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Dragons Are Demonic

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"The Blades are wise not to trust me. Onikaan ni ov.note  I would not trust another dovah. Dov wahlaan fah rel.note  We were made to dominate. The will to power is in our blood. You feel it in yourself, do you not?"
Paarthurnax, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

When it comes to representing evil in a given story, a common form it takes is that of the dragon. While in East Asia dragons were often seen as benevolent or at least neutral deities, the most common depiction of dragons in Europe, especially post-Christianity, were as evil beings that were often used as a stand-in for Satan himself or those directly under him. (The Greek drakon and Latin draco that the word "dragon" derives from literally mean "one who stares", referring to large snakes and occasionally crocodiles and alligators.)

One of, if not the most common scenarios in a fantasy story is the hero slaying a dragon, either as a literal example of The Dragon, or as an Arc Villain or Big Bad in their own right. It's common, though not compulsory, for these dragons to be dark in color, and capable of breathing dark or green colored flames (whether literal Hellfire or not), or poison breath. A Dracolich often falls under this, due to the association between the undead and evil.


Compare Reptiles Are Abhorrent, and especially Snakes Are Sinister for older depictions. If they have religions based around them or are otherwise treated as deities or divine beings, they may also fall under Dragons Are Divine (albeit as evil deities). There's also a heavy overlap between this trope and Draconic Abomination, and if a demonic dragon is feathered, it falls under Feathered Fiend as well.

A subtrope of Our Dragons Are Different, Our Demons Are Different, and Scaled Up.



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    Anime and Manga 
  • Berserk: While normal dragons exist and are seen once the barrier between the spirit world and the mortal world is torn down, the first "dragon" to appear in the series is Grunbeld, a demonic warrior working for Griffith, whose true Apostle form is that of a corundum-skinned dragon. Ironically, as far as Apostles usually go, Grunbeld is a Noble Demon with a side of Tragic Villain as revealed in Berserk: The Flame Dragon Knight.
  • Digimon:
    • Digimon Adventure: Two of the Dark Masters, Machinedramon and MetalSeadramon, are based on dragons.
    • Digimon Tamers: Guilmon and his digivolution Growlmon are referred to as Demon Dragons (Dark Dragons in the English localization), and are red Virus-type dinosaur-like dragons that specialize in combat. Upon extreme anger of Takato over the death of Leomon at Belzemon's hands, he transforms his partner Guilmon into one of these, named Megidramon. His powers are so acute and massive that he causes the Digital World to slowly crumble around him simply by existing. Fortunately he's calmed down before he could destroy everything.
    • When Lucemon, the Greater-Scope Villain of Digimon Frontier, goes One-Winged Angel a second time, he takes the form of a gigantic bestial dragon with Unholy Nuke powers.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Cymbal, the youngest son of Demon King Piccolo in the original Dragon Ball, is a villainous dragon-shaped mutated Namekian.
    • The Shadow Dragons from Dragon Ball GT, spawned by Black Smoke Shenron, an Evil Counterpart of Shenron, are evil beings created by the overuse and built-up negative energies of the Dragon Balls through the series, and serve as the final antagonists for our heroes to defeat. Fittingly enough, a good deal of them look quite similar to traditional depictions of winged, horned demons and they all exist to create as much chaos and destruction as possible. However, Nuova Shenron is instead a Token Good Teammate who eventually teams up with Goku to try and defeat Omega Shenron. Alas, he is defeated.
  • In Fairy Tail: Acnologia is known throughout the world as the "Black Dragon of the Apocalypse" who slaughtered almost the entirety of the dragon race and is feared by everyone who knows him as a calamity that brings nothing but destruction. It's to the point he's the only thing more fearsome than Zeref, the immortal Black Wizard who created various devastating black magics and demons that still plague the world today.
  • In Fushigi Yuugi, the deity on the side of the Kutou Empire, Seiryuu, is a dragon. Unlike most examples of this trope, Seiryuu is an Asian-style dragon, and associated with water more than fire. However, it is shown that Seiryuu himself isn't actually evil; it's just that his purpose is to grant wishes...and that he's the patron god of a very warlike empire, so he's being manipulated by corrupt humans.
  • In Future Card Buddyfight, Big Bad Kyoya Gaen's Buddy Monster is named Demonic Demise Dragon, Azi Dahaka. He's also the leader of Darkness Dragon World's legions of monsters, which include many more examples, though that doesn't figure too much into the plot.
  • Inuyasha:
    • Ryukotsusei is an extremely powerful dragon demon (To be more exact, a daiyoukai), who battled the Inu no Taisho, Inuyasha and Sesshomaru's father, to a standstill before being sealed by being stabbed above the heart by one of his fangs. Even then, the injuries suffered by the Inu no Taisho during the battle proved enough to kill him afterwards.
    • Ryuujin, a far weaker dragon demon, has the ability to absorb demonic energy.
  • In One Piece, Kaido of the Four Emperors, known as the strongest "creature" in the world, takes the form of a massive East Asian dragon, and rules his territory as a near merciless Evil Overlord.
  • Transformers: Robots in Disguise: Megatron is the leader of the Predacons and one of his alt modes is a two-headed dragon. It was his most frequently used alt. mode in battle before he upgraded and became Galvatron.
  • Transformers Victory: The Big Bad Deathsaurus has a dragon-based alt mode.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: Duel Monster Spirit Yubel is a demon (and even classified as such in real card game) but was also described as draconic in their past life. This is far more obvious in their Terror Incarnate and Ultimate Nightmare forms.
  • Fafnir from Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid is a cursed dragon whose true form is nightmarish, with multiple solid-red eyes, a vertical mouth lined with fangs, a jet-black serpentine body, and what appear to be tentacles. Though he's more of a greedy recluse than outright evil.

