Best DnD Character Builds 5e: 2023 Edition

When it comes to epic role-play and a vibrant cast of characters, nothing quite hits the mark like Dungeons and Dragons 5e. But with a myriad of races, classes, and magical abilities to choose from, character building can often seem more like an intimidating chore rather than an exhilarating challenge. Well, fear not dear adventurers, for we are here to guide you through the labyrinth of D&D 5e character builds, handpicking an assortment of imaginative and fun options for you.

In this blog, we dive headfirst into the realm of D&D 5e and explore a blend of classic character archetypes and exciting new hybrids. We’re here to demystify the world of DnD character builds, breaking down complex abilities into understandable notions. Whether it’s the magically versatile Sorlock, the melee master Human Polearm Fighter, or a unique blend of rogue and barbarian as the Halfling Rogue Barbarian, each character build brings something a bit different to your favorite table game.

As we delve into the charm of Half-elf Lore Bard, the resilience of the Warforged Cleric and pivots to more unusual concoctions such as the wise Gnome Monk Wizard, we trust that you’ll find a character build that not only resonates with your preferred roleplay style but also illuminates the joys of D&D 5e character creation. So, don’t just skim the surface; jump in, and let’s explore the depths of these fantastic DnD character builds together!

Now, grab your character sheet, summon your imagination, and ready for a journey through the best D&D 5e character builds, leveled for all ranges of gameplay experience. After all, in the words of the great Gary Gygax himself, “The game is afoot!” Let’s get building!

Half-elf Lore Bard

The Harmonious Enchanter

Let’s begin our character building journey with a charming and versatile classic – the Half-elf Lore Bard. Revered as the quintessential social butterfly of DnD, the Bard is a jack-of-all-trades. When combined with the innate adaptability and charisma of the Half-elf, the result is a character that thrives in the spotlight and can navigate all sorts of social situations with deft ease. Well, let’s strike up the orchestra and tune our lutes, as we introduce you to the Half-elf Lore Bard.

Character Overview

The Half-elf Lore Bard dons multiple hats – a spellcaster, an expert negotiator, a swift medic, or an insightful scholar – and wears them all with impeccable charisma. Half-elves with their versatile +2 bonus to charisma – a vital stat for Bards – and an extra +1 to two ability scores of your choice, make the perfect host for our Lore Bard. This prized combination allows you to indulge in an elaborate suite of useful cantrips, spells and bardic inspirations right from the get-go, each tailored for both in and out of combat scenarios.

Lore Bard’s magical ambience extends to gaining proficiency in three additional skills at the 3rd level, making this build a great addition to any adventuring party. Besides, their Cutting Words feature can infringe upon enemy attacks and capabilities, an ability that proves handy during tight combats.

Leveling and Skills

The beauty of the Half-elf Lore Bard lies in their ability to fine-tune their skills with each level up. At first level, you get a choice of any three skill proficiencies – we’d recommend Insight, Persuasion, and Perception to further enhance your social prowess and situational awareness. Additionally, investing in the College of Lore at the 3rd level grants proficiency in three more skills.

As for spells, consider taking a mix of supportive, controlling, and damaging spells. With spells like Cure Wounds in your arsenal, you can take on a pseudo-healer role, while Vicious Mockery allows you to disable your foes effectively and provide comic relief.

Tactics and Gameplay Style

As a Half-elf Lore Bard, your role extends beyond the battle, into the delicate canvas of social interaction, exploration, and information gathering. You are just as comfortable schmoozing at the king’s court as you are trading folk tales in a hobbit’s hovel.

During combat, capitalize on your versatile spell list, utilizing damaging spells when up against vulnerable enemies and support spells to bolster your allies. Meanwhile, your jack-of-all-trades feature means you’re never completely out of your depth, whatever the challenge. Remember, you’re an artist with a knack for turning the tide of any story — be brave, be creative, and, above all, don’t be afraid to march to the rhythm of your unique bardic beat.

Human Polearm Fighter

The Rugged Vanguard

Next on our list of exciting adventures and character builds, we present the Human Polearm Fighter. A paradigm of strength, resilience, and skill—this build emphasizes power in melee combat and takes advantage of the human’s inherent versatility and the fighter class’s mastery over weapons. So, brace yourselves, and let’s dive into the world of our hard-hitting, polearm-wielding warrior.

Character Overview

The Human Polearm Fighter might appear simple on the surface, but this class-race combination embodies raw power and adaptability. Chosen for their universally beneficial ability score bonuses, humans receive a +1 to all ability scores. That means stronger attacks, higher hit points, better saving throws, and generally improved combat effectiveness. In essence, you’re creating a character who’s good at all things combat-related.

Paired with the Fighter class, this human build gains another layer of versatility. Opting for a Variant human extends your reach in combat. Specifically, the free feat – in this case, Polearm Master – gives you additional battlefield control and damage.

