Introduction

Sorcerers are a SAD caster class, so Charisma bonuses are absolutely essential and anything else is secondary. Dexterity and Constitution can be great since you don’t get armor proficiency, but if you have at least a +1 to Charisma you’ll do fine.

Innate Spellcasting to compensate for the Sorcerer’s small pool of spells known can go a long way, especially for post-Tasha’s races which allow you to re-cast your innate spells using spell slots, effectively giving you additional spells known. For most casters you’ll get more use out of spells from other spell lists, but for the Sorcerer you’ll do fine with anything useful enough to cast.

Racial traits which improve your durability to compensate for your d6 hit dice and lack of armor are both great choices. It’s harder for the Sorcerer to carry around Absorb Elements and Shield than it is for the Wizard, so damage resistances, AC bonuses or natural armor to replace Mage Armor, and other options like temporary hit points can all be helpful.

Since sorcerers generally shouldn’t be in melee, flight is a huge asset. Not only does it save you a spell known, but it also doesn’t require Concentration. You might also look or skills from your race so that you can expand beyond Face skills which most sorcerers default to due to their high Charisma.

After reading this handbook, I encourage you to read our CLASS Handbook.

Table of Contents

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Sorcerer Races

Keep in mind that not all races will be available in every game. Consult your DM about which races are welcome in your game, as not all settings are appropriate to every setting or even to specific campaigns within a setting which might otherwise welcome any and all races.

AarakocraEEPC

UpdatedMMoM: Flight is excellent, but the innate spellcasting is unhelpful. Other flying options are better.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases and flight. Excellent, but other flying options which provide more than just speed are better in almost every case.

Default Rules: Permanent nonmagical flight is great, but you’ll lag offensively.

AasimarVGtM

UpdatedMMoM: Radiant Spirit is your best option. Necrotic Shroud looks tempting because the DC is Charisma-based, but the range is tiny and if you’re stuck in melee it’s probably not going to save you. You either need to Disengage or teleport.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, two damage resistances, and Darkvision. Transformation is still the big reason to play the Aasimar. Note that the damage bonuses from Transformation work with spells, so your best bet is to make multiple attacks (Scorching Ray) or use an AOE damage spell and apply the damage to a creature which fails its save.

  • Fallen: The sorcerer generally does not belong in melee.
  • Protector: Flight when you need it in combat and a damage boost.
  • Scourge: Exciting, but you don’t have the hit points to back this up.

Default Rules: +2 Charisma is fantastic for sorcerers. Healing hands provides a healing mechanic very rarely available to sorcerers, and you get resistance to both necrotic and radiant damage, neither of which can be gained from spells like Resist Energy.

  • Fallen: Necrotic Shroud’s damage boost is nice, but the Strength bonus is totally wasted on the Sorcerer.
  • Protector: Flight when you need it, and it doesn’t require Concentration.
  • Scourge: You do not have enough hit points to gamble them on Radiant Consumption.

Aasimar (DMG Variant)DMG

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, two damage resistances, and Darkvision. The innate spellcasting is nice, but the Divine Soul Sorcerer gets access to the same spells so it’s not especially exciting.

Default Rules: A Charisma increase, two damage resistances, and Darkvision. The innate spellcasting is nice, but the Divine Soul Sorcerer gets access to the same spells so it’s not especially exciting.

Air GenasiMMoM

The Air Genasi’s spells are all available to the Sorcerer, but on a class which is so strictly limited by its tiny number of spells known, the innate spellcasting is a huge benefit. You can also use Twinned Spell with Levitate, which is hilariously effective.

Bugbear

UpdatedMMoM: Fun if you want to start every combat with Scorching Ray. If you can act before your target, Surprise Attack will fully double your damage from Scorching Ray. Otherwise, the Bugbear is unremarkable.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases, Darkvision, and one skill. Surprise Attack works with spells which make attacks like Chromatic Orb, which makes single-target spell attacks a very effective option in early in a fight. However, as you gain levels spells which require attacks become less common and Surprise Attack will gradually fall out of favor. Long-Limbed is a trap; it won’t work with Booming Blade or with touch spells targeting your allies.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

Centaur

UpdatedMMoM: All of the Centaur’s interesting traits are tied up in Strength.

Classic (Customized Origin)GGTR: All of the Centaur’s interesting traits are tied up in Strength.

Classic (Default Rules)GGTR: Bad ability spread.

Changeling

UpdatedMMoM: Great in an intrigue campaign, but mostly defined by the two skills and you can get those from many other races.

Classic (Customized Origin)ERLW: The Customizing Your Origin rule does little to improve the Changeling since their traits already lined up well with the Sorcerer’s needs, but their signature trait is still made mostly irrelevant by the ability to cast Disguise Self.

Classic (Default Rules)ERLW: Not quite as flexible as the Standard Half-Elf, you give up quite a bit to get Shapechanger. Shapechanger is neat but if you want it that badly you could always learn to cast Disguise Self.

