• The VOIDRUNNER'S CODEX is coming! Explore new worlds, fight oppressive empires, fend off fearsome aliens, and wield deadly psionics with this comprehensive boxed set expansion for 5E and A5E!

D&D (2024) Make SPELL SCHOOLS Thematic (and Useful)


Make SPELL SCHOOLS Thematic (and Useful)

This thread tweaks the traditional spell schools to organize them more thematically. When each school has a clear theme, the schools can help players find the relevant spells, and build different character concepts. It is like painting a canvas with tubes of different colored paints.

Each school has its own spell list. In addition, some schools subdivide into "subschools". For example, the Fireball spell belongs to the "Fire" subschool in the "Evocation" school.

The "magic of magic", such as the spells Detect Magic and Dispel Magic, forms its own school that any caster can access. It is the Universal school regarding the "Dweomer", namely the aura of magic, and the "Weave", the ambient magic inherent in all things that exist. Ultimately, all schools can cause reality to come into being, by various means, whether by Psionic mind over magic or Divine miracle, or so on. Hence the Wish spell too locates in the Universal school.

Among the schools, Abjuration is odd. Unlike the other schools, Abjuration describes a purpose, rather than a means. It is any kind of magic that is used for protection: for defense, warding, shielding, healing, restoration, and resurrection. Abjuration is useful, but works better as a spell descriptor tag than a school. For example, Cure Wounds is a Transmutation school spell that transmutes the body for the purpose of Abjuration. Most schools have spells that can be used for protective purposes.

Oppositely, Necromancy too is odd, a descriptor that can apply to various schools. Most of its spells come from the Conjuration school. But it is distinctive enough to form its own list. Necromancy spells explore the dreadful aspects of magic. They necromance deathliness and conjure deals with forbidden planar creatures, such as Undead, Fiend, and Aberration. The necromancies overlap the darksides of other schools too, such as to enchant fear or insanity, to evoke darkness, to illude ghostly manifestations, or to transmute disease or necrosis.

Seven spell schools remain. Each of these seven schools is salient and flavorful. These schools are also comprehensive and can organize EVERY official spell in D&D. Most spells clearly belong to a specific school and subschool. A few spells are complex that have variagated moving parts packaging together, but even these tend to have a main theme that correlates a particular school.


Each spell school is a collection of tropes relating to a theme.

= to conjure across the planes of the multiverse

Conjuration is planar magic that manifests effects from other levels of existence, such as becoming pure thought within the Astral Plane.
The Planeshift spell that transfigures into other levels of being is also a Conjuration planar magic, as are spells that can Contact Other Plane.

Most spells that summon creatures, such as Find Familiar and Conjure Celestial, belong to the Conjuration school. The spell grants these otherworldly immaterial beings an avatar to manifest physically within the Material Plane, or similarly an other kind of avatar when in any other plane. Depending on the spell, the beings typically return to their planar home if the avatar is destroyed.

However note. The summoning of Elemental creatures from the Elemental Planes relates instead to the Evocation school and its Elemental magic.

= to dunomance force = to telekinese force

Dunomancy spells manipulate the stuff of force. The dunomancer, also known as the telekinetic, can wield force telekinetically to move an object, such as Fly and Telekinesis, or to deal Force damage, such as Magic Missile. Force damage is like extreme gravity but it can be concentrated in a small area. A dunomancer can also shape force into quasi-solid forcefields to form force constructs, like Unseen Servant and Wall of Force.

Like the force of gravity, force is ethereal, namely physical but immaterial. When understood as a "fifth element", also known as quintessence, a stuff that something can be made out of, force is called "ether". The Ethereal Plane is the Fifth Elemental Plane. Everything of this plane is made out of forces. Ultimately even the Four Elements of matter are made out of immaterial force (nuclear forces and electromagnetic force). Thus the force of the Disintegrate spell can undo the forces that hold matter together.

= to divinate across spacetime

Divination spells produce effects by means of space and time. The technical term to divinate disambiguates from an other technical term, namely the Divine power source for magic relating to the Astral Plane.

The Divination school comprises two subschools: Scry and Teleportation.

Scry sees across spacetime. The term scry derives from "dis-" and "cry", in the sense of a calling out a description while physically apart from it. A scry makes the unknown known.