    Comic Books 
  • Checkmate: The final arc of the 2000s run deals with a three-headed dragon named Azhi Daraki who wants to bring about the end of the world.
  • Hellboy: The Ogdru Jahad is a seven-headed dragon prophesied to destroy the Earth, its physical form consisting of seven cocoons somewhere in deep space. Just about every other villain is trying to accelerate its coming or delay it by killing Hellboy (who is prophesied to wake it). Hellboy himself being an Anti Anti Christ, he ends up slaying an avatar of the dragon, but it still isn't enough to prevent the apocalypse.
  • JLA: A League of One has Drakul Karfang, an ancient and evil dragon who is stated to be an embodiment of hatred and lies and is so powerful that a prophecy states that the Justice League will die if they face her even if they kill her. It is for this reason that Wonder Woman decides to face the dragon alone.

    Fan Works 
  • In The Bridge, the normal Equestrian dragons are, relative for a fantasy setting, normal beings whom can be good or evil. The cosmic monstrocity, Grand King Ghidorah on the other hand combines the worst aspects of the character from multiple film incarnations, is responsible for the deaths of untold millions; and is treated more like an Animalistic Abomination that just happens to look like a dragon.
  • Dead or Alive 4: The Devil Factor: When searching the DOATEC building for Kasumi and Ayane's mother, Dante is forced to fight Apophis, a robotic dragon who shoots red lightning. His brother Vergil gained Apophis' servitude by defeating him in battle.
  • A Thing of Vikings: While dragons in this setting are just really weird animals, quite a few characters (namely Christian ones) believe them to be this trope, with some outright calling them demons, devils, or hellbeasts. After the Dragon Mail stations have been set up however, this becomes less prevalent as people get more used to dragons being around (as intended by Hiccup, which is partly why he set up the mail). It actually becomes inverted with some people. After a long time spent suffering the tyranny of Harthacnut, after he was killed by Dragon Riders, Markus started comparing dragons to angels.
  • In We Are All Pokémon Trainers, Umbra during his time as the evil Ghost Lord uses his entire Ghost Army to take on the form of Penumbra, a monstrous dragon resembling a cross between Origin Giratina, Black Kyurem, and the Dark Hide from Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep at the climax of the Conquest arc. In this form he's so powerful that it takes the combined efforts of most of the warlords of Ransei, Tagg using some of his most powerful seals empowered by the Aura Nexus below the Infinity Tower, and a faith-empowered Ammy in order to defeat him.

    Films — Animated 
  • All Dogs Go to Heaven: During Charlie's nightmare, he's Dragged Off to Hell and confronted by a truly terrifying Satan figure, depicted as a Big Red Devil resembling a cross between a dragon and a hellhound. The monster appears at the very end, waiting to drag Charlie's soul down to Hell. The whippet angel appears before that happens, however, drives the dragon away, and tells Charlie his place in Heaven has been restored due to his Heroic Sacrifice.
  • The evil fairy Maleficent in Sleeping Beauty proclaims to Prince Phillip prior to fighting her that he must now face her and "all the powers of Hell", before transforming into a giant black dragon with glowing green eyes and the ability to breathe green flames.
  • Wizards: Blackwolf, an evil character, is depicted as turning a Bambi-like Deer into a dragon which the narrator describes as "torturing small animals." Ironically many viewers considered it rather awesome.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Dragonslayer: The dragon (the Vermithrax Pejorative) is just a beast (although one that is incredibly devastating), however from the point of view of many characters it is a demon in the flesh (being a living representation of one of the film's sub-plots, that The Magic Goes Away and is being replaced with Christianity... and the magic is not "going away" quietly).
  • Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God: The eponymous dragon god Faluzure is a creature of decay and undeath who the evil mage Damodar intends to awaken.
  • Godzilla.
    • King Ghidorah. In the Showa era, he was the cause of the extinction of life on Venus or Mars (depending on whether you saw the Japanese original or the English dub). Then there was the Rebirth of Mothra version who killed all the dinosaurs and wanted to eat the souls of children. And in the Monsterverse version, he's depicted with Satanic imagery, with one memorable scene showing him perched on top of a volcano, with a cross in the foreground, complete with a fiery and thunderous background.
    • Destoroyah's final form looks like a cross between a giant crab, a dragon, and Satan himself. He is treated as the most vile kaiju to face Godzilla, since he killed his son.
  • Yamato Takeru features a massive fire-breathing lightning-shooting version of the Yamata no Orochi which is the Scaled Up form of Big Bad Physical God Tsukuyomi.

