So I have a party consisting of the following characters

Variant Human Battlemaster Fighter (Urchin Background) (Archery Fighting style)

Variant Human Abjuration Wizard (Sage Background)

Half Elf Oath of Vengeance Paladin (Courtier Background)

Hill Dwarf Grave Cleric (Folk Hero Background)

Half Orc Bear Totem Warrior Barbarian (Outlander background)

Is this a balanced party, or is it missing something essential? (Note that the fighter has high dex, proficiency in stealth, and proficiency in thieves' tools from his background so he can fill the role of a "rogue")

  • \$\begingroup\$ I think this question may be too general. There really isn't an exact answer to this question - it certainly could be a balanced party, but it really depends on a lot more than just what class everyone is playing. For example, what spells the Wizard and Cleric pick, what everyone is proficient in, and what they do during combat. Not to mention, "balance" is a rather subjective concept, and there's no strict "DPS/tank/heal" role in D&D. A party of 3 bards can do just fine. \$\endgroup\$ – mjsch Mar 6 '19 at 21:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ This question is probably answerable with Good Subjective: the OP only needs broad advice, and experienced players can provide valid input about features or roles the OP's party might potentially be missing without needing to know every last detail about the OP's campaign. That having been said, @TylerDunn, some additional information about the campaign you're planning to be a part of would definitely help improve the quality of answers this question receives. \$\endgroup\$ – Xirema Mar 6 '19 at 21:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Mar 7 '19 at 0:56

Your party is fine; realistically, the only thing you're missing is a "Stat Stick" character like a Rogue or Bard.

You mention the Fighter having some of the "stealthy" capabilities typically associated with a Rogue, but in 5th Edition D&D, the commonly sought-after ability check features of a Rogue (or Bard) is their Expertise feature, allowing them to add double their proficiency bonus to whichever skills they gain expertise in. This affords them very high modifiers in these stats, to the point that they typically blow way past the DCs for checks using their chosen skills; along with some of their other features (Rogues at level 11 can only roll as low as a Natural 10 in any skill they are proficient in; Bards can add half their proficiency bonus to any check that doesn't have proficiency), this makes them highly desirable for campaigns which rely heavily on Ability Checks.

Beyond that use, though, your party is balanced. You've struck a pretty diverse set of Ability Score specialties (Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma are all accounted for), and you've got a healthy blend of Spellcasters and Martial classes, along with at least two classes (Cleric and Paladin) that can be configured to provide strong Healing if needed. And since the Cleric, Paladin, and Wizard can all put out some powerful buff spells, it's unlikely you'll suffer from the lack of a Rogue or Bard for their Ability Check features.


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