The PHB says that when leveling up, instead of actually rolling for hit points you can take the "average" (actually average+.5) of your HD. Now, I've always played that you then add your CON bonus either way, and I'm not the only one; it says so explicitly in How do you calculate your character's Maximum Hit Points in D&D 5th Edition? and would certainly have come up in the answers to Why would I ever choose rolling hit points? if it were otherwise.

But one of my players just pointed out that the exact wording on PHB p. 16 is:

Each time you gain a level, you gain 1 additional Hit Die. Roll that Hit Die, add your Constitution modifier to the roll, and add the total to your hit point maximum. Alternatively, use the fixed value shown in your class entry, which is the average result of the die roll (rounded up).

The fact that "Alternatively..." is in a separate sentence implies that if you don't roll, you don't get the benefit of your CON bonus, which certainly changes the equation. Where does it say explicitly that you add your CON bonus either way?

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Possible duplicate of Is Con modifier × level added to HP every level-up? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 1:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PurpleMonkey Answers to that might address this issue, but it's a different question - especially because I'm explicitly asking for a rules citation (not that I don't trust y'all with that 44-point answer.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 1:10
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ If this is destined to be closed, I think the first question I linked is closer. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 1:17

1 Answer 1


The actual class tables in question, like the one on p. 113, say variations on the following:

Hit points at Higher Levels: 1d6 (or 4) + your Constitution modifier per wizard level after 1st

This suggests you add your CON either way, and is IMO much less ambiguous than the wording in Chapter 1.

  • \$\begingroup\$ (Maybe this settles the issue, in which case I still think it's good to have for posterity, but I'm also hoping someone else has an even firmer basis for ruling this way.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 1:07

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .