[RPG] Which of Blind Sight vs Blind Sense is better?


What is the better ability in D&D 5e: Blind sense or Blind fighting?

Imagine a varient human rogue with the fighters initiate ability and gets blind fighting before level 15. Which ability is better, or do they work well together?

Best Answer

Blindsight is is generally better than blindsense

The rogue's Blindsense ability states that:

If you are able to hear, you are aware of the location of any hidden or invisible creature within 10 feet of you.

Essentially, if there is a creature within 10 feet of you, regardless of how well it is hidden or if it is invisible, you can hear it and you know roughly where it is. Knowing a creature's location means you don't have to guess where it is, but if you can't actually see it that still has consequences; you can't target it with spells that specify a target you can see, you have disadvantage on attacks against it, that kind of thing.

In contrast, the Blind Fighting style states that:

You have blindsight with a range of 10 feet. Within that range, you can effectively see anything that isn’t behind total cover, even if you’re blinded or in darkness. Moreover, you can see an invisible creature within that range, unless the creature successfully hides from you.

For most purposes blindsight is better than just knowing where things are; it is the ability to functionally see within the specified range regardless of any other circumstances. This means you can target spells that require you to see a creature, attack without disadvantage, etc. For the most part that's a straight upgrade on the benefit of Blindsense.

However, there are a couple of things Blindsense can do which blindsight cannot. Blindsight is effectively blocked by total cover, but Blindsense isn't; as written, the rogue can hear enemies even behind walls and other such obstacles. Blindsight is also defeated by stealth, whereas Blindsense alerts you to creatures even if they have successfully hidden.

If you intend to be fighting in the dark a lot (or you fight a lot of invisible creatures), and you don't otherwise have any way to see in darkness (or see invisible things), you won't want to give up your blindsight once you get Blindsense. You need to be able to reliably negate the disadvantage you would get on attacks, otherwise you'll have a hard time triggering your Sneak Attack.