Teleportation jumps thru spacetime, and even manipulates it to form demiplanes and distortions of time. While ones mind is elsewhere in space or time, one can pull ones body there, thereby teleporting spatially or temporally without distance between. Demiplanes are distortions of space, such as a box that is bigger inside than outside. Time distortions, such as Haste and Time Stop, are aspects of Teleportation as they manipulate the fabric of spacetime.

Divination subschools
• Scry (clairvoyance, prescience, luck, fate)
• Teleportation (a relocating to elsewhere in space or time, distorting spacetime)

= to enchant the mind

Enchantment spells play with a mind. The enchanter, also known as the telepath, can help or harm a mind. Enchantments can charm, frighten, delude, or dominate, but can also communicate telepathically, intimately discern the deepest needs, boost memory, and heal and empower a mind. One can even awaken a new consciousness. Phantasm spells cause experiences that only exist in the mind of a target, resembling a hallucination or a dream.

= to evoke the elements

Evocation spells produce effects by means of the Four Elements of matter: Earth, Water, Air, and Fire. Each element is a physical state of matter − respectively, solid, liquid, gas, and plasma. Each Element is also a presence.

To "evoke" means to "call" something "out", or bring it forth, including magically. The technical jargon specifies to evoke specific properties that are inherent within each of the Elements. An Element has a mentality. An Elemental creature is a manifestation of it. The Elements behave the way they do because they want to behave that way. Water likes to flow down. Fire likes to leap up. To evoke an Element is a personal affinity with that Element.

Each Element is a subschool. There is also a Primordial subschool where all four elements are together in an unstable flux.

Evocation subschools
• Air (lightning-thunder damages, wind, breath, vacuum, detonation, sound)
• Earth (weapon damages, rock, soil, mud, metal, crystal)
• Fire (fire and radiant damage, light and darkness, sun, stars)
• Water (cold damage, ice, cloud, rain, drowning, fluidity)
• Primordial (acid damage, blendings of various elemental energies)

= to illude reality

The true reality is the reality that a mind experiences. Illusion spells blur the boundary between subjective perception and objective fact.

The word to "illude" means to cause an illusion, and derives from the concept of being "playful" (ludic) "at" (in). An Illusion plays with reality itself, whether to create a fun experience or a tricky one. A rewarding reality for allies or a punishing reality for hostiles.

Illusions alter objective reality in some way, creating a quasi-real object, where many minds can encounter the phenomenon. Some Illusion spells are immaterial holograms that ones hand can strangely pass thru. Others manifest a physical force, resembling a force construct, but more feeling more psychologically compelling.

= to transmute lifeforms

Transmutation attunes and shapes the myriad forms of life. Where Evocation evokes the inorganic matter of the elements, Transmutation transmutes the organic matter of life, including animals and plants, and the materials from them, like horn and leather, and wood and linen. Shapeshifting is Transmutation.

Transmutations include the subschools of Animal, Plant, and Healing. Animal extends from Beast to any living creature, especially Humanoid, while emphasizing the bodily aspects. Plant includes plantlike forms such as fungus and simpler forms of life such as Ooze. Plant also involves foods, and the crafting of plant products of wood, fabrics of linen or cotton, paper, resins, and crafting generally. Healing opens a safe space for life itself, growing, healing and restoring, while gently perfusing the lifegiving aspects of positive energy. To transmute is to shapeshift from one form of life to an other, especially to a lifeform that is hale and hearty.

Transmutation subschools
• Animal (poison damage, Beast and the body of any living creature)
• Healing (ideal lifeform, regenerating, enlivening, healing, resurrecting)
• Plant (Plant, vegetation, plant products, crafting)


The spells lists finetune which spells go to which school and subschool. Each list is thematically tight. Build a character concept by deciding which thematic lists are appropriate for it.

