Pack Tactics 5E: Causing Trouble with Friends

Pack tactics is one of the most common monster features available in 5E. While this feature is typically used by Kobolds, there are many other monsters that also use Pack Tactics. While not overpowered, the use of this ability could result in much higher average attack rolls due to rolling with advantage. See our Pack Tactics 5E Guide to learn more about this monster feature.

How Do Pack Tactics Work?

D&D Pack tactics
Pack Tactics
Pack Tactics. The attacking creature has advantage on an attack roll against a creature if at least one of the attacking creature’s allies is within 5 feet of the creature and the ally isn’t incapacitated..

The key aspect of pack tactics is that it is an opportunity for creatures to gain advantage on an attack roll when allies are nearby. This rule works in similar ways to the optional flanking rules. So long as a creature with pack tactics is making an attack roll, and one of their allies is within five feet of the target, that attack is made with advantage. This is true whether or not the ally has the Pack Tactics ability. However, multiple enemies that each have pack tactics can quickly turn the tide in a fight, given that attacking with advantage is a powerful option.

What Creatures Have Pack Tactics?

There are a number of monsters that have the Pack Tactics attribute. They include:

  • Ambush Drake
  • Animated Glass Statue
  • Baboon
  • Blood Hawk
  • Chimeric Baboon
  • Clawfoot
  • Dire Wolf
  • Diseased Giant Rat
  • Flying Monkey
  • Giant Rat
  • Guardian Wolf
  • Hyena
  • Jackal
  • Kobold
  • Reef Shark
  • Reghed Warrior
  • Setessan Hoplite
  • Thug
  • Tooth-N-Claw
  • Tribal Warrior
  • Velociraptor
  • Vulture
  • Winged Kobold
  • Wolf
  • Young Kruthik
  • Zhentarim Thug

Is Pack Tactics Melee Only?

Pack tactics is not melee only. As the ability text makes clear, a creature gains advantage on any attack roll when an ally is within 5e feet of the target. Specifying an attack roll instead of a melee attack should settle this issue. If you’re still not convinced, this Tweet from Jeremy Crawford confirms a creature with Pack Tactics gains advantage on a ranged attack as long as an ally is within 5 feet of the target.

Does Echo Knight Trigger Pack Tactics?

When playing an Echo Knight, the echo does not trigger a creature’s Pack Tactics ability. This is because Pack Tactics only activates when an allied creature is within 5 feet of the target. The echo is not considered an ally, because it is not a creature at all.

Do Werewolves Have Pack Tactics in 5E?

No, werewolves do not have pack tactics in 5E. Pack tactics is not listed among their abilities, meaning that they do not gain advantage when attacking a target that has an ally near it. Giving werewolves Pack Tactics would have made sense from a lore standpoint, however.

Concluding our 5E Pack Tactics Guide

That wraps up our breakdown of pack tactics in D&D. Pack Tactics is hands down one of the most common creature abilities throughout all of 5E. When facing multiple monsters with Pack Tactics, you could quickly find yourself overwhelmed. For DMs, that might be a welcome addition to the arsenal.

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