Author Topic: On Kobolds and True Dragons  (Read 34184 times)

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awaken DM golem

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #160 on: July 20, 2010, 09:36:23 PM »
As TML said PaO, there's also a very limited set of "Any" feat slots, out there.
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weenog

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #161 on: July 20, 2010, 09:37:56 PM »
That's not so much a problem with Dragonwrought as it is a problem with the wording on the Rogue's bonus feats feature.

I think it's also a problem of giving true dragons powers and trying to define them as a group when there are so many different kinds.  How much of this mess could be avoided if every dragon had a True flag that was either on or off, and couldn't be changed by magic, feat, or anything else short of a total and permanent race change, I wonder.
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JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #162 on: July 20, 2010, 09:46:17 PM »
I think it's also a problem of giving true dragons powers and trying to define them as a group when there are so many different kinds.  How much of this mess could be avoided if every dragon had a True flag that was either on or off, and couldn't be changed by magic, feat, or anything else short of a total and permanent race change, I wonder.

There are straight up lists in Draconomicon and Dragons of Krynn that actually effectively do this... they just say "all these are True Dragons."  That makes it a lot easier.  Unfortunately, these lists don't help for anything published after these books, which is why that doesn't just handle Dragonwrought Kobolds.

And it would certainly be nice if all True Dragons just had that as a subtype, so they were listed as Dragon (True) just like you can have Outsider (Native).  But surely you don't expect clear rules from WotC do you...?

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JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #163 on: July 20, 2010, 09:48:56 PM »
I'm saying by your definition and reasoning, they're true, but so is anything else that cares to be, which makes your definition bullplop for just lumping kobolds in with true dragons.  And no, you really don't need prerequisites to get class bonus feats unless the class specifically says you do.

I've put that argument about class bonus feats in a separate thread, and it can be debated there.  But I never accept the argument "that can't be RAW because that's broken."  If that argument worked, Planar Binding couldn't summon Effreetis.  But it can, you just have to house rule to stop your players getting endless wishes. 

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You could say only racial bonus feats (with the exception of those that explicitly require prerequisites) ignoring prerequisites is the intention, and I'd agree with you, but the rules don't say that.  You made that up.  Sort of like you got after SorO_Lost for doing.

Again, please see the other thread.  I actually showed where they did that very thing by RAW, but it's a matter of context.  I only work off rules quotes.  I don't make things up based on how I want things to be.

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weenog

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #164 on: July 20, 2010, 09:50:11 PM »
And it would certainly be nice if all True Dragons just had that as a subtype, so they were listed as Dragon (True) just like you can have Outsider (Native).
  I was actually thinking it should be handled like this myself, at first, but subtype changing is (relatively) easy to come by.
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JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #165 on: July 20, 2010, 09:54:16 PM »
In the end wishes and the like can do anything anyway.  It's not impossible to just turn into a Steel Dragon or something.  That's more of a problem with Polymorph and similar abilities than with the True Dragon definition.

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #166 on: July 21, 2010, 12:04:23 AM »
Well that's interesting, and also somewhat disturbing.  It seems an awakened dog Rogue 10 can use the rogue bonus feat for which it need not meet the prerequisites to grab Dragonwrought.  According to the feat, this awakened dog is of the Dragon type and is a kobold.
But if the dog took the Dragonwrought feat wouldn't he longer be a dog, but would instead be a dragonwrought kobold, losing all his dog racials and shifting form to a kobold?
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carnivore

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #167 on: July 21, 2010, 03:44:51 PM »
i dont know why i missed the table 3.2, or the section before it ... i retract my previous position .... Dragonwrought Kobolds are indeed True Dragons(really weak Dragons... but still true Dragons) they simply dont gain as much as other True Dragons do from age ....

 :D


SorO_Lost

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #168 on: July 21, 2010, 05:10:23 PM »
Somewhere in you post you complain and ran some tandom on me saying useless towards something about simply having age categories. Everyone has age categories and everyone isn't a true dragon. Inserting DM's comment? See below.

