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Dragons are scary. The Undead are scary. Undead Dragons are super scary.

Often the most badass type of undead, dracoliches are never to be taken lightly. They are always heavy hitting monsters, if not outright bosses. Any Necromancer should do well to seek to have one, or outright become one. It's not a rare thing, however, for these dragons to be weaker than their regular, living counterparts as they inherit the weaknesses of The Undead like Revive Kills Zombie while dragons rarely have such exploitable flaws. But in some cases, they might instead be literal liches, where so long as their Soul Jar is undamaged, they are Nigh-Invulnerable, making them stronger than regular dragons.

Often the dragon's classic fire Breath Weapon will be turned into a poison breath or ice blast when they become undead. If it remains fire, expect some form of Technicolor Fire - blue and green being popular picks.

A specific type of Non-Human Undead and Undead Abomination. Related to Draconic Abomination. May overlap with Undead Fossils in cases of Dinosaurs Are Dragons.


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    Anime & Manga 

    Card Games 
  • Colossal Kaiju Combat!: Prior to its cancellation, CKC had a Collectible Card Game spin-off that was used to vote in "Progenitor" monsters that could appear in prospective future games. One of the monsters, Valok, was a four-winged alien dragon who ruled over the planet Galias, but his use of dark magics saw him overthrown and killed by his subjects. The dark magic suffusing his corpse reanimated him into an almost-mindless undead monstrosity sustained by devouring the souls and agony of his victims, being capable of exhaling a corruptive life-stealing miasma and and ripping open portals to other dimensions.
  • Magic: The Gathering: Undead dragons — generally represented as creatures with both the Dragon type and either the Zombie or Skeleton types — are not uncommon.
    • The legendary creature Bladewing the Risen is an infamous zombie dragon from Dominaria.
    • Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon, a dragon from Mirrodin that was slain and raised as a skeletal minion by the Phyrexians that overran that world.
    • Dominaria also has vampiric dragons. Other zombie dragons include Boneyard Scourge, which can return from the graveyard whenever a dragon dies, and Scourge of Nel Toth, while skeletal dragons further include the Bone Dragon.
    • Kaldheim has another vampire dragon in the form of the Immersturm Predator, who inhabits the setting's version of Hell and can feed on the living and the dead alike to empower itself.
  • Zombie Dragons are a race of creatures in the Duel Masters card game.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 
  • Abraxas (Hrodvitnon): In this Godzilla MonsterVerse fanfiction, the Many infect and reanimate the corpse of the long-dead elder Manda in Chapter 13.
  • Child of the Storm has Gravemoss first pull a Familicide on every Hebridean Black dragon available, then resurrects them as aerial troops to send on a direct course for London as part of HYDRA's counter-blow to SHIELD's Operation Overlord, meaning that there are hundreds of draconic zombies to deal with. Thankfully, their relatively slow flight speed counts against them and they're intercepted by the RAF, War Machine and Warren Worthington III a.k.a. Archangel.
  • Split Second (My Little Pony) has Thorn, the alternate timeline counterpart to Spike. Interesting in that he is not quite dead, but not alive either. He also happens to be a horcrux for Sparkle.
  • The Equestrian Wind Mage: Stallords — gigantic, animated reptilian skeletons — are, according to Vaati, the reanimated skeletons of dragons. The heroes fight one as the very first boss.

    Films — Animation 
  • The main villain of the Dragon Hunters CGI movie is the World-Gobbler, an absolutely gigantic skeletal dragon.
  • How to Train Your Dragon: One short involves the heroes being attacked by a skeletal dragon called the Boneknapper. However, it's revealed at the end of the short that the Boneknapper is actually friendly and that it just wanted its collarbone (which allows it to roar) back. The Boneknapper isn't really skeletal, however. It just wears bones that it finds along the ground as armor.

    Films — Live-Action 


  • In the Craft Sequence, dragons don't have any particular rules or sentimental inclinations about what should happen to their bodies after death, a fact that is very pleasing to human necromancers. Undead dragons were used as weapons in the God Wars, and in Last First Snow the King in Red deploys one to put down an alleged rebellion in his city.
  • Forgotten Realms novels:
    • The Year of Rogue Dragons features both dracoliches (in this case literally a dragon turned into a lich) and a vampiric smoke drake (a leftover from the Big Bad's previous attempt to create undead dragons).
    • In The Sellswords, a dracolich is the final boss of a dungeon that Artemis and Jarlaxle raid with a party of adventurers from Damara.
    • In The Finder's Stone Trilogy novel The Wyvern's Spur, an intelligent ghostly wyvern stands guard over the Wyvernspur family crypt and the spur which gives the family its name. It allows members of the family to pass unmolested but kills anyone else who tries to enter.
  • The Spellbent series has Sap Daddy, an old zombie dragon that has been overgrown by plants.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Game of Thrones: In the season 7 episode "Beyond the Wall", one of Daenerys' dragons, Viserion, is slain by the Night King and sinks into a frozen lake. It's later dragged out of the ice by the army of the dead and resurrected as a Wight by the Night King. In the next episode, "The Wolf and The Dragon", the Night King rides it into battle and uses it to destroy the Wall. He shoots blue fire, apparently. Eventually, it is destroyed when the Night King himself is killed, along with the rest of his army.

