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Story of a Dragon, need ideas...


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#1 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 05:22 PM

I'm designing an RTS, where one side is dragons.  But as I started getting into it, I'm finding that powerful magical dragons are actually white bulls in disguise.  I can't figure out things about their habits  life styles.  They were essentially peaceful, brought into a war with humans taking over their planets.

 

Can someone give me ideas as to what a dragon culture might be?  What do they do, what do they want?  How do they live?  what do their houses look like? or perches of caves?  What about dragon cities?  Jobs?

 

So far I've imagined them as elegant magic users, with great wisdom, but I'm open to making them more balanced with good and evil, like humans.  

 

tell me about how you see dragons.  what would dragon societies do?

 

thanks.

 

EDIT: The biggest question I have is about their cities, what are the structures like?  what structures do they need?  (Sheep farm, Scale mending, Nursery, Mages Guild, Wizards Guild, Library, nesting grounds, mana shrines[magic source])  any ideas would be great, I'm very flexible, thanks.


Edited by hpdvs2, 15 January 2013 - 05:26 PM.

Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


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#2 Gregory Aaron Martin   Members   -  Reputation: 158

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 05:45 PM

I like some of the ideas presented here. My dragons are able to travel to different planets through, essentially, a wormhole. They are bringers of peace and knowldege but find themselves at war with men.


Edited by Gregory Aaron Martin, 20 October 2013 - 10:58 AM.


#3 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 06:55 PM

I already had a bunch of ideas, but I didn't want to limit myself to one mind.  two are better than one :)  Here is what I was originally thinking.  The only reason I didn't want to post it, was to hear other people ideas without being pigeon holed.  
 

Why wouldn't dragons develop in similar ways to humans, I.e. cloths, belts, bags.  Posessions, houses?

Naturally they have certain advantages, and don't need certain weapons like spears, and likely, nothing is threatening to an adult dragon, or any dragon past a year of age.

But they might have wars, or histories of wars.  

 

I'm picturing a dragon eggs might take a while, and instead of being raised by a single or two parents, they are raised by the community, as a group effort to teach and protect them.  So dragon eggs remain in a nursery with other eggs until they hatch, where they are raised in an academy, which is kind of like a boarding school where other dragons of all types come in to help teach and pass on wisdom.  Once they are old enough, and have passed at least one test, (different tests for different characteristics, like battle, magic, medical, farming, etc..)  they are released to live in the wild for a year.  where they will try to employ their knowledge.

 

On their return, they have various jobs.  At this point, they will seek masters.  Dragons will use multiple masters, but in different trades.  Their culture believes you do best when you spread out your knowledge further, and learn to apply helpful things from multiple industries to improve them.

 

Some are farmers, raising sheep, cows and bears for food.  Others run restaurants.  Other ones are minors, raising up stone for buildings.  

 

By human standards, dragons live in huge buildings.  carved stone of intricate work.  Much of which is done by hand, but dragons still use tools, and have use of metal smiths and wood workers to produce them.  

 

There is more than one type of dragon, but they tend to live separately.  larger dragons can sometimes miss the smaller ones and step on them. it just doesn't work out.

 

the smaller ones are a little more like man, and do work for the larger dragons, and vice versa.  The larger dragons are often the large structure builders, and smaller dragons often do the detail work.  

 

Older dragons are revered as wise in their culture, and are the most sought after masters, but will often set strong standards for who they will teach.  


Edited by Dan Violet Sagmiller, 20 October 2013 - 08:55 AM.

Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#4 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:23 PM

I was searching through Deviant Art, for pictures of dragons doing things aside from just sitting there looking cool.  I found one what was spitting fire to help a black smith.  but It also occurred to me that they are easily artists, like a bohemian dragon dreaming.  Does anyone have recommendations for short stories about dragon society.  I don't tend to like hundreds of types of dragons with what appears to be their only purpose being what they are genetically designed specifically for, like ramming, flying, spitting acid, stomping, etc...  but dragons that take on additional roles in society.  I haven't read anything like that, and I'm having a hard time finding references.  Creating dragons as a society of craftsmen is tougher than I thought it would be.


Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#5 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 8647

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:18 PM

I think it would be cool to see a dragon wearing a smoking jacket, smoking a Meerschaum pipe, lounging in a comfy chair by a cozy warm fireplace.  Pictures of dragon loved ones adorn the walls.  A floor lamp over his shoulder as he reads a book on a Kindle.

 

As for the city, I think that depends on the type of dragon.  If we're talking Chinese dragons, then the city should be smoggy, with a mix of old and new.

If we're talking European dragons, then the city should be picturesque, with some architecture going back hundreds of years, and cobblestoned streets. 

With Jetsons-style traffic lanes and traffic lights floating in the sky (since dragons can, after all, fly). 


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#6 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:29 PM

I think it would be cool to see a dragon wearing a smoking jacket, smoking a Meerschaum pipe, lounging in a comfy chair by a cozy warm fireplace.  Pictures of dragon loved ones adorn the walls

 

biggrin.png I immediately pictured a dragon form of Gandalf, until the Ipad, but then I figured thats what he was reading.  

 

This is very helpful though.  I'm getting a picture of a dragon relaxing.  at leasure.

 

Aside from reading, what other non-genetically imposed past times do you think dragons like?  What would be their sports.  Something like Quittage?  and the ball is a boulder.  and the snitch is a bird, a large one, fast.

 

Races?  Archery?  Magic competitions?  What does every dragon watch on TV?  Or presuming a magic world, what do all dragons what to be spectating at?  Dragon foot ball.  perhaps steam punk takes off more for dragons, because they just have to breath on the water tank and instant pressure .  (My wife wants to make sure she gets the credit for suggesting this to me)  Steam punk would be interesting.  Dragons driving trains by sitting on them and blowing fire at the water reserves.


Edited by hpdvs2, 15 January 2013 - 08:30 PM.

Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#7 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 8647

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 09:09 PM

What would be their sports.  Something like Quittage?

 

You mean Quidditch.  I imagine dragon extreme sports -- sliding down glaciers, with jump ramps and chasms to arc over.  With their flame breath, they'd be able to melt snow or ice and form new shapes to slalom on -- building the course in real time, while engaging in the sport.


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#8 Got_Rhythm   Members   -  Reputation: 239

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 07:38 PM

I imagine dragons have a very large natural life-span, and actually never stop growing, so the man-size dragons are relatively young (maybe up to 100 years old for example) with larger barn-size dragons being closer to 1000 years old.

I would also borrow from a lot of reptile physiology, so they have poor hearing due to small ears, so music isn't very important in their culture. They are probably cold blooded, so the like warm conditions and are vulnerable to ice-magic or ice-weapons.

I imagine they don't fly much because it uses a lot of energy, especially due to their size, but reserve it for sports, battles or emergencies. There is also a group which is extremely good at flying though and does it often (their version of the Air Force).

I like your idea of having nurseries where many eggs are looked after. I imagine they have a long incubation period and that they do not reproduce often, which makes protecting eggs almost sacred to them (after all, one of the reasons mammoths died out it because they had a 3 year gestation period, so just couldn't keep their numbers up.)

I like the idea of them living in cliff faces in huge cave structures, but if you want them a bit more down to earth I think their homes would be one huge room (they probably like to stretch their wings.

I thought of more but I was at work so couldn't write them down, will check back later...

#9 Stormynature   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2666

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 06:16 PM

They were essentially peaceful, brought into a war with humans taking over their planets.

 

Is this a genre that you are more basing on interplanetary travel/space combat or would you be referring to interdimensional travel i.e. portals.

 

So far I've imagined them as elegant magic users, with great wisdom, but I'm open to making them more balanced with good and evil, like humans.

 

If the dragons have spread out over a number of planets. Have they themselves been conquerors of other races or simply settled unihabited/primitive worlds. I did note your comment as to being peaceful but was this always the case? Your good/evil might also be looked at from an argument of Manifest destiny, where the morality/ethics of the culture is subsumed into the greater belief.