I've never said newest only applies.
I tackled every separate method you use.

When someone refutes your plugged in intent you say dragon magic (newest).
When someone refutes newest you use I'm innocent, ignore, strawmans, spoke of flavor, insulted and finally start talking about exceptions.
When someone points out exceptions don't work you insert intent.
And loop till people get tired.

The main thing here is that we have two spots where it's critical for mechanical rules purposes that True Dragon be defined, because we have a mechanical ability that only works with True Dragons.
And what about Draconic Vampirism(DoK) a feat for True Dragons killing True Dragons? What about Advancing Dragons(Draco) where true dragons gain HD as a result of aging? Or magic, or size, etc.

Dragonwrought Kobolds being Chromatic or Metallic is on page 39 ("Dragonwrought kobolds with chromatic dragon ancestry multiply this number by 5.  Dragonwrought kobolds with metallic dragon ancestry multiply this number by 10."). <snip> Sorry, but Half Dragons aren't True Dragons.
Why not you branch into obtaining a feat to gain a level of spellcasting in a class but don't go into why a Half-Dragon can't. What about a Half-Dragon Rakasha, they also have virtual levels of sorcerer spellcasting just like kobolds, and their linage if a thousand times more pure.

Beating you to the punch about your response which will be about dragon magic. Well then drop the flavor argument and stop reciting it.

One two skip a few...

New low from you here.  I don't even know what you're referencing here, you're just making personal attacks.  This is usually the last refuge of someone who no longer has an argument but just wants to win.
It's not winning I want. My personally attacks are really just a lack of being subtle, which isn't something I do anyway, and are a response from yours. You disguise it as your arguments are stupid, stop posting and read the books, your trying to hard it's embarrassing, you ignore rules but I better because I claim to read them all, and finally trolling for smooches. Yeah I really don't use innuendos with the lack of tones and body language being able to be used nor do I hide behind them.

1. Actually, I never mentioned Fang dragons, that was someone else.  I didn't even see Chaos Dragons getting mentioned directly.  2. The main thing here is that there are a few given straight forward definitions (Dragons of Krynn, Dragon Magic, Draconomicon side bar).  Then there's a bunch of random descriptions throughout the books.  The definitions actually match up to all True Dragons.  The descriptions do not. 3. Your argument of "Kobolds do not match up to some of the True Dragon descriptions, therefor they are not True Dragons" fails because that same argument would eliminate virtually all actual True Dragons."  When your logical train leads to a false conclusion, it must be false.  But my logic, that True Dragons are all creatures who follow the definition of True Dragons, actually works.  All listed True Dragons meet the given definitions of True Dragons.  Kobolds also fit this.  That's the ??? you seem to have missed.
Finally something worth reading.
1. Who cares who mentioned what dragon? It is following your concept, stay on topic.
2. What what? Every True Dragon matches up to the True Dragon definitions but every True Dragon doesn't match up to True Dragon descriptions.
See what I mean? You run off on tangent lines like that that serve no real purpose but you claim it matters. Why don't you try explaining things like that instead of trying to come up with some contradictory thing others are supposed to get and spend less time swapping about methods to make claims.
3. Another subtle put down to me. You jump right into using exceptions and further claim I am using them.
No I'm don't, please read the post and stop trying to hard, also insults are a sign of being on your last straw.
Anyway, I don't use exceptions to prove anything, like wise see Method #2 where it highlights that the exception method doesn't clear enough for kobolds anyway.

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Rules Compendium, Page 5, Order of Rules Application

All of this is irrelevant,
Here's where you and I differ.  I'm not calling rules "useless" when they're clear.  :)

You're still missing the main point, which is that there are definitions of True Dragons (Draconomicon side bar, Dragons of Kyrnn feat, Dragon Magic Dragonpact section) and there are descriptions of True Dragons (MM1, Dragons of Kyrnn in another section, etc).  The former straight up says "this is what a True Dragon is" and that actually does apply to all True Dragons.  The latter says "this is what some people know about True Dragons" or "True Dragons are generally like X" and does not match up to all True Dragons... usually in fact they don't match up to even the majority.
Descriptions are the definitions. At least you cleared up what you meant before though.