    Mythology and Religion 


    Puppet Shows 
  • The Muppet Show: Uncle Deadly is implied to be a rare benign example, being variously referred to as a ghost and a dragon.

    Tabletop Games 
  • 13th Age: The Lich King has a habit of turning white dragons into these, starting with their patron, known simply as the White — thus explaining why white dragons are weaker than other chromatics. The dragons are rarely as on board with this plan as the Lich King is.
  • The Dark Eye has Rhazzazor, an ancient undead dragon who follows Borbarad.
  • Dragon Dice has the dracolich as one of the monsters for its Undead faction — it has the usual combination of melee and magic prowess.
  • Dungeons & Dragons gives us the Trope Namer. The dracolich is a dragon that imbibed a fatal potion in order to rise as a lich, becoming a powerful undead being. Across the various editions, zombie, common skeleton (mindless undead puppets controlled by necromancers, unlike the free-willed and intelligent dracoliches), ghost, wraith and vampire dragons have all been offered up as well. The advantages and disadvantages of being a dragon undead are all noted. For example, a draconic vampire can't enter a home uninvited. But a smoldering pile of rubble no longer counts as a home.
    • In 3rd edition, becoming a dracolich reduces your hit points, which is a large drawback for a beefy creature like a dragon, but it is very easy for the dracolich to regain a body in very short time by possessing a reptilian corpse. The advantage of being immortal can be achieved more easily by becoming a dragon ghost, which gets a new Breath Weapon and is even harder to kill outright. Of course, it is harder to become a ghost than a dracolich. The latter requires, at least in the Forgotten Realms setting, a dragon to simply imbibe a special poison, while you cannot exactly decide just to become a ghost.
    • Thanks to several splatbooks, it's possible to have a level 1 kobold dracolich (Races of the Dragon, the Draconomicon, Fiendish Codex 1 and Player's Guide to Faerun are all you need).
    • 4th Edition has multiple types of dracolich (ranging from the plain to fossilized dracoliches to dracoliches who only exist in the plane of dreams), as well as multiple types of zombie dragons, skeleton dragons (the mindless walking dead version of a dracolich), wraith dragons and vampire dragons.
    • Hollow dragons are a Good-aligned alternative to dracolichdom pursued by metallic dragons who see undeath as a means to pursue a noble purpose. These dragons undergo a magical ritual to transform themselves into undead, burning away their bodies until they're left as nothing more than hides filled with radiant energy, and become single-minded, eternal champion of their chosen purpose. Most hollow dragons embrace death once their purpose is fulfilled, but some simply pick up a new mission to dedicate themselves to.
    • Played with in regards to dragonbone golems, who appear to be dracoliches at first glance but are in fact mindless golems made of dragon bones. They are even classified as constructs rather than undead.
    • Interestingly, in the Forgotten Realms, the inventor and (until his death in the run-up to the Spellplague) main proponent of dracolichdom was a human — he was an archmage that went crazy, mistranslated a prophecy and decided to help fulfill it. Dracoliches were his solution on how to get dead dragons that are smart enough to rule the world. (He also later became a lich himself.)
    • The 5th edition adventure Dragonlance: Shadow of the Dragon Queen has death dragons, long-dead dragons reanimated by "Cataclysmic fire" as flaming skeletons that have been charred black. They can breathe this same fire, turning slain humanoids into fiery zombies under their command.
  • Exalted: Just to show that not even the dead are safe from his dickery, the Ebon Dragon has a charm that can turn him into a Creature of Death (i.e., a temporary dracolich).
  • GURPS: GURPS Dragons discusses undead dragons in a chapter dedicated to types and variants of draconic monsters. It notes that such beings, and Non-Human Undead in general, are recent fantasy invention, because folkloric undead were a reflection of human fears about their own mortality. They began to crop up in recent fiction because in settings where undeath is a clear thing that exists in its own right it can become difficult to justify why it only affects humans, and because there are few things more intimidating, if in a somewhat excessive way, than an undead dragon.
  • Pathfinder:
    • The original D&D dracolich is reworked into the "ravener". Raveners maintain their existence by eating souls, which form a protective shell around them as they're digested, and are often created by particularly ruthless dragons making deals with very nasty powers. They retain their old breath weapons, but infused with negative energy that withers the living and strengthens the undead.
    • Wyrmwraiths are ghostly creatures that form from the souls of deceased dragons that refused to accept death (as opposed to the ravener's intentional transformation into an undead). They loathe their undead existence, and are consumed with bitter loathing against those that can still walk as living beings — and especially for still-living dragons. Their breath weapon is replaced by a burst of pure negative energy.
    • "Standard" dragon ghosts exist as well, and Dragons Unleashed includes as a stetted character the ghost of a copper dragon slain by a powerful red wyrm and left to haunt his old lair.
    • There are also umbral dragons which, while not truly undead, are affected by positive and negative energy ("life" and "undeath" energy, respectively) as if they were undead and can turn their victims into undead servants.
  • Res Arcana: The Bone Dragon resembles an undead skeleton dragon. Fittingly, its summoning cost consists almost exclusively of Death essences.
  • Tormenta only has one, the Dragon King Lich, who in itself isn't that much of a bad guy, which is a good thing because he is the strongest dragon in the entire setting and could be a GREATER DEITY if he so wished. He doesn't, so he contents himself with protecting a cute young lady who can't cook.
  • Warhammer:
    • Zombie dragons feature heavily as epically powerful steeds for vampires (and, in some editions of the codex, necromancers), who supposedly journey to a legendary dragon graveyard to find dragon corpses to reanimate. Unlike most undead dragons, though, they are nothing more than mindless automatons, being basically extra-beefy flying zombies.
    • The Tomb Kings and High Priests of Khemri also make used of reanimated dragon skeletons as war mounts. These are often incredibly ancient remains, preserved from the days when ancient Nehekhara clashed against the dragons of the World's Edge Mountains.