Deep GnomeMMoM

Don’t expect to get much out of Svirfneblin Camouflage, but otherwise the Deep Gnome’s traits are nice. Darkvision saves you a spell, Gnomish Magic Resistance protects you on some saves (sorcerers have poor Int/Wis saves), and the innate spellcasting is occasionally useful.

DragonbornPHB

Chromatic: A breath weapon is a decent replacement for a low-cost AOE damage option like Burning Hands, which makes it a nice complement to the Sorcerer’s limited number of spells known even though you can learn to cast Dragon’s Breath, which is more powerful. Damage resistance is always welcome, and Chromatic Warding will protect your tiny pool of hit points somewhat. You may still want Absorb Elements, though.

Gem: The short range on the breath weapon is a problem for the Sorcerer, but everything else is great. You can learn Absorb Elements to handle the common damage types available to Chromatic and Metallic, so resistance to a damage type not covered by Absorb Elements is tempting. Gem Flight is a good way to get temporary flight without learning to cast Fly, but you may still want other ways to fly like Polymorph when you need to do something outside of combat.

Metallic: The 15-foot range is dangerously short, and the additional breath weapon types don’t solve that problem. If you invest enough in Constitution to make the extra breath weapons reliable, you’re over-investing. Just cast spells.

Customized Origin:

  • ClassicPHB: +2/+1 increase and damage resistance. The Dragonborn’s signature trait is their breath weapon, which provides a helpful short-range AOE damage option that will complement your limited number of spells known.
  • DraconbloodEGtW: Roughly equivalent to the standard Dragonborn, but if you’re playing your party’s Face you might enjoy Forceful Presence, and Darkvision is very helpful. If you miss the damage resistance, learn Absorb Elements.
  • RaveniteEGtW: Vengeful Assault isn’t helpful for a class that generally doesn’t use weapons.

Default Rules:

  • ClassicPHB: The Strength bonus is wasted, but you get a Charisma bonus and permanent damage resistance. The breath weapon can be a helpful, especially at low levels when your spell options are limited, but the short range can be risky because it brings you close to melee.
  • DraconbloodEGtW: Roughly equivalent to the standard Dragonborn, but if you’re playing your party’s Face you might enjoy Forceful Presence, and Darkvision is very helpful. If you miss the damage resistance, learn Absorb Elements.
  • RaveniteEGtW: Bad ability spread.

DuergarMMoM

The Duergar’s inability to share their innate spells dramatically reduces their usefulness for the Sorcerer. You’re basically just here for Darkvision and the defenses.

DwarfPHB

For the updated version of the Duergar, see their separate race entry on this page.

Customized Origin: One +2 increase and a second increase from your subrace, poison resistance, and weapon and tool proficiencies that you probably won’t need.

  • DuergarSCAG: Invisibility as an innate spell is nice, but that’s the only big appeal here. Sunlight Sensitivitiy is a pain, and Enlarge/Reduce isn’t especially useful for the Sorcerer.
  • HillPHB: Bonus hit points are always nice.
  • MountainPHB: Medium armor and a second +2 increase. The second +2 increase isn’t especially helpful for the Sorcerer, but with 14 Dexterity, 16 Constitution, and medium armor, you’re be incredibly durable without sacrificing Charisma.

Default Rules: No dwarf options offer a Charisma increase, which makes them a hard option for the Sorcerer.

  • DuergarSCAG: Bad ability spread.
  • HillPHB: Lots of extra hit points, but you’ll need to avoid spells which make attacks or rely on saving throws. Doable, but it’s very difficult.
  • MountainPHB: Medium armor and Constitution are a significant increase in your durability. With enough investment in Constitution you can be durable enough to survive fighting at close range. However, lagging on Charisma compared to other sorcerers means that it’s harder for you to use spells which make attacks or which allow saving throws. If you just want armor, I would consider starting with a level in Fighter to get heavy armor and shields, then go straight sorcerer after that.

Earth GenasiMMoM

Sorcerers should not be in a situation where they need Blade Ward. If you’re worried, learn Shield. Pass Without Trace is a great addition, but it’s not enough.

EladrinMMoM

Sorcerers get access to Misty Step, but with such a limited number of spells known, Fey Step is a great replacement. Unfortunately, most sorcerers can’t do much with Trance or with proficiency in Perception.

ElfPHB

For the updated versions of the Eladrin, the Sea Elf, and the Shadar-Kai, see their separate race entries on this page.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases (each subrace provides an additional +1), Darkvision, one skill (which you should leave as Perception).

