What is a Finesse Weapon in D&D 5e?

What is a Finesse Weapon in D&D 5e?

You can use your Dexterity modifier to determine damage and attack bonuses for weapons with the Finesse property. Finesse weapons with the “Thrown” property can also be used to attack and damage roll Dexterity.

You’ll see that many weapons have special properties if you take a look at Chapter 5’s equipment section. One of these special properties is “Finesse”, which can be found on some weapons.

Finesse weapons are favored by Dex-based characters like Rogues, which is a good thing.

A level 1 fighter might like to compare a longsword (d8 harm, no finesse), to a rapier with d8 damage and finesse. The fighter receives a +2 proficiency bonus that applies to attack but not damage.

The longsword gives the fighter +3 to hit (+1 strength, +2 proficiency), and does d8+1 harm.

The rapier gives the fighter +5 to hit (+3 dex, +2 proficiency), and does d8+3 damages.

The rapier is clearly the better option. Although theoretically, the fighter could use STR to rapier damage and attacks, it doesn’t make sense here.

A limited number of 5e finesse weapons are available. They do less damage (on average, 1 or 2 points) than non-finesse weapon.

See also
Shadow Blade: D&D 5e Spell Guide

Finesse weapons lack the same properties as some 5e weapons, like Reach and Heavy. This is why they are well-suited for the Great Weapon Master Feat.

Here’s a list of 5e’s finesse weapons:

  • Dagger
  • Dart
  • Rapier
  • Scimitar
  • Shortsword
  • Whip

Here are some tips for characters who have mastered the use of martial weapons.

Use the Rapier to wield only one weapon .
You can use two weapons if you have shortswords and scimitars.
A whip is the best tool to melee strike from 10′ range.
You’re better off using a crossbow or longbow if you want to strike from the range.

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