AC 22 (natural armor)
HP 487 (25d20 + 225; 243)
Speed 40 ft., fly 80 ft., swim 40 ft.
Proficiency +8; Maneuver DC 26
Saving Throws Dex +10, Con +17, Wis +11, Cha +17
Skills Insight +11, Perception +11 (+1d6), Persuasion +17, Stealth +10
Damage Immunities fire
Senses blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 24
Languages Common, Draconic, two more
Legendary Resistance (3/Day). When the dragon fails a , it can choose to succeed instead. When it does, some of its scales fall away, forming pools of molten gold. If it has no more uses of this ability, its Armor Class is reduced to 20 until it finishes a long rest.
Valor. Creatures of the dragon’s choice within 30 feet gain a +3 bonus to saving throws and are immune to the and conditions.
Innate Spellcasting. The dragon’s spellcasting ability is Charisma (save DC 25). It can innately cast the following spells, requiring no material components.
3/day each: , , ,
Multiattack. The dragon attacks with its bite and twice with its claws.
Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 32 (4d10 + 10) piercing damage plus 9 (2d8) fire damage.
Claws. Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 28 (4d8 + 10) slashing damage.
Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 20 ft., one target. Hit: 23 (3d8 + 10) bludgeoning damage, and the dragon pushes the target 10 feet away.
Greatsword (Humanoid Form Only). Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 17 (2d6 + 10) slashing damage.
Molten Spit. The dragon targets one creature within 60 feet, forcing it to make a DC 25 Dexterity . The creature takes 27 (5d10) fire damage on a failure or half on a success. Liquid gold pools in a 5-foot-square occupied by the creature and remains hot for 1 minute. A creature that ends its turn in the gold or enters it for the first time on a turn takes 22 (4d10) fire damage.
Breath Weapons (Recharge 5–6). The dragon uses one of the following breath weapons:
Molten Breath. The dragon exhales molten gold in a 90-foot cone. Each creature in the area makes a DC 25 Dexterity , taking 88 (16d10) fire damage on a failed save or half damage on a success. A creature that fails the saving throw is covered in a shell of rapidly cooling gold, reducing its Speed to 0. A creature can use an action to break the shell, ending the effect.
Weakening Breath. The dragon exhales weakening gas in a 90-foot cone. Each creature in the area must succeed on a DC 25 Constitution or suffer on weapon attack rolls for 1 minute. A weakened creature repeats the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on a success.
Change Shape. The dragon magically takes the shape of a humanoid or beast, or changes back into its true form. It reverts to its true form if it dies. Any equipment it is wearing or carrying is absorbed or borne by the new form (dragon’s choice). In the new form, the dragon’s stats are unchanged except for its size. It can’t use Molten Spit, Breath Weapons, Tail Attack, or Wing Attack except in dragon form. In beast form, it can attack only with its bite and claws, if appropriate to its form. If the beast form is Large or smaller, the reach of these attacks is reduced to 5 feet. In humanoid form, it can attack only with its greatsword.
Tail Attack. When a creature the dragon can see within 10 feet hits the dragon with a melee attack, the dragon makes a tail attack against it.
Vanguard. When another creature the dragon can see within 20 feet is hit by an attack, the dragon deflects the attack, turning the hit into a miss.
The dragon can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature's turn. It regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.
Roar. Each creature of the dragon’s choice within 120 feet that can hear it makes a DC 25 Charisma . On a failure, it is for 1 minute. A creature repeats the saving throw at the end of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. When it succeeds on a saving throw or the effect ends for it, it is immune to Roar for 24 hours.
Wing Attack. The dragon beats its wings. Each creature within 15 feet makes a DC 26 Dexterity . On a failure, it is pushed 10 feet away and knocked . The dragon can then fly up to half its fly speed.
Fiery Reprisal (Costs 2 Actions). The dragon uses Molten Spit against the last creature to deal damage to it.
While individual dragons have their own personalities and tactics, most rely heavily on their breath weapons. They use them whenever they can, preferably from maximum distance and while flying above their enemies.
When fighting in the open, dragons often circle above their enemies as they wait for their breath weapons to recharge. They only close to melee if their enemies deal significant damage with ranged attacks, or if they can savage an enemy cut off from its allies. Once, dragons become more aggressive, attacking with bite and claws when their breath weapons aren’t available.
If a dragon is protecting its lair, it utilizes lair features, traps, allies, and architecture such as escape tunnels to keep up a hit-and-run fight, reappearing only when it has a fully-recharged breath weapon. If the dragon is forced into melee combat, it uses its bite and claws against a single foe. If it has legendary actions like Roar and Wing Attack, it uses them to disperse its other enemies.
If reduced to less than one-fourth its hit points while fighting in the open, a dragon flies away. However, it fights to the death to defend its lair, unless it can regain the upper hand through tricks or bargains.