  • The Chronicles of Narnia: Dragons appear to be representative of vice, such as in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader where Eustace is turned into one after indulging his greed.
  • The Crimson Shadow: Both dragons portrayed in the books are malicious beings. The second is even in league with the villain-they have a pact to share bodies, portrayed like the pacts with other demons his minions have.
  • The dragon from The Faerie Queene is seen attacking the Kingdom of Eden, viciously attack a shield with the symbol of the cross, burning the Tree of Life to the ground, and even spewing fire said to be just like the fires of Hell. Spenser lays it on pretty thick that he's trying to make his dragon a symbol of the Devil.
  • More often than not in the Fighting Fantasy franchise, you will discover that Dragons are very, very bad news. Several books in the series, including Temple of Terror, Night Dragon, Legend of Zagor, Eye of the Dragon, and a few others features dragons as absolutely dangerous opponents.
  • The Flight of Dragons by Peter Dickinson states that "the Devil, in Christianised art, becomes the dragon", claiming that this supports the premise that dragons were once real, because Christian allegory doesn't usually use mythological creatures.
  • Redwall: Snakes serve as the setting's stand-in for dragons and are portrayed as the most intractably evil of all species in the 'verse. The first one we meet, Asmodeus Poisonteeth, invokes this trope, sharing a name with a demon lord from Christian demonology, and stated in story to be the "devil himself."
  • The Saga of the Jomsvikings speculates that a sea-serpent seen in Hjorunga Bay is either the ghost of Bui guarding the two chests of gold he took with him to the sea-bottom, or else that it is "some evil spirit" which has taken possession of the treasure.
  • Saint George and the Dragon: The dragon defeated by Saint George, which was terrorizing towns eating people and livestock. George claims to have defeated the creature through the power of Christ, which implies the dragon is literally of demonic origin.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire zigzags this. Dragons are considered unusual animals and strongly associated with magic. To the Targaryens and the extinct Valyrian dragonlords of the past, they are considered bond creatures (if stubbornly independent), but to others they are terrifying. From the point of view of Westerosi before the Targaryen conquest, seeing dragons for the first time must have been like seeing demons from Hell (or their equivalent), particularly since a trio of them managed to conquer an entire continent with liberal use of dragonfire. At present, the hatchling of Daenerys' dragons has hastened the return of magic. This is not considered a good thing, because the return of magic also heralds the growing threat from the Others.
  • In The Summoner Trilogy, dragons and several similar creatures are varieties of demon, although demons in this trilogy are not always chaotic evil and are amoral, animal-like beings only as good or bad as their summoners, since they fill a Mon-like role in this setting. Salamanders, like Ignatius, are very much like small, wingless dragons, and they are later shown to transform into drakes, and eventually enormously-powerful true dragons. Only one of the latter appears, which acts as an Olympus Mons in the final battle.
  • Dragons, such as Smaug and Ancalagon the Black, are described in Tolkien's Legendarium as creations of Morgoth (the setting's Satanic Archetype) that are inherently evil as a whole. Glaurung, the Father of Dragons, may have been a corrupted Maia spirit, making him a literal demon.

    Live-Action TV 
  • One of the Demon Captains sent out by the Akuma Clan in Akumaizer 3 is Dragondar, a literal dragon demon.
  • Power Rangers Jungle Fury has Dai Shi, an ancient, eight-headed Chinese dragon. In the series' backstory, Dai Shi initiated the "Beast War", believing that humans should be destroyed and that animals should rule the planet. He was sealed away in a chest by the Order of the Claw until he was released and possessed Jarrod. He takes on his dragon form when he is separated from his host.