    Video Games 
  • Absinthia: At the top of the Umbralair, Lilith revives Typhus the Worldbreaker as an undead dragon, much like Lissandra did with Typhus the Younger.
  • Artix Entertainment has some examples:
    • Drakath from AdventureQuest whose element is Darkness.
    • AdventureQuest Worlds has The Huge dracolich Fortress as well, the two Dracoliches at the bottom of the Doomwood Temple, the option to turn your own Baby Dragon to a Baby dracolich, and Desolich.
    • DragonFable:
      • The castle-sized dracolich that Sepulchure's fortress is literally built onto.
      • And the Super Ultra Mega dracolich — it's the size of a planet!
    • AdventureQuest 3D: Towards the end of the Dragon Graveyard story, Zakaru summons one of these in order to transport you to Skalazar, the villian of the quest chain.
    • MechQuest has 2 examples: The Sepulchure Mech summons a dracolich (that is also known as Fluffy) and then there is Drakrylos, who is more of a Dragonoid (a Robotic Dragon) that looks similar to dracolich.
  • Undead Antares from Babylons Fall is a zombified dragon who flies circles around you within an arena, with ghostly flames poking out it's skull-holes to boot.
  • Battle for Wesnoth: One level features a Scheletrical Dragon as enemy leader. Despite possessing no weapons besides its claws and jaws, it's still incredibly powerful.
  • In Bravely Default, one of these must be fought when trying to enter Eternia. Can become an Anti-Climax Boss due to how Revive Kills Zombie is in effect.
  • Breath of Fire: As expected, this is a type of dragon that appears regularly in the series.
    • Breath of Fire II presents the "Necroman(cer)", the One-Winged Angel form of Father Mason. It takes the appearance of a skeleton dragon with remains of skin, muscle and organs in its wings, back and ribcage; and it has the power to control undead zombies.
    • The first post-Time Skip boss in Breath of Fire III is the Dragon Zombie, a skeletal dragon created by the clan's enmity towards Garr. This fight is either really easy (if you have the Kyrie spell, which is either a Guide Dang It! to acquire through the Master system, or naturally gained by Garr if sufficiently leveled-up), or devastatingly tough (as your main healer in the battle, Ryu, is also your main damage dealer, and he can't do both).
    • Breath of Fire IV has the Dragonne, a zombified dragon that's half-way rotten, with patches of flesh missing here and there, most visibly in its jaw.
    • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter has the dragon Odjn, who's a corpse pinned to a wall. He makes a pact with the main character Ryu, and gives him access to the Wyrm powers.
  • Castlevania: A few undead dragons (usually of the skeletal variety) have appeared as bosses and enemies.
  • The Crystal of Kings has a skeletal dragon as the third boss, fought in an underground crypt.
  • Crypt Killer have skeletal dragon heads in a few areas, taking up plenty of the screen and spamming fireballs on you as Giant Mook enemies.
  • Dandy Dungeon has Bone Dragons, which are almost a Boss in Mook Clothing. They're tough, deal lots of damage, can breathe fire and poison.
  • The Dark Souls series, being built on Dark Fantasy tropes, utilizes this numerous times:
    • Undead Dragons in Dark Souls are very strong, non-respawning enemy, having loads of hitpoints, hitting like a truck and spewing poison breath over a wide area. One perches off a ledge in the Valley of Drakes, seemingly dead until the player picks up items next to its head. A late-game area, Lost Izalith, is populated by nothing except the lower halves (read: only the leg part, no head, no torso, nothing) of said undead dragons. Whatever happened to the upper parts? Nobody knows.
      • There's another Undead Dragon in the Painted World of Ariamis, split into two halves on top of a bridge. The upper half comes to life and charges across to attack if you get too close, leaving the lower half behind.
      • The original design of the Undead Dragons had maggots crawling over their flesh, but Hidetaka Miyazaki squashed that idea, as one of the main themes of Dark Souls was decaying majesty, and the maggots would have robbed the dragon of that.
      • Seath the Scaleless is referred to by Big Hat Logan as a "true undead", thanks to the power of the Primordial Crystal he stole after the war on the Everlasting Dragons.
      • In the Artorias of the Abyss DLC, the player encounters Black Dragon Kalameet a few times but only earns the right to fight him after enlisting the aid of Hawkeye Gough. While most dragons and wyverns that the player encounters throughout the game breathe fire (or lightning), Kalameet has the distinction of wielding the powers of the Abyss, and even Gough himself tells the player that Anor Londo itself fears his wrath. True to form, Kalameet is the most difficult boss of the DLC, not only being fast and nimble but using breath attacks that will utterly wreck anything hit by it, as well as being able to inflict the player with his Calamity mark, causing them to take double damage from anything that hits them. Defeating him normally will earn the player the Calamity Ring, which only really serves as a Bragging Rights Reward but which is carried over to later games in the franchise as a tradition.
    • The Ringed City DLC of Dark Souls III gives us Darkeater Midir, the optional "harder than hard" boss. Throughout Dark Souls I, the Abyss and the Dark have been been built up as the only power in the series that Lord Gwyn and the rest of the gods feared, and thus they go to extreme lengths to suppress it, to the point of commanding Midir, a descendant of the Everlasting Dragons (the first enemies of the gods) to eternally combat it owing to his immortality. However, at some point, Midir himself became corrupted by the Abyss, and would eventually be consumed by it should the player not kill him. When encountered by the player, Midir exhibits all of the toughness and strength of a dragon, along with the dark powers of the Abyss which make him extremely lethal. Not only will all of his melee attacks inflict Dark damage (making shields less reliable), but during his second phase he will start casting Affinity waves, and his laser breath attack becomes a Spam Attack that will outright one-shot players under the right circumstances.
    • Elden Ring continues the tradition with Lichdragon Fortissax, an optional boss at the end of an ending-unlocking questline. In the lore, it is established that the Rune of Death, otherwise known as Destined Death, is the only power that is capable of killing a demigod, and a fragment of it was used to murder Godwyn the Golden on the Night of the Black Knives. As the player further explores the Lands Between, they learn that during the war against the Ancient Dragons, Godwyn had defeated and then befriended Fortissax one of the Ancient Dragons. When the Rune of Death was used to slay Godwyn's soul, Fortissax entered Godwyn's dream to fight against the death within him, only to become corrupted by it. The player can also enter Godwyn's dream and confront Fortissax in this corrupted form. Unlike other Ancient Dragons, Fortissax will use Deathblight-inflicting lightning attacks against the player, which instantly kills them if the status bar fills up. Beyond unlocking the Duskborn ending upon victory, the player also earns the Remembrance of the Lichdragon, which can be used to redeem the Death Lightning incantation, allowing them to inflict Deathblight upon other player-like entities.
