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> Dragons and their human form., A few questions for the dragon buffs.
Ezra
post Apr 11 2005, 05:24 AM
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Hey...

Just a few questions for you dragon buffs out there. *cough*Ancient History *cough*

Great Dragons can change their form into that of a human, right?
Do they maintain the same human form? I mean, Masaru is described as a small Philippino businessman. Was Dunkelzahn also easily identifiable in his human form? <See the guy in the suit with the flashy grey hair....that's Big D>

If so, what was Dunkie's human form? If you guys could give me a decription, it'd help immensely.

Another question......dragons communicate via Thought-Speak....right? A telepathic form of communication. Does this mean that they are incapable of normal (meta)human speech?

Any help / answers / book and page references would help.

thanks.
Ezra
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Kagetenshi
post Apr 11 2005, 05:43 AM
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Great Dragons can change their form, though as I remember it's still uncertain in-game whether they all can or whether this is a power exhibited by a few. Evidence is that they can change it to whatever form they desire; they tend to choose specific forms, as I remember. Dragons in draconic form are indeed incapable of normal human speech, primarily due to massive vocal cord differences. Dragons of the Sixth World, occurring well after Dunkelzahn's death, lacks any information that I could find on Dunkie's metahuman forms.

~J
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hahnsoo
post Apr 11 2005, 05:52 AM
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Tom Dowd's story "Wyrm Talk" described Dunkelzahn's human form as the following:
QUOTE
In its place stood a young man, about twenty years old, dressed in a suit cut from the most beautiful blue silk I had ever seen. He had pale skin, and his features were those of Michelangelo's David. His eyes sparkled a sharp silver and blue.
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Shockwave_IIc
post Apr 11 2005, 09:03 AM
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QUOTE (Kagetenshi)
Great Dragons can change their form, though as I remember it's still uncertain in-game whether they all can or whether this is a power exhibited by a few.

i was under the impression that it was only greats that could. And Some greats just choose not to.
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hahnsoo
post Apr 11 2005, 09:05 AM
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QUOTE (Shockwave_IIc)
QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 11 2005, 05:43 AM)
Great Dragons can change their form, though as I remember it's still uncertain in-game whether they all can or whether this is a power exhibited by a few.

i was under the impression that it was only greats that could. And Some greats just choose not to.

I don't think Haesslich was a great dragon, but he certainly could take human form. Same with Perianwyr (who took human form in the story told in Dragons of the Sixth World), who isn't a great dragon. So I don't think it's limited to Great Dragons.
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Fortune
post Apr 11 2005, 10:52 AM
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It is an inate ability for Great Dragons, but nothing stops a normal Dragon from using a spell to do the same thing.
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Ancient History
post Apr 11 2005, 12:31 PM
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Great Dragons can choose to develop it as an innate ability (not all do), lesser dragons and greats without the power make do with shapechange spells and sustaining foci.

Dragons can apparently appear as whatever they want, but there are certain forms they tend to prefer and adopt more often.

Dragons aren't much good for vocal communication in dragon form. That's why they have interpreters or appear in metahuman form: microphones don't pick up Dragonspeech (the telepathic conversation you hear in your head).
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Kagetenshi
post Apr 11 2005, 02:07 PM
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QUOTE (Shockwave_IIc)
QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 11 2005, 05:43 AM)
Great Dragons can change their form, though as I remember it's still uncertain in-game whether they all can or whether this is a power exhibited by a few.

i was under the impression that it was only greats that could. And Some greats just choose not to.

I meant all Greats, not all dragons.

~J
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Ezra
post Apr 11 2005, 04:43 PM
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Great.... thanks a lot guys. More than enough for me to work from.

So, to summarise....

Great Dragons can choose to develop the power of shapechange. (But not all do.)
Other dragons can duplicate the effect with a spell.
The Thought-speak thing is only a limitation in their draconic form, and once they assume a metahuman form, they can communicate normally.
They have preferences for their human form, but are not bound to appear in the same one all the time.

Correct? :)

Thanks again for all the help.
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winterhawk11
post Apr 11 2005, 05:54 PM
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Yes, this is correct.

Originally adult dragons seemed to need some kind of focus to maintain human form (see Haesslich's dragon ring) but that seems to have gone by the wayside.

Several adult dragons, including Perianwyr and Haesslich, are known to have assumed human form. Some, like "Damon" (from DotSW) prefer it to dragon form. :)
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Ancient History
post Apr 11 2005, 07:28 PM
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Adult dragons still need a focus to sustain the spell, as far as is known.
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winterhawk11
post Apr 11 2005, 08:29 PM
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Do they need one, or is it just more convenient that way? I mean, a lowly player-character mage can sustain a shapechange or mask spell without a focus--sure, they'll take the t-number hit, but they can do it. I would assume a dragon can do the same thing.

