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Episode 6 of the Rise of Tiamat adventure (chapter 14 in the combined Tyranny of Dragons book), "Metallic Dragons, Arise", has cover art featuring 3 metallic dragons.

Art depicting a gold dragon, an unidentified dragon with white, blue, and purple shades of skin, and a silver dragon

The art (full-resolution image here) depicts a gold dragon (the big one on the left), an unknown dragon that I'm trying to identify (the second one), and a silver dragon (the third one, with a punk-style crest on its head).

Which type is the second dragon here?

It looks very similar to silver one by its colors and scales and wings, but it has no punk-styled crest on its head which is so typical for silver dragons.

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    \$\begingroup\$ For reference, the artist seems to be Marcel Mercado - he does have a contact form on his website, if someone wants to ask him about the piece. ...I also found the same art piece on his deviantArt page, so I went ahead and asked the artist in a comment there. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jun 24, 2021 at 21:38
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    \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast Thank you! I asked him too! \$\endgroup\$
    – Ohar
    Commented Jun 24, 2021 at 21:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ What’s the big ?item? the group is handling? Is this supposed to be some big horn? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael
    Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 13:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Michael It is called the Draakhorn. "The Draakhorn was a gift from Tiamat in the war between dragons and giants. It was once the horn of her ancient red dragon consort, Ephelomon, that she gave to dragonkind to help them in their war against the giants." \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 14:48

4 Answers 4

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Hey everyone this is Marcel Mercado, the artist behind the art. As many have pointed out, that is another silver dragon. The brief called for one Gold dragon, and two silver dragon. Quadratic Wizard nailed it on the head.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Awesome--thank you for stopping in to provide an authoritative answer! And for all the great artwork! \$\endgroup\$
    – nitsua60
    Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 14:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPGSE, Marcel, thanks for dropping by. 😊 \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 14:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ Marcel, could you please tell us why you decided to depict it without its very typical punk-styled chest on its head? Thank you again! \$\endgroup\$
    – Ohar
    Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 18:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ohar The crest is there, it's just difficult to see, since the view is almost straight down from above, so we're seeing nearly the smallest possible cross section. \$\endgroup\$
    – 8bittree
    Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 19:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ohar If you zoom in on the full res image, it's perfectly visible: i.sstatic.net/Z0Mjn.png \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 26, 2021 at 19:13
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It appears to be another silver dragon.

If you look closely, the middle dragon does have the crest on its head; it's just viewed at an oblique angle. Look how it flows down the full length of the dragon's neck and on down the full length of its body to the tip of its tail, as it can be seen to do on the silver dragon in the D&D 3.5 Monster Manual.

Silver dragon from Monster Manual v3.5.

It also has the swept-back horn shape shown in the Monster Manual, although the face looks unusual because we don't normally see a silver dragon from such an angle, making its characteristic round nose difficult to identify. Still, note the appearance of the wattle below its chin, again consistent with silver dragons, and the steely pupil-less orbs of its eyes, consistent with descriptions of older silver dragons (although this point is true for other metallic species). The odd markings or plates on the dragon's horns appear to be particular to this individual silver dragon or this artist's depiction of silver dragons, given the Monster Manual's description of "silvery plates on their heads".

We can see its characteristic vertical ridge which extends the full length of its tail, as we see in the other silver dragon in the picture, and it has flowing wings that are very similar to those of the other silver dragon, tipped with similar talons.

Given the artwork's appearance in Episode 6: Metallic Dragons, Arise, describing the Draakhorn whose sound calls metallic dragons, it seems likely that all dragons depicted are of some metallic type, i.e. one of the five metallic dragon types rather than some more obscure true dragon species (e.g. adamantine dragon, steel dragon etc). Given the coloration, then, it can only be a silver dragon. Given the artist's overall attention to detail in this piece, I am skeptical that it could be a brass, copper, or bronze dragon painted incorrectly.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Oh, I see it now. There is a "mohawk" fin on its head and neck, it's just positioned so it looks like a mirror of the scales on the side of the neck, and the tail is sort of cranked sideways. The silver's "ears" have the same sort of ribbed finlike structure that made me think 'brass', too. I buy it. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 13:48
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It's hard to be sure because the colouring doesn't really match anything except another silver dragon.

But I believe it is a copper dragon, based on the way the horns lie back against the head. Assuming the drawing matches the possible descriptions of the dragons that can be met in that chapter of the adventure this would make it Tazmikella, a female copper dragon.

This is a close up of the dragon from the image you posted:

enter image description here

And this is a depiction of the metallic dragons, in order, Brass, Bronze, Copper, Gold, Silver Dragons

enter image description here

I think the copper dragon is the best match when comparing the crests and it was just coloured incorrectly/poorly.

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    \$\begingroup\$ There is a silver dragon crest, it's just seen from the top so it is easy to miss. \$\endgroup\$
    – Rad80
    Commented Jun 25, 2021 at 6:23
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I'll leave this answer here for historical interest, but after reading Quadratic Wizard's answer, I'm convinced they're right and it is in fact a silver dragon, and you just can't see the mohawk and muzzle shape because of the weird angle of the head.


Given the very large head-fins and the wings that attach all the way along the dragon's sides and tail, I'd say that's supposed to be a brass dragon, and it was miscolored as a silver.

Brass Dragon (Monster Manual 5e)

The facial flanges here are pretty wide compared to the Rise of Tiamat art, but with its head tilted down like that, they'd look a lot like horns. The real giveaway is the all-the-way-down wings with ribbing along the tail, which is clearly visible in the art you're asking about.

Also note the chin-spikes, which while not entirely unique to the brass dragon, are at least more evidence in that direction when combined with the tail.

I almost said it's a copper, because of the large hornlike structures, but the tail is completely wrong for a copper dragon, and on looking at the close-up, I think it's clear that there's more structure to the head than just the two large horns of a copper. They look more like the brass's fins seen at a very oblique angle.

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