Hello adventurers of all shapes and sizes! Welcome to my spellbook and thank you so much for checking out the second part of our race series. We did the dragonborn like few days ago. We’re gonna be tackling the race in more or less kind of chronological order from release we’re gonna be starting with the core rule book and then branching out from there and alphabetically outside of that.
So what i’m thinking is do either one race or one sub-race a day and we should be done relatively quickly all things considered a lot of will be stuff you already know but to those new players i think it’ll make learning the game a lot easier for them. So Without further ado let’s talk about the dwarf dnd 5e here.
So dwarves are very very well represented in most fantasy geners. Lord of the rings made them really popular with gimli. Even games like skyrim kind of made the dwarfs super popular although they’re not really in skyrim it’s really weird with the dwemer and everything else, doesn’t really pertain to 5e but.
In terms of dungeons & dragons as a whole dwarfs have beean a staple for certainly longer than i’ve been alive to be fair so a while now. Now let’s dive into their naming convenstions first and foremost. You’ll know i actually have some pretty strong thoughts about names, please for the love of all that is good in this world make them easy to pronounce.
The dwarven names aren’t too bad for this but elvish names for whatever silly reason they either sound ridiculously similar to one another or they’re very hard to pronounce, i don’t know just make it so they’re easy to pronounce that’s my rule of thumb. I got some examples for dnd 5e dwarf names here.
Male Names: For the male names “Adrik, Alberich, Baern, Barendd, Brottor, Bruenor, Dain, Darrak, Delg, Eberk, Einkil, Fargrim, Flint, Gardain, Harbek”. And it just strong sounding names throw very clear distinct syllables in there very similar to the dragonborn.
Female Names: The female names very similar as well “Amber, Artin, Audhild, Bardryn, Dagnal, Diesa, Eldeth, Falkrunn, Finellen, Gunnloda, Gurdis, Helja, Hlin, Kathra.”
Clan Names: The clan’s names for the last name things like “balderk, battlehammer, brawnanvil, dankil, fireforge, frostbeard, gorunn, holderhek, ironfist.” Do it whatever you want make it sound cool just easy to pronounce. Now let’s take a look at some other traits.
So in terms of age they mature at the same rate as humans but other dwarves and other long-lived species will consider them young until they reach about the age of 50 and they live of 350 years give or take. Needless to say they’re one of the more long-lived races in d&d and in most fantasy genres as well.
You can really play this into your character what this lets you do is it lets you have a character that has a very long life span and a huge breath of knowledge but it is still capable of going through the kind of aches and pains associated with adventuring with relatively little problems so the dnd dwarf age really isn’t a huge constraint unless you’re playing a 349 year dwarf and i’m sure there’s a lot of role play opportunity that comes with that.
However i haven’t seen it happen and i’ve played in quite a few games so. I don’t know if you want to go for it. Let me know how it goes down beneath, i’m always curious for that kind of stuff.
In terms of dnd 5e dwarf size between four and five feet tall and they’re an average of about 150 pounds and your size is considered medium. It’s pretty well known dwarves are short and stocky, not super surprising i suppose you could increase that weight by however much you wanted kind of like what they did with the hobbit trilogy i forget the one dwarf snail. He’s quite large so you could do something like that i suppose.
And alignment i debated putting this in i’m gonna roll with it just because the book mentions it but alignment is an optional rule you don’t have to use it. But this kind of makes sense. So dwarves are most most worlds are lawful believing firmly in the benefits of a well-ordered society and they tend towards good as well.
The order part for me makes a lot of sense. If you look at how most dwarven societies are depicted the dwarfs are primarily craftsmen and they size each other up, not just based off of the breadth of their experience but on the quality of their craft as well.
So that kind of society with that kind of well-ordered almost meritocracy and more senses than not. It makes sense that they would be lawful as a direct result of that. In terms of the tending towards good, i feel like dwarves would have an inclination to be greedy, very similar to the lord of the rings in the bell rug right! They dug too deep and they’ve discovered something that probably shouldn’t have.
So you might want to play that in your character as well, however i feel like your background would be a far better place to source that kind of backstory and that kind of a character defect, but ultimately it is of course your choice as the creator. Now let’s take a look at some mechanics here.
So the dwarves get a plus two constitution which is absolutely great. There really isn’t a reason to not want constitution, casters really benefit from it because it goes a long way towards concentration and of course your martial classes really benefit from it. Just due to the fact that it increases their total health pool and helps them out with a lot of saves right!
Their speed is 25 feet and that is walking of course and a lot of people look down on that. Anything less than 30 feet is kind of viewed as sub-optimal and there’s a little bit of truth to that you can bridge that gap pretty quickly with a few class features and even a couple feats as well.
However the cool thing about the dwarven movement is that it is not reduced by heavy armor. So if the armor has a number attached to it in terms of the strength you need whether it’s 13, 16 whatever and you don it without having that strength requirement, there’s a movement penalty imposed on you if memory serves it’s 10 feet.
