D&D Paladin 5e Guide

Published on December 12, 2021, Last modified on April 26th, 2024

In this post, we will be examining the paladin’s class features and how you can optimize your paladin through choosing your race, background, ability scores, subclass, feats, and spells.

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Paladin 5e Guide Rating Scheme

This guide is meant as a deep dive into the DnD 5e paladin. For a quick overview of other 5e classes, check out our Guide to DnD 5e Classes.

The color code below has been implemented to help you identify, at a glance, how good that option will be for your paladin. This color coding isn’t a hard and fast rule; there are plenty of sub-optimized options out there that will be viable to your party and will be fun to play.

  • Red isn’t going to contribute to the effectiveness of your character build at all
  • Orange is an OK option
  • Green is a good option
  • Blue is a great option, you should strongly consider this option for your character
  • Sky Blue is an amazing option. If you do not take this option your character would not be optimized

D&D 5e Paladin Overview

Level Proficiency Bonus Features Spell Slots per Spell Level
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
1st +2 Divine Sense, Lay on Hands
2nd +2 Fighting Style, Spellcasting, Divine Smite 2
3rd +2 Divine Health, Sacred Oath 3
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement 3
5th +3 Extra Attack 4 2
6th +3 Aura of Protection 4 2
7th +3 Sacred Oath feature 4 3
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement 4 3
9th +4 4 3 2
10th +4 Aura of Courage 4 3 2
11th +4 Improved Divine Smite 4 3 3
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement 4 3 3
13th +5 4 3 3 1
14th +5 Cleansing Touch 4 3 3 1
15th +5 Sacred Oath feature 4 3 3 2
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement 4 3 3 2
17th +6 4 3 3 3 1
18th +6 Aura improvements 4 3 3 3 1
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement 4 3 3 3 2
20th +6 Sacred Oath feature 4 3 3 3 2


The paladin is a class known for its heavy armor, damage output, and roleplaying demands.

Righteous warriors on the path of the paladin must dedicate themselves completely to an Oath devoted to certain ideals. Some examples are:

  • The Oath of Devotion is for the classic paladin feel. They are typically lawful and the follower of some deity.
  • The Oath of the Ancients is cool if you want to ease up on the lawful good roleplaying. Protectors of sacred groves as well as innocents, paladins of the Oath of the Ancients devote themselves to protecting the Light from the darkness of the world, which is a pretty vague mission and gives some room for flexibility.
  • The Oath of Vengeance is for people who want to go for a more Marvel’s Punisher vibe. This Oath is dedicated to the single-minded pursuit of the guilty at the cost of all else. Extremely mobile and terrifyingly efficient, paladins of this Oath will never stop pursuing their prey.


Paladins are a great option for a tanky damage dealer. They are a semi-spellcaster, meaning they only learn up to 5th level spells and have a limited pool of spell slots to draw from.

Paladins are proficient in all weapons and armor, so they have their pick of the litter when it comes to how they want to outfit themselves for combat. This, on top of their extra damage from Divine Smites, makes them one of the highest damage dealers available.

Paladins have a unique ability to be a sort of battlefield medic. They can be in the thick of the fray without getting killed and have a pool of healing to draw from thanks to their Lay on Hands class feature. The paladin’s spells also have a focus on healing and, when combined with their ability to buff party members through their Aura of Protection, allows for some powerful party support.


Paladins are known as one of the stronger 5e classes due to their damage output and versatility. Similar to bards, paladins are at their best when you are able to take advantage of what roleplaying and CHA can do for you. A paladin’s Oath is what gives the class their holy butt-kicking powers and sticking to this oath is important to maintaining these powers.

The largest gaps in the paladin’s arsenal are attacking at a distance and dealing area of effect damage. Their spells and class features mainly focus on dealing single target, melee damage. While they are great at what they do, paladins can feel a bit out of their depth when having to deal with a ranged or highly mobile enemy.

Paladin Class Power Spikes

If you are jumping into a campaign at a specific level and you want a character that’s going to be really strong right away, this section of our guide will help you understand the points where the paladin class is strongest.

As a class, the paladin tends to perform best at the early stages of the games, especially after gaining access to their Spellcasting and Divine Smite abilities. However, the class remains a powerful damage dealer and tank at most stages of the game, while offering an overall utility that makes it one of the strongest class options in the 5e system.

The best levels to play the paladin class are between 2nd and 5th Level, when you gain access to the powerful starting abilities and features of the paladin class. At this stage of the game, your character will quite frankly outshine most other party members.

Following 5th Level, the paladin starts to plateau and will dip towards parity with other classes in the game. It has other major power spikes at 9th, 13th, and 17th level as it gains access to high-level spell slots, but nothing will feel quite as broken as that early game domination.

1st Level (Moderate Start)

The paladin starts off with a moderate power level, since they are missing the Spellcasting and Sacred Oath features that will make this class into such a menace at later stages of the game. Playing a one-shot as a 1st-level paladin may be underwhelming, although you do have access to the utility of Lay on Hands immediately.

2nd Level (First Power Spike)

2nd Level is the first major power spike for paladin characters. At this level, you gain access to your 1st Level spells slots and basic class spells. In addition, you get to choose a Fighting Style, which is great for flavor and character direction, and you can start to use Divine Smite.

3rd – 4th Level (First Plateau)

3rd Level is your second major power spike, when paladins gain access to their Sacred Oath Feature and their specific Oath Spells. Although this feature does not add as much raw power as 2nd Level, it is a more satisfying threshold from a flavor perspective and another great point to play a paladin character.

There is a lull on 4th level with no significant improvements, but it still feels very good to play a paladin at this early stage in the game.

5th – 8th Level (Second Plateau)

5th Level is the third major power spike for paladin characters, where they get access to their 2nd level Oath Spells and class spells. While this is significant, the biggest bump at 5th Level is the Extra Attack feature, which immediately ramps up a paladin’s possible damage output.

After the massive spike at 5th Level, the following three levels offer relatively small improvements. This is still a decent level threshold to play a paladin, but it’s mainly the carry-over effects of the massive spike at 5th Level.

9th -12th Level (Third Plateau)

9th Level is the next major power spike for paladin characters, when they get access to their 3rd level Oath Spells and class spells. They also receive a nice little increase to their proficiency bonus. It is probably the weakest of the class’s power spikes on the way to 20.

11th Level is a secondary power spike in this plateau that will provide them with the Improved Divine Smite feature and access to a third 3rd Level spell slot. While not as significant as 9th level, it is another strong threshold to hit and a decent level to be playing at.

The other levels in this plateau do not offer any significant power spikes and these are not great levels to jump into paladin play overall.

13th – 16th Level (Fourth Plateau)

13th Level is the second-to-last major power spike for paladin characters, when they get access to their 4rd level Oath Spells and class spells. Again, they also receive an increase to their proficiency bonus. This is a very similar spike to the 9th Level, although you do get access to more powerful high-level spells.

At this plateau, paladins begin to access some cool end-games features. This includes Cleansing Touch at 14th, which is a great utility feature, and the penultimate level of their Sacred Oath Feature at 15th Level. Both of these are nice thresholds and this is a better plateau overall for paladin players.

17th – 20th Level (Final Plateau)

17th Level is the last major power spike for paladin characters before 20, when they get access to their 5rd level Oath Spells and class spells. These are super powerful, end-game spells and this is a fairly satisfying threshold for paladins.

The plateau between 17 and 20 is a lull spot for paladin players, with no significant improvements for the class.

20th Level offers a final power spike to paladin players, in the form of the ultimate Sacred Oath feature. Almost all of the Oaths offer amazing ultimate abilities that you’ll be excited to try out for the first time, although some are more awesome than others (I’m looking at you, Oath of Devotion). Not all classes offer huge payoff at Level 20, but paladin is definitely up there with the best of them.

Best Races for Paladin

Making sure you’re choosing a race that synergizes with the paladin’s righteous abilities is important. For help selecting the race for your paladin out of the plethora of options, check out our Guide to Paladin Races.

If you’re looking to make a quick choice and using playing with the Basic Rules or Player’s Handbook, Dragonborns stand out as a strong option. With a +1 bonus to Charisma and +2 to Strength, Dragonborn align well with the paladin’s Charisma-focused spellcasting and Strength-focused melee fighting. Additionally, their breath weapon is a solid area-of-effect ability, something paladins don’t get a lot of.


  • Faction Agent: Diverse skills including CHA skills, two languages, and a good amount of starting gp.
  • Mercenary Veteran: Two perfect skills, though they are already on the paladin’s skill list.
  • Soldier: Proficiency with Athletics and Intimidation is certainly a good choice, especially because Intimidation can add to your utility for the party. Proficiency with the gaming set and land vehicles isn’t awesome but could be useful in certain circumstances.
  • Sailor/Pirate: Proficiency in Athletics and Perception are two great choices. Proficiency in water vehicles isn’t awesome but could be useful in certain circumstances.

Pretty much all of the other backgrounds give DEX, WIS, or INT-based Skills which aren’t worth it for paladins. The only WIS-based skill that’s worth proficiency is Perception because of how often it is used.

Ability Scores

Ability Score Increases (ASI) at 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th, and 19th level.

STR: Most paladins go with STR as it lets them wear heavy armor and affects attack and damage rolls. Don’t worry about STR if going for a DEX build.

DEX: DEX is important skill to stack because of the sheer number of instances that a DEX save is required. Paladins can also be built for using DEX weapons, which would make DEX light blue.

CONEvery paladin needs hit points and good CON saving throws to tank for their allies.

INT: This is a big ol’ dump stat for paladins. You don’t need to be smart if you’re righteous, right?

WIS: WIS is helpful for Perception (the most important skill in the game). This stat would be best left to classes that need WIS for other class features (Rangers, Monks, etc.) because paladins are so dependent on their other stats.

CHA: The paladin’s CHA score is a hotly debated topic. The arguments mainly revolve around the question, “do you want to max your damage output?”. If the answer to this question is “yes“, you can feel free to make CHA a lesser priority. If the answer to the question is, “I want to play a well-rounded character that can support my party and also provide help in social situations while being able to output solid damage“, then CHA is going to be really important.

CHA is used as the paladin’s spellcasting modifier, the save DC for Channel Divinity, the bonus to Aura of Protection, and affects how many spells you can prepare each day. If you want to get by on limited spells and just smash people with smites then you likely can make CHA a secondary priority. Otherwise, you will be forgoing a maxed STR, CON, or DEX for CHA.

Paladin Class Progression

1st Level

Hit Points and Hit Dice: d10 hit points is the second-best hit dice around. The only class that gets a higher one is the barbarian. Combine this with a high CON score, Lay On Hands, and heavy armor, this means your paladin will be hard to put down.

Saves: WIS and CHA are great saves to have proficiency in. WIS saves happen a fair bit and the failures usually have nasty effects. CHA saves can keep you from getting banished, but not much else.

Proficiencies: All armor, weapons, and shields? Yes, please.

SkillsAthletics (being the only STR-based skill) is a shoo-in for the paladin’s most important skill if they fight with STR. There are also some CHA skills to choose from that pair nicely with the paladin.

  • Athletics (STR): Perfect for STR-based builds.
  • Insight (WIS): Insight is normally a decent skill, but the paladin will likely not have enough WIS to make it useful.
  • Intimidation (CHA): Paladins should have a decent CHA score to make this work. Choose either this skill or Persuasion.
  • Medicine (WIS)Paladins are often the healer of the group so this fits thematically.
  • Persuasion (CHA): Paladins should have a decent CHA score to make this work. Choose either this skill or Intimidation.
  • Religion (INT): INT is always a dump stat.

