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Questions tagged [ability-scores]

For questions primarily about ability scores (and their associated abilities), mechanical components of a character in all editions of D&D that represent the character's innate attributes: Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, Charisma.

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Do the "set ability score to 19" magic items function while using Wild Shape?

If you, a druid who is attuned to an Amulet of Health, Gauntlets of Ogre Power, or Headband of Intellect, uses Wild Shape, choosing to wear the piece of equipment, do you gain the benefit of the ...
User 23415's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
203 views

Do rangers have any features that would encourage them to fight with Dexterity instead of Strength?

Does the ranger have any class features that would be less powerful if they used Strength (instead of Dexterity) as their primary offensive ability? Obviously, this hypothetical ranger would be bad at ...
User 23415's user avatar
  • 3,716
1 vote
1 answer
166 views

What beasts have the lowest Con, Wis, and Cha saves?

Suppose you have a target you absolutely need to fail a particular saving throw, and you've gotten a wand of polymorph to help improve your odds. Examples: a single dose of an expensive poison or a ...
user10063's user avatar
  • 3,350
7 votes
1 answer
193 views

Can a catatonic creature (0 charisma) be controlled via domination magic?

If a creature’s ability score is reduced to 0, say charisma, and the creature becomes helpless (in this case catatonic), does domination (mind affecting) magic even function? My intuition would be ...
Frank Castle's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
118 views

AnyDice - Complicated Stat Distribution

I'm trying to model average stat distributions for characters based on what a friend sent me: Balanced Stat Roll Roll 4d6 drop lowest five times. Count them together and deduct the total from 72. The ...
Cycanis's user avatar
  • 43
13 votes
1 answer
2k views

What does it mean for plague to "continue until the victim reaches Constitution 0"?

I could use some help understanding the following line as it pertains to the Plague disease carried by a Plague Spewer (Monster Manuel III, pg. 125): Unlike normal diseases, plague continues until ...
Frank Castle's user avatar
19 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why would I put an ASI into Con instead of taking the Tough feat?

I know that raising your Constitution modifier increases your maximum health. However, the Tough feat also does this, but gives twice as much health. What other benefits does a +2 to Con give, and ...
User 23415's user avatar
  • 3,716
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can you select a feat that increases an attribute by 1 for an attribute that is already at 20?

This is a bit of a convoluted question with several parts that didn't fit in the title. The Telepathic feat gives +1 in either Int, Wis or Cha to a maximum of 20. There is no question here, one ...
oliver.c's user avatar
  • 379
4 votes
0 answers
61 views

How exactly do ability score adjusting magic items and ability score improvements interact? [duplicate]

Obviously the tomes and manuals are clear-cut in how they function, but when it comes to magic items that "overwrite" or "replace" an ability score with a value, such as gauntlets ...
ZarHakkar's user avatar
  • 848
20 votes
4 answers
3k views

What stat would I use for a crossbow if I throw it rather than shooting it? (Specifically using Elemental Cleaver)

I've got a silly build I'm working on revolving around Path of the Giant Elemental Cleaver which grants a weapon the Thrown property. Can I use my STR for the roll? The rules seem ambiguous: What I've ...
Daniel Tose's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
379 views

What NPC skill or ability should be used to oppose a PC's Intelligence check made when using the Disguise Kit?

The Player's Handbook states that "The DM might call for an Intelligence check when you try to accomplish tasks like [...] Pull together a disguise to pass as a city guard." However, it's ...
Kerrick's user avatar
  • 4,054
17 votes
1 answer
885 views

Is there any way to use Dexterity for spellcasting or as a named spellcasting ability?

I've always wondered about creating a character who trains to use every spellcasting ability. The publication of Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants introduces the possibility of using Strength in a ...
yeastgoblin's user avatar
  • 1,330
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Can I put all points in one ability with customized origins?

I was making a mountain dwarf monk in dnd beyond and was able to get my dex up to 19 at level one, using point buy and customized origins (it allowed me to put both initial ASIs on dex). This seems ...
Gabriel De Oliveira Caetano's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

If a monk increases their dexterity or wisdom modifier, does their AC increase as well?

I'm DM-ing an adventure, and my players are about to hit level 4, where the first ability score increase happens. If my monk chooses to increase their dexterity or wisdom, will their AC increase as ...
user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
3k views

What is the significance of Headband of Intellect et al setting the stat to 19?

Besides the psychological effect of the stat raising item being almost but not quite perfect, is there a situation where 19 in an attribute is different from it being set to 18?
Comic Sans Seraphim's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
2k views

Can I create a creature with a high Charisma score even if it can't speak?

I am planning to create a monster which should charm the players, but this creature doesn't talk (I am planning to create a gold golem, which should incentivize greed and lust). I wonder if high ...
Leonardo's user avatar
  • 933
-3 votes
1 answer
2k views

Which officially published monsters have the highest/lowest total ability scores?