  • Disgaea: The Dragon Zombie class starting with the second game. They take halved damage from physical attacks, and boast very high defense and attack stats, but do poorly against magical attacks, especially wind (Though that problem can be remedied for one on your side). Their Darkness Breath is also generally one of the strongest area attacks in the game. They're rather dim compared to normal dragons, but this doesn't come up much.
  • Dragon Age: Origins:
    • The Queen of Blackmarch in Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening is a ghost dragon. She is the baddest Superboss in the expansion.
    • The Archdemon in the original game might also count, as it is effectively a corrupted fallen god in dragon form. There is some debate as to what exactly the Archdemon is, as neither anti-dragon nor anti-Darkspawn runes/weapons have any bonus effect on it.
  • Dragon Cave: There are several types of dracolich, like the Vampire Dragon and Undead Dragon species.
  • Dragon Blaze 2000 has a heroic example. One of the heroes, Ian, rides a skeletal dragon as his steed.
  • Dragon Gun have you fighting assorted dragon enemies, including skeletal dragons.
  • Dragon Quest Monsters has the Skullgon/Skelegon, a lower ranking monster that's usually created when you merge a member of the Dragon family with a member of the Zombie family.
  • Dragon's Dogma:
    • The Superboss is an undead dragon known as the Ur-Dragon.
    • Even more literally is the fight with the undead Bishop and his undead dragon. Hit him hard enough and they'll fuse together for even more powerful attacks!
  • In Dragon Strike a fight with a dracolich takes place above Dargaard Keep.
  • Dragon Valor: One of the bossfights is a skeleton dragon named Hades.
  • Drakan features skeletal dragon enemies.
  • Dungeon Crawl has reanimated dragons of the skeletal or zombified varieties (and spectral and simulacra versions, if you want to be thorough). There are also Bone Dragons, which are a seperate kind of monster altogether that pack a huge punch and have tons of HP. Dispel Undead is your friend.
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim:
    • A Skeleton Dragon appears during a College of Winterhold quest. As expected, killing it doesn't net you a dragon soul. It is also weaker than live dragons and cannot fly.
    • Durnehviir from the Dawnguard DLC states that he is caught "between laas and dinok, between life and death", and certainly looks the part. He's a dragon that explored necromancy to the point of selling his soul in exchange for power to the Ideal Masters, the rulers of the Soul Cairn where all souls sacrificed for necromancy end up. During his 4,000-year imprisonment in the Soul Cairn, his body is warped to a rotting skeletal version of his former self. The Ideal Masters did keep their promise, though, and granted him powerful necromantic abilities which he uses in combat. After an awesome battle with Durnehviir, the Dragonborn is told that Durnehviir is no longer a normal being and his body can reconstruct itself, which it later does. Out of respect, he then grants the Dragonborn the ability to summon him from the Soul Cairn for a short time, to aid the Dragonborn in battle (which benefits him as well because it grants him even a momentary reprieve from his imprisonment) He's pretty much an ideal dracolich, even if he never technically 'died'.
  • Eastern Exorcist has an Oriental take on the trope, an undead Chinese dragon animated by spirits, as a boss. It spends the whole fight flying circles around the boss arena, and you can see it's ribs through the holes along the sides of it's elongated body.
  • Epic Battle Fantasy:
    • Zombie dragons appear in the second and third games. They're among the hardest bossfights in the game since they show up in pairs and revive each other at full health as soon as one dies.
    • In Epic Battle Fantasy 4, Godcat has these for backup.
  • EverQuest and EverQuest II:
    • Both feature the dracoliche in the Plane/Shard of Fear, a (at the time of their release) very tough boss monster. Strangely, thanks to its immunity to magic-type spells, it was immune to spells that worked against undead and dragons.
    • There's also Trakanon, who is more of a zombie-dragon, but follows most of the criteria.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Zombie Dragons (or Dracozombies) are recurring enemies in the games.
    • In Final Fantasy X, an Underwater Boss Battle pits the heroes against Evrae Altana, the unsent form of a boss just a little earlier in the storyline. Revive Kills Zombie is in effect.
    • The undead dragons in Final Fantasy XII are variations of the plate wyrm enemies (winged dragons who remain on the ground during encounters). They have been reduced to skeletons, with visibly rotting bones. A variation, the Dragon Lich, has blue-white light floating near its wings. Another is fought as a boss, inexplicably named Hydro despite its lack of association with water.
  • Fire Emblem:
  • Forgotten Worlds: The Dust Dragon is a giant, dying and half-rotten red dragon. Its stomach is wide open, giving the player a nice veiw of its entrails and ribs, which it uses to attack.
  • Gothic: The Undead Dragon is the final boss of Gothic II.
  • Granblue Fantasy: Fediel's true form (and her incarnation as a raid boss) is that of a decaying dragon whose miasma constantly damages both your party and herself.
  • Guild Wars: Bone Dragons are Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • In Guild Wars 2, Zhaitan is the Elder Dragon of Death and Shadow, and resembles several undead dragons mashed together, with a half-dozen heads and nine wings. All of his lieutenants are undead dragons.
  • Heroes of Might and Magic:
    • Spectral/Bone Dragons. Despite looking cool, these dragons are arguably the weakest creatures of their level in any game they have appeared, as they have much lower HP, attack and defense values than average. They make up for it with sheer numbers, though, as V has a building upgrade that increases the number of dragons produced. Spectral Dragons in Heroes 3 do have a redeeming factor in their unique chance to cast a spell upon attack which causes the victims to age rapidly — instantly halving the health points of every unit in the attacked stack, thus making all survivors of the dragons' attack much squishier. Additionally, their sight is so terrifying to behold on the battlefield they reduce the enemy's morale just by being there, something even live dragons usually don't do.
    • They are notable in that Dragons are the only creatures not converted into skeletons when using any "skeleton transformer" type structure. Instead, putting dragons through this will result in one of these (who have better interactions with your undead troops, since apparently even living dragons are fearful of the dead).
