|An ancient serpent of the world's deepest places, the dragon's immense form belies its lightning-quick speed and testifies to its breathtaking strength. An undying furnace of white-hot flames burns within its scaly hide, and few could withstand a single moment under its infernal lash.|
Dragons are extremely dangerous even to high-level characters with a strong build. In melee, characters with enchanted plate armour will be able to avoid some of their attacks, but their defence is so high that no character will hit them more than around 35% of the time. The only monster with more HP is the golem. Their ability to breathe fire is much more dangerous than the firebolt spell other creatures may cast - it produces a firebolt as from a +18 Staff of Firebolt, rather than a +4 one, dealing 15-49 points of damage.
The best way to deal with dragons is often to avoid them, since taking one on is almost always risking death. If you know there's a dragon on the level, telepathy might help you to track and avoid it.
If you need to deal with the dragon without the risk of a fight, polymorphing it isn't too dangerous, as by the time you encounter dragons you should be able to deal with any other single monster. A Potion of Descent will at least postpone meeting it until the next level.
If you want to take on a dragon with at a range, drinking a Potion of Fire Immunity or negating it are good ways to avoid being toasted. Negating it will also remove its fire immunity, so you can attack it with firebolts. You may also use a high level Staff of Poison on it, and hide, waiting for the poison to kill it.
| The charming inhabitants of the dungeon: