D&D 5E Feedback on five homebrew spells?

Quickleaf

Legend
I'm running an Egyptian-themed campaign with two clerics where there are "mysteries" they can be initiated into associated with their respective gods. These include access to new feats, equipment, prestige classes (based on this UA), and "secret" spells.

Am I designing these 5 spells effectively? And would you say they're appropriately leveled? Thanks much!

Overview:
  • Osiris' Hallowed Ground (4th) – investigative spell more specific than speak with dead but doesn't need a body; converted from Scott Bennett's Old Empires document
  • Ptah's Disapparition (4th) – reactive 20 foot teleport to being targeted or in area of harmful effect
  • Reunion (5th) – bring back ghost of an ally who died within 10 days (but there is no body) but only for up to 10 days from moment of death; converted from GURPS Egypt
  • Create Shabti (6th) – create a statuette that become a CR 8 construct bound to you when you travel with it to the Outer Planes
  • Sanctify Spirit Host (6th) – enchant mummified corpse such that if anyone disturbs/desecrates its tomb, it animates as a modified mummy; converted from AD&D Powers & Pantheons

The Osiris Mysteries​

5th level; Requires initiation at Hamunaptra or other Osirian cult center

You may take the "Divine Arbitrator" prestige class.

If you died and were resurrected… you may take the "Order of the Risen Scepter" prestige class.

If you are undead… as a feat, you may select Turning Defiance (+1 Wisdom, and you and any undead allies within 30 feet have advantage on saves against Turn Undead).

5th level = cooperative Turn Undead (Help another priest within 30 feet, bypassing Turn Resistance/Turning Defiance, or increasing range to 60 feet, or duration to 10 minutes)

7th level = learn Osiris’ hallowed ground (4th level spell for sleuthing & identifying bodies; see Scott Bennet’s Old Empires)

9th level = learn reunion (5th level spell bringing back recently dead as free-willed ghost; see GURPS Egypt) & sanctify spirit host?

11th level = learn sanctify spirit host? (6th? level spell imbuing corpse to become empowered mummy upon trigger; see Powers & Pantheons), and you can create a mummy with create undead

The Ptah Mysteries​

5th level; Requires initiation at Djeby, Djakaptah, or other cult center of Ptah

As a feat, you may select Magic Attunement (you gain an additional attunement slot and choice of an uncommon magic item from the Temple of Ptah).

If you are a dwarf or cleric of the Forge domain… you may take the "Forge Master" (?) prestige class.

5th level = You can use Channel Divinity to bond with a vehicle (e.g. barque, wagon, skyship, spelljammer) for up to 8 hours (or until you take a short or long rest), and during this time any buffing spells you cast extend to the entire vehicle and its crew.

7th level = learn Ptah’s disapparition (4th level spell, as a reaction to being targeted by a harmful effect, teleport 20 feet to an unoccupied space you can see, and if it was an attack it has disadvantage, whereas if it required a saving throw do so with advantage)

9th level = Add teleportation circle as a cleric spell for you.

11th level = learn create shabti (6th level spell creating a statuette that turns into a special golem when you travel to underworld/afterlife planes) & when you cast word of recall you can transport a total number of creatures equal to your level

Osirian Secret Spells​

Osiris’ Hallowed Ground

4th-level Divination (ritual, restricted)
Casting Time: 1 minute
Range: Self
Components: V, S
Duration: Instantaneous

You focus on a place you can see extending in a 60-foot cube from you, causing shadowy forms to act out a death scene in silent pantomime. Choose whether the reenacted death scene is of the most recent death(s) in the area or of the most violent death(s) in the area. The shadowy forms have no discernible features beyond a vague outline, as only the person who died and the murder weapon (if any) are presented in detail.

Additionally, you witness shadowy forms revealing one fact of your choice about one of the following subjects as it relates to the area:

  • typical inhabitants and creatures
  • frequency with which death occurred at the site over the last year
  • presence of trapped souls or lingering spirits

By feeling psychic echoes in a place you can see no larger than a 60-foot cube, you gain vague visions indicating who has died in the place (if you’re unfamiliar with the person you don’t learn their name, just gaining a general description), how long ago they died, and what killed them (e.g. monster, humanoid type, disease, old age, arrow).