    • In the fan-made Game Mod of the third game, "In the Wake of Gods", the Spectral Dragons can be upgraded further to make them less underwhelming. Those dragons are on par with Rank 8 creatures in terms of power. One of the possible upgrades is actually called the dracolich, and with the ability to shoot plague clouds just like a regular Lich, only much more powerful. The other one, the Ghoul Dragon... hoooo boy. It retains all the strong points of the Spectral Dragon and takes them up a notch. In addition to being all-around stronger and faster, they reduce enemy morale twice as much as Spectral Dragons do, can still execute an aging attack, and most terrifyingly, drain life from living units upon attack just like Vampire Lords (themselves a borderline Game-Breaker) do. Their low health comparatively to live dragons is not improved, but the vampiric attack allows them to revive fallen members of the stack with utmost ease.
  • Hungry Dragon:
    • Blaze's "Reaper" skin gives him an undead appearance with white Glowing Eyelights of Undeath and white splotches on his otherwise dark grey body.
    • Draconis' "White Flyer" skin turns her into an icy undead dragon.
    • Goldheist's "Spectre" skin turns him into a translucent ghostly dragon.
    • Umbra is an undead dragon with open wounds on her body that radiate spectral flames.
    • Skully is a skeletal dragon who is wreathed in demonic flames.
  • Impressive Title: In Wyvern Hills, there is a rare chance for a Zombie Dragon to spawn, which is actually an undead wyvern with an angelic halo above its head. They are renowned for being one of the toughest enemies in the game thanks to their Regenerating Health and Multiple Life Bars.
  • Jewel Master have a dragon boss that, upon defeat, lose it's skin and crumbles into bones... only for the Demon King, Jardine to reanimate those bones into a skeletal dragon and continue the battle. Though you can change the Sequential Boss into a Skippable Boss using the Blade Ring, which destroys the dragon's dracolich form before it can even attack.
  • Kaan: Barbarian's Blade: One shows up as one of the only three bosses in the entire game.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has an undead boss monster in the Cyrpt (near the Misspelled Cemetary) called the Bonerdagon. It's an undead dragon made of bones, not to be confused with an undead rdagon made of bones, and certainly not to be confused with an undead dagon made of boners.
  • Knight Bewitched: If the party returns to the Lair of Typhus the Younger and explore the new underground section, they can fight a zombified version of Typhus the Younger.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: Volvagia is stated to have been killed by an ancient Goron warrior and later revived by Ganondorf. He seems to have gotten all his flesh back, though, so it's not really apparent just from looking at him that he's undead (except possibly his face, though that could just be armor). A fan theory is that Stallord used to be Volvagia, this time revived but not getting his flesh back.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons:
      • Gleeok, the seventh dungeon boss, becomes headless skeletal dragon after its two heads are severed.
      • Onox's true Dark Dragon form has a distinctly skeletal look.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: Stallord is a giant dragon skeleton (later just skull) reanimated by Zant.
  • Legends of Runeterra: the Empires of the Ascended set's "Rise of the Underworld" expansion brought with it undead Shadow Isles dragons, largely to permit combos with Shyvana (who is subverted by Viego in the event), including an undead version of a previously established dragon, Kadregrin the Infernal (now Kadregrin the Ruined). Some of them are undercosted, but with the drawback of dealing damage to your Nexus or a unit on your side...although considering the number of units with on-death triggers in the Shadow Isles, and that most dragons have the Fury mechanic (which lets them get stronger when they kill units, including ones on your side), this may not be as problematic as it sounds.
  • Lost Kingdoms: The zombie dragon is the most powerful non-deity Earth creature in the game.
  • Manafinder: The Edgekeeper is an undead skeletal dragon that is the boss of Aevi's Edge, and it stands between the manafinders and the manastone of the area.
  • In MARDEK's second chapter, the dragon that was the grand hero Social Fox's last battle enjoyed the fight so much that it came back to life in hopes that he would too, so it could fight him again.
  • MediEvil 2: Combined with Dinosaurs Are Dragons, resulting in a fire-breathing, fossilized Tyrannosaurus Wrecks.
  • Minion Masters has Nyrvir, an undead dragon who serves Morellia, the Lich Queen.
  • Monster Hunter: Several Elder Dragons resemble undead beings:
    • Gogmazios in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate looks like a corpse that crawled out of a tar pit.
    • Nakarkos from Monster Hunter Generations looks like a skeletal, two-headed hydra. It's actually a giant cephalopod that excretes an adhesive substance to coat itself in its victims' bones. Its two "heads" are its front tentacles topped with dragon skulls. Its actual head, as well as the majority of its body, are usually kept hidden until significantly enraged.
    • Monster Hunter: World features Vaal Hazak, which probably isn't actually undead, but has a rotting, skeletal appearance and has the power to control decay-related gases, absorb life force from other monsters, and revive those same monsters to attack the player.
  • Monster Rancher: The Death Dragon/Diaboros is an animated dragon skeleton that can be obtained either from certain discs or combining a Dragon with a Joker.
  • Neverwinter Nights: A dracolich features as an Optional Boss in Hordes of the Underdark.
  • Ninja Gaiden (the new-gen series, not the original NES trilogy) has one of these serves as the boss of Chapter 7 in the first game.
  • Ogre Battle: Zombie Dragons are top tier dragon units created by using an Undead Ring on a Tiamat.
  • In the world of Pillars of Eternity, dragons take on the characteristics of their environment. So when, in the Beast of Winter DLC for the second game, the player comes across a dragon that apparently lives in the Vytmawdh, a gate to an afterlife that emphasizes cold, entropy, and the gradual destruction of the soul, the dragon appropriately has the appearance of a half-rotted frozen corpse, with an exposed ribcage and skeletal wings. Later in the quest it's revealed that the dragon is quite literally a lich as well, having bound her soul to a phylactery to live forever. Rymrgand took issue with that, and now she's trapped in his realm; when the Watcher gets trapped in the Vytmawdh as well, the dragon's (permanent) death is the price Rymrgand demands before letting them return to the realm of the living.
  • Pokémon:
    • Giratina has large spikes protruding from its body that resemble ribs, and is also part Ghost-type. It takes this even further by not only representing antimatter in the Pokeverse, but also being an Eldritch Abomination akin to that of Yog-Sothoth.
    • Kyurem from Black/White and Black 2/White 2 is a zombie dragon from outer space that is stated to have a taste for human flesh. However, it's not malevolent. The storyline in Black 2/White 2 reveals that all it wants is to be whole again.
    • Gen VIII introduces the Dreepy/Drakloak/Dragapult family. They're all Ghost/Dragon type, and are described as being the ghosts of a long extinct species.
    • Eternatus, also from Generation VIII, is designed after this and resembles a skeletal dragon, but is actually an Eldritch Abomination alien that is very much alive.
  • The unreleased sequel to the Primal Rage arcade fighting game would have featured one of these called Necrosan that serves as both the Big Bad and Final Boss. If that wasn't bad enough the character also happens to be resembling a theropod dinosaur enforcing the Dinosaurs Are Dragons trope and is actually an Eldritch Abomination that is this verse's God of Death. Even worse, it's revealed that Necrosan is an alien that was sealed inside a meteorite egg and his crashing into the future Earth caused a worldwide apocalypse. His plan (had the game been released) is to turn all the humans into zombies and use them to hatch his parasitic brood, forcing the heroes and even the other villains to work together and stop him.
  • Puzzle & Dragons has the Zombie Dragon and Corpse Wyrm, as well as their evolved formes.
  • Quiz & Dragons: In the Japanese version, it's possible for dragons to come back as skeletons once killed the first time.
  • Riviera: The Promised Land: The underworld Bonus Level has the party fight Hades, who takes the form of a dragon zombie. Disappointingly, he's a Palette Swap of an earlier, optional mini-boss, though his attacks are much, much stronger. (That said, the Fanelia item will settle his hash quite nicely.)
  • RuneScape:
    • Old School Runescape features a zombified blue dragon boss called Vorkath, which is considered both a zombie and a dragon for the purpose of in-game mechanics. In addition to having rotten flesh and exposed bones, Vorkath can also summon additional undead minions.
    • Vorkath is eventually introduced in RS3 after Zemouregal raises his corpse in preparation for a raid on Fort Forinthry. Vorkath occasionally attacks his new master as the player reduces his health throughout the boss fight, before Zemouregal is able to re-establish control. Eventually, Vorkath breaks Zemouregal's hold completely and flies off to parts unknown, lifting Zemouregal's damage cap and allowing the player to give him their full attention.
    • Revenant dragons are the cursed ghosts of dragons slain in the God Wars.
    • Skeletal wyverns, however, are explicitly not undead. They are reanimated piles of bones, and anti-undead spells don't work against them. In 2023 this was retconned and they now count as undead monsters.
  • Skylanders: Although he doesn't appear directly, Malefor does appear in the backstories of certain characters, and has been Retconned into an undead dragon. Quigley believes Cynder came Back from the Dead, in which case she would be a dracolich too.
    • Vathek, the antagonist of the Dragon's Peak adventure pack, is an undead wyvern.
    • Skeletal cyclops dragons appear as enemies in Skylanders: Trap Team.
  • Slashout contains a skeletal dragon as it's second-to-last boss. Appropriately enough, the arena you fight it is a massive Ribcage Ridge.
  • Solomon's Keep has Bone Daddy, who spits out poison along with maggots. If you try to be funny and stay out of his poison spit range, he stomps the ground, causing his bones to fly all over the place to damage you.
  • Starbound has the Bone Dragon, a huge skeletal dragon boss. It still breathes fire, however. It's revealed that it's actually a robot made to look like a skeletal dragon, and as it takes damage you see the mechanical parts underneath.
    When you purchase the Bone Dragon, not only do you get a realistic facsimile of a dragon, you also get those classic dragon traits — the gift of flight, red-hot fiery breath, and a predilection for murder! BUT THERE'S MORE-
  • In Suikoden, Tir has to defeat one to gain control of his castle.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
  • Total War: Warhammer: Zombie dragons are available as a high-level steed for Lord units of the Vampire Counts. They can fly, which allows them to easily bypass terrain obstacles and enemy units, cause Terror among enemy units and are very powerful in combat. Unlike other examples of this trope, they are just reanimated dragon corpses, simply another type of puppets bound to their masters' will.
  • Ultima Online has Skeletal Dragons.
  • ULTRAKILL has The Leviathan, the boss of Wrath. While it's a Demon instead of a proper dragon, the Leviathan is still close enough for being a sea serpent that not only has a skeletal appearance, its body is born from countless souls of dead sinners who were merged together by the same force that created the other Demons after they sunk to the ocean Styx's abyss out of despair.
  • Valkyrie Profile: There are Dragon Zombies, but they're a slight subversion in that, being both draconic and undead, they're vulnerable to spells that specifically target both and are actually not that big of a threat. One combo by a character with a dragon slayer or undead-targeting weapon and they're done for.
  • Warcraft and World of Warcraft:
    • The frost wyrms of the Scourge are the animated skeletons of blue dragons, and exhale giant blasts of cold. *** Sindragosa deserves special mention, having appeared on the latter's login screen for the duration of Wrath of the Lich King and really annoying players with her loud roar.
      • Another one worth mentioning is Sapphiron, a blue dragon slain and raised by Arthas. He too is a raid boss in World of Warcraft in the necropolis of Naxxramas.
      • The progenitor of all dragons, Galakrond, deserves a mention. One of the projects of the Lich King was to exhume the skeletal remains of this IMMENSE (probably the size of a small mountain; just his head, early spine, and right foreleg were excavated, and those alone took up a large chunk of the map) dragon and reanimate it as a frost wyrm. Fortunately (or maybe unfortunately, since the boss battle with that thing could have been epic) players crash this project before it can be achieved. According to the novel Dawn of the Aspects and the official lore compendium Chronicles, he was essentially already this in life. After eating everything else in his hunting grounds he began to cannibalize other proto-dragons. This twisted and corrupted his very being to the point that eventually the proto-dragons he consumed returned as undead horrors, thereby making him the progenitor and embodiment of necromancy on Azeroth.
    • Other, less-seen skeletal dragons include magmawyrms, created from black dragons, and emberwyrms, raised from (usually) the remains of red dragons. Nightbane from Karazhan, originally the blue dragon Arcanagos, is one such. Emberwyrms got a graphical update with the Legion expansion, and Nightbane became obtainable as mount by players in this expansion.
    • Fel dragons are an even rarer variant created from dragon skeletons infected with demonic magic. The boss Felmyst in Sunwell Plateau is the only known fel dragon, originally the blue dragon Madrigosa. She was raised by the blood of Pit Lord Brutallus seeping to her corpse.
  • War Dragons has Bolt, Yanari, Habrok, Ladon and several more Undead Dragons that are skeletal.
  • War of the Monsters: Raptros' fourth skin is a skeletal dragon.
  • In Wizard101, the rank 8 Death spell "Skeletal Dragon" summons one of these as an attack.
  • Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap has a Mummy Dragon, a Zombie Dragon and a Vampire Dragon.