Leveling and Skills

When considering your ability scores, strength and constitution should be at the top of your list. Your prowess in melee combat relies heavily on these stats, ensuring you deal hefty blows and endure enemy attacks. As you level up, focus on improving your strength for more powerful attacks and your constitution for higher hit points.

The Fighter class allows you to choose a fighting style at level one and pursue a martial archetype at level three. For your fighting style, Great Weapon Fighting boosts your damage output significantly, while Defense adds to your overall toughness. As for your martial archetype, consider Champion for its simplicity and improved critical hits or Cavalier from Xanathar’s Guide for its excellent defensive capabilities.

Tactics and Gameplay Style

The Human Polearm Fighter excels at keeping foes at a distance and doling out high damage while maintaining control of the battlefield. Your reach extends to 10 feet, combined with the Sentinel feat (recommended at level four), making foes think twice about getting too close.

The Polearm Master feat allows you to apply more pressure on enemies, offering an opportunity attack when they enter your reach, while Sentinel prevents them from moving once they’re within your grasp. The synergy between these two feats forms the cornerstone of your combat strategy: control, inhibit, and punish.

So don your favorite armor, ensure your polearm’s grip is comfortable and secure, and stride confidently into the world of D&D as a master of melee combat, a veritable wall against oncoming foes. The battlefield awaits, and your polearm thirsts for action.

Warforged Cleric

The Metallic Guardian

Next up, let’s venture the realm of divine magic and hardy resilience with the Warforged Cleric. Appearing seemingly indestructible on the battlefield, the Warforged emerge as the stalwart sentinels of the party—withstanding the most formidable enemies while providing valuable backup with healing and buffs. So, it’s time to power up your circuits, and let’s delve into the robust and versatile world of the Warforged Cleric.

Character Overview

Born from the forges of war and imbued with soul and sentience, the Warforged are a blend of organic and inorganic materials—counting both wooden fibers and metallic plates as their anatomy. This unique racial construct integrates seamlessly with the Cleric class to produce a holy warrior with awe-inspiring resilience and a pool of restorative and protecting magics.

In terms of ability scores, the Warforged receives +2 to Constitution and an additional +1 to a chosen ability score. Placing that +1 into Wisdom considerably ramps up the Cleric’s spellcasting capabilities. Additionally, the Warforged’s construct nature provides them with +1 AC, further enhanced by the class’s proficiency in heavy armour and shields.

Leveling and Skills

As you start your journey as a Warforged Cleric, your chief focus should be on extending your Wisdom for a more substantial spellcasting capacity and your Constitution for increased survival ability. The Forge Domain is a highly recommended Cleric subclass for Warforged. It synergizes beautifully with their nature and gives them thebility to create magical armor, hence fortifying their defenses.

Clerics can learn a broad array of spells, and each time you complete a long rest, you can switch these out. Select a combination of healing spells—such as Cure Wounds—and buffing spells—like Bless—to provide the best aid to your teammates. Moreover, Forge Domain Clerics have unique access to some excellent spells, with Magic Weapon being a standout for its increase to offense.

Tactics and Gameplay Style

As a Warforged Cleric, it’s your job to be the unyielding bulwark of your party—able to absorb significant damage, while also providing meaningful support to your teammates. Its essential to position yourself smartly in fights, keeping a balanced distance between all members. This way, you are always ready to step into the frontline when needed or hang back and heal when the situation demands it.

Offensively, spells like Guiding Bolt provide hefty damage along with combat utility. On the defensive end, spells like Shield of Faith can offer vital AC boosts. The Warforged Cleric is not here just to administer bandages and cast protective wards; it’s a build that truly embodies the saying, “The best defense is a strong offense.” So, whether you’re charging fearlessly into the thickest battle or fiercely protecting your allies, remember, you’re the prime force that keeps your party going – unyielding, unrelenting, unfaltering.

Halfling Rogue Barbarian

The Agile Brute

Next on our roster is a character build that is as unorthodox as it is intriguing – the Halfling Rogue Barbarian. Here’s a small package packing some vicious surprise; a character that combines the Halfling’s inherent agility and luck with the brute force and exciting rage abilities of the Barbarian class, and finally tops it off with the finesse skills of a Rogue. Intrigued? Let’s dive into the world of the Agile Brute!

Character Overview

The Halfling Rogue Barbarian is a character full of wild contrasts, meshing the stealthy finesse of the Rogue with the sheer brute strength of the Barbarian. Your character might be small in stature, but rest assured, they’ll command a mighty presence on the battlefield. The Halflings’ natural Dexterity and Constitution bonuses align well with the Rogue’s stealth and evasion abilities, while also bolstering the Barbarian’s endurance and resilience.

This intriguing blend allows a nimble character that can stealthily approach targets and then unleash a flurry of devastating attacks. Not to mention, Halflings’ ‘Lucky’ racial trait can turn potential blunders, particularly when you go rogue, into unexpected successes. It’s an “unlikely” combo, sure, but can prove to be quite the wildcard in your party!

