Let's say a human Druid uses Wild Shape to turn into a Rat, which has 30 ft. Darkvision.

The Wild Shape description says (emphasis mine):

You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them if the new form is physically capable of doing so. However, you can't use any of your Special senses, such as Darkvision, unless your new form also has that sense.

Humans don't have any kind of Darkvision. Does "also" mean that the human Druid actually won't gain the Darkvision, being in the Rat shape?


1 Answer 1


If the form you take with Wild Shape has Darkvision, you will have Darkvision while Wild Shaped into that form.

The section of Wild Shape you reference in your question is about keeping features from your normal form while in your Wild Shape form, and includes an exception for special senses such as Darkvision.

The general rule for gaining features from your new form is this:

Your game statistics are replaced by the statistics of the beast, [...]

The Monster Manual has a long section on monster statistics, listing off a whole bunch of things - including senses (page 9). So under this rule, while in Wild Shape, the senses of your new form replace the senses of your normal form. And unlike the previously mentioned rule about features from your original form, Wild Shape has no exceptions for senses.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Suppose you have Darkvision: 90 ft. You shape into a Rat. Is your Darkvision: 90 ft replaced by Darkvsion: 30 ft, or because you wild shaped into a Rat who also has Darkvision, do you keep your Darkvision? I guess this is a distinct question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yakk
    Nov 14, 2016 at 14:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Yakk I think it is a distinct question, but I also think it's a very interesting one - I encourage you to ask it! \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Nov 14, 2016 at 15:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Yakk There's no specific ruling for that that I could find. My personal interpretation of the rule is that Darkvision 30ft and Darkvision 90ft are two separate but similar senses. Therefore, you would get the rat's darkvision. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 14, 2016 at 19:07
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MarshallTigerus The "similar sense" doesn't say "Darkvision 30ft", but "Darkvision". I know I'd use the rule of cool (that you get 90ft), because it is at the least ambiguous, and err on the side of the PCs in that case. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yakk
    Nov 14, 2016 at 19:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ What about the "specific beats general" rule? There is that special point about senses and Darkvision in particular, besides, "statistics are replaced" is too broad. \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Nov 14, 2016 at 20:07

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