  • 8-Bit Theater: As the final test of overcoming their inner demons at the Castle of Ordeals, the Light Warriors have to battle a giant skeletal dragon. As Fighter explains, "Maybe the bone dragon represents our skeletons. Those are inside of us. Like skeletons." Thief defeats the dragon by stealing its vertebrae.
  • El Goonish Shive: In "A Talking Wand???", "zombie dragon" is mentioned as a possibility of meeting a dragon, but not one that's alive.
  • The Handbook of Heroes has Jeremy the dragon. After being killed by Fighter, he returns as an undead dracolich.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Xykon temporarily uses a zombified silver dragon as a mount after clearing out a dungeon of Good-aligned creatures (#429 and onwards, explicitly calling it a zombie in #441).
    • Vaarsuvius casts Create Greater Undead on a black dragon's head. However, this is for the express purpose of casting Familicide on it, thus killing everything that had any familial connection to that dragon, and they disintegrate it after they're through.

    Web Original 
  • The Clockwork Raven: "Bone Dragons" are the primary antagonists.
  • The Undead (a.k.a. Zombie) dragons from Dragon Cave. They are created from dead dragons that the breeder attempts to revive, with a small chance of being successful. Undead dragons match the general morphology of the breed they used to be, i.e. a turned lindwurm (wings and a pair of arms) will have an Undead sprite with that appearance.
  • Mahu: In "Frozen Flame", the army of prince Arius faces an undean force mixing spirits and a small squad of undead dragons, each powerful enough to tear through regiments with its claws and decimate a whole army flank with its poisonous breath. Only through a mixture of tactics, resurrecting troops and sacrifice do Arius and his men achieve victory.
  • VShojo: Bittersweet Apricot, known to all as Froot, is a half-dragon lich. She's stated to have lost much of her draconic power in exchange for immense necromantic power as a lich, resulting in a Little Bit Beastly appearance. Defying the usual reputation of dracoliches, Froot is very much a Perky Goth, and usually the Token Wholesome amongst her friends.

