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12 Best Fighter Subclasses 5E [Define Your Battlefield Role]

Best Fighter Subclass 5e
  Written By: Ashish Arya
Updated On: 01/09/2024
Est. Reading: 5 minutes

As a player of Dungeons and Dragons, you understand the importance of choosing a potent fighter subclass to enhance your gaming experience.

With the wide assortment of intriguing options, it can be daunting to pick out one that suits your preferred style of play best.

This article highlights the 12 best fighter subclasses in D&D fifth edition (5e) that you can consider for your next epic adventure.

Consider this as your comprehensive guide to finding a fighter subclass that resonates with your strategic gameplay, rich role-playing opportunities, and overall gaming preferences.

Whether you’re an experienced campaigner or just starting on your journey through fantasy realms, understanding these exceptional fighter subclasses will give an edge to how you navigate this immersive, spellbinding world.

Best Fighter Subclasses 5e

When playing D&D 5e, choosing a fighter subclass significantly influences your combat abilities and approach.

Best Fighter Subclass 5e

Each subclass comes with unique features that set them apart, therefore offering differently engaging play experiences. Below, we explore six of the best fighter subclasses in D&D 5e.


The Champion subclass stands out for its simplicity and raw physical prowess. Accessing the ‘Improved Critical’ feature from this route considerably boosts your character’s melee capabilities.

The sustained damage output of a Champion can give an advantage during prolonged encounters.

This subclass also focuses on boosting physical attributes through its ‘Remarkable Athlete’ feature which enhances strength, dexterity, and constitution-based checks.

Stand toe-to-toe with some of the deadliest foes in your campaign as the Champion.

Also Read: Ascendant Dragon Monk Subclass [How To Play In DnD 5E]


Choosing Battlemasters affords you versatility on the battlefield because they come equipped with access to maneuver options.


This array of maneuvers grants your character tactical flexibility that can swing battles your way by influencing opponents’ actions or improving allies’ attacks.

Battlemasters boast a solid balance between offense and utility, making them excellent additions to any party composition.

Lean into developing charismatic leadership traits for an engaging role-playing experience.

Eldritch Knight

For players looking for a blend of magical prowess and martial might, look no further than the Eldritch Knight subclass.

With access to spells from the wizard spell list, you can amplify your combat capabilities while also unlocking utility magic that broadens how you interact with your gaming environment both in and out of combat scenarios.


Samurais are central to delivering high burst damage thanks to their ‘Fighting Spirit’ feature which gives you an advantage on attack rolls an obvious boon during crucial moments in fights.


They’re one of the few subclasses that provide significant social interaction benefits due to their class feature ‘Elegant Courtier’.

The stoic resolve characteristic of Samurais offers a rich theme for role-playing.

Arcane Archer

Bow-wielding characters have never been more fun with the Arcane Archer subclass. It harnesses the power of arcane magic to transform your ordinary arrows into potent magical projectiles.

You get to select from different Arcane Shot options, which add various magical effects to your attacks.

Besides supplementing damage, these shots offer good control abilities such as banishing foes or putting them to sleep.


The Zealot subclass is for the religiously fervent warriors wielding divine might alongside their weaponry.


Zealots deal extra damage thanks to their ‘Divine Fury’ feature, making them terrific front-line warriors.

Being hardier than most, they even negate death temporarily with their ‘Rage Beyond Death’ feature a handy tool when things go awry in fights.

As devout crusaders, they offer an appealing narrative for your character’s relationship with deities in your campaign’s setting.


Kenseis are warriors who treat weaponry as an extension of their bodies. They add a touch of monk to the traditional fighter class, offering flexibility with weapon choices, including ranged attacks.

Path of the Kensei allows you to choose your weapons and improve them over time, making you more effective in combat.

There’s an element of defense with the ‘Agile Parry’ feature which provides a much-needed armor class boost when fighting unarmed or with a kensei weapon. Kenseis opens up a balance between weapon proficiency and agility.