Reunion

5th-level Necromancy (restricted)
Casting Time: 1 hour
Range: Touch
Components: V, S, M (jewelry, books, rare incense, perfumes, foods worthy of a feast, and other items favored by the deceased while alive worth at least 500 gp which the spell consumes)
Duration: Special

You call forth the ghost of a creature humanoid familiar to you in life by touching the exact spot it died or the thing that killed it. The creature must have died no longer than 10 days ago The spell only functions within 10 days of the humanoid's death or the anniversary of the humanoid's death, and its soul must both be willing and at liberty to respond to your call. Upon answering your call, the ghost is free to act as it will for up to 10 days after the day of its original death (or the anniversary of its death), whereupon it must move on to what awaits it in the afterlife. A creature humanoid may only be the target of reunion once.

Sanctify Spirit Host

5th-level 6th Necromancy (restricted)
Casting Time: 1 hour
Range: Touch
Components: V, S
Duration: Until dispelled

Performing this spell as part of burial rites of a mummified humanoid corpse, you sanctify the remains such that if they are ever disturbed or its tomb despoiled, the entombed corpse animates as a mummy. Osiris sends the spirit of a divine minion to animate the mummy, which is Lawful Neutral, is not vulnerable to fire damage, nor is it harmed by holy water (except that created by followers of Set), cannot be turned or commanded (save by followers of Osiris), and its attack does not inflict mummy rot. The mummy animates only so long as necessary to defend the sanctity of its entombment. Each time the tomb is despoiled, the mummy awakens in this manner until either it is destroyed or the spell is dispelled. Dispelling does not destroy the mummy if it is currently active.

Ptah Secret Spells​

Create Shabti

7th-level 6th Transmutation (restricted)
Casting Time: 12 hours
Range: Touch
Components: V, S, M (statuette crafted with your own hands, and powdered diamond dust worth 5,000 gp sprinkled over the statuette and consumed by the spell)
Duration: Instantaneous

You imbue a statuette with latent animative powers that only becomes manifest when you travel to the Outer Planes with the statuette, whereupon it transforms into a shabti (CR 8 construct from Tome of Beasts) which obeys your commands is an ally to you, acting to protect you as its utmost priority. You may only create one shabti at a time. When you leave the Outer Planes, the shabti vanishes and returns to being a statuette.

The statuette has AC 24, 10 hit points, and resistance to all damage. If the statuette is destroyed, it cannot turn into the shabti. If the shabti is destroyed, it does not return to statuette form upon leaving the Outer Planes.


Ptah’s Disapparition

4th-level Conjuration (restricted)
Casting Time: Reaction (when you fail a saving throw or are hit by an attack)
Range: Self
Components: V, S
Duration: Instantaneous

You teleport up to 20 feet to an unoccupied space you can see, and the triggering attack or saving throw is rerolled with disadvantage.

As a reaction to being targeted by a harmful effect or being in the area of a harmful effect, you can teleport up to 20 feet to an unoccupied space you can see. If the effect was an attack it has disadvantage, whereas if it required a saving throw, you roll the save with advantage.
 
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Stalker0

Legend
My general thought is there is some good and mechanics here, just need some tweaks.

hallowed ground: could be 3rd maybe even second. It’s not a ritual and the info it gives is not usually that campaign useful (the fact that 60 men died here to arrows is cool flavor but doesn’t alter the campaign). Yeah I’m actually leaning more 2nd level.

Reunion is very cool, and for a game like mine where I don’t allow raise dead, I might allow this one. 5th is likely appropriate, on the one hand raise dead is permanent. On the other have a ghost could be very useful.

Sanctify spirit host, ah another very nice flavor. I think 5th is max for this, as if’s similar to guards and wards. This spell has a weaker effect than guards but is permanent out of the gate, so seems reasonable to be a comparable power level.

shabti - I think this is good andworthy of a 6th level spell. I like the flavor restriction. The fact that It’s immune from non magical damage is the real draw here, there are some fights where the shabti just wins, which I think is appropriate for 6th level.

disapparation - probably the most generally useful adventuring spell...a combination misty step plus damage avoidance, feels right for 4th. I would make it 30ft teleport just to match it to misty step.
 

