Rules: Difficulty Class

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Difficulty Class Reference

Example 5th Edition: A 5th level character with a +3 ability modifier and proficiency would have a +7 skill modifier. Range 8-17-27.

Example Pathfinder: A 5th level character with a +3 ability modifier and class skill bonus and max ranks would have a +11 skill modifier. Range would be 12-22-31. A 5th level character with a +3 ability modifier and class skill bonus and min ranks would have a +7 skill modifier. Range would be 8-17-27.

  • Trivial (DC 5): a task that is so easy that isn't worth a check. An adventurer can almost always succeed automatically.
  • Easy (DC 10): requires a minimum level of competence or a bit of luck to accomplish.
  • Moderate (DC 15): requires a bit more competence to accomplish. Can be completed more often than not by a character with both natural aptitude and specialized training.
  • Hard (DC 20): include anything beyond the capabilities of the average person without aid or exceptional talent. Even with a bit of training and skill you still need some luck to pull it off (or maybe some specialized training).
  • Very Hard (DC 25): achievable only by especially talented individuals. Nobody else should even bother trying.
  • Formidable (DC 30): achievable only by the most trained, experienced, and talented individuals, and they probably still need help to pull it off.
  • Nearly Impossible (DC 35): can't be done without assistance unless you're basically a demigod.


Pathfinder Ranges

Level Range Ability Min 10 20
1-3 2 7 16 26
4-6 2 10 19 29
7-9 2 13 22 32
10-12 2 16 25 35
13-15 2 19 28 38
16-18 2 22 31 41
19-20 2 25 34 44

5th Edition Level Ranges

Level Range Ability Min 10 20
1-4 2 5 14 24
5-8 2 6 15 25
9-12 2 7 16 26
13-16 2 8 17 27
17-20 2 9 18 28