[RPG] What are all the ways to increase the chance of a critical hit


A natural 20 is a critical hit. Some builds aim for these crits. But how can a player maximize their chance of scoring a crit?

I know a few, some more reliable than others:

  • A champion fighter gets crits on a natural 19-20 (18-20 at level 15).
  • A rogue assassin attacking a surprised creature will auto-crit.
  • A divination wizard can roll a 20 during a rest and spend it on themselves or an ally for a crit.
  • Any advantage of course gives greater chance of getting a 20.

Anything else?

Best Answer

The Player's Handbook lists a few different methods of ensuring critical hits, or at least making them easier to obtain. You mentioned a few of them, but I will include them here as well for completeness.

  • Fighter's Champion archetype (p. 72): grants the "Improved Critical" traits at levels 3 and 15, allowing you to critically hit on 19s and 18s respectively.
  • Rogue's Assassin archetype (p. 97): grants the "Assassinate" feature, which allows you to critically hit on each successful strike performed on a surprised opponent.
  • Wizard's School of Divination (p. 116): grants the "Portent" feature, allowing you to "store" two d20 rolls each day for later use. If one of them is a 20, you can later guarantee a critical hit by you or one of your allies.
  • The Advantage mechanics (p. 173): Any situation granting advantage allows you to roll two d20s for your attack, increasing the odds of getting a 20 (and thus a critical hit).
  • Striking a Paralyzed foe (p. 291): All hits against a paralyzed creature are considered critical hits if the attacker is within 5 feet.
  • Striking an Unconscious foe (p. 292): All hits against an unconscious creature are considered critical hits if the attacker is within 5 feet.

The Dungeon Master's Guide offers another way of achieving similar results.

  • The Moonblade legendary weapon (p. 217) : one of the Moonblade's potential properties (they are rolled randomly) can grant critical hits on a roll of 19 or 20.

More recently, Xanathar's Guide to Everything also adds a few ways to improve your odds of critically striking.

  • Warlock's Hexblade archetype (p. 55): Through the Hexblade's Curse feature, you can critically strike on a 19 or 20 for one minute against a chosen enemy. At level 14, the Master of Hexes feature allows you to transfer this curse to another target, provided it is within 30 feet.
  • The Elven Accuracy racial feat (p. 74): Allows you to reroll one d20 when you attack with advantage using dexterity, intelligence, wisdom or charisma.