Welcome to the Shillelagh 5E cantrip breakdown! Since you have an idea concerning how we experience each spell , we can now delve to the fun part – playing the overall game!
If your dungeon master is anything like me, they’ll reward creativity that matches into the truth of the planet that you will be playing in.
Each article will soon be broken into five sections – The spell attributes, pros, cons, when you are able put it to use, and when you should be contemplating a much better option. So let’s get our spellcasting cap on, and get on with this Shillelagh.
You’re able to cast huge AoE spells to destroy enemies, create healing to keep friends and family in the fight, and shapeshift into a wide selection of animals.
But what about those times when you just need to give an enemy a great smack with your trusty club or quarterstaff? Those times are going to happen, so it’s best to be ready!
Because of the, we turn to 1 of the very most underrated cantrips in D&D 5e: Shillelagh.
This informative article will explain how Shillelagh 5E works in D&D in addition to give tips for using it in your games and answering some typically common questions concerning the cantrip.
What Does Shillelagh 5e Do?
Let’s focus on how Shillelagh is listed in the Player’s Handbook.
The wood of a club or quarterstaff you’re holding is imbued with nature’s power.
For the duration, you can use your spellcasting ability in place of Strength for the attack and damage rolls of melee attacks using that weapon, and the weapon’s damage die becomes a d8.
The weapon also becomes magical, when it isn’t already.
The spell ends in the event that you cast it again or in the event that you forget about the weapon.
- School: Transmutation
- Casting Time: One bonus Action
- Range: Touch
- Components: Verbal, Somatic, Material (mistletoe, a shamrock leaf, and a club or quarterstaff)
- Duration: One Minute
- Classes: Druid
So in place of utilizing the normal ability modifier (Strength, in most cases), you will soon be using your spellcasting ability modifier. As a Druid, this will be your Wisdom modifier.
Without Shillelagh , attacking with your club or quarterstaff would seem like:
1d20 + Strength Modifier + Proficiency Bonus
1d8 + Strength Modifier
As a Druid, I’d be ready to bet that the Wisdom score is higher than your Strength score.
That’s wherever Shillelagh 5E will come in handy if you discover yourself needing to provide some swift bonks to your enemies’heads in a manner that would make Rafiki from the Lion King proud.
Attacking with Shillelagh , your rolls would now seem like this:
1d20 + Wisdom Modifier + Proficiency Bonus
1d8 + Wisdom Modifier
Why Use Shillelagh in 5e? (Pros Vs Cons)
There may most likely be situations in your game where you will need to attack with your weapon. You may be out of Wild Shape uses, don’t wish to burn a large spell on a weak enemy, or Swashbuckler 5e Using Guide.
Strength isn’t such a priority for some Druids, though, so to be able to use your Wisdom modifier on attacks and damage is incredibly helpful.
Additionally, as a significant “pro” for this humble cantrip , your weapon becomes magical for the duration. Especially at low levels as soon as your party likely hasn’t acquired magical weapons yet, monsters that resist nonmagical damage (like ghosts or lycanthropes) can be particularly dangerous.
Because it takes merely a plus action to cast and lasts for one minute, you get 10 rounds of the buff. That ought to be more than enough amount of time in most situations.
Really the only downside to the Shillelagh cantrip is that it doesn’t scale at higher levels. Because you’re only getting one attack action as a Druid, you’re dealing 1d8+WIS damage at most per turn.
That’s great in the early levels, but it’s not exactly something to rely on too heavily once you’re to the mid-levels.
But Shillelagh is really a cantrip that’s the potential to be very high-impact in the proper situations. It’s not uncommon for classes that may get multiple attacks (like Monks, who are also Wisdom-based) to multiclass into Druid simply for this cantrip !
Related: DnD 5E Languages
How and When to Use Shillelagh 5e
Right before you take your first melee attack action in combat, you should utilize your bonus action to cast Shillelagh. This may boost your chance hitting in addition to the total amount of damage that you will be putting out.
The effect should last you the whole fight.
