Level Up (A5E) Changes in 5E to A5E spells


No rule is inviolate
I saw this thread awhile back and no followup about spells that were changed. So, I compared, dividing the spell changes into:

Major (overhaul and/or major change in gameplay). Included a summary of the changes, not the entire spell.
Minor (1-2 changes, largely the same spell, mostly "cast at higher level" spells). Included summary of changes.
No Changes

If you see any errors or have suggestions, feel free to offer up.

To the designers, I noticed a couple incongruities and/or had a couple questions.

(1) Raise Dead/Resurrection. One uses A5E rules on penalties while recovering, the other 5E rules (the -4 penalty).
(2) Prismatic Spray/Prismatic Wall. One uses A5E changes to petrification (reducing to 2 saves), the other 5E rules (3 saves).
(3) Polymorph. My players have a tactic of polymorphing nasty enemies like giants into snails, then flying them into the air and dropping them from great heights. At 0hp, polymorph says they go unconscious. Does this mean they do not need to make a "massive damage/instant death" save?

EDIT: moved Irresistible Dance (Otto's) to major changes.


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No rule is inviolate
Next, my take on page 1 of the "Major" overhauls as I saw them:

Animate Objects (5). Nerfed a bit but still a solid spell.

Banishment (4). Nerfed quite a bit; was an ultimate "save or lose" spell that became much more powerful when magic resistance % was removed, so I can't complain. You've got a pretty solid chance to remove any ultra-powerful outsider with a 4th level spell from the game.

Barkskin (2). Buffed quite a bit by removing Concentration. Shapeshifting druids already had it fairly good...

Ceremony (1, XGE). Morphed. I've seen it used for roleplay purposes, gives it a bit more utility.

Comprehend Languages (1). Big nerf. It encourages skill use, but it was nice being a caster and having a reason to take this spell because it always was going to help the group. Now, who knows.

Confusion (4). Buffed by removing any chance of acting normally. It was already a good spell because it could disable masses of foes.

Conjure Stuff. All these took hints from XGE summons. It's much cleaner for gameplay, though a little less fun because you're never going to randomly draw something crazy fun that way. Except Animals. That got left alone.

Counterspell (3). Huge nerf. It was already one of my least favorite spells given dispel magic used to fill this role. Gives solo caster bosses a much better chance of being a challenge.

Create Food and Water (3). Nerfed to be less auto-win for survival challenges. A5E wants to focus on more than combat. This helps.

Dispel Evil and Good (5). Morphed. Not sure there's much "dispelling" going on anymore, but it's better than before.

Flesh to Stone (6). Buffed. It needed it. A 6th level spell should be awesome. Still much better spells to take.

Forcecage (7). Big nerf. This used to be a powerful shutdown spell, as 7th level spells should be. Now, save and nothing happens.

Love this @toucanbuzz , but I have a question on one of your rankings. (Otto's) Irresistible Dance is marked as a minor change and you talk about the fact you can cast it at higher level to affect more creatures. However you don't mention that the spell now has a save negates when cast in addition to the save per round as opposed to the original spell which only allows saves on subsequent rounds. That seems more like a major change to me. Just curious on the why.


No rule is inviolate
(Otto's) Irresistible Dance...now has a save negates when cast in addition to the save per round as opposed to the original spell which only allows saves on subsequent rounds. That seems more like a major change to me. Just curious on the why.
Yuck, missed that. That's a terrible change. I thought maybe I was misreading, but nope. I can't think of one player who would waste a 6th level slot in my groups on it.


No rule is inviolate
Friends (c). Boost. It's actually really useful now. If you have roleplaying going on.

Giant Insect (4). Same quality of spell, still not sure anyone really uses it.

Goodberry (1). Nerf, and the spell needed it imo as it kills the "survival/exploration" aspect of the game too easily for 1st level.

Irresistible Dance (Otto’s) (6). Nerf, and bad. As noted, why would anyone use a 6th level slot on this? Swing and a rare whiff. Looking at phantasmal killer and shaking my head why they removed the "at least it does something even on a save for this high level of a single-target slot."

Jump (1). Boost, especially for lower STR characters. You can do a lot with a 15' vertical.

Knock (2). Big nerf. Same comment as Comprehend Languages. Not a fan.

Meteor Swarm (9). Big nerf. Tremendous drop in damage (-12d6 per meteor).

Phantasmal Killer (4). Boost. A much-needed improvement to at least have the spell do something.

Power Word, Kill (9). Boost. Another "at least it does something..." fix.

Power Word, Stun (7). Boost, just like its buddy PWK.

Remove Curse (3). Nerfed. But in a really inventive way so lower-level casters can't remove higher level curses.

Rope Trick (2). Nerfed big. But, it was already a pretty powerful spell with the long rest mechanic.

Slow (3). Boost. Slow was already an amazing spell, so not sure it needed an "at least it does something" boost.

Spirit Guardians (3). Pros and cons balance out with redesign. It's still a great spell.

Tiny Hut (Leomund’s) (3). Nerf, and much needed. Went back to its original intent and design, adopting what many on the forums saw as a highly abusive spell for a simple 3rd level slot.

Wall of Force (5). Huge nerf but not a horrible one given the impact this spell had on "divide and conquer" enemy troops.

Wall of Stone (5). Nerf just like wall of force.

Zone of Truth (2). Boost. Lying hurts man.

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