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D&D 5E Free Upcasting By Tier: A House-Rule


The High Aldwin
NEW IDEA: based on some of the feedback, here's a new thought for the house-rule.

You can spend multiple spell slots to upcast lower level spells.

Ex. When you cast magic missile (1st-level), you spend a second 1st-level slot to cast the spell at 2nd-level.

This would do avg. damage 14 instead of 10.5 twice, but without having to use a 2nd-level slot.

Ex. You cast invisibility (2nd-level), and spend a 1st-level slot to increase it to 3rd-level.

This would allow you to select a second target, but at the cost of losing a 1st-level spell.

This way, you can use the slots to improve spells, increasing power and action economy, but at the cost of fewer over all spells.

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Rather than free upcasting, I would allow spellcasters to convert lower-level spell slots to spell points and use the spell points to recover higher-level spell slots, in the same way and at the same cost that sorcerers can already convert spell slots to sorcery points and vice-versa.

So, at 11th level, spellcasters can convert 1st-level spell slots to spell points and use the spell points to regain 2nd-level spell slots.

At 17th level, spellcasters can convert 1st- and 2nd-level spell slots to spell points and use the spell points to regain 3rd-level spell slots.
i believe that that solution already is in DMG,

spell point variant.


(he, him)
Apologies for the slightly delayed responses. I have apparently had this open (but unsubmitted) in a browser tab all night. (Apart from the last bit, obviously)
Right, which is the trade-off I was talking about: better saves vs. hit point bloat.
I never said it wasn't a tradeoff. But you were implying it was an approximately even trade, when in fact it is strongly slanted in favour of the 5e Wizard.

You're dodging the narrow beam, instead of resisting the magic after being hit.
Well obviously. But in prior editions it was the latter (TBF in 3.P its was technically both, since there was a ranged touch attack as well as the save, but the RTA was usually pretty trivial - although that did not prevent me rolling a natural 1 the first two times I cast disintegrate with my current Shattered Star character).

I don't think I would do that. An 11th level wizard with a 14 Con (pretty normal from my experience, and the poll we had a few weeks ago about Con bears that out) has 68 HP if they aren't rolling. That means to die, the wizard has to both fail the save, and the caster has to roll 68 or more on 20d6, which is only about a 63% chance. If the wizard has more than a 20% chance to succeed on the save (so a +1 against a DC 17), then they have better survival odds than the 50/50 coinflip save.

Now, granted, this is only for a wizard at full hitpoints; an injured wizard will definitely want the coinflip odds.
According to the SRD and my PHB, it does 10d6+40 (average 75), not 20d6.

I think it might be you who is not understanding me; when I say it is a power boost I am just saying literally that - no value judgements, no comments that it is big (let alone too big). Just that it is what it literally is. Options are power, and this provides an extra option - obviously, you will only use it when it is actually useful.

Just like the disintegrate spell we have been talking about is only useful if you want to disintegrate something or someone (to be fair, a fairly common want). But gaining that spell when you did not have it before is still a power boost.


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