I'm building a 5e character following the death of my previous character (who knew CON isn't a dump stat?) and would like to create a sense that they are exceptionally smart and well prepared.

In Pathfinder (and possibly previous editions of D&D) there is a feat called Brilliant Planner which allows a character to retroactively spend time and money to prepare for a situation.

Does 5th edition have any such ability? Ideally one available to a 6th level wizard with massive INT and WIS, but any non-homebrew method would be acceptable. Note that I am not specifically seeking feats - any legal means to obtain these abilities are acceptable.

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    \$\begingroup\$ (who knew CON isn't a dump stat?) - we knew... :P \$\endgroup\$ – HellSaint May 3 '18 at 1:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HellSaint well why did you keep it a secret? ;-) Not to worry, I've figured out that Cha and Str are the real dump stats. (Not really, I've just been rolling in order which sometimes produces ... challenging characters) \$\endgroup\$ – frodoskywalker May 3 '18 at 17:48

There is no direct equivalent feat in 5e to pathfinder's 'Brilliant Planner'.

So, if you want a feat that's an exact fit then homebrew is your only option.

There are, however, two very good options available that would be a good thematic (if inexact) fit, especially if they're combined.

  1. Have you considered the feat Keen Mind?

Of the currently available official feats this is the closest to what your looking for.

Keen Mind

You have a mind that can track time, direction, and detail with uncanny precision. You gain the following benefits.

  • Increase your Intelligence score by 1, to a maximum of 20.
  • You always know which way is north.
  • You always know the number of hours left before the next sunrise or sunset.
  • You can accurately recall anything you have seen or heard within the past month.

The last bullet point is close, to the kind of skill you're looking for. It means that your PC will retain any possible information they could have acquired about a situation beforehand, from whatever they've done / read in the last month. And, even if you the player has forgotten things, the DM should remind you, as your PC would not have forgotten them.

Even if you don't want to use the Keen Mind feat as is, it might be a good basis from which to build a homebrew feat.

Feats are not your only option (and may not be your best one).

You've said that you plan to play a wizard:

  1. Have you considered taking the School of Divination sub-class?

The most prominent ability of the school allows your character to 'forsee' certain dangers that will occur in the future and avert them. It seems like a really good fit thematically for the 'Brilliant Planner' feel that you want to achieve. Rather that treating it as a prophetic ability, you could re-skin it with your DM, without needing to change any of the mechanics, to be a consequence of your character's forward planning.


Starting at 2nd level when you choose this school, glimpses of the future begin to press in on your awareness. When you finish a long rest, roll two d20s and record the numbers rolled. You can replace any attack roll, saving throw, or ability check made by you or a creature that you can see with one of these foretelling rolls. You must choose to do so before the roll, and you can replace a roll in this way only once per turn Each foretelling roll can be used only once. When you finish a long rest, you lose any unused foretelling rolls.

You'll gain a third dice to use this way at 10th level.

  1. Lastly, combining Portent with the Lucky feat would make it even more powerful

And, as suggested in the comments by Jason_c_o, it would provide a lot of scope to demonstrate the benefits of your characters 'forward planning'.

If you want to go this way, acquiring two feats by level 6 is viable, with variant Human as your race.

If you choose to combine both taking the School of Divination sub-class and the Keen Mind feat (and possible even Lucky as well), it could get you very close to the effect you want to achieve, without the need for any homebrew.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for this. Portent is a good fit for "I saw this coming" given that I can choose when it happens and plan accordingly (fireball that includes my ally because I can make her pass her save, debuff at a critical moment knowing I can make the enemy fail, knowing just the right words to persuade the baron) \$\endgroup\$ – frodoskywalker May 3 '18 at 11:10

No, there is no such official feat that seems comparable, as far as I know. Any such feat in 5e would need to be homebrew.

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Rather than retroactively planning ahead, there is an Unearthed Arcana feat (which is essentially Official Homebrew from Wizards) called Wonder Maker which allows you to make a wide array of items as-needed as a Rock Gnome.

Wonder Maker

Prerequisite: Gnome (rock)

You master the tinker techniques of your people. You gain the following benefits:

  • Increase your Dexterity or Intelligence score by 1, to a maximum of 20.
  • When you make a check using your proficiency with tinker’s tools, you add double your proficiency bonus to the check.
  • When you make a device with your Tinker trait, you have the following additional options for what you make:

Alarm: This device senses when a creature moves to within 15 feet of it without speaking aloud a password chosen when you create it. One round after a creature moves into range, the alarm makes a shrill ringing that lasts for 1 minute and can be heard from up to 300 feet away.

Calculator: This device makes doing sums easy.

Lifter: This device can be used as a block and tackle, allowing its user to hoist five times the weight the user can normally lift.

Timekeeper: This pocket watch keeps accurate time.

Weather Sensor: When used as an action, this device predicts weather conditions in a 1-mile radius over the next 4 hours, showing one symbol (clouds, sun/moon, rain, or snow) for each hour.

This combines with the Tinker trait from Rock Gnomes.


You have proficiency with artisan’s tools (tinker’s tools). Using those tools, you can spend 1 hour and 10 gp worth of materials to construct a Tiny clockwork device (AC 5, 1 hp). The device ceases to function after 24 hours (unless you spend 1 hour repairing it to keep the device functioning), or when you use your action to dismantle it; at that time, you can reclaim the materials used to create it. You can have up to three such devices active at a time. When you create a device, choose one of the following options:

Clockwork Toy: This toy is a clockwork animal, monster, or person, such as a frog, mouse, bird, dragon, or soldier. When placed on the ground, the toy moves 5 feet across the ground on each of your turns in a random direction. It makes noises as appropriate to the creature it represents.

Fire Starter: The device produces a miniature flame, which you can use to light a Candle, torch, or campfire. Using the device requires your action.

Music Box: When opened, this music box plays a single song at a moderate volume. The box stops playing when it reaches the song’s end or when it is closed.

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An intelligent character should not need a feat to plan ahead. An intelligent character would research his enemy before setting out as a byproduct of being intelligent. Or at least come up with solutions to the things he would do, if he were in the enemies place.

This means what you really need it co-operation from your DM.

Work with your DM to help you use what your character knows, and your characters intelligent use of forward thinking (Which is a feature of high intelligence and wisdom) to actually go into the fight prepared, rather than do it retrospectively.

You: Hey DM, my character is super intelligent and knows he is expecting xyz, what precautions / gear should he take that I haven't thought about because I don't have INT 18 in real life?

DM: You would know that xyz uses invisibility so would prepare spells to help you see through it, or take take a sack of flour.

This relies on your DM being willing to work with you however.

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