  • Gowan's Dragon compares industrialization to the Dragon of the Apocalypse.
    "Evil sire, breathing fire
    Belching smoke and fume
    Behold, the Face of Doom
    We can't stop runnin'
    The Dragon's comin'
    Death defiant man-made giant
    The sum of all we killed
    A living toxic will"

    Mythology and Religion 
  • Generally speaking, European and Christian folklore and iconography tend to portray dragons as either abominations against the natural order or fully demonic monstrosities, and they are often used to symbolize Satan. This is a large part of why knights are traditionally depicted slaying them — dragons represent sin and evil, knights are defenders of Christendom and often used to represent saints and angels, and the knight slaying the dragon thus shows godliness and good triumphing over Hell and evil.
    • In The Book of Revelation, Satan transforms into a seven-headed dragon so big that a sweep of his tail sends a third of the stars in the sky to Earth, and is likened to a dragon throughout the book. More generally, dragons in medieval Christian imagery were strongly associated with Hell and evil, often being out-and-out stand-ins for Satan and his demons. In other stories, they symbolize the sin of Greed.
    • Slavic Mythology: Dragons are only mostly associated with Satan and demons. "Zmey" — a distinct brand of three-headed dragon — are often antagonistic and most of them are affiliated with forces opposing God but are often explicitly said to be capable of converting to Christianity. This oddity makes a bit more sense when you consider they were most likely analogues to foreign invaders. note 
    • In the legend of The Lambton Worm, the eponymous dragon exists specifically as divine punishment for Sir John Lambton skipping church to go fishing, which was considered extremely improper at the time. Even after he's able to kill it, his family are hit by a Hereditary Curse for the next nine generations, so evil is the Worm.
    • In Christian iconography, there's a practice called "saint symbolism", where a given saint or angel will be consisted depicted with a few specific traits or an Iconic Item, so the viewer will know who they're supposed to be (e.g. Saint Peter is usually shown holding a key, because Jesus told him he would be given "the keys to the kingdom of Heaven" in Matthew 16:19). The Archangel Michael's symbolism shows him in the act of his greatest accomplishment, beating up Satan during the latter's rebellion. In this iconography, Satan is depicted as a dragon just as often as he is a Big Red Devil.
  • Apep (or Apophis, as the Greeks knew him), the evil Night Serpent of Egyptian Mythology, who seeks to devour all life to return the universe to the dark nothingness from whence it came. Apep is the eternal enemy of the sun god Ra, who defeats him every morning in battle as the sun rises once again.
  • Hindu Mythology: Vritra is an asura that takes the form of a serpentine dragon, and is a personification of drought. He attempted to hold the rivers of the world captive, but was slain by the storm-god deva Indra.
  • In Norse Mythology, Nidhoggr is a giant dragon that gnaws at the roots of Yggdrasil in hopes of destroying all worlds.
  • Orochi from Japanese Mythology, the eight-headed serpent dragon slain by Susano, god of thunderstorms, and a being powerful enough to frighten the earthly gods of the area into doing nothing as he eats their daughters.
  • In Persian myth there's Azhi Dahak, a three-headed dragon imprisoned beneath Mount Demavend is the Lord of Lies. In the Shahnameh he also possesses a foolish prince named Zahak, turning him into a tyrant and cannibal.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • Abyssal Drakes have a very dragon-like appearance, but are native to the Abyss and considered demons in all respects. They are said to be the result of an experiment conducted by the Demon Lords into cross-breeding red dragons, wyverns and demons into a beast that could be used as a steed, but were too strong-willed and broke free from their master's control.
    • Hellfire wyrms are extraplanar dragons from the Nine Hells, sent to the material plane to infiltrate societies and manipulate them and their rulers into committing evil acts, spreading death and misery, and ultimately damning themselves. They also breathe Hellfire and can turn into devils at will.
    • There are various evil draconic deities, including Tiamat, a goddess of greed who is also a member of the Forgotten Realms' main pantheon. This is balanced by good draconic deities like Bahamut.
    • The Abishai are a race of devils that have the appearance of Draconic Humanoids and serve as the servants and heralds of Tiamat within the Nine Hells.
    • Dark Sun: All dragons are the embodiment of the horrific, rapacious corruption of arcane magic on Athas, each one born from an act of genocide.
    • The Draconomicon in 3.5 features the Disciple of Ashardalon, a prestige class for evil dragons that have their hearts replaced with a demon. As they progress in such class, they get more demonic features and at the highest level they no longer are considered dragons but outsiders instead, as demons are.
  • In Iron Kingdoms, the core factions of each gameline have the same basic arrangement: Good-Ish Guys (Trollbloods, Cygnar), Well-Intentioned Extremist Guys (Menoth, Circle Orboros), Imperialistic and Kinda Dickish Guys (Skorne, Khador), and Straight-Up Bad Guys (Cryx, Everblight). In both lines, the Straight-Up Bad Guys faction is tied to dragons: Cryx is ruled by the first of the dragons, and their long-term objective is killing all of the other dragons so that Toruk can regain his full power, while Everblight is one of Toruk's spawn who has corrupted most of the Nyss elves. Aesthetically, Cryx is a horrible den of undead and black, hissing insect-like warjacks, while the forces of Everblight are a nightmarish mess of Body Horror mutations who direct blind monsters bred solely to kill against their enemies.
  • Pathfinder:
    • Chromatic dragons, as in D&D, are beings of evil and destruction and often worshiped by other mortal beings as living gods who must be appeased through sacrifice and lavish offerings. The metallic dragons usually avert this, but when they fall and tarnish they can become as evil and destructive as any chromatic.
    • One of two main dragon gods, Dahak, is a monstrous, sadistic brute who lives to spread pain and suffering, especially to his own draconic creations — he is explicitly described as having created the first mortal dragons in order to hunt them for sport. Even the chromatic dragons hate him.
    • The outer dragons — dragons native to the various planes of the afterlife — include some rather unpleasant natives of the Lower Planes. Hell dragons are horrific monsters in league with the devils and always seeking to damn souls to the flames of Hell, while the rift dragons of the Abyss are demonic entities who often make their way to the material plane to force mortals to worship them as demigods of suffering and destruction.
    • Yamaraj, psychopomps of the underworld who are covered in dark raven-like feathers, signifying death and decay and tasked with underworldly duties. Fittingly, some of them take the "hellish punisher" motif too far and revel in damning souls.
  • Magic: The Gathering:

    Video Games 
  • In the second Actraiser game, the embodiment of the sin of Greed is a dragon.
  • One of demons Bayonetta summons is Gomorrah, a gigantic vicious dragon. He is so huge that Bayonetta only brings out his head every time, and when we see him in full in the second game, he is easily the size of a multi-story building.
  • What's left of the Big Bad of Doom³ has fused with a giant demon dragon in the expansion pack Resurrection of Evil, and given that said demon dragon guards Hell itself, it's as literal as you can get.
  • The Doom mod Guncaster, fitting of the source game, has its dragon coloured a deep red and themed after demons. While he fights against said demons, he's certainly not much of a nice guy.
  • The Destroyer from Darksiders is quite literally a demon in the form of a dragon, leading The Legions of Hell on Earth in the aftermath of the End War. And is actually the Fallen Angel Abaddon after making a Deal with the Devil.
  • Diablo franchise:
    • Tathamet is a seven-headed dragon who is also known as the Prime Evil. It is said that when he was killed while fighting the warrior god Anu, his corpse reformed itself into the Burning Hells, and each of his seven heads became one of the Seven Great Evils, the demon lords who reign supreme over the other demons.
    • Also, in Median XL for Diablo II, you can fight dragons that are demonic spawn of Baal.
  • Dungeon Keeper has Demon Spawns, violent toad-like creatures that can be trained past the regular limit of Level 10 to turn into Level 4 Dragons.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
  • Final Fantasy: The six-headed dragon Tiamat is one of the Four Fiends whose evil is slowly killing the world.
  • Final Fantasy XIV features dragons, many of whom are demonic.
    • Bahamut, the elder primal, is a massive dragon that the ancient Allagans sealed in the artificial moon of Dalamud long ago. Near the end of the original version of the game, Bahamut broke free of its prison when Dalamud was brought down to Eorzea, after which it initiated a miniature apocalypse. Notably, however, the original Bahamut was actually a hero and kind ruler for his nation; the Bahamut we see in the game is a primal summoned by Tiamat, his consort/sister, in a state of grief and despair using the corrupted summoning spell taught to her by Ascians. The result is a distorted and inherently dangerous mockery of the real Bahamut, something that has haunted Tiamat for milennia.
    • The dragons of Dravania zig-zag this trope. For the most part, the native dragons do not take part in the war ongoing between dragonkind and the city-state of Ishgard, but are territorial and hostile towards outsiders. Some dragons are actually very wise and noble, and become allies of the heroes. More specifically, the dragons of Hraesvalgir's brood are uninvolved in the Dragonsong War and are merely territorial and distrustful of humans; the dragons of Nidhogg's brood are the participants in the war, answering Nidhogg's eternal call for vengeance (indeed, even if a given dragon of Nidhogg's brood doesn't want to fight, Nidhogg's call drives them insane if they refuse it for long). Because dragons develop their bodies to reflect their own identities, the war- and vengeance-minded dragons of Nidhogg's brood appear more demonic and menacing.
    • Near the end of the Heavensward post-game storyline, a dragon rivaling the ferocity and danger of Bahamut appears; Shinryu, a dragon primal created by the desperation of Ala Mhigan insurgents led by Ilberd. At the end of Stormblood, Shinryu serves as the Final Boss after being hijacked by Zenos.
    • Endwalker elaborates further on the past of dragons and their nature. The dragons once lived on their own planet, as a peaceful and thriving society, until the Omicron suddenly invaded. The dragons fought back fiercly, but were ultimately defeated; the Omicron left after achieving only a Pyrrhic Victory, leaving the planet a desolate wasteland. Midgardsormr fled the planet with a clutch of seven eggs to seek out a new planet to settle on, with Omega pursuing the most powerful of all dragons across the stars. After a very long journey, Midgardsormr found Etheirys, and settled there, while Omega also arrived, but was severely damaged by the incredibly long journey, and thus entered hibernation. This makes the dragons of Etheirys the last of their kind...sort of.
    • Endwalker also shows us another of the First Brood: Vrtra. His appearance is even more deadly-looking than Nidhogg, a fact that causes him much angst. He fears that the humans he secretly rules over would view him as a monster and thus spark a war. When the events of Endwalker occur, Vrtra is encouraged by Estinien to come out of hiding and openly reveal himself as their true ruler and declare that he would directly and openly fight to protect them. When he does, he is viewed with awe, reverence, and gratitude, fully allaying his fears and proving that his menacing appearance is more than offset by his heroic deeds, humble and gentle demeanor, and kind words.
