As the title implies, I'm on a quest to find the most effective way to cause opponents to be put to sleep. Normally, this spell falls off rather abruptly in potency, but if we use a witch with the slumber hex or a bard archetype sandman we find that they both allow for unlimited hit dice to be effected in order to induce a sleep-like effect.

Things to focus on are traits, races, feats, magic items, conditions, and class.

Many classes like fey blooded sorcerer get their perk at level(15), but this question has level 20 as the cap to work with.

The best I have come up with so far:

A kitsune bard sandman archetype at lvl 18 gets +1 racial, +2 insistent benefactor trait, +1 overwhelming beauty trait, +3 sneak spell, +2 shaken condition, +2 lullaby. This build could effect any amount of HD and is only limited by the number of rounds of bardic performance. If we assume a Charisma score of 20, the numbers stack up like this:

10+5+1+2+1+3+2+2=26 DC

Note: I added shaken/lullaby to the DC even though they are a debuff, just to help out mathematically, and in the interest of optimizing for this effect.

Is this the most effective way to put enemies to sleep, or is there one more powerful/more effective?

  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ These are two separate questions: what is the highest save DC possible for a sleep effect (of those not limited by HD), and which is the “best” class of those that can use a sleep effect (not limited by HD). The first question is fairly straightforward, but the second requires more details, and probably should go in its own question. If you do that, it would be good to specify what “best” means to you (are we talking in general, or specifically at sleep? how do you intend to use sleep, what goals do you have for the character?). But right now, 2 questions in 1 Question is too broad. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 3:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ Things that would help narrow this down: what level range are we looking at? What counts as sleep? Both the slumber hex and slumber song are different from sleep, and the latter is explicitly based off of deep slumber instead. Do you just mean the sleeping pseudocondition? Do you care more about DC height or likeliness of affecting opponents? For example, if a class got +10 to the save DC but altered the spell so it only worked on burrowing mammals, would that be good or bad? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 6:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ Please take a look at the edits I provided to make sure your intention is retained. Also, please consider doing as KRyan suggested, and breaking this down into two optimization questions. Make sure to link the two questions to each other so that they are seen as related. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 14:23
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Included in the question's sample computation is the condition shaken. By extension, are answers expected to comb through every possible option that lowers a target's saving throws to create a complete answer? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 14:23
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ As a jokingly facetious answer, the easiest way is to just wait for them to fall asleep naturally the following night ;) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 2, 2017 at 15:02

2 Answers 2


The Witch has a few good options. Her Slumber Hex can put a creature of any HD to sleep, and is based off of her hex save. Which scales with her. (DC 10+ 1/2HD + INT) She also gets a grand hex, called Eternal Slumber, which is a permanent sleep effect. Now this has the bonuses of not needing to fascinate a creature first, (Relying only on one save instead of two, and being a bit more combat viable) but has the drawback of only being able to target the same creature once.

The Dreamspun sorcerer is also worth a one level dip as well (If selecting another class. They can perform just as well as other classes and get some extra options vs sleeping opponents!), as they get an innate ability that functions like lullaby, but with a -4.

Being a sorcerer or witch will also allow you access to higher level spells. This can be useful for metamagics to heighten the spell, casting it up to 9th level to increase DC. Or add the Traumatic Spell Metamagic (Keep in mind this may need to be used with other spells, IE something that causes shaken or fear)... Making them take nightmare damage as you put them to sleep!


Negative levels reduce hit dice for effects that count hit dice.

For example: You're fighting something that has 12 hd. You cast Enervation on it and roll a 2, bestowing 2 negative levels on the creature.

Deep Slumber now works on it, because Deep Slumber now counts it as a 10 hd creature. (If it fails its save of course.)


You must log in to answer this question.

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