Last Updated on December 14, 2021
Welcome to our guide to the Telekinetic feat in Dungeons & Dragons 5e. If you’re in the market for a thematically flavorful, mechanically useful feat with a whole load of interesting applications, you’re in the right place.
If you want to pretend to be a Jedi or everyone’s favorite, Eggo-loving tween with psychic powers, you’re also in the right place.
What’s a Feat?
Feats are an optional, woefully underused feature of D&D 5e.
Whenever your character has the option to take an Ability Score Increase, you can instead opt to choose from an extensive list of feats – special abilities, buffs, and tweaks that have the potential to completely rework the way you play your character or just provide a nice incremental buff.
How Does the Telekinetic Feat Work in DnD 5e?
The Telekinetic feat gives you a +1 bump to either your Wisdom or Charisma ability score, teaches you a souped-up version of the Mage Hand cantrip, and lets you use your mage hand to push or pull people and things around as a bonus action.
You gain the power to move objects and people around using the power of your mind. When you choose this feat, you gain the following abilities:
- Increase your Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma score by 1 to a maximum of 20.
- You learn the mage hand cantrip. You can cast mage hand without the need for verbal or somatic components, and you can make the spectral hand invisible.
- If you already know mage hand, taking the Telekinetic feat increases the spell’s range by 30 feet when you cast it. Its spellcasting ability is the ability increased by this feat.
- As a bonus action, you can attempt to telekinetically shove one creature you can see within 30 feet of you. The target of the shove has to succeed on a Strength saving throw with a DC equal to 8 + your proficiency bonus + the ability modifier of the score increased by this feat. If the target fails their saving throw, you move it either 5 feet toward you or away from you. A creature can willingly fail this save.
Source: Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything
Basically, whether you want to flavor it as force pushing or pulling an enemy, blasting people with psychic powers, channeling Jean Grey, or surrounding yourself with trained ghosts, this feat turns your character into a walking, talking X-File.
Is the Telekinetic Feat Good?
First, let’s get the simple stuff out of the way. Most of the time in D&D 5e, taking a feat means giving up a coveted ability score increase (ASI) entirely.
Because your ability scores (and therefore your modifiers) drive everything from a character’s saving throws, attack rolls, and ability checks to spellcasting modifiers and weapon damage, the opportunity cost of taking a feat can vary pretty dramatically depending on whether an ASI would result in one or more of your modifiers increasing.
While you’re obviously getting a smaller ability score increase and are limited to just Wisdom and Charisma (which can have the effect of limiting the classes that can make the best use of this feat), Telekinetic at least softens the blow of skipping an ASI somewhat.
It’s also worth keeping in mind that, because the save DC for your push-and-pull effect is going to be dependent on the ability score you increase when taking this feat, Telekinetic really is most effective on classes which benefit from a high Wisdom or Constitution score.
Now, onto the more fun stuff.
Learning the mage hand cantrip is great. This spell is rightfully considered among the best cantrips in the game for its versatility and flavor, alongside stuff like prestidigitation, minor illusion, and thaumaturgy.
From stealing a guard’s keys to creating distractions, picking flowers, poking trapped treasure chests, and any number of other fun and creative applications, the only limit to mage hand is your imagination (and its weight limit of 10 pounds, of course).
Casting Time: 1 Action
Range/Area: 30 feet
Components: V, S
Duration: 1 Minute
A spectral, floating hand appears at a point you choose within range. The hand lasts for the duration or until you dismiss it as an action.
The hand vanishes if it is ever more than 30 feet away from you or if you cast this spell again.
You can use your action to control the hand. You can use the hand to manipulate an object, open an unlocked door or container, stow or retrieve an item from an open container, or pour the contents out of a vial.
You can move the hand up to 30 feet each time you use it. The hand can’t attack, activate magic items, or carry more than 10 pounds.
Telekinetic would be a pretty solid pickup for any character if it just gave you mage hand as written in the Player’s Handbook.
However, this feat also lets you make the hand invisible if you choose, and you don’t need to do any elaborate hand waggling and shouting of ancient incantations to cast it.
This is perfect if you want to maintain the impression that you’re moving things with your mind rather than a small, ghostly hand behind the emerald curtain.
It makes Telekinetic an amazing tool for pulling off subtle acts of trickery. It’s somewhat akin to the rogue’s mage hand legerdemain, although you sadly can’t use Telekinetic to manipulate thieves’ tools.
Lastly, the ability to push or pull an enemy (or ally) around the map is not only a deliciously evocative ability but has more than a few interesting interactions and uses in combat.
First of all, if you’re playing the kind of terminally squishy spellcaster who prefers to keep their enemies at a distance, using your Telekinetic shove to move an enemy in melee range effectively gives you the chance to disengage as a bonus action on each turn, like a rogue.
Next, there’s the obvious chance to move enemies into the path of environmental hazards like traps, open pits, fire, the party barbarian, etc.
In fact, if you have a party member with the Polearm Master feat, you can shove an enemy within 10 feet of them and watch them get bonked.
On the flip side, you can also use your Telekinetic shove to drag your allies out of harm’s way.
This is one of the few effects in the game where a target can willingly fail their saving throw, so take full advantage of your ability to yank your fellow party members out of grapples or away from troublesome monsters and traps or just maneuver them in between you and a gang of charging orcs.
Which Class Should Take the Telekinetic Feat?
As mentioned above, because this feat is pretty reliant on having a descend Wisdom or Charisma score anyway, classes that prioritize one of those stats are going to get the most out of this feat – although you can feasibly stick it on just about any character and have an alright time.
Classes that play best with the Telekinetic feat include…
Who’d have thought warlocks could get any spookier?
Use Telekinetic to drag your enemies into the reach of AoE spells like Evard’s Black Tentacles and the Hunger of Hadar and double up on the pushing power of your eldritch blast if you take the Repelling Blast invocation.
With a d6 hit die, sorcerers need all the help they can get keeping their enemies at a distance.
“Come here.” *Smite* Need I say more?
Like the warlock, druids are great at area of effect spells that inflict damage when enemies move through them. Well, sometimes your enemies need a little push.
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I played my first tabletop RPG (Pathfinder 1e, specifically) in college. I rocked up late to the first session with an unread rulebook and a human bard called Nick Jugger. It was a rocky start but I had a blast and now, the better part of a decade later, I play, write, and write about tabletop RPGs (mostly 5e, but also PBtA, Forged in the Dark and OSR) games for a living, which is wild.