Description: Monks are versatile warriors skilled at fighting without weapons or armor. Good-aligned monks serve as protectors of the people, while evil monks make ideal spies and assassins. Though they don't cast spells, monks channel a subtle energy, called ki. This energy allows them to perform amazing feats, such as healing themselves, catching arrows in flight, and dodging blows with lightning speed. Their mundane and ki-based abilities grow with experience, granting them more power over themselves and their environment. Monks suffer unique penalties to their abilities if they wear armor, as doing so violates their rigid oaths. Monks wearing armor lose their wisdom and level based armor class bonuses, their movement speed, and their additional unarmed attacks per round.

Alignment restrictions: any lawful

Hit die: d8

Proficiencies: armor (robes), weapons (monk)

Skill point: 4 + int modifier ( (4 + int modifier) * 4 at 1st level)

Skills: concentration, craft armor, craft trap, craft weapon, discipline, heal, hide, listen, lore, move silently, parry, persuade, tumble

Unavailable feats: brew potion, craft wand, curse song, divine might, divine shield, extra music, extra turning, lingering song, quicken spell, scribe scroll, spell focus, weapon specialization
These general feat cannot be selected when taking a level of monk.

Primary Saving Throw(s) : fortitude, reflex, will

Base Attack Bonus: +3/4 levels

Specialty weapon: The monk retains his unarmed attack bonus when fighting with a kama.

Level progression[]

Lvl BAB Saves Feats HP range   Unarmed AB Flurry of blows AB Unarmed damage AC bonus Speed bonus
Fort Ref Will Large/medium Small
1st +0 +2 +2 +2 cleave, monk AC bonus, stunning fist,evasion,
flurry of blows, improved unarmed strike
4-8 +0 -2/-2 1d6 1d4 - -
2nd +1 +3 +3 +3 deflect arrows 8-16 +1 -1/-1 1d6 1d4 - -
3rd +2 +3 +3 +3 monk speed, still mind 12-24 +2 +0/+0 1d6 1d4 - +10%
4th +3 +4 +4 +4 ki power (1) 16-32 +3 +1/+1 1d8 1d6 - +10%
5th +3 +4 +4 +4 purity of body 20-40 +3 +1/+1 1d8 1d6 +1 +10%
6th +4 +5 +5 +5 knockdown, improved knockdown 24-48 +4/+1 +2/-1/+2 1d8 1d6 +1 +20%
7th +5 +5 +5 +5 wholeness of body 28-56 +5/+2 +3/+0/+3 1d8 1d6 +1 +20%
8th +6/+1 +6 +6 +6 ki power (2) 32-64 +6/+3 +4/+1/+4 1d10 1d8 +1 +20%
9th +6/+1 +6 +6 +6 improved evasion 36-72 +6/+3 +4/+1/+4 1d10 1d8 +1 +30%
10th +7/+2 +7 +7 +7 ki strike +1 40-80 +7/+4/+1 +5/+2/-1/+5 1d10 1d8 +2 +30%
11th +8/+3 +7 +7 +7 diamond body 44-88 +8/+5/+2 +6/+3/+0/+6 1d10 1d8 +2 +30%
12th +9/+4 +8 +8 +8 diamond soul, ki power (3) 48-96 +9/+6/+3 +7/+4/+1/+7 1d12 1d10 +2 +40%
13th +9/+4 +8 +8 +8 ki strike +2 52-104 +9/+6/+3 +7/+4/+1/+7 1d12 1d10 +2 +40%
14th +10/+5 +9 +9 +9 56-112 +10/+7/+4/+1 +8/+5/+2/-1/+8 1d12 1d10 +2 +40%
15th +11/+6/+1 +9 +9 +9 quivering palm 60-120 +11/+8/+5/+2 +9/+6/+3/+0/+9 1d12 1d10 +3 +50%
16th +12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +10 ki power (4), ki strike +3 64-128 +12/+9/+6/+3 +10/+7/+4/+1/+10 1d20 2d6 +3 +50%
17th +12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +10 68-136 +12/+9/+6/+3 +10/+7/+4/+1/+10 1d20 2d6 +3 +50%
18th +13/+8/+3 +11 +11 +11 empty body 72-144 +13/+10/+7/+4/+1 +11/+8/+5/+2/-1/+11 1d20 2d6 +3 +60%
19th +14/+9/+4 +11 +11 +11 76-152 +14/+11/+8/+5/+2 +12/+9/+6/+3/+0/+12 1d20 2d6 +3 +60%
20th +15/+10/+5 +12 +12 +12 ki power (5), perfect self 80-160 +15/+12/+9/+6/+3 +13/+10/+7/+4/+1/+13 1d20 2d6 +4 +60%
  • A monk's unarmed base attack bonus (UBAB) is still affected by multiclassing. Characters may gain additional attacks by taking a higher BAB progression class (e.g. fighter levels), or reduced attacks from taking a lower BAB progression class (e.g. wizard levels).
  • A monk's UBAB, armor class bonuses (from wisdom and every 5 levels), and speed are all negated when the monk wears armor other than clothing or uses a shield.

Epic monk[]

An epic monk's speed, power, grace, and force of will are unmatched by mortal beings. His powers continue to multiply as he steps away from the mortal shell and accepts an inner tranquility that lesser characters cannot even dream of.

Hit die: d8

Skill points: 4 + int modifier

Bonus feats: the epic monk gains a bonus feat every five levels after 20th. In other words, at levels 25, 30, 35, and 40.

Special: every 3 levels, the monk's movement speed will increase by an additional 10%.

Special AC bonus: every 5 levels from 20, the monk's AC will increase by an additional + 1.