Where are Spellcasting rule for each class defined? In the spellcasting descriptions.
Where is kobolds gaining a level of sorcerer spellcasting defined? In Greater Draconic Rite's description.
Where is bullrush defined? In it's description.
Where is raging defined? In it's description.
Where is creating a dragonpact defined? In it's description.
Where is True Dragon defined? Where JaronK says it is, or so he says.
Worded like that it comes off like a good point, but not one I'd use outside of pointing the absurdity of what JaronK is trying to tell me.

Draconomicon says what a dragon is and provides the highest degree of description short of the monsters them selves making it according to the DMG/RC the priority. Dragon Magic's comment does augment that but does not replace it. And while I won't argue it, rules for who you can create a dragon pact are way outside the same activity of act of defining what a true dragon is.

Your current claim is that True Dragons essentially are just anything on a list that says they're True Dragons, since you would, by your ruling, eliminate Fang Dragons and Lung Dragons and Chaos Dragons and Planar Dragons and Gem Dragons
Proof of ignoring. Monster descriptions > general type descriptions. See all my posts because I can remain consistent.

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His method, find an exception to ignore it, isn't enough to work either.
No, it's to show the problem with using descriptions instead of definitions, by showing that doing so leads to a false conclusion (that a known True Dragon is Lesser).  The definitions never have this problem.
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Every True Dragon listed as such gains Dragon HD Size Increases as a direct result of aging.
But this is never given as a rule anywhere.
Neither is a rule saying Kobolds are True Dragons. Guess you can't keep following up on that route huh.

Three four skip some more.

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Take for example "In addition, dragons gain power and abilities as they age" To me I see they must gain new abilities not simply increase exsisting ones. Kobolds are out.
See?  You just made up a new definition.
Nah, I had that one long before you made up yours, yours is the new one to me.
Also I see you edited my quote without any notation of doing so. Perfect example of that method in action.

Evidently the ability to take Epic feats early isn't an ability.
No more than being alive is. Follow up on it if you want, it's a dead end. Either you're wanting to define the word ability there and word arguments never bold well or you can lose to the D&D terms which define the ability scores & special abilities which in turn lists ex, su, sp and the like with no concern about qualifying for feats.

Five six to lazy to keep posting quote tags.
Gaining a level of sorcerer spellcasting != innate spellcasting. Being granted a level of sorcerer spellcasting as if you have taken a level in sorcerer is much like PrC spellcasting advancement. Ok it's the same exact thing but still there is a difference in it being a feat instead of class level. Innate spellcasting may or may not require somatic components depending on the creature (MM>Special Abilities>Spells), Draco further states True Dragon innate casting ignore material components.

Seven eight forgot taking to him.

Sor0, give me a full list of what you believe to be the necessary criteria for a true dragon with text citations.
Mine? In which way, thanks to the cop out for authors simply publishing something saying it is a true dragon works.

Now if you were to ask if I were to design a dragon or several, which abilities would I say were required. I'd avoid the cop out and I'd have to include; Gaining HD directly from aging, Innate Spellcasting gained at some age category, Frightful Presence gained somewhere at or past young adult, Spell Resistance probably at the same time it gains Damage Reduction. Blindsight, Keen Senses, Wings & a fly speed, and a breath weapon along with immunity to whatever it is. Like a breath weapon that bestows negative levels would mean protection from energy drain. Only they last few are every made an exception to in the D&D books but I have a little better quality control here.

