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I'm thinking of playing a Dhampir player character (details in Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft). I want to build around the Vampiric Bite feature, listed below:

Vampiric Bite

Your fanged bite is a natural weapon, which counts as a simple melee weapon with which you are proficient. You add your Constitution modifier, instead of your Strength modifier, to the attack and damage rolls when you attack with this bite. It deals 1d4 piercing damage on a hit. While you are missing half or more of your hit points, you have advantage on attack rolls you make with this bite.

I figured that I could utilize this by building around Constitution and using that for my bite. There is a problem, however: Many creatures are resistant to or immune to nonmagical piercing damage. Is there a way to make a dhampir's Vampiric Bite permanently magical? I have a strong desire to make my PC's face permanently capable of dealing magical damage in order to maintain the viability of Vampiric Bite at higher levels.

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Become a Way of the Kensei Monk (though your bite is not an unarmed strike)

The Dhampir's bite counts as a simple melee weapon. As such, effects that can make a simple melee weapon magical will apply to the bite.

Now, you might have thought that the bite is an "unarmed strike," and it would be reasonable to think so (it certainly is made when you aren't wielding any weapons in your hands). But as PixelMaster rightly pointed out in a comment, as a natural weapon this bite is not considered an unarmed strike). So what we need to improve this bite will be something that improves "simple melee weapons," without other restrictions.

While there are many effects that temporarily enchant weapons or natural weapons, effects that permanently enhance either are rare. And some (like artificer infusions) come with extra caveats, like requirements that the weapons being enhanced are "objects" (see TCoE p. 12, section "Infusing an Item"). Others, like the Warlock's Pact Weapon, require you to be able to summon the weapon "into your hand," or require you to "wield" the weapon (which implies the use of a hand) to gain extra benefits. However, there is a class which can grant permanent magical status to certain weapons, without the requirement that the weapons be wielded in a hand or be objects before their enchantment: the Way of the Kensei monk.

Your bite is a "monk weapon"

The PHB (p. 78, bold added) defines monk weapons as:

shortswords and any simple melee weapons that don't have the two-handed or heavy property.

Since your Dhampir's bite "counts as a simple melee weapon with which you are proficient," it will also qualify a monk weapon. As such, you will be able to use class features that apply to monk weapons on them. A useful class to consider for this would be the Way of the Kensei monk (found in Xanathar's Guide to Everything), which can use certain monk weapons in useful ways. Specifically, it can select the following at 3rd level:

Kensei Weapons. Choose two types of weapons to be your kensei weapons: one melee weapon and one ranged weapon. Each of these weapons can be any simple or martial weapon that lacks the heavy and special properties.

As the monk progresses, they will gain ways to improve their kensei weapons. The most relevant of which is found at 6th level:

Magic Kensei Weapons. Your attacks with your kensei weapons count as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage.

There are many other useful ways this class could empower the bites as well, such as using ki to add to their attack rolls and damage at 11th level. While some rare Kensei abilities require the weapon to be "in your hand" (e.g. Agile Parry), and thus wouldn't apply, you do get more than one of these kensei weapons, so could likely still make full use of your class features.

As such, this class would enable you to improve and empower your bite attacks throughout your character's progression. And as requested, it would (beyond 6th level) make your bite attacks permanently magical.

A warning about being MAD (Multiple Ability Dependent)

The synergies possible with this class are quite valuable. You could be able to enhance your bite far beyond its starting potency, potentially attacking two times with it each round (and using unarmed strikes [which your bite, again, is not] through Flurry of Blows to do more damage as well: and thanks to the monk's 6th level "Ki Empowered Strikes" ability, these unarmed strikes will also be magical). Your bite will also deal 1d10+Con damage with each successful bite at higher levels (i.e. 17th and up), and will qualify for other features of a monk that enhance melee weapon attacks (like the 5th level Stunning Strike). However, there are some downsides.

Your bite's description says "You add your Constitution modifier, instead of your Strength modifier, to the attack and damage rolls." It does not state that you "can" add Constitution, but rather implies that you must. So in order to get all the benefits of this bite (e.g., advantage on attack rolls when you are below half hit points), you likely will need to rely on your Constitution to attack.

But note that you'll need to be unarmored and wielding no shield to gain many benefits of this class (e.g. the martial arts die). This would mean you'd be relying on two abilities for defense (Dexterity and Wisdom for your Unarmored Defense), and another one for some attacks (Constitution, and presumably Dexterity for unarmed strikes). Though possible, it could be hard to keep your character optimized at certain levels with these requirements. Since monks only get 5 ASIs throughout their careers, you likely will only be able to get two of these three abilities to 20, which means you'll be slightly lacking in offensive or defensive capabilities compared to other monks.