Steampunkette

Shaper of Worlds
Supporter
I'm largely with Stalker, but would like to add a couple of things:

1) Hallowed Grounds. Go ahead and do the whole "Dramatic Recreation" effect. Shadowy forms of the people involved in the death act out what happened in pantomime as the person who died is presented in detail. No sound, just imagery.

2) Instead of "Within 10 days of death" make Reunion "10 days of the -anniversary- of their death". So someone could use the spell to bring back a ghost decades later on the anniversary of their passing as a nice narrative element.
 


Quickleaf

Legend
Thanks! Really appreciate your feedback.

hallowed ground: could be 3rd maybe even second. It’s not a ritual and the info it gives is not usually that campaign useful (the fact that 60 men died here to arrows is cool flavor but doesn’t alter the campaign). Yeah I’m actually leaning more 2nd level.
1) Hallowed Grounds. Go ahead and do the whole "Dramatic Recreation" effect. Shadowy forms of the people involved in the death act out what happened in pantomime as the person who died is presented in detail. No sound, just imagery.
I'm curious what you think I could do to make Hallowed Grounds land squarely as a 4th level spell?

My thinking was that it can be used to (a) get a feel for a trap's effect, (b) determine what sort of bodies aren't immediately obvious / underground for necromantic purposes, and (c) to function like a very focused / limited set of questions evocative of speak with dead (3rd), but not requiring a corpse. That's what lead to me penning it as one level higher than speak with dead. But I see your point that's it's not quite landing there.

Reunion is very cool, and for a game like mine where I don’t allow raise dead, I might allow this one. 5th is likely appropriate, on the one hand raise dead is permanent. On the other have a ghost could be very useful.
2) Instead of "Within 10 days of death" make Reunion "10 days of the -anniversary- of their death". So someone could use the spell to bring back a ghost decades later on the anniversary of their passing as a nice narrative element.
Ooo, nice, that's a beautiful addition Steampunkette. Great idea. Thanks!

Sanctify spirit host, ah another very nice flavor. I think 5th is max for this, as if’s similar to guards and wards. This spell has a weaker effect than guards but is permanent out of the gate, so seems reasonable to be a comparable power level.
Yeah, there are some great spells out there.

How are you comparing Sanctify Spirit Host to guards and wards? I ask because guards and wards doesn't create enemies or directly damage effects, so I hadn't initially thought to use it as the point of comparison.

shabti - I think this is good andworthy of a 6th level spell. I like the flavor restriction. The fact that It’s immune from non magical damage is the real draw here, there are some fights where the shabti just wins, which I think is appropriate for 6th level.
ECMO3 said:
I think create Shabti should be 7th or 8th level considering the other 6th-level summoning spells.

So my point of comparison was the 6th level planar ally spell, the 6th level summon fiend spell, and the 6th level conjure fey spell. I definitely agree there needs to be some limits on the Shabti construct, and probably more precise language in the spell. Let me run through my comparison thoughts quickly for each of those spells...

Planar Ally can summon a variety of creatures (+), but the creature is free willed (-). It's 10 minutes to cast and no costly material component (+), but securing the creature's service for a day could cost 10,000 gp if it's interested in gold (-). And the creature can be any CR (+), but there's effectively an XP cost, as the creature gains an equal share of the party's XP (-).

Summon fiend summons a fiendish spirit that's weaker than CR 8 (-), but scales with your level (+). It can be cast quickly as an action with just a 600 gp material component (+), but only lasts for an hour and requires concentration (-). Language is that it is an "ally", but stops short of calling it "friendly" like conjure fey. It also acts immediately after your turn, rather than independently.

Conjure fey summons a CR 6 fey (or fey in beast's clothing) which is weaker than CR 8 (-), but is "friendly" towards your party and obeys all verbal commands you give it (+). It can be cast quickly as an action with no costly material component (+), but only lasts for an hour and requires concentration, and it turns hostile if you lose control (-)....