  • DrowPHB: The innate spellcasting is great and it’s Charisma-based so it will remain perpetually useful. The only problem is Sunlight Sensitivity.
  • EladrinMToF: Free teleportation on a short rest means that you don’t need to spend one of your spell slots to do it. The rider effects on the teleportation are Charisma-based, too, which is perfect for the Sorcerer.
  • Eladrin (Variant)DMG: Similar to the standard Eladrin, but you give up the cool rider effect for four weapon proficiencies which you won’t use.
  • High ElfPHB: More cantrips never hurt, but the Sorcerer already gets more cantrips than nay other class. Strongly consider the Drow or the Drow Half-Elf if you just need an extra cantrip.
  • Pallid ElfEGtW: The skill bonuses are decent and the Innate Spellcasting is nice, but Sleep is obsolete as soon as you get it and there are plenty of other races which provide Invisibility as an innate spell.
  • Sea ElfEGtW / MToF: Only in an aquatic campaign.
  • Shadar-KaiMToF: Not as useful for the Sorcerer as the Eladrin’s more frequent teleportation.
  • Wood ElfPHB: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer, so you’re basically falling back on the core racial traits.

Default Rules:

  • DrowPHB: Bonus Charisma and some free spells, but Sunlight Sensitivity can be a pain.
  • EladrinMToF: Bonus Charisma and free teleportation with a Charisma-based rider effect.
  • Eladrin (Variant)DMG: Bad ability spread
  • High Elf: Bad ability spread.
  • Pallid ElfEGtW: Bad ability spread.
  • Sea ElfMToF: Bad ability spread.
  • Shadar-KaiMToF: Bad ability spread.
  • Wood ElfPHB: Bad ability spread.

FairyWBtW / MMoM

Flight and two good spells that you can both cast for free once per day and re-cast using spell slots.

Firbolg

UpdatedMMoM: The Sorcerer desperately needs to know more spells, so innate spellcasting is always welcome. Speech of Beast and Leaf is useful, too, thanks to the Sorcerer’s dependence on Charisma.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: The innate spellcasting adds some useful options which reduce the need to handle the same problems with your limited spells known.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.

Fire GenasiMMoM

The extra spells aren’t good enough to justify your race. Basically any other race with innate spellcasting will be more impactful. Play tiefling if you’re dead set on having darkvision and fire resistance.

GenasiEEPC

For the updated versions of the Air Genasi, the Earth Genasi, the Fire Genasi, and the the Water Genasi, see their separate race entries on this page.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases (each subrace provides an additional +1), but the vast majority of the Genasi’s traits come from the subraces.

  • Air: Pick a race that can fly.
  • Earth: Difficult terrain is rarely a problem unless you’re running around in melee. Pass Without Trace is good, but it’s not enough on its own.
  • Fire: Similar in many ways to the Tiefling, but the Fire Genasi’s spellcasting is Constitution-based while the Tiefling’s is Charisma-based, so the Tiefling has a huge advantage.
  • Water: Only in an aquatic campaign.

Default Rules: The Constitution increase is nice, but there are no Charisma increases to be found here.

  • Air: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.
  • Earth: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.
  • Fire: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.
  • Water: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.

GithMToF

For the updated versions of the Githyanki, the Githzerai, see their separate race entries on this page.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases (each subrace provides an additional +2), but the bulk of your notable racial traits come from your subrace.

  • Githyanki: Medium armor is a fantastic AC boost, and coupled with Misty Step for free the Githyanki offers some interesting options for the Sorcerer, walking a fine line between the durability of the Dwarf and mobility of the Eladrin.
  • Githzerai: Mental Discipline will protect you from common status conditions, and the innate spellcasters offers several useful options which will help you stretch your limited number of spells known.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

  • Githyanki: Bad ability spread and the armor and innate spellcasting don’t make up for it.
  • Githzerai: Bad ability spread and the innate spellcasting doesn’t make up for it.

GithyankiMMoM

Mage Hand is a staple utility spell, and Misty Step is a staple escape mechanism for spellcasters. Getting both is a helpful complement to the Sorcerer’s extremely limited number of spells known. An extra skill and tool proficiency help you to expand beyond Face skills, and damage resistances are always nice.

GithzeraiMMoM

Sorcerers have poor Wisdom saves and an extremely limited number of spells known, so Mental Discipline and innate spellcasting are very welcome. Shield is a staple defensive option, so getting it for free means that you can learn something more interesting..

GnomePHB

For the updated version of the Deep Gnome, see their separate race entry on this page.

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases (each subrace offers a +1 increase), Darkvision, and Gnome Cunning.

  • Deep (Svirfneblin)EEPC / SCAG: Superior Darkvision is nice, but I would only consider this in a subterranean campaign where Stone Camouflage will be useful.
  • ForestPHB: Minor illusion is a good cantrip, but a race which provides more innate spellcasting will typically be more helpful for the Sorcerer.
  • RockPHB: Tinker is barely useful.

Default Rules:

  • Deep (Svirfneblin)EEPC / SCAG: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.
  • ForestPHB: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.
  • RockPHB: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.

