“And I know all of us will, like, totally be fab in the upcoming battle! We just did our nails, and our hair is on point. There’s, like, no way that silly vampire won’t be SUPER intimidated. Stay strong, girls!”—Elle the Wood Elf
Even if that speech didn’t inspire you, your character could still reap the benefits.
How? Elle, the Wood Elf, took the Inspiring Leader feat. It might not give the player the gift of a silver tongue, but it means they can confer profound mechanical benefits when your party has some downtime or if you’re gearing up for a fight. How does it work? Once more into the breach!
How Inspiring Leader Works
A character must spend 10 minutes giving a speech to rouse their compatriots for the coming adventures. You can’t use Inspiring Leader during a fight since a single round encompasses six seconds. Additionally, no matter how many people listen to you, your Inspiring Leader feat only affects six people at a time. You’re included in that six.
Listeners gain temporary hit points equal to your level plus your Charisma modifier. For example, if you are playing a level 7 character with a Charisma score of 18, your modifier is +4. You could give each listener 11 temporary hit points.
GameCows Tip: Temporary hit points pad out your regular hit points so you can stay conscious longer. When you take damage, you lose temporary hit points first.
Once you’ve used this feat, you can’t give temporary hit points to those same six people again until they have completed a short or long rest. Even if they lose their temporary hit points in battle, they cannot gain more from your Inspiring Leader feat until they’ve rested. However, using this feat, you can give temporary hit points to other people.
Is Inspiring Leader Any Good?
When you decide whether or not a feat is good, there are a few factors for consideration. Some feats are only suitable for specific classes, weapons, combat styles, or roles within a party. Others are widely regarded as generally good for everyone. Still others are typically ignored by the DnD community for being weak or too situational.
You need to consider whether the feat is worth giving up an Ability Score Increase. With a few exceptions, the only times you choose a feat are at ASIs, so the feat needs to be worth giving up +2 to one of your Ability Scores or +1 to two of your Ability Scores. Inspiring Leader is one of the few feats considered good enough to be worth the expense, even at very low levels.
Inspiring Leader allows you to give temporary hit points to everyone in your party on a daily basis. Those hit points scale with your level and your Charisma modifier which means that even if you’re only level 4 with a +2 Charisma modifier, you’re still giving six people 6 temporary hit points every day.
Which Classes Should Use It?
Technically, a character of any class with a Charisma score of at least 13 can take the Inspiring Leader feat. However, the effects of the feat are based on your Charisma score, so characters with higher Charisma scores can do more with it. Typically, the most charismatic members of a party tend to be Bards, Paladins, Sorcerers, and Warlocks since their spellcasting is Charisma-based.
However, Rogues and Fighters are also surprisingly good candidates because they have more opportunities to take feats. Rogues can take six possible feats, and Fighters can take seven. Even if your Charisma score isn’t high, you have lots of opportunities to take the feat, and it is good enough to justify the expense of an Ability Score Increase.