Autognomes in DnD 5E explained

First published in 1991 for the Spelljammer setting, autognomes have now whirred their way into Dungeons and Dragons 5E with Spelljammer: Adventures in Space. In this article, we will break down everything you need to know to play one of these mechanical marvels.

A servile start, but independent future

Autognomes are constructs made by rock gnomes for a variety of purposes, be it protection, assistance, or pure experimentation. However, sometimes an autognome finds itself striking out on its own in the world either through a malfunction, separation/death of its creator, a desire to escape cruelty, or a simple and sudden curiosity about what’s out there and what they could be.

All autognomes resemble their creator to some extent, be it just simple height and proportions, or incorporating the gnome’s facial features and hair color into the design. However, the internal mechanism that drives the autognome’s existence can vary wildly depending on which gnome created them. For example, some may use a series of gears, whilst others may use biological components, like a still-beating heart and other organs connected to the autognome’s inner workings.

You’re a construct, Harr13: Playing an Autognome

Playing an autognome gives you the following traits:

Ability Scores – You can increase one ability score by 2 and a different score by 1; alternatively, you can increase three different ability scores by 1.

Size – Small

Creature Type – Construct

Speed – 30 ft.

Age – Autognomes can live up to 500 years.

Armored Casing – Your base AC is 13 + your Dexterity modifier while you aren’t wearing armor.

Built for Success – After you roll a d20 for an attack roll, saving throw, or ability check, but before the result of the roll is resolved, you can add a d4 to the total of the roll. You can use this ability a number of times per long rest equal to your proficiency bonus.

Healing Machine – You can expend a Hit Die to heal when the Mending cantrip is cast on you, to do so, roll the Hit Die and add your Constitution modifier to the total. This amount of healing you receive is a minimum of one hit point.

In addition, you were constructed to benefit from certain healing spells that don’t normally affect constructs, these are:

  • Spare the Dying
  • Cure Wounds
  • Healing Word
  • Mass Healing Word
  • Mass Cure Wounds

Mechanical Nature – Being a construct provides you with certain benefits:

  • You have resistance to poison damage and advantage on saves against being poisoned.
  • You have advantage on saves against being paralyzed.
  • You don’t need to eat, drink, or breathe.
  • You are immune to all diseases.

Sentry’s Rest – When taking a long rest, you must spend at least 6 hours in an inactive, motionless state rather than sleeping. During this time, you appear inert, but you aren’t unconscious and can see and hear as normal.

Specialized Design – You gain proficiency with two tools of your choice from the PHB.

Languages – You can speak, read, and write Common and one other language that you and your DM agree is appropriate for your character.

We hope you’ve enjoyed taking guard duty all night with the autognome as much as we have. Have you played an autognome yet? Are you planning to? If you want to learn more about other race options, check out our races section, or if you want to understand the world’s greatest roleplaying game better, check out our how to play section. Good luck out there adventurers, and until next time, remember, get an oil change after every adventure!

Editor-in-Chief