I'm looking for feats or other permanent class features that can increase my CMB for purposes of grappling with my druid character. The grappling would be almost always occurring while in wild shape form.

I do not want gear suggestions (permanent or consumable), spells, or other temporary buffs. I would like to know of feats for even higher levels which I do not qualify for at the moment 1–20 level.

Current stats:

Level 2 Human Druid
Str 18, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 9, Wis 15, Cha 7
Feats: Improved Initiative, Improved Spell Sharing


2 Answers 2



The grapple feat chain will increase your grapple CMB, and are the easiest way to obtain a bonus on your checks:

  • Improved Grapple: +2 on grapple checks and CMD against grapples. But this requires improved unarmed strike, or dirty fighting (see bellow).
  • Greater Grapple: An additional +2 on grapple checks.

There are also a few other feats that can increase your CMB on grapple attempts:

  • Powerful Shape (requires druid 8): Grants a bonus on CMB and CMD as if your size was one cathegory larger while in Wild Shape.
  • Unfair Grip (requires power attack): You gain +1 bonus on grapple checks to maintain a grapple, while your enemies take -1 on their checks to escape your grapples.
  • Kraken Style (requires BAB +3): Adds a +2 bonus on grapple checks to maintain a grapple.
  • Dirty Fighting: This will either allow you to grapple without improved grapple while flanking, or increase your flanking bonus to +4 instead of +2 to initiate a grapple while flanking. Not only that, this feat will allow you to qualify for other feats as if you had Dex 13, Int 13, Combat Expertise, and Improved Unarmed Strike.

If you take Dirty Fighting, you can qualify for Improved Grapple as if you had Improved Unarmed Strike, making the feat unnecessary, while still granting a bonus on grapple checks. The only thing missing for Kraken Style would be BAB +3 then, as you would already have the other requeriments. Unfair Grip would still require Power Attack though.


The feat Additional Traits, if traits are allowed by your GM, can grant you access to two religion traits that increase your grapple CMB:

Keep in mind that both grant trait bonuses and will not stack.

Turn into creatures that can grab foes

The grab special monster ability grants a +4 bonus on grapple checks to maintain or start a grapple.


Improved grapple, and greater grapple are the obvious first choices. They require a improved unarmed strike as a prerequisite, so are slightly expensive in terms of feats. They are also inflexible. If you find yourself in a situation where grappling is a terrible choice, you are stuck.

If you are using an animal form with grab attacks, anything that improves your to hit chances dramatically improves your chances of a successful grapple resulting from those attacks. My DM allowed weapon focus claws, but I am not sure if he was pushing the rules.

Natural spell would allow you more flexibility in buffing yourself in combat. These buffs could give you better grapples. You can also use it to summon allies who can also help you grapple.

A 1 level dip into monk gets improved unarmed strike and improved grapple. Monks also have 3 good saves, and a couple of useful class skills you don't already have.


You must log in to answer this question.

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