Playing a Monk 5E in Dungeons and Dragons is no easy task, as the most crucial ability that they have is Dexterity.
As a result, they’re agile enough to give and avoid a couple of blows. But this might also spell doom for them when too much punching is involved.
While creating a Monk character, you should keep in mind their class features. For instance, which races are best suited for being Monks? What skills and abilities do these characters have? What weapons do they wield? What are the monk subclasses 5e?
Monks and DnD cleric fifth edition, both are religious services, but how do you distinguish them? That’s why we’ve compiled a 5e monk guide to make this game easier for you. Here, you’ll learn all that you need to know about this class. Check it out!
DND classes like clerics have features unique to their respective categories. So have the Monks!
Although some of their features are useful, while others aren’t. Find out which features you’ll need at what time in the game:-
- Hit Points:- Monks have d8 hit points, but these aren’t enough for such a martial class on the front line. So, always look out for opportunities where you can get more hit points and AC.
- Saves:- Monks get both Dexterity as well as Strength saves. After getting Diamond Soul at Level 14, they become proficient in all saves.
- Martial Arts:- This feature is the reason why Monks don’t need Strength. Even the need for feats and weapons are removed, as you get the advantages associated with two-weapon fighting.
- Patient Defense 5E:- Select this option when the Monk’s in low health. Moreover, as a bonus action, you can take the Dodge action by spending a ki point.
- Flurry of Blows:- After choosing the Attack action, you can get a bonus action of two unarmed strikes by spending a ki point.
- Step of the Wind 5E:- With this, your bonus action is the Dash or Disengage action, for which you need to spend one ki point. Also, you can jump double the usual distance.
- Unarmored Defense 5E:- When a roll20 monk achieves 20 Wisdom and 20 Dexterity, they get 20 AC. That’s equivalent to the AC of a character in armor!
- Evasion:- You can wipe out AOE effects with enough Reflex saves of the Monk, coupled with an improved Dexterity.
- Diamond Soul:- This dramatically increases the Monk’s ability to survive.
- Unarmored Movement:- Monks usually serve melee attacks, so if they get a bonus speed, it’s a huge advantage. In addition, they can also run up vertical surfaces and across water_ that’s so cool!
- Stillness of Mind 5E:- Since most of your enemies might exert Fear or Charm effects, this comes in handy for a Monk.
- Empty Body:- Monks don’t need an Invisibility Cloak to become invisible. And though Astral Projection can be used only in certain situations, it certainly is a bonus!
- Slow Fall:- It’s useful only in specific situations, but when you’re in one of these, the Slow Fall feature will save your life.
- Purity of Body:- As you keep reaching more levels, Poison and Disease get more frequent. Therefore, this feature is so helpful for Monks.
- Perfect Self:- It improves your Monk’s sustainability by a considerable mark.
- Extra Attack:- You can get four attacks with flurry of blows 5e, or you can settle for three attacks with the Martial Arts feature. This happens whenever you take the Attack action.
- Tongue of the Sun and Moon:- If your Monk can talk to objects, this feature is useful. But if they can’t, then this feature won’t be of much use to you.
- Ki-Empowered Strikes:- Use this feature when the game doesn’t involve any magical objects. Since Monks aren’t precisely the occult type, most of your foes can’t resist weapon attacks involving magic,
- Timeless Body:- When you reach the 15th level, nobody can increase your age magically. You won’t need food or water anymore. Even if your Monk’s old, they won’t get frail, though they can die.
- Ki:- Monks carefully study the magical energy flowing through all living bodies. This energy is called ‘Ki’. So, they harness the ki within their own bodies to go beyond their usual physical capabilities and prevent the ki’s flow in their enemies’ bodies. Thus, with this power, they can infuse their unarmed strikes with abnormal strength and speed. Gaining more experience gives them more control over their bodies and those of their foes, by mastering ki. Moreover, when you spend ki points, you need to regain those by meditating for at least half an hour during a long or short rest. Some of the basic ki features are:-
Stunning Strike 5E
This feature gets enabled when you reach the 5th Monk level. Accordingly, spend a ki point to select the stunning strike 5e option after hitting your enemy with a melee attack.
However, the best part’s that there aren’t any restrictions on the number of times you can choose to hit your opponents with a 5e stunning strike.
Deflect Missiles 5E
While facing a ranged weapon attack, catch or deflect the missile using the deflect missiles 5e option. You can start choosing it from the 3rd Monk level. Since doing so reduces the damage from the attack by 1d10 as well as your Monk level.
In case the damage is reduced to 0, and the missile is small enough to fit in your hand, you can catch it. Then, make a ranged weapon attack with this missile by spending one ki point.
The missile, with 60 feet long-range and a 20-feet normal range, then becomes the Monk’s weapon during this attack.
5E Monk Guide: Monastic Traditions 5E
As a Monk, you can choose any of the twelve monk subclasses 5e. Each subclass has unique features. However, you might think, religion’s boring, but even a blood hunter guide 5e needs this skill to recognize enemies. Therefore, select one of the below monk traditions 5e to follow:-
Way of the Open Hand
The 5e open hand monk is not only a supreme martial artist, but they also use advanced meditation to prevent harm.
- Wholeness of Body:- You can start healing yourself from the 6th level. It also lets you regain hit points equal to thrice the level of your Monk. But before you can reuse this feature, you need a long rest.
- Quivering Palm 5E:- In your enemy’s body, you can set up lethal vibrations lasting for some days equal to the Monk’s level. Furthermore, this feature is unlocked at the 17th Monk level, after hitting your opponent with an unarmed strike. At a time, you can affect only one creature with this feature.
- Tranquility:- It lets you enter an extraordinary meditation mode at the 11th level. So, take a long rest to gain a Sanctuary spell effect.
Way of the Four Elements
- Mist Stance:- After reaching the 11th level, you can transform yourself or someone else into a gaseous form. Therefore, during a fight, you can use this on your foes, or on your allies to let them drift through keyholes.
- Ride the Wind:- It lets the Monk fly when you reach the 11th level.
- Fangs of the Fire Snake:- To make blasts of fire come out of your hands or feet, spend a ki point. If you want to deal bonus 1d10 fire damage, you have to spend another ki point.
Way of the Astral Self
Struggling internally with their ki, these Monks can summon parts of their Astral Self by embracing their urges.
Way of Mercy
Monks who follow this Way help the hurt and the poor by manipulating others’ life force. But when a creature’s condition is beyond help, the Monks swiftly end such lives as an act of mercy to these creatures.
Way of Shadow
Reaching the 3rd level, Shadow Arts give you Minor Illusion, Pass Without Trace, and other spells that you can cast using ki. In addition, with Shadow Step at the 6th level, you can teleport from one dim-lit spot to another.
Way of the Long Death
Death, its meaning, and its process_ these are what interest the followers of this Way. They keep taking others’ lives to preserve their own, and aren’t easy to kill.
Way of the Soul Knife
Beware of these deadly assassins! They’re useful not only during combat, but also in non-combat situations. Moreover, tracking down enemies by perceiving their auras is a specialty of these Monks.
Way of the Cobalt Soul
Those who follow the Way of the Cobalt Soul devote their entire lives to unfold life’s secrets. So, they gain control over their enemies by learning and understanding their mysteries.
Way of Tranquility
These Monks are more inclined towards peace than any of those following other monastic traditions 5e. Resolving conflicts with understanding and diplomacy, although they’re capable enough of fighting, but see this method as a last resort.
Way of the Drunken Master
As they can avoid and bear damage, such Monks are durable and flit about during combat.
Way of the Sun Soul
Your Ki fuels radiant damage with which you can blast your enemies.
Way of the Kensei
These Monks are almost invincible when they fight with weapons.
Monk DND 5E: Skills, Abilities, and Feats
- Religion (INT):- Firstly, this is one of the best knowledge skills in the game. But it’s not much use getting this skill for your Monk, since they already have Intelligence, and don’t need any more of it.
- Stealth (DEX):- Monks depend a lot on Dexterity, which is why Stealth is the best option for them.
- Acrobatics (DEX):- This skill helps Monks only in certain situations that are favorable for them, so think twice before choosing it.
- Insight (WIS):- Insight is the most helpful skill when a dnd 5e Monk faces a class with Charisma, like the Bard. Since it lets them understand if someone is lying to them, has any hidden agenda, or is trying to deceive them.
- History (INT):- Whether this skill comes in handy or not depends on your campaign style. Nevertheless, it’s useful when Monks are faced with their favorable situations.
- Athletics (STR);- Monks don’t have enough Strength to enhance their Athletics skill. But they can use Shove and Grapple to their advantage if they do have a bit of Strength.
- Dexterity:-The Monk rules the world of Dexterity.
