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In D&D 5e, Tomb of Annihilation includes Dragonbait, a saurial. This is a race that I have gathered in my online research existed in previous editions of D&D, but besides the slivers of information included on Dragonbait, to the best of my knowledge 5e does not have much to say about them.

I'm interested in learning more about this race from previous editions. What source books (or magazines of whatever) from previous editions would I best look into in order to do that? I believe it's likely to be 2e or 3.Xe material, but I still don't know the names of the books/magazines to look into.

Note that I'm only interested in lore, not information on mechanics, stats, gameplay, etc. I'm not interested in books that only describe gameplay information.

In this case, lore includes things like lifespan, behaviour, habitat, religion, etc (some of this I've found on the Forgotten Realms wiki, but it doesn't go into much detail, for example it doesn't mention their lifespan).

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The 2e sourcebook The Complete Book of Humanoids is the earliest intro to Saurials that I can find. It includes character creation rules with lifespans and height/weight ranges.

This handbook describes in detail over 20 humanoid races that can be run as player characters - from mischevious pixies to stubborn minotaurs, from the lizardlike saurial to the savage half-ogre - and many more in between. In addition to many new character types, this handbook contains new proficiencies, humanoid kits, unusual equipment, and a few new surprises that will open worlds of adventure within any ongoing campaign.

A search on DMsGuild for "Saurial" shows a couple of other likely 2e sourcebooks with Saurials. The Monstrous Compendium writeup references Saurials and the Finder's Stone Trilogy specifically. The product page for the Book of Lairs also mentions that saurials have a close connection to the Forgotten Realms.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jun 12 at 1:33
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I cannot speak as to its canonicity, since it's literature and not sourcebooks, but Dragonbait and saurials feature in the TSR novel Song of the Saurials. You could certainly learn something about saurial culture etc. from it.

Dragonbait himself is also present in Azure Bonds; together with The Wyvern's Spur, these three books form the Finder's Stone trilogy (Song of the Saurials being the 3rd book thereof).

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The Forgotten Realms wiki page on Saurials cites a "web expansion" for the Serpent Kingdoms book from D&D 3.5e, titled "Saurials: More Lizardkin", by Darrin Drader and Sean K Reynolds. It's an 8 page free-to-download PDF file which is mainly lore with some combat stats thrown in.

According to this document, Dragon magazine #292 also contains a description of Saurials, but I don't know how descriptive it is.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ @Pleasestopbeingevil if there is, I'm not sure what it is? I don't own the book, but it's published by WoTC and the web expansion on Saurials is literally a supplement on saurial lore, which seems to be what OP is looking for. \$\endgroup\$ – wz-billings Jun 12 at 1:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pleasestopbeingevil So you know, the Web enhancement is 8 pages, less than half of it monster stats, and the rest fluff that addresses exactly what the asker wants—saurials in the Realms. You can, of course, vote however you want, but to downvote this suggestion without having examined the material seems unfair. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jun 12 at 1:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pleasestopbeingevil regardless of how well you think it's written, it is literally what OP asked for in the question--a source of canonical Saurial lore. \$\endgroup\$ – wz-billings Jun 12 at 1:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ I like this answer, and have upvoted it, but I found the Dragon magazine #292 to be the more useful resource here, which is essentially the information from 2e reprinted for 3.Xe; hence I've accepted the other answer that gives the original 2e sources, but thank you for your answer as well; I did find your answer and the sources you pointed me towards useful. \$\endgroup\$ – NathanS Jun 12 at 20:09

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