D&D movie Honor Among Thieves certainly doesn’t shy away from its source material, with characters very explicitly brought to life from the classes of the Player’s Handbook – from Chris Pine’s bard and Michelle Rodriguez’s barbarian to the druid, sorcerer and paladin making up the rest of the party.
Warning: spoilers for Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves follow.
For more… villainous persons, we also get a good helping of necromantic Wizards, and what appears to be a Pact of the Blade warlock in their service, with a sword shimmering with green infernal energy.
From what we know so far, any prospective sequel will almost certainly see our beloved party return, possibly with a power boost as they ‘level-up’ with new capabilities.
For a film so clearly drawing from the base classes in the sourcebooks, it would make sense to see some of the missing classes in any upcoming sequels.
But for a film so clearly drawing from the base classes in the sourcebooks, it would make sense to see some of the missing classes in any upcoming sequels – so the fanbase is sated and general cinemagoers have a clear sense of each class identity.
The Cleric is one class that gets briefly name-dropped in Honor Among Thieves, in reference to the class’ divine healing abilities, which are still incapable of treating wounds caused by a Red Wizard’s dagger – a handy way to stop their healing from trivialising all life-and-death stakes in the plot.
We could see a Cleric showing up as a low-level healer, or one with specific strengths – such as curing poison or removing a curse from someone, without necessarily being able to resurrect the dead with impunity. The D&D movie is careful not to overly involve any gods with such a low-level party, though we could see the influence of larger forces in a sequel where they’ve progressed into a higher tier of play.
The Monk, too, is a good contender for any future film, with a clear martial artist identity and different skill set from the party members already featured in Honor Among Thieves. It’s also a good opportunity to showcase not only what the Monk is, but what it could be.
At the recent D&D Creator Summit, lead rules designer Jeremy Crawford reportedly said that the Asian stereotypes underpinning the Monk class have been “something on our long list of things we’re going to improve” and will be subject to changes in One D&D, such as a shift from ‘Ki points’ to ‘Spirit points’. (Thanks, Daniel Kwan.) Introducing a Monk character that doesn’t fall into those stereotypes, while still enjoying the thrill of their martial abilities, would be a great way to shift the perception of the class alongside upcoming rule changes.
The standard sword-and-shield Fighter is probably the least likely class to show up on-screen, given that we already have two party members who are good at close-quarters combat: the Barbarian and Paladin, with the latter already proving an adept swordsman. The base Fighter is intentionally the simplest class to play in D&D, but that means it doesn’t always feel overly distinct from the way other weapon-wielding heroes operate. We could see a background character or antagonist filling this position, though.
A D&D movie sequel would be a good opportunity to showcase not only what the Monk is, but what it could be.
Ranger is a tricky one. The Ranger is supposed to be an expert tracker, traveller and fighter with an affinity for the wilds and some basic magical abilities, which can feel like a Fighter, Rogue and Druid all rolled into one.
Given we have some representation of natural magic already (Doric the Druid) this doesn’t seem like the most pressing inclusion, though we could see a ranger appearing with a similar role as Strider in The Lord of the Rings, to help the party traverse dangerous terrain and guide them towards their destination in safety.
We’d expect any future film to explore new locales and regions beyond Neverwinter and the Underdark, and a ranger would be a smart addition to aid that kind of exploration. We’ve heard rumours of iconic D&D ranger Drizzt Do’Urden popping up in a D&D TV series, though, which could tie into the films in some way.
Lastly, there’s always D&D classes outside the Player’s Handbook. The Artificer is an interesting outlier, as the 13th class and one that treads the line between magic and technology, with the ability to create arcane devices that aid them in their adventures. A high-Intelligence character would also be a big help to the existing party, embarrassingly overlooked by Intellect Devourers as they are, and also show a way for any sequel film to cover very distinct thematic ground.
Obviously, making a good Dungeons & Dragons movie is more complicated than a checklist of required character archetypes – but we hope some of the so-far-absent classes will get an equal chance to shine next time around.