Invasion plans
This article is a strategy guide for Black dragon.
Information on mechanics, setups, and tactics is on this page.

Black dragons have amongst the highest defence for a normal monster in RuneScape - their melee defence is quite high, so using melee against them is not advisable. Despite this, they are weak to ranged attacks, and are most vulnerable to crossbow bolts.

They attack with a Fire Bolt spell that usually damages in the low 300s, as well as a long-distance dragonbreath attack. As with all dragons, an anti-dragon shield, a dragonfire shield, super antifire potion or Protect from Magic prayer are essential when fighting them, although it is possible for higher levels to get by using only Soul split. Without one of these forms of protection, players can be hit extremely hard by dragonfire (over 2000 points of damage). Lower-leveled players could potentially be killed in one hit by this attack. However, when using one of the listed protections, a player will be hit for much less. (Praying against magic reduces the average damage to about 250, as well as weakening their main magic attack.) An anti-fire potion used in addition to the shield will reduce the damage dealt by the breath to just one point. Additionally, players with a Herblore level of 85 may use a super antifire potion which negates the dragon's breath without the need of an anti-dragon shield or protection prayers, allowing players to safely use a two-handed weapon or dual-wield weapons with less need for prayer.

The dragon's melee attacks are only used if the player is in melee range. Thus, if ranging or maging, it is advisable to stay out of the reach of their melee attack. These monsters are primarily weak to bolts, which allows use of an Anti-dragon shield for relatively safe kills with a one-handed crossbow. However, if you wish to attain the fastest kill rates (through dual wielded or 2-handed crossbows), you will need Protect from Magic or Super antifire potions.

Recommended setupsEdit

As of the Evolution of Combat update, black dragons are magic based creatures, which gives a considerable penalty to melee accuracy. Because of this and their extremely high defence, at least chaotic weaponry is required for a consistent kill rate, and even then is not recommended unless there is no other alternative.

Recommended equipment for Melee
Slot Item (most effective → least effective)
Head slot Torva full helm Torva full helm Bandos helmet Bandos helmet Dragon full helm Dragon full helm Full slayer helmet Full slayer helmet Slayer helmet Slayer helmet
Neck slot Amulet of fury Amulet of fury Amulet of glory Amulet of glory N/A N/A N/A
Back slot Completionist cape Completionist cape Max cape Max cape TokHaar-Kal-Ket TokHaar-Kal-Ket Fire cape Fire cape Constitution cape Skill cape
Torso slot Torva platebody Torva platebody Bandos chestplate Bandos chestplate Dragon platebody Dragon platebody Granite body Granite body N/A
Legs slot Torva platelegs Torva platelegs Bandos tassets Bandos tassets Dragon platelegs Dragon platelegs Granite legs Granite legs N/A
Main hand slot Drygore longsword Drygore weaponry Blade of Nymora Blade of Nymora
Tetsu katana Tetsu katana
Lava whip Lava whip
Chaotic longsword Chaotic weaponry
Attuned crystal dagger Attuned crystal dagger
Abyssal vine whip Abyssal vine whip
Korasi's sword Korasi's sword
Abyssal whip Abyssal whip
Blisterwood sickle Blisterwood sickle
Crystal dagger Crystal dagger
2h slot Noxious scythe Noxious scythe Dragon Rider lance Dragon Rider lance
Mizuyari Mizuyari
Attuned crystal halberd Attuned crystal halberd
Chaotic maul Chaotic maul
Chaotic spear spear
Sunspear (melee) Sunspear (melee)
Armadyl godsword Godswords
Zamorakian spear Zamorakian spear
Saradomin sword Saradomin sword
Crystal halberd Crystal halberd
Dharok's greataxe Barrows equipment
Blisterwood polearm Blisterwood polearm
Off-hand weapon slot Off-hand drygore rapier Drygore weaponry Blade of Avaryss Blade of Avaryss
Tetsu wakizashi Tetsu wakizashi
Off-hand chaotic rapier Chaotic weaponry Jessika's sword Jessika's sword Enhanced Excalibur Enhanced Excalibur
Off-hand blisterwood sickle Off-hand blisterwood sickle
Off-hand slot Divine spirit shield Divine spirit shield Chaotic kiteshield Chaotic kiteshield Dragonfire shield Dragonfire shield Anti-dragon shield (mole) Anti-dragon shield (mole) Anti-dragon shield Anti-dragon shield
Gloves slot Goliath gloves (red) Goliath gloves Torva gloves Torva gloves Culinaromancer's gloves 10 Barrows gloves Culinaromancer's gloves 9 Dragon gloves Regen bracelet Regen bracelet
Feet slot Torva boots Torva boots Steadfast boots Steadfast boots Bandos boots Bandos boots Dragon boots Dragon boots Rune boots Rune boots
Ring slot TokKul-Zo TokKul-Zo Warrior ring (i) Warrior ring (i) Onyx ring (i) Onyx ring (i) Berserker ring (i) Berserker ring (i) Ring of wealth Ring of wealth
Aura slot Supreme reverence aura Supreme reverence aura Master reverence aura Master reverence aura Greater reverence aura Greater reverence aura Reverence aura Reverence aura N/A

Note: Always use Turmoil, Piety,Chivalry or the Incredible Reflexes and Ultimate Strength prayers. These dragons have extremely high melee defence and a good amount of health, boosting your offence is a must if you wish to obtain a worthwhile kill rate. A good amount of overloads is also recommended for a higher damage output.

