Boasting shining, golden claws and crimson robes and smelling of smoke and ash, the bipedal dragon strode through the burning city, pointing its golden claw at certain homes and businesses. In each place, the soldiers found golden plunder to load on the wagons.
Large dragon, lawful evil
Armor Class 16 (natural armor)
Hit Points 136 (16d10 + 48)
Speed 30 ft., fly 50 ft.
|17 (+3)||10 (+0)||17 (+3)||12 (+1)||12 (+1)||18 (+4)|
Saving Throws Strength +7, Dexterity +4, Wisdom +5
Skills Perception +5
Damage Vulnerabilities cold
Damage Resistances lightning; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Damage Immunities fire, poison
Condition Immunities charmed, paralyzed, exhaustion, poisoned, stunned, unconscious
Senses darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 15
Languages Common, Draconic, Infernal
Challenge 12 (8,400 XP)
- Blood Frenzy. The herald of fire has advantage on melee attack rolls against any creature that doesn’t have all its hp.
- Hidden Herald. The herald of fire can use its action to polymorph into a Medium dragonborn, Medium human, Small kobold, or back into its true draconic humanoid form. In each form, its eyes glow with magical fire and it wears a silver sword, revealing its identity as a herald. Its statistics, other than its size, are the same in each form. Any equipment it is wearing or carrying, other than the silver sword, transforms with it. It reverts to its true form if it dies.
- Legendary Resistance (3/day). If the herald fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead.
- Magic Weapons. The herald’s weapon attacks are magical.
- Scales of Justice. At the start of each of the herald’s turns, each creature within 30 feet of it must succeed on a DC 16 Charisma saving throw or speak only the truth until the start of the herald’s next turn while within 30 feet of the herald.
- Treasure Sense. The herald can pinpoint, by scent, the location of precious metals and stones, such as coins and gems, within 60 feet of it.
- Multiattack. The herald of fire makes two fire claw attacks. If both attacks hit the same target, the target ignites. Until a creature takes an action to douse the fire, the target takes 7 (2d6) fire damage at the start of each of its turns.
- Fire Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (2d8 + 3) slashing damage plus 7 (2d6) fire damage.
- Fiery Lance (Recharge 5–6). The herald magically shoots fire in a 60-foot line that is 5 feet wide. Each creature in that line must make a DC 16 Strength saving throw. On a failure, a target takes 42 (12d6) fire damage and, if it is Huge or smaller, is pushed up to 15 feet away from the herald. On a success, a target takes half the damage and isn’t pushed.
The herald of fire can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. The herald regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.
- Fiery Claw. The herald makes one fiery claw attack.
- Detect. The herald makes a Wisdom (Perception) check.
- Immolate Foe (Costs 2 Actions). The herald of fire calls down searing, crimson fire in a 10-foot-radius, 40-foot-high cylinder centered on a point the herald can see within 120 feet of it. When a creature enters the area for the first time on a turn or starts its turn there, it is engulfed in flames and must make a DC 16 Dexterity saving throw. The creature takes 14 (4d6) fire damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. Flammable objects in the area that aren’t being worn or carried ignite. The pillar of fire lasts until the herald uses this legendary action again or until the herald dies.
From time to time, the gods send various emissaries and messengers out into the world. These Heralds have great power and a clear mission to enforce their creator’s edicts and spread dogma in a concrete way.
The herald of fire is a living embodiment of fiery justice and burnt sacrifices to the draconic gods. In most cases, the herald appears when some great sacrilege has been committed against the faith of fire, such as the withholding of taxes and tribute, or the slaughter of dragons and their kin, or desecration of a temple.
Fiery Eyes and Magical Sword. Though the herald can assume the shape of a dragonborn, human, or kobold, it always has eyes filled with leaping flames, no matter its guise. This is far more obvious by night than in daylight. The herald often carries a magical sword of truth. It rarely uses this weapon in battle, for it is made of soft silver and inlaid with mithral and gold. However, all those near the sword find it quite difficult to lie.
Quick to Anger. While a herald of fire does seek justice and tribute for the dragon gods, it is known for its propensity to anger at slight provocations. In many cases, its anger leads it to shout, stamp its clawed feet, or smash objects around it. In a few cases, it performs immediate and even fatal judgment on the source of its annoyance. Afterwards, it generally claims to have acted entirely within the law and dares others to gainsay it.
Creature Codex. © 2018 Open Design LLC; Authors Wolfgang Baur, Dan Dillon, Richard Green, James Haeck, Chris Harris, Jeremy Hochhalter, James Introcaso, Chris Lockey, Shawn Merwin, and Jon Sawatsky.