As a DM I wonder, what conditions if any must be met to impose an advantage or disadvantage on a roll.

Example - the PC's are tracking a wolf, but the entire party wandered over the tracks several times before noticing them, disadvantage survival (tracking)?

Example - the PC's have had experience handling a similar magical item, they find an item and want to determine if it is evil/good/what effect it may have. Advantage arcana?

Just wondering what is RAW on granting advantage for checks, or if I have accidentally been home brewing certain situations.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Just a note: It is not homebrew to act like a DM in 5th edition. The design intent was to go more for "rulings over rules" with a less intense focus on "rules and rules lawyering" in order to keep the game flowing and the fun active. Your judgment is a key element to your table's game. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 25, 2016 at 12:35

1 Answer 1


As far as the rules are concerned, you can give advantage or disadvantage whenever you deem it appropriate.

The DM can also decide that circumstances influence a roll in one direction or the other and grant advantage or impose disadvantage as a result.

The DMG gives some more guidance on when you might deem it appropriate in the section titled Advantage and Disadvantage on page 239.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .