D&D 5E Where's the Dump?

Which ability do you see most often as the dump stat at your table?


DND_Reborn

Legend
So, now years into 5E and I want to see what peoples' experiences are with dump stats. I know the results probably won't be surprising, but hey, maybe they will be...?

What ability is your most common dump stat?

YOU CAN SELECT UP TO 2 OPTIONS.

  1. It is hardly surprising after a few dozen voters that STR/INT lead the way as dump stats, with CHA a distant third. All three represent what is known as "weak" saving throws, so aren't commonly encountered and thus lose value that way as well.
  2. WIS and DEX are rare dumps; with the godhood of DEX and the importance of Perception/ Survival to most players, it isn't a shocker.
  3. CON not at all due to the sacred-HP bonus connection.
  4. Martials don't need STR when DEX is available.
  5. Wizards are the only INT-based casters, so other casters don't need INT and neither to most martials.
  6. Rogues are probably the only martial class (except the INT-based EK and AT subclasses) who values INT at all.
  7. CHA is valuable to CHA-based casters (Bard, Paladin, Sorcerer, and Warlock--whew! talk about overkill!) and face-man type PCs who stress CHA-based skills. But unless you are one of those 4 classes or a face-man, you don't need it really.
Sadly, most of us probably suspected things would go this way. I wonder if WotC will ever address the imbalance and find more uses for STR, INT, and CHA in the future?
 
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Wisdom. As long as somebody has it, everyone doesn't need it. Also, I don't see a lot of clerics and druids in my games, and in any case adventuring isn't the wisest profession anyway.
 

J-H

Hero
The 3 current players in my high-level game (we lost 2):
Monk INT 6 (19 with headband of intellect; drank from a Fomorian drink)
Paladin 8
Barbarian 8

Lost players were a cleric (Int 10)
and an Artificer (Int 20)

Charisma isn't high on any of them except the Paladin either.
 


DND_Reborn

Legend
My best effort was to dump cha, dex, int to 8, with the same character.
I love that you went with dex for one of them!

Another issue I take with 5E, and don't enforce, is DEX penalties don't hurt your AC when wearing heavy armor. :p Screw that! A clumsy person in heavy armor is going to be easier to hit and thus hurt than someone who isn't clumsy.
 


iserith

Magic Wordsmith
Unless we're rolling ability scores in order, I wouldn't say there's a common enough "dump stat" at my table to say one way or the other. There have been instances where by happenstance the party wasn't terribly bright or charismatic (and one time no great Str), but those were unusual enough to be seen as funny rather than the norm. Dexterity and Wisdom will certainly be greatly valued because of all the mechanics that interact with them. Dumping any stat in my game is perilous or at the very least costly. A character is usually better off if they are more well-rounded than highly specialized.
 





Laurefindel

Legend
We don’t use point-buy so there isn’t any intentionally low stats to dump, but low stats usually go in either Str, Int, or Cha. From what I’ve observed…

characters who mostly rely on high Dex often dump Str from what I’ve seen, but high Str characters very rarely dump Dex.

when Int isn’t dumped, it’s either maxed or left in a 10-12 range. I rarely see an Int 13 character just to allow multiclassing, even on eldritch knights and arcane tricksters. [edit] ok, I’ve seen 14-16 Int EK and AT, so not quite maxed, but second-best.

Cha has a more even distribution among characters, but I’ve seen way more very low Cha scores than low Dex, Con, or Wis.

interestingly, it follows the three « good » saves and three « bad » saves.
 



Wisdom. As long as somebody has it, everyone doesn't need it. Also, I don't see a lot of clerics and druids in my games, and in any case adventuring isn't the wisest profession anyway.
I thought everybody needed wisdom for Perception (to avoid surprise) and wisdom saves. Having low wisdom is a good way to lose the ability to take actions in combat.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
No specific dump stat. The low stats usually come directly out of the class someone is playing, as each one has a usual triumvirate of ability scores they focus on. The Fighters take STR, CON & WIS and will dump any of the other three... the Warlocks usually take CHA, DEX & CON and will dump any of the other three... the Monks will take DEX, WIS & CON and dump any of the other three, the Paladins take STR, CHA & CON and dump one of the other three etc.

I have never once had that theoretical table that some others always go on about where every single character is DEX-based and dump STR and INT, because DEX is the so-called "uber-stat". I've always found those complaints completely overblown because there's always at least one player at my table that is going to go STR-based and tank or INT-based and cast, because those character archetypes are fun.
 

Int was the clear winner here in my experience, so that was my vote -

But I have been in parties where the strongest character was my dragonborn wizard (I wanted to dump Con to see how bad it really is - it's bad) who had all of a 14 after racial mods. So strength is definitely in second place.
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
I have found every stat to be potentially useful for any character and specifically useful for specific classes - and if some characters have a low score in one or more abilities that was the luck of the draft and what they could deal with for how they pictured their character, not because that stat was "useless."

If anything, the most "useless" stat mechanically is probably intelligence (for non-wizards) - and I have been considering granting extra proficiencies for high int (but not fewer for low int)
 

No specific dump stat. The low stats usually come directly out of the class someone is playing, as each one has a usual triumvirate of ability scores they focus on. The Fighters take STR, CON & WIS and will dump any of the other three... the Warlocks usually take CHA, DEX & CON and will dump any of the other three... the Monks will take DEX, WIS & CON and dump any of the other three, the Paladins take STR, CHA & CON and dump one of the other three etc.

I have never once had that theoretical table that some others always go on about where every single character is DEX-based and dump STR and INT, because DEX is the so-called "uber-stat". I've always found those complaints completely overblown because there's always at least one player at my table that is going to go STR-based and tank or INT-based and cast, because those character archetypes are fun.
This largely tracks with my own experience: no one in the group playing a strength-based character is rare. I have never seen a party where no one is playing a charisma-based character, but for non-cha classes cha is a popular low stat.

No one playing a wizard isn't rare, but even that doesn't mean everyone has below-average int, just that the highest might be a 12. And artificers may be changing that dynamic.

I can imagine something like an AL game where everyone's some variation of Dex-based paladin-multi because that's what the forums told them to be, but most players learn pretty quick that you really don't need to optimize in 5e DnD; pretty much everything works fine so just pick what sounds cool.
 

I love that you went with dex for one of them!

Another issue I take with 5E, and don't enforce, is DEX penalties don't hurt your AC when wearing heavy armor. :p Screw that! A clumsy person in heavy armor is going to be easier to hit and thus hurt than someone who isn't clumsy.
I was playing with roll20, and it make -1 on the plate AC.
dump stat are over shun, in plate 18-1 = 17 AC is quite enough, and rolling for a DC 18 dex save, having +0 or -1 won’t make such a difference.
I just check out indeed, you don’t add penalty for negative bonus for AC, another reason to dump dex!
 
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