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DnD Changeling 5e race guide

In Dungeons and Dragons, the DnD Changeling 5e can mould its face to become anyone - here's all you need to know about the D&D race.

Wizards of the Coast art of a DnD Changeling 5e

The DnD Changeling 5e race is gifted with the power to become someone else. Whether it’s to deceive, entertain, or simply express an emotion, these grey-faced creatures can appear as almost anyone. There are likely Changelings blending into crowds in all cities – but you’d never know they were there.

The Changeling DnD 5e race is such a malleable character that even their DnD backgrounds have variations. The fifth edition Changeling was originally introduced in Eberron: Rising From the Last War, where Changelings are humanoids who can change their faces thanks to an ancestral gift from Eberron’s deities, the Sovereigns. In the more recent Monsters of the Multiverse, Changelings are said to originate from the Feywild.

It’s not just Changeling lore that differs in DnD books. There are mechanical variations in the most changeable of DnD races too. And despite their changeable faces, they’re not the most malleable race for DnD character builds. This means a good understanding of how to build a Changeling character before playing is key – luckily, we’ve got all the info on names, traits, and DnD classes you need to get started.

Here’s everything you need to know about the DnD Changeling 5e race:

Wizards of the Coast art of a DnD changeling 5e with long white hair and a dark robe, standing on a speaker's platform and holding a scroll

DnD Changeling 5e names

There’s no guidance on Changeling 5e names in Monsters of the Multiverse, but Eberron: Rising from the Last War offers some guidance on choosing a name. In fact, it’s not uncommon for Changelings to have multiple names – they may have a name for each ‘mask’ (a physical appearance with no depth or backstory) and ‘persona’ (a physical appearance with its own identity and beliefs).

Changelings do have a true name, and this tends to be monosyllabic and gender-neutral (gender for Changelings is often just another changeable feature). Some common examples of Changeling names you might find in a DnD name generator are Cas, Jin, Nix, Ruz, or Sim.

Changelings may be able to tell two of their fellows with the same name apart by subtle physical accents that are indistinguishable to everyone else – Cas-with-the-sharp-teeth and Cas-with-dark-hair are as different as night and day to the trained eye.

Wizards of the Coast art of a DnD changeling 5e transforming into a figure in a painting they're touching

DnD Changeling 5e traits

Since there have been multiple iterations of the 5e Changeling, let’s keep this simple. Here are the Changeling 5e traits you’ll find in Eberron: Rising from the Last War and Monsters of the Multiverse (MotM).

Before jumping in, it’s also useful to bear in mind that Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything allows you to customize your character’s racial origin further by choosing alternative ability scores and proficiencies.

Eberron Changeling traits

Ability score increase Charisma +2, any other skill +1
Size Medium
Speed 30ft
Languages Common, plus two of your choice
Creature type Humanoid

Though you won’t see visible signs of ageing on a creature that can change their appearance at will, Changelings actually mature slightly faster than humans, and they live to be a similar age.

DnD Changeling 5e - MTG card art Vesuvan Shapeshifter by Ralph Horsley: two identical men, one of them apprarently forming from water, their hands touching and meeting in a bright starburst of light

The Changeling Instincts trait gives your character proficiency with two of the following DnD skills – Deception, Insight, Intimidation, and Persuasion. Changelings also have the Shapechanger trait. This allows them to change their appearance at will, but there are a few rules to be followed.

Firstly, the Changeling must have seen the visage they’re going to take on, and it needs to have the same basic shape (for example, the same arrangement of limbs – no spider-monsters here). Secondly, the Changeling cannot change their size, equipment, or game DnD stats via transformation. And lastly, the Changeling must remain in this form until they use an action to revert to their true form or they die.

MotM Changeling traits

Ability score increase +2 to any score and +1 to any other score, or +1 to three scores of your choice
Size Choose Medium or Small
Speed 30ft
Languages Common plus one of your choice
Creature type Fey

This version of the Changeling 5e still has the Changeling Instincts trait and the Shapechanger trait found in the Eberron Changeling traits. However, you can now choose two proficiencies from Deception, Insight, Intimidation, Persuasion, or Performance. The only major difference to the Shapechanger trait is you can now shift size between Medium and Small.

