > Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition| Let’s Talk Uncommon Races The D&D Dragonborn

Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition| Let’s Talk Uncommon Races The D&D Dragonborn

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D&D Dragonborn D&D Dragonborn are back baby.

They first appeared a standard player character race with the release of 4th edition Dungeons and Dragons. Now this was a fairly polarizing effect actually one of many from that edition.

Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition has brought the dragonborn back along with the tiefling. To be honest with you I’ve kind meh on the dragonborn as a player character race, but for the purpose of this article I’m going to do my best to remain objective.

Now I do believe a form of the dragonborn  harkens back to editions before 5th edition D&D or even 4th edition D&D. The draconians appeared in the war of the lance series known as the Chronicles Trilogy. I would hazard to say these were D&D’s original dragonmen.

Oddly enough I loved draconians when they first appeared, but don’t share that same feeling to their predecessors. Which I myself even find a little odd. Perhaps I just enjoyed the appearance and lore behind the draconians more.

OK dungeons and dragons I think I know what it is that bothers me about the D&D dragonborn, dragon boobs. I don’t like the femalization of the reptilian race, it kind of breaks my head and doesn’t make any sense to boot.

I understand why they did it I just don’t think it was necessary. We could still play our game if one of the races lacked breast I assure you.

Moving on,

Dragonborn 5th Edition D&D Video

The Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition Dragonborn offer up some interesting play options.

Both from a mechanical and role-playing point of view dragonborn offer up some interesting choices. They make natural paladins, as well as effective bards, fighters, barbarians, sorcerers, and warlocks. Heck they’d even make a great cleric of a war god. So they are very versatile in their class selection.

As for backgrounds I think noble, outlander, soldier, acolyte, criminal, sage, and sailor would all make very interesting choices.

DragonbornPHBAll of that being said feel free to play against type them with a rogue, druid, or wizard for that matter. Their natural resistance to one of the elements and their ability to use said element as a breathe weapon only add to their arsenal.

The fact that start out with an area affect damage effective is very helpful it also scales as the go up in level. It’s available fairly often as well short or long rest recharges it.

Dragonborn don’t get much in the way of racial traits, but I guess their resistance and breathe weapon make up for it.

From a role-playing perspective you could have their very breathe weapon define them in the sense of their heritage. Are they descendants of good or evil dragons? This cause a bias when others view them?

Things like a noble paladin descendant from a red dragon who always gets judged harshly or the golden scaled criminal rogue that everyone trust off hand to their ultimate dismay.

I see a lot of opportunities for role-playing either by playing against type or with it. Gosh darn it writing this article may have changed my mind as think of the interesting possibilities for a dragonborn player character. Even so you’ll never get me on board for the dragon boobs.


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david friant

My name is Dave Friant I've been gaming off and on for over 27 years. But here is the thing it's always been a part of my life I've kept secret and hidden away. I've always been ashamed of the stigma that gaming and my other nerdy and geeky pursuits summon forth. Recently I decided screw it! This is who I am the world be damned. From now on I'm gonna be a geek, nerd, or however folks want to judge me and just enjoy life. Currently one of my greatest joys is introducing my 13 yr old son to table top RPG's.


  • Stephen Mitchell
    July 2, 2015 at 7:25 pm

    Rolled up a Dragonborn Barbarian on Wednesday. Excited to use him this weekend!

    • Nathan Riggins
      July 4, 2015 at 12:04 am

      Alright! The Dragonborn are really cool, good luck and have fun

  • Joe
    February 13, 2017 at 12:47 am

    Dragons aren’t reptiles

  • Dan
    May 28, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    I don’t understand your problem with the Dragonborn Females having breasts.

    • Joshua Brickley
      May 28, 2017 at 8:22 pm

      This is a hard one. On one hand, adding breasts may be there to sexualize dragonborn for men, but, on the other hand, adding breasts can be something that allows women to better connect with their character. In my (now old) group, one of my players specifically wanted her dragonborn to have, and I quote, “big dragon titties.” It was important for her to feel like the dragonborn reflected her gender and her sexualized identity. This isn’t to say that the breasts meant that she wanted her character to be sexualized. Far from it. She chose the dragonborn specifically because she wanted the biggest, scariest, most badass race out there, and she chose to be an Oath of Vengeance Paladin, to be super strong. She viewed her character to be a reflection of her feminine strength, and having breasts was something that she felt was a very important part of that.

      Modern feminism (especially third-wave feminism) embraces the idea that women choose, for themselves, what it means to be a woman. For some, that means rejecting cultural pressures, while others choose to embrace their sexuality, or at least a combination of the two (granted we’re talking only this particular issue). So, one woman may want to have her dragonborn have breasts, where another may look at breasts on a dragonborn and see it as gratuitous sexism, and both views are equally valid outlooks on life.

      Frankly, in my opinion, as a man, I feel we need to learn to step back and afford women to be who or what they want to be. Talking about breasts isn’t even important for the game. If a single player wants to make a point of it to make a connection with their character, or it’s something that’s an important facet of the character, that’s one thing.

      As an example, the tabaxi druid (Tree Shadow) that I made for our adventure (Arbor Jade), I imagined as being very sexual, but that’s because I looked at her from the stance of a cat that’s very physical, and very pleasure-seeking, which I based the concept off one of my own cats (except the sexual part). If I were to play as another female tabaxi, I likely wouldn’t sexualize her. Not because I look at it from a negative standpoint, but because my inspiration for her character would likely be different. Maybe based on my other cat that likes to be nearby, and is very dependent, but doesn’t like to be touched all the time. She sits on the couch with me all the time, but often outside of arm’s reach.

      • Joshua Brickley
        May 29, 2017 at 2:07 pm

        You’re absolutely. I make absolutely no arguments against that point. Scientifically speaking, it doesn’t make sense. Breasts on tabaxi don’t make sense from an an evolutionary standpoint, either, being that cats don’t have breasts, and they feed from nipples on their torso. Besides, little about D&D has logical rules (even under the assumption that the world works that way), so it doesn’t matter. A very large portion of what’s in there is to ensure the mechanics are effectively balanced, and not based on logic. That’s why magic users are limited in their spellcasting longevity, but combat fighters can swing or shoot a weapon all day without any kind of fatigue. What matters is why we do what we do. With dragonborn, if including breasts are there to objectify sexuality, then I agree that it shouldn’t be included. If it’s there as a means of making a personal connection with the character, or it would otherwise be an important element of the character, then I say it’s fine to allow it. Intent matters, and that intent will be visible when put in action.

  • Linda Simpson
    November 25, 2017 at 11:12 am

    Hey Dave, when I met my husband his frist question was do I game?? My response was… WTH is that? Well we began a relationship and 19 years later we are still gaming both my sons game and now we are teaching our grandchildren!! So power to the neard ‘s!! I love my geek family ?. And to think it all started with one date.

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