  • Fire Emblem: Dragons tend to be enemy characters throughout the series. Wyvern riders are also a common sight in enemy armies. Even Dragons who are not evil are in danger of going insane and entering a Kill All Humans state of wildness if they don't conserve their power. The common enemy dragons are as follows:
    • Fire Dragons are immense dragons described as capable of incinerating everything in their path, and have wings made of flame. They have a long history of mutual antagonism with humanity. Aside from one individual in the first game, and its sequel, all Fire Dragons are enemy characters.
    • image Mage Dragons, sometimes translated as Demon Dragons are snake-like Dark Purple Dragons that seal all magic attacks while dealing damage with their magically infused breath. All Mage Dragons are enemy characters in the series, either members of an evil empire, or having fallen to the madness listed above.
    • Earth Dragons are gigantic armored dragons with features of crocodiles, komodo dragons, and various dinosaurs. Earth Dragons command the forces of the earth, and shadow, being one of the strongest dragons. Virtually all Earth Dragons fell victim to insanity mentioned above, were the most dangerous of the mad Dragons, and were sealed. The few survivors are also enemy characters. Some have reached an advanced form known as a Shadow Dragon which is unsurpassed in power.
    • Fire Emblem Gaiden:
      • Duma, the God of Power, is revealed in Echoes to be a Divine Dragon suffering from dragon degeneration, and has the ability to turn people into Witches by having their soul offered to him, and can turn the corpses of fallen dragons into Necrodragons. His class is also Fell God (Evil God in Japan), he uses Fell Dragon magic (evil magic in Japan), he summons evil beings from the darkness, he has a single glowing red eye, and his body is darkly colored with tattered wings.
      • The Brethren in Echoes are living dragons that are a common enemy in dungeons who are implied to have gone completely feral from dragon degeneration.
    • Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War: Loptous, an Earth Dragon who escaped being sealed under the Dragon's Table through blood-bonding with the bishop Galle, is often described as less of a regular (albeit evil) dragon, and more something akin to an Enemy Within due to his heavy association with darkness, habit of Demonic Possession of those with major Loptous blood through his eponymous tome, and having a whole Religion of Evil based around him. He is the archenemy of Naga, the leader of the Divine Dragons.
    • Elibe games: This setting has its dragons sent to another dimension after losing a war against humanity. While both played dirty in the war, it was actually humanity that started the war. The prequel Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade has an Evil Sorceror attempt to unleash Dragons on the war as part of a plot to get revenge on the world. The sequel Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade has a has the last dragon soldier left on the continent team up with a nihilistic King to restart the dragons ancient line of artificial Dragon soldiers, and use them to conquer humanity in favor of dragonkind. Fittingly the dragon they use produce these soldiers is literally called the Demon Dragon.
    • The Fell Dragon Grima from Fire Emblem Awakening is also Naga's greatest rival, and is also an evil dragon that possesses a suitable host and surrounds himself with a death cult of fanatical supporters, the Grimeal. Much like Loptous, his plan for full resurrection involves the use of a suitable host bred for the task, in this case the Avatar. Grima himself is a fiendish-looking city-sized monstrosity with multiple eyes. On top of that, Shadows of Valentia reveals that he's the result of a dark alchemy experiment that sought to create the perfect lifeform.
    • In Fire Emblem Fates, King Garon transforms into the Blight Dragon during the final battle of Birthright, complete with glowing red eyes.
  • The Storm Rider in Kingdom Hearts II is a dragon that was corrupted into a Heartless by Xigbar of Organization XIII.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Volvagia from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was an ancient dragon who terrorized the Gorons before being slain by a Goron wielding the Megaton Hammer. Ganondorf ends up reviving Volvagia in a plot to feed all the Gorons to him as punishment for defying his regime.
    • Onox, General of Darkness, main villain of The Legend of Zelda Oracle of Seasons. He spends most of the game in the form of a humanoid knight rather like a Darknut, but his One-Winged Angel form is a huge black dragon.
