Recently updated on December 27th, 2022 at 05:35 pm
Wondering how to get weapon proficiency in DnD 5E? If so, I’ve created the perfect guide for you. I’ve broken down D&D weapon proficiency into everything from what it is to how it can be best utilized in role play scenarios. Having said that, let’s get started!
Table of Contents
- What is Weapon Proficiency in DnD?
- How to Gain Weapon Proficiency in DnD 5E
- Using Weapon Proficiency in Combat
- Roleplaying and Character Development
- Are There Backgrounds That Give Weapon Proficiency?
What is Weapon Proficiency in DnD?
In the mechanics of Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition, weapon proficiency is a measure of a character’s ability to use certain types of weapons effectively. A character’s proficiency in a weapon is represented by a bonus to their attack and damage rolls when using that weapon. This bonus is determined by the character’s class, race, and background, and can vary depending on the type of weapon. For example, a fighter class character will typically have proficiency in all martial weapons, while a rogue class character might have proficiency in simple weapons and finesse weapons.
There are several different types of weapon proficiencies in D&D 5e, each with their own benefits and limitations. The main categories of weapon proficiencies are simple weapons, martial weapons, and exotic weapons. Simple weapons are the most basic weapons, such as clubs, daggers, and slings, and can be used by any character with proficiency in them. Martial weapons are more advanced weapons, such as swords, axes, and bows, and are typically associated with fighters and other martial classes. Exotic weapons are rare and unusual weapons, such as whips, nets, and glaives, and require special proficiency to use effectively.
In addition to these broad categories, there are also specific proficiencies for different types of weapons within each category. For example, a character can have proficiency in swords, which would allow them to use all types of swords, such as longswords and rapiers. They can also have proficiency in specific types of swords, such as longswords or rapiers, which would give them a bonus to attack and damage rolls when using those weapons.
It’s important for a character to choose their weapon proficiencies wisely because proficiency in a weapon is a limited resource. Most classes only have proficiency in a few types of weapons, and gaining proficiency in additional weapons requires spending feats or multiclassing. This means that a character needs to carefully consider which weapons will be most useful for their playstyle and the challenges they will face in the game. It’s generally not worth it for a character to have proficiency in weapons that they won’t use often, as it will limit their ability to gain proficiency in other, more useful weapons.
How to Gain Weapon Proficiency in DnD 5E
There are several different ways that a character can gain weapon proficiency. The most common way is through a character’s class abilities. Most classes have proficiency in certain weapons, as determined by their class and background. For example, a fighter class character will typically have proficiency in all martial weapons, while a rogue class character might have proficiency in simple weapons and finesse weapons.
When deciding whether to gain weapon proficiency through class abilities, feats, training, or multiclassing, it’s important to consider your character’s overall goals and playstyle. Each option has its own benefits and drawbacks, and the best choice will depend on your character’s specific needs and situation. For example, if your character needs proficiency in a specific weapon for a specific situation, taking a feat might be the best option. However, if your character needs a broader range of weapon proficiencies, multiclassing or training might be a better choice. It’s important to carefully weigh the pros and cons of each option and choose the one that will be most beneficial for your character.
D&D Weapon Proficiency in the Character Creation Process
When choosing weapon proficiencies during character creation in Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition, it’s important to consider your character’s class, race, and background. Each of these factors determines which weapons your character will automatically have proficiency in, and can provide opportunities to gain additional proficiencies through feats or multiclassing. For example, a fighter class character will automatically have proficiency in all martial weapons, while a rogue class character will have proficiency in simple weapons and finesse weapons.
Some races also have natural proficiency in certain weapons. For example, dwarves have proficiency in battleaxes and hammers, while elves have proficiency in longswords and shortswords. These racial proficiencies can be a good starting point for choosing additional weapon proficiencies, as they can help to round out your character and make them feel more true to their race.
Your character’s background can also provide opportunities for weapon proficiency. For example, a character with a soldier background might have proficiency in martial weapons, while a character with a criminal background might have proficiency in simple weapons and finesse weapons. You can use your character’s background and backstory to justify their weapon proficiency choices and make them feel more well-rounded and believable.
It’s also important to balance your character’s weapon proficiencies with their other abilities and skills. Having proficiency in a wide variety of weapons can be useful in certain situations, but it can also spread your character’s abilities too thin and make them less effective in combat. It’s generally better to choose a few weapon proficiencies that complement your character’s other abilities and focus on improving those. For example, if your character is a spellcaster, it might be more useful for them to have proficiency in a simple weapon that they can use to defend themselves in close combat, rather than trying to gain proficiency in a variety of martial weapons.
D&D Feats That Provide Weapon Proficiency
Another way that a character can gain weapon proficiency is through feats. Feats are special abilities that a character can choose at certain levels, and some of them grant proficiency in specific weapons or weapon groups.
For example, the Crossbow Expert feat grants proficiency in crossbows, while the Great Weapon Master feat grants proficiency in heavy weapons. Feats can be a good way to gain proficiency in specific weapons that your character’s class doesn’t normally have access to.