Still, if what you're invested in is making your bite more effective, this class could be very helpful. And the extra constitution will help you defensively as well, perhaps allowing you to balance out a slightly lower AC. All in all, the synergy is viable, and certainly will give you what you most wanted: a permanently magical bite attack.

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There isn't an enchantment mechanic for conventional weapons, much less your face, but there are a couple things that get us where we want to be.

The Insignia of Claws

There is a magic item published in the Hoard of the Dragon Queen adventure called the Insignia of Claws:

While wearing the insignia, you gain a +1 bonus to the attack rolls and the damage rolls you make with unarmed strikes and natural weapons. Such attacks are considered to be magical.

This is the best option. It doesn't even require attunement. Talk to your DM about working one of these into your adventure.

The magic weapon spell will work.

The spell magic weapon states:

You touch a nonmagical weapon. Until the spell ends, that weapon becomes a magic weapon with a +1 bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls.

Since your bite is a simple melee weapon, it is an eligible target for magic weapon. See this Q&A for a more detailed analysis of this use of the spell: Can the Magic Weapon spell be cast on a natural weapon?

Single use: Oil of Sharpness

As an honorable mention, I want to present a single use item that technically works, the Oil of Sharpness:

This clear, gelatinous oil sparkles with tiny, ultrathin silver shards. The oil can coat one slashing or piercing weapon or up to 5 pieces of slashing or piercing ammunition. Applying the oil takes 1 minute. For 1 hour, the coated item is magical and has a +3 bonus to attack and damage rolls.

Spend a minute coating your teeth with this stuff and you are in business. Just don't bite your tongue.


As an end note, I will mention that my first thought was that a monk may be able to do this, as a monk's unarmed strikes become magical at 6th level, or in the words of Beauregard Lionett, "I think I can punch ghosts now." However, natural weapons do not count as unarmed strikes unless a feature explicitly designates them so, see this Q&A for more details: Can natural weapons be used for unarmed strikes?. However, Galdalfmeansme's answer outlines a different way one particular monk subclass could get the job done, which is a viable option if you want to play a monk, but has the notable limitation you have to be a monk.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This is a superior answer compared to the monk one \$\endgroup\$
    – justhalf
    Sep 19, 2023 at 16:17
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I actually went over this a while back when considering a Dhampir. There is a convoluted way to permanently enhance your bite.

If you have a sorcerer cast an extended magic weapon on your teeth (needs to last over an hour, possibly would work with a second caster overlapping magic weapon on the teeth). Then it will qualify to be turned into your pact weapon with Pact of the Blade.

You can transform one magic weapon into your pact weapon by performing a special ritual while you hold the weapon. You perform the ritual over the course of 1 hour, which can be done during a short rest.

Since the ritual takes 1 hour, you likely need the weapon (face) to be magical for longer than 1 hour.

Then with Improved Pact Weapon, when the magic spell wears off, it should qualify for the +1 bonus, and per Pact of the Blade

counts as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage.

There is a caveat in the fact that there is not clear guidance in the rules for what happens when something no longer is a valid target for when an effect was first cast. Because your teeth are no longer valid for pact weapon when magic weapon expires. So probably ask the DM before planning a character around it.

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    \$\begingroup\$ A small caveat: the text about a weapon counting as magical says "You can use your action to create a pact weapon in your empty hand... This weapon counts as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage." It does not say that any pact weapon is automatically magical: just that the one you summoned into your hand is (and it's debatable whether or not you can summon your mouth into your hand). Naturally, the magical weapon you make into a pact weapon is usually magical as well, but that's not a given under the rules as written. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 8, 2021 at 20:21
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    \$\begingroup\$ Surprisingly, even the invocation Improved Pact Weapon may not help here, because although it does give a permanent +1 to attack and damage rolls to that weapon, it does not explicitly state that it makes that weapon magical! A DM may relent, though, and declare that since Invocations are themselves magical, weapons attacks boosted by them are as well. But this is not assured. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 8, 2021 at 20:23
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    \$\begingroup\$ To be clear: you could definitely make your pact weapon magical again by summoning it after dismissing it (since the one you summoned is magical as per your quoted text). But again, it's debatable whether your teeth can be summoned "in your empty hand." And worse yet: having "dismiss[ed] the weapon, shunting it into an extradimensional space," it's debatable whether or not you could then reattach them in your face! \$\endgroup\$ Dec 8, 2021 at 20:27
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    \$\begingroup\$ (As an example of why a DM might not consider the Improved Pact Weapon invocation to make a weapon magical, consider that an attack made by a character under the effect of the Bless spell may not be considered a magical attack. Just because magic enhances something doesn't mean that thing is definitely magical.) \$\endgroup\$ Dec 8, 2021 at 20:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ No worries. I certainly could have missed an interaction. The primary difficulty is the fact so many normal avenues require "A non-magical object" if your dhampir got dentures it would be much easier. :/ \$\endgroup\$
    – Daveman
    Dec 8, 2021 at 22:44
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Many classes have means of turning Vampiric Bite magical...


