[Top 5] D&D: Most Popular Classes

D&D: Most Popular Class
What's your favorite class?

What are the most popular classes of Dungeons and Dragons, and why do players seem to prefer them? 

While overall there's a pretty even split between classes, there are a few that consistently rise above the rest. Here are the top five most popular, taking common party composition into consideration.

5. Paladin

This class seems to have gotten a lot more love lately. Paladins are a powerful option that combines martial ability with spellcasting and healing. More and more, people seem to be advocating for paladins and their multiple advantages.   

Why Paladins Are Popular 

  • This class is actually pretty flexible since they function as tanks, healers, and partial casters. 
  • Paladins are super strong mechanically – some even say overpowered. They get auras, extra attacks, and proficiency in heavy armor and all martial weapons. Divine Smite is without question their best ability, inflicting ridiculous amounts of radiant damage in addition to your weapon damage. 
  • The paladin archetype is a common one for fantasy heroes. There’s also the Oath of Vengeance and Oathbreaker paladins for those who want to try something different than the do-gooder stereotype. 

4. Cleric

It’s no surprise that clerics are one of the more popular classes. Every party needs a healer, and clerics are the ultimate healer class from the very first edition of the game. 

Why Clerics Are Popular 

  • While clerics are strongly associated with healing, they can also deal decent melee damage, and have a great spell list with tons of support and utility options. They also have proficiency in heavy armor, making them hardier than most other casters. 
  • One of the best things about this class is its numerous and diverse subclasses. This really increases their replayability and you could hypothetically play a cleric multiple campaigns in a row and end up with very different characters.

3. Warlock

First appearing in the 3.5 edition, the warlock is one of the newer additions to the game.

It’s unexpected, but the warlock has become one of the more popular spellcasting classes in Dungeons and Dragons. According to recent statistics gathered from D&D Beyond, warlocks have become more and more popular over the last few years. 

Why Warlocks Are Popular 

  • While warlocks have limited spell slots, it’s balanced out by the fact that they get them back after just a short rest. 
  • Warlocks get the unique class feature Invocations and Eldritch Blast, one of the best damage-dealing cantrips in the game. 
  • Part of this class’s popularity might be because of how useful it is for multiclassing. Lots of multiclass builds have warlock as their primary or secondary class. 
  • There’s lots of roleplaying appeal to this class. A player and DM can have a lot of fun working with the warlock/patron relationship and what that means for the story of the campaign. 

2. Rogue

Another class that’s been around since the inception of Dungeons and Dragons, Rogues have long been one of the more popular choices. 

Though they’ve gotten a little bit of a bad reputation due to those who roleplay them as loner, chaotic neutral stereotypes, there’s actually a lot of fun to be had as a rogue. 

Why Rogues Are Popular 

  • With rogues, there is room for a more mischievous, trickster-like character. The roleplaying opportunities and the difference of the rogue from the typical hero stereotypes attract players. 
  • Rogues fill a unique role in parties that can’t really be replicated by many other classes. 
  • They have some great features, like Expertise, Sneak Attack, and Cunning Action. They have increased mobility in combat, lock picking, and a way to gain advantage on attack rolls. 
  • They also have some great subclass options. There’s Assassin, Phantom, Arcane Trickster, and Swashbuckler, which all have interesting flavor and unique abilities. 

1. Fighter

The fighter is the class that consistently beats the rest as the most played option in the game. 

It’s been a staple of D&D since the game’s first edition, which makes it a common choice for long-time players. At the same time, the simplicity of the class’s mechanics makes it a good fit for newer players as well. 

Why Fighters Are Popular 

  • The fighter is the fundamental fantasy hero archetype. They are the ordinary person without any special abilities who achieves great things through strength determination. 
  • One of the best things about fighters is their versatility. The character is essentially a blank slate and the class is extremely malleable both mechanically and in terms of roleplay. 
  • Fighters get some great features: proficiency in all armor and shields and all martial weapons, access to every Fighting Style, and Second Wind. Even better is Action Surge, since action economy is so important in 5e.  Because of this, fighters get more attacks per round than any other class. They also get more feats and ability score increases. 

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Morgan is the newest crypid on the east coast. Legend says she can be summoned with an old Pokemon Crystal cartridge and a copy of Jim Henson's The Labyrinth on VHS.
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