Divine Sense – Can prevent an ambush in certain situations, especially if you have low Perception or Insight.

Lay on Hands – One of the best healing mechanisms in the game. Versatile enough to bring a party member up to full health or just give them enough healing to bring them out of Death Saves. Scales with leveling up as well.

2nd Level

Fighting Style: A common class feature between the paladin and other martial classes, like the fighter and ranger. Fighting Style provides a passive boost in combat and is a great reason to multiclass into a paladin.

  • Defense: +1 to AC isn’t overly exciting but seeing as AC is hard to scale it can make a difference in the early and long game.
  • Dueling: Being able to wear a shield while dealing close to two-handed weapon damage with a one-handed weapon is a very, very tempting option.
  • Great Weapon Fighting: Not an awesome option, only adds about 1 damage per attack. It would be better to pick up Defense to make up for the fact you aren’t wielding a shield.
  • Protection: Only being useful when within 5ft is a major disadvantage for this skill, especially if you’re the tank of your party as most of your party members will be staying back while you are up in the fray.

Optional Class Feature: Fighting Style Options: This optional class feature adds to the list of available fighting style options:

  • Blessed Warrior: The best two Cleric cantrips to pick up here are Guidance and Toll the Dead. Guidance is amazing utility and Toll the Dead helps provide a ranged option outside of javelins.
  • Blind Fighting: Blindsight is a powerful ability, there is no doubt about that. If you are a paladin, the reality is that you should be focusing on something that will allow you to hit people harder, or get hit harder without going down.
  • Interception: This is a very similar ability to the Protection fighting style. The same limitations apply (have to be within 5ft, uses your reaction), but you are able to use this ability if you are wielding a weapon or shield, not just a shield. The actual effect is kind of a toss-up when compared to Protection. If you are going to be fighting alongside another melee fighter that has a reasonable AC, the disadvantage granted by Protection is better. If you are going to be mainly defending casters with poor AC, Interception is better.

Spellcasting – Paladins get an interesting mix of healing and buff spells, as well as their signature smites. Most of these spell slots will be reserved for the good ol’ Divine Smite due to its propensity for damage and the ability to cast after hit and stack with crits.

Divine Smite – When playing a paladin, you will notice that you often will be holding on to your meager spell slots for these sweet, sweet smites. Being able to activate the smite on hit, not taking up a bonus action or concentration like the other smites, allows for this to be a significant burst of damage when you want it.

Optional Class Feature: Additional Paladin Spells: The list of additional spells is quite small, but having more options is usually a good thing in D&D. The spells added by this update have been added to the Best Spells for Paladin section.

3rd Level

Divine Health – Very situational. Diseases can also be cured by expending 5 hit points from your Lay on Hands.

Optional Class Feature: Harness Divine PowerThis option offers a ton of versatility on a typical adventuring day. Sometimes you will need your channel divinity options more than spell slots, but when you don’t, you can always use this ability to bring some spells back online.

Sacred Oath: The paladin’s Oath comes with a choice that is more impactful than almost any other class. As with every class’ archetype, the paladin’s Sacred Oath offers customizability and unique features as you level up. Where the paladin class differs, is in the tenets that the paladin binds themselves to as they choose an Oath. While breaking the tenets don’t have any concrete, RAW consequences, paladins that go against their oath can be presented consequences by their DM.

For a more in-depth breakdown of the abilities granted by each oath, check out our Guide to Paladin 5e Subclasses.

