D&D: Best Race for Every Class

D&D Best Race
Elven rangers are a common sight in the D&D universe.

What's The Best D&D Race for You?

The 5th Edition of Dungeons and Dragons has introduced some fabulous chances to play different races as Player Characters. 

Monsters who previously had room only as NPCs, now can become part of the adventure permanently and become the star of the show. That is perfectly progressive, and so, to celebrate this racial diversity, I present to you my choices for the best race to be played for every class in D&D.

Please note that I am not including multi-class or specialist classes, only the basic ones.  Please also note that I am using all the expansion races. 

In my search for the best combos of race/class, I found a great deal of debate and very few facts, so these combos are based, in part on game mechanics, but mostly on my own opinion.  Also, in 5e, Humans are the most advantageous race of all with a +1 on all their statistics.

So I am not discussing why humans are the best race to play. That. Is. Boring. Instead, I've arranged the combos from most popular to least popular class, as determined by the D&D Beyond list of most popular character classes and races.

1.  Fighter 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Goliath or Dwarf 

Fighters are the shock troops of Dungeons and Dragons. Neither particularly intelligent, nor skilled in other tasks, fighters are experts in all types of combat, and their entire lives are lived in the perfection of their craft. Their job is to kill and kill quickly, but they must also be able to follow orders and work in large armies. 

My choice:  With +2 Strength, +1 Constitution and Stone´s endurance make Goliaths great fighters. Goliaths are a giant-race who live in the mountains and rocky hills, and who are highly competitive. As such, a Goliath fighter not only has natural benefits, which are highly useful but also a strong drive to become the "best" fighter among his kin. Their lawful natures make them excellent team players, another important skill for a good fighter.  

2.   Rogue 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Halfling or Kenku

Rogues usually live off the rich in large cities. They are the thieves and cutpurses who plague every large metropolis, using stealth and skullduggery to achieve their nefarious goals. A life of thievery is not something that people do willingly. It is usually the sign of a hard life since childhood. 

My choice: With +2 Dexterity and +1 Wisdom, natural mimicry and expert forgery make them the best thieves. The Kenku were cursed to become flightless, and for that reason, they have tended to turn toward evil, and roguery, although good kenku are also known. Cunning, stealthful and not fond of combat, Kenku are the perfect assassin, always seeking the best approach for a quick kill. 

3. Wizard 

Best Stat Based Choice:  Human, Gnome, or Elf

Wizards dedicate their lives and energy to the study of arcane skills and all manner of magic. Wizards can cast powerful spells, and illusions to break almost all the rules of ordinary reality. They need to spend long hours of study and search for special tomes and scrolls to learn their spells. 

My choice: Gnomes are the absolute best wizard because they are not very powerful physically, but have enormous intellects (+2 intelligence) and Gnome Cunning that allow for a huge encyclopedic lore in all manner of magical matters. They also have a natural curiosity that makes them tinkers and great scholars. 

4. Barbarian 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Half-Orc,  or Lizardfolk 

Barbarians are people of the wild, who disdain "civilization" and its benefits in exchange for a deep connection with their environment and a physical prowess that most civilized people can't ever really achieve. The "savages" tend to be people who live short, brutish lives, but their ability to survive extreme situations, especially when doing so in their own lands gives them a strong advantage over those who have lived more sheltered lives.

My choice: Lizardfolk make the best barbarians with a because they have natural benefits like a Bite, natural armor, Hunter's Lore and Hold Breath prefer to live in swamps and forests, far from civilization, and their level of sophistication is never much more above that of reptiles. But their innate reptilian abilities make them perfectly suited for their savage lives wherever they might originate from.  

5.  Bard  


 
Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Half-Elf or Aasimar

Bards are the ancient story-tellers and musicians who carry the lore, entertain, and amuse people with their musical and oratory skills. They were also the trumpet-bearers who led troops into battle with their tunes. It is said that Merlin the magician was first and foremost a great Bard, an in our day and age, Bards are our rock-stars, and rappers, who determine much of what popular culture is all about.

Half-Elves are the best possible bards because they come from the two most important civilizations in all the Realms, the ancient, very long-loved and magically-inclined Elves and Humans, who although live but for a short time, have the largest and most powerful cities of all, and who also have the most tales to tell. They also count with a +2 charisma. 

6. Cleric 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Firblog, Aarakocra

Clerics are the combat-healers of Dungeons and Dragons, usually forming the line just behind the fighters, Clerics use their healing magic to heal their companions after and sometimes during combat. They are extremely devout to their Gods and usually work for a specific Church, established formally in some city. Their alignment is totally dependant on the alignment of their diety, and they give their entire lives to the service of that diety. 