= Healing
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Spare the Dying

1st-Level Spells
Cure Wounds
Healing Word

2nd-Level Spells
Gentle Repose
Healing Spirit
Lesser Restoration
Prayer of Healing

3rd-Level Spells
Aura of Vitality
Beacon of Hope
Crusaders Mantle
Mass Healing Word

4th-Level Spells
Aura of Life
Death Ward

5th-Level Spells
Antilife Shell
Greater Restoration
Mass Cure Wounds

6th-Level Spells
Heroes Feast

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells
Mass Heal
Power Word Heal
True Resurrection
(Create Body)

= Planar Magic
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)

1st-Level Spells
Detect Evil / Good (Planar)
Protection from Evil / Good (Planar)

2nd-Level Spells

3rd-Level Spells
Magic Circle
Summon Fey

4th-Level Spells
Conjure Woodland Beings

5th-Level Spells
Banishing Smite
Contact Other Plane
Dispel Evil / Good
Leomunds Secret Chest
Planar Binding
Summon Celestial

6th-Level Spells
Conjure Fey
Drawmijs Instant Summons
Planar Ally
Tashas Otherworldly Guise

7th-Level Spells
Conjure Celestial
Dream of the Blue Veil
Plane Shift

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells

= Spacetime Navigation
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
True Strike

1st-Level Spells
Comprehend Languages
Hunters Mark
Shield of Faith

2nd-Level Spells
Find Traps
Locate Object
Magic Weapon
Nystuls Magic Aura
Warding Bond

3rd-Level Spells
Bestow Curse
Remove Curse

4th-Level Spells
Arcane Eye
Locate Creature
Mordenkainens Private Sanctum

5th-Level Spells
Legend Lore
Skill Empowerment

6th-Level Spells
Find the Path

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells
Astral Projection

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)

1st-Level Spells
Expeditious Retreat

2nd-Level Spells
Misty Step
Rope Trick

3rd-Level Spells

4th-Level Spells
Dimension Door

5th-Level Spells
Steel and Wind Strike
Teleportation Circle

6th-Level Spells
Arcane Gate
Word of Recall

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells
Time Stop

= Force Magic
0-Level Arcane Spells (Cantrips)
Blade Ward
Eldritch Blast
Mage Hand
Sword Burst

1st-Level Arcane Spells
Mage Armor
Magic Missile
Tensers Floating Disc
Unseen Servant
Zephyr Strike

2nd-Level Arcane Spells
Arcane Lock
Spiritual Weapon

3rd-Level Spells

4th-Level Spells
Otilukes Resilient Sphere

5th-Level Spells
Bigbys Hand
Wall of Force

6th-Level Spells

7th-Level Spells
Mordenkainens Sword
Reverse Gravity

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells
Blade of Disaster

= Mind Magic
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Mind Sliver
Vicious Mockery

1st-Level Spells
Cause Fear
Charm Person
Compelled Duel
Dissonant Whispers
Tashas Hideous Laughter
Wrathful Smite

2nd-Level Spells
Calm Emotions
Crown of Madness
Detect Thoughts
Enhance Ability
(Mental Ability: Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma)
Hold Person
Mind Spike
Tashas Mind Whip
Zone of Truth

3rd-Level Spells
Hypnotic Pattern
Intellect Fortress
Phantasmal Force

4th-Level Spells
Charm Monster
Staggering Smite

5th-Level Spells
Dominate Person
Hold Monster
Modify Memory
Phantasmal Killer
Rarys Telepathic Bond
Synaptic Static

6th-Level Spells
Magic Jar
Mass Suggestion
Ottos Irresistable Dance

7th-Level Spells
Power Word Pain

8th-Level Spells
Antipathy / Sympathy
Dominate Monster
Mind Blank

9th-Level Spells
Psychic Scream

= Elemental Magic
Choose two subschools from the following list: Earth, Water, Air, Fire, or Primordial. If taking the Evocation school a second time, you gain all five subschools.

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Magic Stone
(Earth, rock, metal, crystal)
Mold Earth

1st-Level Spells
Earth Tremor

2nd-Level Spells
Cloud of Daggers
Dust Devil
Maximilians Earthen Grasp

3rd-Level Spells
Erupting Earth
Meld into Stone
Tiny Servant
Wall of Sand

4th-Level Spells
Conjure Minor Elementals (Earth)
Fabrication (Earth, rock, metal, crystal)
Stone Shape
Summon Construct
Summon Elemental

5th-Level Spells
Animate Objects (Earth)
Commune with Nature
Conjure Elemental
Transmute Rock
Wall of Stone

6th-Level Spells
Blade Barrier
Bones of the Earth
Flesh to Stone
Investiture of Stone
Move Earth

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells
Mighty Fortress

9th-Level Spells
Meteor Storm

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Ray of Frost
Shape Water

1st-Level Spells
Armor of Agathys
Create or Destroy Water
Ice Knife

2nd-Level Spells
Snillocs Snowball Swarm

3rd-Level Spells
Sleet Storm
Tidal Wave
Wall of Water
Water Breathing
Water Walk

4th-Level Spells
Conjure Minor Elementals (Water)
Control Water
Fire Shield
Ice Storm
Summon Elemental
Watery Sphere

5th-Level Spells
Cone of Cold
Conjure Elemental

6th-Level Spells
Investiture of Ice
Otilukes Freezing Sphere
Wall of Ice

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Booming Blade
Lightning Lure
Shocking Grasp

1st-Level Spells
Feather Fall
Fog Cloud
Guiding Bolt
Thunderous Smite
Witch Bolt

2nd-Level Spells
Gust of Wind

3rd-Level Spells
Call Lightning
Gaseous Form
Lightning Arrow
Lightning Bolt
Thunder Step
Wind Wall

4th-Level Spells
Conjure Minor Elementals (Air)
Storm Sphere
Summon Elemental

5th-Level Spells
Conjure Elemental (Air)
Control Winds

6th-Level Spells
Chain Lightning
Investiture of Wind
Wind Walk

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells
Control Weather

9th-Level Spells
Storm of Vengeance

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Control Flames
Create Bonfire
Dancing Lights
Fire Bolt
Green Flame Blade
Produce Flame
Sacred Flame
Word of Radiance

1st-Level Spells
Burning Hands
Color Spray
Divine Favor
Faerie Fire
Hellish Rebuke
Searing Smite

2nd-Level Spells
Aganazzars Scorcher
Branding Smite
Continual Flame
Flame Blade
Flaming Sphere
Heat Metal
Scorching Ray

3rd-Level Spells
Blinding Smite
Melfs Minute Meteors

4th-Level Spells
Conjure Minor Elementals (Fire)
Fire Shield (Fire)
Guardian of Faith
Sickening Radiance
Summon Elemental
Wall of Fire

5th-Level Spells
Conjure Elemental (Fire)
Flame Strike
Holy Weapon
Wall of Light

6th-Level Spells
Investiture of Flame

7th-Level Spells
Crown of Stars
Delayed Blast Fireball
Fire Storm

8th-Level Spells
Holy Aura
Incendiary Cloud

9th-Level Spells

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Acid Splash

1st-Level Spells
Absorb Elements
Chaos Bolt
Chromatic Orb
Tashas Caustic Brew

2nd-Level Spells
Dragons Breath
Melfs Acid Arrow

3rd-Level Spells
Elemental Weapon
Protection from Energy
Spirit Guardians

4th-Level Spells
Elemental Bane
Shadow of Moil
Vitriolic Sphere

5th-Level Spells
Destructive Wave

6th-Level Spells
Primordial Ward

7th-Level Spells
Prismatic Spray

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells
Prismatic Wall

= Play with Reality
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Minor Illusion

1st-Level Spells
Disguise Self
Silent Image

2nd-Level Spells
Magic Mouth
Mirror Image
See Invisibility
Shadow Blade

3rd-Level Spells
Leomunds Tiny Hut
Major Image
Phantom Steed

4th-Level Spells
Greater Invisibility
Hallucinatory Terrain

5th-Level Spells

6th-Level Spells
Guards and Wards
Mental Prison
Programmed Illusion
True Seeing

7th-Level Spells
Mordenkainens Magnificent Mansion
Mirage Arcane
Project Image

8th-Level Spells
Illusory Dragon
Maddening Darkness

9th-Level Spells

= Darkside
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Chill Touch
Toll the Dead

1st-Level Spells
Arms of Hadar
False Life

2nd-Level Spells

3rd-Level Spells
Animate Dead
Feign Death
Hunger of Hadar
Life Transference
Speak with Dead
Spirit Shroud
Summon Lesser Demons
Summon Shadowspawn
Summon Undead
Vampiric Touch

