Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

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Havard
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Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Havard » Tue Oct 26, 2010 10:39 pm

Quoting this thread: viewtopic.php?f=63&t=4681&p=64381#p64381
Zendrolion wrote:
Havard wrote:
Hugin wrote:I don't immediately see anything regarding the history or back-story of gemstone dragons. They appear to be minor variations of the chromatic dragons. Why do you think they would exist?
The Dragonlord Trilogy is the main source on the origins of Gemstone Dragons. I am not sure, but my impression is that they became Gemstone Dragons while under the influence of the Overlord on the Outer Planes, and only arrived on Mystara in their current form whenever the DL series are set AC600s?
Gemstone Dragons originate from a cabal of ambitious dragons who, in the Blackmoor era, manage through powerful magics to improve themselves, becoming more powerful in arcane magic and supernatural powers. In order to dominate Mystara, they trigger a war between the Blackmoor Empire and other dragons, during which the First Dragonlord sees his rise. Then (but not before the dragons are nearly exterminated) the Gemstones treachery is discovered, and the dragons join forces with the Blackmoorians against them. The Gemstones are defeated and exiled in the outer plane of Veydra.

An unknown number of centuries later, the being known as the Overlord conquers Veydra and mentally enslaves the Gemstone Dragons, making them the generals of his army, which invades Mystara at the beginning of the 6th century AC (according to LoZompatore's calculations, the first novel should take place in AC 504, and the third should end in AC 513). The Overlord's army is defeated and himself destroyed thanks to Thelvyn/Thelvaenir/Diamond, and the few Gemstones surviving the war are freed from the Overlord's control and allowed to live on Mystara.

I wrote a long history of dragonkind the last year, which is nearly complete, and which tries to collate the different version of dragonkind origin and history. I'll have to publish it one day or another...

My opinion, anyway, is that there shouldn't be Gemstone Dragons on Mystara between BC 3200 (the approximate date of their exile) and AC 513.

One detail that I had previously missed here was that these dragons were turned into Gemstone Dragons in the Blackmoor Era. This fits really well with the magic system presented in the D20 DAB Sourcebook, where gemstones are used by wizards to enhance their magic. I am thinking that this is all linked to the strange rocks inhabiting magical properties that Blackmoor Castle is constructed upon.

Perhaps these dragons found some way to harbor this magic and in turn were metamorphed into their Gemstone forms?



Any thoughts on this?

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Birchbeer » Wed Oct 27, 2010 4:56 pm

I had saw this note about the first dragonlord battle too but I connected it to the Gemstone dragons using the radiance. I have never read the Dragonlord Trilogy nor D20 DAB Sourcebook, I have only read what was posted here on the board.

Perhaps any dragon could become a gemstone dragon if they used the proper rituals, spells and gemstones? It could be the Blackmoor stones, or maybe some other gemstone not commonly found anymore (or atleast not on Brun). I also read most of the gemstone dragons live on Skothar after the Overlord. Maybe the continent, or parts of it, still have that specific gemstone which they need for their rituals and diet?

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by night_druid » Wed Oct 27, 2010 5:30 pm

I'm curious...are Mystara gemstone dragons the same as the gemstone dragons in AD&D 2nd edition? Or are they different creatures altogether that share the same concept of being gem-like dragons?
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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by AuldDragon » Wed Oct 27, 2010 5:39 pm

night_druid wrote:I'm curious...are Mystara gemstone dragons the same as the gemstone dragons in AD&D 2nd edition? Or are they different creatures altogether that share the same concept of being gem-like dragons?
They're different. Some were featured in the Mystara Monstrous Compendium appendix for 2nd edition. The four that I recall are Ruby, Onyx, Jade, and Crystal, and they all mimic the appropriate chromatic dragon in general shape (ruby=red, onyx=black, etc.). I don't recall what their actual differences were as compared to the chromatics, though (although I recall a different breath weapon or something).

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Birchbeer » Wed Oct 27, 2010 7:06 pm

The fifth is called Amber, and mirrors a gold dragon in ability. Alignment differences also exist, as Amber were Chaotic, Ruby, Sapphire and Crystal were Lawful with Onyx and Jade being Neutral.

