Expanded Ability Scores

Notes from Bando: Wow, I’ve been dead for a few weeks, haven’t I? Sorry about that! I’ve been seriously busy with larger projects, and life. I’ll probably recede back into being dead after this, but hey, enjoy this! Thank you to Dunkoro and distress/Mirian from the Haven discord for giving me a lot of help here!

Expanded Ability Scores

In the 5th edition of Dungeons and Dragons, most ability scores don’t seem to do too many interesting things besides flat numbers, even though thematically characters in media oftentimes have interesting traits based on their different physical and mental characteristics. The following rules are intended to be used simultaneously as a way to emulate this trend, while also buffing the weaker ability scores of Strength and Intelligence.

When a player character has an ability score with a modifier equal to or greater than the value listed underneath the Modifier column of any of the tables below, they gain the effect listed in the corresponding Effect column.


Modifier Effect
+3 You have advantage on Strength and Dexterity saving throws and ability checks made against effects that would knock you prone.
+4 You can wield a weapon that is made for a creature one size larger than yourself without penalty, such as a heavy weapon if you’re Small.
+5 You are counted as if you were one size category larger for grappling.


Modifier Effect
+3 You can use your Dexterity instead of your Strength when calculating the distance you can jump.
+4 Your speed increases by 5 feet.
+5 You always win initiative ties.


Modifier Effect
+3 You gain immunity to disease.
+4 You gain proficiency in death saving throws.
+5 Whenever you take nonmagical bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage lower than your Constitution modifier, you take no damage, instead. This is calculated before resistance to damage.


Modifier Effect
+3 You gain proficiency in one tool of your choice, and you learn one language of your choice.
+4 You gain proficiency in one skill of your choice.
+5 Choose one of your skill proficiencies. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses that skill.


Modifier Effect
+3 You always know which way is north, and you always know the number of hours left before the next sunrise or sunset.
+4 When you take the Help action, you also grant a bonus to the ability check or attack roll equal to half of your proficiency bonus.
+5 When you make an initiative roll, you can use your Wisdom modifier instead of your Dexterity modifier.


Modifier Effect
+3 You can communicate basic ideas to a creature that can understand a language, such as “Hello”, “Goodbye”, and “Yes”, even if you do not share a language.
+4 Your alignment cannot be magically changed unless you allow it.
+5 Whenever you make a Charisma check, you can treat a roll of 4 or lower on the d20 as a 5.

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