Dungeons & Dragons 5e
cleric subclasses

There are currently 18 official subclasses of clerics in D&D 5E, but note that 4 of them are from the Plane Shift: Amonkhet setting, which is not well known and which is a bit odd- it likely will not fit well with whatever campaign you are playing. 

Ambition Domain

(Plane Shift: Amonkhet p.27) Ambition Domain clerics believe that ambition trumps everything else, including family or friends. They can cause disadvantage on attacks against them by flashing a flare of light at attackers, can create up to four illusory duplicates which can cast spells and cause the cleric’s attacks to have advantage, can become invisible, and deal extra damage when using cantrips.

Arcana Domain

(Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide p.125) Arcana Domain clerics are focused on learning and on arcane magic. They gain proficiency in Arcana and learn two wizard cantrips. These clerics can use their channel divinity to turn or banish one celestial, elemental, fey, or fiend. When they heal a creature they can also end one spell on that creature, their cantrips do more damage than normal, and most excitingly, they get a number of arcane spells which they can cast. This is a good subclass for people who want a mix of both divine and arcane magic, much like the Divine Soul sorcerer.

Blood Domain

(This is an unofficial Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition subclass from the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting p.101) Blood Domain clerics use the power of blood as a sacrifice. These clerics’ channel divinities let them either control a creature or to know the status of a creature if the cleric has that creature’s blood on hand, including their location, and they also have the ability to see through their eyes or hear through their ears. These clerics also cause extra damage when attacking, can injure themselves to recoup some spell slots, and have an aura which causes damage to foes.

Death Domain

(Dungeon Master’s Guide p.96) This is included in the DMG for DM use when building evil characters, so before you create an Death Domain cleric you will need to clear it with your DM that they are OK with this. Death Domain clerics are focused on causing death and turning death into undeath. They get a bunch of bleak necromantic spells added to their toolbox, have stronger necromantic magics, and can add necromantic damage to many of their other attacks. This is not a class for bright, happy-go-lucky types.

Forge Domain

(Xanathar’s Guide to Everything p.18) Forge Domain clerics focus on the forge, to the surprise of absolutely nobody. They can wear heavy armor and use smith’s tools, they can imbue a weapon or a piece of armor with magic for the day, they can magically create (or copy) a metal item, they are resistant/immune to fire damage, they have a bonus to their AC, they deal extra fire damage when attacking, and they can become resistant to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.

Grave Domain

(Xanathar’s Guide to Everything p.19) Grave Domain clerics focus on the transition from life to death, and sometimes back again. When healing creatures which are at 0 hit points they do not need to roll, instead healing them for the maximum possible amount. They also learn the spare the dying cantrip for free and can use it from 30 feet away as a bonus action, they can sense the presence of undead, they can target a creature to make it vulnerable to the damage from the next successful attack on it, they can turn critical hits on nearby creatures into normal hits, they deal extra damage on their cantrips, and they can convert the death of an enemy into healing for a friend. Lots of cool features for the gothiest of the Dungeons & Dragons 5E clerics.

Knowledge Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.59) Knowledge Domain Clerics are the scholars of the cleric world. They learn extra languages, become proficient in extra skills, and can use their channel divinity to become proficient in any skill or tool. They can read minds and implant thoughts into the minds of other creatures, they add their WIS modifiers to their cantrip damage, and they can see the past of an object or area. Go to a knowledge domain cleric in Dungeons & Dragons if you need to know something or want something done well.

Life Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.60) The Life Domain is the go-to domain for people looking for a cleric in Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition which will heal the party like no other. These clerics turn up the usually high clerical healing to 11. They are proficient in heavy armor so they will need less healing themselves. They heal extra with all of their healing spells, while healing themselves at the same time. They can use their channel divinity to heal, and they can also use divine strike to smite their enemies. He brings the pain and the heal.

Light Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.60) Light Domain Clerics use light and flame to best effect. If you like burning things in holy fire, this is the cleric for you. They get light as a bonus cantrip, they get a bunch of burning spells, they can cause disadvantage on attacks, they can use channel divinity to banish darkness while causing radiant damage, they add their WIS modifier to their cantrip damage, and they can also cause their foes to have disadvantage on saving throws against spells causing fire or radiant damage. Some clerics just want to watch the world burn.

