Feats play an integral role in designing a fun and unique character in D&D 5E. They are a great way to cover weaknesses or boost your character’s strengths – and usually a much more fun choice than going for the standard Ability Score Improvement whenever you have the chance!
With the official material providing more than 80 feats, picking up the feat that is just the right fit for your character is easier said than done, so in this article, we’ll give you our take on the top 15 best feats in D&D 5e!
The list focuses on the feats in Player’s Handbook while sprinkling in honorable mentions of the more specific and race-oriented feats from newer official releases such as Xanathar’s Guide to Everything.
The Best Feats in D&D 5E
Being lucky is awesome, and although picking up the Lucky feat in D&D 5E won’t make your character Gladstone Glander, it’s not far from it!
The lucky feat provides you with 3 “luck points” on each adventuring day that can be used to roll an additional d20 whenever you make an attack roll, an ability, or a saving throw – or when an attack roll is made against you!
You can even spend these luck points after you roll the die but before the outcome is determined, which (in some ways, at least) makes it even more powerful than the Divination wizard’s hailed Portent feature which can only be used once per turn and before the roll is made.
Why is Lucky so great? Well, since D&D is a game of dice, it’s also a game of luck, and sometimes, the dice just aren’t with you. Being able to change the outcome of a critical failure, preventing a critical hit against you, or rerolling a saving throw against a powerful spell can literally be a game-changer – and is something that any class can use!
So, if you’re uncertain which feat to pick, Lucky is always a great choice.
Honorable Mention: Bountiful Luck
If you’re a halfling, you’re already bestowed with inherent luck through the racial trait of the same name as the Lucky feat. This trait allows you to reroll any rolls of 1 which is quite amazing – but it also makes the Lucky feat a somewhat less ideal pick.
Lucky for you (heh), Xanathar’s Guide to Everything provides the halfling-exclusive Bountiful Luck feat that lets you extend your racial luck to your allies. This is an awesome feat and definitely top tier!
2. Polearm Mastery
Listing the best feats is somewhat ironic since it really boils down to your character’s build, your adventure’s setting, and the party’s overall composition. Polearm Mastery is a good example of that.
When you take the Attack action and attack only with only a glaive, halberd, quarterstaff, or spear, this feat lets you make an additional attack as a bonus action that deals 1d4 bludgeoning damage + whatever bonus you have from the ability modifier used for the attack.
In D&D 5e, action economy is everything in combat, and you really want to utilize not only your action but also your bonus action and your reaction whenever possible.
So, if you’re a martial class who doesn’t really have much to use your bonus action on, getting an additional attack as a bonus action makes Polearm Mastery one of the best feats you can pick up – even if it means changing your favored sword for a subpar weapon type.
If you already have plenty of things to use your bonus action on, however, this feat is much less useful.
If you’re a ranged character, Sharpshooter is one of the best feats to pick up. Aside from allowing you to ignore half cover and three-quarters cover and removing the disadvantage imposed when attacking from long range, this feat allows you to take a -5 penalty to an attack roll in exchange for +10 damage.
Potentially dealing an additional 10 damage on every single attack is extremely powerful. Now I know you may not want to use this feature when facing an NPC with 18 or more AC, but often you’ll be facing oozes, undead, beasts, and various other creatures that are easy to hit – and kill, with this feat!
If you’re a ranger or a fighter, this feat pairs up extremely well with the Archery Fighting Style which gives you +2 to ranged attack rolls – and makes this feat even more amazing!
4. Great Weapon Master
Like the Sharpshooter feat, picking up Great Weapon Master is a great feat that can dramatically increase your damage output. Aside from sounding cool, this feat allows you to take a -5 penalty to your attack rolls in exchange for +10 damage.
It also lets you make an extra attack as a bonus action whenever you score a critical hit or reduce a creature to 0 hit points which is a neat bonus – especially at lower levels when fighting weak enemies.
