Do you ever feel safer or more confident when you’ve got a certain friend around? You know that they’ll always watch your back. That’s who the Paladin is in Dungeons & Dragons. With awesome abilities like Aura of Protection, the Paladin in your party can help your character just by being around them because you know they’ll always be there to support you.
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When Does It Become Available?
Aura of Protection comes online at 6th level. Remember, this feature is based on the number of Paladin levels you have, not your character level. If you are multiclassing, you need to take 6 levels in Paladin before this feature becomes available.
How Does Aura of Protection Work?
Any time you or a friendly creature standing within 10 feet of you is forced to make a saving throw, they can add your Charisma modifier as a flat bonus on top of their total roll. For example, if you have to make a Dexterity saving throw, you would roll your d20 and add whatever you rolled to your normal Dexterity modifier and then add your Charisma modifier on top of that.
Most single-class Paladins have a +2 or +3 Charisma modifier throughout their adventuring career, so it won’t be an enormous bonus, but every bit counts. Multiclass players who take a level in Warlock for Hexblade may choose to invest more resources in their Charisma to bring that number up to +4 or +5. You might also see that in Oath of Devotion Paladins since their Channel Divinity lets them add their Charisma modifiers to weapon attack rolls, but most Paladins will focus on Strength as their primary ability score.
Spells like resistance or features like Bardic Inspiration stack normally with Aura of Protection, so a player can add all of those things together to hopefully succeed on their saving throw. If you reach level 18 in Paladin, your aura range expands to 30 feet. Keep in mind that this applies to all saving throws, even death saving throws, if you’re standing nearby.
When Should You Use It?
Aura of Protection is always active, so you never need to choose to use it.
Are There Any Limitations?
There is no limit as to the number of times people can benefit from your aura per day, nor how many can benefit at once. 10 feet may not sound like very much, but there is ample room for at least 8 other creatures to comfortably occupy the space around you during combat. If you and your party are walking around and encounter a trap or are caught in an area-of-effect spell, your aura should easily encompass everyone.
The only true limitation to this feature is that you must be conscious for it to be active. However, Paladins are known for wearing heavy armor and wielding shields in addition to their d10 hit points, so you shouldn’t be falling unconscious very often in battle. Paladins were designed for frontline combat and are typically very hardy.
Aura of Protection is one of the best Paladin features because you don’t need to do anything to activate it, and it is unlimited. It’s simply always running, and even a small bonus to saving throws can make a huge difference whether you are in or out of combat. Paladins who don’t concentrate on spellcasting may not have a sizeable Charisma modifier, but bonuses to saving throws are always welcome.