Savior of nerds and geeks everywhere for decades, Dungeons and Dragons has been enjoying a nice surge in popularity lately. Dungeons And Dragons is a unique game that puts the players in charge and allows them to make their own story. You want to go fight dragons and plunder villages with your friends? Go ahead. Do you want to be able to shapeshift into any animal? You got it. You want to become a pirate and amass great riches and fight a Kraken? This is the place for you. The joy of creating hilarious and perilous situations with your friends can create wonderful memories for you all. While it is weird that a multi-day journey can take five minutes and a five-minute battle can take multiple hours, it is still a great experience.
I will confess, as of the writing of this article, I have yet to play a game. There has never been a Dungeons and Dragons group near me that I can play with. It is only in the last couple of weeks that I have managed to get a group together. We are currently in the ‘build your character’ stage of the process and will have our first official game in a couple of days. I am super excited to put my knowledge to the test. Because, while I have not been able to play, I have been reading up on it casually, especially now that I am making my character (who is a rogue pirate forest gnome, in case you were interested). Read this and let me know who your characters are on Twitter.
30 Worthless: Anchorites Are Willingly Trapped To One Place (3.5)
In a game all about adventuring, willingly chaining yourself to one place seems counterintuitive. Anchorites can only stay within 100 feet of their chosen place and can only leave through complex means for 24 hours maximum. If they do not return within the allotted time, they will lose levels. If they do make it back in time, the Anchorite then must stay in their anchored place for the same amount of time they were away. Sure Anchorites can astral project and have supernatural knowledge, but that is useless to an adventuring group, proxy or no.
29 Worthless: Barbarians Are Too Simple (5)
Being rage-y and instinctual can be beneficial short term, but just sound tiring long term. You cannot do anything that requires actual concentration and cognitive thought while raging and you have to fight while raging. The bonuses you get just aren’t that great compared to ones given to other classes. Honestly, it is not complex being a barbarian and it sounds exhausting having to play someone so imposing and angry all the time.
28 Powerful: Rogues Are Challenging And Varied
Rogues are as important to the Dungeons and Dragons game as Bards. What makes rogues so fun to play is that you are the sneaky ninja in the darkness, ready to strike before the fight even starts. What adds extra fun is that each sub-level of rogue is so completely different and can completely alter how you play. It is challenging and can require support, but if you plan how you want your character to be, you will be fine.
27 Worthless: Monks Are Very Likely To Be Squishies (5)
It’s not that monks are boring to play in the fifth edition, it’s just that they don’t really leave much of an impression. They just seem kind of average and not really all that exciting to play. This edition also means that it is really easy to become squishy which really hurts your party’s progress and chances of survival. For someone who can do incredible things thanks to discipline and hard work, this does not do it justice.
26 Worthless: Forsakers Are ‘Edgy’ Teens (3)
When you enter a world of fantasy and magic, do you not want to use magic if you can? It seems that some people don’t and would rather just fight normally. Forsakers actively rebel against magic and do not use it, which is a problem in a game so reliant on magical ability. It is an active hindrance to your team in many cases to pick this class. Sure, Forsakers can use magic, they just choose not to because they don’t want to rely on petty items and become weak, but it’s dumb in this kind of world.
25 Powerful: Sorcerers Are Better Wizards
Unlike wizards, sorcerers’ magical gifts are in their very being. They require no books or tomes, they just go off instinct. They also often come with interesting backstories; draconic or giant blood, touched by a fae, experimented on by a lich. All of these backstories are great, and you can decide if you chose the power or if the power chose you, giving you options for good and evil intentions. Sorcerers are cooler than wizards for these reasons, to be honest.
24 Worthless: Paladins Are Too Stiff (3.5)
While taking an oath and living by a certain code sounds great, it is severely limiting for your character and your party as a whole. Nobody wants to fight with their fellow party members over what to do just because their character has a problem with some nit-picky details. This really becomes a problem with evil or chaotic characters and those are often the fun ones to play in this game. Paladins are too stiff for their own good.
23 Worthless: Vigilante Justice Is Out Of Place (3)
Were you really into superheroes as a kid (or kid at heart)? Does the idea of fighting crime and saving people make your heart race? Then the vigilante is for you. However, they aren’t that great. They can’t use much magic, they can’t use armor or shields of any kind, and it seems weird to have a superhero in a medieval setting. Sure, they can detect evil and you can smite people, but that doesn’t mean much on an adventure.