Goblin

UpdatedMMoM: Nimble Escape helps you stay out of melee, minimizing the need for things like Misty Step. Fury of the Small applies to spells, including AOE spells, but remember that saving for half damage will also reduce the damage from Fury of the Small so you want to apply the damage bonus when an enemy fails their save.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases and Darkvision. Nimble Escape helps you stay out of melee, minimizing the need for things like Misty Step. Fury of the Small applies to spells, including AOE spells, but remember that saving for half damage will also reduce the damage from Fury of the Small so you want to apply the damage bonus when an enemy fails their save.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

Goliath

UpdatedMMoM: Stone’s Endurance is great on a class with no armor proficiency and tiny hit dice, but if you do a good job avoiding drawing attacks, Stone’s Endurance will rarely matter. You could use that to justify not investing in Constitution, but where else are you going to put those resources? Sorcerers are among the most SAD classes in the game.

Classic (Customized Origin)EEPC: +2/+1 increases, one skill, and damage resistance. Stone’s Endurance adds the equivalent of a barbarian hit die worth of ability to endure damage, but with the Sorcerer’s terrible AC your enemies will cut through that damage mitigation very quickly. Don’t get complacent.

Classic (Default Rules)EEPC: Bad ability spread.

Half-ElfPHB

Customized Origin:

  • Aquatic Half-ElfSCAG: Only in an aquatic campaign.
  • Drow Half-ElfSCAG: Good, Charisma-based innate spellcasting. The leveled spells will do a lot to help with your limited number of spells known.
  • High Half-ElfSCAG: If you want more spellcasting, you’ll get more out of the Drow Half-Elf.
  • Standard Half-ElfPHB: Sorcerers only get the typical two skills from class and two from background, and if you want to be your Party’s Face two additional skills means that you have much more flexibility without sacrificng Face skills.
  • Wood Half-ElfSCAG: Nothing that the Sorcerer needs.

Default Rules: Perfect ability score increases, allowing you to get 16’s (maybe even a 17) in Dexterity, Constitution, and Charisma.

  • Aquatic Half-ElfSCAG: Only in an aquatic campaign.
  • Drow Half-ElfSCAG: Some decent innate spells, and Faerie Fire isn’t on the Sorcerer’s spell list. Even better, the DC is Charisma-based so it will be consistently reliable.
  • High Half-ElfSCAG: Sorcerer cantrips and wizard cantrips overlap almost entirely. Avoid offensive options except potentially Booming Blade since it doesn’t care about your spellcasting modifier. Generally the drow half-elf is a better choice because you get both a cantrip and some leveled innate spells.
  • Standard Half-ElfPHB: Two skills are great if you plan to be the party’s Face.
  • Wood Half-ElfSCAG: Nothing useful for the Sorcerer.

Half-OrcPHB

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, Darkvision, and one skill. Relentless Endurance is great on low-durability characters like the Sorcerer, but Savage Attacks is wasted.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

HalflingPHB

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, Lucky, and Brave. Lucky is less useful on the Sorcerer than on many other classes since most spells require other people to roll saves instead of requiring you to attack so you’re rolling far fewer d20’s than a martial character or a warlock.

  • GhostwiseSCAG: Telepathy is nice, but not especially important.
  • LightfootPHB: Naturally Stealthy is rarely useful without Cunning Action.
  • LotusdenEGtW: The innate spellcasting is decent, but it’s Wisdom-based so you’ll find that it’s unreliable due to the poor save DC compared to your sorcerer spells.
  • StoutPHB: Poison damage is really common, so resistance to poison on top of a solid set of core racial traits works well.

Default Rules: A bit of Dexterity is nice, but Lucky is less useful on the Sorcerer than on many other classes since most spells require other people to roll saves instead of requiring you to attack so you’re rolling far fewer d20’s than a martial character or a warlock.

  • GhostwiseSCAG: Nothing useful for sorcerers.
  • LightfootPHB: Bonus Charisma. Naturally Stealthy is rarely useful without Cunning Action.
  • LotusdenEGtW: Bad ability spread, and the innate spellcasting is Wisdom-based.
  • StoutPHB: Nothing useful for sorcerers.

HarengonWBtW / MMoM

Hare Trigger will help you get your big spells out early in a fight when they’re most impactful, and Rabbit Hop can get you out of melee without more expensive options like Misty Step or Kinetic Jaunt.

Hobgoblin

UpdatedMMoM: Fey Gift becomes purely a non-combat support option. Fortune of the Many is still fine, but it’s not enough on its own.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases and Darkvision. Saving Face is the big selling point here, and you can use it for high-value spell attacks or save it for a saving throw.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

Human

Customized Origin:

  • Standard: With perfect ability scores on the table for every race, there is no reason to play the Standard Human.
  • Variant: The Customizing Your Origin rules make no change to the Variant Human.

Default Rules:

  • Standard: Sorcerers really only need Charisma, so most of the bonuses are outright wasted.
  • Variant: You still get a crucial bonus to your Charisma, and you get a feat.

