[Top 5] D&D Best Ranger Builds That Are OP

Best D&D ranger builds
Drizzt do'Urden and his kitten, a ranger and the only drow character that has a good alignement we know of

Which are the 5 most OP D&D ranger builds?

Are you starting a new campaign and thinking of playing as a ranger? Come with me and I’ll tell you how to become the Aragorn amongst your fellowship of players. Or the Hawkeye if a bow is more your jam.

The ranger isn’t by far the strongest class in D&D 5e (some would argue the weakest). But it can be a very fun one to play with. Fear not dear reader,  I’ll teach you some of the best builds to turn it into something OP that you can use to cause some REAL damage and wreck your enemies to bits and pieces. We’ll focus on five specific builds, two for melee combat and three for ranged. 

Now, for your ability scores, you should put dexterity or strength before anything else. Most of the options here will work better with dexterity though. To maximize the build I’d recommend dexterity (15), constitution (14), wisdom (13), intelligence (12), strength (10), and charisma (8) to start with. If you prefer a strength-based build then go with strength (15), dexterity (14), constitution (13), wisdom (12), intelligence (10), and charisma (8). 

5. Pure Ranger (If you don’t wanna deal with multiclassing)

The pteranodon is just one of the best mounts in the game.

Ok, so multiclassing can be a bit of extra work and if you don’t want to go through it no problems! Here’s the best you can make of a pure ranger build: a folk hero beast master stout halfling that’s bonded with a pteranodon. It sounds wild am I right? 

Using the dexterity-focused ability scores I mentioned earlier and the UA revised ranger you can have on hell of an archer, with damage that would make Hawkeye proud. The cherry on top is of course the pteranodon. Raining arrows on your enemies from where many can’t reach you is insanely OP, especially at the lower levels.

  •  With the stout halfling you'll have a +2 bonus to your dexterity, the lucky (that is already awesome by itself) and the brave traits, halfling nimbleness, and a +1 to your constitution.
  • Pick perception, stealth, and investigation as your class skills because the folk hero background will grant you proficiency in animal handling and survival. 
  • On the second level go with the archery fighting style to get a sweet +2 bonus to your attack rolls and top it off with the sharpshooter feat.
  • And now to the best part, on the third level choose the Beast Master archetype. With the revised ranger version you’ll have a pretty powerful conclave and the chance to bond with a pteranodon. Since you’re a halfling you can actually mount your companion and he has the amazing ability Flyby, which means no opportunity attacks when you’re flying around on him!

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4. The Bear (when you prefer melee and to bash peoples skulls in)

The bear barbarian is already kinda OP by itself, and usually a great choice when multiclassing.

If you want a strength-based ranger this is the go-to with multiclassing, after all, there’s something thrilling about hand-to-hand combat. To be up close and personal with all the blood and gore I recommend this: human variant pirate hunter conclave ranger multiclassing into the path of the totem warrior barbarian.

Using the strength ability scores, there’s no reason for your ranger to be stuck as a ranged player. With this build, you'll end up with an extremely resistant character that has a ton of bonuses, especially if you're up against one of your favored enemies. Plus you get to Hulk out and smash around!

  • With your extra points from the human variant in strength and constitution and with your free feat at first level, you can get the Great Weapon Master feat. Grab a heavy weapon and, if you take the -5 penalty to the attack roll, you can add +10 to the damage! 
  • Again, use the UA revised ranger. You’ll have an advantage on initiative rolls and on attack rolls against creatures that have not acted on your first turn.  The pirate background will give you the athletics and perception skills, so pick stealth, survival, and investigation for your class ones. Also, talk to your DM before choosing your favored enemy and Greater Favored Enemy since you have a +2 bonus to damage rolls with weapon attacks against them.
  • Pick defense for your fighting style, +1 to AC is nothing to laugh at. At the 3rd level get the Colossus Slayer feature, it'll give you a 1d8 bonus to your damage roll if the creature you're hitting isn't with full hp once per turn. At the 5th level, you'll get an Extra Attack and at the 7th you can get the Multiattack Defense to get a bonus to your AC when an enemy has multiattack and has already hit you.   
  • At the 11th level, you can get the Whirlwind Attack so that you can try to hit anything within 5 feet of you with only one action.  And at the 15th level pick the Evasion feature to save you from a lot of unwanted damage.
  • With all that you should get at least 3 levels of barbarian. Already on its first level you can enter a Rage and get some awesome perks like advantages in some checks, a +2 bonus to your damage rolls made with melee weapons that use strength, and a few very useful resistances. Plus you'll get Unarmored Defence, which can be so useful when you don't have magic armor.
  • At the second level, you get Danger Sense and Reckless Attack and finally, at the third level, you can choose your Primal Path. My recommendation is the Path of the Totem Warrior's Bear, it will give you resistance to everything except psychic damage while raging. 

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3. Wild Magic (if you really wanna do magic)

Magic is always fun to exploit, but most times it's best to only multiclass into a class that uses the same ability score to cast.

If you just love all the possibilities that magic can bring to the table but still want it to be kinda broken you're gonna love this build. To abuse the magic system you should make this character: a folk hero wood elf hunter conclave ranger multiclassing into circle of the moon druid.

Now let’s talk magic. 

Hunters Mark is a must for all ranger builds. It gives you a 1d6 of extra damage whenever you hit the creature you marked as well as advantage against them on wisdom and perception checks. Goodberry is also amazing, making berries (duh) that heal 1 hp each. Silence is a pretty good one too when you're up against another caster. Spike growth is also quite useful in creating difficult terrain and causing some damage. But my favorite by far is Conjure Animals, which lets you summon spirits that take beast form and the possibilities are endless if you're creative enough. Lightning Arrow is also an awesome choice for archers. 