    • Argorok from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is a wyvern who possesses a shard of the Mirror of Twilight, and a malevolent being who terrorizes the Oocca of the City in the Sky.
  • Urgash the Dragon God of Chaos from the Ashan series of Heroes of Might and Magic exists as a Satanic Archetype in opposition to his sister Asha, goddess of Order and creator of the world, and fathered the first demons as a mockery of her claiming the right to creation.
  • While genuine dragons in the Dragon Age series are basically large, bad-tempered carnivores, there are some elements of this: dragon blood can defile holy relics in spectacular fashion, the dragon cult you encounter is evil and practices human sacrifice, and most notably, the Archdemons that lead the darkspawn Blights take the form of enormous dragons (as does Ambiguously Evil witch Flemeth, but that's mostly because it's powerful; Archdemons don't appear in any other form).
  • In the Metroid series, the Space Pirate commander Ridley fits the description perfectly. He's a skeletal western-styled dragon with the head of a pterosaur, armed with a fiery breath and a dagger-like tail that he uses to impale his enemies. And if that wasn't enough, his usual domain is Norfair, a subterranean Lethal Lava Land with hellish heat, and his tendency to cheat death and bring terror to even the bravest heroes (such as Samus Aran) has earned him the moniker "Cunning God of Death".
  • While several Elder Dragons in the Monster Hunter franchise tend to fall either in Dragons Are Divine or Draconic Abomination, there are a specific few Elder Dragons that are a cut above the rest, called the Black Dragons, who are far more demonic, ominous, and intelligent than their more animalistic bretheren:
    • The most classic example in the franchise is Fatalis, a Western dragon who destroyed an entire kingdom singlehandendly, is rumored to be able to have Resurrective Immortality, and humans are so scared of it they only put the best of the best they have to kill it whenever one shows up.
    • Alatreon, while not as Ax-Crazy as its fellow Black Dragons, is still an incredibly dangerous Elder Dragon who pretty much makes any habitat he decides to live on as inhospitable as possible so only he can live alone and in peace.
    • Dire Miralis is a gigantic Walking Wasteland Elder Dragon who sinks islands just by walking into them, boils the ocean he walks on, and is even called demonic in some item descriptions.
    • While not officially considered a Black Dragon, the first Siege boss of Iceborne, Safi'jiiva, has all the qualifications of the classical, medieval interpretations of dragons: Hellish red scales, long black horns, can drain the lifeforce of other living beings or even the land itself to feed itself (as if 'stealing their souls').
    • Magnamalo is not an Elder Dragon at all, rather a Fanged Wyvern, but it is a feared monster known as the "Wyvern of Malice" and thematically has a distinctly demonic bent, the purple flame it uses to attack even being dubbed "hellfire".
    • Gaismagorm, the final boss of Sunbreak is expressly called the "Archdemon of the Abyss", primarily uses attacks which resemble hellfire, crawls its way out of the depths akin to Hell, and has a Flower Mouth resembling a pentagram. The monster itself is made as one gigantic reference to the Devil itself as a dragon.
  • Ukkuhr-Makhai, the Great Stygian Dragon from the Nexus War games. He was formed from a festering mass of chaos that grew teratoma-style in the pustulent flesh of Tholaghru, the infernal Nexal god of chaos and Body Horror, which eventually clawed itself free. In the first Nexus game he then wandered randomly around Stygia, devouring all in his wake and generally acting as That One Boss when challenged by raiding parties.
  • Ninja Gaiden Dragon Sword has the Dark Dragon. Originally one of the 13 Divine Dragons, the Dark Dragon was corrupted by Vigoor and turned against his brothers.
  • Pokémon:
    • Giratina, first introduced in Gen IV, is the third member of the creation trio, a Ghost/Dragon type who was banished to the Distortion World by Arceus for its violence, and has a particularly evil-looking appearance, though it isn't inherently evil.
    • Hydreigon from Gen V is a three headed Dark/Dragon type that is described as being willing to attack and devour anything in its path, and is also the strongest Pokémon of Ghetsis, the Unova duology's main villain.
    • Dragalge from Gen VI is a Poison/Dragon type that will sink any ships entering its territory with their acidic poison.
    • Pokémon Sun and Moon introduces UB-05 Glutton, aka Guzzlord, an eldritch looking Dark/Dragon type Ultra Beast that can devour whole buildings and even mountains and seas. The Ultra Ruins in Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are implied to be an alternate Hau'oli City that was devoured by Guzzlord following a power plant accident.