Here’s a list of feats that give you weapon proficiency in D&D:
- Weapon Master
- Martial Weapon Proficiency
- Crossbow Expert
- Great Weapon Master
D&D Classes That Offer Weapon Proficiency
Multiclassing is another option for gaining weapon proficiency. When a character multiclasses, they gain some of the abilities and proficiencies of a different class. This can allow them to gain proficiency in weapons that they wouldn’t normally have access to. For example, a wizard who multiclasses into fighter can gain proficiency in martial weapons. However, multiclassing can also be limiting in other ways, as it reduces the character’s ability to advance in their primary class and gain access to its abilities and spells.
Here are the basic options for you to consider:
- Hexblade Warlock
Other Ways to Get Weapon Proficiency in D&D
Training is another way that a character can gain weapon proficiency. In the game world, training involves spending time and resources to learn how to use a weapon effectively. This can be represented by spending in-game money to hire a trainer, or by spending time and resources to practice with a weapon on your own. Training can be a good way to gain proficiency in weapons that your character’s class and feats don’t cover, but it can also be expensive and time-consuming.
Using Weapon Proficiency in Combat
Weapon proficiency has a direct effect on a character’s combat abilities. When a character has proficiency in a weapon, they gain a bonus to their attack and damage rolls when using that weapon. This bonus is determined by the character’s class, race, and background, and can vary depending on the type of weapon. For example, a fighter class character will typically have a higher bonus to attack and damage rolls with martial weapons than a rogue class character.
Having proficiency in a weapon also allows a character to use special abilities and techniques associated with that weapon. For example, a character with proficiency in martial weapons can perform special maneuvers like disarming an opponent or grappling them. These abilities can give a character an edge in combat and allow them to overcome difficult challenges.
When fighting with different weapon types, it’s important to use tactics that take advantage of your character’s proficiency. For example, if your character has proficiency in ranged weapons, you might want to position them at a distance from the enemy and use ranged attacks to keep them at bay. If your character has proficiency in finesse weapons, you might want to use hit-and-run tactics to avoid taking damage and keep the enemy off balance. In general, it’s best to use tactics that allow your character to make the most of their proficiency and take advantage of their strengths.
Weapon proficiency can also be used in combination with other abilities and spells to create a well-rounded and effective combatant. For example, a character with proficiency in martial weapons and access to spells like fireball or lightning bolt can use their weapon to close the distance with the enemy and then use their spells to deal devastating damage. Similarly, a character with proficiency in finesse weapons and access to spells like invisibility or haste can use their spells to gain an advantage and then use their weapons to deliver precise and deadly strikes. In general, it’s best to use your character’s proficiency and other abilities in combination to create a versatile and effective combatant.
Roleplaying and Character Development
Weapon proficiency can play a role in a character’s backstory and roleplaying. A character’s proficiency in weapons can provide insight into their background and training, and can help to define their identity as a fighter or adventurer. For example, a character with proficiency in simple weapons might be a farmer or tradesman who has learned to defend themselves with everyday tools, while a character with proficiency in martial weapons might be a trained soldier or knight.
When creating a character’s backstory and personality, it’s important to consider their weapon proficiency choices and how they fit into the larger context of the character. For example, if your character has proficiency in a specific type of weapon, you might want to think about why they chose that weapon and how it fits into their background and personality. Did they learn to use the weapon from a mentor or teacher? Did they develop an interest in it on their own? Does the weapon have special significance to them?
You can also use your character’s proficiency choices to help justify their other abilities and skills. For example, if your character has proficiency in martial weapons and a high Strength score, you might want to think about how they developed their physical strength and combat prowess. Did they train in a martial art or fighting style? Did they spend time in the military or as a bodyguard? Did they grow up in a violent or dangerous environment?
As your character progresses in level and gains new proficiencies, you can use those new abilities to develop your character and make them feel more well-rounded and believable. For example, if your character starts out with proficiency in simple weapons and then gains proficiency in martial weapons, you might want to think about how they acquired that proficiency and how it fits into their background and personality. Did they receive formal training from a mentor or teacher? Did they learn on their own through practice and experimentation? Did they gain the proficiency through multiclassing or feats?
In general, it’s important to develop your character in a way that is true to their class, background, and personality, and to use their weapon proficiency choices to support and enhance those aspects of their character. By considering how your character’s proficiency fits into their backstory and personality, you can create a character that feels well-defined and believable, and that is fun and rewarding to play.
Are There Backgrounds That Give Weapon Proficiency?
Unfortunately, no, there are no D&D backgrounds that give weapon proficiency. There are plenty of other options that can, though!
Weapon proficiency is a great way to diversify your character, as well as give them a unique advantage in combat.
Additional D&D Guides to Consider:
- Synaptic Static 5E Guide
- Aura of Vitality 5E Guide
- Enhance Ability 5e Guide
- Kinetic Jaunt 5E Guide
- Borrowed Knowledge 5E Guide
Hey there, I’m Alexander King and I’ve been playing video games and RPGs for years!
While playing, I found that there’s so much information that’s difficult to find in this space; I created The Daily RPG to make that information a click away. So follow along for RPG guides, tips and walkthroughs, product recommendations, and more!