All of this works for almost all the builds in this list.

Now, the druids’ spells have some overlap with the rangers because of similar themes. But there are still some great ones you can get. Conjure Woodland Beings, Conjure Elemental and Conjure Fey are similar to Conjure animals and equally useful. Polymorph can also be very useful when used creatively, allowing you to transform yourself or others into beasts.  Wrath of Nature can also be an excellent option to slow down enemies and cause damage. 

In the end with this build you'll be able to shoot some arrows, get way more spells slots, and be able to switch to melee in your beast form when necessary.

  • The wood elf race will give you a +1 bonus for your wisdom and a +2 to your dexterity. Then pick perception, stealth, and investigation as your class skills and you'll get proficiency in animal handling and survival from the folk hero background. Also, pick the sharpshooter feat to ignore anything but full cover and have that possible +10 to your damage rolls.
  • You're still gonna use the dexterity-based ability scores but you're gonna play your hunter conclave a little differently. First, you'll choose the archery fighting style to cash in that +2 to hit bonus. Then at the 3rd level pick the Horde Breaker feature so that you can attack another creature that's within 5 feet of the one you just attacked with the same weapon (Pick the longbow, you can't go wrong with the longbow). In the 5th level pick the Multiattack Defence again and at the 11th the Volley feature to shoot arrows at any creatures within 10 feet of a point you can see in your weapon range. 
  • At least six of your levels should be dedicated to your druid multiclass. Yes, just so you can grab the precious Circle of the Moon! On your second druid level, you'll be able to use your Wild Shape to transform into a beast with a challenge rate as high as 1 (and you still can maintain concentration on a spell you've already cast). When you transform you assume the beasts hit points, but when you turn back you return to the hit points you had before you transformed, and oh boy is this easy to abuse.
  • On your 6th druid level, the challenge rating of your Wild Shape can be as high as your druid level divided by 3, rounded down. Plus now your attacks in beast form count as magical so that resistance or immunity to nonmagical attacks aren't a bother anymore.

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2. The Crossbow Assassin with a twist (if you wanna be sneaky and teleport)

Crossbows are awesome too and with the right build can be a really powerful weapon.

Now, if you want a character that can do both melee and ranged attacks with the same weapon, get all those juicy sneak attacks, and teleport this is your go-to: human variant urchin Horizon Walker conclave ranger multiclassing into assassin rogue.

With Distant Strike you're sure to have a lot of fun approaching or getting the heck away from your enemies, in higher levels, you’ll basically become Nighcrawler. With the added benefit of still having all five fingers. The dexterity ability scores will pull all this together and really boost your rogue multiclass. 

  • With your bonus human variant points in dex and intelligence get the Crossbow Expert feature. That way you can use a single-hand crossbow both in ranged and in melee attacks. With the Archery fighting style, you can also add that +2 to your damage rolls. Since the urchin background will give you the sleight of hand and stealth skills pick perception, survival, and investigation for your class ones. 
  • On your third level you'll get Detect Portal, which may or may not be useful depending on the campaign, and the Planar warrior that allows you to turn all the damage you did to a creature into force damage and also throws in a 1d8 of onus force damage. Then at the 7th level, you learn the Ethereal Step, that's the Etherealness spells without using spell slots.
  • Finally, you gain Distant Strike at the 11th level, the crown jewel of this conclave. It allows  you to teleport up to 10 feet before each attack and if you attack two creatures with the action you can use it to attack a third creature. 
  • With the multiclassing into rogue, you gain expertise in two skills and the awesome sneak attack. It gives you a 1d6 bonus on damage if you have advantage against the creature you're attacking. On the 2nd level, you can also use a bonus action to dash, disengage or hide. And at the 3rd level, you can pick the Assassin archetype to get advantage against creatures that haven't taken their turn in combat yet and a critical hit against any creature that you surprise. 

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1. The Northern Ranger (for when you just have to be the heir to the throne)

Aragorn, son of Arathorn, the character on which this entire class was based of.

D&D rangers were inspired by the great Aragorn, son of Arathorn so nothing would be more suitable than making a character inspired on him for this list. To make this happen you should go with this: human outlander hunter conclave ranger multiclassing into battlemaster fighter.

The fighter class and strength-based ability scores are one hell of a combination with the Hunter conclave. Although relatively simple in its mechanics, this combo stacks useful abilities and bonuses like its gold. Truly fit for a king.

  • Geting the feat  Lucky you’re able to basically reroll certain plays, which can save your life here and there. Pick perception, stealth, and animal handling as your class skills because the outlander background will give you athletics and survival. Plus the dueling fighting skill to get that +2 bonus to your damage rolls.
  • Once in 3rd level with the Hunter conclave, you can get the Hoard Breaker to attack another creature that's within 5 feet of the original one, and good old Multiattack defense at 7th level. Other ranger abilities will also help bring the character to life like the Favored Enemies, Fleet of Foot and Hide in Plain Sight.
  • With your fighter multiclass you'll choose another fighting style, pick defense to get a +1 bonus to your AC. On the 2nd level, you'll have Action Surge, which is an extra action per long rest.
  • On the 3rd level, you can choose the Battle Master archetype and get access to three special maneuvers fueled by your superiority dice. Get Disarming Attack,  Ripost and Menacing Attack. At the 10th level, your superiority dice will get even better!
  • As a fighter you'll get an Extra Attack, so you can attack twice each time you use an action. And at 9th level you can reroll a saving throw you failed using the Indomitable feature.

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