While I was DMing a D&D 3.5 adventure, one of my players played a character with the Monkey Grip feat (because he liked the manga Berserk, where the hero has a giant sword). And it turned out that it was fun.

Now I DM for D&D 5e. I plan to play with this player again, and he might want to play a similar character.

Is there an equivalent to the Monkey Grip feat in D&D 5e?

For reference, in D&D 3.5e, the Monkey Grip feat (Complete Warrior, p. 103) allowed you to use an oversized weapon with a -2 penalty on the attack roll. For instance, a Medium character could wield a giant's greatsword as if it were a normal greatsword, or a normal greatsword as if it were a longsword.


You don't need the feat in 5E to wield oversized weapons

The DMG section on creating a monster provides rules for using oversized weapons under "Step 11. Damage" (p. 278; emphasis mine):

Big monsters typically wield oversized weapons that deal extra dice of damage on a hit. Double the weapon dice if the creature is Large, triple the weapon dice if it’s Huge, and quadruple the weapon dice if it’s Gargantuan. For example, a Huge giant wielding an appropriately sized greataxe deals 3d12 slashing damage (plus its Strength bonus), instead of the normal 1d12.

A creature has disadvantage on attack rolls with a weapon that is sized for a larger attacker. You can rule that a weapon sized for an attacker two or more sizes larger is too big for the creature to use at all.

Disadvantage is, on average, equivalent to -5 on the roll (dependent on what the total number required to hit is). You could justifiably create a homebrewed feat that improved this to a static -2 penalty instead of disadvantage, provided the DM approves (just in case you aren't the DM).

  • \$\begingroup\$ "provided the DM approves (just in case you aren't the DM)." - I mean, the question explicitly states that they are the DM... :P \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Dec 14 '19 at 3:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ The penalty on the 3.5e feat made it objectively bad for a character—and I suspect that would also be true in 5e (disadvantage on every attack would certainly be near-crippling). Rather than blithely recommending a repeat of 3.5e’s penalty, it would be vastly more helpful if this answer considered whether or not it is actually appropriate. Is the damage improvement out of line with other feats, justifying a penalty? I doubt it is. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Dec 14 '19 at 13:05
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan I wasn't suggesting the feat give disadvantage, the point I was making was that without any feat you already have disadvantage on using oversized weapons as standard. Recreating the 3.5 feat would mean removing the disadvantage (in particular for critting that increases the odds from 0.25% to 5%, and similarly it decreases the odds dramatically for nat 1s from 9.75% to 5%). Recreating the -2 bonus when you are improving your chance of critting with a doubly (or triply with a kind DM) more damaging weapon is a reasonable enough trade off. \$\endgroup\$ – illustro Dec 14 '19 at 13:31
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast true, however not all readers seeing this answer will be the DM \$\endgroup\$ – illustro Dec 14 '19 at 15:53


In D&D 5e, there is no feat equivalent of the monkey grip feat. However, you can talk to you DM about being allowed to use a homebrew feat that is the equivalent of that feat.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ I think the OP is the DM in question... \$\endgroup\$ – T. Sar Dec 13 '19 at 11:06

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.