D&D 5e: Half-elf Rogue Guide

D&D 5e: Half-elf Rogue Guide

So being a bard wasn’t good enough for you? With your natural skills in diplomacy and charm added to being part of the OP class of sneaking, you got the makings of a prick- er- a great Rogue. Being a Rogue in itself is an advantage for Half-elves with their elven accuracy and charisma. 

The Half-Elf race AND the Rogue class can be found in the Player’s Handbook. Click here to pick up your own copy of The Player’s Handbook!

How to Make a Half-Elf Rogue

Depending on the type of elf you are will add skill proficiencies and other benefits. Such as half-drows gaining darkvision, proficiency in the perception skill, & drow magic.

    Your class’ default features are:

  • Expertise
  • Sneak attack
  • Thieves Cant
  • Cunning Action
  • Roguish archetype
  • UNCANNY dodge
  • Reliable Talent
  • Slippery Mind
  • Elusive
  • Stroke of Luck

((Is it OP enough for you?!) See the table on how to play)

Regarding subclasses, half-elves are versatile, so any Rogue subclass you may choose will, at most, accompany well with your character. Although, it’s best to align it with your backstory:

  • Arcane trickster: with a knack for illusion and enchantment spells, this subclass brings the wizard’s magic to the Rogue. As you level you gain the ability to cast wizard spells. The main features include mage hand legerdemain, magical ambush, versatile trickster, and spell thief.
  • Assassin: The edge-lord’s archetype. This subclass is mostly made up of hired hitmen, bounty hunters, spies, and even priests trained to kill enemies of their deities. As an Assassin, you receive bonus proficiencies, assassinate, infiltration expertise, impostor, and death strike.
  • Thief: A vanilla subclass to being a Rogue but not a bad one if your character is cunning and more comfortable with street crime. You get to have fast hands, second-story work, supreme sneak (as if you weren’t sneaky enough), use magic device, and thief reflexes.

In building your Rogue, it’s advised that you make your dexterity the highest, followed by intelligence- for that advantage in investigations- then your charisma. As a half-elf, you gain 2+ on your charisma and a 1+ on two skills of your choice, these are recommended to be used on dexterity and intelligence. 

How to Play a Half-elf Rogue


Hit Dice: 1d8 per rogue level

Hit Points at 1st level: 8 + your Constitution modifier

Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + your Constitution modifier per rogue level after 1st

As a half-elf, there’s no difference in how you can attack and play as a regular Rogue apart from your additions, as mentioned earlier. You have an advantage in speed, dark vision, and saving throws when being charmed or put to sleep.

Outside of Combat, half-elves have their distinct traits like humans, some unique to elves. It can significantly depend upon their upbringing. A common attribute is that they value personal freedom and self-expression, demonstrating neither love of leaders nor the desire for followers. They chafe at rules, resent others’ demands, and are sometimes unreliable and unpredictable. Though this does not mean half-elves are devoid of emotions. Compared to their purebred counterparts, they are more open to forming bonds with other races regardless of hierarchy, status, and benefit. 

How to Roleplay as a Half-elf Rogue

A half-elf faces discrimination despite being welcomed in -most of the time- both worlds. It’s up to you if you’ll use this as a cause of vengeance or a positive motivator; most of the time, half-elves are expert diplomats or wanderers due to the fact they are used to being in-between cultures. 

Half-Elves mature at the same rate humans do and reach adulthood around the age of 20. They live much longer than Humans (exceeding 180 years), which can be fulfilling for younger half-elves but a restless existence for older adults, watching as those with shorter mortalities and loved ones come and go. Remember to follow your moral alignment.

As a Rogue, it’s also essential to consider their background. What are their past and current ties with the law? A criminal past? What leads them to a life of being a rogue? Since your race shares some chaotic bent from the elven side and is known to have no land of their own, why not throw that into the mixing pot for more flavor? It doesn’t just give your character more life but also some material your DM can use to enhance your game.

Being a Rogue, you are capable of speaking Thieves cant. Can’t what? Can’t be straightforward. It’s a kind of dialect, signs, and even symbols that hides a secret message. Like saying “I’ll do it later” actually means “I’m waiting for someone else to do it.” or a drawing of a cat on the wall means “Meeting at midnight.”.

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