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The other side of this question: What creature(s) can a Moon Druid transform into that would benefit from their armor? (Note: the link had Apes as the only answer, but ignore that for the sake of this current question.)

The druid's Wild Shape feature description says:

Starting at 2nd level, you can use your action to magically assume the shape of a beast that you have seen before. [...]

  • You choose whether your equipment falls to the ground in your space, merges into your new form, or is worn by it. Worn equipment functions as normal, but the GM decides whether it is practical for the new form to wear a piece of equipment. Your equipment doesn't change to match the new form, and any equipment that the new form can't wear must either fall to the ground or merge with it. Equipment that merges with the form has no effect until you leave the form.

What gear would benefit a druid both in their standard form and when they take the form of a large creature?

Several factors to consider:

  • I mean the in-game concept of Large, as in a 2x2 square creature
  • Only items in official books or modules
  • It needs to provide a benefit to both forms. A cape that provides a natural AC of 12 won't benefit much when almost all large beasts have a natural AC of 13+
  • Assume the magic item does not resize
  • The Moon druid would be about level 6-8, meaning
    • No Wondrous/Artifact items
    • Has CR 2 or less beasts available

Some things that come to mind:

  • Capes
  • Scarves
  • Wraps
  • Earrings
  • Or anything you can justify

The perfect answer I'm hoping for will be one that has the largest benefit from the magical item they refer, with justification as to how important and valid that benefit is.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Slagmoth, HellSaint, V2Blast, NathanS, Jason_c_o Aug 16 '18 at 18:23

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This appears to be a shopping list question. In particular, the last sentence screams "hey, everyone, toss me all of your ideas, and I'll pick the one I like the best". We try to avoid questions like that. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Aug 16 '18 at 15:47
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Slagmoth That was my concern, too, but also why I asked to provide your own justification. Many questions have some form of opinion, but it's the justification as to why the answer is right that makes the difference. \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Zastoupil Aug 16 '18 at 16:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Slagmoth Does "Ask the DM / GM" equate to "Primarily opinion based?" [FAQ] \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 16 '18 at 16:10
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm voting as opinion-based, but not for what Slagmoth mentioned, but because what Ben said. Not sure it's the best closing option for that though. Anyway, the problem is: I, at least, can't see a way to choose the best answer here. If person A says Item X and person B says item Y (and probably both need DM approval to begin with), what is the correct answer? An answer saying both? \$\endgroup\$ – HellSaint Aug 16 '18 at 16:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ Cont... I.e., I think it isn't simply an "Ask the DM", it's a "First get an idea, then ask the DM if you can actually do it" - and the "first get an idea" part is not good for RPG.se. \$\endgroup\$ – HellSaint Aug 16 '18 at 16:49
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It's explicitly up to the DM.

The DMG says:

When a nonhumanoid tries to wear an item, use your [the DM's] discretion as to whether the item functions as intended. A ring placed on a tentacle might work, but a yuan-ti with a snakelike tail instead of legs has no way to wear magic boots.

So that's the extent of the answer provided by the rules; a DM can certainly rule that a bear can't benefit from wearing a magical hat or necklace if they choose.

Also bear in mind that a druid using Wild Shape can't cast spells. That includes casting spells from a magic item, so even if the item is one that could be used by a beast of whatever shape you have assumed, you still can't use it to cast any spells; a necklace of prayer beads, for example, would be useless. (At 18th level, a Wild Shaped druid can cast some of their own druid spells, but they are still unable to cast any other spells, including spells cast via magic items.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ Druids can cast spells in Wild Shape, but only at 18th level (and they can only provide verbal and somatic components, not material ones). \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Aug 16 '18 at 17:50
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    \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast Thanks for reminding me of that! I've edited to include that point for the sake of completeness, even though it doesn't change the essence of my answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Marq Aug 17 '18 at 8:07

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