I am looking for ways for a character to become immune to the (5%) chance of automatically failing a saving throw because of a natural one on the d20 roll.

Aside from the Knight class at level 17

You no longer automatically fail a saving throw on a roll of 1" (PHB2 page 28)

and the feat Steadfast Determination

You do not automatically fail Fortitude saves on a roll of natural 1 (PHB2 page 83)

I could not find further sources or effects.

I vaguely remember the claim of someone writing a post or article about the Knight class, claiming one can get immune to natural ones on saving throws at level 1 - so I suspect there might be items with that effect.

Sadly, I find it quite hard to find relevant information via Google based on the specific meaning of the generic terms used for the issue.

Question: are there further sources to remove the "natural 1 = automatically failed saving throw regardless of the save bonus" rule?


2 Answers 2


Take the Pride domain

The question mentions "the claim [that] one can get immun[ity] to natural ones on saving throws at level 1." I suspect that claim was made by a player familiar with the granted power of the Pride domain (Spell Compendium 278–9). It allows the creature to reroll the first natural 1 on a saving throw, but the reroll must be taken, even if it's again a natural 1. Thus the domain's granted power will usually do what's desired. Many gods make available the Pride domain (see here), and in some settings a cleric with no deity can pick the domain (as per Deity, Domains, and Domain Spells on Player's Handbook 32). The granted power can also be gained from the planar touchstone site Catalogues of Enlightenment using the feat Planar Touchstone (Planar Handbook 41–2) or maybe just the feat Touchstone (Sandstorm 53). And, because this is D&D 3.5, undoubtedly other ways exist to gain that granted power, too.

Become a martial adept

Another alternative for avoiding rolling 1s on saving throws is the series of Tome of Battle maneuvers that replace a creature's saving throw with a Concentration skill check: the 1st-level Diamond Mind maneuver moment of perfect mind [counter] (ToB 64) for a Will save, the 2nd-level Diamond Mind maneuver action before thought [counter] (ToB 62) for a Ref save, and the 3rd-level Diamond Mind maneuver mind over body [counter] (ToB 64) for a Fort save. Each maneuver changes the nature of the listed saving throw into a skill check, and a natural 1 isn't an automatic failure on a skill check, but that natural 1 could still be a normal failure depending on the creature's modifiers. Martial scripts (ToB 147–8) aren't much use here, but many creatures may be able to benefit from such a maneuver by wearing a novice ring of Diamond Mind (ToB 149–50) (3,000 gp; 0 lbs.) or by taking the feat Martial Study (ToB 31–2).

  • \$\begingroup\$ I forgot about Pride, good call. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Apr 15, 2022 at 17:18

I’m not aware of any way to do this permanently, as knight and Steadfast Determination do.

The typical way to protect against natural 1’s is with rerolls, à la the Luck Domain. The domain is best, but there are other options:

  • Luck feats from Complete Scoundrel each give a luck reroll per day, and depending on which you have those can be used to protect against saving throw mishaps:

    • Dumb Luck allows a luck reroll to be used to turn a nat-1 into a nat-20 on a saving throw. It requires 6th level (and two other luck feats), though.
    • Survivor’s Luck uses a luck reroll to reroll a saving throw of any number, and doesn’t require anything and counts towards Dumb Luck’s prerequisites.
    • Third Time’s the Charm allows you to re-use the granted power of the Luck Domain immediately after it failed, and weirdly doesn’t require anything—not even the Luck Domain?
    • Unbelievable Luck doesn’t use luck rerolls, but it gives two rerolls in one feat, and gives a +2 bonus to your lowest save so long as you have a luck reroll left.

    So a level of cleric for the Luck Domain, and then Survivor’s Luck, Third Time’s the Charm, and Dumb Luck, gives you three luck rerolls (plus the Luck Domain reroll) which give you a lot of options for avoiding low saving throw rolls. But that’s still at most 4 times per day; Unbelievable Luck is a 50% improvement, and gives you a static bonus at the same time, which isn’t terrible. That’s a lot of feats though.

  • Protected Destiny from Races of Destiny allows a human to reroll a nat-1 once per day, but requires 3rd level.

  • \$\begingroup\$ In 3.5 many things did not require "obvious" prerequisites. For example, none of the metamagic feats in the 3.5 SRD requires any spellcasting. So I don't see anything especially weird with Third Time’s the Charm. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mołot
    Apr 15, 2022 at 14:47
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Phaant's luckstone (Ghostwalk 72) is a 1000 gp slotless consumable item that lets one reroll "as if using the granted power of the Luck domain" \$\endgroup\$
    – Chemus
    Apr 15, 2022 at 18:25
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Chemus And if we're going there, a once a day reroll is available from the luck blade (DMG 227) (22,060 gp for one with 0 wishes; 2 lbs.). I always assume, given the price, that epic characters set aside a few 100k gp for a a bunch of them since a luck blade doesn't have to be wielded to use its reroll power. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 16, 2022 at 3:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan True enough, though I neglected to mention that the luckstone can, expensively, power the feat mentioned in the answer, Third Time's the Charm, without the Luck domain power. \$\endgroup\$
    – Chemus
    Apr 16, 2022 at 9:44

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