Before, I’ve had situations where in fact the Druid might need to smack something particularly hard to obtain it to work right. In the event of a rusty lever, jammed door, and other such situation, I’ve lowered the difficulty as a result of Druid’s casting of Shillelagh if it’s a predicament where a particularly powerful smack might solve the problem.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are a couple of questions around the use of Shillelagh 5E that I do want to set aside a second to specifically answer.
Is Shillelagh Good in 5e?
I’ve played several Druid characters and I don’t think a single one of them didn’t have Shillelagh.
Even although you do not have to put it to use, it is a great “just in case” spell to possess on your own list. Particularly when you’re playing a strategy and expect you’ll encounter ghosts and other such nonmagical-resistant creatures at early levels, you’ll be glad you took it!
While there is one other cantrip that made our list of the best Druid spells by level, Shillelagh 5E is really a close second!
What Can You Cast Shillelagh on?
Per the spell’s description, Shillelagh is cast on a club or quarterstaff that you will be holding. This effect lasts and soon you cast the spell again or forget about the weapon. Unarmed Strike D&D 5E Explained in detail.
In the event that you are trying to cast Shillelagh on a spear, that’s a bit of a stretch. The spell is meant to utilize a bludgeoning weapon. I guess you can claim that you’re smacking the monsters with the spear in place of lunging at them, but that could be between you and your DM.
Does Shillelagh Work With the Polearm Master Feat?
Among other items, the Polearm Master feat allows you to use your Bonus Action to make a second attack with a polearm. The damage of the second attack is really a d4.
In the event that you combine Shillelagh with the Polearm Master feat, you get an interesting combo when attacking with a staff.
This discussion on Rogue 5e is pretty thorough how this interaction works.
Your first attack with your quarterstaff and Shillelagh would be as described above. The next attack (with the butt of the staff) wouldn’t deal the 1d8 damage from Shillelagh but would still get your Wisdom modifier on the attack roll instead of one’s Strength modifier.
But, as with just about all in D&D, your table might be different.
In the campaign where I played as Joab (who was a Circle of Dreams Druid), I used this combo.
Talking it over with the DM, he agreed that finding a d8 damage in place of a d4 on the second attack was fine. It runs on the bonus action and situations where my character needed to attack together with his staff were incredibly rare as our game went on.
For players, always speak with your DM but accept nevertheless they rule on an issue.
For DMs, always look for opportunities to empower your players and let them do cool stuff.
Does Shillelagh Count as a Spell Attack?
Attacks made out of a system that you’ve cast Shillelagh 5E on are effectively normal melee attacks with a wonderful weapon.
The reason being the weapon itself is enchanted. The spell is not cast each time you’re swinging the weapon.
Is Shillelagh Magic Damage?
Because a club or quarterstaff that you cast Shillelagh on is regarded as magical, that weapon’s damage is not resisted by creatures that would resist non-magical damage.
The weapon still does bludgeoning damage but overcomes resistance to non-magical damage.
Can You Cast Shillelagh on a Magic Weapon?
Yes, you can cast Shillelagh on a magic weapon when it fits the other requirements on the spell. That’s, it should be a club or quarterstaff manufactured from wood.
Can You Attack With Shillelagh as a Bonus Action?
Casting Shillelagh on your own weapon requires a bonus action. From there, you would use your Action to attack as you normally would, but now you have a pumped-up staff or club to help you bring the pain.
Unlike some spells which can be cast as you are attacking, Shillelagh just requires a bonus action. If you don’t have usage of your bonus action in the very first round of combat and aren’t attacking with your weapon this turn, you should cast Shillelagh in case you wind up needing it later.
Do You Add Proficiency to Shillelagh?
Your proficiency bonus is added to attacks with a system that you have cast Shillelagh on.
As explained earlier in this informative article, your attack roll would be 1d20 + WIS + your proficiency bonus. The damage roll would be 1d8 + WIS.
Conclusion – Shillelagh 5e
I really hope you found this guide useful!
The Shillelagh 5E spell is a great example of low-level abilities with big impact. It absolutely deserves a place on every Druid’s list of prepared spells !
If you’re searching for more magical guidance on your own spellcasting journey, have a look at this other article I wrote detailing Haste 5E Spell D&D!