  • Oath of Conquest: The Oath of Conquest paladin is all about besting one’s opponents. Their spells and channel divinity options focus on subjection and domination of enemies in combat.
  • Oath of Devotion: The Oath of Devotion paladin is probably what most people think of when they think “paladin”. Oath of Devotion Paladins protect the weak and uphold the justice of the land
  • Oath of Glory: The Oath of Glory paladin believes that they are destined for greatness. These Paladins help others around them accomplish glorious deeds through buffs and supportive class features.
  • Oath of Redemption: The Oath of Redemption paladin is perfect for a pacifist-style player, as all of the spells do not directly do damage. The best way to build this subclass is by getting the highest AC possible to tank damage for your allies. Even if you want to hurt things, the spells here are very powerful and useful, getting access to some of the best spells that paladins normally do not have.
  • Oath of the Ancients: The Oath of the Ancients focuses on upholding the laws of nature and life. These fey knights gain access to a number of nature-based spells and abilities usually reserved for druids and rangers.
  • Oath of the Crown: Oath of the Crown paladins are great for getting the attention off your most vulnerable allies and onto you. Therefore, it’s a good idea to pump their AC and hit points to make them as tanky as possible
  • Oath of the Watchers: Oath of the Watchers paladins specialize in neutralizing extraplanar threats, making their usefulness very dependent on the type of campaign you are playing in.
  • Oath of Vengeance: Vengeance Paladins are for those players that think the best defense is the best offense. If your party already has enough support characters, the Oath of Vengeance is a great option to be the party’s primary damage dealer.
  • Oathbreaker: Oathbreakers turn the typical paladin formula on its head by making them break their oath to serve themselves or an evil power. This makes them both interesting and challenging to role-play, and they come with some powerful abilities to make for a unique take on the class.

4th Level

Optional Class Feature: Martial Versatility: This optional class feature allows paladins to replace a Fighting Style whenever they are granted an ASI. This ability isn’t inherently strong or weak because it is difficult to make strategic changes according to what scenarios you will be facing. Adding this takes nothing away from the game and simply makes it less frustrating if your character isn’t playing how you intended or you discover a new weapon that would change your tactics.

5th Level

Extra Attack: The bread and butter of martial classes. Paladins don’t get as many attacks as a fighter would, but their smites and Spellcasting help make up for it.

6th Level

Aura of Protection – Giving team members a buff to ALL SAVING THROWS is just straight-up great.

Aura increases to 30ft at 18th level.

10th Level

Aura of Courage – Situational but a great effect nonetheless.

Aura increases to 30ft at 18th level.

11th Level

Improved Divine Smite – Helps level out the damage output between paladins and fighters as paladins don’t get as many attacks.

14th Level

Cleansing Touch – There are some nasty spell effects when you get up to 14th level. An at-will, pseudo-dispel magic is an extremely good tool to keep in the pocket.

Best Feats for Paladins

Check out our Guide to Paladin Feats.

Best Spells for Paladins

Check out our Guide to Paladin Spells.

Best Multiclass Options for Paladins

Multiclassing is always an opportunity cost; you have to determine if taking a level of another class is worth what you will lose from the original class. Many factors come into this decision, with the main factor being how long your campaign will run and, ultimately, what level you will be playing until.

Paladins are very Multi-Ability Dependent (MAD), meaning that they rely a lot on several ability scores to be at their best. This means that you should pick a class that has an ability score overlap with the paladin in STR/DEX or CHA.

Bard: A two-level dip into paladin allows a bard to get access to armor/shield/weapon proficiencies, Lay on Hands, and smites. If you’re going for a Valor or Swords Bard, you already gain the proficiencies but the smites are definitely worth it.

Sorcerer: The Sorcadin is considered one of, if not the most powerful multiclass options in D&D 5e. This build allows for an awesome cross between a tank and a caster and allows for insane nova damage. The most common Sorcadin build is paladin 2 / sorcerer 18 which allows you get to get access to armor/shield/weapon proficiencies, Lay on Hands, and smites. Only dipping two levels into paladin restricts access to some nice paladin features like Aura of Protection and extra attacks, but it gives access to high-level Sorcerer spell options, plenty of sorcery points, and the Sorcerer Origin capstone feature.

