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Shillelagh - Why no scaling?

Why is shillelagh the only damaging cantrip (unless I missed others) that does not scale at all when you level.

I ask because I love the spell but it is really becomes pointless quickly as you level while other cantrips are still viable if not the optimal choice in a round.

If you were to add some scaling to the cantrip?

Side question, can you cast magic weapon, elemental weapon or a similar weapon enhancing spell on a cantrip shillelagh?
 

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5ekyu

Hero
Why is shillelagh the only damaging cantrip (unless I missed others) that does not scale at all when you level.

I ask because I love the spell but it is really becomes pointless quickly as you level while other cantrips are still viable if not the optimal choice in a round.

If you were to add some scaling to the cantrip?

Side question, can you cast magic weapon, elemental weapon or a similar weapon enhancing spell on a cantrip shillelagh?
Shill does not scale because unlike the other cantrips it affects all your strikes over time with that weapon. The cantrips that scale limit themselves to one damage effect,
... one spell one hurt.

If shill boosted every hit over time *and* scaled that dmg too that leads for a multiplying impact of you add in fighters with a little druid multiclass for instance.

That's how I see it at least.
 

Shill does not scale because unlike the other cantrips it affects all your strikes over time with that weapon. The cantrips that scale limit themselves to one damage effect,
... one spell one hurt.

If shill boosted every hit over time *and* scaled that dmg too that leads for a multiplying impact of you add in fighters with a little druid multiclass for instance.

That's how I see it at least.

What you said makes sense for anything but a cantrip in my opinion. You can endlessly cast the cantrip and keep inflicting damage. Sure you only cast Shill once but you have to roll to hit to do any damage. So is there a difference between casting Produce Flame over and over again and rolling to hit and casting Shill once and then having to roll to hit over and over again as you attack?
 

ClaytonCross

Kinder reader Inflection wanted
Shill does not scale because unlike the other cantrips it affects all your strikes over time with that weapon. The cantrips that scale limit themselves to one damage effect,
... one spell one hurt.

If shill boosted every hit over time *and* scaled that dmg too that leads for a multiplying impact of you add in fighters with a little druid multiclass for instance.

That's how I see it at least.


It's also combatable with other cantrips like Booing Blade and Green Flame Blade so if it scaled you could make a multiclass or Druid + take magic initiate X and do insane damage. Shadow Blade for example is very similar but is concentration so you can one lose it and two it blocks you using any other concentration spells. It also has a cost as a level two spell. A persistent cantrip that doesn't require concentration, allows melee opportunity attacks, doesn't fail and scales damage is just too powerful. Higher level spells like Shadow blade with its concentration just make more since.
 

5ekyu

Hero
What you said makes sense for anything but a cantrip in my opinion. You can endlessly cast the cantrip and keep inflicting damage. Sure you only cast Shill once but you have to roll to hit to do any damage. So is there a difference between casting Produce Flame over and over again and rolling to hit and casting Shill once and then having to roll to hit over and over again as you attack?
Because a fighter-druid with extra attack can make two shill boosted attacks while your produce flame is still just one attack.

See the diff? Produce flame, chill touch etc use your action each time.

Shill boosts your attack over multiple turns.

Imagine at like 12th level a fighter swinging three times doing 3d8 each base before all the other stuff adds on?

What you are asking about is basically doubling up on the scaling since the right build would scale the damage and the number of attacks.
 


There would be armies of fighters with the magic iniate feat and the shill cantrip... :D
The fighter has enough feats to spend, more than one extra attack, and then a magic stick for 4d8 at level 17?
Hehe, nice try... ;)
 

Notice that cantrips increase in damage at level 5, the same level that fighters get a extra attack. This is to enable casters to roughly keep up. Shillalagh, however, unlike any scaling cantrip, can benefit from extra attacks itself. I think the conclusion is obvious.
 


Li Shenron

Legend
Notice that cantrips increase in damage at level 5, the same level that fighters get a extra attack. This is to enable casters to roughly keep up. Shillalagh, however, unlike any scaling cantrip, can benefit from extra attacks itself. I think the conclusion is obvious.