How about I just go with something simple for a definition? True dragons gain power and abilities as they age though their aging categories. It don't even have to be DR/SR/FP that it gains at young adult+ as long as it's something, they can skip having wings or a breath weapon for something else as a change up. But the moment you drop that age gives HD, new abilities, size changes, and so on you have nothing more than a lesser dragon. Yes, this only applies to creatures with the Dragon type and is 100% accurate in all the D&D rules including the exception idea. It wouldn't work in this thread as a rule though. True dragons gain power and abilities as they age though their aging categories. would be quoted the the poster would say his intent trumps mine and ignore the text afterwards. Take the recent use of saying all dragons can gain the archtypes even though the passage talks about true dragons. You can say your intent in the same paragraph and someone will ignore it.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2010, 05:23:02 PM by SorO_Lost »
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JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #169 on: July 21, 2010, 05:54:06 PM »
Somewhere in you post you complain and ran some tandom on me saying useless towards something about simply having age categories. Everyone has age categories and everyone isn't a true dragon. Inserting DM's comment? See below.

Not everyone has 12 age categories.  Furthermore, there are clearly two types of age categories in the game.  Disguise and Alter Self talk about age categories, and there's the dragon ones.  We have an entry that clarifies which one we're talking about.

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I've never said newest only applies.
I tackled every separate method you use.

When someone refutes your plugged in intent you say dragon magic (newest).

I never speak to intent as an argument for RAW.  I have only stated that I think it's likely Races of the Dragon intended Kobolds to be True Dragons, but that True Dragons were never intended to have Epic Feats or Sovereign Archtypes.  That's a guess at RAI, not an argument for RAW.  Note how it's different from what I'm saying RAW is (namely that they get both).

I also never say Dragon Magic over the others.  I use all three given definitions together (Draconomicon, Dragon Magic, Dragons of Krynn).  If you look at all of my posts you'll find this is true.  I have NEVER used the newest argument.  That's a strawman. 

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When someone refutes newest you use I'm innocent, ignore, strawmans, spoke of flavor, insulted and finally start talking about exceptions.

No, that's you.  YOU have made up strawmen like "newest."  I have never said anything about innocence.  You have been firing off insults.  And so on.  And no one ever "refuted" this newest argument, because I never made it (it's a strawman).

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When someone points out exceptions don't work you insert intent.
And loop till people get tired.

I never use intent as an argument for RAW, only a tangent of "this is probably what they're aiming for, but it's not RAW."

Your entire argument is nothing but strawmen, as shown clearly here.  I summarized my argument for you quite nicely and it didn't have anything you state here.

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And what about Draconic Vampirism(DoK) a feat for True Dragons killing True Dragons?

The one that states a True Dragon is a Dragon with Age Categories?  I've been quoting it directly.  It refers to dragon HD, but does not give that as a requirement for being a True Dragon.  It DOES say the requirement for being a True Dragon is a Dragon with Age Categories.  So... yeah.  I don't ignore entries, I just look at what they say.

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What about Advancing Dragons(Draco) where true dragons gain HD as a result of aging? Or magic, or size, etc.

Read it again.  Does it state that to be a True Dragon you need to gain HD as a result of aging?  It does not.

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Dragonwrought Kobolds being Chromatic or Metallic is on page 39 ("Dragonwrought kobolds with chromatic dragon ancestry multiply this number by 5.  Dragonwrought kobolds with metallic dragon ancestry multiply this number by 10."). <snip> Sorry, but Half Dragons aren't True Dragons.
Why not you branch into obtaining a feat to gain a level of spellcasting in a class but don't go into why a Half-Dragon can't. What about a Half-Dragon Rakasha, they also have virtual levels of sorcerer spellcasting just like kobolds, and their linage if a thousand times more pure.

What is this about a feat to gain spellcasting?  The Draconic Rite is not a feat, it's a racial ability of Kobolds.  And Half Dragon Rakshasa don't have draconic age categories (namely, 12 of them).  Notice how you're trying to use fluff to argue RAW right now ("their linage if a thousand times more pure") which is exactly what you JUST accused me of.  Strawman, then appeal to intent. 

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Beating you to the punch about your response which will be about dragon magic. Well then drop the flavor argument and stop reciting it.

You just made a flavor argument, then told me to stop doing it.  Are you even listening to yourself at this point?  And yes, Dragon Magic tells you why Half Dragon Rakshasa aren't True Dragons.  So does Draconomicon (they don't get more powerful by getting older, nor do they gain new abilities by getting older).  Beating me to the punch by saying "see, I know where the rules tell me I'm wrong" doesn't exactly help your case.

