Wikia

Dungeons and Dragons Wiki

Epic Spells from a Practical Viewpoint (3.5e Other)

Talk0
9,545pages on
this wiki
Created By
Luigifan18 (talk)
Date Created: October 5, 2012
Status: Complete until the next epic spell shows up
Editing: Please feel free to edit constructively!





Let's face it - epic spells tend to be awesome. Even the simplest of epic spells are only available to the most powerful and experienced of spellcasters. But not all epic spells are created equal. In order to learn or cast an epic spell, you need to make a Spellcraft check. And some of those DCs can be outrageously high, so much so that you can't help but wonder how the heck anyone can pull it off. Then there are the ones whose mitigating factors make them an utter pain to cast! If you need a third of a year, a mountain of hit points, a small army of spellcasters, or more money than the Malfoys to cast a spell (or, even worse, all of those things at once), there's something terribly wrong with it. So, if you want to know which epic spells to study and which to leave on the shelf, here's where to look!

Improving SpellcraftEdit

First, here's a (probably nowhere near complete) list of ways to improve Spellcraft (at least for the purpose of epic spellcasting), since your ranks and Intelligence modifier probably won't be enough for the bigger epic spells...

What makes epic spells easy or hard to use?Edit

Now, how I classify the ease of using epic spells... My criteria for ease of use are, in order of importance: DC (lower is better), extra spellcasters required (fewer is better, none is ideal), backlash (less is better), casting time (shorter is better), material component price (smaller is better), focus price (smaller is better), and XP cost (smaller is better). Basically, DC is the ultimate determinant of whether or not the spell's practical to cast. Next up is extra spellcasters; the more spellcasters you need, the harder it is to get a coordinated effort in place to cast the spell (and if the other casters have to take backlash damage, spend a long time casting, or spend XP, good luck with getting them to agree.) After that is backlash damage - it takes a lot of work for a character to become epic, so a spell that requires you to put yourself at (or beyond) the brink of death is really, really unwise to cast. Next is casting time - an immediate, swift, standard, or full-round action or single round is ideal, but a minute (or two, or even three) is an acceptable amount of time to spend casting in a combat situation. Four minutes or more gives your enemies a lot of time to interrupt, and practically restricts the spell to noncombat use only. One or two days can be acceptable if you have nothing else to do and can afford to devote yourself to your spell, but if you have to spend weeks or months casting a spell, that begs the question of how you're managing to sleep or eat, not to mention how you can keep your uninterrupted attention on your spell for such a long span of time. Finally, we have the numerical expenditures. Ordinarily, XP cost is a better balancing factor than expensive material components, but epic characters tend to get large amounts of XP per encounter; however, they may very well have better things to spend their cash on than material components. On the other hand, an epic feat is avaliable to make material components utterly unnecessary.

The List of Epic SpellsEdit

And, without further ado, here's the list of all the epic spells (both official and homebrewed), in order from lowest to highest DC, and my judgment call on how easy each epic spell is to use:

  • 23 - Vivacious Jar (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 11-minute casting time, 200,000 gp material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 27 - Ruin (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-round casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,000 XP cost... exceptionally good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 27 - Peripety (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... exceptionally good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 29 - Dreamscape (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... exceptionally good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 35 - Mummy Dust ((No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, 10,000 gp material component, no focus, 400 XP cost... exceptionally good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 37 - Tactical Nuke (No extra spellcasters, 14d6 backlash, 3-round casting time, 125,000 gp material component, 1,000,000 gp focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 38 - Dragon Knight (2 extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 38 - Raise Island (20 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 65-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,000 XP cost (all but one extra spellcaster must pay)... fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 38 - Origin of Species: Achaierai (31 extra spellcasters, 50d6 backlash, 100-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 10,000 XP cost... 50d6 backlash?!? How many hit points do they expect a wizard to have?!? Not to mention, you've got 32 people (including the primary caster) wasting 100 days to make what's basically a devilish cassowary with bad gas. Poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 42 - Eclipse (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 4,000 XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 43 - Let Go of Me (No extra spellcasters, 10d6 backlash, swift action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost, only usable when grappling... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 45 - Spell Worm (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use (and very practical for utterly ruining a spellcaster's day).)
  • 45 - Greater Spell Resistance (2 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 46 - Epic Mage Armor (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 49 - Gathering of Maggots (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 7-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 50 - Animus Blast (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 50 - Lord of Nightmares (No extra spellcasters, 12d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 1,000 XP cost, lose autonomy... good spell in terms of ease of use. Unfortunately, dream larvae tend to be jerks.)
  • 50 - Dragon Strike (11 extra spellcasters, 3d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,000 XP cost (must be paid by every caster)... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 52 - Contingent Resurrection (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 52 - Epic Repulsion (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 55 - Mass Frog (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 55 - Soul Scry (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 56 - Crown of Vermin (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 56 - Rain of Fire (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 58 - Verdigris (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 58 - Create Living Vault (7 extra spellcasters, 9d6 backlash, 100-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 20,000 XP cost (must be paid by every caster)... yes, the DC is low, but the mitigating factors are so over-the-top that how anyone manages to cast this is beyond me. (How the heck do you get 8 people to concentrate on a single spell for 100 straight days?!?!? And if concentrating remains a standard action... yikes.) Very poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 59 - Greater Ruin (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,000 XP cost... excellent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 59 - Superb Dispelling (No extra spellcasters, 10d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 60 - Purifying Sanctuary (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 5-round casting time (with complete vulnerability), no material component, 200,000 gp focus, no XP cost, only available to worshippers of Yawheh... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 62 - Nailed to the Sky (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 1,000 XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 64 - Safe Time (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 68 - Epic Spell Reflection (6 extra spellcasters, 20d6 backlash, 41-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 9,500 XP cost (must be paid by all casters)... poor (but not quite horrible) spell in terms of ease of use, but the effect just might be worth it.)
  • 69 - Epic Counterspell (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 71 - Time Duplicate (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, swift action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 72 - Summon Behemoth (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 72 - Soul Dominion (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 77 - Complete Restoration (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... using it in combat is stupid, but if you can spare the time, it's simple to use; good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 78 - Animus Blizzard (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 79 - Eidolon (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,500 XP cost... very good spell in terms of ease of use. The negative levels are a pain, but having two of you around is sure to make hilarity ensue.)
  • 80 - Demise Unseen (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 80 - Electrocute (No extra spellcasters, 6d6 backlash, standard action casting time, 2,500 gp material component, 300,000 gp focus, 1,000 XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 80 - Enslave (4 extra spellcasters, 2d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,000 XP cost (must be paid by every caster)... decent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 81 - Blizzard Bolt (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 83 - Supreme Counterspell (No extra spellcasters, 20d6 backlash, immediate action casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,500 XP, 1 point of Wisdom burn, only usable as a counterspell... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 83 - Hunters of Undeath (60 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 4-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 8,000 XP cost (must be paid by primary caster and 12 extra casters) and 6,000 XP cost (must be paid by 30 extra casters)... fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use. And it's also probably nigh-useless.)
  • 86 - Momento Mori (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, swift action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 90 - Hellball (No extra spellcasters, 10d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 200 XP cost... fairly good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 94 - Volcano (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 100-day & 11-minute casting time, no material component, 1,000,000 focus, no XP cost... rather poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 97 - Damnation (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 2,400 XP cost... DC begins to stretch limits of credulity, but is still quite achievable for high-level spellcasters; good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 100 - Kinetic Control (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 100 - Primal Calling (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 104 - Pestilence (2 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 10,000 XP cost... decent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 109 - Ultima (No extra spellcasters, 20d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, 5,000 XP cost... decent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 113 - Megaton (556 extra spellcasters, 4d6 backlash (sustained by all casters), 100-day & 11-minute casting time, 500,000 gp material component, 1,000,000 gp focus, no XP cost... When I said that needing lots of casters was bad, this is the spell I was thinking of. No, wait, this is the spell I was thinking of when I mentioned how mitigating factors could utterly ruin an epic spell. Between the price, the need for extra casters, and the painfully long casting time - not to mention that you need an entire magical militia - this spell just is not possible to cast. How in God's name are you going to get 556 people to set aside 100 days to do nothing but chant, then try to flee 5.9 miles in 10 minutes once it's over?!? And how the heck are you going to hide it from the people you're trying to blow up?!? 557 people doing nothing but chanting and gesturing for a couple of months is bound to make people think "lunatic cult", and since cults are never good news in the world of D&D, it's only a matter of time before adventuring parties and soldiers show up to start whacking the spellcasters. There is no way anyone will ever manage to cast this spell, no matter how absurdly overpowered they are. And anyone dumb enough to try it deserves the epic smackdown they're going to receive once the defenders of whatever city they're trying to vaporize show up to spoil their fun (not to mention their concentration).)
  • 120 - Sunfire Orb (4 extra spellcasters, no backlash, standard action casting time, no material component, no focus, 8,000 XP cost... fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 130 - Declaration of Death (No extra spellcasters, 12d6 backlash, standard action casting time, no material component, no focus, 3,500 XP cost... DC is a little high, but reachable for a dedicated spellcaster; the backlash damage is just high enough to be dangerous. Decent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 140 - Living Lightning (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... fairly good spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 149 - Blood of the Pale Moon (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost; DC is a little high, but reachable for a dedicated spellcaster; decent spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 150 - Eternal Freedom (10 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 10,000 XP cost... fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 170 - Verdigris Tsunami (14 extra spellcasters, no backlash, 10-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 10,000 XP cost (all but 3 spellcasters must pay)... very poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 172 - Shadow Asgard (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 5,000 XP cost... fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 200 - Veles Serpent (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 2-minute casting time, 120,000 gp material component, 3,000 gp focus, 6,000 XP cost, only available to worshippers of Veles... DC is quite high, so only excellent spellcasters can even hope to utilize this spell. Fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 200 - Perun Eagle (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 2-minute casting time, 120,000 gp material component, 3,000 gp focus, 6,000 XP cost, only available to worshippers of Perun... DC is quite high, so only excellent spellcasters can even hope to utilize this spell. Fairly poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 319 - Dire Winter (No extra spellcasters, no backlash, 1-minute casting time, no material component, no focus, 10,000 XP cost... DC is very high, so only exceptional spellcasters can even hope to utilize this spell. Very poor spell in terms of ease of use.)
  • 419 - Vengeful Gaze of God (No extra spellcasters, 200d6 backlash, full-round action casting time, no material component, no focus, no XP cost... You have got to be kidding me. Not only is the DC obscenely high, the backlash damage is also utterly outrageous. There's no way in the Abyss this is going to be cast by any reasonably playable character.)

See alsoEdit



Back to Main Page3.5e HomebrewOther

Advertisement | Your ad here

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki