Stat Boosts and Flaws (5e Variant Rule)

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Stat Boosts and Flaws[edit]

Stat Boosts and Flaws is a different way to generate stats, based on Pathfinder 2nd Edition's method, modified for 5e.

A character starts with a 10 in every stat, with a series of boosts and flaws from different parts of their origin to change those stats. A boost adds a +2 up to 18, or a +1 after. Flaws are always a -2. In addition to the boosts and flaws listed in the changes below, each character gets 4 free boosts which they can apply to 4 different stats.

Changes to Races[edit]

By default in 5e, most races have 2 bonuses to individual stats, typically a +2 and a +1. I shall call these fixed-bonus races. Any fixed-bonus race will have a boost in each of the stats the race would normally boost. For instance, a High Elf normally gets a +2 in Dexterity and a +1 in Intelligence, however with this change, they would get a boost to both dexterity and intelligence. In addition, these types of races give the character 1 free bonus, to go in any stat not boosted by the race already.

Non-fixed-bonus races will have different rules depending on their setup, determined by the DM. See the Suggested Race Bonuses and Flaws table below for suggestions.

Most races in this system also gives the character a flaw. This must be determined race-by-race, as races don't by default have detrimental stat adjustments anymore. If the DM prefers, they may give a flaw to any race which does not have one. Note: with this rule, you should use the Variant Human rule from the Player's Handbook.

Suggested Race Boosts and Flaws[edit]

These boosts and flaws are based on 3.5e's and Pathfinder 2's rules, as well as 5e lore.

Race Boosts Flaws
Dwarf Constitution, one determined by subclass, one free Charisma
Elf Dexterity, one determined by subclass, one free Constitution
Gnome Intelligence, one determined by subclass, one free Strength
Half-Elf Charisma, two free Constitution
Halfling Dexterity, one determined by subclass, one free Strength
Half-Orc Strength, two free Intelligence
Human Two free None
Dragonborn Strength, Charisma, one free Wisdom

Changes to Backgrounds[edit]

Each background will give a choice between 2 stats to boost. This will generally be 2 of the stats which the background gives proficiency in skills from. For instance, Charlatan's would be Charisma and Dexterity. If the background gives no skill proficiencies, or all skills come from one stat, that background's boosts must be determined by the DM. In addition, any background gives one free boost to go into any stat.


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