My choice: With their +2 Dexterity and +1 Wisdom, they are great clerics. Aarakocra are a reclusive race of avians who generally live far above human cities, in great mountains or rocky retreats. But their natural wisdom bonuses and flying abilities make them excellent clerics, in part because they can fly from one wounded to another easily. Their generally benevolent nature also gives them an advantage when dealing with their favorite God. https://www.dndbeyond.com/characters/races

7. Druid  

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Elf, Firbolg

Druids are guardians and keepers of the Forest. Their mission in life is to protect the sanctity and balance of nature at all costs. They are always in-tune with the rhythm of life and the flow of nature. They observe above all the great balance that must be maintained, the eternal cycle between predator and prey, day and night, good and evil. Trees must not be cut down. Animals must not be hunted, water must not be polluted. 

Firbolgs are natural druids with their +2 wisdom. They are a bit more savage than elves, as their alignment is always tending towards neutrality, an important aspect for a successful druid. They are reclusive, live in forests or caves and prefer to stay far from civilization. Their large size and strength make them more resistant than other races for living in the wild. 

8. Monk 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Aarakocra, Halfling

The Monk Class was created primarily out of respect for so many awesome Kung-Fu films from Asia, showing the amazing powers of monks to deal with all manner of mythical beasts. In the game, monks are aspirants to spiritual awareness who use their physical exercises to find spiritual perfection. 

My choice: Monks tend to be a difficult class to play because, at the lower levels, they can't use weapons or armor and have none of the benefits of a higher level, just like halflings! For this reason, halflings, with their +2 constitution and +1 dexterity to keep them alive and armourless, they are excellent choices for the monk class. 

9. Paladin 

 

Best Stat Based Choice:  Human, Dragonborn, Aasimar

Champions of Law and Justice, Paladins are the warrior elite of the realms. To become Paladins, aspirants must not only be excellent warriors but pass a variety of tests, which make them worthy of the title. As such, they are held to a higher standard than other warriors, and they can lose their title for a variety of infractions against their faith. 

Aasimar are touched by the Upper Planes and have +2 Charisma, Healing Hands and Celestial Resistance, so they have a natural inclination towards Justice and Goodness. They also bring a bit of their chosen deity with them. Aasimar are already so close to the Upper Planes that there are looked are more-perfect than ordinary humans, and they tend to have very high charisma, which is essential for a good Paladin. 

10. Ranger 

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Elf, Centaur

Whereas Druids are the magical protectors of the forest, Rangers are the physical protectors of the forest. They do have a little magic, but their real powers are in combat and stealth. Rangers live in the forest to protect the forest. They are not fond of cities and city-folk.

Elves are natural rangers with +2 Dexterity and Fey Ancestry, and we can't think of a more fantastic ranger than Legolas, who was Aragon's elf-ranger friend in the Lord of the Rings. Their skill and ability bonuses make them an easy fit into the ranger class. And, well, they are ELVES. They love the forest. 

11. Sorcerer  

Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Gith, Tiefling

Sorcerers are people who are gifted with magical ability from birth. They learn magic, not by study and hard work, but more like in some kind of awakening to their own innate powers. Many sorcerers claim to be descendants of Dragons or Fay Creatures, or even Devils and Demons, and that is how they believe they receive their magical gifts. 

My choice: Tieflings, with +1 intelligence, +2 charisma and Infernal Inheritance, are the absolute best sorcerers because they are born from a combination of human and demonic entities. As such, they carry in their blood the natural magic that flows from the Lower Planes. Most tieflings are simply unfortunate and try to live among ordinary humans in peace and harmony, but others actually embrace their darkness. Either way, magic is as important to tieflings as water to fish. 

12.  Warlock

  
 
Best Stat Based Choice: Human, Tiefling, Yuan-ti Pureblood

A warlock is an arcane spellcaster who gained power through pacts with powerful entities, most commonly devils, elder evils of the Far Realm, fey, or demons. These pacts allow warlocks to channel powerful abilities of arcane might that would otherwise be closed to them.

My choice: Yuan-ti Purebloods, having +2 Charisma, +1 Intelligence, and Innate Spellcasting are the descendants of an ancient race of reptiles who ruled the realms long before man and then fell into corruption. It is well documented that Yuan-ti had various dealings with many powerful and very evil entities, demons, devils and even elder Gods. This makes Yuan-ti the most obvious and best warlock around. 

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Since before the dawn of man, Robin's spirit has roamed the realms to find the perfect Role Playing Game, finally settling on becoming human on planet Earth and playing D&D.
Gamer Since: 1982
Favorite Genre: RPG
Top 3 Favorite Games:Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights 2, Icewind Dale: Enhanced Edition
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