D&D 5E 5E Survivor - Subclasses (Part VII: Monks)

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
There's well over a hundred and twenty different classes and subclasses in the 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons game, and we're on a mission to determine which one is the Survivor! And this time around, we are comparing all of the Monk subclasses from all of the Wizards of the Coast game resources against each other. The Survivor of this round will advance to the final round, where it will face off against the champions of all other character classes.

(Yes, I know that we've done this before, but lots of new subclasses have been released in the years since. It's time to see if the new students can beat their PHB masters.)

SURVIVOR: 5E CHARACTER CLASSES
Round VII: The Monk


This week, we are going to examine all of the subclass options for the Monk class, in 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons. Right now there are eleven subclasses available for the Monk, and we're going to find out which one Survives!

The winner of this contest will advance to the Final Round, where it will represent ALL Monks in the 5th Edition D&D game.

The Hall of Heroes
Round I, Artificers: Battle Smith
Round II, Barbarians: Totem Warrior
Round III, Bards: College of Lore
Round IV, Clerics: Tempest Domain
Round V, Druids: Circle of the Shepherd
Round VI, Fighters: Battle Master

The Rules and Stuff
  • In this round, only the Monk subclasses are presented.
  • Only the subclasses written by Wizards of the Coast qualify. No third-party entries!
  • Each entry starts with 20 points.
  • Every day, you vote for one subclass that you like, which gains 1 point. And then you vote for a different subclass, which loses 2 points. It is intentional that a negative vote is worth more than a positive vote - first, because it takes something extra to whittle these guys down to size. Second, because.
  • Mark your upvotes in green, and downvotes in red. Or just show them in bold text and use "+1" and "-2" to mark them, if colored text is too difficult on your browsing device.
  • It's easier if you just copy and paste the previous poster’s vote and change the numbers; the Quote function isn't the best for this.
  • You may vote only once per day in each category. This is an honor system, and we are all honorable gamers; please do not abuse it. If this means you vote once at night one day, and once the next morning - that's fine, but don't vote again until the following day. Rule of thumb: if your most recent vote post says "yesterday" in the time stamp, you can vote again.
  • This is just another Internet popularity contest and you do not have to explain an upvote or downvote, but feel free to--explanations are where the fun is! And the more outlandish, petty, or nitpicky your reasons for voting, the better!
  • When downvotes reach 0 the subclass is removed from the list.
  • Finally, if an entry has one point left, then you have to make the choice to use all of your downvotes to eliminate it; there is no vote splitting. In addition, you can't upvote and downvote the same entry (no "see" votes). And you have to use BOTH YOUR UPVOTE AND DOWNVOTE if you vote.

The Most Important Bits
Three important points that you must read before voting--
  1. This is a pure popularity contest, and is meant to be fun. You can cast your votes for whatever reason you want; spite, malice, favorite weapon, belt degree, presence or absence of nunchuck skills, strategic voting, and so on are all perfectly acceptable. But this is for enjoyment only. If you experience anger, hostility, or other evidence of Not Having Fun, you are doing it wrong.
  2. This week (and the next few weeks to come) will feature a list of character subclasses from the Player's Handbook, the Dungeon Master's Guide, Xanathar's Guide to Everything, Tasha's Cauldron of Everything, Unearthed Arcana, The Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide, and other places. Only the subclasses written and published by Wizards of the Coast are included.
  3. As always, the list is the list. If you have a complaint about the list, please direct it to /dev/null.
So. Onward to the contest!

MONK SUBCLASSES
=====================================

Ascendant Dragon (Fizban's Treasury of Dragons)
Astral Self (Tasha's Cauldron of Everything)
Drunken Master (Xanathar's Guide to Everything)
Four Elements (Player's Handbook)
Kensai (Xanathar's Guide to Everything)
Long Death (Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide)
Mercy (Tasha's Cauldron of Everything)
Open Hand (Player's Handbook)
Shadow (Player's Handbook)
Sun Soul (Xanathar's Guide to Everything)
Tranquility (Unearthed Arcana, "Monk," 2016)
 
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CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Ascendant Dragon 20
Astral Self 20
Drunken Master 20-2=18 More cliché than character.
Four Elements 20
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 20
Open Hand 20
Shadow 20+1=21 Here's a nickel, get yourself a real assassin.
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20
 
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RoughCoronet0

Dragon Lover
Ascendant Dragon 20
Astral Self 20+1=21
Drunken Master 18
Four Elements 20
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 20
Open Hand 20-2=18
Shadow 21
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20
 

JEB

Legend
Ascendant Dragon 20
Astral Self 21
Drunken Master 18
Four Elements 20
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 20 - 2 = 18
Open Hand 18+1 = 19

Shadow 21
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20
 



Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 21 + 1 = 22
Drunken Master 19
Four Elements 20 - 2 = 18
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 18
Open Hand 19
Shadow 21
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20
 

Aldarc

Legend
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 22
Drunken Master 19
Four Elements 18
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 18-2 = 16
Open Hand 19
Shadow 21+1 = 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20
 

Lycurgon

Adventurer
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 22 + 1 = 23 While Shadow will win this one, I want this to at least give it a little competition
Drunken Master 19
Four Elements 18
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 16
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 20 - 2 =18 I was going to downvote 4 Elements because it is badly designed, but this is a failed experiment from 6 years ago. Even WofC consider it long dead
 
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Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 24
Drunken Master 19
Four Elements 18
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 16
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 24
Drunken Master 20 - Jackie Chan for the win
Four Elements 18
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 14
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Ascendant Dragon 19 ah, the right way to do Dragonborn breath attacks even if it's just 2d4 dmg
Astral Self 24
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16 your most exciting feature is your cantrip, because it doesn't burn all of your Ki
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 14
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Skayaq

Explorer
Ascendant Dragon 20 who doesn't want to be a dragon?
Astral Self 22 we do not stand with this

Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 20
Long Death 20
Mercy 14
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Argyle King

Legend
Ascendant Dragon 20 - 2 = 18
Astral Self 22
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 20 + 1 = 21
Long Death 20
Mercy 14
Open Hand 19
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Plaguescarred

D&D Playtester for WoTC since 2012
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 22
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 21
Long Death 20
Mercy 12
Open Hand 20

Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

Dax Doomslayer

Adventurer
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 20
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 22
Long Death 20
Mercy 12
Open Hand 20
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 16
 

chrisrtld

Adventurer
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 20
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 22
Long Death 20
Mercy 12
Open Hand 21
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 14
 


DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 16
Drunken Master 20
Four Elements 16
Kensai 22
Long Death 21
Mercy 12
Open Hand 22
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 14
 

Ascendant Dragon 18
Astral Self 16
Drunken Master 18
Four Elements 16
Kensai 22
Long Death 21
Mercy 13 - don't get the hate
Open Hand 22
Shadow 22
Sun Soul 20
Tranquility 14
 

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