    • Mega Charizard X definitely looks the part with its Spikes of Villainy, black skin and red eyes. However, it's of the Dark Is Not Evil variety.
  • While Bowser tends to flirt with this trope due to being a draconic turtle monster who rules over a near-literal Hell on Earth, he goes all in with it in the Bowser's Fury expansion for Super Mario 3D World. There, he takes on the form of a jet-black kaiju-sized monstrosity called Fury Bowser, who will occasionally awaken and go on violent rampages that turn the peaceful Lake Lapcat into a dark and stormy hellhole while he assaults Mario and Bowser Jr with volleys of massive spikes from his shell, storms of enormous fireballs, and jets of fire reminiscent of Godzilla's atomic breath. He's also constantly secreting an inky, tarlike substance that turns out to be paint from Bowser Jr's magic paintbrush that reacted strangely to an angry outburst, which mars the lake's beautiful scenery and is very dangerous to touch.
  • The dragons in Tales of Zestiria are particularly powerful Hellions, and thus are evil by definition. Only a few are encountered during the game, and they are all extremely dangerous foes.
  • Warcraft:
    • Dragons were inherently evil in Warcraft II, used by orcs as flying shock troops. Warcraft III had them released from the orcs' mind control into a more neutral position, though their leaders are either good (Alexstrasza, the formerly imprisoned Dragonqueen) or evil (Deathwing, pictured above).
    • Expanded further in World of Warcraft. Black dragons (like Deathwing) are Always Chaotic Evil due to being corrupted by the Old Gods. The other flights are usually neutral or good, but dip into evil on occasion. The blue dragons became antagonists in Wrath of the Lich King when their leader went insane. The time-travelling bronze dragons become the evil Infinite Dragonflight in a possible future, and frequently attempt to muck with the timestream. Green dragons are occasionally warped by the Emerald Nightmare, a corrupted version of the dream realm they usually reside in. Red dragons are the only flight to fully avert this, although some have been driven to insanity before, and they were the flight mind-controlled by the orcs in Warcraft II.
    • Aside from the natural flights, there are also chromatic dragons, which are artificial dragons made from the blood of all five flights, and nether dragons, made by exposing black dragon eggs to the Twisting Nether. Both are creations of the Black Dragonflight, but while the Twilight dragons retain the corrupted nature from the Black Dragonflight, nether dragons are surprisingly not inherently evil.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles has only three dragons, but they're the strongest group of monsters in the game, with the latter two dragons even dropping Demonic Everflames once defeated:
    • Dragon King Alcar is the antepenultimate boss of the story, guarding the way to the roof of Prison Island, serving as almost a literal example of The Dragon due to it blocking the way to the Big Bad's realm.
    • Demon King Dragonia attacks Colony 6's ether planters once it reaching 90% completion and must be defeated as a result.
    • Avalanche Abassy is one of the superbosses, appears at night on Valak Mountain during a raging blizzard, and is the most powerful enemy in the game.

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY:
    • The dragon variant of the Grimm is noted to be the most powerful and dangerous of them, and is capable of summoning other kinds of Grimm.
    • The sea dragon Grimm that Blake and Sun fight in Volume 4 is an unusual take on this trope, as its appearance is based off of Eastern dragons rather than the typical Western ones.

  • Invoked in Draconia Chronicles. Female dragons look an awful lot like succubi, and the emblem on their flag is an inverse pentagram. The males, however, are more like eastern dragons in temperament, being wise and peaceful for all their immense power.

    Web Original 
  • While not literally demonic because they lack the rot associated with demons, dragons in Pact are malevolent beings formed from something feeding into itself when the stars align just right. This can take the form of things such as a god worshipping itself or an elemental spirit absorbing more than it puts out. Treated as being among the most powerful of Others with no real weaknesses, the only surefire ways of defeating them include fighting them directly while being backed by a god or being overwhelmed by a bigger source of whatever they embody.

    Western Animation 


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Dark Dragon, Dragons Are Evil, Demonic Dragon, Evil Dragon


Smaug Attacks Erebor

Drawn by the immense amount of gold stockpiled by the dwarf king Thror, Smaug the dragon, after attacking the city of Dale, invaded Erebor to claim the gold as his own.

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