Since the mid-1970s, board game enthusiasts have gathered to play Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson’s masterpiece, Dungeons and Dragons, with dice in hand. The game has certainly undergone some changes over the years. Since the acquisition of Wizards of the Coast, best known for Magic: The Gathering, D&D has had five different editions.
With each new edition, the mechanics and world building of the D&D universe are slightly altered. The fifth edition of Dungeons and Dragons has caused a huge surge in the game’s popularity, leaving many board game fans curious about how to pick up the dice and play this incredibly addictive game.
One of the first decisions a new D&D player has to make is the choice of class. If you’re having trouble choosing a class for your game, look no further. Check out our list below to see how each level ranks and which level is perfect for you.
List of levels of description
- Level S – These classes are extremely strong. Versatile, dominant in battle and just plain fun, these warriors are a safe choice in any situation.
- Level A – These classes are powerful, but not invincible. If you want to make sure your class doesn’t hold you back, you can’t go wrong with these symbols.
- Level B – Average, these classes are competent and reliable. While these classes are not the most powerful characters, they can still be very entertaining.
- Level C – These classes are generally considered less powerful than many of their counterparts. Still, these characters can be very useful and funny in a given situation.
- Level D – These characters are generally considered the weakest classes and are not strongly recommended for beginners.
It is important to note that every player is different. Just because a class isn’t statistically optimal for combat, doesn’t mean that class can’t provide the player with hours of incredible fun. This list of animals is purely indicative.
Read the detailed breakdown of each class below before deciding which class is best for you. If you’re interested in creating one of D&D’s top characters yourself, check out our guides here.
- The Bard – The Bard is really something special. While most D&D classes have a firm grasp on arcane or divine powers, the bard has the unique potential to have a firm grasp on many different disciplines of magic. Each bard learns magical secrets at 10th level, allowing the character to learn up to six spells from any spell list in the game. If the player chooses the legendary bard school, he may choose two non-bard spells at 6th level. This is incredibly beneficial, as the player can really customize their bard’s abilities to their group. Do you need more healing? You can choose a handful of healing spells from the cleric spell list. Do you need AoE damage? The wizard spell list is filled to the brim with damage spells. Additionally, the Bard is best at organizing the battlefield due to the large amount of weakening, suppressing, and crowd-controlling spells in his spell list, as well as the crucial advantage provided by the steady stream of inspiration dice. As if that wasn’t enough, the bard also has good use outside of combat with his class skills and knowledge. Therefore, a bard can have great success with a variety of skill checks. Ultimately, the bard is one of the most customizable and adaptable classes in the game. If you want to be useful both in and out of combat, organize every fight with magical precision, and be able to adapt to any situation, you can’t go wrong by choosing a bard. My personal bard archetypes are the College of Valor and the College of Legend.
- Fighter – When it comes to pure combat skills, no one is superior to a fighter. As for defense, the fighter has a small collection of useful skills. With a strike die of d10, the fighter has the second highest strike die in the game. Therefore, a player can reach a fairly large health maximum by putting some of his skill points into the build. In addition, the second wind and the fighter’s indomitable abilities provide minimal improvement to the well-being of the class. If you choose to neglect your fighter’s agility, your character can still wear all armor and shields. Therefore, there will never be an excuse for a low armor class when using a fighter. However, the real power of the fighter is the class’ ability to inflict incredible damage. The fighter independently learns up to four attacks per round, doubling the attack speed of any other class. But the fighter can double his attacks per turn with the Surge skill. Therefore, with the proper preparation, a fighter can knock out almost any standard opponent in one or a few rounds. My favorite fighter archetypes are the Lord of Battle and the Beast.
- Paladin – Paladins are just fun to play. The paladin has a high number of hit points (d10), giving him the second highest maximum health potential of all classes. The paladin can also wield all armor and shields. Therefore, it’s pretty easy to get a high armor class with character. The bottom line is that Paladins can be excellent tanks when needed. This means that a paladin can both cook it and eliminate it. With their combat weapons, divine defeat, extra attack per round, and spell list consisting of a number of spells, paladins are also able to move damage at the highest level. While this is already a plethora of reasons to choose a paladin, the class also has some serious healing options. The paladin’s spell list is full of useful healing spells, but the paladin’s channeled energy and lying skills really set the healer class apart from the rest. My favorite paladin archetypes are the oath of treason and the oath of submission.
