Red Dragon Disciple
Description: It is known that certain dragons can take humanoid form and even have humanoid lovers. Sometimes a child is born of this union, and every child of that child unto the thousandth generation claims a bit of dragon blood, be it ever so small. Usually, little comes of it, though mighty sorcerers occasionally credit their powers to draconic heritage. For some, however, dragon blood beckons irresistibly. These characters become dragon disciples, who use their magical power as a catalyst to ignite their dragon blood, realizing its fullest potential. Members of this prestige class draw on the potent blood of red dragons coursing through their veins. Though red dragons are among the most cruel and evil creatures on Faerun, red dragon disciples may be of any alignment.
|Hit die: d12|
|Skill points: 2 + Int modifier|
|Class skills: Concentration, Craft Alchemy, Craft Armor, Craft Trap, Craft Weapon, Diplomacy, Listen, Lore, Parry, Search, Spellcraft, Spot|
|Base attack bonus progression: Medium|
|Saving throws||high:||Fortitude, Will|
Natural Armor Increase
At 1st, level, the red dragon disciple's skin toughens and begins to grow scaly, granting them a +1 unarmored bonus to AC. This bonus improves to +2 at 4th level, +3 at 7th level, and +4 at 10th level. These increases are treated as base bonuses by the game engine (similar to ability score increases below) and therefore stack with all others.
Draconic Ability Scores
As the red dragon disciples keep uniting with their draconic blood, their ability scores improve significantly. At 2nd level, they gain a +2 to Strength. At 4th level, this bonus increases to +4. At 6th level, the red dragon disciple gains a +2 to Constitution, and at 8th level they gain +2 Intelligence. Finally, at 10th level, they gain an additional +4 bonus to Strength (for a total of +8) and a +2 to Charisma.
Note 1: Ability score improvements, when applicable, are normally given at the start of a PC's level-up process. However, ability score bonuses granted by this class are awarded at the end of the level-up process - after skills, spells and feats are chosen (or automatically assigned). This has potential implications for the timing of certain feat selections, explained in note 2, as well as available skill points (e.g. once a PC has progressed to level eight in this class, they will have an extra skill point to work with every level-up thereafter).
Note 2: This feat will permanently modify your ability scores, rather than providing an artificial boost like an item or spell. There are three major advantages to this:
- These increases to your ability score do not count against the maximum +12 ability boost from magical and bonus effects. Abilities and spells like Rage and Frenzy do hit against this cap when combined. See Ability cap for more information.
- Because the increases are now part of your base ability score, they count toward feat and class requirements. For example, if your intelligence is 12 and you take the 8th level of RDD, it increases to 14 and you now meet the requirements for Combat Expertise. Thus taking levels of RDD early can open feats to you that may not have been available otherwise.
- RDD offers a way to reach the maximum of 50 in an ability score without cheating or playing a special mod (in this case, Strength). Here are some examples:
- With a racial bonus of +2 and 10 levels in RDD, you can reach a maximum innate Strength of 35 by level 30 (20 starting + 7 ability points by level 30 + 8 from RDD) without even using Great Strength.
- Add the maximum +12 from bonus effects (such as Frenzy and Greater Rage stacked, or the item Amulet of Betrayal Personified) and you can reach 47 Strength.
- You can finish the job by obtaining Great Strength as many times as needed to reach 50.
- Be aware that the game's cap is 50 and it may have problems if you exceed this hard limit at any time. In other words, if you already have 50 Strength with your temporary bonuses and have more epic feats or points from leveling, don't increase your strength any further or the game caps it at 50 (and you may see other unwelcome bugs). See Ability cap.
At 3rd level, the dragon disciple gains the ability to breathe a cone of fire that deals 2d10 points of damage to all creatures within its area. This damage increases to 4d10 at 7th level and 6d10 at 10th level. Targets may make a Reflex save (DC 10 + 1/2 the red dragon disciple's class level + the character's Charisma bonus). This ability may be used once per day.
The breath weapon animation appears to be bugged in that its visualization is inconsistent and may not always show when used.
At 5th level, the red dragon disciple gains the ability to fight well, even if blinded or against invisible creatures. A character with this ability gets to re-roll their miss chance percentile one time to see if they actually hit. Furthermore, invisible creatures get no bonus to hit the RDD in melee.
At 10th level, the red dragon disciple's transformation is complete: they become a half-dragon and gain darkvision, the ability to cast see invisibility as a racial spell once per day (as a caster of equal character level) as well as immunity to sleep, paralysis, and fire.
|1||Natural armor increase I|
|3||Breath weapon I x1|
|4||Natural armor increase II, +2 Strength|
|7||Natural armor increase III, breath weapon II x1|
|10||Natural armor increase IV, breath weapon III x1, +4 Strength, +2 Charisma, half-dragon|
- This class was introduced in the Hordes of the Underdark NWN expansion.
- The red dragon disciple in NWN gained the natural armor increases, draconic ability scores, and breath weapon at different levels. Also, the NWN version didn't get blind-fight, and gained a different amount of hit points based on level, starting from d6 and ending at d12.
- NWN2 will repeat NWN's design in that it will only allow red dragon disciple, not any other colours.
- Unlike NWN, the NWN2 implementation doesn't give the RDD visual wings.
- The discipline skill that was created for NWN was removed in NWN2 and combat feats relating to it now function closer to 3.5 rules.
3.5 Rules Comparison
3.5E allows Disciples of each draconic color or metal, not just red, with corresponding breath weapons and immunities.
|Level||Features Gained||Bonus Spells|
|1st||Natural armor increase (+1)||1|
|2nd||Ability boost (Str +2), claws and bite||1|
|3rd||Breath weapon (2d8)||0|
|4th||Ability boost (Str +2), natural armor increase (+2)||1|
|5th||Blindsense 30 ft.||1|
|6th||Ability boost (Con +2)||1|
|7th||Breath weapon (4d8), natural armor increase (+3)||0|
|8th||Ability boost (Int +2)||1|
|10th||Blindsense 60 ft., dragon apotheosis||0|
NWN2 does not implement the Dragon Disciple's bonus spell or claws and bite abilities. The Dragon disciple should gain the following:
Bonus Spells: Dragon disciples gain bonus spells as they gain levels in this prestige class, as if from having a high ability score, as given on Table: The Dragon Disciple. A bonus spell can be added to any level of spells the disciple already has the ability to cast. If a character has more than one spellcasting class, he must decide to which class he adds each bonus spell as it is gained. Once a bonus spell has been applied, it cannot be shifted.
Claws and Bite (Ex): At 2nd level, a dragon disciple gains claw and bite attacks if he does not already have them. Use the values below or the disciple’s base claw and bite damage values, whichever are greater.
|Size||Bite Damage||Claw Damage|
A dragon disciple is considered proficient with these attacks. When making a full attack, a dragon disciple uses his full base attack bonus with his bite attack but takes a –5 penalty on claw attacks. The Multiattack feat reduces this penalty to only –2.
- The parry skill was created by NWN and is not a feature of DnD 3.5. It has returned in NWN2 for the same reasons it was in NWN.
Contrary to the in-game description, becoming a half-dragon will not bestow Darkvision upon a character; this feat is only available to races that grant Darkvision by default.
One solution: once the character has achieved class level 10 as a Red Dragon Disciple, open the console and manually give the feat:
- select character to receive Darkvision
- press the "~" button, which opens the console, then type and enter these lines:
- debugmode 1
- givefeat 228
- debugmode 0
- press the "~" button to close the console