Landvættir are enormous behemoths, the biggest ones reaching up to the size of a large three-story building and the smallest at least as large as a small house. They are powerful beasts, with long, spiked, and heavily muscled tails capable of sweeping away scores of enemies, and very large, sharp teeth. Unlike some dragons, landvættir have powerful limbs with enormous claws, fully capable of ripping enemies apart. They have thick, durable scales that act as armor, capable of withstanding heavy physical blows and magic (up to a certain point, of course). They can be many different colors, but tend towards certain shades, depending on their birthplace; fire landvættir are typically red or orange, water are blue or white, air are light, pastel colors, and earth are brown or green. Landvættir are also strong fliers, with large, strong bat-like wings capable of carrying them for long distances.
As the dragons of a magical class, landvættir are also quite strong magically. Each landvættir has its own elemental affinity, typically linked to its birthplace. They have elemental breath which changes depending on their affinity, and are generally adapted to their environment, though they all share the characteristics listed above. Fire landvættir breathe fire and can withstand extremely high temperatures. Water landvættir are the most varied type, and change depending on their birthplace. Swamp landvættir spit deadly poison; ocean, lake, and river landvættir can intake and store huge amounts of water and spit it out as necessary, and can also breathe underwater; glacier landvættir breathe ice and can withstand very cold temperatures. Air landvættir can blow extremely strong winds, up to 300 mph; they are better at flying than other dragons, and thrive in extremely high altitudes. Finally, earth landvættir eat rocks, and can regurgitate them to spit out sharp shrapnel; they are also skilled diggers.
Wild landvættir, despite their fearsome abilities, are typically peaceful unless provoked. Each landvættir is born in a certain place, often in extreme conditions. Fire landvættir are born in places with volcanic activity, like the Evercrest Mountains; water in various locations (swamps, lakes or the ocean, glaciers); air on very tall mountains; and earth in dry, rocky areas, like the northern Bemol Plains. Landvættir are hatched from eggs laid in these areas; they do not raise their young, and newborn landvættir are expected to fend for themselves. Unless called to be a rider's dragon, landvættir will stay in their birthplace for the duration of their long lives (landvættir can live to be up to 1000 years old). A landvættir's territory and the beings living in it are referred to as the landvættir's protectorate. Landvættir will defend their protectorate with their very lives. They are territorial and will fight other dragons that enter their protectorate, but generally leave other visitors alone so long as they do not disturb the protectorate. If the visitors do damage the landvættir's protectorate, the landvættir will drive them out at any cost.
Because of their dedication to their protectorates, landvættir generally do not take very well to being called at first. However, once they warm up to their riders, landvættir are very loyal and dedicated -- among the very best dragons. They come to regard their rider as their new protectorate, and will protect them at any cost.
Very rarely, if their egg was moved frequently between different environments, a landvættir may be born without a protectorate and an affinity for all four elements. These landvættir typically do not live for very long; the various adaptations of elemental landvættir do not mix well together, and landvættir without a set protectorate are lost and confused. More often than not, mutant landvættir tear themselves apart or die due to physical deformities. In the rare occasion that they do survive, however, they can become very powerful, with a number of varied abilities. They are also not bound to a protectorate like other landvættir.