But not all of them are built the same.

I've been dealing with methods to turn Vampiric Bite into a magical attack since Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft first released, and since then there have been many ways for classes to turn this into a magical bite (spellcasters in particular). Firstly, let's go over what Vampiric Bite actually does so we know the rules going forward:


Your fanged bite is a natural weapon, which counts as a simple melee weapon with which you are proficient. You add your Constitution modifier, instead of your Strength modifier, to the attack and damage rolls when you attack with this bite. It deals 1d4 piercing damage on a hit. While you are missing half or more of your hit points, you have advantage on attack rolls you make with this bite.
When you attack with this bite and hit a creature that isn’t a Construct or an Undead, you can empower yourself in one of the following ways of your choice:

  • You regain hit points equal to the piercing damage dealt by the bite.
  • You gain a bonus to the next ability check or attack roll you make; the bonus equals the piercing damage dealt by the bite. [...]

Now, from RAW, what we know about the Vampiric Bite is this:

  • It is considered a simple melee weapon you are proficient with, not an unarmed strike.
  • You gain advantage when your hit points are below half when making this attack.
  • It uses the character's Constitution modifier, requiring you to deep dip into Constitution to use it effectively.
  • It cannot empower the player when used to attack Constructs or Undead, meaning your only real reason for using it is nonexistent on these two creature types.
  • Both of its empowerments only account the piercing damage dealt by the bite. This means that added damage types will not benefit the empowerment.

Regardless of these facts, there are still options to turn these weapons magical.
The ways I've found thus far are listed below:


Magic Weapon (2nd level) | [Artificer, Paladin, Ranger, Sorcerer, Wizard]

You touch a nonmagical weapon. Until the spell ends, that weapon becomes a magic weapon with a +1 bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls.

This is more effective if you're a Barbarian with a spellcaster ally who doesn't have any notable Concentration Spells at the moment (don't expect this to happen often). But because all it does is turn your weapon magical, it isn't the best it could be.

It's also not even the best option for Artificer, but the best for Ranger.


Enhanced Weapon (Artificer Infusion) | [Artificer only]

Item: A simple or martial weapon
This magic weapon grants a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with it.
The bonus increases to +2 when you reach 10th level in this class.

This is the outright best option for an Artificer in terms of making your fangs magical. It is permanent, it does not add additional damage types, and it gives a +1 (and later +2) bonus to your attack and damage rolls.

However, it still requires you to invest into Constitution for it to remain useful. An issue with almost every method on this list.


Radiant Weapon (Artificer Infusion) | [Artificer Only]

Prerequisite: 6th-level artificer
Item: A simple or martial weapon (requires attunement)

This magic weapon grants a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with it.
[...]
The weapon has 4 charges. As a reaction immediately after being hit by an attack, the wielder can expend 1 charge and cause the attacker to be blinded until the end of the attacker's next turn, unless the attacker succeeds on a Constitution saving throw against your spell save DC.[...]

This is a secondary option to Enhanced Weapon for Artificers, though by no means better. The Infusion also allows your fangs to shed bright light for 30 ft. and dim light for a further 30 ft., but you already have Darkvision out to 60 ft., which makes this redundant.

The only reason I would choose this as my Infusion over Enhanced Weapon is because of the reaction to blind opponents that hit me, and that is a very niche case in most circumstances.


Elemental Weapon (3rd Level) | [Artificer, Druid, Paladin, Ranger]

A nonmagical weapon you touch becomes a magic weapon. Choose one of the following damage types: acid, cold, fire, lightning, or thunder. For the duration, the weapon has a +1 bonus to attack rolls and deals an extra 1d4 damage of the chosen type when it hits.

This is actually just as bad as Magic Weapon, because while you're getting extra elemental damage for the duration, your bite cannot benefit from that because it specifically requires piercing damage for all of its empowerments.

But it's also your best (and only) option for Druids when it comes to spells.


Holy Weapon (5th Level) | [Cleric, Paladin]

You imbue a weapon you touch with holy power. Until the spell ends, the weapon [...] deal[s] an extra 2d8 radiant damage on a hit. If the weapon isn’t already a magic weapon, it becomes one for the duration. [...]

Again, it's okay if you just want to make your Vampiric Bite magical, but the radiant damage does not benefit your Vampiric Bite's empowerment in any way. And considering Radiant damage is frequently used against Undead, you have even less reason to use Holy Weapon on your fangs, because you don't want to be biting Undead.

Unfortunately, it's your best option for a Cleric or Paladin.


Way of the Kensei (Subclass) | [Monk Only]

Bear with me. This is going to be a loaded discussion, but a very interesting one. There's a reason I've added this, even though it isn't from a Spellcasting Class.

3rd level: Path of the Kensei

When you choose this tradition at 3rd level, [...] you gain the following benefits:

  • Kensei Weapons. Choose two types of weapons to be your kensei weapons: one melee weapon and one ranged weapon. Each of these weapons can be any simple or martial weapon that lacks the heavy and special properties. [...] Weapons of the chosen types are monk weapons for you. [...]
  • Agile Parry. If you make an unarmed strike as part of the Attack action on your turn and are holding a kensei weapon, you can use it to defend yourself if it is a melee weapon. You gain a +2 bonus to AC until the start of your next turn, while the weapon is in your hand and you aren’t incapacitated.

Kensei Weapons allows you to treat your fangs as a Monk weapon, which will increase their damage die; from a 1d4, to a 1d10 maximum at 17th level. This is the only way I've found thus far that allows you to increase your fangs' damage die. It also could change your fangs' scaling from Constitution to Dexterity, preventing you from being MAD.

Agile Parry is an interesting feature as well, though it's hard to know how it would work with your fangs. RAW, most DMs wouldn't allow you to use it because you are not holding them in your hand. However, rule of cool would allow you to catch an opponent's weapon beneath your teeth. Which I'd hope some DMs would find cool enough to handwave the RAW mechanics.

6th level: One with the Blade

At 6th level, you extend your ki into your kensei weapons, granting you the following benefits.

  • Magic Kensei Weapons. Your attacks with your kensei weapons count as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage.
  • Deft Strike. When you hit a target with a kensei weapon, you can spend 1 ki point to cause the weapon to deal extra damage to the target equal to your Martial Arts die. [...]

Magic Kensei Weapons is when your fangs permanently turn magical. By this point, your fangs' damage die would have elevated to a d6 as well, which puts it above all other variations of magic fangs in terms of base damage.

Deft Strike increases this even further, turning your fangs' 1d6 into a 2d6, allowing you to deal up to a maximum of 17 magical piercing damage in a single attack.

11th level: Sharpen the Blade

At 11th level, you gain the ability to augment your weapons further with your ki. As a bonus action, you can expend up to 3 ki points to grant one kensei weapon you touch a bonus to attack and damage rolls when you attack with it. The bonus equals the number of ki points you spent. This bonus lasts for 1 minute or until you use this feature again. [...]

Sharpen the Blade arrives right when most players would be getting +2-3 magic weapons. At this level, your magic fangs now do 1d8 piercing damage. With Sharpen the Blade and Deft Strike, this becomes a maximum of 2d8+8, or 24 piercing damage in a single attack. Adding in Monk's optional Ki-Fueled Attack and Extra Attack, you can deal 4d8+24 piercing damage in a single turn, up to a maximum of 56 damage.

And while I didn't include it in the original overview of Vampiric Bite, its empowerment can be used up to your proficiency bonus before having to long rest. By spending 3 uses of your Vampiric Bite, you could heal yourself by 56 HP in a single round.

This is the time I mention that an 11th level Monk's hit point average, without accounting for Constitution, is 58. You are healing almost all of your HP in a single round.

17th level: Unerring Accuracy

At 17th level, your mastery of weapons grants you extraordinary accuracy. If you miss with an attack roll using a monk weapon on your turn, you can reroll it. You can use this feature only once on each of your turns.

Move over Divination Wizards, the Kensei Monk Dhampir is the dumbest way of ensuring damage. We haven't spoken much about one aspect of the Vampiric Bite: how you gain advantage on it when you are below half of your hit points. But now, with Unerring Accuracy, you can gain that even if you aren't once per turn. And, because RAW, Unerring Accuracy is not described as Advantage: If you miss an advantage-boosted attack from your Vampiric Bite, you can reroll it with that advantage still. Rolling 4d20 for accuracy sounds fun.

