A Dragonator is any powered melee system that deploys massive spikes used to damage monsters. While the developer and time of development are unknown, the Guild regularly installs them in strategic locations to help in battle with large monsters. Dragonators consist of at least three pieces: the machinery, the weapon, and the control unit. Little is known about the machinery, other than the fact that it uses pressurized steam to launch the weapon. The steam is provided by a coal-fed fire. The location of the fire is unknown, presumably under or behind the weapon. The weapon itself consists of massive rod-like objects which are propelled by the steam at high velocities at the target area. The weapon can be as simple as iron spears, or as complex as spiky, spinning drills. There can be multiple rods launched from each Dragonator. The control unit is where the switch is located. It is usually located above the spikes.
While the internal machinations of Dragonators are a mystery, they are quite user-friendly and easy to operate. A large button is usually placed somewhere relatively safe, but still within view of the machine, for targeting purposes. All one needs to do is simply press the button when the time is right. (note that some buttons may require a Pick Axe to press, as with the one in the Dragonship.) There will be a short period of waiting while the steam is building. During this time, hunters may hear hissing of steam or the clanging of machinery. After the steam has built, the weapon of the spikes are propelled forward at great velocity. Anything that the spikes hit will be severely damaged. Once all of the momentum has left the system, it will be retracted back into the fixture where it came from, and begin recharging. Dragonators take a long time to build up enough steam to fire again. Because of the melee nature of the Dragonator, it is advisable to wait until the monster is very close before activating them.
Fortress - Located in area 5 on the wall of the Fortress. This one consists of 2 narrow, pointy, spinning spikes on either side of the door, making for 4 total. The controls for it are located directly above, between the other siege weapons.
Castle Schrade - Originally located in the back of the second area, with the controls directly above. This one consists of one giant spinning spike with a multiple smaller spikes around it. This one is used exclusively on the black Fatalis, and can be both tricky and dangerous to use.
As of Fourth Generation, Castle Schrade features two Dragonators that are simultaneously triggered by the controls directly above and between them. Both Dragonators are large spears capable of instantly toppling a Fatalis or a White Fatalis, with one being silver, and the other red (possibly due to rust).
Town/Battlequarters - Also known as Dundorma, the Dragonator here is located in Area 3, on the Northern face of the Southern wall. This one is made of two huge, iron spears that spring from the wall. The controls are directly above it on top of the wall. Spare parts can be seen in area 1. When Gogmazios is encountered here, it will have a Dragonator stuck to its back (mentioned by His Immenseness to be the original Dragonator which all others were derived from) This one can be broken off and then activated one time before self-destructing.
Land Arena - There is a Dragonator in the Monster Hunter 3 Land Arena. It is located on the North-East wall. The controls are situated on a small shelf just West of the weapon portion. This weapon consists of four giant, iron spears that spin when launched. However, this Dragonator is only active for online quests.
Water Arena - A Dragonator can also be found in the Monster Hunter 3 Water Arena. It is located on the North wall, and the controls are right under it, deeper underwater. The weapon consists of 2 pairs of giant spinning spears located at different heights. This Dragonator can only be activated during High Rank quests.
Great Desert - Arguably the most advanced Dragonator. This one is a single, giant, metal, spinning harpoon with barbs. Not only that, it is mounted on the front of a dragon ship. The controls are located at the front of the ship. Due to the nature of the quest, the Dragonator is moved at different times during the quest. In the first part, it is located at the front. In the second part, it is located on the left side of the dragon ship. It can be used in any of the Jhen Mohran or Dah'ren Mohran quests.
Underwater Ruin - Possibly the oldest known Dragonator. It is located in Area 3 of the Underwater Ruins. It is used against Ceadeus, its subspecies and Abyssal Lagiacrus. The weapon is two pairs of iron rods that jut out of the wall when fired. This Dragonator is best to only fire when the Ceadeus or the Goldbeard Ceadeus are enraged, as they will usually follow a set path that puts them right in front of it. The button is just above the weapon. It is currently unknown how this one operates underwater.
Tainted Sea - There are two Dragonators found here for combating the Dire Miralis. They are both roughly the same model as the ones found in the Great Desert. They are both mounted on wrecked Water Dragonships; with one being on land and the other being underwater. They have separate cooldown periods.
Slayground - The Dragonator here consists of several large spears that come out of the wall on the lower floor of the arena, with the button found directly in front of them.
Special Arena - The Dragonator consists of two large spinning harpoons with metal barbs. It is used for dealing damage to the large monsters in the Special Arena. The switch is located in between the two harpoons.
Everstream - This Dragonator is part of the barrier created to guide the dying Zorah Magdaros back into the open Ocean. The Dragonator is located in the front of a ship that is part of the left flank of the barrier.
- In Monster Hunter, a gathering quest called "Re-Supply the Dragonator" required players to collect coal in the Volcano which the client, 'Fort Guard', uses to fuel the Dragonator located at The Fortress. This quest is mainly a footnote for inquisitive players, and doesn't need to be subsequently completed to re-use the Dragonator. This is possibly due to the fact that all coal is confiscated by the Guild and therefore there would never be a shortage.
- Even though steam power is a rather modern technology in the Monster Hunter world, there is an ancient Dragonator in the Underwater Ruins. This means either steam is not as modern as previously thought, or some other mysterious power is used to operate the underwater Dragonator. There is currently no explanation.
- When using a Dragonator, a player's view is switched to a panoramic view of the Dragonator being launched forward. This cannot be skipped, except in Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, in which it can be by pressing +.
- It has been suggested that the underwater Dragonator is powered by a system of chambers that use water pressure to thrust it forward.
- In Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, the Dragonator found on the back of Gogmazios features a much more compact design than other Dragonators. It consists of a small gearbox attached to the spear. There is a button atop the gearbox for activation. It overheats and self-destructs after one use, which can be attributed to either old age or possibly the absence of a cooling system that used to be in place when it was permanently installed. The button on the gearbox may be an emergency activator in the event that the main control suite is heavily damaged.