Last Updated on February 1, 2023
There are two kinds of people in this world: dungeons… and dragons. Okay, maybe I’m using that phrase wrong. Either way, one of the most iconic pieces of D&D is the dragons that make up half of its namesake. So, what better way to celebrate them than with Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons, a book dedicated to all things draconic?
In this article, we’ll be looking into this somewhat newer piece of 5e literature, discussing its contents, and deciding whether or not you should add it to your shelf.
- Fizban provides dragon-related content for players and DMs, making it a sort of “everything” guide (like the works of Tasha or Xanathar) that is primarily concerned with dragons.
- This is perhaps the best example of singular purpose within 5e literature, meaning the creators were able to focus on quality rather than quality.
- New options introduced in this book range from decent to superb, but more importantly, all of them include great discussion.
What Is Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons?
Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons is a supplementary sourcebook that focuses exclusively on dragons. Of course, this doesn’t mean you’ll only find creatures with the Dragon creature type. Instead, you’ll find magic items, character options, adventure inspiration, and more so long as they are related to dragons.
Relating this to other 5e content, it definitely feels like it would be classified as a bestiary. The Monster Manual, Volo’s Guide to Monsters, and Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes all offer additional information beyond the monsters they present but are primarily focused on being a collection of stat blocks and creature descriptions.
To that same effect, roughly one-third of FToD is a bestiary. It’s the other two-thirds of the book that make it a bit harder to define. The sheer amount of content is impressive since we get to see everything from character subclasses to adventure creation. In that sense, the first two-thirds feel as much like the DMG as anything could.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what this book is. What matters is the quality of the content within it. Fortunately, that’s mostly pretty great stuff.
Keeping the content within this book focused on all things draconic means that there’s plenty of space to elaborate.
The whole book gets to feel like a cohesive product rather than the scribblings of a madman burdened with knowledge (looking at you, MotM). Concepts are (mostly) fully explained and developed rather than thrown in with minimal concern to the point they could be missed (ahem, Owlin in Curriculum of Chaos).
What’s in Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons?
Within the pages of Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons, you’ll find quite a lot of different content. Oh, and did you know part of that is going to be dragons? Yeah, we’ve basically covered this already, but the new options in FToD are all about dragons.
More specifically though, this book is broken down into a few different chapters.
- Character Creation – New subraces of dragonborn, two new draconic subclass options, three draconic feats, and a nice random table to give characters some sort of draconic tie. These options by no means get the depth of description that character options received in the PHB, but this isn’t solely a player-focused book, so we can excuse that.
- Dragon Magic – Spells, magic items, dragon hoard items, and draconic gifts. This chapter provides some impressive ways to extend the magic of dragons beyond just characters that are intimately connected to dragons in some way.
- Dragons in Play – This is the big one. This chapter, intended for the Dungeon Master alone, is devoted to teaching us effective ways to include dragons in our adventures and campaigns. From small appearances to full-fledged campaign villains, dragons can be used to drive the plot.
- Lairs and Hoards – These topics already receive a good bit of attention in the Monster Manual’s dragon section, but now we get much more information on how to build a lair, fill it with a hoard, and make it truly interesting. You’ll go from some cave full of gold to Smaug’s inhabitance in the Lonely Mountain.
- Draconomicon – This chapter gives us real distinctions between the different types of dragons that goes far beyond just physical appearance. It teaches you how to create a dragon of any type and how to tie it into your adventure.
- Bestiary – Lastly, we come to a bestiary. This is full of just about any creature that’s even tangentially related to dragons from Dracolich’s to Animated Breath and from Dragonbone Golems to Sea Serpents.
Should You Buy Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons?
This book just requires you to answer a simple question. Do you like dragons? If you do and if you want to include them in your adventure on a scale that’s more than just in passing, then yes, you should definitely pick up this book.
Recent WotC products haven’t all been spectacular, but there are some that stand out. In my opinion, Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons might be one of the best (non-adventure) products out there because it does something so well. It sets out to cover a single topic and does so with as much elaboration as necessary to really answer your questions as a player or DM.
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As a kid, I was often told to get my head out of the clouds and to stop living in a fantasy world. That never really jived with me, so I decided to make a living out of games, stories, and all sorts of fantastical works. Now, as an adult, I aspire to remind people that sometimes a little bit of fantasy is all you need when life gets to be too much.