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How many characters are needed (using any 5e published race, background and class [no feats]) so that a party can understand (read and converse) all languages in PHB, GGtR and WgtE; at level 1 without the need for spells ?

How diverse can you make the party without increasing the number of characters ?

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    \$\begingroup\$ "all published languages" is too broad and will lead to answers that become stale as more content is released. If you restrict it to PHB, DMG, Volo's and Xanathar's for example it will be a better question. \$\endgroup\$ – linksassin Mar 12 at 4:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @linksassin good point, I will make that edit \$\endgroup\$ – Karan Shishoo Mar 12 at 4:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ As an example of the broadness of all languages. \$\endgroup\$ – Purple Monkey Mar 12 at 5:00
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    \$\begingroup\$ You may want to take a look at this list and make it a bit clearer which categories of languages you want to have access to. Especially whether you want to have the last category in that list. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Mar 12 at 5:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ related: How to get the most languages with the fewest level investments?, How many languages is it possible to learn?. Answers to one of these questions should be able to answer your question, at least partly; you may have to piece it together from multiple answers. Feel encouraged to answer this question yourself if you do discover the answer, to aid future readers. \$\endgroup\$ – PixelMaster Mar 12 at 12:23
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By my estimation, a 5-character party is needed:

High Elf / Druid / Sage: Common, Elvish, Druidic, +3 of player's choice

Vedalken / Knowledge Cleric / Acolyte: Common, Vedalken, +5 of player's choice(!)

Goblin / Rogue / Orzhov Representative: Common, Goblin, Thieves' Cant, +2 of player's choice

Tiefling / Storm Sorcerer / Simic Scientist: Common, Infernal, Primordial, +2 of player's choice

Deep Gnome / Ranger / Azorius Functionary: Common, Gnomish, Undercommon, +3 of player's choice


This uses races, classes and backgrounds that I collated from the Player's Handbook, Guildmaster's Guide to Ravnica, Volo's Guide to Monsters, Xanathar's Guide to Everything, and the Elemental Evil Player's Companion. This gives the party a total of 25 languages understood fully (reading, writing and speaking), including Thieves' Cant and Druidic, which covers (assuming no players take duplicate chosen languages) all 25 languages found in those books.

*EEPC adds the Aarakocra language and the Deep Gnome subrace.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ My count is 26 of you include Thieves Cant (which mind you, isn't a language but a cipher). And that's without including EEPC \$\endgroup\$ – David Coffron Mar 12 at 12:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ Okay, which one did I miss? puu.sh/CYQuS/0deecc8808.png \$\endgroup\$ – fluff_thorrent Mar 12 at 12:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Rierdan and Quori from Eberron, but now I see you didn't include them \$\endgroup\$ – David Coffron Mar 12 at 13:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah, okay. I started with "PHB, GGtR and WgtE" (VGtM and XGtE?) as per the OP. That said, without the EEPC, one could just use any other Gnome, as Aarakocra isn't included in the others. \$\endgroup\$ – fluff_thorrent Mar 12 at 13:06
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You need 4 characters with a magic item, 5 without.

The Party

  • High Elf Druid (6 new languages)
    • Common, Elvish, Druidic, 1 from Extra Language, 2 from background1
  • Vedalken Cleric of the Knowledge Domain (6 new languages)
    • Common, Vedalken, 1 from Languages, 2 from background, 2 from Blessings of Knowledge
  • Kalashtar Cleric of the Knowledge Domain (6 new languages)
    • Common, Quori, 1 from Languages, 2 from background, 2 from Blessings of Knowledge
  • Changeling Cleric of the Knowledge Domain (6 new languages)
    • Common, 2 from Languages, 2 from background, 2 from Blessings of Knowledge

These give the party 24 languages, which falls one short of all the languages from the sources you mention.

You could gain this language via an Ioun Stone of Language Knowledge from this adventure:

Lost Laboratory of Kwalish

You could also make one of the clerics a different class by collecting two additional of these magic items.

Without Magic Items

Otherwise, any 5th character who can learn a language not chosen by the ones I listed can fill out the party, making 5 characters.

If you want a more well-rounded party without magic items, since you need a 5th character anyway, if your 5th character is a Changeling Ranger, you can change the classes of two of the Knowledge Domain clerics to anything you like and still have enough

1: Use the Customizing a Background rule in the PHB and any background can get 2 languages

The Languages

There are 25 languages within the three books you requested (Player's Handbook, Guildmaster's Guide to Ravnica, and Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron):

  1. Abyssal
  2. Celestial
  3. Common
  4. Deep Speech
  5. Draconic
  6. Druidic
  7. Dwarvish
  8. Elvish
  9. Giant
  10. Gnomish
  11. Goblin
  12. Halfling
  13. Infernal
  14. Kraul
  15. Loxodon
  16. Merfolk
  17. Minotaur
  18. Orc
  19. Primordial
  20. Quori
  21. Rierdan
  22. Sphinx
  23. Sylvan
  24. Undercommon
  25. Vedalken
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