Which is honestly something i personally always forget about, reason being i don’t play a lot of martial classes like at all i’m almost strictly a spellcaster that’s why i started the website in the first place. But regardless it’s very cool that they don’t have to worry about that. So you could potentially wear some armor you probably shoudn’t be able to. There would be more than likely some other downsides to doing that but it is possible and it’s really interesting that they get that.
In terms of languages you have the ability to speak, read, write common and dwarvish which makes sense. You do have darkvision as well which once again makes a lot of sense. Most depictions of dwarves have them mining or living within mountains things of that nature. So it makes sense that they’d adapt.
So it’s upto 60 feet you see dim light as if it was bright light and a darkness as if it was dim light. Now if you’re looking in darkness however you can’t see colors, you can only see in black and white. Usually it doesn’t factor into the game but it’s still worth bringing up just in case the DM has a puzzle involving colors.
Now let’s take a look at their other traits and they do have a few and i’ve something to bring up about one of them in particular but let’s dive into it.
So first off we have dwarven resistance which gives them advantage on saves against poison and resistance against poison damage. This is super useful especially early on in the campaign you’ll see a lot of beasts in particular namely the insects, they almost all do poison damage and even some of the rats will inflict the poison condition on you. So it’s really good to be able to deal with that and it might help improve your tankiness and overall survivability.
Now you also get access to dwarven and combat training so you have proficiency with the battle axe, hand axe, light hammer and the warhammer. And this is regardless of which class you go with, so even if you’re playing a caster and for whatever reason you run into spellslots or spells aren’t super effective against something you do have an extra set of abilities to fall back on just in case.
Under tool proficiency you get to pick a proficiency with simithing tools, brewer’s supplies or mason’s tools. Now in terms of which one’s better than the other it honestly all depends on your campaign, all depends on the DM and all depends on just your character in general.
However personally i find smith’s tools are always a solid bet for the martial classes and maybe mason tools for the sneakier builds like assassins for example. If you can remove a kystone from a bridge or something along those lines calling causing it to collapse. That’d be a pretty cool use for it.
Under brewer supplies and bard’s the first thing that comes to mind just because you know alcohol and all that good stuff. Along the alcohol concept you can really play into over consuming because you have advantage on those poison saves right! and you have a boost to con which is really nice too. So it’ll put you in a little bit of an advantage should you find yourself in a drinking contest.
However my favorite trait the dwarves get and the one i see almost no one uses which is just baffling to me because there’s so many cool opportunities for it. It’s stone cunning…haven’t heard of it! ran over it! probably it’s not one i see actively discussed a whole lot. It’s one i like to play into though and i’ll tell you why in a little bit.
So if you’re unfamiliar stone cunning whenever you make a history check regarding to really anything stone related, you have double proficiency with it. So if you’re just starting out your proficiency bonus is two and then you just double it. It basically gives you expertise in it. Which is really cool, because it makes you roll a lot higher obviously.
But when are you gonna need to look into stonework you know, if you’re tracking something in a dungeon or in a castle or you’re trying to detect traps in stone walls or anything along those lines. This is super applicable for, i really like it. I have one campaign that involves a demon kind of living within the walls and someone made a stone cunning check regarding that.
I basically revealed the bbeg kind of technically. They didn’t really pickup my hints but i was about as clear as i could have been without outright saying there’s a demon living in these walls you know. Like i described how the stones have slight traces of sulfur and show signs of charring and decaying and stuff like that, but they didn’t really pick up on it.
I don’t know adventurously is a weird place guys. That being said! that’s about it for the dwarves. Now let me give you my personal thoughts before i let you go here.
It’s gonna be worth noting outright, the dwarves have access to one of the cooler feats in the game it’s called dwarven fortitude so i have an article explaining it in the feats series. So it increases your constitution score by one and whenever you take the dodge action you can use a hit die to heal yourself.
Which if you factor in the out of combat implications of that where you can just take the dodge action on repeat basically. You can heal yourself completely without even taking a short rest. That feat with barbarian they also have access to unique barbarian subclass but i don’t know i’ve never met anyone who’s taken it sadly, i think i had a buddy who played with a gentleman in a one shot but it’s called path of the battle rager, it’s got some really cool stuff check out the barbarian playlist for that but overall they’re just cool.
They’re cool, they’re fun to play as they’re one of the most popular choices in 5e and with good reason they have a lot of benefits and really no downsides. You can make an argument their speed isn’t all that great, you can make an argument that they’re kind of plain but you know they got a lot of interesting implications for them.
DnD 5E Dwarf Subraces
That being said! Let me know what you think of the dwarves down beneath in the comment section. And because i know you’re gonna ask in terms of what is the best class for a dwarf d&d? Honestly almost all of them would be fine, they just have plus two constitution right, so it’s not like there’s any class in particular that wouldn’t benefit from constitution you know!
I mean maybe if you were playing a ranged character, you wouldn’t need an abundance of constitution so yeah but even i don’t know it’s all kind of up to interpretation i suppose and play style but overall they’ll work fine with just about anything.
That being said! If you disagree let me know down beneath in the comment section. Also mention any thoughts, questions, comments, concerns or just cool stories you have involving your dwarf. That being said, i hope you have a wonderful day and of course happy adventuring everyone.