KalashtarERLW

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, damage resistance, Advantage on Wisdom saving throws, and probably the best racial telepathy option.

Default Rules: A Charisma increase, and you’ll be really good at Wisdom saving throws despite not being proficient. Defensively, the Kalashtar is very solid.

KenkuVGtM

UpdatedMMoM: Two additional skill proficiencies will help you to expand beyond Face skills. Kenku Recall is great, but it might not be good enough to replace Enhance Ability.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases and two skills. Expert Forgery and Mimicry will rarely be impactful. Fun theme, but nothing mechanically impressive.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

Kobold

UpdatedMMoM: Draconic Cry is dangerous because of its short range. Kobold Legacy offers a few useful options, but I would go for Crafty over the others. Fear is less of a problem when you don’t need to approach enemies or make attacks, and an extra sorcerer cantrip is nice but not essential.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2 increase, Darkvision, Sunlight Sensitivity. Pack Tactics can offset Sunlight Sensitivity, but if you’re suffering Disadvantage on spell attacks it’s typically easier to just switch to a spell that requires a saving throw instead. Sorcerers aren’t as heavily reliant on attack rolls as the Warlock, so Pack Tactics isn’t quite as tempting.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: There aren’t enough leveled spells that rely on attack rolls to make Pack Tactics worthwhile for the Sorcerer, especially without a Charisma increase.

LeoninMOoT

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, Darkvision, and one skill. Daunting Roar is neat, but the range is tiny so it’s only an interesting option for melee builds. Even then, the Fallen Aasimar has a similar effect with a damage bonus and a Charisma-based DC.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

Lizardfolk

UpdatedMMoM: Natural Armor and the temporary hit points from Hungry Jaws are a great improvement to your durability. Unfortunately, the skills are poor options for the Sorcerer.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases, two skills, and 13+ natural armor. The natural armor will match Mage Armor, saving you the trouble of learning it.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

LocathahLR

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, two skills, and 12+ natural armor. You won’t use anything beyond the static stuff, but Leviathan Will is a great defense against numerous problematic status conditions.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

LoxodonGGTR

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, resistance to charm and fear effects, and 12+Con natural armor. Basically a worse locathah unless you plan to put ability score increases into Constitution and ignore Dexterity entirely.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

Minotaur

UpdatedMMoM: All of the Centaur’s interesting traits are tied up in Strength.

Classic (Customized Origin)GGTR: All of the Centaur’s interesting traits are tied up in Strength.

Classic (Default Rules)GGTR: Bad ability spread.

Orc

UpdatedMMoM: Adrenaline Rush and Relentless Endurance provide some helpful insurance on a frail class, but they won’t make you better as a sorcerer. Consider the variant human to take Eldritch Adept for Fiendish Vigor.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases, two skills, and Darkvision. Aggressive is a bad idea for the Sorcerer.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Bad ability spread.

OwlinSCoC

Flight, Darkvision, and proficiency in Stealth. The Fairy and the Winged Tiefling are likely better choices, but the Owlin is still very good.

Satyr

UpdatedMMoM: Charisma-based spellcasting synergizes well with the Satyr’s skill proficiencies, and Magic Resistance is always nice.

Classic (Customized Origin)MOoT: +2/+1 increases, two skills, one instrument, and magic resistance. While the Satyr isn’t as durable as the Yuan-Ti Pureblood, the additional skills can help you expand your non-magical capabilities, which may be worth the trade.

Classic (Default Rules)MOoT: Dexterity for you AC, Charisma for your spells, Magic Resistance to keep you alive, and two free skills to help you serve as your party’s Face.

Sea ElfMMoM

Sorcerers can learn to cast both Darkvision and Water Breathing, but with so few spells known, that’s a tragic misuse of your limited resources. In an aquatic campaign, getting Darkvision and the ability to breath underwater from your race are crucial, so the Sea Elf is a good choice. Other aquatic races which offer innate spellcasting (especially more recent races which can re-cast their spells) may be more effective, but the Sorcerer is still a fine choice for the Sea Elf.

Shadar-KaiMMoM

Sorcerers get access to Misty Step, but with such a limited number of spells known, Gift of the Raven Queen is a great replacement. Unfortunately, most sorcerers can’t do much with Trance or with proficiency in Perception. Eladrin is generally a better fit for the Sorcerer since sorcerers shouldn’t rely on the Shadar-Kai’s damage resistance to stay alive, but a shadar-kai sorcerer is still a fine build.

Shifter

UpdatedMMoM: Beasthide’s durability is nice, but not amazing. Swiftstride looks nice to get out of melee, but it won’t get you out of grapples so you probably still want Misty Step, and then why bother with Swiftstride? The skill options aren’t great.

Customized OriginERLW: +2/+1 increases (each subrace provides an additional +1), Darkvision, and one skill. Shifting is the Shifter’s signature trait, offering a short-duration combat buff which includes temporary hit points which can be a good defense on top of the Sorcerer’s tiny hit point maximum.

  • Beasthide: +1 AC likely won’t make a big difference unless you’re already getting some AC from another source like Mage Armor or the Draconic Bloodline’s natural armor. if you have those options you’ll be able to withstand a few hits, but you’re still using d6 hit dice so don’t get complacent because you have Beasthide.
  • Longtooth:Strength is not a good choice.
  • Swiftstride: Learn Misty Step.
  • Wildhunt: Too situational.

Default RulesERLW: None of the Shifter’s subraces offer a Charisma increase.

  • Beasthide: Bad ability spread.
  • Longtooth: Bad ability spread.
  • Swiftstride: Swiftstride offers a Charisma bonus, and the Shifting benefit can keep you from being bogged down in melee. Shifting offers a good use for your Bonus Action and the temporary hit points reduce the need for options like False Life.
  • Wildhunt: Bad ability spread.

Simic HybridGGTR

Customized Origin: The Customizing Your Origin rules make no meaningful changes to the Simic Hybrid. You can move the Constitution increase around, but increasing Constitution is still the best way to use that increase.

Default Rules: The flexible ability increase can go into Charisma, and some Animal Enhancement options can help fill some functions which would normally require magic, thereby opening up space for you to learn other spells.

Tabaxi

UpdatedMMoM: Climb speeds and feline agility are less appealing when you can cast spells that allow you to fly and teleport, but they might save you a spell known, which is a huge benefit for the Sorcerer since they learn so few spells. The two skills are fine, but they’re not great options for the Sorcerer.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increases, two skills, and Darkvision. Feline Agility is the Tabaxi’s signature trait, and it’s not useful enough that the Tabaxi is an easy choice when the Standard Half-Elf is an option, but at least it’s not Aggressive so you can still use it to run away.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: A small Charisma increase, and the increased Dexterity provides a helpful boost your AC. You also get two skills, which puts the Tabaxi close to the Standard Half-Elf, but the Half-Elf gets another ability score increase and isn’t limited to a fixed list of skills so they’re more versatile.

TieflingPHB

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increase, Darkvision, and damage resistance, plus most subraces/variants give you Charisma-based innate spellcasting, which is great for the Sorcerer. These were already great benefits for the Sorcerer prior to the introduction of the Customizing Your Origin rules, but the ability to rearrange your ability increases adds a lot of flexibility, so more of the Tiefling’s subraces/variants may be worth exploring depending on your build.

  • AsmodeusPHB/MToF: Decent spellcasting, but it won’t change your tactics in any meaningful way.
  • BaalzebulMToF: More directly offensive than the Asmodeus Tiefling, but roughly equivalent.
  • DispaterMToF: Some interesting utility options that would work well in an intrigue campaign, but I don’t know if they’ll be consistently useful in a typical adventure.
  • FiernaMToF: Great spells for social situations.
  • GlasyaMToF: Great spells if you want to be sneaky, tricky, or otherwise subtle.
  • LevistusMToF: Roughly equivalent to Asmodeus, but more ice themed.
  • MammonMToF: Situational utility options.
  • MephistophelesMToF: Flame Blade is garbage.
  • ZarielMToF: You do not want smite spells. This is not a good idea.
  • Variant: FeralSCAG: The Customizing Your Origin optional rules make the Feral variant obsolete. All it does is rearrange your ability score increases.
  • Variant: Devil’s TongueSCAG: Similar to Fierna, but more useful in combat and less useful outside of combat.
  • Variant: HellfireSCAG: Roughly equivalent to Asmodeus. The difference is mostly personal preference.
  • Variant: WingedSCAG: Permanent non-magical flight, darkvision, and fire resistance. Maybe not as fun as innate spellcasting, but likely more impactful.

Default Rules: Bonus Charisma, fire resistance, and some free spells. With the addition of variants and subraces, you have a ton of room to customize your sorcerer.

  • AsmodeusPHB/MToF: A perfectly fine option, but the Intelligence is wasted and you can find better spells from Devil’s Tongue.
  • BaalzebulMToF: The Intelligence is wasted, but access to Thaumaturgy could be nice.
  • DispaterMToF: Dexterity means better AC, and the spells are great if you want to be sneaky or tricky.
  • FiernaMToF: The Wisdom is largely wasted, but the spells are great for a Face.
  • GlasyaMToF: Dexterity means better AC, and the spells are great if you want to be sneaky or tricky.
  • LevistusMToF: Constitution means more hit points, and the spells offer a nice mix of defensive, offensive, and utility options.
  • MammonMToF: The Intelligence is wasted, and the leveled spells are highly situational.
  • MephistophelesMToF: The Intelligence is wasted, and sorcerers should rarely be in melee combat enough to use Flame Blade.
  • ZarielMToF: Way too melee-centric.
  • Variant: FeralSCAG: Bad ability spread.
  • Variant: Devil’s TongueSCAG: The replacement spells are absolutely better than the normal Tiefling spells.
  • Variant: HellfireSCAG: Burning Hands is probably worse than Hellish Rebuke for most Sorcerers.
  • Variant: WingedSCAG: Flight is a massive advantage, especially without requiring Concentration.

TortleTP / MMoM

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, one skill, and AC fixed at 17 without worrying about actual armor. Not quite as good as the Mountain Dwarf (poison resistance, Darkvision) or the Githyanki (innate spellcasting), but pretty close and you don’t need 14 Dexterity to fill out medium armor like the Mountain Dwarf and the Githyanki do.

Default Rules: 17 natural armor is nice, but that’s really all that you get.

Triton

UpdatedMMoM: The innate spellcasting offers some additional options to complement the Sorcerer’s limited number of spells known, but they’re not broadly useful enough for that to make a huge difference, so you’re mostly riding on cold resistance and Darkvision.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: Three +1 increases and Darkvision. The innate spellcasting is neat, but the spells are very situational.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: Constitution and Charisma increases, plus some innate spellcasting which will help compensate for your tiny number of spells known.

VedalkenGGTR

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases, one skill, and one tool. Vedalken Dispassion provides an excellent defensive option, and Tireless Precision can make you more effective at some non-magical stuff. If you just want durability the Yuan-Ti Pureblood may be more effective, but the Vedalken is still a very effective choice.

Default Rules: Bad ability spread.

VerdanAcInc

Customized Origin: +2/+1 increases and one skill, but in the context of the Customizing Your Origin rule, the advantages which make the Verdan special largely vanish. Black-Blood Healing is neat but not essential, and Telepathic Insight can’t compete with races like the Kalashtar, the Vedalken, and the Yuan-Ti Pureblood.

Default Rules: Constitution and Charisma is a perfect combination for a Charisma-based spellcaster, and getting Persuasion for free is great. You’ll almost certainly be your party’s Face, and the Verdan’s Telepathic Insight can go a long way to address language barriers despite its limited capability.

WarforgedERLW

Customized Origin: The Customizing Your Origin rules make no meaningful changes to the Warforged. You can move the Constitution increase around, but increasing Constitution is still the best way to use that increase.

Default Rules: Considering the fact that warforged are crafted rather than born, the idea that they can be a sorcerer with a bloodline defies logic. But mechanically, it works fine. The flexible ability increase goes into Charisma, and the Warforged’s other traits will make you more durable than a typical sorcerer before considering spells. A warforged with Mage Armor or the Draconic Bloodline’s natural armor would have an AC of 14+Dex totally unequipped, allowing you to meet the AC of characters in light armor and a shield.

Water GenasiMMoM

I would consider a water genasi sorcerer in an aquatic campaign. Sorcerers can already get all of the Water Genasi’s spells, but sorcerers are strictly limited on their number of spells known, so extras are nice (provided that you can actually make them useful).

Yuan-Ti

UpdatedMMoM: Sorcerers generally aren’t very durable, so the additional defenses of poison resistance (immunity with the old version) and Magic Resistance are very welcome. The innate spellcasting is mostly useless.

Classic (Customized Origin)VGtM: +2/+1 increase, Darkvision, poison immunity, and Magic Resistance. Very durable, but the innate spellcasting is mostly useless.

Classic (Default Rules)VGtM: An excellent Charisma increase, and the combination of Magic Resistance and Poison Immunity make you very durable. Unfortunately, the innate spellcasting is borderline useless.

Dragonmarks

Dragonmarked DwarfERLW

Dragonmark traits replace your subrace.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Warding: Mage Armor once per day is enough, and access to Armor of Agathys is very tempting, but little else here is useful for the Sorcerer.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Warding: Bad ability spread.
Dragonmarked ElfERLW

Dragonmark traits replace your subrace.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Shadow: Most of the spellcasting is already available to the Sorcerer, but Mark of Shadow’s spell list does introduce Pass Without Trace. The Innate Spellcasting includes some staple illusion options, and the skill bonuses work great for a sneaky Sorcerer. If you want to play a stealthy sorcerer, or if you see the Arcane Trickster as too much rogue and not enough magic, this is a great choice.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Shadow: The ability increases work, and the innate spellcasting is nice, but nearly all of the dragonmark spells are already on the spell list. Still, for a sorcerer in a stealthy party this makes a lot of sense thematically and offers some helpful options to stretch your spellcasting a bit further.
Dragonmarked GnomeERLW

Dragonmark traits replace your subrace.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Scribing: Most of the spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list, and the other benefits are only situationally useful.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Scribing: The ability increases work, but most of the dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list.
Dragonmarked Half-ElfERLW

Dragonmark traits replace some of your normal racial traits, as described in the entry for each Dragonmark.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Detection: Almost all of the spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list, and as much as I like See Invisibility it’s only situationally useful so there’s very little to be gained here.
  • Mark of Storm: The dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list and the other benefits are far too situational.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Detection: The ability increases work, but most of the dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list.
  • Mark of Storm: The ability increases work, but most of the dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list.
Dragonmarked Half-OrcERLW

Dragonmark traits replace ALL of your racial traits.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Finding: Some new spells from the Druid’s spell list, plus Hunter’s Mark, but none of the spells are especially useful and the Sorcerer has no way to make Hunter’s Mark meaningful. The skill bonuses are on Wisdom-based skills which the Sorcerer has little reason to invest in.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Finding: Bad ability spread.
Dragonmarked HalflingERLW

Dragonmark traits replace your subrace.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Healing: I would only go this route if you’re desperate to have healing spells but for some reason don’t want to play the Divine Soul.
  • Mark of Hospitality: Good but not amazing. The Persuasion bonus is awesome, and innate spellcasting provides some easy utility. The spell list includes some new options like Goodberry and Aid, but the rest are already on your spell list. Consider taking Extended Spell to extend the duration of Aid to 16 hours so that you can cast it the night before adventuring and save yourself a spell slot.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Healing: Bad ability spread. If you want healing spells, look at the Divine Soul subclass.
  • Mark of Hospitality: The ability increases work, and with the exception of Sleep the entire spell list is new to the Sorcerer. Unfortunately the spells tend to be situational options which are difficult to justify with the Sorcerer’s extremely limited number of spells known.
Dragonmarked HumanERLW

Dragonmark traits replace ALL of your normal racial traits.

Customized Origin:

  • Mark of Finding: See Mark of Finding under Dragonmarked Half-Orc, above. Mechanically, the final racial traits are identical.
  • Mark of Handling: Unless you’re really worried about beasts, there’s little to be gained here. The ability to use Animal Friendship and Speak With Animals against monstrosities is neat, but very situational.
  • Mark of Making: Very little new here, and Magic Weapon doesn’t benefit you at all.
  • Mark of Passage: If you want teleportation, play an eladrin. If you want Pass Without Trace, play Mark of Shadow. This works, but everything it gives you is available in a better package.
  • Mark of Sentinel: With the exception of Shield of Faith, everything here is either already on your spell list or you don’t want to cast it.

Default Rules:

  • Mark of Finding: See Mark of Finding under Dragonmarked Half-Orc, above. Mechanically, the final racial traits are identical.
  • Mark of Handling: The ability score increases work, and many of the dragonmark spells are new to the Sorcerer’s spell list, but unless your DM is going to let you tame creatures beyond your class features this isn’t especially useful.
  • Mark of Making: The ability increases work, but most of the dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list.
  • Mark of Passage: The ability increases work, but most of the dragonmark spells are already on the Sorcerer’s spell list.
  • Mark of Sentinel: Bad ability spread.

Lineages

Published in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything and beyond, no Lineage exists prior to the introduction of the Customizing Your Origin rules, and as such each lineage has flexible ability score increases. Every Lineage has the choice of +2/+1 increases or three +1 increases except for the Custom Lineage which only receives a single +2 increase.

Lineages are applied on top of a base race. While the Custom Lineage isn’t affected by your base race, the three lineages published in Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft (Dhampir, Hexblade, and Reborn) borrow from your base race thanks to the Ancestral Legacy trait. Despite selecting a base race, you do not count as a member of your race for the purposes of any other effect, such as qualifying for feats or using magic items.

Custom LineageTCoE

A +2 increase, either a skill or Darkvision, and a feat. I recommend Darkvision so that you don’t need to get it from a spell. If you pick a feat which provides an ability score increase you can start at 18 Charisma, giving you a significant numerical advantage until at least 8th level when most characters are expected to hit 20 in their primary ability score. If you really want that extra skill proficiency, consider the Skilled or Skill Expert feats, or consider playing a Standard Half-Elf.

DhampirVGTR

Vampiric Bite is totally wasted on the Sorcerer, so you’re basically just here for Spider Climb and Ancestral Legacy. If you take skills from Ancestral Legacy, the Tabaxi provides similar benefits, so either the Tabaxi or another lineage will be a more effective choice. If you take a movement speed, any flying race will be more effective.

HexbloodVGTR

The Hexblood’s spells aren’t easy for the Sorcerer to use to great effect, but two new spells that you can re-cast with spell slots is still a good benefit. You can use Ancestral Legacy to get two skills or flight, in which case the Hexblood is similar to the Fairy but with more situational spells.

RebornVGTR

The Reborn’s resistances are nice, but sorcerers need to be in the back where they’re relatively save and the Reborn’s resistances are less important. Knowledge From a Past Life can be a helpful boost to skills, and Ancestral Legacy can let you expand beyond Face skills.