In comparison, Create Shabti creates a loyal servant (+), but it can only create one specific type of creature (-). That creature is a CR 8 construct (+), but the construct can only manifest in the Outer Planes (-). It's 12 hours to cast with an upfront material cost of 5,000 gp (-), but with an indefinite period of service (+).
.

disapparation - probably the most generally useful adventuring spell...a combination misty step plus damage avoidance, feels right for 4th. I would make it 30ft teleport just to match it to misty step.
Yeah, that one was tricky to evaluate. My gut feel also was 4th level. While I did have misty step in the back of my mind, I was actually imagining the character being in one of the four central squares of a fireball (20-foot radius) vs. in one of the central squares of a cone of cold (60-foot radius); the idea being that they could teleport completely clear of a fireball but not clear of the cone of cold. The other idea I had was of teleporting to get clear of a trap's area of effect.
 
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J-H

Hero
My suggestions:

Osiris' Hallowed Ground
To power this up and make it worthwhile: The visions include showing the killing blow being struck if it was a deliberate killing, and contain enough detail to be used for Scrying.
Now it's a tool for solving murders and tracking down unknown attackers...or their distinctive weapons. "Long ago, someone bearing the Sword of Certain Slaying killed a god. The sword is lost...but now you can scry for it."

Reunion
What if something was an intelligent creature but had no material possessions? This seems like a plot spell. Ghosts are pretty weak as minions, and you may want to re-work a new ghost template to go with this.

Sanctify Spirit Host
Nice guard. Not sure a PC would use it, but I like it. It's at about the right level given all the conditions on it. Can the mummy be dispelled into a corpse, or would the dispel have to be cast when the mummy is inactive (since the action of the spell is imbuing the body with the spirit)? How does it interact with an anti-magic field?

Shabti
I'd rather have this than Simulacrum or Mord's Sword. It gets a Telekinesis, two melee attacks, and two giant snake attacks a round, doesn't require Concentration, and does not go away. I'd rate this as 7th or 8th level and would include the spell slot being "used" unless you decide to de-animate the Shabti.

Disapparition
Upgraded Misty Step. 3rd level seems a bit low, so 4th level is about right. Nice panic button spell against a big attack.
 

NotAYakk

Legend
Hallowed Ground:
Description is very vague in how vague it is.

Also, over what duration? A given patch of land can have millions of deaths, from ants to dinosaurs to people.

Reunion:
What are the game statistics of the ghost?

Sanctify Spirit Host:
Can you spell hampster claymores?

Shabti:
I might remove "obeys your commands" because I'm an naughty word. How about
"Acts to protect you, and cannot physically hinder you."

Also "it can only create one specific type of creature" is a weak (-).

And "cast it days before" is a huge plus.

It is a class feature disguised as a spell. Compare it with Summon Greater Steed, a top-tier level 4 spell .... that summons a CR 2 creature.


Disapparition:
Casting Time: Reaction (when you fail a saving throw or are hit by an attack)

You teleport up to 20 feet to an unoccupied area you can see, and the triggering attack or saving throw is rerolled with disadvantage.

I made it when hit/fail a save. I made it at disadvantage for both, because otherwise this becomes an indomidable fighter class feature at the cost of a mere 4th level spell.

So you get a reroll against the save, but the reroll is at disadvantage. If you use it on an attack, the attack is also at disadvantage (it works better against attacks).
 

Quickleaf

Legend
Thanks for your comments. Very helpful!

Osiris' Hallowed Ground
To power this up and make it worthwhile: The visions include showing the killing blow being struck if it was a deliberate killing, and contain enough detail to be used for Scrying.
Now it's a tool for solving murders and tracking down unknown attackers...or their distinctive weapons. "Long ago, someone bearing the Sword of Certain Slaying killed a god. The sword is lost...but now you can scry for it."
Hallowed Ground:
Description is very vague in how vague it is.

Also, over what duration? A given patch of land can have millions of deaths, from ants to dinosaurs to people.
I like the idea that faces are blanked out and shadowy/silhouetted, so only the features of the victim are clear – to preserve the potential for a mystery. But I also like your idea @J-H about getting enough info to cast a scrying. Is it possible to scry on someone without their name but a vague non-facially-detailed description?

Yep, evocatively vague right now @NotAYakk! I restricted it to a 60x60 foot cube, for whatever that's worth as a guiding principle. As far as how far back in time it goes... AFAIK, there aren't any spells to really compare it to in 5e... no spells refer to a gradated X number of days or years. My temptation would be to go back to either (a) the most recent death or (b) the most violent death(s), irrespective of any fixed number of days/years.

