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How can a gryphon rider defeat a dragon rider?

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Peregrine, Jul 25, 2019.

  1. Peregrine

    Peregrine Troubadour

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    Dragons can breathe fire which makes the gryphon is disadvantaged. But the gryphon has a chance evade dragonfire and attack, especially if gryphons are hypothetically faster than dragons due to lighter weight.

    Its believable that multiple gryphon riders can take down a single dragon rider due to the dragon being overwhelmed from all sides, but how does gryphon rider defeat dragon rider in one to one combat?

    What would be the gryphon rider's method of attack? Would the gryphon need to attack the dragon or would the gryphon rider need ranged weapons? Maybe the dragon rider himself would be the target of attack?
     
  2. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    Go for the wings. Unless your dragons have wings of steel. Though making it so they can't fly is generally the best option. The ranged fire option of dragons is not likely to be the be all and end all. Claws and teeth, the riders themselves and such. How big are dragons compared to gryphons? Their beaks could rend scales and crush bones. There are many options likely to be had.
     
  3. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    There's two advantages that I would believe if you gave them to a griffin rider over a dragon rider. The first is altitude - the griffin could possibly fly higher than the larger, oxygen-needing dragon can fly. And the second is stamina - the griffin can fly for a longer period of time than the heavy, muscled dragon that needs more rest.

    With these two assumptions, the griffin rider would want to harass a dragon from above and keep at it long enough until the dragon wears out. It still wouldn't be easy, but it might be doable.
     
  4. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    Is the question really so general? That is, how can any one griffin rider defeat any one dragon rider?

    Or is it how does this particular griffin rider in my story defeat that particular dragon rider? To me, that's a much more interesting question, with lots more possibilities.
     
  5. K.S. Crooks

    K.S. Crooks Inkling

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    If the focus is on the Gryphon vs the Dragon- if a dragon is a reptile then going somewhere cold will slow its actions, perhaps the dragon has a certain amount of fire it can breath and can run out for a time, maybe the gryphon has better eye-sight especially at night, perhaps the gryphon can maneuver better (like a hummingbird vs a sparrow), the dragon may already be incapacitated in some way.
    If the focus is on the riders- the gryphon rider may have far more experience with their gryphon and/or vs dragons, the dragon rider may already be incapacitated in some way, the gryphon rider may have better vision, the gryphon rider may know the area they are fighting better and can use the terrain by flying low, the use of armour and weapons can also be used to favor the gryphon rider.
     
  6. TheKillerBs

    TheKillerBs Inkling

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    Attack the rider. Have the Gryphon rider go above the dragon and dive-bomb the rider. One-hit kill.
     
  7. Insolent Lad

    Insolent Lad Inkling

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    Yep, the most vulnerable part of any dragon. Exactly how to attack them is a little harder to say. Arrows wouldn't be overly effective. Maybe dragging a hook on a line? Or something like the musket loads that were used against ship sails, two projectiles attached to each other with a wire to cut a wide path through whatever they hit.

    As others have pointed out, all this is going to vary according to how you imagine your critters. I had some fairly extensive griffin on dragon fights in one of my novels but the dragons were intelligent enough they didn't need riders and worked independently. The griffins, on the other hand, were very much bird brains and inclined to be difficult to control when they got excited.
     
  8. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    If we're putting the focus on the riders....

    A dragon rider isn't really doing anything. Presumably he's controlling the dragon, of course, but the dragon is so well armed that the rider's attacks aren't even useful. The How to Train Your Dragon series gets around this by making the dragons much smaller, giving them dog-like intelligence (that is, kind of dumb unless trained by the rider), and by letting the rider glide off the dragon's back to attack during a diversion. But your typical fantasy dragon doesn't need or want a rider to help with attacking.

    A griffin rider on the other hand is doing all the work. A griffin has much weaker close range attacks, beak and lion claws, with no armor, no fire, no size and weight to throw around. The griffin can drop something, like rocks or firebombs, but that would be one shot and then back to reload. It's mostly on the rider to shoot or cast or throw whatever damage they're going to be doing.

    So, basic expectation of who you might expect to see as a rider (other things equal)....

    A dragon rider: Maybe like a spoiled prince or noble, trained to ride, sure, but trained in a lot of other things, given the privilege to ride for his birth or wealth, since dragons are powerful and rare, and riding one effectively doesn't require that much specialized skill.

    A griffin rider: A trained pilot and soldier who does the job full time for a living. Highly skilled at the job.

    I have no problem seeing a griffin take down a dragon. But I can't help think, armies tend to have a mixed arms philosophy because it's the most effective. I would really want to send in one dragon and a dozen griffin riders as support for an air strike. Not just one rider on his own.
     
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