- Cleric – When it comes to grooming, no class compares to clerics. This character spell list is filled with incredibly useful healing and removal spells. If your team needs more support, it’s probably best to bring in a pastor. The cleric can defend himself in battle, thanks to the class’ ability to wear medium armor and shields. Clerics, however, only have one attack per turn and are slowed somewhat by their lower number of d8 battle dice. Thus, a cleric can be turned into a quasi-tank. However, a priest will never have the tanning or damage skills of some other classes. My favorite cleric archetypes are the sphere of life and war.
- Druid – Druids can be incredibly fun to play, but also incredibly useful. The druid has a list of spells very similar to that of the priest. That’s why Druids can be great healers for your team. In addition, the Druid has many summoning spells that he can use to ward off attacks and strengthen your team. The Wild Form skill of the class adds a unique type of tanking skill only to druids. After all, a druid is capable of anything. But a druid isn’t a master of this or that trade either. The class can tank with its wild form ability and summon spell list. The class can heal, thanks to the numerous druid spells included with the cleric spell list. The druid also knows a handful of AoE damage doing spells. Finally, the druid is a fairly versatile class. The only drawback is that the druid doesn’t really know much. My favorite Druid archetypes are the moon circle and the shepherd circle.
- Warlocks – Warlocks are incredibly unique characters. Additionally, these eldritch warriors are better equipped for battle than some of their spellcasting counterparts. Wizards have a much more limited library of known spells and spell slots. However, these characters are almost always ready to use all their spells when they meet, as wizards recover their spells during a brief rest. This allows wizards to focus their spells on grinding and increase damage with each exchange. Also, the Warriors are very customizable when it comes to damage. The Pact Weapon trait makes each wizard able to do melee damage when needed. Additionally, Eldritch’s unique blend of explosive magic can provide a decent damage range up to level 20. If you’re looking for a slightly different class that offers some flexibility in terms of play style, the wizard can be an incredibly fun class. My favorite witch archetypes are the witch and the crow queen.
- Master – Particularly resourceful and creative players may want to try out the wizard class. The class lacks solid combat skills, but makes up for it with cryptic wonders. A wizard is fairly unarmed when it comes to combat weapons. With a success die of d6, the wizard has the lowest maximum health of all classes. Besides, the wizard has no armor. Therefore, of all the classes, the wizard is inherently the most defensively vulnerable. But this magician is not without surprises. The character has effective AoE damage spells. Since this is the most effective form of damage a sorcerer can inflict, the class can depend to some extent on the opponent’s disposition to inflict truly severe punishment. However, a wizard can still use cantrips like Firebolt and low-level spells like Searing Ray to deal damage to a single target. The strengths of the class lie elsewhere, of course. A wizard can excel at the utility of combat. While the skills of this class cannot match those of a bard or a thief, the wizard has a host of intriguing spells at his disposal. As a result, Wizards is best suited for advanced players looking for a challenging and imaginative Dungeons and Dragons game. My favorite wizard archetypes are the school of knives and the school of military magic.
- Barbarian – The Barbarian has the potential to be one of the most fun things to play. The character has a D12 die, the highest die in the game. Additionally, the Barbarian’s Rage skill can halve physical damage for a short time. Ultimately, the character’s massive hit dice, his rage and his indomitable defensive prowess make the Barbarian one of the greatest tanks in the Dungeons & Dragons series. Of course, a barbarian can also do a lot of damage. The barbarian gets his second attack at the fifth level. In addition, the class gets a scale bonus, a static damage bonus on anger. The barbarian’s ability to attack without mercy also gives him a class advantage when he attacks, though enemies have an advantage when they attack the barbarian as a result. After all, the barbarian is capable of being a better tank than almost any other class. Additionally, the class does enough damage to threaten a standard enemy. The class’ increased movement speed also makes the barbarian an excellent tool for getting behind enemy lines, allowing you to destroy enemy glass cannons and healers. The main disadvantage of the barbarian is that the damage it inflicts is not as great as that of the fighter or even the paladin. The barbarian is also one of the weakest of the group in terms of his usefulness outside of combat. That said, the barbarian can still be incredibly useful to the team and bring a lot of fun to the game. My favorite barbarian archetypes are Guardian Ancestor and Berserker.