In 5th edition Dungeons and Dragons, every monster in the Monster Manual (as well as other source books) has a predefined Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma score in ...
ApproachingDarknessFish's user avatar
16 votes
4 answers
5k views

Which ability is most related to insanity: Wisdom, Charisma, Constitution, or Intelligence?

I was thinking about making a PC warlock with the Great Old One as a patron. I noticed that under the Great Old One's Book of Shadows, some warlocks could be described as having growing insanity. I ...
TieflingDragon84's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
285 views

What happens to a PC lycanthrope's ability scores if it becomes cured? [duplicate]

I have a Fighter character who is a lycanthrope and had a very low Strength score originally, but thanks to her lycanthropic affliction, her Strength is now the highest score. Will her Strength score ...
TieflingDragon84's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
417 views

How does Constitution drain/damage interact with minimum hit points?

Related to, but not the same as this: Polymorph, HP, and Constitution damage/drain In his answer to the question Loss of bear form and hp of a bear warrior, @KRyan mentions a rule about constitution ...
fectin's user avatar
  • 13.8k
19 votes
3 answers
9k views

How to deal with an overpowered player whose level 1 stats are 18's and 19's, with a 25 in strength

I've recently started a new D&D 5e campaign that is mainly roleplaying focused. One of my players is playing a barbarian gnome, and rolled all of their stats... and got a 25 for strength (and 18's ...
metror's user avatar
  • 309
3 votes
3 answers
496 views

What kind of disadvantages can I expect while building a supporting Player Character with low Dexterity?

I am building a Duegar Alchemist with a Folk Hero background who's inspired by the support/utility role builds I have been hearing and reading about. In other words, a character who focuses more on ...
Victor B's user avatar
  • 7,388
12 votes
2 answers
2k views

What effect does a potion of giant strength have upon a monster?

An adventure module I own indicates that as soon as a fight breaks out, the villian's quasit minion will drink a potion of hill giant strength. Looking at the quasit stat block, I am assuming its claw(...
new Thrall's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
4k views

What are all the ways to change my attack roll's ability modifier? [duplicate]

Hexblade Warlock has this line in it: When you attack with that weapon, you can use your Charisma modifier, instead of Strength or Dexterity, for the attack and damage rolls. Battle Smith Artificer ...
Tsumiki Miniwa's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
4k views

What are the ways one can avoid using STR or DEX as an attack modifier?

For context, I am aiming to create a melee fighter, but would like to avoid using Strength and Dexterity as my attack modifier. I know that there are a few ways each with their limitations, but when I ...
Victor B's user avatar
  • 7,388
4 votes
2 answers
252 views

Is there a way to use Strength for the Perform Skill?

How (if possible) would one utilize their Strength ability score with the Perform Skill? Be that in lieu of Charisma or in addition to it. There are so many ways to shuffle the ability score that ...
Priestess Lucy's user avatar
25 votes
5 answers
3k views

Does an Antimagic Field suppress the ability score increases granted by the Manual or Tome magic items?

There are several "manual"/"tome" magic items that permanently increase a character's ability score and the maximum value for that score by 2: the Manual of Bodily Health, the ...
Xofh's user avatar
  • 351
5 votes
4 answers
1k views

Gold Dragonborn Sorcerer level 3. ASI or Elemental Adept at level 4?

My Gold Dragonborn Sorcerer is level 3, 18 CHA, +4 modifier. I'm trying to build Pyro from Team Fortress 2 in D&D 5e, and I'm optimizing for high fire damage. Should I take the ASI to get a +7 ...
wheatleycrab's user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
3k views

What is the rarity of a magic item which permanently increases an ability score up to at most 13?

In the DMG there are items like the Tome of Leadership and Influence that gives a permanent +2 to charisma and charisma maximum (and other similar Tomes and Manuals for other abilities), but they all ...
Jay Lemmon's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
941 views

When does Polearm Master deal more damage than an ASI?

Would a fighter deal more expected damage by picking the Polearm Master feat at any point before they maxed their Strength, or is it better to first always increase your Strength in terms of damage? ...
Nobody the Hobgoblin's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
3k views

Does Great Weapon Master deal more expected damage than an ASI?

Some people claim that an ASI normally contributes more than any given feat. It is nearly always better than the Dual Wielder feat. However, the Crossbow Expert feat is better damage than an ASI (at ...
Nobody the Hobgoblin's user avatar
23 votes
3 answers
4k views

In D&D 3.5, what happens when you plop a headband of intellect on an animal?

Prompted by a discussion in comments here The animal type states: Intelligence score of 1 or 2 (no creature with an Intelligence score of 3 or higher can be an animal). A headband of intellect adds ...
fectin's user avatar
  • 13.8k
3 votes
2 answers
375 views

Are ability scores ever rolled for checks?

Are there checks against the ability scores? I do not mean skills. Eg. In a tavern, a player is challenged to an arm wrestle. Is this resolved via a D20+STR or is this invalid because this is what ...
Jarryd's user avatar
  • 387
2 votes
2 answers
593 views

When rolling initiative for DM-controlled creatures, does their Dexterity modifier apply?

