Water Genasi Guide 5e

Published on December 27, 2022

If your campaign is heading underwater, you’ll be glad you built a character around the aquatic water genasi.

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What is this guide?

This guide is meant to give you an idea of whether or not the water genasi will be right for your 5e character build.

The color code below has been implemented to help you identify, at a glance, how good that option will be for your water genasi. 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.

  • Black is a trait shared by many races and or will not impact the effectiveness of your character build
  • Red isn’t going to contribute to the effectiveness of your character build at all
  • Orange Situationally good, but a below-average option otherwise
  • 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

Tasha's Cauldron of Everything Update

Tasha's Cauldron of Everything has added the "Customizing Your Origin" option that may affect the ability score increases, languages, and proficiencies in this guide. To read more about this, visit our D&D Race Guide.

What are Water Genasi in 5e?

Source: Player's Handbook

Water genasi are a race of humanoid beings who descended from marids, aquatic genies from the Elemental Plane of Water. They boast water-based abilities and traits, allowing them to completely adapt to underwater survival. They typically have green and blue skin and hair that resembles seaweed.

Water genasi are known for having strong ties to water, both physically and spiritually. This can manifest in a variety of ways, ranging from water manipulation abilities to an intuitive connection with water-based environments.

Water Genasi 5e Traits

Size: Being able to choose between Small and Medium allows you to fine-tune your build. Looking to go for a heavy weapon-weilding barbarian? Medium is the way to go. Wanting to lean a bit more to the stealthy side of things? Small size might be right for you.

Darkvision: Darkvision is always great, but its advantage can be ruined if your party members do not also have it.

Acid Resistance: A damage resistance never hurts, but acid will be relatively uncommon.

Amphibious: Breathing air and water goes well with your swimming speed. If you’re ever caught underwater, you won’t be at the same disadvantage as surface-dwellers.

Call to the Wave: Unfortunately, acid splash, create and destroy water, and water walk are all subpar, situational spells.

Which 5e Classes Work With Water Genasi?

Beyond some underwater abilities, water genasi don’t bring much to the table. They are best suited to campaigns based around water where you’ll be able to use your aquatic abilities.

Artificer: Not much here beyond a couple situational spells.

Barbarian: Another resistance is nice, but acid damage won't come up often.

Bard: Unless your campaign is strictly based around water, there's not much for bards here.

Cleric: Not much here beyond a couple situational spells.

Druid: Most of the water genasi's unique abilities can be replicated by the druid's wild shape by 5th level, so this is a hard pass.

Fighter: The damage resistance is nice to help you tank, but acid damage won't come up often.

Monk: Not much here for monks beyond the resistance to acid and some situational aquatic abilities.

Paladin: The damage resistance is nice to help you tank, but acid damage won't come up often.

Ranger: The water genasi's aquatic abilities could be helpful when you're scouting areas with water.

Rogue: The water genasi's aquatic abilities could be helpful when you're infiltrating areas with water.

Sorcerer: Nothing here for a sorcerer.

Warlock: Nothing here for a warlock.

Wizard: Nothing here for a wizard.

Sources Used in This Guide

Mike Bernier

Mike Bernier is the lead content writer and founder of Arcane Eye. Outside of writing for Arcane Eye, Mike spends most of his time playing games, hiking with his girlfriend, and tending the veritable jungle of houseplants that have invaded his house. He is the author of Escape from Mt. Balefor and The Heroes of Karatheon. Mike specializes in character creation guides for players, homebrewed mechanics and tips for DMs, and one-shots with unique settings and scenarios. Follow Mike on Twitter.

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