Add in Focused Aim, and you can also add up to +6 to these accuracy rolls.

Now, time for what you've been waiting for: calculating the maximum damage a Kensei Monk Dhampir can do in a single round (without factoring in magic items).

2d10+8 + 1d10+8 + 1d10+8 = 56 damage on average, or a maximum of 72 damage.

On average, a Monk with 10 in con will have 88 HP. Enjoy.


Battle Smith (Subclass) | [Artificer Only]

This one won't be nearly as long, but will go over how to turn your bite into a multi-target heal.

3rd level: Battle Ready

When you reach 3rd level, your combat training and your experiments with magic have paid off[...]:

  • When you attack with a magic weapon, you can use your Intelligence modifier, instead of Strength or Dexterity modifier, for the attack and damage rolls.

Like our last discussion, Battle Ready should allow you to avoid going MAD by having to deep dip into Constitution. So long as your fangs are infused with Enhanced Weapon (or Radiant Weapon), you should be able to use your Intelligence over your Constitution.

9th level: Arcane Jolt

At 9th level, you've learn new ways to channel arcane energy to harm or heal. When [...] you hit a target with a magic weapon attack [...], you can channel magical energy through the strike to create one of the following effects [...]:

  • Choose one creature or object you can see within 30 feet of the target. Healing energy flows into the chosen recipient, restoring 2d6 hit points to it.

Now, suddenly, once per turn when you bite with your fangs, you can both empower yourself and heal an ally at the same time. If you wanted to feel like a blood magic healer without homebrew, this is the way to do it.

15th level: Improved Defender

At 15th level, your Arcane Jolt [becomes] more powerful:

  • The [...] healing of your Arcane Jolt [increases] to 4d6.

Now you're healing your ally for 4d6, and yourself for 2d4+7 at max. It's pretty skewed in their favor, obviously. But it's a fun way to top off your party's hit points and help with keeping them alive.


Tasha's Otherworldly Guise (6th Level) | [Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard]

[...] All your weapon attacks are magical, and when you make a weapon attack, you can use your spell casting ability modifier instead of Strength or Dexterity for the attack and damage rolls. [...]

In my opinion, this is by far the best method of granting Vampiric Bite magic weapon status for spellcasters.

While you don't get the +1 to +3 bonus from the other spells, you should be able to use your spell casting ability modifier instead of Constitution. This spell is available to Sorcerers, Warlocks and Wizards.

Though it is only a 1-minute Concentration spell, it grants you many more benefits, such as a 40 ft. flight speed, an Extra Weapon Attack, +2 to AC. If you choose to align with the Lower Planes, you gain immunity to Poison and Fire damage, and the Poisoned Condition. And if you choose to align with the Upper Planes, you gain immunity to Radiant and Necrotic Damage, and the Charmed Condition (better in my opinion).


Originally this post was tailored specifically to spellcasters, but I've since made edits to add details on Kensei Monk and Battle Smith Artificer to break them down for those who don't know how they work. I'll continue making edits as time goes on and I discover more ways to make your teeth a magical murder weapon. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your feeding frenzies.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't see a piercing requirement for Elemental Weapon, and I'm not sure why the Radiant damage for Holy Weapon would not apply. I'm referencing the spells through D&D Beyond, if that matters. As a side note, piercing seems like it would be the obvious damage type for a vampiric bite. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 19, 2023 at 20:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MichaelRichardson The piercing requirement being referred to is the Dhampir's bite mechanic: "When you attack with this bite and hit a creature that isn't a Construct or an Undead, you can empower yourself in one of the following ways of your choice: - You regain hit points equal to the piercing damage dealt by the bite. - You gain a bonus to the next ability check or attack roll you make; the bonus equals the piercing damage dealt by the bite." The elemental/radiant damage still apply, they just don't benefit the bite's ability. \$\endgroup\$
    – smbailey
    Sep 20, 2023 at 15:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @smbailey I'll add in the Vampiric Bite's mechanics into the main post, so that clarification shouldn't be needed in the future. Thank you for picking up my slack. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 21, 2023 at 7:03
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I have and play this character. What I did was set my stats high in the beginning and took on feats. I took on druid feats and added the druid cantrip Primal Savagery. This is already a druid magical bite attack that deals poison damage. You do your roll to attack, then you roll your attack damage then roll your poison damage. It is amazing and the best part is that it is a Cantrip. You can cast it as many times as you attack.

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    Jul 2, 2022 at 2:36

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