When the DM is rolling initiative for its monsters, does their Dexterity modifier apply, or does the DM just roll a d20 on its own?
Benny S.'s user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

How to calculate HP if an item increases constitution

I am sorry if this question seems obvious, I just cannot find the answer anywhere. HP increase every level with the hit dice roll and the constitution bonus is added every level. What happens when the ...
Digius's user avatar
  • 2,233
6 votes
2 answers
1k views

What is the average total ability score bonus for the best of 4 DCC Characters?

I need some math help to determine what an average character that survived a DCC funnel is like. When playing a funnel in Dungeon Crawl Classics, players get 4 characters each. Should they survive, ...
Ponggoleechee's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
119 views

Can you spellburn multiple ability scores in the same casting?

Let's say a wizard is casting a spell, and they spellburn 5 points of Strength, and 5 points of Stamina, for a total bonus of +10 to their spell check. Is this scenario possible given RAW? The ...
Ponggoleechee's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
774 views

Does the Feral Tiefling still use Charisma as its spellcasting ability for the Infernal Legacy trait?

I'm new in this world of D&D. I was reading through the Player's Handbook and decided to create a character following the process in Chapter 1 (Step-by-Step Characters). The Tiefling caught my ...
Azeveco's user avatar
  • 73
6 votes
3 answers
574 views

Can a shield guardian be commanded to obey commands from the whole party?

This doesn't necessarily apply just to shield guardians, because it could go the same way with other minions. If you have the ability to command something, a shield guardian in my particular case, can ...
TinyHusband 's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
173 views

Does Swordsage's Insightful Strike Apply to Rolls for Ability Score Damage?

Insightful Strike, from the Tome of Battle's Swordsage class, says: At 4th level, you can add your Wisdom modifier as a bonus on damage rolls whenever you execute a strike from the chosen discipline. ...
PipperChip's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is there a way to add my Strength modifier to my Armor Class?

It's an age old question -- how can I make it as hard as possible for enemies to hit me, so I can slaughter them without even the slightest jostling of my coif? Typically, for those wanting to proceed ...
toki's user avatar
  • 329
19 votes
2 answers
3k views

If a sentient item such as Blackrazor maintains concentration on a spell but does not have a Constitution score, can its concentration be broken?

Some sentient items in D&D have spellcasting capabilities. For example, the description of the sentient magic greatsword Blackrazor says (DMG, p. 217): Blackrazor can cast the haste spell on you ...
Matthew Perryman's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
8k views

Do Constitution Changes affect Current hit points in D&D 5e?

I know that changes to Constitution retroactively affect Maximum Hit Points, but I'm not sure what to do about current hit points. Say a level 3 character has 12/20 hit points and their Con modifier ...
Nick Campbell's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
61 views

Does "ability score damage" to your spellcasting ability cause you to "forget" prepared spells? [duplicate]

There are very few monsters or effects in D&D 5e that deal ability score damage or ability drain, but they are various enough for this to come up. Say you are a 5th-level wizard with an ...
ZarHakkar's user avatar
  • 848
2 votes
1 answer
611 views

What stat would involve willpower (for a Jekyll and Hyde type of character to resist a personality switch)? [duplicate]

So for my upcoming D&D campaign I was planning to play a Jekyll and Hyde type of character. I want the DM to just look at me whenever and tell me to roll for whatever stat involves willpower to ...
Phoenix_Project's user avatar
14 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is it possible to exchange ability scores (i.e. reducing one ability score and increasing another) during character creation?

Looking into some builds online I perceived that some people have two or three ability scores at 8, even if this cannot be explained by the Ancestry Flaw. Is there any way to exchange Ability Scores (...
ruedi's user avatar
  • 6,547
15 votes
3 answers
3k views

If a paladin has a negative Charisma modifier, how many times can they use the Divine Sense feature (per long rest)?

The description of the paladin's Divine Sense feature says, in part: You can use this feature a number of times equal to 1 + your Charisma modifier. When you finish a long rest, you regain all ...
Samuelzila's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
376 views

Is an additional saving throw required if the corresponding ability score changes?

Examples: A fighter is fighting a dragon. The dragon uses its Frightful Presence action. The fighter, who has a Wisdom score of 15, succeeds on the DC 16 Wisdom saving throw. It is then the party ...
uhhuhhuh's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
2k views

Are there any summoning spells on the warlock spell list that don't require high Charisma to be effective?

Me and my friends are running a campaign in D&D 5e. I am playing a Genie-patron (Marid) Pact of the Blade warlock (with a 1-level fighter dip at the start) currently. My Str and Con scores are 16 (...
Bay Pacman's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
6k views

List of ancestry ability bonuses

What are the ability bonuses for each ancestry? This might be very useful in picking the right ancestry for a build.
András's user avatar
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