D&D 5e: Monk Class Guide

D&D 5e: Monk Class Guide


Welcome to the Monk class guide. We’ll be talking about stats, races, skills, and feats that are important as a monk. We’ll also talk about backgrounds, weapons, and “armor” that will benefit you as a monk. 





Ability Scores

STR You’ll use DEX instead. 

DEX This should be the highest.

CON This is good to have for hitpoints.

INT Dump

WIS This should be second. If you’re playing as an Astral monk, this needs to be higher and DEX second. 

CHA Dump


Aarakocra Boost to DEX

Aasimar CHAR boost

Protector WIS boost

Scourge You get a CON boost.

Fallen Nothing good for monks

Bugbear Boost to DEX and STR. STR isn’t needed.

Centaur STR and WIS boost. You don’t need STR.

Changeling: Nothing good for monks.

Dragonborn Nothing good for monks.

Dwarf Con boost by 2. 

Hill WIS boost

Mountain Nothing good for monks.

Duergar: Nothing good for a monk.

Elf DEX boost by 2. 

Drow: Nothing good for monks.

Eladrin Nothing good for monks.

High Nothing good for monks.

Wood WIS +1 

Firbolg Boost to WIS and STR.

Genasi CON boost

Air Boost to DEX

Earth Nothing good for monks.

Fire Nothing good for monks.

Water WIS boost

Gith Boost to INT.

Githyanki Nothing good for monks.

Githzerai WIS boost.

Gnome INT boost

Deep DEX boost. 

Forest DEX boost.

Rock Boost to CON

Goblin boost to CON and DEX; excellent combo.

Goliath STR and CON but more STR than CON. 

Half-Elf 2 ability scores can be increased by 1 and +2 to CHAR.

Half-Orc STR and CON. STR isn’t necessary. 

Halfling DEX boost.

Lightfoot Nothing good for monks.

Stout DEX boost

Hobgoblin CON and INT boost. Don’t need the INT.

Human: Each ability score gets a +1. As a variant human, you get a feat.

Kalashtar WIS +2 and CHAR + 1; CHAR isn’t necessary.

Kenku: DEX and WIS. Really good combo.

Kobold DEX and -2 to STR.

Leonin CON and STR. More CON than STR. Con is good but STR isn’t needed.

Lizardfolk CON +2 and WIS +1. 

Loxodon CON and WIS. Good combo to have.

Minotaur STR and CON. More STR than CON. Not really worth it. 

Orc STR and CON boost but more STR than CON.

Satyr CHAR and DEX. More CHAR than DEX. 


Beasthide: CON +2 and STR gets a +1. 

Longtooth: Your STR +2 and your DEX gets a +1. 

Swiftstride: DEX + 2 and CHAR +1. 

Wildhunt: DEX gets a +1 and WIS increases by 2.  

Simic Hybrid CON +2 and +1 to another stat.

Tabaxi DEX and CHAR. 

Triton CON, STR, and CHAR boost. CON good but I don’t recommend this one.

Tiefling INT and CHAR boost. 

Asmodeus Nothing good for monks

Baalzebul Nothing good for monks

Dispatcher CHAR and DEX. 

Fierna CHAR and WiS

Glasya CHAR and WIS.

Levistus CHAR and CON. More CHAR than CON. But I wouldn’t recommend this one.

Mammon Nothing good for monks.

Mephistopheles Nothing good for monks

Zariel Nothing good for monks.

Feral INT and DEX. 

Tortle STR and WIS boost.

Warforged CON and +1 to another stat.

Yuan-Ti Pureblood Nothing good for monks. 

Class Features

Hit points: 1d8

Armor: None

Weapons: simple weapons, shortswords

Tools: artisan’s tools or one musical instrument

Martial Arts: use your DEX instead of STR for attacks and damage rolls for your unarmored strikes and monk weapons.

Unarmored movement: get +10to speed if you don’t wear armor

Deflect Missiles: You can catch projectiles and eventually throw them back at the opponent. 

Slow Fall: you can reduce your failing damage as a reaction by 5 x your monk level

You get an extra attack at level 5.

Stunning Strike: you can stun enemies.

Evasion: When making a DEX save, you take half damage if you fail and no damage if you save.

Stillness of Mind: You can end a charm/ frightened effect on yourself. 

Purity of Body: You’re immune to disease and poison. Situational.

Tongue of the Sun and Moon: Know all languages. Situational. 

Diamond Soul: Proficiency in all saving throws

Timeless Body: You age slower, can’t be aged magically. Roll play purposes.

Empty Body: Using Ki points, it lets you become invisible for 1 minutes. 

Perfect Self: When you roll for initiative and have no Ki points, you automatically have 4. 


Way of the Four Elements: You’re the avatar

Way of the Open Hand: Combat master

Way of the Shadow: You’re a ninja. 

Way of Mercy: Helping the Needy, if you’re going for a healer type.

Way of the Drunken Master: You’re drunk and can fight.

Way of the Long Death: Obsessed with death and uses their knowledge of it to use martial arts.

Way of the Kensei: You get proficiency with all the weapons, you’re walking armory. 

Way of the Astral Self: You’re a Jojo character. 

Way of the Sun Sol: You can be Goku


Acrobatics You wiggle out of anything (sort of), if they can catch you

Animal Handling Situational

Arcana INT based

Athletics STR based

Deception CHAR based

History INT based. This skill isn’t used as often.

Insight Situational. WIS based. 

Intimidation CHAR based. Depends on roleplay.

Investigation Good to have but you won’t be good at it since it’s INT based.

Medicine WIS based. Good if you want to do some healing or checking bodies.

Nature INT based. Won’t be good at it but it’s useful. Used commonly.

Perception WIS based. Also a skill used a lot.

Performance CHAR based. Very situational. 

Persuasion CHAR based and it’s situational

Religion INT based. Depending on your background, you might gain proficiency. Very situational.

Sleight of Hand You’ll have the DEX

Stealth Use DEX to hide, very sneaky

Survival WIS based. 

Top 3 Backgrounds

Hermit: Medicine and Religion skill proficiencies, proficiency with Herbalism kit, you get an extra language. 

Outlander: Athletics and Survival skill proficiencies, extra language

Acolyte: Proficiency with Insight and Religion skills, two languages of your choice. 

Top 3 Weapons

Your fists are your weapon. As a Kinsei monk, you have proficiency in any weapon you want. 


You don’t wear armor as a monk. Thanks to your unarmored defense, you get 10 + DEX + WIS for your armor class. 

Top 5 Feats

Mobile: speed gain of 10 and difficult terrain doesn’t cost extra movement.

Tough: hit points are always good.

Magic Initiate: take shallegih from the druid spell list and your Astral monk can do DAMAGE. 

Resilient: +1 to a chosen ability score

Alert: +5 to initiative, can’t be surprised, enemies don’t get advantage on you

Multiclass options

Druid – WIS needs to be at a 13, you can shape shift.

Cleric – WIS at 13 needed, you’ll cast healing and non healing spells.

Rogue – DEX at 13, you can be really sneaky.

Ranger – WIS and DEX need to be at 13

Fighter – STR or DEX should be at 13. 

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