Dungeons and Dragons is a game of choices, possibilities, and strategy. When choosing the best weapons for your Paladin, you have tons of options. Whether you are looking for magical or starting weapons for your Paladin, this ranking will give you a good idea about what interesting items are out there. We have decided upon the following factors to make our ranking:
- How easy they are to acquire.
- How impactful they are in combat.
- How much use they will have for your Paladin.
- How often you will be able to use them.
The list aims to provide a mix of weapons for both low-level and high-level Paladins.
We are beginning with a great starting weapon for your Paladin. The Flail is a great weapon that isn’t used all too often to fight in 5e. When using the flail, there are a few distinct benefits over other weapons. Most notably, the flail works great against heavily armored foes that are using a shield.
Since it can be used with one hand to deal 1d8 of damage or with two hands to deal 1d10 of damage, thanks to this versatile property, you can thus make your Paladin more offensive or defensive.
A weapon that you do see often in the hands of a Paladin is the Warhammer. This versatile melee weapon can be used with one hand (1d8 damage) and two hands (1d10 damage) to bludgeon enemies.
There are quite a few magical Warhammers around too. So if you enjoy using the Warhammer as a starting weapon for your Paladin, you have plenty more options along the way to choose from.
The next entry on our list of best Paladin Weapons in DnD is the Lance. This one-handed melee weapon can deal a staggering 1d12 of piercing damage and has the reach property, allowing it to hit targets up to 10 feet away.
There are a few interesting magical Lances that you can use as your account progresses. The best one would be the rare holy lance, which is very strong against evil-aligned monsters and undead.
I prefer to use the Lance with two hands and position myself right behind the tank. That way you can stay out of harm’s way thanks to the reach of the Lance while dealing more damage.
A classic among weapons is the longsword. This versatile weapon can be wielded one-handed (1d8 damage) and two-handed (1d10 damage). The longsword is not too hard to acquire and has a ton of magical variants that you can choose from.
I prefer to use the longsword one-handed and combine it with a strong shield to help you tank whatever the DM sends your way. With the longsword, you will find yourself on the frontlines quite often, so making sure you survive unexpected and high damage is crucial.
A very underrated weapon in DnD is the humble spear. One of the main advantages of the spear is the versatility it has. The weapon can be used for melee, but also as a throwing weapon to damage foes from a good distance.
Next to that, you can use your spear with both hands or in combination with a shield or another weapon. While the spear isn’t the most intimidating weapon, it is one that gives many options when fighting.
If your paladin has the Polearm Master feat, the spear becomes one of the best beginner weapons no matter the situation. As you can now knock enemies prone and deal an additional 1d4 of bludgeoning damage during your bonus action.
The greatsword is one of the best weapons for barbarians in 5e and isn’t too bad in the hands of a Paladin either. The greatsword can deal 2d6 of slashing damage and is thus a top-tier DPS pick.
While you will have to compromise on the defensive abilities of your Paladin, the added damage output is well worth it. If you do find yourself struggling with damage, you can also use the Greatsword with one hand and wear a shield in the other.
There aren’t a lot of magical Greatswords to choose from, but those that are available are potent and interesting to use. If you have the Find Steed spell, you can summon a mount to help you in combat while wielding the greatsword.
Not just a Cleric can benefit from using a potent mace, this great simple weapon makes a ton of sense for Paladins to use too. The mace can deal 1d6 of damage when you use it one-handed and 1d8 if you strike with the mace using both hands.
The mace is great for those that need to have more flexibility in combat and want to surpass certain types of damage resistances. The reason for this is that the mace’s damage is considered to be damage coming from a magical attack. So, you can hit monsters that have non-magical attacks immunities or resistances like a skeleton.
These factors make the mace one of my favorite and top starting weapons for a paladin in DnD.
Starting with our first best magical weapons for a Paladin in 5e D&D is the Defender. This magical longsword has a +3 for attack and damage rolls and also grants a bonus to your Paladin’s AC and saving throws. Your Paladin can also get a decent amount of temporary hit points when they make an attack.
This combination of added defense and offense makes the Defender a very balanced weapon that is ideal for beginners who want to stay alive and want to make sure they still deal a good amount of damage.
Next on the list is the Sunblade. This magical weapon is great for Paladins who want to switch between offense and defense seamlessly. Thanks to the +2 bonus to attack and damage rolls and the fact that it uses radiant damage, it makes it a thematically and practical paladin weapon to vanquish undead and demons.
You can use the Sunblade both as a longsword and as a shortsword. The Sunblade can also provide a bright light in a radius of 15 feet and dim light in a radius of 15 feet. This makes it ideal to fight in dungeons and tombs that are ready to be explored.