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One two skip a few...

This would be the ignoring you accused me of earlier, right? 

It's not winning I want. My personally attacks are really just a lack of being subtle, which isn't something I do anyway, and are a response from yours.

Here's the insults you accused me of, which you admit to making.  Everything you've accused me of you do yourself (and I don't).

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You disguise it as your arguments are stupid,

I said they were wrong, and quite frankly, your argument about Dragonwrought not being listed in Draconomicon (when it wasn't even released then)  was quite foolish.  You have to know that.  But it's true, I attack your arguments.  You attack me.  Big difference.

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stop posting and read the books,

I never said stop posting.  I encourage everyone to read the source material before debating.

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your trying to hard it's embarrassing, you ignore rules but I better because I claim to read them all, and finally trolling for smooches. Yeah I really don't use innuendos with the lack of tones and body language being able to be used nor do I hide behind them.

What is this trolling for smooches thing?  I think you're reading in a lot that's just not there.

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Finally something worth reading.
1. Who cares who mentioned what dragon? It is following your concept, stay on topic.

You said I mentioned fang dragons.  I didn't.  I corrected you, and now you say who cares? 

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2. What what? Every True Dragon matches up to the True Dragon definitions but every True Dragon doesn't match up to True Dragon descriptions.

Correct, because the descriptions are of True Dragons in general, and the definitions say what they are.  For example, adult humans are 5'-6'2" tall, have five fingers on each hand, and are bipedal.  That's a description.  Does this mean midgets aren't human?  What about polydactyle people?  What about people in wheel chairs?   Those are all still human.  I was giving a general description of humans, not the definition.  Descriptions do not generally include the outliers. 

The descriptions of True Dragons don't match every single True Dragon, and thus cannot be used to eliminate something from the category, just like you can't say midgets aren't human.  A White Dragon doesn't match the description in the Monster Manual of True Dragons, even though it's under the True Dragon category.  Nor do Lung Dragons, Gem Dragons, and Planar Dragons.  But it IS a True Dragon, because it DOES meet the definition... a creature of the Dragon Type that gains more power and abilities as it gets older.  ALL True Dragons meet that.  Tryign to eliminate Kobolds from the category based on the descriptions doesn't work, for the same reason you can't eliminate any of the other outliers by the same method.

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See what I mean? You run off on tangent lines like that that serve no real purpose but you claim it matters. Why don't you try explaining things like that instead of trying to come up with some contradictory thing others are supposed to get and spend less time swapping about methods to make claims.

I thought that was a pretty clear explanation, actually.  And I still haven't swapped methods. 

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3. Another subtle put down to me. You jump right into using exceptions and further claim I am using them.

I don't understand what you're missing here.  The exceptions are demonstrating the problem with attempting to use descriptions to remove members of the True Dragon group.  It shows that your logic leads to a contradiction and is thus false. 

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No I'm don't, please read the post and stop trying to hard, also insults are a sign of being on your last straw.
Anyway, I don't use exceptions to prove anything, like wise see Method #2 where it highlights that the exception method doesn't clear enough for kobolds anyway.

You're refusing to use evidence.  That's the first sign of being wrong.


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Here's where you and I differ.  I'm not calling rules "useless" when they're clear.  :)

Yes, this is where you and I differ.  I'm talking about Dragons, so you're tangenting with Improved Disarm.  Improved Disarm is in no way related to the topic at hand.  How we categorize things is relevant.  What dragons are is relevant.  Improved Disarm... not so much.

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Descriptions are the definitions. At least you cleared up what you meant before though.

False.  If Descriptions were definitions, then White Dragons, Gem Dragons, and Lung Dragons would not be True Dragons, because by definition they would not be.  They'd also not be Lesser Dragons due to Draconomicon, which makes them neither Lesser nor True, and this does not make sense.  Your inability to differenciate descriptions from definitions is the logical flaw that makes your position result in nonsense. 