The reason this feat isn’t placed as high on the list as Sharpshooter is mainly that melee characters have other equally viable options (relative to a range build), and because there isn’t any fighting style that gives a benefit to attack rolls made with melee attacks like Archery doers for ranged attacks.
That said, if you’re playing a barbarian and use Reckless Attack every chance you get, Great Weapon Master is probably the best feat you can pick up!
5. War Caster
This feat is great for almost any spellcaster since it gives you advantage on check to maintain concentration on spells and allows you to cast spells with somatic components even though you’re wielding a weapon and a shield.
It also lets you cast any kind of spell that requires 1 action and targets only that creature instead of making an opportunity attack, which can be an extremely powerful feature if you often wind up in melee combat.
This feature also pairs up well with weapon-based cantrips such as booming blade and green-flame blade – and could even warrant a paladin, a fighter, or an aggressive druid picking up the Magic Initiate feat just to get one of these cantrips in combination with the War Caster feat.
Ever wanted to play as a lich character? Milando’s Guide to Magical Marvels provides new feats for characters who want to attain lichdom, become a lycanthrope, or even a vampire!
While kind of boring, this feat can also be an extremely powerful choice and a great way to compensate for the specific weaknesses of a class.
I would highly recommend this feat to spellcasters who aren’t proficient in Constitution saving throws (anyone but the sorcerer) since checks to maintain concentration are a Constitution saving throw and a lot of monsters target Constitution saves.
Not all saving throws are equal, however, and aside from Constitution and perhaps Wisdom saving throws at a late point in the game, I would avoid this feat since proficiency in Strength, Intelligence, Charisma, or even Dexterity saving throws just aren’t as important.
7. Magic Initiate
In terms of raw power, this feat may not deserve a spot this high up the list, but being able to pick a 1st-level spell alongside two cantrips can be pretty awesome – especially the cantrip part.
This feat offers lots of versatility and fun options to design your character around! While a martial class could pick up booming blade or green-flame blade (or both) with this feat, having a character who can spam guidance or cast mending can also be a great addition to the party in some cases!
Honorable Mention: Fey Touched & Shadow Touched
Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything also provides the Fey Touched and Shadow Touched feats which give you misty step and invisibility respectively (which are both 2nd-level spells) plus one 1st-level spells (from a specific school). They don’t give you any cantrips, but instead, you get a +1 to Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma. Of the two, Fey Touched is the best!
If you’re throwing yourself at the front of every encounter as the party’s tank, this feat is for you! Sentinel gives you great control over your enemies by reducing their speed to 0 whenever you hit them with an opportunity attack (effectively preventing them from running away from you).
As an added bonus, even taking the Disengage action won’t prevent creatures from provoking opportunity attacks from you – and when a creature within 5 feet of you tries to attack another creature than you, you can attack that creature as a reaction!
9. Inspiring Leader
Every party needs a leader, and if you have the Charisma score to back it up, this feat might be a great choice for you. Basically, it allows you to grant six allies (yourself included) temporary hit points equal to your level + your Charisma modifier every short rest.
It’s best at low levels, but even later in the game, the added hit points are a decent buff!
Honorable Mention: Chef
The Chef feature from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything is a flavorful alternative to the Inspiring Leader. Instead of inspiring the party with a 10-minute speech, this
feat lets you cook up a number of ‘special treats’ that can be consumed as a bonus action and grant temporary hit points equal to your proficiency bonus.
It takes one hour to make a number of treats equal to your proficiency bonus and they only last for 8 hours, but since the feat also increases your Constitution or Wisdom by 1 and grants the party an extra 1d8 hit points on short rests due to your amazing cooking skills, the Chef feat is a great choice!
If your party already has a dedicated healer, this feat isn’t very useful – but if all of you were hoping that another party member would take up that mantle and none of you did, this feat might be your savior!
While the healer’s kit is already a great item that’ll let you stabilize a target without any check, using it with this feat means the target will regain 1 hit point instead. That’s pretty good.