Reunion
What if something was an intelligent creature but had no material possessions? This seems like a plot spell. Ghosts are pretty weak as minions, and you may want to re-work a new ghost template to go with this.
Reunion:
What are the game statistics of the ghost?
This would be a ghost from the MM, so I probably should clarify the creature must have been a humanoid.

The idea being that the ghost's Possession ability somewhat acts as a scaling mechanic when the party encounters humanoid enemies, and can be maximized with hex (Charisma) or the few rare effects in the game that inhibit saving throws. So when the party faces a warlord or archmage, their ghost companion miiight temporarily possess that humanoid foe.

Sanctify Spirit Host
Nice guard. Not sure a PC would use it, but I like it. It's at about the right level given all the conditions on it. Can the mummy be dispelled into a corpse, or would the dispel have to be cast when the mummy is inactive (since the action of the spell is imbuing the body with the spirit)? How does it interact with an anti-magic field?
Sanctify Spirit Host:
Can you spell hampster claymores?
@NotAYakk I'm afraid I'm unfamiliar with that phrase. Could you elaborate?

The idea with Sanctify Spirit Host is that the spell could be dispelled (via dispel magic), but once the mummy becomes active, then dispelling the spell won't have any effect on it right now. However, the idea is that a corpse enchanted with Sanctify Spirit Host could be awakened as a mummy potentially multiple times across the years, so if you dispel magic on it while it's active, you still need to deal with the mummy now, but it's not going to reactivate if you didn't kill it and came back to the tomb next week.

Shabti
I'd rather have this than Simulacrum or Mord's Sword. It gets a Telekinesis, two melee attacks, and two giant snake attacks a round, doesn't require Concentration, and does not go away. I'd rate this as 7th or 8th level and would include the spell slot being "used" unless you decide to de-animate the Shabti.
Shabti:
I might remove "obeys your commands" because I'm an naughty word. How about
"Acts to protect you, and cannot physically hinder you."

Also "it can only create one specific type of creature" is a weak (-).

And "cast it days before" is a huge plus.

It is a class feature disguised as a spell. Compare it with Summon Greater Steed, a top-tier level 4 spell .... that summons a CR 2 creature.
@J-H Yep, it's very good. Is there an existing 5e spell with language to the effect of "your spell slot is used permanently until the spell's effect ends" or somesuch?

Btw just to clarify its Telekinesis is less than and not the same as the spell telekinesis, just so there's no confusion. Not that it's still not very strong.

I definitely see what you mean about it being really strong. One way to temper it that I've been considering is borrowing a line from the create magen spell (in Rime of the Frostmaiden): "When the magen appears, your hit point maximum decreases by an amount equal to the magen's challenge rating (minimum reduction of 1). Only a wish spell can undo this reduction to your hit point maximum."

@NotAYakk I feel like having it "permanently" occupy a spell slot only would move it further into Class Feature Disguised As Spell territory. Would you agree? I'd prefer to avoid that territory. And I'm curious if my proposal to borrow that line from create magen – if coupled with a change in the language away from "obeys your commands" – suitably moves it from that territory for you? Or are there further steps I should take to get it to about a 7th level spell?

Disapparition
Upgraded Misty Step. 3rd level seems a bit low, so 4th level is about right. Nice panic button spell against a big attack.
Disapparition:
Casting Time: Reaction (when you fail a saving throw or are hit by an attack)

You teleport up to 20 feet to an unoccupied area you can see, and the triggering attack or saving throw is rerolled with disadvantage.

I made it when hit/fail a save. I made it at disadvantage for both, because otherwise this becomes an indomidable fighter class feature at the cost of a mere 4th level spell.

So you get a reroll against the save, but the reroll is at disadvantage. If you use it on an attack, the attack is also at disadvantage (it works better against attacks).
Excellent catch @NotAYakk – you're 100% right. I'll revise it as you've suggested. Thanks!
 

NotAYakk

Legend
You make a tomb of a Hamster and cast Sanctify Spirit Host. Design the tomb to have a fragile top, so if you step on it you despoils and disturbs the tomb.