- Wisdom:- This increases the Monk’s AC as well as their other abilities.
- Intelligence:- Unless it’s necessary to use knowledge skills, you’d better leave out Intelligence.
- Strength:- Monks don’t need much Strength because they’ve got good Strength saves. But a little bit more of it will help you increase the effectiveness of these saves.
- Charisma:- Avoid this ability for a Monk at all costs.
- Constitution:- Don’t ignore Constitution, because Monks haven’t got many hit points_ just 1d8 damage.
The Best Monk Feats 5E
- Durable:- This feat enhances your Monk’s ability to survive, no matter what happens.
- Lucky:- With luck points, you can cancel other’s luck, or roll a bonus d20 to select which one counts. So, get your party out of a sticky spot with this feat.
- Defensive Duelist:- This might be the only feat that works best with a Monk’s Short Sword.
- Healer:- It lets the Monk buy healing potions for themselves or their party.
- Magic Initiate:- Monks can’t use Flurry of Blows or Martial Arts unless they’re using the Attack action.
- Mobile:- If you want your Monk to be swift of foot, Mobile is the feat for you. It gives your character +10 ft. speed, so that they can bolt through back-breaking terrains. However, when your Monk starts with melee attacks, they can’t get hit with opportunity attacks, thanks to the Mobile feat.
- Mage Slayer:- Ranged and melee attackers don’t have much of a chance while facing a Monk. But if a spellcaster turns up, you might have a problem. Hence, the Mage Slayer feat helps you fight spellcasters by giving you extra attacks against them. If the Monk tries to break an enemy’s concentration, this feat will provide them with a disadvantage.
- Observant:- It gives Monks enough Wisdom to be able to enhance their Perception.
- Resilient:- Choose any ability score to get +1 with this feat. If you want to save throws using this particular ability, you’ll get an advantage.
- Alert:- It gives +5 to your ability to take the initiative, which means that the Monk gets to scout ahead of the party. But this feat’s not essential for any class, except for Rogues. It does let you be calm and conscious, though, even when some hidden foes catch you unawares.
- Tough:- Go with this feat if you want to get more hit points for your Monk. You know they need help with these points, so don’t ignore it.
- Sentinel:- Your enemies won’t be able to escape from the Monk’s clutches. Additionally, inside the area of Silence, Shadow Monks can kill their foes with the help of the Sentinel feat.
- Weapon Master:- This feat enhances the Monk’s proficiency in wielding all their necessary weapons for their proper functioning.
5E Monk Guide: Monk Weapons 5E
- Spear:- This is the best weapon a monk can wield. For instance, you can throw it at your enemy to deal him or her piercing damage. If you want to get a hit point of 1d8 damage, go with Versatile. It’s the best for a Monk until they can get 1d10 damage at the 17th level.
- Handaxe:- Slash your way out of a fight with a Handaxe and throw it at your foes. But it’s weaker than a spear or a quarterstaff. So, it’s better to stick to those weapons, unless your enemy is so weak, that you don’t need to pierce him with a spear.
- Javelin:- It’s a lot like the Spear, but as there’s no Versatile, you can’t do much damage with it. The range is much better, though.
- Quarterstaff:- You can’t throw the Quarterstaff at your foes, so, it’s not at par with the Spear. But as its damage type with Versatile is similar to the Monk’s unarmed damage till the 17th level, it’s the 2nd-best weapon a Monk can have.
- Dart:- When your Monk has the above weapons, it’s better to replace a Dart with a Javelin.
- Short Sword:- Lastly, a Spear, Javelin, or a Quarterstaff would serve the purpose of a Monk 5E much better than a Short Sword ever can.
The Monk 5E Table
Martial Arts, Unarmored Defense
Unarmored Movement, Ki
Deflect Missiles, Monastic Tradition: Way of the Open Hand
Slow Fall, Ability Score Improvement (DEX 16 - <18)
Stunning Strike, Extra Attack
Monastic Traditions: Wholeness of Body, Ki-Empowered Strikes
Stillness of Mind, Evasion
Ability Score Improvement (DEX 18 - <20)
Unarmored Movement Improvement
Purity of Body
Monastic Traditions: Tranquility
Ability Score Improvement (WIS 16 - <18)
Tongue of the Sun and Moon
Ability Score Improvement (WIS 18 - <20)
Monastic Traditions: Quivering Palm
Ability Score Improvement (CON 14 - <16)