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5E How does the knowledge cleeic play?


Hey so im interested in playing a knowledge cleric, but I haven't seen that much discussion about them. How does the knowledge cleric play?

Aka, if you have played (or were in a party with) a knowledge cleric, what was it like? Was it fun? Useful? Would you recommend other domains over it?

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There’s a knowledge cleric (albeit one that multiclassed into Sorcerer) in the group I DM for. His ability to gain various proficiencies through Knowledge of the Ages has really come in handy multiple times. It provides a great degree of versatility, under the right circumstances.

For my part, I’m fond of the Life domain for its unparalleled healing abilities. But it all depends on what kind of cleric you want to play.


First Post
Knowledge is actually really strong if you don't have a wizard in the party, you will basically be the only one with a good chance of passing history or arcana checks. The channel divinity to know any skill combined with guidance can give you a shot at most skill checks.

Knowledge basically gives your cleric more skills, if you think you will have skill use heavy campaign, or if your DM requires Identify, or later on you think suggestion per short rest would be handy.

Basically knowledge will do better if the campaign has lots of puzzles or social interactions, It isn't going to compare to the destruction of Light, or the Healing of life, but it has a solid place in the options.


Its probably one of the better clerics as it is good ad something (skills) as the light and life clerics are generally the best of the bunch.

The other clerics kind of fail at what you think they should do ie the war cleric is not actually that good at erm war, the tempest cleric is not that good at combat or blowing things up.

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
I have played one levels 1-4, and it was a blast. The player has an obligation to tap into knowledge skills often and "expertise" on two knowledge skills means that DC 15 is easily hit. Mine was a human with the observant feat, and so Investigation DCs were also easier.

Curiously, the experience led me to the following conclusion: for some non-human races, a knowledge cleric is remarkably useful. Bullywug, Gnoll, Lizardfolk, and Orc all have hits to their intelligence scores (pre-Volo), and as a result the level 2 ability, Knowledge of the Ages, means that the cleric can have proficiency in any skill or tool that's needed in the course of day-to-day life (supplemented of course with Guidance).

Would play one again.

Yeah, those double-proficiency bonus features are exceedingly useful.

I have played one levels 1-4, and it was a blast. The player has an obligation to tap into knowledge skills often and "expertise" on two knowledge skills means that DC 15 is easily hit. Mine was a human with the observant feat, and so Investigation DCs were also easier.


In terms of whether it is effective or powerful, the DM is going to have a huge impact on the utility of the Knowledge Cleric. How and when knowledge skills can be used is something the DM will be deciding. If these things concern you, I'd recommend talking to the DM to find out how the abilities of the Knowledge Cleric would be allowed to be used.

However, you can also just decide to play the character concept that sounds fun and look at the mechanics only as a secondary issue. 5E works well regardless of whether a PC is underpowered or overpowered - as long as the entire party is in the same ballpark.

Irda Ranger

First Post
One of my players (I am the DM) has a 9th level Knowledge Cleric, and it's great. He doesn't wade into combat at all, but plays a support role in combat, using Healing Word to keep Fighters in the fight and Guiding Bolt to set the rogue up for Sneak Attacks.

Out of combat his Knowledge of the Ages has proved useful. He has used it mostly for Tool proficiencies. Proficiency plus casting Guidance on himself plus a high Intelligence and he can make or do anything for 10-20 minutes. It's like having MacGuyver in the group. Admittedly part of this is me (as the DM) empowering his applications of it; for instance I have allowed that he can write down instructions to himself for later when doing certain things, like improvising a recipe while Proficient and then just following the recipe once it wears off.

Another thing he's done is during a month of downtime he would tutor another PC in a Tool Proficiency for 20 minutes each morning and evening until the other PC gained natural Proficiency. In this way our Sailor Rogue learned how to use the Spelljamming 3D-sextant that allows guiding Spelljammers between planets and crystal spheres.

We also don't have a Wizard (just a Sorcerer), so the Cleric is the only one with Identify, which I require to get anything from magic items besides flat bonuses.

My campaign also has a heavy investigative and mystery-solving aspect which the Knowledge Cleric's Domain Spells are basically designed for.

We've joked several times that his character is basically William of Baskerville from The Name of the Rose.



I created an NPC that ended up as my PC. The idea was to provide the group with a full support character, cause noone likes to play rogues and clerics around here. Then when I was too lazy to make a character for a game I just used my NPC as a as a PC.

The setup is Human Variant (Feat: Skillful) / Knowledge Cleric.

Mechanically it plays a skillmonkey and healbot mashed together, standing back in combat and always in front in dungeons.

Role-play wise I played the character as an NPC funny enough, but I'm a fairly passive player so it fits.


There is a Knowledge Cleric in a campaign I'm running but he basically tries to play it as a War Cleric. In fact he always forgets that he has skill proficiency through Knowledge of the Ages. Most of the time he just swings away with his Warhammer and occasionally throws out a Cure Wounds in between combat encounters despite frequent reminders of his strengths.

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