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by ripvanwormer » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:25 am

night_druid wrote:I'm curious...are Mystara gemstone dragons the same as the gemstone dragons in AD&D 2nd edition? Or are they different creatures altogether that share the same concept of being gem-like dragons?
Yeah, completely different. AD&D gem dragons are psionic and neutral in alignment. Mystaran gem dragons are non-psionic and have a variety of alignments (but dragons on Mystara in general tend to be divided along Law-Chaos lines rather than Good-Evil lines, even in the 2e version).

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Havard » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:28 pm

Birchbeer wrote:Perhaps any dragon could become a gemstone dragon if they used the proper rituals, spells and gemstones? It could be the Blackmoor stones, or maybe some other gemstone not commonly found anymore (or atleast not on Brun). I also read most of the gemstone dragons live on Skothar after the Overlord. Maybe the continent, or parts of it, still have that specific gemstone which they need for their rituals and diet?
Some cool ideas here, especially about how the Gemstone Dragons might need to consume gemstones. I think it might be a good idea to connect this to the Ceremony of Sublimination from Bruce Heard's dragon magazine article.

I would like to connect the Gemstone Dragons to the minerals of Blackmoor especially though. My theory is that the rocks under Blackmoor were fused with parts of the power of an Old One when he emerged over the Blackmoorian Peninsula in truly ancient times (extrapolation of the mysterious events described in Dungeons of Castle Blackmoor).

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Azaghal » Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:24 am

I like the idea that the stone of the Blackmoor area is infused with such power. Gemstone Dragons needing to eat a certain form of gem has certain limitations, how much do they have to eat, how much is availible and how do the dragons get their hands on the gems. I can see many of the dragons would have slaves mining for them just for the gems needed.
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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by BlackBat242 » Sat Oct 30, 2010 11:10 am

Perhaps only as a dietary supplement while breeding (from the fertilization of the eggs through laying), and then for the baby dragon during its first few months (suitable crushed first by momma/pappa).
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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Azaghal » Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:57 pm

BlackBat242 wrote:Perhaps only as a dietary supplement while breeding (from the fertilization of the eggs through laying), and then for the baby dragon during its first few months (suitable crushed first by momma/pappa).
That could work ertremely well, keeping in mind that they could use raw uncut gems as well.


I once played in a game where the party found a huge 4` ruby, turned out it was a red drgon egg. If gemstone dragons laid gemlike eggs it could be a great hook.
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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by willpell » Mon Jan 04, 2016 3:48 pm

Dredging this back up from the depths of history, and forgive my ignorance...do Mystaran spells of high spell level frequently use expensive gemstones as a material component, with the most obvious example being diamonds as the limiting factor on how often you can use Raise Dead and Resurrection?

Because if so, that would make it a VERY big deal if dragons are running around gobbling up the world supply of diamonds and other precious stones. Especially if there's some magical calamity which limits access to the Elemental Plane of Earth, or whatever other parts of the Mystara cosmology contain plentiful gems. (Or alternatively, maybe a sinister cadre of gem dragons gets into that plane and starts breeding in extreme numbers, threatening to create a veritable plague of these ultra-powerful "vermin", which then returns to the Prime and begins conquering everything.)

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Dragon Turtle » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:24 pm

Discussion of Ressurrection Spells and their effect on Clerics/Society split into a separate thread here: viewtopic.php?f=24&t=15006&p=169297#p169297

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by willpell » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:47 pm

Dragon Turtle wrote:Discussion of Ressurrection Spells and their effect on Clerics/Society split into a separate thread here: viewtopic.php?f=24&t=15006&p=169297#p169297

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I don't disagree with the decision to split, but you might have done it a bit too soon. The first post of the new thread is a direct and very to-the-point answer to my question above, about how Resurrection works in Mystara; I think perhaps that one should have stayed here, and not been counted as part of the tangential discussion of broader social issues implied by the possibility of nigh-infinite Rez spells, which is not really how Mystara works anyway, as was explained well before we really went far afield.

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Re: Origin of the Gemstone Dragons

Post by Dragon Turtle » Tue Jan 05, 2016 9:09 pm

Sorry,
it was a tough call as to where exactly make the split, but I do see your point.

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