From PathfinderWiki
A flame drake terrorizes a town.

A drake is a degenerate, cruel, and evil cousin of the true dragons. Drakes share many traits with true dragons—they have sturdy leathery wings, reptilian forms, dangerous breath, and the ability to speak—but have two legs instead of a true dragon's four and lack their greater intelligence. A pack of drakes is called a rampage.12


Drakes reach reproductive maturity earlier than true dragons do, and are consequently more common. Drakes breed every five years, laying clutches of eggs that must be incubated for three to six weeks under specific conditions particular to each drake species. Drake hatchlings imprint on the first creature they see, and reach maturity after two years.2

Habitat and society

Drakes are typically less intelligent than true dragons,2 though they are intelligent enough to use language, reason with others, and make deals with other races.1 However, they lack the patience, diplomacy, and long-term planning of their greater relatives, making them more prone to violence.1

Very rarely, drakes form strong bonds with other intelligent beings, with whom they become companions. Such drakes typically refer to their partners as their "charges", as they refuse to name any other being as their master. These bonds typically form after years spent by the other party winning the drake's trust. Due to both the time necessary to forge this bond and the rarity of drakes capable or willing to become another being's companion, these drakes are typically viewed as irreplaceable by their charges.3

Species of drake

Drakes come in many species and have adapted to live in many environments.2

Wyverns are often considered to be a type of drake. Although they exhibit a number of differences from most drake types, they also show a noticeable degree of deference and collegial behavior towards one another.4

While pseudodragons are often called house drakes, they are not considered part of the drake family.5 Some primal dragons, such as brine dragons and crystal dragons, are sometimes referred to as drakes, perhaps due to their elemental nature rather than being adapted true dragons.6

On Golarion

Thanks to the many adaptations and species of drakes, few parts of Golarion are devoid of their presence.1 Drakes are often viewed by humanoid races as pests—though especially dangerous ones—across parts of Golarion, with some governments issuing bounties to reduce their populations.7 Others make contact and cut deals with individual drakes to defend property in exchange for treasure.8 or ally with them to bolster a city's defenses.9

Talented spellcasters have been known to take shadow drakes as familiars,10 though they might also independently align themselves with someone attuned to their mischievous nature.11 The legendary Orbs of Dragonkin include one capable of dominating drakes,12 and certain magic items can make certain types of drakes easier to summon.13 Beyond these exceptions, however, most attempts to domesticate drakes end in catastrophe.1

Drake eggs are considered valuable commodities, and are used as spell components, eaten as food and, most commonly, incubated to hatch drake mounts and guardians. However, this trade is criminalized in many societies, as drakes are both evil and intelligent creatures.2

In the Inner Sea region

Near the Winged Wood, a growing number of drakes corrupted by demonic forces of the Worldwound became half-fiends.14

Giants across the Inner Sea region are known to breed and keep frost drakes and pets, minions, and even mounts for their allies.151617

Colonists of Xin-Shalast from Riddleport hunt frost drakes for food near the rediscovered city.18

The draconic monument known as the Sleeper, located deep in the Mindspin Mountains, draws drakes who lair in its chambers and the mountain beneath.19 Flame drakes favor the crest of Droskar's Crag as a nesting perch.20

In Tian Xia

Goka hosts drake races that are popular with nobles and feature lavish purses for the victors.21

Notable drakes

On distant worlds

Frost drakes are plentiful in the namesake Drakelands of Triaxus, where they serve in armies under and alongside dragonkin.2223


Paizo published a major article about drakes, titled "Ecology of the Drake", in The Hill Giant's Pledge.

For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Shaun Hocking, et al. “Lesser Dragonkind” in Dragonslayer's Handbook, 14. Paizo Inc., 2013
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Logan Bonner, et al. “Monsters A-Z” in Bestiary, 130. Paizo Inc., 2019
  3. Alexander Augunas, et al. Drakes, Stepchildren of Glory” in Legacy of Dragons, 22. Paizo Inc., 2016
  4. Logan Bonner, et al. “Monsters A-Z” in Bestiary, 133. Paizo Inc., 2019
  5. Elaine Cunningham & Dave Gross. Winter Witch. Paizo Inc., 2010
  6. Amber Stewart. “The Inner Sphere” in The Great Beyond, A Guide to the Multiverse, 17. Paizo Inc., 2009
  7. Mike McArtor. “Chapter 1: Wilds” in Guide to Darkmoon Vale, 21. Paizo Inc., 2008
  8. 8.0 8.1 Amber E. Scott. “Secrets of the Sphinx” in Secrets of the Sphinx, 19. Paizo Inc., 2014
  9. Matthew Goodall, et al. “The Linnorm Kingdoms” in Lands of the Linnorm Kings, 15. Paizo Inc., 2011 Specifically river drakes allied with Freyr Darkwine to protect Blackraven Hall.
  10. Will McCardell, et al. Familiar Folio, inside rear cover. Paizo Inc., 2015
  11. Brian Duckwitz, et al. “Partners in Crime” in Cohorts and Companions, 27. Paizo Inc., 2015
  12. F. Wesley Schneider. “Legendary Artifacts” in Artifacts & Legends, 34. Paizo Inc., 2012
  13. Jason Bulmahn, et al. “Chapter 5: Gear and Magic Items” in Advanced Class Guide, 217. Paizo Inc., 2015
  14. James Jacobs, et al. “Chapter Two: Adventures in the Worldwound” in The Worldwound, 39. Paizo Inc., 2013
  15. Matthew Goodall, et al. “The Proving Grounds” in Lands of the Linnorm Kings, 43. Paizo Inc., 2011
  16. Tim Hitchcock, et al. Xin-Shalast” in Lost Cities of Golarion, 58. Paizo Inc., 2011
  17. Patrick Renie. “Chapter 2: Sultur Mill Outpost” in Wardens of the Reborn Forge, 40. Paizo Inc., 2013
  18. Tim Hitchcock, et al. Xin-Shalast” in Lost Cities of Golarion, 57. Paizo Inc., 2011
  19. Tyler Beck, et al. “Adventuring in Belkzen” in Belkzen, Hold of the Orc Hordes, 51. Paizo Inc., 2015
  20. Tim Hitchcock & Jason Nelson. “Adventures in Andoran” in Andoran, Birthplace of Freedom, 44. Paizo Inc., 2015
  21. James Jacobs, et al. “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 24. Paizo Inc., 2011
  22. Matthew Goodall. “The Frozen Stars” in The Frozen Stars, 17. Paizo Inc., 2013
  23. James L. Sutter. “Chapter 1: The Solar System” in Distant Worlds, 34. Paizo Inc., 2012