4th-Level Spells
Summon Aberration

5th-Level Spells
Danse Macabre
Infernal Calling
Negative Energy Flood
Raise Dead

6th-Level Spells
Circle of Death
Create Undead
Soul Cage
Summon Fiend

7th-Level Spells
Finger of Death

8th-Level Spells
Abi-Dalzims Horrid Wilting

9th-Level Spells
Power Word Kill

= Shapeshifting
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Poison Spray
Primal Savagery

1st-Level Spells
Animal Friendship
Beast Bond
Detect Poison / Disease
Find Familiar
Ray of Sickness
Speak with Animals
Spider Climb

2nd-Level Spells
Alter Self
Animal Messenger
Beast Sense
Blindness / Deafness
Enhance Ability
(Physical Ability: Strength, Constitution, and Dexterity)
Enlarge / Reduce
Find Steed
Protection from Poison
Summon Beast

3rd-Level Spells
Conjure Animals
Stinking Cloud

4th-Level Spells
Aura of Purity
Dominate Beast
Edvards Black Tentacles
Find Greater Steed
Freedom of Movement
Giant Insect
Guardian of Nature
Mordenkainens Faithful Hound

5th-Level Spells
Insect Plague

6th-Level Spells
Create Homunculus
Tensers Transformation

7th-Level Spells
Divine Word (Deaf, Blind, Stun, Kill)

8th-Level Spells
Animal Shapes
Power Word Stun

9th-Level Spells
Mass Polymorph
True Polymorph

0-Level Spells (Cantrips)
Thorn Whip

1st-Level Spells
Ensnaring Strike
Hail of Thorns
Purify Food / Drink

2nd-Level Spells
Cordon of Arrows
Locate Animals / Plants
Pass Without Trace
Spike Growth

3rd-Level Spells
Conjure Barrage
Create Food / Water
Plant Growth
Speak with Plants

4th-Level Spells
Grasping Vine

5th-Level Spells
Animate Objects
Conjure Volley
Swift Quiver
Tree Stride
Wrath of Nature

6th-Level Spells
Druid Grove
Transport Via Plants
Wall of Thorns

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells

9th-Level Spells

= Magic of Magic
0-Level Spells (Cantrips)

1st-Level Spells
Detect Magic

2nd-Level Spells

3rd-Level Spells
Dispel Magic
Glyph of Warding

4th-Level Spells

5th-Level Spells
Circle of Power

6th-Level Spells
Globe of Invulnerability (Anti-Spell)

7th-Level Spells

8th-Level Spells
Antimagic Field

9th-Level Spells
Last edited:

log in or register to remove this ad


Examples of usefulness.

One can easily create a spell list with the appropriate themes.

A primal spell list includes Divination, Evocation, and Transmutation.

An arcane spell list includes Conjuration, Evocation, Enchantment and Illusion.

A divine spell list includes Divination, Necromancy, and Transmutation

The Bard is Divination, Enchantment, Illusion, and Transmutation.

The Psion is Conjuration, Divination, Enchantment, and Transmutation.

And so on.

Likewise it is easy to build a specific character concept with the readymade spell lists for each school and subschool.


To make the schools organize the spells more helpfully, the following organizational principles take place.

Evocation already covers all of the elemental "energy" spells, like fire, lightning, and cold. This expands to include all elemental magic: air (lightning-thunder), fire (fire), water (cold), whence earth too. Thus a few earth spells that were transmutations are now evocations instead. The four elements are a central archetypal theme. Evocation is now the school for it. Any players who want elemental themes go to the Evocation spell lists to find their spells.

Divination handles all spacetime magic. Being remotely present elsewhere relates to teleporting elsewhere to be there physically. Conceptually, when scrying the mind is present elsewhere, and a powerful mind can pull their physical body to there. Thus Scry and Teleportation are both aspects of the Divination school. Mechanically, many divination spells are weak, being little more than "DM gives a hint", and completely dependent on the DM playstyle. Moreover, if the DM needs the party to know something, the DM will communicate it one way or an other, and if the DM needs the party to not know something, then no divination will reveal that information. If the DM doesnt care, the information is less likely to matter anyway. A scry itself is awkward to implement mechanically. By contrast, Teleportation is powerful but tends to be a monotonous one-trick-pony. The combination of Scry and Teleportation complements each other well, and forms a satisfying spell list with interesting things to do in the Divination school. Meanwhile, where divinations can be an innate psychic ability, some spells specifically invoke other planes for information. Thus Planar magic generally works as a salient theme for a spell list, and is part of the Divination school. Thus spells like Misty Step and Teleportation Circle are part of the Teleportation subschool, while spells like Planeshift and Contact Other Plane are part of the Planar subschool. But all of these themes are part of the Divination school.