'Course, I'm here at work and DotSW is at home, so I might just be speaking from faulty memory. If so, I apologize. I should really know this stuff, seeing as how I'm a dragon junkie and all, so if I don't it's kind of embarrassing. :)
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Cynic project
post Apr 11 2005, 08:55 PM
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QUOTE (hahnsoo)

I don't think Haesslich was a great dragon, but he certainly could take human form.

He was using a spell,and masking.
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Ancient History
post Apr 11 2005, 09:33 PM
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THey don't /need/ one, but everyone I know of uses them if they're going to be spending any amount of time in metahuman form...which is almost all of them.
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Sharaloth
post Apr 11 2005, 11:23 PM
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I think it can be assumed dragons have the 'Focused Concentration' edge, and might even have a unique 'Compartementalized Mind' edge (Witness Lofwyr watching a whole bunch of tridsets at once while carrying on a conversation. Int of 13+ or not, that's gotta be an interesting ability, though whether this is applicaple to all dragons or just him or just greats is debatable). They might take no modifiers at all from sustaining one or two spells. On the other hand, of course it's always good to throw these things in a sustaining focus. IIRC One of the dragons in DotSW actually didn't have his in a focus, and shifted back to draconic form when he passed out in a bar.
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Edward
post Apr 12 2005, 02:10 AM
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I was under the impression that dragons have no inherent shape shifting power at all.

They use a version on shape change or transform that allows metahuman shapes to take the form of a metahuman. As all great dragons have every spell in the book and any others they want on there spells known list any great dragon would have the ability to do this.

Further it implies that any constancy of form is at the whim of the dragon involved (isnít everything) a point to consider is hans brachoust being several different metatypes.

Edward
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Fortune
post Apr 12 2005, 02:14 AM
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It is specifically stated in canon that Great Dragons (only) have this as an inate ability.
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Ancient History
post Apr 12 2005, 02:17 AM
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It's not inherent. It's learned. Lesser dragons make do with shapechange spells...so do some of the Greats who choose not to develop that power.

All great dragons don't know every spell...although they know most of them and can come up with the others almost on-the-spot if needed.

Hans Brackhaus is a bad example, because while Lofwyr may have initially used it as a pseudoidentity, it quickly became common throughout certain circles to use the name.

As far as has been determined, Great Dragons can manifest as metahumans of any metatype (not sure about gender, it hasn't come up). They tend to show up looking more or less the same when manifesting as the same metatype more than once, but whether this is familiarity, desire to reinforce a particular image, a limitation, or mere whim is unknown.
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Fortune
post Apr 12 2005, 02:28 AM
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By 'inate', I meant that the power is avalable to all Greats. The fact that not all of them make use of it doesn't mean they couldn't if they so chose.
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Crimson Jack
post Apr 12 2005, 02:47 AM
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QUOTE (Ancient History)
As far as has been determined, Great Dragons can manifest as metahumans of any metatype (not sure about gender, it hasn't come up).

Isn't there something in Dot6W about Aden's gender and his/her public perception in his/her theatre of operation?
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JaronK
post Apr 12 2005, 03:39 AM
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Well, Damon is an adult (not great) dragon, and is well known for taking on different human forms. In fact, he does so more than he appears draconic. And he's certainly able to speak.

JaronK
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Ancient History
post Apr 12 2005, 11:39 AM
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Crimson Jack: Yes, but that's only because the world wants to lift up Aden's tail and know whether or not to insist Aden wears a veil.

JaronK: Damon uses a shapechange spell, in all probability. Possibly with a sustaining focus, especially if he's concentrating on...other activities at the moment. ;)
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Chibu
post Apr 12 2005, 07:27 PM
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The only problem i have with GDs having the "innate" (read: learned or whatever you want) ability of 'metahuman form' (not shapechange btw) is that the Dragons (the ED book) it;s stated, IIRC that the great dragons just used spells to assume metahuman form, and that there was no innate ability (i believe it was said that the GDs got the idea from like one of the Kings of throal (or some other random dwarf))

However, if this is an 'innate' ability, it would be assumed, IMO, to be limited to one form.

Also, Thought-Speech is not a limitation. Mics not being alive is the limitation :P But, yes, in their natural Draconic forms, Dragons simply do not posses the organs to make (meta)human speech.
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Fortune
post Apr 12 2005, 07:58 PM
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QUOTE (Chibu @ Apr 13 2005, 05:27 AM)
The only problem i have with GDs having the "innate" (read: learned or whatever you want) ability of 'metahuman form' (not shapechange btw) is that the Dragons (the ED book) it;s stated, IIRC that the great dragons just used spells to assume metahuman form, and that there was no innate ability (i believe it was said that the GDs got the idea from like one of the Kings of throal (or some other random dwarf))

Of course, the Earthdawn Dragons book was mostly written 'in character' by Great Dragons themselves, and could be seen to contain at least some misdirection. Just one example of which is the stated relationship between Wyverns and Dragons.
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Kagetenshi
post Apr 12 2005, 08:13 PM
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It's stated in canon somewhere, IIRC, that more than a few Greats were miffed at Dunkie for tipping his hand on the ability to take human form.

~J
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