7. Flame Tongue
Next on the ranking is the Flame Tongue. The Flame Tongue deals 2d6 of fire damage. Fire damage is the bread and butter of Paladins, as they often fight monsters who are weak to it. While this fire damage is respectable and there is a ton of utility for a Paladin build, I do not rank the Flame Tongue very high.
The most significant downside that the Flame Tongue has is the fact that fire is the most resisted damage type out there. While undead and other creatures weak to fire will have a bad time fighting you, your average foe will likely have little problems dealing with the damage.
6. Frost Brand
The Frost Brand is a well-known D&D weapon that has magical ice powers and deals cold damage to enemies. Whenever the Frost Brand attacks a target, that creature must make a CON saving throw.
In case they fail this saving throw, they will be taking an additional 2d6 of cold damage each turn and be restrained by ice. If your target is weak to cold damage – like undead – then they will take double damage.
If you are fighting undead and want to control the battlefield, then the Frost Brand is a very potent weapon to have in your arsenal.
5. Hammer of Thunderbolts
The Hammer of Thunderbolts is great for Paladins who want to have high damage output and be able to take a hit. The Hammer of Thunderbolts gives you a bonus to your Strength and Constitution of +4. This is a significant bonus to your character that will definitely aid you in fighting foes.
The Hammer of Thunderbolts deals 4d6 damage. Getting hit by the hammer will vanquish foes in no time.
The downside to the weapon is that it is quite rare and hard to obtain. So you won’t enjoy having the weapon for the majority of your campaign.
If you have a Paladin that is based on ranged combat, then the Oathbow is one of the top choices for your magical weapons. Thanks to the fact that you can deal significant damage from quite a distance, you do not have to spend much energy on being able to soak damage.
The Oathbow can deal 1d8 piercing damage on hit, however, if you imbue an arrow with magic with a command, then you can add 3d6 extra damage.
Next to that, you also have the ability called Sworn Enemy. The Sworn Enemy ability allows you to pick an enemy and deal an additional 3d6 damage on top of the other damage. This effect lasts a week or until the enemy has been defeated.
3. Conquering Maul
The Conquering Maul is fantastic for Paladins that want to crush their enemies in a brutal way. The weapon deals 2d6 bludgeoning damage and has the Conquering Presence ability. This ability can force the enemy to make a Wisdom saving throw. When the enemy fails the throw, your enemy will be frightened of you until your paladin’s next turn. Whenever you attack this frightened enemy, you and your allies have an advantage on the attack.
While the maul deals a bit less damage than you would expect from a weapon with this name, its ability is extremely strong when you have to deal with a single strong enemy.
The Maul has versatile property. That means you can use the Maul with one hand or both hands. So you can use a shield if you want to be more defensive or use both hands if you want to go full offense.
2. Holy Avenger
If you are looking for a weapon that has Paladin written all over it, then the Holy Avenger is a top pick for any melee-based Paladin. The Holy Avenger is one of the strongest weapons you can get your hands on. It has a bonus 2d10 radiant damage to fiends and undead and a +3 on your attacks.
If the Holy Avenger is wielded by a paladin, it has the following additional benefits:
- Detect Good and Evil: you can detect celestials, fiends, and undead up to 60 feet away.
- Smite Evil: you can expend a spell slot to deal more radiant damage to evil creatures.
- Protection from Evil: you can gain protection from fiends and undead.
1. Sword of Zariel
Any Paladin strives to be worthy enough to wield the Sword of Zariel. This sword is by far the best weapon for a Paladin in 5e. While you won’t be able to get this sword easily or soon, it is a worthy goal to strive for, as the damage output and abilities are downright amazing.
The Sword of Zariel has a +2 bonus and deals 2d6 of extra radiant damage to fiends. On top of that, the sword has the following abilities:
- Zariel’s Retribution: Once per turn, when you hit a fiend, they must make a Wisdom saving throw. If they fail, they become frightened until your next turn.
- Fiendish Slaying: When a wielder hits a fiend with the Sword of Zariel, you can add an additional 10d8 of radiant damage.
- Zariel’s Flare: You can use an action to use the sword’s power and damage all fiends within 30 feet with 20d6 of radiant damage.
It is pretty clear that the Sword of Zariel is an end-game weapon which you should not get until you are around level 18 or higher. While you probably won’t get the sword soon if you just started out, it is one of the legendary weapons you should strive for.
In this ranking, you can find some of the best magical and starting weapons for a paladin that will help you through your adventures from start to end. While it is hard to pick a number one pick for anyone at any time, there are some weapons that clearly stand above the rest. If you want to make the most out of your build, you should also look at magical items for your paladin.
As a Dungeon Master, you should make sure that you do not hand out weapons that are too strong or too valuable too soon. Giving your party amazing weapons might be fun for the first fight but will make combat too trivial.
We hope this ranking will help you out on your next holy adventure!