At first level a Ranger selects a type of creature from the favored enemy list. Favored Enemy grants +2 to damage rolls against the chosen creature type. At 5th level and every 5 levels thereafter (10th, 15th, and 20th) the Ranger selects an additional creature type from the favored enemy list and his damage bonus against all favored enemy types increases by 2.
The original DDO text above (re Ranger's Favored enemies) probably dates back to the days where you could only gain Favored Enemies from specific ranger levels, which is no longer the case in DDO. Ranger level is no longer a controlling factor. You currently get +2 damage vs. each and every Favored Enemy for each Favored Enemy feat you have, regardless of how you got them, and regardless of your class(es) or level.
- If a non-Ranger Gnome character has Undead as a Favored Enemy from the Vistani enhancement tree, and Reptilian from the Gnome Racial enhancement tree, they do +4 damage to both those Favored Enemies.
- If that same Gnome character was a Level 20 Ranger, they would also have their 5 base Favored enemies from 20 Ranger Levels, for +14 to all 7 Favored Enemies.
- That same Level 20(+) Gnome Ranger might also have 1 additional favored enemy from Deepwood Stalker enhancements, 1 from the Harper enhancement tree, 1 the Falconry enhancement tree, plus 1 from the Primal Avatar Epic Destiny tree, as well as the 7 the previous example (Vistani & Gnome & Ranger 20), for a total of 11 Favored Enemies; that character then does +22 extra damage to all favored enemies.
- (mutually exclusive)
- Enhancement trees
- Deepwood Stalker, Tier V: Animal, Dragon, Dwarf, Elf, Giant, Gnoll, Goblinoid, Halfling, Human, Magical Beast, Monstrous Humanoid, Orc, Plant, Reptilian, or Vermin
- Falconry enhancement, Tier I: Animal
- Harper Agent enhancement, Tier III: Aberration / Construct / Dragon / Evil Outsider / Giant / Monstrous Humanoid / Undead
- Vistani Knife Fighter, Tier I: Undead
- Epic Destinies:
- Primal Avatar: Aberrations / Constructs / Undead
- Deepwood Stalker enhancements include several effects that increase your defenses and damage versus your favored enemies
Specific exceptions or examples are listed in parenthesis after the race. Click each race (or type) to go to its page, where you can find detailed descriptions and a list of all monsters of that race (or type).
Notes re Ranger's Favored Enemies:
- 1) For Outsiders, a Ranger may select "Chaotic Outsider", "Evil Outsider", and/or "Lawful Outsider" (each separately). The "Race" category of the monster does not distinguish by alignment, so these Favored Enemies tend to overlap some Outsiders and miss others. Mephits are "True Neutral", not Chaotic, Evil or Lawful, and so are not covered by any of a Ranger's possible choices.
- 2) In DnD, "Fey" and "Vermin" are valid selections for Ranger class Favored Enemy - it is not clear why they are not in DDO (although one could guess that, in the case of "Fey", there simply are not enough representatives to make that worthwhile). They are available via Deepwood Stalker Tier V enhancements.
Note also that...
- Humanoid bane covers many of the above types. From the Hold Person spell, it includes Kobolds, Goblinoids, Troglodytes, all Player Races (except Warforged), "...and more." It is only found on randomly-generated weapons, and is not a possible choice for a Ranger's Favored Enemy.
- Incorporeal creatures fit multiple types above (e.g. Evil Outsider, Undead). Both Lesser and Greater Incorporeal Bane exist in game, on the Phase Hammer, Assassin's Kiss, and Epic Assassin's Kiss and on randomly generated Cannith Crafted weapons. Note that Incorporeal Bane does not imply Ghost touch.
- Natural bane, a designation found only on historic randomly-generated and historic Cannith Crafted weapons, covers all of Animals, Vermin, Magical Beasts, Plants and Fey.
- Unnatural bane, a designation found on Hunter's Slayer, randomly-generated weapons, and Cannith Crafted weapons, covers all of Monstrous Humanoids, Aberrations, and Undead.
- Ooze bane does not make a weapon immune to breakage or splitting. (See Everbright)
- Note that several races are listed under multiple types. This is unavoidable, as certain factors cause monsters of the same race to fall under different types. For example, most blue dragons are Dragon type, but Auraxyllon and Eternity are undead, and so fall under the Undead type. The same goes for undead beholders, humans, and rats. Similarly, "Evil Outsiders" may or may not also be "Lawful Outsiders" or "Chaotic Outsiders", and so on.
- Note on choosing a bane weapon: The general rule of thumb is to choose the bane type that corresponds to that particular monster's type, not race. In the example above, Auraxyllon is affected by undead bane, but not by dragon bane, even though it is a blue dragon. Likewise, Death Knights are affected by undead bane, but not human bane. The exception to this rule is that monsters of any of the various outsider types can also be affected by lawful outsider bane or chaotic outsider bane if those monsters are lawful or chaotic, respectively.
For more information on Dungeons & Dragons monsters, you can visit the D20 SRD: Monster page.