More importantly, you can use an action to spend a use of your healer’s kit to restore 1d6 + 4 hit points + additional hit points equal to that creature’s maximum number of hit dice.
Although a creature can only be stitched together in this way once per long rest, for a level 3 party it would translate into healing every party member more than 10 hit points on average numerous times each day which is arguably much better than the 7 or so hit points casting 1st-level cure wounds can manage. And because the bonus is based on hit dice, it even scales decently at higher levels.
A rogue with the Thief archetype can even use a healer’s kit as a bonus action!
Did I mention that this feat is banned at our table?
11. Shield Master
Having stuff to do with your bonus action is great – and being able to push an enemy or knock it prone to give your party advantage on their attacks against it can be quite useful. And fun.
It should be noted that the shove option granted by this feat can only be made as a bonus action after you’ve taken the attack action, but when you also consider the added bonus to Dexterity saving throws and halving of damage from fireball and the like, Shield Master is still a great feat!
Not starting every combat at the bottom of the initiative and never even get the chance to lift your sword before your party dismember the enemies ahead is quite satisfying – and with a +5 bonus to initiative from the Alert feat, that’s possible even for the fighter who’s dumped dexterity!
The Alert feat also makes you unable to be surprised which can be quite annoying for the DM but pretty awesome for you.
Being able to move quickly across the battlefield can be pretty handy, and although I wouldn’t classify Mobile as the best feat out there, it’s a decent choice if you’re tired of always being last to the fight due to being encumbered by an armor you aren’t really strong enough to wear, carrying too much gold, or simply having short legs and a walking speed of 25 feet.
If you’re a monk or barbarian planning to go full Usain Bolt, Mobile is also a viable feat!
14. Keen Mind
Keen Mind is one of the few non-combat feats on the list – and although it isn’t powerful in the sense that it makes your character hit harder, it can be a really useful feat. Did your party lose its way in the Feywild? Well, at least your keen mind knows which way is north and how many hours there are left before the next sunrise! Didn’t take notes last session? Well, ask your DM – your character remembers everything that has happened within the past month!
15. Mounted Combatant
I’ve rarely seen mounts play a huge if any role in D&D 5E, but on the off-chance it’d ever make sense for you to build a character riding a beautiful stallion or a bad-ass rhinoceros, Mounted Combatant is the way to do it!
First of all, the feat gives you advantage on attack rolls against any unmounted creature smaller than your mount, which is just a great bonus. Almost as importantly, it allows you to divert attacks against your mount to target you instead – which is just about the only way for a mount to survive in 5e!
Is it a good pick? Probably not. Rarely perhaps. Is it cool? Hell yeah!
Since this list is mainly focused on feats in Player’s Handbook I thought I should finish off by mentioning some of my favorite picks from other sourcebooks.
First to mind is Elven Accuracy which lets you roll an additional die whenever you have advantage on your attack roll. This feat is pretty great and works well in combination with numerous builds. The only issue is that it’s an elf-only feat.
I considered giving the Skilled feat (which lets you choose three new skills) a spot on the list, but Skill Expert from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything is just so much better. It gives you +1 to one ability score, one new skill proficiency, and expertise in one skill of your choice.
Yes, skill proficiencies are nice – but expertise is far better.
I love feats and believe them to be one of the most important tools to personalize your character in 5E D&D and achieve just the right and unique build that you want to play – and much more so than using ASI to increase your main stat.
While this list puts a huge emphasis on the ‘best’ feats in terms of increasing a character’s overall combat, I feel like I should also point out that the best feat is always the feat that’ll bring you the most fun to have on your character!
That said, this list aims to give you an overview of the various feats that I believe to be a solid pick in most circumstances. I hope you’ll agree and can use it as inspiration the next time you’re going to pick a feat!
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And if you want new feats that’ll allow characters to become a lich or a lycanthrope, or reward your characters with accursed boons, check out Milando’s Guide to Magical Marvels!