A Druid does not have Extra Attacks. I don't believe this spell is designed for multiclass characters.
 

A Druid does not have Extra Attacks. I don't believe this spell is designed for multiclass characters.
If it was only available to single-class druids, and druids where banned from taking the Pole Arm Master feet, that would be fair comment.

But it's pretty easy (and common) for classes which do gain extra attacks to pick up, even without a dip into druid. Magic Adept feat being the most obvious.

And you don't even need to gain extra attacks - as already mentioned, stacking it with Booming Blade or Green Flame Blade produces a similar effect. If you want to play a single class druid who fights with a Shillelagh after level 5 you might pick up one or both of those via Magic Adept or Spell Sniper.
 
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S'mon

Legend
If you don't use Feats or Multiclassing I think it would be fine to rewrite the spell with scaling. Or make it a feature for some Druid Circles that they get to scale it.

Edit: Really, looking at the spell, it seems like a quick way to ensure the Druid can make magic weapon attacks. Making the weapon's die a d8 doesn't increase 2-handed quarterstaff damage
and polearm master feat bonus attack does not use the polearm's weapon damage die.

I think it would be fine to increase the damage die to d10 at Druid (Circle of the Land) 5th, d12 at Druid 11th,
and d20 at Druid 17th. :D
 
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If you don't use Feats or Multiclassing I think it would be fine to rewrite the spell with scaling. Or make it a feature for some Druid Circles that they get to scale it.

Even if you banned feats and multiclassing if you altered the base spell it could still be acquired and exploited by valor bards and warlocks.

Having it a feature of a druid circle might work.


A better option might be to design a Druid cantrip similar to BB/GFB, or grant those cantrips as a circle feature.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
If it was only available to single-class druids, and druids where banned from taking the Pole Arm Master feet, that would be fair comment.

But it's pretty easy (and common) for classes which do gain extra attacks to pick up, even without a dip into druid. Magic Adept feat being the most obvious.

No, it is not common. Like, at all.

Most players of a martial class do not dip into magic abilities. Those who do, they either look for boosts on their own attacks or for complementary abilities (some tricks their characters could otherwise not be able to do). But to a martial class character that already has martial weapon proficiency and likely doesn't have higher Wisdom than Strength, the Shillelagh doesn't offer any other boost than the weapon counting as magical, which can help in low-level or low-magic campaigns, but scaling-damage cantrips still do better.

The only non-Druid character who can really benefit from Shillelagh is the Monk.
 

Speek for your own games. In my experience, it's common.

Clerics, Rangers, Monks.

With dip into Tomelock, Paladins.

And it's a no-brainer for Valor bards.

(and with UA, dip into Giant Soul Sorcerer)


OC, if the damage scaled, it would pretty quickly outstrip GWF, and everyone would be making wisdom-fighters.
 
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Zardnaar

Legend
Physical attacks scale in most classes. Clerics get an extra d8 at level 8, warrior types get multiple attacks and rogues get sneak attack.

Things like nature clerics also exist and are one of the best beatdown clerics due to shillagh.

We have an arcane cleric level 5 using it with green flame blade and spiritual guardians dealing fighter level damage.
 

5ekyu

Hero
A Druid does not have Extra Attacks. I don't believe this spell is designed for multiclass characters.
But multiclass characters are considered in balancing things.

But its pretty straightforward... If the cantrip effect is "per action", it tends to scale. If cantrip applies effect to all attacks over time, turning its benefit into "per attack", it doesnt scale.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
A Druid does not have Extra Attacks. I don't believe this spell is designed for multiclass characters.

I think the limitation of scaling indicates clearly that it *is* designed with multiclassing in mind.

The basic point is that the other damaging cantrips are themselves attack actions. This one *enhances* attack actions, rather than being one.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
If you have shillelagh scale like other cantrips, than you have a whole list of possible interactions that might become problematic if they gain access to it.

If you leave shillelagh alone, you have one underperforming cantrip for one class.

I think the route you go is kind of obvious.

If you absolutely must have shillelagh scale, make it an action that performs a melee spell attack.
 


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