22 Powerful: Paladins Have Access To Higher Power
Bound by oaths to higher powers, Paladins are dedicated to serving the forces of good and fighting evil. They are not only proficient in martial arts and weaponry, but also wield insane magical abilities that can heal and damage. For those who want to fight evil with more oomph than the vigilante can provide, a paladin can be a good choice for the discerning Dungeons and Dragons player. Just stick to your oaths and you’ll be fine.
21 Worthless: Monks Are Slow (3)
The problem with the monk class in the third edition is its heavy reliance on good quality stats. Of course, stats are crucial to every character regardless of class. However, if you do not get high scores on Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, and Wisdom then you may as well pick something else. The abilities you get higher up in terms of magic are often known by wizards or clerics in your party by the time you get them, and the Base Attack Bonus is way too slow.
20 Worthless: Pacifists Put You In Danger (2)
While it is true that violence is not always the answer, it is a lot of the time in Dungeons and Dragons. You are going to face an ambush or attack at some point in the game, usually more than once, and having someone who refuses to fight is an active hindrance to your party. It is noble to want to use brains over brawn and to try to resolve things another way, but sometimes throwing hands is the only way people will listen.
19 Powerful: Bards Add Banter And Support
Bards are a fun class to play. They can regale you with ‘Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend’ over and over again or help you out of tough situations with their friendly natures. They are a massive support to the entire party and help them deal more damage. Bards can also wield rapiers and magical abilities that are incredibly helpful. People tend to write off bards as a meme or easy class, but there is a reason they are a staple of the game.
18 Worthless: Truenamers Have Broken Mechanics (3.5)
The rules do not support truenamers at all. Not only that, but they require a lot of optimization to even be considered playable. They are incapable of doing one particular thing very well. Truenamers also do not have weapon or armor proficiencies, meaning that they can contribute absolutely nothing to combat situations. This is a class that seems cool on the surface but are a pain in the behind when you start playing and get down to brass tacks.
17 Worthless: Cavalier (1)
A simple mounted warrior in the service of good, Cavaliers were pretty bland in the first edition of Dungeons and Dragons. They are an attempt to bring mounted knights into the picture. However, the reality is that every brawl becomes a hot mess as the cavalier has to rush to the biggest fighter and fight them in a reckless charge. It is ridiculous and does not allow for stealth attacks, tactics or any real planning, which is immediately exploitable by a DM.
16 Powerful: Druids Are Nature Wizards
Druids are pretty awesome; they can use healing spells, carry shields, use weapons, and can wear medium armor. Not only that, but they can also transform into various animals and who is not into that cool ability. I mean, if you could be an eagle or a wolf, would you not want to be that? Sure, you can’t use metal objects or weapons but that is fine when you have claws and teeth sharper than daggers. Too bad you have to transform out of your beast form though.
15 Worthless: Druids Got Nerfed (3)
I know I literally just talked about how cool druids are, but they weren’t so cool in the third editions of the game. Wearing metal armour is punished with not being able to cast spells or transform into your animal form for 24 hours. The alignment restriction is so tight that you cannot do anything outside of your personality alignment, which can be one of the very few things. Also, you can only turn into one kind of animal, which is so lame.
14 Worthless: Thief (2)
The big problem with the early version of the thief was their abilities were easily copied by low-level spells. Any low-level magic user could detect traps or sense things pretty easily, meaning that thieves were actually useless to the point that they may as well not be there. This was improved upon in later versions with rogues and such, but this is a painful reminder to make sure you test everything extra thoroughly before release when making games.
13 Powerful: Fighters Kick Behind (And Do It Well)
I once saw fighters be described as Swiss Army Knives of combat characters and I thought that this was a very appropriate description. They are very good at fighting and make excellent mercenaries or soldiers. Making money is a higher calling, but not always. Having one of these bad boys in your party is essential if you are planning on going into dangerous territories and getting into trouble. However, if you want to fight unarmed, be a monk instead.
12 Worthless: Sorcerers Are Less Useful Wizards (5)
In a campaign party, sorcerers can often feel worthless alongside other companions who have access to better spells and skills. I know I said that sorcerers are better than wizards earlier, but that is not always the case in the fifth edition of the game. Wizards can do what sorcerers do, but better. Also, while some would argue that the sorcerer has good multiclass options, it can be easy to get cold feet looking at the wizard class when making your character.