- Diplomats – Diplomats are pretty unique. Instead of relying on the power of their spell, artists rely mostly on the power of their equipment. Certificates have d8 dice, which makes them vulnerable when it comes to maximum health. However, they also have medium armor and shields. Therefore, a cannoneer can be added to a tank, but the results will be less impressive than what the other classes can offer. The Artificer can also accidentally get a second attack. Of course, the actors don’t carry combat weapons, so the maximum potential to hit with a weapon isn’t as high as it could be. Nevertheless, artists can be very useful outside of combat with their many instrumental skills. In addition, the Gunner’s unique ability to lift equipment prevents it from taking damage or refueling in combat. Ultimately, an artist can be useful in almost any team composition. However, this class is less well equipped to be effective in combat or useful outside of combat than some other classes. My favorite artillery archetype is the alchemist.
- Ranger – The ranger is equipped with unique equipment to take the group to their destination. However, a ranger is not necessarily the best class to help you when you arrive at your destination. The lurker has many unique abilities that can benefit the entire party, including the party’s inability to get lost on a long trip and the ability to avoid the negative effects of difficult terrain on long trips. A peeping tom can also be an excellent scout, as this class can increase its stealth with spells like Disappear without a trace. Finally, rangers are the best scouts and guides for any group. However, Rangers have no special equipment to deal damage or find tanks in battle. Rangers wear medium armor and shields. They also have D10 dice. As a result, players of the Ranger class can learn to dance better instead of doing a lot of damage. My favorite ranger archetypes are beastmaster and hunterclav.
- Grifter – The Grifter can be a difficult class to master in combat. The class is highly mobile, as cheaters can disengage or rush as a bonus action. Villains are therefore excellent at diving behind enemy lines and pressuring the weaker members of the opposing team. Because of the rogue’s ability to hide as a bonus action, it is also highly recommended that it does not deal damage every turn. To increase the cheater’s resistance, advance at a distance to do him harm. Then retreat with an extra move before using the bonus action to hide. The cheater can’t really sunbathe, so you should use this feature as often as possible. Thanks to the Rogue’s sneak attack ability, the class is able to inflict moderate damage. However, Rogue damage is largely situational and cannot compete with the damage of some other classes. However, the Rogue’s lack of combat skills is compensated to some extent outside of combat. With his experience and reliable talent skills, the Thief is perfectly equipped to do skill checks outside of combat. Therefore, a Rogue is best suited for players who want to help in battles, but want the freedom to use their skills elsewhere if needed. My favorite thief archetypes are assassins and mysterious mages.
- Wizard – The wizard can be incredibly fun, though not as useful in combat as other classes. The wizard has a number of spells that deal AoE damage. However, the class doesn’t offer much in terms of single target damage. Therefore, a wizard’s ability to inflict damage is largely situational. With a dice of d6 and no armor or shield, the wizard is also very vulnerable defensively. However, the wizard’s unique metamagic ability gives the class a rather sublime quality of resourcefulness. In addition, players who choose the divine soul archetype also have many healing spells at their disposal. This course is not offered to new players, but more experienced players looking for a little more challenge and a more inventive style of play will likely enjoy this course. My favorite witchcraft archetypes are stone witchcraft and divine soul.
- Monk – The monk is a fairly interesting class, but not very useful. The monk is highly mobile, as the class gains an additional 10 meter range to level 20, and can use his Walking Wind skill as a bonus action. Therefore, Monk is best suited as a gorilla fighter. Engage in combat from a distance, deal damage, then use wind step to break free and dodge the action. Players can also use the monk’s impressive mobility to jump behind enemy lines and put pressure on weaker members of the enemy forces. The problem with all these strategies, however, is that Monk is not particularly good at tanking or doing damage. The monk only has d8 hit points, and is probably more useful without a shield. Therefore, the player must lose a lot of skill points in physics if he wants to be able to dance. Moreover, monks can only wield simple weapons and short swords. There are ways around this, but most Monk builds rely on scaling damage from unarmed weapons, which is unique to this class. With the Burst of Blows skill, a monk can perform up to four attacks per turn in a short period of time. However, an unarmed monk cannot benefit from damage boosting feats such as Sharpshooter or Great Weapon Master. Monks also cannot improve their damage with paladin spells like Blacksmith’s Banishment or improve their arcane abilities with arcane spells like Mirror. As such, monks are not effective tanks, nor are they really effective damage dealers. As a monk, the player can easily move around the battlefield. However, the player must be creative if they want to bring value to the fight. My favorite monastic archetypes are the way of silence and the way of the open hand.
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