Gold Dragon Lair Features
The save DC for the following effects is 13 + the dragon’s proficiency modifier. Choose or roll one or more of the following lair features:
1 An inner chamber in the dragon’s lair has large mirrors arranged on the walls. The dragon can use a legendary action while within reach of the wall to make a final adjustment, at which point every non-dragon creature in the lair makes a Constitution . On a failure, the creature is while in the chamber. If any of the mirrors are shattered, the effect ends.
2 When a creature sees the dragon’s treasure for the first time, it makes a Wisdom . On a failure, it is by the treasure. While charmed, it must use its movement to approach the pile and its action to take treasure. At the end of each of its turns and whenever it takes damage, the creature repeats the saving throw, ending the effect on itself on a success.
3 Once per day, the dragon can use a legendary action to drink from a crucible of molten gold, recharging its breath weapon.
4 The dragon can use a bonus action to open a secret door to an escape tunnel. The dragon can make a claw attack on the tunnel to cause it to start collapsing. Creatures in the tunnel at the beginning of each of the dragon’s turns take 22 (4d10) bludgeoning damage from falling debris.
Aurum the Bold, Glitterwing, Gordachel, Halcyon, Salgexica, Pontifarix
Legends and Lore
With an Arcana or History check, characters can learn the following:
DC 10 Gold dragons are the largest and most regal of the metallic dragons. Only red dragons rival their might.
DC 15 Though they are creatures of flesh and bone, a gold dragon’s scales are made of real gold. They breathe molten gold like a red dragon breathes fire.
DC 20 Gold dragons are powerful champions of good, but winning one’s support is a task fit for only the greatest of heroes.
Haughty and regal, gold dragons carry themselves with the swagger of a gallant knight. They are both indispensable allies and terrifying foes. Should they deem a cause righteous, they take to it with absolute zeal, whether or not that cause aligns with the concerns of short-lived folk.
Aloof Hermits. Gold dragons greatly value their privacy. They know many humanoids regard them as god-like creatures capable of solving any problem. But as gold dragons learn from a young age, the more you help people, the more they need your help. Sooner or later, every side in every conflict petitions you for aid. Nasty business, says the dragon, who wants no part of it.
Deep Hoards. Though their loyalty can’t be bought, gold dragons appreciate treasure as much as any dragon. They happily accept offerings of gold or jewels. In fact, gold dragons can eat such treasures for sustenance (they enjoy pearls and gems especially) but they have no need to gorge themselves, meaning their hoards tend to grow larger as they age.
Guardian Vigil. Gold dragons maintain large territories, always keeping an eye out for extraplanar threats, tyranny in nearby nations, and the encroachment of red dragons. Gold dragons can be overzealous in their response to such threats, their righteous anger often causing unintended collateral damage.
1 On a mission against an evil monster
2 On a peak or other high ground, watching for trouble
3 Disguised as an animal, such as a or other creature, which will befriend those in need
4 Drowsing on its treasure hoard
1 Clouds look like they’ve been shaped into sculptures
2 Whatever the time of year, trees are heavy with ripe fruit
3 Resident intelligent creatures are cheerful and unafraid of travelers
4 Distant spires and monuments
Gold dragons appreciate lairs with history, often making their homes in ancient ruins and old tombs.
Treasure 300 gp, 10 antique weapons (25 gp each), 2 , (rust)
CR 5–10 ; with 2 or 3 , , or
Treasure 1,000 gp, gold bracelet shaped like twining roses (250 gp), 2 gold bracelets (75 gp each), 7 lapis lazuli gemstones (10 gp each), ,
CR 11–16 with 2 , , or
Treasure 2,000 gp, 3 pearls (100 gp each), 2 gold ewers (750 gp each), 4 gold necklaces (250 gp each), , ,
CR 17–22 adult gold dragon
Treasure 10,000 gp, 2,000 ep, 4 aquamarine and topaz gemstones (500 gp each), gold noble’s coronet (2,500 gp), platinum-handled ceremonial greatsword (2,500 gp), bolt of cloth of gold (750 gp), 6 +3 , 2 , , (golden lions)
CR 23–30 ; with 2 or ; with 2d8 and or
Treasure 10,000 gp, 20,000 dragon scales of real gold (1 gp each), 8 pearls (100 gp each), 12 sapphires and emeralds (1,000 gp each), , ,
CR 31+ ; with , , , or
Treasure 3,000 pp, 90,000 gp, 10 diamonds and rubies (5,000 gp each), gold and ruby crown (25,000 gp each), of and , ,
Dragons include red and gold dragons, which are huge reptilian fire-breathers that number among the world’s most dangerous monsters. This type includes, which breathe killing frost, as well as smaller reptilian creatures related to true dragons, such as .