Since they hit hard so frequently, it may be advisable to use a deflect curse, preferably Deflect Magic, to reflect some of their damage back to them.

Recommended equipment for Ranged
Slot Item (most effective → least effective)
Head slot Full slayer helmet Full slayer helmet
(only for task)
Focus sight Focus sight (only for task) Void knight ranger helm Void knight ranger helm (Void only) Pernix cowl Pernix cowl Armadyl helmet Armadyl helmet
Karil's coif Karil's coif
Neck slot Saradomin's murmur Saradomin's murmur Amulet of ranging Amulet of ranging Amulet of fury Amulet of fury Amulet of glory Amulet of glory N/A
Back slot Completionist cape Completionist cape Ava's alerter Ava's alerter Ava's accumulator Ava's accumulator Ava's attractor Ava's attractor N/A
Torso slot Void knight top Void knight top Pernix body Pernix body Armadyl chestplate Armadyl chestplate Karil's top Karil's top Royal dragonhide body Royal dragonhide body
Legs slot Void knight robe Void knight robe Pernix chaps Pernix chaps Armadyl chainskirt Armadyl chainskirt Royal dragonhide chaps Royal dragonhide chaps Black dragonhide chaps Black dragonhide chaps
Main hand slot Ascension crossbow Ascension crossbow Shadow glaive Shadow glaive
Death Lotus dart Death Lotus dart
Chaotic crossbow Chaotic crossbow
Attuned crystal chakram Attuned crystal chakram
Armadyl crossbow Armadyl crossbow Sagaie Sagaie
Karil's pistol crossbow Karil's pistol crossbow
Blisterwood stake Blisterwood stake
Crystal chakram Crystal chakram
2h slot Noxious longbow Noxious longbow Wyvern crossbow Wyvern crossbow Royal crossbow Royal crossbow
Zaryte bow Zaryte bow
Sunspear (ranged) Sunspear (ranged)
Hand cannon Hand cannon
Karil's crossbow Karil's crossbow
Black salamander Black salamander
Crystal bow Crystal bow
Off-hand weapon slot Off-hand Ascension crossbow Off-hand Ascension crossbow Off-hand shadow glaive Off-hand shadow glaive
Off-hand Death Lotus dart Off-hand Death Lotus dart
Off-hand chaotic crossbow Off-hand chaotic crossbow
Off-hand attuned crystal chakram Off-hand attuned crystal chakram
Off-hand Armadyl crossbow Off-hand Armadyl crossbow Karil's off-hand pistol crossbow Karil's off-hand pistol crossbow
Off-hand blisterwood stake Off-hand blisterwood stake
Off-hand crystal chakram Off-hand crystal chakram
Off-hand slot Elysian spirit shield Elysian spirit shield Eagle-eye kiteshield Eagle-eye kiteshield Dragonfire deflector Dragonfire deflector Void knight deflector Void knight deflector (void only) N/A
Ammo slot Dragonbane arrow 5 Dragonbane arrows
Dragonbane bolt 5 Dragonbane bolts (After Ritual of the Mahjarrat)
Araxyte arrow 5 Araxyte arrows
Ascension bolts 4 Ascension bolts
Wyvern spines 5 Wyvern spines (crossbow only) Royal bolts 5 Royal bolts
(crossbow only)
Hand cannon shot Hand cannon shot
Bolt rack 5 Bolt racks
Harralander tar Harralander tar (with respective weapons)
Gloves slot Void knight gloves Void knight gloves Pernix gloves Pernix gloves Armadyl gloves Armadyl gloves Mercenary's gloves Mercenary's gloves Swift gloves (red) Swift Gloves
Feet slot Pernix boots Pernix boots Glaiven boots Glaiven boots Armadyl boots Armadyl boots Ranger boots Ranger boots Skirmisher boots (60) Skirmisher boots
Ring slot Archers' ring (i) Archers' ring (i) Archers' ring Archers' ring Berserker ring (i) Berserker ring (i) Berserker ring Berserker ring Ring of wealth Ring of wealth
Aura slot Vampyrism aura Vampyrism aura N/A N/A N/A N/A

Ranged is by far the most effective way of slaying black dragons. The best setup would include the usage of two-handed or dual wielded ranged weapons and super antifires. If one does not have access to super antifires, regular antifires / protect from magic / deflect magic are viable options but then you will need to bring along food. If using dual wielded weapons, it is a good idea to use Needle Strike before using more powerful attacks such as Snipe or Snap-Shot.