Nature Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.61) Nature Domain clerics have a strong bond with nature and can use the powers of nature to their own benefit. They gain a druid cantrip, several extra skills, and are proficient in heavy armor, making them a bit of a powerhouse. They also can use their reaction to grant resistance to certain types of damage from nature, they can use their channel divinity to charm animals or plants, and they can smite their foes with divine strikes using several different types of natural damage. Not a druid, but they are stepping on their toes a tiny bit. I like to think they would be friends though.

Order Domain

(Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything p.31, Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica p.25) Order Domain clerics believe in the importance of order & the law- no chaotic clerics to be found here. They have extra powers to compel others to do their will, as well as using their powers to do extra damage to their foes in a variety of exciting ways.

Peace Domain

(Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything p.32) “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.” Peace Domain clerics excel at brokering peace and strengthening bonds between people, whether that be through their exceptional insight & persuasion skills or their abilities to bond groups together. OK, so they bond groups which are in combat against other groups, and don’t necessarily bond those two groups to each other, but you have to start somewhere, right? The bonded group gets some really sweet perks to make them work together as amazing fighting units.

Solidarity Domain

(Plane Shift: Amonkhet p.24) Solidarity Domain clerics work to unite all who are deemed worthy of the glory of the afterlife. They are proficient with heavy armor, when they take a help action can also make a weapon attack several times a day, can use their Channel Divinity to either heal en masse or as a reaction to add +10 to an ally’s attack roll, deal extra damage in weapon attacks, and heal extra as well.

Strength Domain

(Plane Shift: Amonkhet p.25) Strength Domain clerics are all about physical strength, unsurprisingly. They get a druid cantrip and an extra proficiency, are proficient with heavy armor, can use their Channel Divinity to add +10 to one of their or a nearby ally’s d20 rolls, do extra damage in weapon attacks, and are resistant to piercing, slashing, and bludgeoning damage.

Tempest Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.62) Tempest Domain clerics are loving the storm and all that it brings with it. They gain proficiency with martial weapons and heavy armor, so they are able to lay down the pain on the battlefield. In addition, they are able to use their reaction to smite anyone who hits them with lightning or thunder, they can use their channel divinity to deal maximum damage with any lightning or thunder attacks, they push away any creature they hit with thunder or lightning, they cause extra thunder damage every time they hit with a weapon strike, and they can fly. Envision a cross between Storm and Thor and this is what these clerics are rocking. And in Dungeons & Dragons you can worship Thor if you are a tempest cleric, so it tracks.

Trickery Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.63) Trickery Domain Clerics are a mischievous lot. Worshipping deities of trickery will do that to you. They can bestow advantages on stealth to others, they can use their channel divinity to either create 1-4 illusions of themselves which they can cast spells through or to become invisible for a turn, and they have divine strikes which poison their opponents. If you enjoy starting trouble, this may be the Dungeons & Dragons 5E cleric for you.

Twilight Domain

(Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything p.34) These clerics rock the twilight. The darkvision of Twilight Domain clerics is unsurprisingly through the roof- they can see out to 300 feet, and can share this ability with someone else as well. They also get a twilight sanctuary, which gives bonuses to anyone ending their turn in it, and in addition these clerics can do extra damage and even fly (if it’s dark out). Pretty sweet. Extra goth. Still not as goth as the grave clerics though.

War Domain

(Player’s Handbook p.63) War Domain clerics love battle. They are proficient with martial weapons and heavy armor, they can use their bonus actions to attack again, they can use their channel divinities to either add 10 to their attack roll or to another’s attack roll, they can strike their foes with divine strikes when they hit with their weapons, and they gain resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage. These clerics are tanks in battle.

Zeal Domain

(Plane Shift: Amonkhet p.28) Zeal Domain clerics are all about dedication and passion- these are the zealots. They are proficient with martial weapons and heavy armor, can make a second weapon attack as a bonus action, can use their Channel Divinity to deal maximum damage to fire and thunder damage rolls, can push enemies 10 feet away when striking them with thunder damage, deal extra weapon damage, and when brought to zero hit points can rush towards that enemy and deal a huge amount of damage to them before falling unconscious.