Warlock: The Bladelock is a notoriously broken multiclass option. If you dip 1 level into warlock and put the rest into paladin you will be able to take the Hexblade subclass and attack using your CHA modifier. This means allows you to make your paladin a lot less Multi-Ability Dependent as you can take 13 in STR to get heavy armor, max your CHA, and put the rest into CON.

Sources Used in This Guide

  • BR: Basic Rules
  • GotG: Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants
  • SotDQ: Dragonlance: Shadow of the Dragon Queen
  • ERLW: Eberron: Rising from the Last War
  • EEPC: Elemental Evil Player’s Companion
  • EGtW: Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount
  • FToD: Fizban's Treasury of Dragon
  • GGtR: Guildmasters' Guide to Ravnica
  • MotM: Monsters of the Multiverse
  • MToF: Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes
  • MOoT: Mythic Odyessys of Theros
  • PAitM: Planescape: Adventures in the Multiverse
  • PHB: Player's Handbook
  • SAiS: Spelljammer: Adventures in Space
  • SCoC: Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos
  • SCAG: Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide
  • TCoE: Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything
  • TTP: The Tortle Package
  • WBtW: The Wild Beyond The Witchlight
  • VRGtR: Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft
  • VGtM: Volo's Guide to Monsters
  • XGtE: Xanathar’s Guide to Everything

Other Paladin Guides

Mike Bernier

Mike Bernier is the lead content writer and founder of Arcane Eye. He is a Adamantine best-selling author of Strixhaven: A Syllabus of Sorcery on DMs Guild and is a contributing author at D&D Beyond. Follow Mike on Twitter.

26 thoughts on “Paladin

    1. Hey Lewis!
      I have added a quick write-up for Command into the article 🙂 Here it is for reference:

      Command (green): Command is an extremely good first level spell. Just based on the spell description provided in the PHB there is a ton of value available, let alone using command words that uniquely benefit your situation. The only issue with Command is the save DC. If your Paladin is pumping CON, STR, and CHA you likely won’t have a particularly good Spell Save DC which could lead to your spell being resisted and you losing a turn more often than not.

    1. Oath of Vengeance is probably the strongest 1v1 fighter out of any other class combination in 5e. If you want to slay baddies, that is the way to go.

  1. At Polearm Mastery you recommend Defense Fighting Style for an insane Combo. Excuse me, but wouldnt Tunnel Fighter be better?
    For your bonus action, you enter a defensive stance until your next turns start. During the stance, you make opportunity attacks without using the reaction, and use the reaction to make a melee weapon attack against any creature that moves more than 5 ft within your reach.
    I just imagine standing there and attacking everything dumb enough to come into reach…

    1. Hey Merlin! At the time of writing, this guide primarily covers the DMG and PHB. You’re definitely right that the Tunnel Fighter combination is extraordinarily strong; this is probably why it is still only playtest content (Unearthed Arcana) and will probably always stay there. In our experience, most tables don’t use UA, so we don’t find it very productive to mention that content in our guides. That being said, if your group has agreed to allow UA content, go for it! ????

  2. I wouldn’t suggest dumping CHA as a paladin, especially if you are a Devotion Paladin. The aura of protection scales on CHA and is one of the most broken feature of a Paladin. When comparing this to STR as a Devotion Paladin in particular, the channel divinity giving a bonus to hit equal to CHA makes it so that increasing CHA does everything STR does except for one damage per attack, which is nothing compared to +1 on saving throws and +1 to spell save DC.

    1. Thanks Evan, you’re right “dumping CHA” was the wrong term, I have fixed that and increased the rating on the Devotion’s Sacred Weapon from green to blue. I agree that pumping CHA enough for spellcasting and aura of protection is important, but after getting CHA to around +3 you have to make a hard decision of whether to invest further or focus on STR/CON.