Leveling and Skills

Due to the multi-class nature, you’ll want to carefully plan your leveling pathway. Initially leaning into the Rogue class could provide some beneficial proficiencies and sneak attack bonuses. Then, as you level up, gradually invest in the Barbarian side to harness the power of rage and enhance your survival skills.

For skills, emphasize Dexterity-based ones due to your Rogue and Halfling lineage. Skills like Stealth, Acrobatics, and Perception could make you agile and aware, while Sleight of Hand and Thieves’ Tools proficiency can perfect your rogueish talents. When it comes to feats, ‘Mobile’ and ‘Savage Attacker’ are top choices to enhance speed and attack potential respectively.

Tactics and Gameplay Style

As an Agile Brute, your gameplay involves mastering the art of surprise and fierce combat. Lay low until you find an opportune moment to strike, and then unleash your rage to deal heavy damage. At times when rage seems like overkill, your Rogue abilities let you disable or distract enemies or swiftly maneuver through the battlefield.

Your unique class combination also offers versatility outside combat. Your rogue skills could shine through delicate tasks or disarming traps, while your overall likeability could help smooth over tense situations.

Remember, as a Halfling Rogue Barbarian, it’s all about harnessing the element of surprise. Play up your harmless appearance, and let your agile brute nature catch your foes completely off guard when they least expect it.

Gnome Monk Wizard

The Wise Fist

If you’re inclined towards the mystical and unconventional, then this hybrid blend might be right up your alley. Marrying the raw martial prowess of the Monk with the arcane expertise of the Wizard, and layered with the relentless curiosity of the Gnome results in a fascinating character that’s ready for anything – The Gnome Monk Wizard or, as we lovingly call it, The Wise Fist.

Character Overview

Much like a Shaolin Warrior Monk, the Gnome Monk Wizard is a disciplined warrior who intertwines martial arts and magic in astoundingly impactful ways. Gnomes with their inherent +2 intelligence boost make a splendid platform for the Wizard class. Combining the wisdom-driven Monk class highlights their kinetic physical acuity and vast mental world.

Have a Gnome Monk that follows the Way of the Four Elements, and a Wizard with an Arcane Tradition in Evocation or Abjuration. This way, you’ve a character balancing both the arcane and the primal – an enlightened soul speaking both, the language of the world and the elements.

Leveling and Skills

Leveling up a character of such dynamism might seem tricky, but it allows you to customize your character in ways your heart desires. Alternate between Wizard and Monk levels to maintain a balance between your spellcasting and martial abilities. You can start with the Monk class for its initial proficiencies and hit points.

As for skills, capitalizing on Dexterity and Intelligence helps in spellcasting, evasive maneuvers, and unarmed strikes. Key Monk skills include Acrobatics and Stealth, while Arcana and Investigation serve your Wizard side. Spells can range from Elemental to Utility magic, focusing particularly on spells that complement your martial prowess.

Tactics and Gameplay Style

Tactically, the Gnome Monk Wizard is versatile and unpredictable. While you aren’t the burly warrior charging head-on into the battle, or the secluded spellcaster raining havoc from the backlines, you’re the blur of movement dodging assaults, and retaliating with a mix of potent spells, sharp jabs, and kicks.

You incapacitate your enemies by combining stunning strikes with swift wizardry, creating unique combo attacks. For instance, stunning your foes with the Monk’s Stunning Strike and then exploiting their vulnerability with the Wizard’s Magic Missile spell. Also, your Gnome Cunning gives you an edge against magical effects, fortifying your defense against potent magic-using enemies.

In social and exploration scenarios, your versatility shines. Whether it’s deciphering ancient runes, or silently infiltrating a bandit’s hideout, The Wise Fist takes it all in stride. It’s an unusual blend, no doubt, but the Gnome Monk Wizard is a vivid testament to the endless creative possibilities of D&D 5e where everything doesn’t have to be conventional to be effective.

DND 5e Character Builds

And there you have it, adventurers – our comprehensive dive into some of the best D&D 5e character builds. From the charming Half-elf Lore Bard to the resilient Warforged Cleric, and the unique blend of the Halfling Rogue Barbarian, there’s a build for every player. We’ve covered the basics, including the leveling, skills, and gameplay style for each character. But remember – the beauty of Dungeons and Dragons lies in its capacity for creativity, so these builds are merely starting points. Feel free to add your own flair, develop your character’s backstory, and truly immerse yourself in your role-play.

So now, armed with newfound knowledge, roll your dice and embrace the endless possibilities that come with each game of DnD. Every character sheet provides an opportunity to create something truly unique and unforgettable, just like your upcoming adventures. Until next time, happy exploring, cunning negotiating, and daring adventuring in the splendid realms of D&D 5e!

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