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D&D Spells

Cognisant

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I'm going to give my thoughts on each spell, how it's used, how it could be used, alternatives, etc.

Cantrip Conjuration
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 60 feet
Components: V S
Duration: Instantaneous
Classes: Sorcerer, Wizard
You hurl a bubble of acid. Choose one creature within range, or choose two creatures within range that are within 5 feet of each other. A target must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw or take 1d6 acid damage. This spell's damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 5th Level (2d6), 11th level (3d6) and 17th level (4d6).
I really like the two-for-one aspect of this, imo every attack cantrip should have some gimmick that makes it more effective when certain conditions are met, provided they're the sort of conditions that will occur at least once or twice every session. What I'm not a fan of is that by RAW this cantrip has zero utility, the acid can't be used to damage anything but a creature, you can't even use it to melt dead bodies. I find that second part particularly immersion breaking, there's no reason why I can't use a spell to "attack" a dead body after all isn't that exactly the same as using the spell on an undead body? Allowing the spell to be used on objects (granted it may take several castings to achieve the desired effect) changes it from a forgettable sub-optimal ranged attack to a must have utility spell and after all isn't that what a cantrip is supposed to be?

Cantrip Necromancy
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S
Duration: 1 round
Classes: Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard
You create a ghostly, skeletal hand in the space of a creature within range. Make a ranged spell attack against the creature to assail it with the chill of the grave. On a hit, the target takes 1d8 necrotic damage, and it can’t regain hit points until the start of your next turn. Until then, the hand clings to the target. If you hit an undead target, it also has disadvantage on attack rolls against you until the end of your next turn. This spell's damage increases by 1d8 when you reach 5th level (2d8), 11th level (3d8), and 17th level (4d8).
The effect isn't elemental and it isn't a touch spell, why not call it Ghost Hand or something like that?
The damage is okay, the no-healing effect is okay if you're fighting a troll, overall I find this spell confusing and a bit disappointing, preventing an enemy from healing is a very thematic necromancer tactic but if the effect only lasts one round and depends upon landing a hit I don't see it being very useful. The enemy only has to temporarily get away from you or wait until you miss before downing a healing potion, so this really only pays off against enemies who have passive regeneration and giving disadvantage to undead makes this seem more like a paladin's spell than a necromancer's.

Ghost Hand (alternative)
Cantrip Necromancy
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S
Duration: 1D4+4 rounds
Classes: Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard
You create a ghostly, skeletal hand in the space of a creature within range. Make a ranged spell attack against the creature to assail it with the touch of the grave. On a hit the target cannot regain hit points until the end of the spell's duration. This does not prevent "Spare the Dying" from stabilizing a creature at zero hit points.

Now it's a nice simple short duration curse, none of this spamming the same cantrip every round nonsense, thematically it feels evil to use and is scary to get hit by (despite not doing any damage), it doesn't affect undead because fighting the undead is the last thing any competent necromancer should be doing, and the counter to someone dying under the effect of this spell is another necromancy school spell which is not only thematically appropriate it adds a value to "Spare the Dying" which every other healing spell/ability doesn't have.

Cantrip Evocation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S M (A bit of phosphorus or wychwood, or a glowworm)
Duration: Concentration, Up to 1 minute
Classes: Bard, Sorcerer, Wizard
You create up to four torch-sized lights within range, making them appear as torches, lanterns, or glowing orbs that hover in the air for the duration. You can also combine the four lights into one glowing vaguely humanoid form of Medium size. Whichever form you choose, each light sheds dim light in a 10-foot radius.
As a bonus action on your turn, you can move the lights up to 60 feet to a new spot within range. A light must be within 20 feet of another light created by this spell, and a light winks out if it exceeds the spell’s range.
A little overly complicated, has some rave party utility, the duration could be longer but I've never had a dm who actually tracked the duration of it, in theory the lights should prematurely trigger ambushes but I've never seen it happen. Personally I'd make the lights stationary and permanent until you leave the area or dismiss them so if someone wants to spend an hour decorating a forest clearing with hundreds fairy lights they can and this would make their use in combat more tactical since you would be placing lights as you need them (like the on-target mage light spell from Skyrim).

