If you succeed on a Death Saving Throws 3 times, you don't recover any hitpoints. Instead, you become stable:
A stable creature doesn’t make death saving throws, even though it has 0 hit points, but it does remain unconscious.
The creature stops being stable, and must
start making death saving throws again, if it takes any
A stable ...
Don't get knocked unconscious
While this is not the answer you're looking for, it's about the best one we can give. An unconscious character can, by the plain English definition of the word, not act. Both in the reality of the game world as well as the rules, that not bleeding out is the only thing your character can do.
If your character keeps getting ...
Yes. This is implied by the rules on death saving throws (PHB p.197), which state in part (emphasis added):
If you take any damage while you have 0 hit points, you suffer a death saving throw failure.
Note that damage while you are at 0 hit points doesn't reduce your hit points, though:
A creature's current hit points (usually just called hit points) ...
Optional rule: Lingering Injury
There are no rules in the PHB limiting how often a PC can get up after being knocked to 0 HP. For DMs who don't like there being few consequences for dropping to 0 HP, in the DMG on page 272 there is an optional rule for lingering injuries that covers any PC who:
Receives a critical hit
Drops to 0 HP but is not killed out ...
No. (Unless they are asleep and you are using optional rules from XGtE)
From your quote:
Unconscious ... An unconscious creature is incapacitated (see the
condition), can't move or speak, and is unaware of its surroundings...
A related question (Can a bard grant bardic inspiration to an unconscious creature?) has an answer that says (...
Three death save successes and you're stable but still unconscious
On three successful death saves a PC becomes 'stable'. A companion can also stabilize an unconscious PC with a successful medicine check, or by casting the cantrip spare the dying.
Check the rules for 'Stabilizing a creature' again:
A stable creature doesn't make death saving throws, even ...
You are interpreting the rules correctly. A literal reading of these rules is that the paladin would become conscious at the start of each round unless they were actually killed.
This isn't necessarily unreasonable, and it's not necessarily the best level 20 capstone ability. Compare, for example, to level 20 moon druids, who can wild shape as a bonus ...
No, there isn't. You are not missing anything.
The rules are very clear - you can only choose to deal a non-lethal blow with a melee attack.
The way I reason is that while you can easily control a melee attack, say, by hitting with the pommel of the sword, it is quite hard to control an arrow being thrown at an almost-dead character in order to not kill it. ...
Unless a creature's lowered its spell resistance prior to being rendered unconscious, a healing spell's caster checks that creature's spell resistance
According to the rules, a spell noted as harmless in its Saving Throw entry does not automatically overcome spell resistance. Further, a creature that's unconscious does not automatically lower its spell ...
To tell if someone is sleeping rather than unconscious:
Listen for snoring
Listen for regular breathing
Listen for the absence of struggling/ragged breathes
Listen for the absence of any disturbing sounds (blood gargling with every breath)
Look to see if they have any visible wounds
Look to see if they appear to be laying comfortable
Look to see if they are ...
They don't wear off
As you indicate, the duration of either potion is one hour, and there is no limitation should the affected creature become unconscious.
The general rules for magic items also make no mention of such a limitation. In fact, this is the only excerpt I could find addressing durations and potions:
Many items, such as potions, bypass the ...
Use a skill check
The rules state:
An ability check tests a character's or monster's innate talent and training in an effort to overcome a challenge [such as determining a creature's status!]. The DM calls for an ability check when a character or monster attempts an action (other than an attack) that has a chance of failure.
As a DM, I might allow any of ...
The Paralyzed condition lasts until a minute passes (or you pass the save); in general, conditions tell you when/how they end
The section on "Conditions" states:
[...] A condition lasts either until it is countered (the prone condition is countered by standing up, for example) or for a duration specified by the effect that imposed the condition.
In this ...
Talk about teamwork
I've had dozens of parties where there's only one cleric with healing magic, but I've never seen that Cleric make more than two death saving throws in a combat, generally not even a single one. If you are constantly going down and nobody is helping you back up, your team is doing a pretty bad job at..well... being a team.
Ask the beefier ...
Yes, but damage is a different concept at 0 HP than at nonzero HP.
Hit point mechanics change when a character reaches 0 HP. The character can still be hit with attacks and other damaging effects, but they don't take additional points of HP damage. Instead there are two variations:
1. Failed death saves
Instead of taking damage, a character at 0 HP that is ...
Just tell them.
Suppose you impose some barrier, such as a Medicine check, to know if they're injured-unconscious or just sleeping. Player tries it and fails. Then what?
The guy is sleeping but the PC thinks they're critically injured and uses a healing spell or something. Minor waste of resources, no big deal.
The guy is actually bleeding to death but the ...
In general: No.
Being unconscious does not disadvantage your constitution saves.
Constitution "measures health, stamina, and vital force." Saves of this variety are general cases of intrinsic bodily fortitude against a variety of harmful effects such as poison, disease, cold, and others that being unconscious doesn't generally affect.
In specific cases: ...
On reaching 0 HP
Once a character reaches 0 HP, they are unconscious, and starts rolling death saving throws on their turn. (See page 197 of the Player's Handbook.)
When rolling Death Saving Throws
When making death saving throws, there are 4 categories of results that we care about: rolling a 1 on the d20, rolling a total between 2 and 9, rolling a total ...
There are the Lingering Injuries optional rule
In the standard rules there are no lingering effects from damage, including that which reduces a creature to 0 hit points (other than the obvious lingering effect of death). However, on page 272 of the Dungeon Master's Guide there are a set of optional rules for lingering injuries.
It's up to you to decide when ...
To add to AlienAtSystem's answer, you can also boost your resilience by way of stat increases (ASIs) and Feats (if your GM allows them).
Some useful ones might be:
Tough: Your hit point maximum increases by an amount equal to twice your level when you gain This feat. Whenever you gain a level thereafter, your hit point maximum
increases by an ...
Others have answered what you cannot do, or how you can prevent this from happening. What you can do is describe your moans in agony, your blood pooling around you, and your casual conversation with the God of Death, Boatman, or whoever Shepherds the Dead into their Final Resting Place. Tell them that you're not ready to go yet, and someone will be along to ...
Death saves are not supposed to be fun
What level is this character? I understand levels 1-3 are difficult, a nasty crit from anything and you're all done. But 4th+ you should be able to eat a hit and gauge how many more your character can take. If one hit takes half your life, get out of close combat.
Your party should pick up some slack and let you have ...
The description of the unconscious condition says:
can't move or speak, and is unaware of its surroundings
If there were some ambiguity around awareness with being unconscious, these rules quell that ambiguity by stipulating that a creature that is unconscious is also unaware.
It is likely the word “unaware” is used because many creatures in D&...
Ask your teammates to administer a potion of healing
A Potion of Healing can be administered to an unconscious creature by any other character, although it takes an action:
administering a potion takes an action
Talk to other players in advance, let some of them carry a healing potion and help your cleric when he is down, instead of just watching him ...
Normally the software rendering you unconscious doesn't want to disconnect you, so that you can still be tracked via your connection. In fact, there are rules for attempts to jack out because of this. Ruling that being rendered unconscious allows one to, effectively, automatically jack out would make being knocked out intentionally a good fallback strategy ...
It's always hard to prove a negative, but I think there's low-level spells fixing all possible conditions that produce unconsciousness, unless it's caused by some weird effect by a high level monster.
Anyway, I can think of several reasons why this guy might still be unconscious when the PCs find them.
Nobody noticed the unconscious body yet. Maybe some ...
This works normally by a strict reading of the spell
Sending (PHB, 274) doesn't actually require the creature to be conscious. It only requires that they have a certain intelligence.
Because there is no requirement for being conscious or awake, then we can read the spell to function as-is in terms of being able to send a message and allowing the recipient to ...
An attack is anything with an attack roll; saving throws do not have an attack roll so they are not attacks and do not interact with the unconscious rule.
The Player's Handbook states:
If there's ever any question whether something you're doing counts as an attack, the rule is simple: if you're making an attack roll, you're making an attack.
(See the ...
As a DM I roll (most) die in the open - death is a real possibility. This was discussed in session zero, and we all prefer that excitement in our game.
This means party plays a lot more cautiously, scouting, planning, and running away (I told them in session zero there are things that can kill them without breaking a sweat, and it is their job to know when ...
Some effects (e.g. a rogue's knock-out blow or a brawler's knockout), some spells (e.g. Color Spray), and some supernatural abilities (e.g. Ice Tomb) should do the trick.
As long as the unconsciousness isn't due to having the dying condition, magical healing won't remove it (although you can use smelling salts to get another save). Poisons can all be ...