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D&D 5E Ritual caster: can they create or use scrolls?

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Hello

In part for RP reasons, in part because our party really needs a ritual caster, I am considering taking the feat "ritual caster" for my fighter (yes, he qualifies).

But I was wondering... does that mean he could create scrolls? What about using them?

So to create a scroll, you must either:

  • have the spell prepared OR
  • it must be among the character’s known spells (like a bard or warlock for example)

So clearly a ritual caster doesn't have spell prepared. And while they "know" spells in the sense that it's in their spellbook, they don't know it by heart the way say a sorcerer would. So I think that means a ritual caster can't create scrolls. But it doesn't quite feel right.

But can they use them?

This... gets complicated. The rules say "If the spell is on your class’s spell list, you can read the scroll and cast its spell without providing any material components. "

So a strict reading means that no, fighters can't use scrolls. But I note two aspects that make me less certain about this.

1: There are a lot of ways a caster can know a spell "not on their class list". What about domain spells, or a bard magical secret? What about a feat that makes you learn a new spells? If say you have the magical adept feat to learn the spell healing word, it would be very peculiar if you couldn't use a scroll of said spell, wouldn't it? It could mean that a light cleric can make a scroll of fireball, but can't use it.

2: Fighters have access to the wizard spell lists via one subclass

I look forward to your input on these questions.
 
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Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
My view also. I think a very strict reading of the rules would not allow it but I think I would allow it. You need to discuss with your DM.
Out of curiosity, why does your party need a ritual caster?
Lack of support. The party is made up of a monk, a fighter, a ranger, a paladin (due to the player's RL work, the paladin's attendance is very inconsistent) and a rogue/sorcerer. Rolepplaying wise it makes sense too (the fighter is a scholar and knows more about magic than anyone else in the party... even though he can't cast a single spell)
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
1: There are a lot of ways a caster can know a spell "not on their class list". What about domain spells, or a bard magical secret? What about a feat that makes you learn a new spells? If say you have the magical adept feat to learn the spell healing word, it would be very peculiar if you couldn't use a scroll of said spell, wouldn't it? It could mean that a light cleric can make a scroll of fireball, but can't use it.

2: Fighters have access to the wizard spell lists via one subclass

My thoughts on these points:

1. Magical secrets spells "count as bard spells for you". A domain spell "is nonetheless a cleric spell for you". This wording indicates that the spell is on your list.

Magical adept is different, and I would not automatically assume that someone adept at casting a single first level spell cold use a scroll; in the same way I wouldn't let a racial spell give the ability to use scrolls.

2. If you have that subclass, then I'd be fine letting the character use scrolls. If they have chosen something else, or if they haven't chosen anything yet, then you can't.
 

UngainlyTitan

Hero
Supporter
Lack of support. The party is made up of a monk, a fighter, a ranger, a paladin (due to the player's RL work, the paladin's attendance is very inconsistent) and a rogue/sorcerer. Rolepplaying wise it makes sense too (the fighter is a scholar and knows more about magic than anyone else in the party... even though he can't cast a single spell)
Given those circumstances and I have run a campaign with a multiclassed sorcerer, I would it, probably definitely allow it if the fighter is proficient in Arcana. I would probably require arcana training but allow it in downtime. But, as I said this is very much in the gift of the DM.
 


Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
The best argument I can produce: The ritual caster can transcribe ritual spells into her book. For those spells, they should be able to use spells on scrolls with the ritual tag.
 


UngainlyTitan

Hero
Supporter
This would make sense, but due to the particulars of the campaign the fighter is being reworked... into a rune knight.
As I said I would be inclined to allow the fighter to spend time and money to acquire proficiency in Arcana and once they take the Ritual Caster feat them allow the scribing of scrolls and using scrolls but only on spells they have in their book and only as rituals.
 




Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
As I said I would be inclined to allow the fighter to spend time and money to acquire proficiency in Arcana and once they take the Ritual Caster feat them allow the scribing of scrolls and using scrolls but only on spells they have in their book and only as rituals.
the character already has Arcana, as he has the sage background (in fact, he's far more knowledgeable about magic than the sorcerer-rogue)
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
odd - by my read of the RAW, it's pretty clear they can't make them, but slightly less clear about using them.
Interesting. They know the spell, and can cast it.

The rule might be different in Xanathar’s vs the core, but it says “In addition, the character must have proficiency in the Arcanaskill and must provide any material components required for the casting of the spell. Moreover, the character must have the spell prepared, or it must be among the character’s known spells, in order to scribe a scroll of that spell.”

So unless the argument is that ritual casters don’t know the spells they learn, I’m not sure what leads to a no.

For using, I suppose one could argue that since you are learning ritual spells that are on a specific class spell list, they count as being on your class spell list? That’s probably the logic I’d use when allowing it.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Interesting. They know the spell, and can cast it.

The rule might be different in Xanathar’s vs the core, but it says “In addition, the character must have proficiency in the Arcanaskill and must provide any material components required for the casting of the spell. Moreover, the character must have the spell prepared, or it must be among the character’s known spells, in order to scribe a scroll of that spell.”

So unless the argument is that ritual casters don’t know the spells they learn, I’m not sure what leads to a no.

For using, I suppose one could argue that since you are learning ritual spells that are on a specific class spell list, they count as being on your class spell list? That’s probably the logic I’d use when allowing it.
the thing is, what is "known spells", what is that making reference to?

I see it as a reference to casters that don't prepare spells (like say, a bard). A bard doesn't prepare spells because they don't know many, but those they do they know so well they can just cast from memory, no need for a spellbook or prayer to "load them" into their mind.

A "non spellcasting" ritual caster can't prepare spells, and they aren't "known" in their mind like a bard/warlock/etc either. So by my read of the RAW, they can't create scrolls.

Now, if you think that "known spell" is just the generic "things the PC can do" vs the specific mechanism by which some casters have magic in their mind, then you are completely correct.
 



Mort

Legend
Supporter
Per RAW - not I don't think you can use OR create scrolls. The feat just allows you to scribe spells you find (and ONLY if they have the ritual tag) into your ritual book and then cast them as rituals.

Personally, I would probably allow allow casting from spell scrolls with this feat.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
the thing is, what is "known spells", what is that making reference to?

I see it as a reference to casters that don't prepare spells (like say, a bard). A bard doesn't prepare spells because they don't know many, but those they do they know so well they can just cast from memory, no need for a spellbook or prayer to "load them" into their mind.

A "non spellcasting" ritual caster can't prepare spells, and they aren't "known" in their mind like a bard/warlock/etc either. So by my read of the RAW, they can't create scrolls.

Now, if you think that "known spell" is just the generic "things the PC can do" vs the specific mechanism by which some casters have magic in their mind, then you are completely correct.
So here are the relevant rules that I’m referencing in my read of RAW.

“You have learned a number of spells that you can cast as rituals. These spells are written in a ritual book, which you must have in hand while casting one of them.”

If you’ve learnt a thing, you certainly know it.

“The cost represents material components you expend as you experiment with the spell to master it, as well as the fine inks you need to record it.”

To master a thing requires that one knows it.

Between those things, the fact that you have a class spell list you are choosing rituals from, and the fact it repeatedly refers to you casting these spells, it’s clear to me that these are spells that you know and can cast. I don’t think there is anything in the rules that contradicts this, but I’m open to being proven wrong.
 

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