Also Read: Monk 5E In D&D [Class Features, Subclasses, And Strategies]

Rune Knight

Drawing upon ancient knowledge passed down through generations, Rune Knights merge their martial prowess with magical rune inscriptions to create formidable fighters on the battlefield.

Rune Knight

You gain access to various rune powers offering not only combat prowess but also skill advantages and unique utility abilities like dark vision or bonuses to certain skill checks.

Giants’ Might feature that scales your size to even greater heights enhances physical strength in battle impressively.

Echo Knight

The fascinating Echo Knight allows you to manipulate time itself somewhat by creating an echo of yourself on the battlefield, enhancing action economy, and enabling unconventional tactical maneuvers all potent advantages during combat encounters.

This shadowy duplicate grants extra attacks acts as a damage shield, and even provides teleportation options.

No doubt mastering their unusual mechanic can prove extremely valuable on D&D 5e battlefields.

Sun Soul Monk

Those who wish to keep adversaries at bay will find Sun Soul Monks appealing for their range focus courtesy of the Radiant Sun Bolt feature which lets you hurl radiant energy from afar.

Sun Soul Monk

Also augmenting your damage output is Searing Arc Strike where you integrate area-of-effect magic into your martial arts.

What makes this subclass interesting is that it isn’t tied down to being just ranged or melee – it’s equally capable in both regards, proving its well-rounded nature.

Way of the Open-Hand Monk

A solid choice for control-focused fighters, Way of the Open Hand Monks are masters of martial arts, improving the core Monk class’s Flurry of Blows.

They can manipulate opponents through the Open Hand Technique that ushers in extensive control over enemy positioning and capabilities.

It also extends your unarmed strike benefits early in the game and provides a complete self-healing ability in Wholeness of Body.

This subclass offers a perfect blend of offensive and defensive strategies.

Also Read: Way of The Long Death Monk Subclass [Mastery Over Life And Death]


Cavalier is everyone’s dream knight in shining armor.


Dedicated protectors, Cavaliers excel at defending allies and locking down enemies as a premier ‘Tank’ choice courtesy of their Unwavering Mark feature a terrific solution to keep opponents focused on you and not your less-hardy teammates.

Your horsemanship abilities are also enhanced by Born to the Saddle talent giving you immense battlefield mobility whether riding or not. Their niche design creates an iconic D&D knightly figure experience.

FAQs About Fighter Subclass 5e

What do fighter subclasses offer in D&D 5e?

Fighter subclasses improve upon the base characteristics of the fighter class, offering unique abilities and advantages that add layers of strategic gameplay and role-playing opportunities.

Can I change my fighter subclass once it’s been chosen in D&D 5e?

Standard rules don’t usually allow for changing subclasses once chosen. However, some Dungeon Masters may allow it within their discretion as part of character development or storyline.

When can I choose a subclass for my fighter character in D&D 5e?

You get to choose a subclass at level 3 for your fighter character. This represents a significant milestone and an enhancement of your character’s abilities.

Are all classes equally powerful in D&D 5e?

Each class/subclass has its strengths depending on the situations they encounter and how well you play them. Choosing a class should consider how its defining features align with your preferred style of play.

What’s the easiest fighter subclass to play for beginners in D&D 5e?

The Champion is considered a straightforward choice for beginners as it focuses on enhancing basic fighting skills and does not introduce complex mechanics such as spells or tactical maneuvers.


  • Ashish Arya

    I'm a tech enthusiast and lifelong gamer, hailing from the beautiful city of Chandigarh. My passions range from immersing myself in worlds like GTA V, COD, SIMS, Roblox and Minecraft to exploring the latest innovations in laptops and technology. Armed with a Bachelors Degree in Computer Application, I love sharing my insights through writing and engaging with fellow enthusiasts. Join me on my journey through the ever-evolving realms of gaming and tech!