 

There is more than one type of dragon, but they tend to live separately. larger dragons can sometimes miss the smaller ones and step on them. it just doesn't work out. The smaller ones are a little more like man, and do work for the larger dragons, and vice versa. The larger dragons are often the large structure builders, and smaller dragons often do the detail work.

Are you looking to have Dragons in classic form i.e. Western / Asiatic dragon types or looking to anthropomorphise them to (essentially) humanoid dragons eg. Something like this ? Or perhaps species differentiations within the kingdom of Dragons i.e. in similar vein to how humans, gorillas, monkeys might be said to inter-related? The scale of size difference implied by a large dragon stepping and squashing a smaller dragon type implies an order of magnitude in size difference which can imply a completely different set of living conditions required i.e. a second form of architectural requirement esp. if dealing with a differentiated physical type.

 

Defining the physical abilities/limitations of your dragons can strongly influence the type of technology/culture that you choose to evolve.



#10 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 10:06 PM

Is this a genre that you are more basing on interplanetary travel/space combat or would you be referring to interdimensional travel i.e. portals.

 

It is a terrestrial surface battle, without the use of starships.  When you have warp technologies, why use the energy to escape the atmosphere?  

 

If the dragons have spread out over a number of planets. Have they themselves been conquerors of other races or simply settled uninhabited primitive worlds. I did note your comment as to being peaceful but was this always the case? Your good/evil might also be looked at from an argument of Manifest destiny, where the morality/ethics of the culture is subsumed into the greater belief.

 

My thought, is that the dragons have left (for the most part) inhabited planets alone.  Though they did visit the earth a few times in the dark ages, (Merlin/King Arthur's time) and a few times prior, they ultimately decided that though humans were smart enough to communicate, they were too aggressive  and their presence typically brought war to the humans unintentionally.  The dragons have plenty of undeveloped worlds.  Plants, some animals, but not lacking significant logical communications.  They often like solitude and meditation in learn more in their abilities.  Though I would imagine there may be a few other relatively intelligent races in their explorations, and some of which they are at peace with.

 

However, despite the externally facing peaceful nature when it comes to other worlds, internally, two of their races have gone to war in the past on numerous occasions.  Some times the masters put a stop to it, but only if the raucous is significant enough.

 

Are you looking to have Dragons in classic form i.e. Western / Asiatic dragon types or looking to anthropomorphise them to (essentially) humanoid dragons eg. Something like this ? Or perhaps species differentiations within the kingdom of Dragons i.e. in similar vein to how humans, gorillas, monkeys might be said to inter-related? The scale of size difference implied by a large dragon stepping and squashing a smaller dragon type implies an order of magnitude in size difference which can imply a completely different set of living conditions required i.e. a second form of architectural requirement esp. if dealing with a differentiated physical type.
 
Defining the physical abilities/limitations of your dragons can strongly influence the type of technology/culture that you choose to evolve.

 

I presumed closest to the Western appearance for two races, and 1 dragon race is a little closer to human, but taller and more athletic.

 

The largest though well meditated, and aware, have accidentally squashed some of the smaller dragons, Everyone knows its accidental, but to avoid too much issues, you typically won't see the largest race casually around the other races.


Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#11 Stormynature   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2666

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:55 AM

Have only just now discovered your related thread in Game Design - Can you insert a link to it in your original post for the benefit of others who also may have missed it please, as it bears information in it relevant to the discussion at hand.

 

Steampunk Dragons - What would they make?



#12 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 06:11 AM

Have only just now discovered your related thread in Game Design - Can you insert a link to it in your original post for the benefit of others who also may have missed it please, as it bears information in it relevant to the discussion at hand.
 
Steampunk Dragons - What would they make?

 

Thats a good thing to keep in mind, I'll consider it for future posts.  However, I tend to purposefully try to leave the questions somewhat vague.  My intention with the previous post, was specifically steam punk items, like a jet pack, elevators, stone steam powered doors, etc...  I.e. where would they use steam?

