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One small change to the DnD Wizard makes me sad

Beware, Dungeons and Dragons Wizards – this One DnD change will make you rethink saying “I don’t care how big the room is, I cast Fireball”.

New Dungeons and Dragons rules for the Evocation Wizard have moved their Sculpt Spells feature to level six, a D&D YouTube video from June 27 confirms. It’s not a major change, and it might even be better for balance. But as a Fireball addict, I’m feeling sad about it.

In case you haven’t picked up your DnD books in a while, Sculpt Spells lets Evocation Wizards create safety zones inside their area-of-effect spells – provided they belong to the evocation school of magic. Any creatures inside one of these bubbles automatically succeed on saving throws against the spell. Additionally, they take no damage if the rules would ask them to take half damage.

Basically, this allows a DnD Wizard to safely cast Fireball (the Big Daddy of all evocation spells) in a small space. There’s no risk of friendly fire, so no real-life friends will get mad at you for wiping out their character.

DnD art by Wizards of the Coast, showing a Wizard casting Fireball

The One DnD rules haven’t changed how Sculpt Spells works. However, they’ve changed it from a second-level feature to a sixth-level one.

The reasonable person in me doesn’t want to be upset about this. You can’t learn Fireball 5e until level five anyway, and there’s not much need to Sculpt Spells before then. Plus, this re-balance might even the score between DnD Wizard subclasses, making them all seem like equally strong choices.

It’s a sensible design decision. I, however, am not a sensible D&D player. And, when the new Player’s Handbook releases in September, my Wizard will be pining for that lost opportunity to spam Fireball at level five.

YouTube Thumbnail

Great balls of fire aside (goodness gracious), this change reflects the general approach D&D has taken when re-designing the Wizard class. Namely, they haven’t reinvented the wheel.

While early playtests showed Wizards learning to create their own spells, the final draft mainly offers small quality-of-life tweaks. This includes gaining expertise in one of the DnD skills, as well as more flexibility with swapping and preparing spells. You can see the full rundown of changes in the video above.

For more character options, check out our guides to DnD classes and DnD races. You can also follow Wargamer on Google News for more tabletop updates. There you’ll find stories by my colleague Tim Linward – who thinks that if you’re going to cast a reckless Fireball, you should be forced to hit your friends.