11 Worthless: Candlecasters Are Terribly Impractical (3)
Candlecaster was never given a 3.5 update and I am not surprised because it is terrible. Binding spells to candles so anyone can use them sounds cool but is so impractical in practice. Once lit, it won’t use magic till the next turn. If your candle is extinguished before the spell goes off, then boo hoo no spell for you. It is a pain in the behind to have to rely on such a flimsy thing to cast spells rather than your own innate ability.
10 Powerful: Warlock Pacts Are Hilarious
Making a pact with a powerful entity to gain power and influence sounds exciting. Part of the fun of warlocks, besides their powers, is picking their backstory. Who were they before they made the pact? Who is their deity of choice? Why do they think that this is a good idea? What did they get in exchange for the pact? While the obvious answer would be their soul in exchange for cookies, there are all kinds of interesting lore titbits you can throw in there to spice things up.
9 Worthless: Soulknives Aren’t That Great (3.5)
While in theory harnessing the power of your soul into a powerful crowd control weapon is cool, in practice, it is a pain. You are most powerful with one weapon and without it, you are a bit useless. The best you can do is upgrade your weapon to make it a bit more okay. In a world where you can breathe fire and control the deceased, a sword similar to ones from Blue Exorcist seem a bit bland in comparison.
8 Worthless: Rangers Get No Benefits (3)
Leveling up means absolutely nothing to rangers in the third edition of the game. You gain absolutely nothing from it and it does not give you many benefits, let alone ones that are actually worthwhile. A handful of spells and minimal bonuses are all you have to show for your effort and hard work. The ambidexterity and Two-Weapon fighting feats were the only reason to even consider ranger in the first place in this version.
7 Powerful: Clerics Have Gods On Their Side
Serving their deity and looking cool doing it is the name of the game for clerics. They serve a higher power and live their lives according to their calling. My personal favorite kind of cleric is the trickster cleric as they are disruptive forces, unlike the goody two shoes people usually think of when they think about clerics. You can also mess around with the undead which is a pretty neat feature if I do say so myself.
6 Worthless: Druids Don’t Scale Well (5)
There are a lot of rules placed on you when you transform into your best form as a druid, which can be a pain when you just want to kick behind as a bear. There are some cool spells, but not as many as you can get in other editions. Also, scaling your best form is a pain and soon you just won’t need to transform when you have stronger abilities. Sure, your shapeshifting can be powerful, but it will not be as powerful as other abilities after a certain point.
5 Worthless: Rogue (5)
Your team really have to be patient to work with you in this version. Party members will often have to wait on you to let you go in and find that perfect spot before they can even do any real moves on their part. Not only that, but you always have to lone wolf it and split off from the pack or make them wait around quietly while you do your own thing which is not always fun for your friends as they sit around waiting for you.
4 Powerful: Necromancers Are Gravely Dangerous
Come on, having mastery over the undead and having the ability to reanimate bodies is the ultimate form of entertainment for anyone into zombie films and games. Imagine being able to lay waste to cities with a zombie army. Or what about using your enemies’ fallen warriors against them. Sure, it can seem wrong to mess with the bodies of the fallen, but sometimes you have to fight fire with fire (or in this case lifeless with lifeless).
3 Worthless: Rangers Are Inflexible (5)
Defending villages and borders from horrific beasts and monsters sound cool, but there are downsides to being a ranger. Players across the globe have been dissatisfied with the ranger’s weakness and were often regarded as the weakest class in Dungeons and Dragons. The class is also pretty inflexible, which can clash with your party and be frustrating at the best of times. It has been revised in the past, but this version is definitely not the best iteration of the ranger.
2 Powerful: Monks Are Basically Benders
Anyone who was into Avatar: The Last Airbender or Avatar: The Legend Of Korra will be fans of the monk class. With a monk character, you can basically become a warrior, a ninja, or a bender which is a totally awesome idea. They are calm but powerful beings who rely on the discipline of their minds and draw power from that and their beliefs. I personally always loved Katara’s water bending abilities and would be down to have them IRL.
1 Worthless: Warlocks Are Super Restricted (5)
This edition brings a more focused set of options to use more often which can bug certain players. Resting for long periods gets you punished and running out of spells and the usual bells and whistles leave you with Eldritch Blast. Eldritch Blast is fine, but spamming it is not utilizing your character’s full potential. Also, it’s weird that its best abilities are the low-level ones rather than the high-level ones, in what world does leveling up give you worse abilities?