Necromancy is darkside magic, focusing on death and demons, and the like. The term necromancy is often a synonym for demonology, whence the Fiend. Cthulu and the "Necronomicon" extends this necro to the Aberration too. Meanwhile necromancy properly means consulting with the dead for advice, whence the deathly, rotting, and Undead spells generally. Necromancy is the go-to school for the nasty stuff. Necromancy can include Good characters who need to understand the dangerous aspects of magic, whether to defend against it or harness it cautiously. Meanwhile Evil characters can invoke and collaborate with the darker impulses of the creature types in play.

Transmutation. With earth spells relocating to the elemental magic of the Evocation school, the only transmutations left are primal nature magic: beasts, plants, and healing. The beast includes shapechanging into animals, as well as the bodies of any living creatures generally. Healing is a special application of growing and regenerating the body back into a healthy shape − namely transmuting.

Thus "nature magic" easily organizes between the elements of nature − go to the Evocation spell lists − or else the lifeforms of nature − go to the Transmutation spell lists.


Limit Break Dancing (He/They)
I like it! It makes for some interesting tie-ins with elemental wizards, cleric domains, warlocks of certain genies and fiends, magic staffs...

There's a lot here; it'll probably take me a few days to unpack all of the lists and categories, but I like what I'm seeing so far.


I actually would like to go the other way, with "spell schools" being something that wizards have made up to try and make order out of the inherently chaotic and creative nature of magic, and that (like grammar for English) it only kind of works.

I can see sorcerers and warlocks just rolling their eyes at them.

And the Fey, and anyone who knows "true magic" rolling around on the ground laughing.


In the original post, I mention, Abjuration is a useful spell descriptor to tag various defense spells.

It is also worth creating a few other descriptors. Where Abjuration refers to defense spells, perhaps "Hex" can refer to offense spells. "Motility" spells move or impede. "Summoning" spells have the creature or effect do its take actions to functions like an additional member of the team.

One can think of these descriptors as combat roles: Abjuration, Hex, Motility, and Summoning.

With regard Abjuration, here is an example of what the format for the Cure Wounds spell can look like. In addition to its Transmutation school, the spell belongs to the Healing subschool, and the Abjuration combat role.

1st-slot transmutation (healing, abjuration)

Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Touch
Components: S
Duration: Instantaneous

Your touch refreshes energy and regenerates wounds. The creature heals a number of hit points equal to 1d8 + your spellcasting ability.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a 2nd slot or higher, the healing increases by 1d8 for each slot above 1st.f

in older editions like ADnD 2nd certain spells had some advantages based on their school.

Acid arrow was a conjuration.
Creating a vaguely arrow shaped blob of acid that was flying toward your target.

But only conjuring the blob of acid moving at speed was magical, the blob of acid itself was not.
So if you stood outside a dead magic zone you could still launch acid arrows into the dead magic zone.


in older editions like ADnD 2nd certain spells had some advantages based on their school.

Acid arrow was a conjuration.
Creating a vaguely arrow shaped blob of acid that was flying toward your target.

But only conjuring the blob of acid moving at speed was magical, the blob of acid itself was not.
So if you stood outside a dead magic zone you could still launch acid arrows into the dead magic zone.
There are magic spells that produce nonmagical effects. For example, the Create/Destroy Water spell produces water that is presumably nonmagical water.

But there are no clear definitions for what is magical or not. The test is Detect Magic can detect a magical effect. But the DM lacks clear guidelines for what is or isnt magic.

An example is Dragon firebreath. It is produced magically, but the fire itself isnt magic. But that ruling is confusing and debatable.

If I would to create a simple rule: if the spell is "Instantaneous", then the effect itself is nonmagical. But that would make most damage spells nonmagical, and weird situations like Counterspell and Create Undead being as if nonmagical. Maybe the rule could work with some tweaking of specific spells?

In any case, as aspects of elemental magic, both the Create Water and the Acid Arrow would be the Evocation school, rather than a transmutation or a conjuration.
Last edited:

Remove ads