  3. Is Word of Radiance a descent choice for Blessed Warrior fighting style. I thought that the an AoE cantrip might prove useful.

    1. Certainly useful if you are going to be in the thick of the battle! Hitting 3 or more creatures with this could outpace damage done by attacking, especially if you’ve invested more in CHA than STR.

  4. I feel like the feats description is geared towards Oath of Vengeance, but I am building a Nasty Ravenite Dragonborn Tanky Oath of Conquest Paladin, and I chose to get the dragon Hide for my first feat, I like the bonuses for incase of broken armor and dropped weapon, and still being able to hold a shield for the bonuses, I was thinking of getting Dragon Fear next as it kind of meshes with Conquest oath, then maybe Durable, maybe getting Durable second and dragon fear third… what are your thoughts on such a build?

    1. Thanks for writing in Michael, the build sounds really cool! I absolutely love Dragon Fear for an Oath of Conquest but I’m not a huge fan of Dragon Hide to be honest. I think there aren’t enough mechanics in 5e (besides Rust Monsters) that can destroy weapons or armor to make this feat beneficial to a Paladin.

  5. Hello, I was reading your guides and I think they are awesome. I was wondering if you could add your review of the Paladin: Oath of Heroism found in Unearthed Arcana 62 – Bard and Paladin. It seems to have some similarities to the Oath of Glory, but has some note worthy differenes.

    I think it would be a great addition to this section.


    1. Hi Juan! While we love the Unearthed Arcana content, our main focus for the time being is to review everything from official sources first. We think this will be more valuable to our readers, but we hope to get around to reviewing Unearthed Arcana content in the future for those players who love to experiment!

  6. If you have time, I think it would be worthwhile to add a section for Non-Standard races to the other classes too. It makes no sense to me that the Paladin guide has a section about them and others don’t…

  7. Hey Mark!
    I am new to DnD and I wanted to make a great frog folk paladin build with a lance and shield, is this possible and how could I make this work? Your guide is amazing and extremely detailed which is great for me with much to learn.

    1. Hey Justin! I’m not sure if there is a specific “frogfolk” race but you could reskin another race to be frogfolk (with your DM’s permission of course). I think a decent option for the reskin would be the Harengon race (https://www.dndbeyond.com/races/harengon).

      As for a knight with a lance and shield, you could choose a halberd or glaive and pick up the Polearm Master and Sentinel feats for an extremely potent combo. This combo works because the halberd gives you a 10ft reach, you get opportunity attacks whenever creatures enter your 10ft reach, then, if you hit them with the attack they cannot move forward into melee range. This doesn’t work with a shield but it provides a similar aesthetic and is a very powerful deterrent.

      If you are dead set on using a shield, then choose a spear and the Polearm Master feat as it will still provide tons of value.

      Hope you have fun!

    1. We only add optimal non-standard races to these guides as there are too many to keep track of otherwise. Lizardfolk isn’t great for paladins because WIS is basically pointless and Hungry Jaws doesn’t really benefit typical paladin builds.

  8. I notice that in your description of Holy Nimbus for the oath of devotion you don’t mention anything about the fact that all enemies in 30 feet of your Paladin take 10 radiant damage per round. Doesn’t that account for anything in grading the value of that ability?

    1. The damage was taken into account in the rating for that ability, I’ve edited the text to make that clear. IMO, the ability is going to be useful in combat but isn’t on par with most of the other subclasses’ capstone.

  9. I would’ve thought that getting a few levels in fighter could really buff a paladin, to get an extra fighting style, action surge, and maybe a subclass, Champion for improved critical, Battle Master for their manoeuvres, or other subclasses. A few levels in fighter could really help a Paladin up, as second wind allows you to heal you as a bonus action as well, instead of lay on hands which requires a full action.

    1. Fighter / Paladin multiclass would be pretty fun! It’s a shame you’d have to invest 11 levels into fighter to get more than two attacks per turn though.

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