Light Sensitivity is a relatively uncommon trait for Dungeons and Dragons 5e creatures. It seems like one of those things you would expect to be more common among dungeon denizens. Here’s a sample of the text from a cloaker:

Light Sensitivity
I asked Bing Image Creator to draw me a monster that hates the light.

While in bright light, the cloaker has disadvantage on attack rolls and Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.

Light Sensitivity

As the DM you have some decisions to make about how light sensitive creature will behave. Are they smart/wise enough to stay out of the light, or will they rush in and attack in spite of it? Do they attack unlit party members preferentially, or are they drawn to light like a moth?

Creatures with Light Sensitivity:

CreatureCreature TypeCRSource
Cloaker MutateAberration10Phandelver and Below: The Shattered Obelisk
DarklingFey0.5Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse
GibberlingAberration0.25Minsc and Boo’s Journal of Villainy
MeenlockFey2Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse
Shadow DemonFiend (Demon)4Monster Manual

Using Light Sensitive Creatures in Combat

Light sensitive creatures give your players the chance to learn something useful about their enemies, and to make decisions with consequences. Relatively few playable races in D&D lack dark vision, and so the use of light may be unnecessary for most members of a given party. As a result, in may not be immediately obvious to the players how these creatures are affected. Once they do make the discovery, then the players have a decision to make. They can create light to help with a few stray monsters. By doing so, they may attract the attention of more dangerous foes.

You can also use monsters with light sensitivity in more thematic ways. You wouldn’t expect these creatures to be out in broad daylight. It may stand to reason that they have been driven from their homes. This also gives you a chance to pit your players against stronger creatures than they would normally fight. The threat is reduced due to the disadvantage on attack rolls.

You can find other creatures with interesting traits in our Ability Check articles.

Categories: Ability Check


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