The shield is made by attaching a Draconic visage to an anti-dragon shield which requires level 90 Smithing (producing 2,000 Smithing experience). It is one of the most powerful shields in the game, when fully charged. It can be charged up to 50 times by letting the dragonfire of any dragon hit the shield. The charges can either be emptied with the "Release" option, or discharged in combat as a dragonfire attack, which works in a similar way to the dragon-breath of dragons.
If a player does not have the required Smithing level to combine the visage with the shield, they can take the required items to Oziach as an alternative method of creating the shield. Using this method requires no specific Smithing level, but costs 1,250,000 coins and offers no Smithing experience.
As it absorbs the dragonfire attacks of adult dragons, the dragonfire shield builds charges. The shield can also be charged by absorbing the breath attacks of Skeletal wyverns, although it will still discharge dragonfire. Each breath attack gives the shield one charge, and each charge increases its Melee, Ranged, and Summoning defensive bonuses by +1.
The shield can hold up to 50 charges which boost it's defences, in addition to the shield's base defence bonuses.
The Inspect option, while the shield is in the inventory, can be used to check its current number of charges.
When fully charged, the dragonfire shield surpasses most shields in the game for melee and Ranged defence, although the fully charged crystal shield provides higher Ranged defence, and a blessed spirit shield provides one more point to Crush defence.
The shield can't be lent and may only be traded when uncharged.