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Where are Spellcasting rule for each class defined? In the spellcasting descriptions.
Where is kobolds gaining a level of sorcerer spellcasting defined? In Greater Draconic Rite's description.
Where is bullrush defined? In it's description.
Where is raging defined? In it's description.
Where is creating a dragonpact defined? In it's description.
Where is True Dragon defined? Where JaronK says it is, or so he says.
Worded like that it comes off like a good point, but not one I'd use outside of pointing the absurdity of what JaronK is trying to tell me.

Now this is all just nonsense.  Bullrush, for example, does have a definition.  It is also described. 

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Draconomicon says what a dragon is and provides the highest degree of description short of the monsters them selves making it according to the DMG/RC the priority. Dragon Magic's comment does augment that but does not replace it. And while I won't argue it, rules for who you can create a dragon pact are way outside the same activity of act of defining what a true dragon is.

Draconomicon does indeed have a nifty sidebar that defines True Dragons.  It also describes them at other times, but that sidebar says what they are.  And I've been using the definition from that sidebar for ages now.  Note that Draconomicon is also what makes a contradiction in your logic.  It states clearly that Lesser Dragons are those dragons that don't have age categories.  Since Kobolds do have age categories, they CANNOT be Lesser.  Since all Dragons must be Lesser or True, Draconomicon has yet another way of showing this.

If you can't differentiate between definitions and descriptions, Draconomicon becomes contradictory... Kobolds aren't Lesser (they have age categories) and they are True (they gain power and abilities by aging) but there are descriptions that talk about True Dragons being 100ft+ and having innate spellcasting (which Kobolds only sort of have).

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Your current claim is that True Dragons essentially are just anything on a list that says they're True Dragons, since you would, by your ruling, eliminate Fang Dragons and Lung Dragons and Chaos Dragons and Planar Dragons and Gem Dragons
Proof of ignoring. Monster descriptions > general type descriptions. See all my posts because I can remain consistent.

That's not ignoring, it's showing what you're doing.  Lung Dragons do NOT have "True Dragon" anywhere in their monster description.  The only consistency you have is making stuff up at this point, as you just did.  The ONLY things that make Lung Dragons True is their listing in the two lists of True Dragons and the fact that they hit the definitions I've pointed out.

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His method, find an exception to ignore it, isn't enough to work either.
No, it's to show the problem with using descriptions instead of definitions, by showing that doing so leads to a false conclusion (that a known True Dragon is Lesser).  The definitions never have this problem.
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Every True Dragon listed as such gains Dragon HD Size Increases as a direct result of aging.
But this is never given as a rule anywhere.
Neither is a rule saying Kobolds are True Dragons. Guess you can't keep following up on that route huh.

Yes, there IS a rule saying Kobolds are True Dragons.  Dragon Magic, Dragons of Kyrnn, Draconomicon. 

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Three four skip some more.

This would be that ignoring right?

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Take for example "In addition, dragons gain power and abilities as they age" To me I see they must gain new abilities not simply increase exsisting ones. Kobolds are out.
See?  You just made up a new definition.
Nah, I had that one long before you made up yours, yours is the new one to me.
Also I see you edited my quote without any notation of doing so. Perfect example of that method in action.

What?  Yes, you made it up a while ago, congrats.  You're still making stuff up.  And I didn't edit your quote.  I copied it from a larger quote just above, showing context.

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Evidently the ability to take Epic feats early isn't an ability.
No more than being alive is. Follow up on it if you want, it's a dead end. Either you're wanting to define the word ability there and word arguments never bold well or you can lose to the D&D terms which define the ability scores & special abilities which in turn lists ex, su, sp and the like with no concern about qualifying for feats.

Just because qualifying for feats isn't listed as an ability doesn't mean it's not one.  Sneak Attack isn't listed as an ability either.

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Gaining a level of sorcerer spellcasting != innate spellcasting. Being granted a level of sorcerer spellcasting as if you have taken a level in sorcerer is much like PrC spellcasting advancement.

