D&D Race Guide: How to Play an Eladrin
These elves from the Feywind who’s personalities and moods are tired directly to their seasons. Are you more of a Spring or an Autumn?
If you’re a player who really enjoys the Fey, the Eladrin may be the perfect playable race for you. While technically elves, they’re from the Feywild and have all of the flounce, aesthetic, and power to prove it.
“Eladrin are elves of the Feywild, a realm of perilous beauty and boundless magic. Using that magic, eladrin can step from one place to another in the blink of an eye, and each eladrin resonates with emotions captured in the Feywild in the form of seasons — affinities that affect the eladrin’s mood and appearance. An eladrin’s season can change, though some remain in one season forever. Choose your season or roll on the Eladrin Seasons table. Your Trance trait lets you change your season.”
The Eladrin show up in two books and have slightly different traits in each.
In Mordekainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse players can increase one ability score by two and another score by one or instead choose to raise three different scores by one each.
Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes instead gives your character +2 to Dexterity and a +1 to Charisma
Both books provide advantage against being charmed thanks to their Fey Ancestry, the ability to teleport up to 30 feet thanks to Fey Step, and additional proficiency in Perception thanks to Keen Senses. Eladrin also have darkvision and the ability to trance instead of sleep like all Elves.
Eladrin are based deeply in nature and the seasons. So making your Eladrin a Druid would be a fitting way to go. Unfortunately, you would have to pick your own ability score improvements to boost Wisdom, since they would otherwise go to Dex and Charisma.
But with boosts to both Dexterity and Charisma, Bard or Rogue are two other good options for an Eladrin. Natural grace would lend itself well to a finesse weapon as well as sneaking around. And with Fey Step, keeping just out of reach of danger after viciously mocking or stealing from an enemy would be that much easier.
There are four kinds of Eladrin that correspond to the four seasons. Some Eladrin stay with their one season their whole lives while others can transform and adopt the characteristics of their new season.
Autumn is the season of peace and goodwill. These Eladrin are trusting and helpful, sometimes to a fault. Winter Eladrin are more pessimistic and self-interested. But this makes them mindful survivors. Spring is a season of cheer and celebration. Spring Eladrin are energetic and enthusiastic. They want to have a good time, but they sometimes only want to have a good time. Finally, Summer is a season of boldness and aggression. These Eladrin believe in direct confrontation… even if direct confrontation means striking now and asking questions later.
Tips & Tricks
If you decide to play an Eladrin, you’re picking a character with the potential to have a lot of personalities. My biggest suggestion for this sort of character isn’t a technical one but a good player tip. It won’t be fun to play an Eladrin and not let the changes of their season change their personality at all. Think about what season you’re about to shift into and what that means for your character and what their mood is about to be.
At the same time, making your character unlikable or difficult at the table because “it’s what they would say or do” or “it’s because of the season they’re in” won’t be fun for everyone else at the table. There is a middle ground between having a very stubborn Summer Eladrin who won’t listen to their teammates and runs directly into trouble, and ignoring the seasons altogether. Find that middle ground.
Have you played an Eladrin character before? Has anybody in your party? What season do you think would be the most fun to play? Let us know in the comments!