 

For this post, I've been hoping more for lifestyle, social structures, etc...   I have some ideas on it, but I like finding more, to help give them a richer history and deeper nature and less War Beast.  We have our Humanity, what is the Dragon's Dragonity?


Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#13 NewDisplayName   Members   -  Reputation: 351

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 09:49 AM

One more thing to add to the plot, maybe not directly related to the dragons is "why would humans want to go to war with dragons?"

If what humans are after is also a source of dragon's powers then this can be a starting point to create a culture of dragons based around this relic.

What I have suggested is probably no different than a movie plot like Avatar's or tons of other such stories, but this is one obvious building block that needs to be there.

I have seen most games fallout because of a weak reasoning. And specially since this is an RTS, sound reasoning does matter.

 

Now for example, say humans are after a volcano, called Orodruin (for convenience), which contains a seamingly endless supply of gold, but this is what also powers the dragon kingdom i.e. source of their unending fire, then a dragon culture would involve

1) shrines built out of lava.

2) schools where the power of fire control and use is taught.

3) architecture where lava is basically used to extract and build necessary elements for building them

4) clothes that draw heat force from nearby volcanic activities and rejuvenate dragon health supplies or basic fire power for that matter.

5) caves inside volcano for home but furnished with all necessities a dragon can need

6) dragon festivals that include occasional drop-the-ring-in-the-volcano festivities. ;-)

 

Hope this gives some direction to your ideas.



#14 Dan Violet Sagmiller   Members   -  Reputation: 896

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 12:26 PM

Now for example, say humans are after a volcano, called Orodruin (for convenience), which contains a seamingly endless supply of gold, but this is what also powers the dragon kingdom i.e. source of their unending fire, then a dragon culture would involve
1) shrines built out of lava.
2) schools where the power of fire control and use is taught.
3) architecture where lava is basically used to extract and build necessary elements for building them
4) clothes that draw heat force from nearby volcanic activities and rejuvenate dragon health supplies or basic fire power for that matter.
5) caves inside volcano for home but furnished with all necessities a dragon can need
6) dragon festivals that include occasional drop-the-ring-in-the-volcano festivities. ;-)

 

That is a very good point.  I like the shear amount of content you came up with for your example.


Moltar - "Do you even know how to use that?"

Space Ghost - “Moltar, I have a giant brain that is able to reduce any complex machine into a simple yes or no answer."

Dan - "Best Description of AI ever."

My Game(s), Warp Wars is in early development and can be found here: http://blog.WarpWars.Net.


#15 TechnoGoth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2197

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:19 PM

Anthropomorphic  Dragons…

What if the dragon society was similar to sea lions?  Each rockery (city/town/stronghold/etc..) has a single alpha male known as a great dragon and operates as an independent city state.   The females are all members of the great dragon’s harem and the other adult males are known as betas.  Young males are highly competitive and fight regularly for dominance with each other. Young males who are defeated in a dominance battle lose a small part of the essence known as having their wings clipped (to steal an idea from bleach).  Once a dragon’s wings have been clipped it can no longer fly or become a great dragon, they are forced to remain betas the rest of their life.  Young males who survive long enough to reach adulthood without having their wings clipped either challenge the alpha for control of the rockery or are driven out to form their own rockery.  Beta males continue to serve the rockery generally in a menial capacity.  They are have to rely on stealth and trickery to form relationships with the female dragons and if they are caught they are punished severely by the alpha.

 

Since the young males are busy battling for dominance most of the import position and governance of the rockery falls to the female dragons.  They run the council, handling medicine, engineering, science, and trade. They have a strong sense of community and hold a great deal of respect in the world.  Because the males are highly territorial the trade caravans between rockeries are always crewed by woman and ambassadors are also always female. It’s also not uncommon for ambitions young females unable to get ahead to leave with lesser males driven out in order to command positions of importance in a new rockery.

 

Example of a rockery:

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