Mummy landmines.

...

Look at create homoculus. Every HP it has costs you a HP.

I mean, look at True Polymorph. It makes a CR 9 creature and it is loyal for an hour, after which is is free willed. You make a CR 8 creature that lasts forever. Your spell is stronger than a decent use of a level 9 spell.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
@NotAYakk It probably says something about me that I adore your idea. :)

Yeah, for "public consumption" I edited out the mummy template that I use for this campaign, but just like I'm doing with the Reunion spell, I probably should write in "humanoid corpse" instead of just "corpse."

Look at create homoculus. Every HP it has costs you a HP.

I mean, look at True Polymorph. It makes a CR 9 creature and it is loyal for an hour, after which is is free willed. You make a CR 8 creature that lasts forever. Your spell is stronger than a decent use of a level 9 spell.
My intent is that the statuette only manifests in the Outer Planes, and on returning to the Material Plane (or wherever that's not the Outer Planes) it reverts to a statuette. Probably should clarify that.

Are you thinking I am over-valuing the conditional nature of the construct's presence?
 


aco175

Legend
To boost the hallowed ground spell to 4th level you can add some benefits to know about the monsters in the area. I can see the spell being cast in areas like a dungeon or cave while exploring and investigating. You can learn about a certain monster and which way it comes from. Maybe there is a special ability it has like poison breath and you can see it use the breath on the dead.

This can translate with advantage on initiative at least and even something such as +1d6 damage to that monster.

I can also see this spell being up to a lot of interpretation by the DM. He is the one that needs to feed the players with game information and I can see it being a bit of gotcha if used that way.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
To boost the hallowed ground spell to 4th level you can add some benefits to know about the monsters in the area. I can see the spell being cast in areas like a dungeon or cave while exploring and investigating. You can learn about a certain monster and which way it comes from. Maybe there is a special ability it has like poison breath and you can see it use the breath on the dead.

This can translate with advantage on initiative at least and even something such as +1d6 damage to that monster.

I can also see this spell being up to a lot of interpretation by the DM. He is the one that needs to feed the players with game information and I can see it being a bit of gotcha if used that way.
Thanks for the feedback!

Here's my current revision of the Osiris' Hallowed Ground spell...

Osiris’ Hallowed Ground​

4th-level Divination (restricted)
Casting Time: 1 minute
Range: Self
Components: V, S
Duration: Instantaneous

You focus on a place you can see no larger than a 60-foot cube, causing shadowy forms to act out a death scene in silent pantomime. Choose whether the reenacted death scene is of the most recent death(s) in the area or of the most violent death(s) in the area. The shadowy forms have no discernible features beyond a vague outline, as only the person who died and the murder weapon (if any) are presented in detail.
While I'd prefer to lean away from numerical advantages with this particular spell – which don't feel in keeping with the "spirit" of the spell's idea, at least for me – what about emulating a toned-down version of Commune with Nature (5th)? In particular, I'm looking at the part that says...

You instantly gain knowledge of up to three facts of your choice about any of the following subjects as they relate to the area:
  • terrain and bodies of water
  • prevalent plants, minerals, animals, or peoples
  • powerful celestials, fey, fiends, elementals, or undead
  • influence from other planes of existence
  • buildings

Maybe something like... "You witness shadowy forms revealing one fact of your choice about one of the following subjects as it relates to the area:
  • typical inhabitants and creatures
  • frequency with which death occurred at the site over the last year
  • presence of trapped souls or lingering spirits"
 

Stalker0

Legend
Thanks for the feedback!

Here's my current revision of the Osiris' Hallowed Ground spell...

While I'd prefer to lean away from numerical advantages with this particular spell – which don't feel in keeping with the "spirit" of the spell's idea, at least for me – what about emulating a toned-down version of Commune with Nature (5th)? In particular, I'm looking at the part that says...



Maybe something like... "You witness shadowy forms revealing one fact of your choice about one of the following subjects as it relates to the area:
  • typical inhabitants and creatures
  • frequency with which death occurred at the site over the last year
  • presence of trapped souls or lingering spirits"
Yeah I still think you need to add something, your just giving too little info for it to be 4th level. At this point I feel like I could just cast a divination and get a lot of this info.
 


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