Talk:Drake (Ranger Familiar)

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Drakes are being redesigned to take them away from the Gygaxian concept of scale colour designates their breath weapon, personality, and encounter location, and being driven more towards wild cousins of dragons adapted to a certain environment. The naming mechanism I use for them is based around their preferred environment rather than their affinities. Dark drakes prefer to live in darkness, and their affinities reflect this preference. As such, there will not be any 'air drakes'.

As new areas open up, new animal types abound, and new drake types may become available. Desert drakes adapted to the harsh climes of Akalahai, a separation of cold and ice drakes, depending upon where in Wintercrest they reside, cave drakes from Zadnothruin, an oriental dragon style drake for Nihon and Cathay, or swamp drakes adapted for the marshlands of Ruel.

Basically, drakes are able to breathe fire, and some are born with a certain amount of affinity for a different element. This causes them to seek out environments conducive to that element, where the drake sets hirself up as one of the apex predators of that area. Certain scale colours are weeded out by means of natural selection. Dark coloured scales stand out in the wintery landscape of the Northlands and make it more difficult to stalk up on prey in the same manner as a lightly coloured drake, whose scales blend in well enough with the snow that you don't even realized sie is near until it is way too late for you to attempt to find cover. Similarly, drakes with affinities towards darkness have a hard time blending into shadows when they have lightly coloured scales. Also, the primitive minds of the beings who share the preferred climates with the dark drakes tend to associate light colours with the anthropes who try to slaughter them for merely existing, and are more likely to attack a lightly-coloured drake than to keep a healthy distance from the unholy fires that course through the drake.

Also, as a trade off for the additional power of having an affinity, physical attacks tend to be much weaker than a typical drake with no affinity. In terms of raw physical prowess, a normal drake will rend through opponents with tooth and nail with far greater 'zeal and enthusiasm' than their closely related cousins who rely on their affinities and breath attack. Also, the scales of a normal drake grow thicker and provide more natural protection, while at the same time lacking the vulnerability to the polar opposite affinities.

Current locations of 'special' drakes:

  • Water Drakes - Gardagh (water spout attack)
  • Ice Drakes - Gardagh (cold attack and waterflame attack)
  • Dark Drake - Mordo (entropic and/or unholy fire attack)
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