[RPG] How clever is a base Intelligence of 10 in D&D 4e


I'm playing my first ever D&D character and he has an intelligence of 10. Several members of the party have higher intelligence (the mage, etc). Is my character supposed to be a bit stupid? Or is he normal while the others are super smart?

Assuming a real world IQ of 100 is average (supposedly IQ is calibrated that way), is an in-game intelligence of 10 equivalent to an IQ of 100? i.e. a normal person you'd meet on the street who's perfectly capable of thinking but not an academic genius?

If 10 is normal, that'd be easier to play, as I can reasonably assume that most thing's I'd think of, he'd think of. 🙂

Edit: Thanks for all the answers. For those who asked the Character is a Half-Elf Fighter.

Best Answer

In D&D, normal people are traditionally considered to be based around a 3d6 roll for each stat. This is somewhat complicated in newer editions by addition of standard arrays and whatnot, but they all stem from that historical assumption. But that means that Joe Blow on the street has a 10.5 in his stats, plus racial adjustments. The 4e PHB says "A score of 10 or 11 is the normal human average, but player characters are a cut above average in most abilities." So 10 is just a hair below the average, but it's not dumb - it's a C student type of person. Not clever but not "slow" in any way. If you wanted to base INT 10 = IQ 100 and then say maybe 2 stat points per 10 IQ points up and down from there, you'll get the general idea.

Adventurers have better stats than that - 4d6, point buys, whatnot all end up averaging way over 10. But I'm not sure you'd be dumber than the average adventurer, just because many character classes really dump stats like INT.