The search for perfection is a task beheld by many Monks and Wizards in Dungeons & Dragons 5E. The Vedalken, introduced in the Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica, embrace the imperfections within mortals. They see any mistakes as chances to grow, and the endless march towards perfection is what makes their long lives worth living. Are these amphibious, blue creatures worth trying in your campaign? Check them out in our Vedalken 5E guide!
Vedalken 5E Lore
The Vedalken are slightly taller than humans, and live for a massive 500 years. Their hairless, earless, flat-nosed blue bodies might seem strange to most races. However, they see their bodies as something that they can improve, much like their personalities or knowledge.
Vedalken are naturally rational. They form close friendships based on intelligent thoughts, like memorable debates or enticing opinions. These friendships are very close to their hearts, but it is hard (if impossible) for a Vedalken to feel intense feelings or show any emotion of significance. This gives many the opinion that they are cold people, which isn’t entirely fair; they still have emotions, they’re just masters at masking them. They also tend to be reason-oriented, which isn’t far off many intelligent races.
This intelligence makes them prime candidates for meritocracies, wizard schools, teaching careers, research committees, and more. In Ravnica, they often join the Azorius Senate, the Simic Combine, and the Izzet league. Wherever they are employed, they always craft and improve things, whether it be gadgets, laws, or people.
The path towards perfection is paved with education, deliberation, and experimentation. They take improvement in the most scientific direction possible, and consider hard showmanship of emotion to be a flaw; one removed from their personalities close to birth. Through these little experiments, whether it be physical augmentation, the use of psychic therapy, or extensive study, they will perfect themselves and the society that they live in. Whether this drive to perfection leads to mistakes or new flaws… That’s for the dice to decide.
Vedalken names are given at birth, and give themselves a new name once they reach adulthood. These names tend to have one to two syllables, but have a wide variety of consonants and vowels; like their lives, Vedalken and their parents experiment with many different things for their names. Some examples include Aglar, Barvisa, Firellan, Hallia, Modar, Nedress, Nitt, Roya, Trivaz, and Yaraghiya.
On your search for perfection, there is only one stat block for you to consider. Without DM permission, the Vedalken have these racial stats and nothing more.
- +2 Intelligence, +1 Wisdom. Well… This stinks. Intelligence is a rather niche stat, influencing the rarely-used Intelligence save and some alright skill checks. Wisdom is another mental save, but is more useful in general; Wisdom saves are often targeted, and Wisdom is used for Perception, the most rolled skill in the game. The problem is, no class that really wants Intelligence or Wisdom needs the other mental skill. Not a great combo, but does allow for some weird options.
- Medium Size, 30 ft Speed. The standard spread. You’re not going to be better or worse than a human here. However, do remember that Vedalken are pretty tall, standing 6 feet tall! That might be useful in specific situations, like reaching something just barely out of reach of a human. Not critical, but good to keep in mind.
- Vedalken Dispassion. Watch out, Gnomes! This is the same ability as Gnome Cunning, and is just as strong. You’ll have a big advantage in magical duels, and a lot of the most dangerous spells target Wisdom and take control of your turn. So, the ability to roll twice on those saves can save not just your life, but the life of your party.
- Tireless Precision. This is really, really cool! You get to choose an ability to add an average of 2.5 to. That’s… Really strong! Unfortunately, your list of skills aren’t amazing. Understandably, you have a lot of Intelligence-based skills, but that means you have a lot of niche skills. You could take Sleight of Hand and Thieves’ Tools and become the group lockpicker… But that’s probably not a great idea for a Wizard. This is really up to you, but Medicine and Sleight of Hand are probably the most useful options, as well as Thieves’ Tools.
- Partially Amphibious. This is a fun skill, and lets you become the guy who leaps into water to search for loot. However, it’s not long enough for a full-water campaign viability. This is a very niche, not too useful skill that you shouldn’t consider too much. On the bright side, you’re a lot harder to drown, which… I mean, I hope you never have to worry about it, but it’s here!
