Dragon-blood talisman

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Version 0.31: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.

For the spell present in 0.30, see Dragon Form (spell).

A vial of pure dragon-blood, crystallized over many years. Transforms the user into a mighty fire-breathing dragon. The user becomes highly resistant to fire and resistant to poison, but vulnerable to cold. Shapeshifting skill increases damage from claws and armour from scales. While transformed, any equipped weapons and armour are melded.

For Draconians:

Transforms the user into a mighty dragon, increasing the power of any innate breath attacks. The user retains their innate colour, and becomes resistant to poison.

Dragon-blood talisman.png A dragon-blood talisman is a talisman that changes you into Dragon Form.

Useful Info

When eVoked, a dragon-blood talisman turns you into Dragon Form, which lasts until you end the form. Entering or exiting a form takes 5 turns.

Dragon Form has the following effects:

Combat Bonuses

  • HP Bonus: 150% HP
  • Innate AC: Linearly scales from the following points, rounding down:
    • Below minimum: 1 AC (0 skill) - 12 AC (16 skill)
    • Above minimum: 12 AC (16 skill) - 18 AC (25 skill) ; +1 AC per 1.33 levels
  • Unarmed Combat: Linearly scales from the following points (including bonus from Claws):
    • Below minimum: 9 damage (0 skill) - 24 damage (16 skill)
    • Above minimum: 24 damage (16 skill) - 33 damage (25 skill) ; +1 damage per level
  • Two auxiliary attacks: Bite 5 (11 dmg) & Tail slap 3 (6 dmg).
  • Breathe Fire: Active ability. Launch a piercing, range-5 bolt of fire, creating a flame cloud where it lands. No cost, but has a cooldown of a few turns. Damage = 3d(4 + 2*XL/3).[1][2]
  • Stat Bonus: +10 strength.




Dragon Form has a minimum Shapeshifting skill of 16, below which you get an HP penalty, and the AC / Unarmed bonuses scale down. It has a maximum skill of 25, where skill has no further impact.


If you are a Draconian, Dragon Form has the following modifiers:

  • The AC bonus from scales is retained, but Dragon Form itself grants 6 less AC.[3]
  • You retain your natural breath weapon, or lack therof, instead of Breathe Fire.
  • Instead of gaining rF++ and rC-, you retain your natural elemental resistances, or lack thereof. Red and white draconians gain rF++/rC- and rF-/rC++, respectively. You still get rPois, no matter the colour.


Dragon Form should be treated like the 'glass cannon' of talisman forms, much less durable than the +50% HP would make you think. The reduction to EV from size, lack of shield, loss of all armour slots, and relatively low AC (compared to Statue Form or a heavy armour character) seriously lowers your survivability. That being said: with 24 base damage, plus aux attacks, added strength, and bonuses from Unarmed Combat skill, you'll hit like a truck. It's strong even without much UC skill.

Although Dragon Form melds staves and int-raising gear, you can use magic however you please. Since you won't have armour or shield encumbrance, it might be even easier to cast spells.

Compared to other forms:

  • Statue Form: Statue Form offers better defense: it has much better AC, does not reduce EV, and allows use of shields. Dragon Form, meanwhile, offers much better damage/turn. Note that, due to the rC- and restricted slots, being in Dragon Form makes it hard to get resistances.
  • Storm Form: In general, Storm Form offers similar damage/turn and effective defense, but with the addition of cleaving. Dragon Form takes less skill, though. Being a dragon is usually enough to handle orbs of fire, and if you can do that, you can win a 3-rune game. Thus, Dragon Form allows you to invest XP into other skills (without lacking in power).

Tips & Tricks

  • Support magic, like Ozocubu's Armour or Vhi's Electric Charge, can be very useful to have. Since you're using Unarmed Combat, Manifold Assault only hits 1/2 targets, but it can still be worth using.
  • Don't forget about the fire breath, a free, moderately powerful ranged attack. It creates a flame cloud on landing; aim with f . to place the cloud on a specific enemy. Using flame breath at melee range means your enemy will be stuck inside the cloud for a while.
  • If you can manage to get Dragon Form by the Lair rune branches, the ability to fly and poison resistance are helpful there. Just watch out for silver javelins in Shoals (and cold attacks, like bog body's Bolt of Cold and merfolk aquamancer's Throw Icicle, if vulnerable).

Dragon Form
Dragon form standard.png
Red White Grey Black Pale Mottled Purple Green Yellow
Dragon form red.png Dragon form white.png Dragon form grey.png Dragon form black.png Dragon form pale.png Dragon form mottled.png Dragon form purple.png Dragon form green.png Dragon form yellow.png


  • Dragon-blood talismans were introduced in 0.31, along with talismans themselves. This form was previously implemented as a level 7 Transmutations spell, Dragon Form. Previously, Dragon Form had 38 base damage and a flat 16 AC.


Talisman Beast FormFlux FormBlade FormMaw FormSerpent FormDragon FormStatue FormDeath FormStorm Form
Bad Forms Bat FormFungus FormPig FormTree FormWisp Form
Divine Shadow Form