Notes: If you do not own a void set (deflector optional) and you are killing these off-task, you can use the on-task gear to replace it, but void will lead to faster kills, especially if using a strong crossbow. You can range black dragons without antifire measures if you are very careful, by using a weapon with a large attack range, such as the Royal crossbow. You can also bring an antifire shield to use only when running out of your safespot to pick up drops. Remember, at least three pieces of Void knight equipment must be worn along with the Void ranger helm to receive the set effect. With the addition of the Void knight deflector, players could swap out one of the pieces (other than the helm) for other equipment, but this disallows the ability to dual wield and still requires super antifires, so is not recommended. Note: It is highly recommended to use prayers like Eagle Eye and Rigour to speed up kills, as well as (extreme) ranging potions. If using these prayers however, it is advisable to keep an eye on your prayer points, especially if using a bow without super antifires. If your prayer drops and you don't have other dragonfire protection, the dragonbreath can deal large (and potentially fatal) amounts of damage.

Using magic against black dragons is quite effective. With the use of 2-handed weapons, Protect from Magic, Deflect Magic, antifire potions, or super antifire potions are needed.

Recommended equipment for Magic
Slot Item (most effective → least effective)
Head slot Full slayer helmet Full slayer helmet
Slayer helmet Slayer helmet
Hexcrest Hexcrest
(only for task)
Ganodermic visor Ganodermic visor
Hood of subjugation Hood of subjugation Batwing hood Batwing hood Mystic hat (blue) Mystic hat N/A
Neck slot Arcane stream necklace Arcane stream necklace Amulet of fury Amulet of fury Amulet of glory Amulet of glory N/A N/A
Back slot Completionist cape Completionist cape Max cape Max cape TokHaar-Kal-Mej TokHaar-Kal-Mej Fire cape Fire cape Constitution cape Skill cape
Torso slot Ganodermic poncho Ganodermic poncho Garb of subjugation Garb of subjugation Batwing torso Batwing torso Mystic robe top (blue) Mystic robe top N/A
Legs slot Ganodermic leggings Ganodermic leggings Gown of subjugation Gown of subjugation Batwing legs Batwing legs Mystic robe bottom (blue) Mystic robe bottom N/A
Main hand slot Seismic wand Seismic wand Wand of the Cywir elders Wand of the Cywir elders
Seasinger kiba Seasinger kiba
Virtus wand Virtus wand Abyssal wand Abyssal wand Wand of treachery Wand of treachery
Ahrim's wand Ahrim's wand
Blisterwood wand Blisterwood wand
2h slot Noxious staff Noxious staff Staff of darkness Staff of darkness
Camel staff Camel staff
Chaotic staff Chaotic staff Armadyl battlestaff Armadyl battlestaff
Staff of light Staff of light
Polypore staff Polypore staff
Ahrim's staff Ahrim's staff
Blisterwood staff Blisterwood staff
Off-hand weapon slot Seismic singularity Seismic singularity Seasinger makigai Seasinger makigai Virtus book Virtus book Abyssal orb Abyssal orb Ahrim's book of magic Ahrim's book of magic
Blisterwood orb Blisterwood orb
Off-hand slot Divine spirit shield Divine spirit shield
(with magic prayer or super antifire)
Chaotic kiteshield Chaotic kiteshield
(with magic prayer or super antifire)
Dragonfire shield Dragonfire shield Anti-dragon shield Anti-dragon shield N/A
Gloves slot Ganodermic gloves Ganodermic gloves Gloves of subjugation Gloves of subjugation Culinaromancer's gloves 10 Barrows gloves
Culinaromancer's gloves 9 Dragon gloves
Culinaromancer's gloves 8 Rune gloves
Regen bracelet Regen bracelet Dragon slayer gloves Dragon slayer gloves (only for task)
Feet slot Ganodermic boots Ganodermic boots Boots of subjugation Boots of subjugation Batwing boots Batwing boots Mystic boots (blue) Mystic boots N/A
Ring slot TokKul-Zo TokKul-Zo Seers' ring (i) Seers' ring (i) Ring of wealth Ring of wealth Explorer's ring 4 Explorer's ring 4 N/A

Wands can be used in combination with an anti-dragon shield, but the damage output is far less than using antifire potions with a staff.

Using abilities is key in killing black dragons. Build up adrenaline to +50%, then using threshold abilities like Asphyxiate and Wild Magic will probably most likely result in a kill.

It is recommended to stay within melee distance if a player has high defence, is using full ganodermic or if a player is using only one protection method, doing this will make the dragon attack less with dragonfire.