Introduction

Sure, 3rd edition gave us the Warforged, but Spelljammer dates back to 2nd edition, so the Autognome may be DnD’s first playable construct. The playable version of the Autognome shares similarities with the Warforged (durability, mostly), but the Autognome is clearly designed more for skill and tool use than for combat. It shares none of the Autognome monster’s penchant for malfunctioning and exploding.

Comparing the playable Autognome to the monster stat block, there’s a lot that’s different. The monster is immune to paralysis and petrification and has Darkvision, but they also have something whacky happen when they take a lot of damage at once, up to and including exploding. They also have an electric attack which is conspicuously absent from the playable race. Honestly, there’s nothing tying the two together except art and the fact that they’re constructs.

For players, the Autognome is well-suited to Dexterity-based builds, especially those which can make effective use of tools. Healing Machine allows you to heal yourself with Mending, which saves you the trouble rushing to your next Short Rest, making the Autognome a good choice for your party’s Defender. Built for Success is easily the Autognome’s most noteworthy feature, allowing you to add a d4 to d20 rolls after seeing the outcome of the roll, so you never have to worry about missing an attack or failing a save or check by 1. The two tool proficiencies can get you Thieves’ Tools, Chef’s Tools, or whatever other tool seems interesting.

Looking for ways to accumulate d4’s on rolls is a great combination with Built for Success. Spells like Guidance and Bless are excellent, and certain class features like Peace Domain’s Emboldening Bond and Divine Soul’s Favored of the Gods. However, keep in mind that this can quickly overwhelm 5e’s bounded math, trivializing basically any attack, check, or save. Or maybe that’s what you want. I’m not your mom.

Table of Contents

Disclaimer

RPGBOT uses the color coding scheme which has become common among Pathfinder build handbooks, which is simple to understand and easy to read at a glance.

  • Red: Bad, useless options, or options which are extremely situational. Nearly never useful.
  • Orange: OK options, or useful options that only apply in rare circumstances. Useful sometimes.
  • Green: Good options. Useful often.
  • Blue: Fantastic options, often essential to the function of your character. Useful very frequently.

We will not include 3rd-party content, including content from DMs Guild, in handbooks for official content because we can’t assume that your game will allow 3rd-party content or homebrew. We also won’t cover Unearthed Arcana content because it’s not finalized, and we can’t guarantee that it will be available to you in your games.

The advice offered below is based on the current State of the Character Optimization Meta as of when the article was last updated. Keep in mind that the state of the meta periodically changes as new source materials are released and this article will be updating accordingly as time allows.

RPGBOT is unofficial Fan Content permitted under the Fan Content Policy. Not approved/endorsed by Wizards. Portions of the materials used are property of Wizards of the Coast. ©Wizards of the Coast LLC.

Classes

Artificer

Autognomes feel like natural artificers. Two additional tool proficiencies is nice, and since you can learn Mending you can heal yourself outside of combat. Built for Success stacks with Flash of Genius. Disappointingly, though, there are no clear builds where the Autognome really shines.

Barbarian

The damage and condition resistances and immunities are great on any martial character, and Built for Success is always great.

Bard

The Autognome’s natural armor is better than any of the Bard’s armor options, and Built for Success is great insurance for the Bard’s many skills.

Cleric

You should not under any circumstances play an Autognome Peace Cleric. You should not under any circumstances use the spell Bless while playing said Peace Cleric. You should not under any circumstance find an ally to cast Guidance since you’re busy concentrating on Bless. You certainly should never use Built for Success while doing any of the previously-mentioned things. And never, ever, under any circumstances, should you then triumphantly throw a fistful of d4’s on the table. Don’t do it.

Druid

The Autognome’s natural armor is better than any of the Druid’s manufactured armor options (unless you have a way around the prohibition on metal armor), and Built for Success is great on any character. Armored Casing, Healing Machine, and Mechanical Nature likely don’t function while using Wild Shape.

Fighter

Armored Casing is great for Dexterity-based builds, giving you as much AC as full plate once you hit 20 Dexterity. Mechanical Nature gives you some helpful protections against hazards frequently faced by front-line martial characters, and Built for Success can rescue a saving throw that you fail by a point or two, providing an extra layer of protection. Outside of combat, Healing Machine is a great way to get back up to full hit points without stopping for a Short Rest, but you’ll likely need someone else to cast Mending. With all the extra ASIs provided by this class, though, you could afford to take Magic Initiate at level 6 and pick up Mending, another cantrip, and a once-a-day spell without falling behind on the fundamental math.

Monk

The Autognome’s natural armor and damage resistances are great for the Monk, especially if you pick a subclass where you can safely dump Wisdom like Way of the Kensei. Built for Success is always great, and once you have Diamond Soul, saving throws feel much less threatening.

Paladin

Armored Casing is great for Dexterity-based builds, giving you as much AC as full plate once you hit 20 Dexterity. Mechanical Nature gives you some helpful protections against hazards frequently faced by front-line martial characters, and Built for Success can rescue a saving throw that you fail by a point or two, providing an extra layer of protection on top of Aura of Defense. Outside of combat, Healing Machine is a great way to get back up to full hit points without stopping for a Short Rest or dipping into Lay on Hands, but you’ll likely need someone else to cast Mending.

Ranger

Armored Casing is great for Dexterity-based builds, giving you as much AC as full plate once you hit 20 Dexterity. Mechanical Nature gives you some helpful protections against hazards frequently faced by front-line martial characters, and Built for Success can rescue a saving throw that you fail by a point or two, providing an extra layer of protection. Outside of combat, Healing Machine is a great way to get back up to full hit points without stopping for a Short Rest, but you’ll likely need someone else to cast Mending.

Rogue

Armored Casing is better than any of the Rogue’s manufactured armor options, and Built for Success is great insurance since the rogue makes frequent skill checks and since Sneak Attack is often a high-stakes attack with no second chance to hit.

Sorcerer

Mage Armor will match Armored Casing, and Built for Success is always great.

Warlock

Armored Casing will be more effective than light armor, so for anyone except the hexblade it’s an improvement. If you do go for hexblade and dive into melee, Mechanical Nature provides some helpful defenses and Healing Machine allows you to heal yourself outside of combat by casting Mending.

Wizard

Mage Armor will match Armored Casing, and Built for Success is always great.