[RPG] What are the implications of the UA warforged’s “Living Construct” trait?


This question is about the warforged race presented in Unearthed Arcana: Eberron.

Based on this Tweet, by Mike Mearls I understand that a Warforged unit is a 'Living Construct':

cure wounds works on [warforged], stuff that works on living or construct works on them

This goes to say it has both the 'Living' and 'Construct' creature tag (if living was a tag). This means cure wounds does not work on constructs by themselves, but it does work on living creatures. Since Warforged also count as living, this makes them legal targets for cure wounds.

If it is affected by things that affect both living creatures and/or construct creatures; they have both the strength and weaknesses of both. What are the full implications of this?

Best Answer

The only 5e rules we have for Eberron are from the Unearthed Arcana article from February of 2015, and they class Warforged as Living Constructs.

To quote from the PDF:

Living Construct. Even though you were constructed, you are a living creature. You are immune to disease. You do not need to eat or breathe, but you can ingest food and drink if you wish. Instead of sleeping, you enter an inactive state for 4 hours each day. You do not dream in this state; you are fully aware of your surroundings and notice approaching enemies and other events as normal.

Even though you were constructed, you are a living creature.

Baring an official ruling, this line indicates to me that aside from explicitly called out exceptions in the Living Construct block, you function exactly as a living being.

In fact, since nothing calls out Warforged in 5e having the Construct type, but rather Living Construct as a distinct type with rules differing from Constructs, and given the specificity of rulings on other things (such as, Can you sneak attack with a spell), I would say that you can't actually affect a Warforged in 5e with something that affects Constructs but NOT living creatures.

So, short version, Living Constructs aren't treated as Constructs, Healing spells work normally on them.

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