- Languages. Vedalken is, obviously, meant for Vedalken to speak to each other. The bonus language is actually useful! Talk to your DM, or go for a generally useful language. Some examples include Draconic, Sylvan, Dwarven, Giant, or Elven.
The Vedalken is definitely shoved into a particular niche for it’s optimal class structures, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t without any choices. If you want to be optimal, however… Well, it’s between four.
Good Classes for Vedalken
- Artificer. Vedalken are insane artificers. You get the +2 Intelligence, which is honestly all they will ever need. The Wisdom is partially wasted, but Wisdom is a good defensive stat. Then, you’re really good with your Artificer tool, you are impossible to mind control… That’s great! Especially if you’re building a tank, which should be a reliable wall for the party.
- Cleric. Sure! The Intelligence might not be the best idea, but all the more reason to go for the Knowledge Domain, I guess! The Wisdom bump is important, but much more important is Vedalken Dispassion, which will keep you in the fight for a long time. Clerics don’t really need the cool Tireless Precision tool, but hey, you won’t need quite as many spells.
- Druid. Another kind of weird one, but possibly fun to work with. The Intelligence will almost certainly be completely wasted here, since it’s not much of a defensive stat. However, turning into a Mammoth just to immediately get mind controlled is not fun, and Vedalken Dispassion will help you out. Tireless Precision is also more useful here than for Clerics, since the Druid spell list is more specialized and aggressive (most of the time).
- Wizard. A great choice. Your Intelligence is insane, Wisdom isn’t bad for a Wizard to have, and you’re really good at mental saves. That vastly improves your Caster dueling capabilities! Tireless Precision might not be great on Wizard either, but it might save you a spell slot to do things with your hands instead of your magic. Really great and fun combo, honestly!
Bad Classes for Vedalken
- Barbarian. The Vedalken are a studious race. They are not going to be able to wield a greataxe well. Admittedly, the ability to roll twice on mental saves is enticing, but not enticing enough to ignore the Strength.
- Bard. An unnecessary class combo. The bard is already pretty stellar at skills, so you don’t need Tireless Precision. You also don’t have Charisma, reducing the power of your spells and magic. Cleric does the job well enough.
- Fighter. No Strength, no Dexterity… You’re going to be very far behind the damage curve, which is the big reason to play a fighter. The utility of the Vedalken is good for the Fighter, but not good enough to make your low damage and relatively low HP work.
- Monk. You do have +1 Wisdom, so you could technically make Astral Self work… But that’s no way to play a monk. You really need Dexterity to make Monk even somewhat playable.
- Paladin. Without an increase to Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution, the Paladin is not going to be exceptionally useful. Aura of Protection does combo a little bit with your Dispassion to give you basically invulnerability to any mental attacks, but that’s about the only piece of usefulness you have.
- Ranger. You do have a Wisdom increase, but the Ranger is so much more reliant on Dexterity. Your Precision is nice for the Ranger to help it keep up with the Rogue in terms of skills, but your lower damage makes this class even harder to use than it is.
- Rogue. Rogue’s don’t really need Precision, though Dispassion is super nice for them. Still, your low Dexterity will be a problem… Though perhaps you can make an Eldritch Trickster work, if you really want to make this work. Your Expertise skill will literally destroy any DC you’d want.
- Sorcerer. Why be a sorcerer when your Wizard is so dang good? The Sorcerer does have a different role than the Wizard, but… Geez, the loss in spell efficiency is just too much!
- Warlock. Warlock and Artificer fill a somewhat similar role, so you should really consider Artificer. You’re going to be down 1 on your spell attack rolls and DCs, and Warlock really likes Charisma. Arguably more than Sorcerer!
Vedalken are some of the strongest Intelligence casters in the game. Unfortunately, their bonus to Wisdom limits their chances of trying out classes like Eldritch Knight. However, it is quite apt that a Wizard be one of the creatures looking for perfection, or an Arcanist tries to tinker with their own bodies to find improvements. Try them out for your next smart fellow!