Gaining a level of Sorcerer spellcasting due to your race IS innate spellcasting.  Either way, you're still hitting that contradiction that Kobolds CAN'T be lesser if they have Age Categories (Draconomicon)... even if this logic made sense you'd still hit a fallacy.

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Ok it's the same exact thing but still there is a difference in it being a feat instead of class level.

It's not a feat.  It's a ritual you can only do if you're a Kobold.

JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #170 on: July 21, 2010, 06:10:10 PM »
i dont know why i missed the table 3.2, or the section before it ... i retract my previous position .... Dragonwrought Kobolds are indeed True Dragons(really weak Dragons... but still true Dragons) they simply dont gain as much as other True Dragons do from age ....

 :D




Now just don't abandon your Pixies quite yet, to leave some fun for the rest of us.
 :)


carnivore

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #171 on: July 21, 2010, 06:14:04 PM »
not abandoning Pixies[spoiler]NEVER[/spoiler]  :smirk ... but will admit when i am corrected .... if i see evidence to the contrary i will admit it ....

 :D


awaken DM golem

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #172 on: July 21, 2010, 06:22:46 PM »
I had a hard time finding that old smiley face.
Feeling nostalgic ... (sigh)

JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #173 on: July 21, 2010, 06:48:34 PM »
At least the last post clarified the problem here... some folks don't know the difference between descriptions and definitions.

A definition is a form of description that must describe all members of the set, and not members not of the set.  For example, the definition of an even number is one divisible by 2 such that the result will be an integer.  All even numbers match that definition.  No odd numbers match that exception.  If there was a single number that was even but not divisible by 2, it would not be a definition.

This is why exceptions that SorO keeps ignoring are important... a single exception to the rule means it's not a definition. 

Descriptions aren't so strict.  "Human beings have five fingers on each hand and four limbs" is a valid description of human beings.  But it's not a definition... it describes things that aren't human (like gorillas) and there are some humans that don't fit it (polydactyls, amputees).  Something that describes other things outside the set could be part of a definition, but could not by itself be one.  Something that fails to describe even one member of the set is not a definition.

Note however that D&D has a specific rule that is worth noting here: the specific overrides the general.  As such, all D&D definitions have a built in extra clause "unless the entry says otherwise."  You could have a definition for humanoids that would be perfectly valid, and then have purple worms not match that definition but specifically say they're humanoid, and that would be fine.

In short: If you have properties X, Y, and Z, then you are A is a definition.  A's generally have X is a description.

This is why "True Dragons are Chromatic or Metallic" isn't a definition, but rather a description.  Gem Dragons aren't, therefor it can't be a definition.  "True Dragons have innate spellcasting" isn't a definition either... many things have innate spellcasting that aren't even dragons, and some True Dragons don't have innate spellcasting.  But "True Dragons are creatures of the Dragon Type that have 12 age categories" is a definition.  It's true for all True Dragons, and false for all Lesser Dragons (as well as all non dragons).  "True Dragons are creatures of the Dragon type that have age categories" is only good when we understand the type of age categories they mean (the 12 draconic ones) because technically disguise and alter self refer to the standard PC ages as being "age categories" despite the fact that the ages section doesn't refer to them as such.  That's sloppy writing, since it leads to all kinds of problems (mostly because of what happens with the Draconomicon definition if you read it that way... but even then, you still end up with Kobolds as True.  You just also lump in every other draconic PC  The Draconomicon definition also works nicely.

It's also important to note what Draconomicon says about Lesser Dragons, namely it defines lesser dragons as being creatures of the Dragon type that lack age categories.  You CANNOT be lesser if you have age categories.  That reinforces the idea that age categories are alone what is important, as anything else leads to a logical contradiction

This is why SorO's definition cannot be true... it leads to a logical contradiction to have anything more than age categories.   The only definition of True Dragon that doesn't lead to contradictions is "A True Dragon is a creature of the Dragon type that has 12 age categories."  This uses all listed definitions, located in Draconomicon, Dragon Magic, and Dragons of Kyrnn.  It does NOT use descriptions, as those are not the same as definitions.  SorO's description (not definition) is generally true, as true as my description of humans as four limbed creatures with five fingers per hand.   Unfortunately, no rule actually states what he said.  No rule says you have to gain racial HD or size as you get older to be a True Dragon.  While I can quote the page that says dragons need 12 age categories to be True, he can't quote a page that says the same about gaining size or HD.