    Western Animation 
  • Ninjago: In Season 13, the legendary dragon Grief-Bringer is resurrected as an undead skeleton by the Skull Sorcerer.
  • The Owl House: While Emperor Belos started his life as a human, by the time the show proper takes place he's turned himself into an undead Humanoid Abomination made of liquefied, necrotic flesh in his efforts to live long past his natural lifespan. When he uses this liquid rot to infest the heart of the Titan (the Giant Corpse World the story takes place on), he begins rapidly covering the entire island in Meat Moss, and creates a draconic-looking avatar for him to inhabit, covered in eyes and bigger than his entire castle. In this form, he's practically invincible, even to someone as powerful as the Collector, and able to shoot beams of corruption from his mouth.
  • Transformers: Prime: In the Grand Finale, Unicron raises and commands a swarm of zombie Predacons. That's an entire army of undead alien robot dragons.
  • Wakfu Season 4: the Necros host include a colossal, undead Dragon called Rotalström. While no longer able to fly or talk, the beast can bite down on huge chunks of scenery and, unusually, employ a Wakfu Breath Weapon to feed hordes of Necros at once. It is later revealed that Efrim, the Eliatrope Dragon brother of Nora, has been turned into a sentient Necros after being left behind in the Necroworld for centuries, though he mostly resembles a zombie-like lizard person with glowing magenta eyes and mouth.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Zombie Dragon, Undead Dragon, Ghost Dragon, Skeletal Dragon, Skeleton Dragon


Gaelion, The Dragon Emperor

Originally "The Weakest of The Dragon Emperors", Gaelion was inadvertently killed by Sword Hero Ren Amaki as part of a "Quest"; who leaves behind the corpse following game logic that it'd despawn. The resulting corpse poisons the land and Gaelions' hatred of the Sword Hero for killing him and indirectly selling Gaelions' adoptive daughter into slavery reanimates his corpse.

How well does it match the trope?

4.71 (7 votes)

Example of:

Main / Dracolich

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