Dragonsplague is the scourge of Dragon's Dogma 2, how can you prevent it?

Dragonsplague is the scourge of Dragon's Dogma 2, how can you prevent it?
Images via Capcom

Written by 

Dave McAdam


25th Mar 2024 16:32

If you've encountered Dragonsplague in Dragon's Dogma 2, you probably have a lot of questions about it. The long-awaited sequel continues the series' tradition of being obtuse and difficult in strange ways, by introducing an infectious disease that could destroy the game if left unchecked.

Yes, Dragonsplague can destroy the entire game - that is not an exaggeration - unless you know how to recognise it and how to prevent it. To make sure you're prepared for this deadly disease (in more ways than one) here's everything you need to know.

What is Dragonsplague?

Dragonsplague is a contagious disease that your Pawns can catch. It originates from Dragons and Drakes, but it can spread among Pawns who are in contact with each other. The latter is the more likely way you will encounter it. If you happen to hire a Pawn who has the disease, it may spread to your other Pawns.

As mentioned, it starts when fighting Dragons or Drakes, as they can infect your Pawns with the disease. They have a particular attack, one where they grab one of your Pawns, stand up on their hind legs, and stare at the Pawn in their hand. This strange attack is how Dragonsplague begins, and you only have a matter of days to deal with it.

Pawns standing around the player in Dragon's Dogma 2
Click to enlarge

Initially, the plague will have little effect on the Pawn - but over the coming days, they will start to change and exhibit strange behaviour. After a few days, when you rest at an inn you will see a cutscene of your Pawn succumbing to the disease. This sends the Pawn into a blood frenzy, and when you wake you will discover they have killed many if not all of the local people.

This is why Dragonsplague is so deadly: a lot of people will die if you don't catch it in time. This includes traders and quest-givers; even people critical to the main story can be killed this way. With a problem so severe, what can we do about it?

What to do when your Pawn is infected

Going to a Riftstone to dismiss infected Pawns in DD2
Click to enlarge

There are two ways to deal with the disease once it infects one of your Pawns, depending on whether it has infected your main Pawn or one of your hires. If it is a hired Pawn, the solution is simple enough. You need only dismiss them at a Riftstone to avoid the consequences. After dismissing an infected Pawn, keep an eye on the others as the plague may have spread to them (we will explain how to spot the plague below).

If your main Pawn becomes infected, more drastic action is needed. As you cannot dismiss your main Pawn, you will need to kill them. This is most easily done by throwing them into a body of water, where the Brine will make quick work of them. After that, you can resummon your Pawn and they will return plague-free.

How to spot symptoms of Dragonsplague

Pawns discussing the effects of Dragonsplague in DD2
Click to enlarge

There is little you can do to prevent your Pawns from becoming infected, outside of sticking with the same group of Pawns forever and never fighting any Drakes or Dragons. As these are unfortunately unrealistic goals, we need to be vigilant as Dragonsplague is all but inevitable.

There are three main symptoms of the infection, and they aren't difficult to spot. The first one you might notice is your Pawn showing signs of being in pain. They will hold their head in their hands, and they will do this quite a lot if they are infected.

The second symptom is that the Pawn will start to become unruly as the plague infects their mind. As the bloodlust takes them over, they will start to behave erratically, questioning your orders and generally just being sassy. If your Pawn is usually very cooperative but suddenly starts talking back to you like a hormonal teenager, this means they are infected.

The third and most obvious symptom is that the Pawn's eyes will begin to glow red. This will be more subtle at first, as their eyes will slowly pulse red at first, but over time it will become very noticeable. If your Pawn has bright, glowing red eyes all the time, do not rest at an inn. They are likely fully infected at this point and if you rest, they will go on a killing spree while you sleep.

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That's it for our guide to Dragonsplague and how to deal with it. For more, head to our Dragon's Dogma 2 homepage where we have guides on changing your appearance, how to make camp, how to upgrade armour & weapons, how to delete your save & start a new game (which might be necessary if the Dragonsplague gets out of hand), or the best mods for the game, which can help you avoid it altogether.

Dave is a Senior Guides Writer at GGRecon, after several years of freelancing across the industry. He covers a wide range of games, with particular focus on shooters like Destiny 2, RPGs like Baldur's Gate 3 and Cyberpunk 2077, and fighting games like Street Fighter 6 and Tekken 8.

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