Wizards of the Coast art of a DnD changeling 5e with dark eyeliner, white hair, and a black cloak

DnD Changeling 5e classes

While there’s a lot of freedom with a Changeling’s ability scores, this race’s proficiencies are almost exclusively Charisma-based. Combine this with the Eberron build’s +2 Charisma, and it seems foolish not to build a character that benefits from skills like Deception, Intimidation, and Persuasion.

Basically, Changelings seem destined for one of two classes – the charismatic DnD Bard, or the sneaky DnD Rogue. They’re both optimum from a mechanical point of view, and they have plenty of great roleplaying reasons to use those shapeshifting abilities.

If the Bard doesn’t satisfy your spellcasting desires, you can easily build a strong Charisma-based spellcaster like a DnD Sorcerer or a DnD Warlock. The DnD Cleric is also a pretty good choice – you can benefit from the one Wisdom proficiency available (Insight), and the MotM build can sway your strengths more towards Wisdom than Charisma. You don’t get a lot of spell-related proficiency bonuses with this build, though.

If you’re looking for a tanky fighter, this probably isn’t the race for you. Sure, you could manufacture a chunky Changeling DnD Barbarian or DnD Fighter with the freedom of the MotM ability scores, but those Charisma-based proficiencies are wasted without an in-character reason to buff that skill.

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Roleplaying a DnD Changeling

When playing a character who can change their outward identity at ease, your approach to roleplay will be slightly different. Gone are the days as a run-of-the-mill DnD Human or 5e Elf who has one face (and perhaps one name) their entire life.

Perhaps the biggest decision you’ll need to make for your Changeling is whether you’ll be roleplaying one character or many. Some Changelings cultivate several complex personas, which means you may behave differently to represent each of them.

Beyond their gender and physical features, perhaps each has different tones of voice or common catchphrases that make them easy for their friends to recognize. If you plan to show several of these personas regularly over time, preparing a few memorable signifiers can be useful and fun.

If you’re playing one personality with many faces, you may choose to keep things simpler. You’ll still need to think about how your nearest and dearest (i.e. the non-Changelings in your adventuring party) can spot you in a crowd. They won’t know your face if you’ve shifted form, but perhaps they’ll spot an accessory you always wear, or a scar you give to each face you present.

Think to about what’s most important to your Changeling, and how they interact with others in the world. What kind of relationships do they value (if any) in a world that can’t trust them to keep the same face? How do they feel about fame, community, and law when they can change their identity like a pair of shoes?

Wizards of the Coast art of a DnD Changeling 5e Rogue

DnD Changeling builds

Since the Changeling seems ready-made for the Rogue class, we’ll lean into this for our first DnD Changeling build. We think the Assassin is the most fitting DnD Rogue subclass. There’s a lot of thematic crossover, and the Changeling can mimic some of the Assassin’s high-level abilities from the get-go.


  • Choose +2 Dexterity and +1 Charisma for your ability score increases. Lying your way out of trouble will be important, but landing consistent killing blows is a bigger priority.
  • For your starting equipment, choose a rapier and a shortbow. Select a pack based on what kind of environments you expect to spend the most time in in your upcoming campaign.
  • Choose the following starting race and class proficiencies: Deception, Intimidation, Perception, Persuasion, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth. We recommend making Stealth and Sleight of Hand your Expertise choices at level one.
  • Pick up the Assassin archetype at level three.
  • At level four, take the Alert feat over an ability score increase. This helps ensure you’re always first on DnD Initiative rolls, and you can make the most of your Assassinate feature, which gives you advantage on attack rolls against creatures that haven’t taken a turn yet.
  • For level six, choose Perception and Deception as your Expertise choices.
  • The Assassin’s level nine feature lets you create false identities for seven days and 25 gold pieces worth of work. This might be redundant thanks to your natural Changeling abilities, but it’s a good backup plan if your DM was previously stingy about how convincing your disguises were. Plus, most campaigns end by levels 10-12, so you were able to take advantage of great disguises much earlier than most Assassins.
  • Boost your Dexterity by two if it was already on an even number by level ten. Otherwise, put one point in Dexterity and the other in Charisma.
  • Sit back, and enjoy killing things.

It’s time to get your Changeling character on a DnD character sheet and into a DnD campaign. If you’d like more DnD character creator advice, here’s the best 5e feats and 5e spells to consider for your Changeling.