Epic monk bonus feats: armor skin, blinding speed, epic damage reduction, epic energy resistance, epic toughness, improved ki strike 4, improved ki strike 5, improved spell resistance, improved stunning fist, self concealment

Unavailable epic feats: automatic quicken spell, automatic silent spell, automatic still spell, bane of enemies, construct shape, dragon shape, epic spell penetration, epic spell: dragon knight, epic spell: epic mage armor, epic spell: epic warding, epic spell: greater ruin, epic spell: hellball, epic spell: mummy dust, epic weapon specialization, great smiting, improved sneak attack, lasting inspiration, mighty rage, outsider shape, planar turning, terrifying rage, thundering rage,undead shape

These epic general feats cannot be selected when taking a level of monk.

Epic monk level progression[]

  Lvl   Feats HP range AC bonus Speed bonus
21st 84-168 +4 +70%
22nd 88-176 +4 +70%
23rd 92-184 +4 +70%
24th ki power (6) 96-192 +4 +80%
25th bonus feat 100-200 +5 +80%
26th 104-208 +5 +80%
27th 108-216 +5 +90%
28th ki power (7) 112-224 +5 +90%
29th 116-232 +5 +90%
30th bonus feat 120-240 +6 +100%
31st 124-248 +6 +100%
32nd ki power (8) 128-256 +6 +100%
33rd 132-264 +6 +110%
34th 136-272 +6 +110%
35th bonus feat 140-280 +7 +110%
36th ki power (9) 144-288 +7 +120%
37th 148-296 +7 +120%
38th 152-304 +7 +120%
39th 156-312 +7 +130%
40th bonus feat, ki power (10) 160-320 +8 +130%

Prestige class tips[]

  • Shadowdancer is a good choice for a stealthy monk.
  • Pious monks may want to consider the Divine Champion.
  • Dragon Disciple provides useful ability score boosts. In addition, the base class (sorcerer or bard) used to qualify for this prestige class opens the use of arcane scrolls. Bard requires an alignment change, however, although it would bring some additional benefits (e.g. bard song and use magic device).
  • Ranger is a useful class when going for 10 attacks per round as it receives full BAB. It also provides the two-weapon feats for free.
  • Weapon master at post-epic levels will add significant damage due to an increased critical range while using kamas.
  • A monk's unarmed attack bonuses work with the shifter's (and druid's) unarmed shapes.


  • At level 20, monks receive glowing eyes. The color of the glow depends on the character's alignment: good glows blue, evil glows red, and neutral glows purple. This occurs because in PnP 20th-level monks become outsider; however, in NWN, their race does not change.
  • Only multiclass monks with at least 4 pre-epic levels in a class with maximum BAB can max out the number of attacks per round. To do this, a multiclass monk will need two-weapon fighting, improved two-weapon fighting, haste, flurry of blows and wield a kama in each hand. This will give 10 attacks per round, the most anyone can achieve:
    • 16 BAB at level 20 gives 4 main hand attacks per round (at least 4 levels of a full BAB progression class are required before level 20).
    • Monk's unarmed attack bonus with lower requirement for extra attacks adds 2 main hand attacks per round.
    • An off-hand kama adds 1 off-hand attack per round.
    • Improved two-weapon fighting adds 1 off-hand attack per round.
    • Flurry of blows adds 1 attack per round.
    • Haste adds 1 attack per round.
  • The cleric spell divine power raises the character's base attack bonus to that of a fighter of the same level, and grants extra attacks per round as appropriate. This would mean that a monk who had sufficient clerical levels to cast this spell and who was dual wielding kamas could also reach 10 attacks per round.
  • While unarmed monks lack the two off-hand attacks of a dual-wielder, they can effectively reach 9 attacks per round by taking the circle kick feat. However, circle kick has some problems, as noted in its article.
  • Due to the inclusion of AC-enhancing monk-only equipment (like robes of the shining hand and boots of the sun soul), the tumble AC bonus, and the monk AC bonuses, monks without armor have a much higher AC than others, putting them on par with warriors.
  • Since NWN has various gloves with attack bonuses, monks can do their fist damage with the attack bonus of wielding a weapon. The only disadvantage they have from not using a weapon is the decrease in attacks per round (no two-weapon fighting).
    • The attack bonus of the gloves also defines the enchantment level of the unarmed attack in terms of bypassing damage reduction. So, for example, while wearing +10 AB gloves, a monk's unarmed attack will ignore X/+10 damage reduction.
  • Monks are designed primarily as anti-casters. They can dodge spells, resist spells, and kill people who have low fortitude saves with one hit. They move quickly, reducing the distance between themselves and their target. Their stunning fist stops casters from being able to cast spells for three rounds.
  • Monks who also have stealth can move much faster than rogues when in stealth mode. Elven monks, with their automatic active search checks, make for excellent forward scouts.
  • There is a tendency among players to confuse "specialty weapon" with "equivalent to unarmed attacks". However, the only special treatment kamas receive is what is stated above: a monk retains his unarmed attack bonus when fighting with a kama. No other unarmed-only ability can be used while fighting with a kama. This includes stunning fist, quivering palm, and ki strike. (Note that the flurry of blows description specifically states that it applies to both unarmed attacks and kamas, so it is not "unarmed-only".)
  • Wisdom-based tends to work well for unarmed monks, as it increases the DC of attacks such as quivering palm and stunning fist, though they suffer from lower attack bonuses. The dexterity-based monk tends to work well with a kama as they do not rely on the wisdom-based special attacks. High dexterity in combination with weapon finesse allows the dexterity-based monk to achieve high attack bonuses (with either kamas or unarmed attacks). The down-side is that single-classed monks are not granted any uncanny dodge feats. This leaves them vulnerable when caught flat-footed.

Previous versions[]

  • Prior to version 1.69, a monk could activate flurry of blows as long as the primary hand was using a kama.