Cantrip Transmutation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 30 feet
Components: V S
Duration: Instantaneous
Classes: Druid
Whispering to the spirits of nature, you create one of the following effects within range:
You create a tiny, harmless sensory effect that predicts what the weather will be at your location for the next 24 hours. The effect might manifest as a golden orb for clear skies, a cloud for rain, falling snowflakes for snow, and so on. This effect persists for 1 round.
You instantly make a flower blossom, a seed pod open, or a leaf bud bloom.
You create an instantaneous, harmless sensory effect, such as falling leaves, a puff of wind, the sound of a small animal, or the faint odor of skunk. The effect must fit in a 5-foot cube.
You instantly light or snuff out a candle, a torch, or a small campfire.
Rather than a cantrip these should just be at-will abilities all druids get by default, as much as I love using (abusing) the Magic Initiate feat I think flavor stuff like this should be strictly class specific, this is what you get for being a druid that makes being a druid something special.

Cantrip Evocation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S
Duration: Instantaneous
Classes: Warlock
A beam of crackling energy streaks toward a creature within range. Make a ranged spell attack against the target. On a hit, the target takes 1d10 force damage.
The spell creates more than one beam when you reach higher levels: two beams at 5th level, three beams at 11th level, and four beams at 17th level. You can direct the beams at the same target or at different ones. Make a separate attack roll for each beam.
So you just spam the same cantrip all game every game? No thanks.
That being said I like the invocations that go with it, being flung about by some unseen force is very creepy.

Eldritch Wrath (alternative) Meh changed my mind
Requirement: Pact of the Tome
Cantrip Evocation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S
Duration: Instantaneous
Classes: Warlock
Choose a target and specify which direction you want them to be thrown by an unseen force, the target makes a strength saving throw to resist being thrown and on a success is moved up to 10ft but doesn't take any damage and remains standing. Upon failure the target is thrown 20ft, takes 1D10 force damage in addition to any falling/environmental damage and lands prone, anyone the target collides with also takes 1D10 force in addition to any falling/environmental damage.

Warlocks get some great locomotion spells like Misty Step and Spider Climb, this spell rewards creativity and environmental awareness, finally there's just something creepy about being thrown about by an unseen force.


I'll continue to work my way through the spell list if anyone's interested.
 

Jennywocky

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Yeah, the joke of Eldritch Blast is that warlocks are meant to spam it. However, despite how annoying that is, it's essentially the best cantrip damage spell in the game.

  • Force damage, which is rarely resisted. (Compare to Fire Bolt or Ray of Frost or whatever.)
  • it's d10 per bolt
  • you can split targets at higher levels w/ multiple bolts.
I've seen this used with Elven Accuracy for devastating results at higher levels. Also, for all these reasons, players routine take the Spell Initiate (?) feat to get a free cantrip and/or even pick up a level of Warlock (esp with sorc or bard) JUST to get Eldritch Blast. Anyway, it's WHY Warlock spams it, typically -- considering they only get two spell slots, right? (rejuv after short rest, not long rest)

It's a boring workhorse but it's great at what it does.

---

For Chill Touch, it's an effective spell in the sense of an attacking NPC either trying to Bonus Action heal themselves (like Healing Word) and/or in a party of NPCs attacking you, the casters can't heal the guy everyone is trying to kill for a round. It's not just about "trolls." It depends on what your GM is throwing at you.
 

Cognisant

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Cantrip Evocation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V S
Duration: Instantaneous
Classes: Sorcerer, Wizard
You hurl a mote of fire at a creature or object within range. Make a ranged spell attack against the target. On a hit, the target takes 1d10 fire damage. A flammable object hit by this spell ignites if it isn’t being worn or carried. This spell's damage increases by 1d10 when you reach 5th level (2d10), 11th level (3d10), and 17th level (4d10).
This is what I consider an attack cantrip done right, the effect is simple, it has some basic utility, my only gripe would be that there's no situational benefit like with Acid Splash but then again it doesn't really need it, if you set fire to something important (like a ship's sails) you could waste an enemy's entire turn which is just awesome.
10/10 cantrip, love it.

Cantrip Divination
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Touch
Components: V S
Duration: Concentration, Up to 1 minute
Classes: Cleric, Druid
You touch one willing creature. Once before the spell ends, the target can roll a d4 and add the number rolled to one ability check of its choice. It can roll the die before or after making the ability check. The spell then ends.
This cantrip is OP as fuck and yet it's treated as a dad spell, rather than being used to make characters even better at something they're already good at I've only seen it used to help characters do something they're struggling with which is more often than not hilarious.

The wizard casts Rope Trick but struggles to climb the rope.
Cleric "here let me give you some Guidance".
Wizard "thanks daaaad".

10/10 ultimate dad spell.
 

Jennywocky

guud languager
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Yeah, Fire Bolt is great... if what you are fighting is not resistant to fire. Which starts happening a lot by level 5-6, at least in our campaigns, as it's the most common form of damage. I have already been in fights where my Fire Bolt and my Ray of Frost had no effect.

However, that still did not keep me from taking Fireball.
 
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