JaronK

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Re: On Kobolds and True Dragons
« Reply #174 on: July 21, 2010, 07:50:24 PM »
At least the last post clarified the problem here... some folks don't know the difference between descriptions and definitions.

A definition is a form of description that must describe all members of the set, and not members not of the set.  For example, the definition of an even number is one divisible by 2 such that the result will be an integer.  All even numbers match that definition.  No odd numbers match that exception.  If there was a single number that was even but not divisible by 2, it would not be a definition.

This is why exceptions that SorO keeps ignoring are important... a single exception to the rule means it's not a definition. 

Descriptions aren't so strict.  "Human beings have five fingers on each hand and four limbs" is a valid description of human beings.  But it's not a definition... it describes things that aren't human (like gorillas) and there are some humans that don't fit it (polydactyls, amputees).  Something that describes other things outside the set could be part of a definition, but could not by itself be one.  Something that fails to describe even one member of the set is not a definition.

Note however that D&D has a specific rule that is worth noting here: the specific overrides the general.  As such, all D&D definitions have a built in extra clause "unless the entry says otherwise."  You could have a definition for humanoids that would be perfectly valid, and then have purple worms not match that definition but specifically say they're humanoid, and that would be fine.

In short: If you have properties X, Y, and Z, then you are A is a definition.  A's generally have X is a description.

This is why "True Dragons are Chromatic or Metallic" isn't a definition, but rather a description.  Gem Dragons aren't, therefor it can't be a definition.  "True Dragons have innate spellcasting" isn't a definition either... many things have innate spellcasting that aren't even dragons, and some True Dragons don't have innate spellcasting.  But "True Dragons are creatures of the Dragon Type that have 12 age categories" is a definition.  It's true for all True Dragons, and false for all Lesser Dragons (as well as all non dragons).  "True Dragons are creatures of the Dragon type that have age categories" is only good when we understand the type of age categories they mean (the 12 draconic ones) because technically disguise and alter self refer to the standard PC ages as being "age categories" despite the fact that the ages section doesn't refer to them as such.  That's sloppy writing, since it leads to all kinds of problems (mostly because of what happens with the Draconomicon definition if you read it that way... but even then, you still end up with Kobolds as True.  You just also lump in every other draconic PC  The Draconomicon definition also works nicely.

It's also important to note what Draconomicon says about Lesser Dragons, namely it defines lesser dragons as being creatures of the Dragon type that lack age categories.  You CANNOT be lesser if you have age categories.  That reinforces the idea that age categories are alone what is important, as anything else leads to a logical contradiction

This is why SorO's definition cannot be true... it leads to a logical contradiction to have anything more than age categories.   The only definition of True Dragon that doesn't lead to contradictions is "A True Dragon is a creature of the Dragon type that has 12 age categories."  This uses all listed definitions, located in Draconomicon, Dragon Magic, and Dragons of Kyrnn.  It does NOT use descriptions, as those are not the same as definitions.  SorO's description (not definition) is generally true, as true as my description of humans as four limbed creatures with five fingers per hand.   Unfortunately, no rule actually states what he said.  No rule says you have to gain racial HD or size as you get older to be a True Dragon.  While I can quote the page that says dragons need 12 age categories to be True, he can't quote a page that says the same about gaining size or HD.

JaronK

Or, to put it another way


Hey, Sor0, out of curiosity, do you have "an innate understanding of mercantile matters", "access to magic whatever its source", "a practical attitude toward divine magic", or "always held an af?nity for the sea."

See, races of destiny lists all of those under the 'human' section.  However, there is no list of 'humans' in any d20 product that lists you as human.
Linguist, Mad, Unique, none of these things am I
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