I've read the entry on How far can you see? and found it useful for my D&D 5e campaign but I'd like some more details as to how this applies to various races, particularly Elves and Half-Elves in normal daylight. Does anyone know of a useful chart anywhere?
And I do mean normal light. There is a lot of talk about dark vision but I'm after normal sight. For example in a group comprised of a variety of races who would best be sent up to a crows nest on a ship to scout the surroundings?
Elves, at least in fiction, have incredible eyesight as shown by Legolas in the Lord of the Rings.

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    \$\begingroup\$ What do you find lacking in the other question? To me if races had explicit differences the answers there would have addressed them. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 13, 2019 at 3:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ The other question's answers doesn't specify the differences in vision for the different races: it just provides the base answer from the Dungeon Master's Guide. \$\endgroup\$
    – tgrignon
    Aug 13, 2019 at 3:25
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    – V2Blast
    Aug 13, 2019 at 6:01

1 Answer 1


All creatures see the same distance in daylight

As noted in xanderh's answer to the linked question:

The 5e player's handbook does not have rules on visibility, but the DMG does. They can be found on page 243, under the "Visibility Outdoors" heading.

The basic summary of it is that, on a clear day, you can see 2 miles, or until your view is obscured by terrain features. If it's raining, it usually cuts it down to 1 mile. Fog cuts it down to 100 to 300 feet. And standing on a mountain or similarly elevated place will give you a visibility of 40 miles. For comparison, the horizon on earth is 2.9 miles away at ground level.

Dim light isn't mentioned as diminishing your visibility (beyond giving disadvantage on Perception checks), so dim versus bright light doesn't change anything.

There's no difference between races in terms of how far they can see normally. If there was any mechanical difference in this regard, it would be explicitly mentioned in a racial trait, or in other player-facing rules. Without such an explicit mention, there is no difference between races in terms of vision in daylight. (Note that some races, such as elves, may grant proficiency in the Perception skill, but this has no direct correlation with the actual distance they can see.)

A DM could always house-rule otherwise if they found it more fun. And characters can always have their own assumptions about, for instance, elves' eyesight being better, whether or not this is mechanically true.


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