I'm playing a monk in our campaign.

And at level one I can make an unarmed strike after each attack, but I don't know how to calculate its damage correctly.

On a normal attack with a Quarterstaff it's a +4 to hit (with a +2 Dex Mod) and 1d8+2 for damage.

But on the bonus unarmed strike i'm not so sure. It's a 1d4 and a +2 to hit, but do I also get the +2 damage from my Dex mod?


3 Answers 3


Yes, your unarmed attack are +4 to hit and deal 1d4 + 2 damage

You can use Dexterity instead of Strength for the attack and damage rolls of your unarmed strikes and monk weapons.


The bonus attack is just your standard monk unarmed strike. This means the Martial Arts ability that allows the addition of either DEX or STR to unarmed strike attacks and damage rolls can be used.

Normal attack roll: 1d20 + proficiency bonus + (STR or DEX).

At level 1 (damage scales with level), its damage is 1d4+ (STR or DEX).


You dont add dex mod to addituonal attacks. Your first attack gets the bonus from your strength or dex mod, but not you offhand attacks. See two weapon fighting in the rules sections of the PHB.

Your first unarmed strike damage at lvl 1 is 1d4+dex mod. 2nd is just 1d4.

  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ A monk is unlikely to ever use the Two Weapon Fighting rules because they have access to Martial Arts and Flurry of Blows class features which are generally better. Among the differences is that they do allow you to add your Dex (or Str) modifier to your damage (and the damage additionally scales with your level). \$\endgroup\$
    – Blckknght
    May 29, 2019 at 11:04
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Also mandatory note that 5e doesn't have an primary-hand/offhand distinction unlike previous editions, the bonus action attack you can use when two-weapon-fighting doesn't get your ability modifier to damage but that is independent of which actual hand you're using at the time. If you have Extra Attack and can make multiple attacks in one Attack Action, they can be with any combination of the weapons you're wielding and they all get your normal bonus to damage. \$\endgroup\$
    – Carcer
    May 29, 2019 at 12:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    May 29, 2019 at 21:55

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