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DnD 5e Wish - A user’s guide to the most powerful D&D spell

Wish 5e is the best spell in Dungeons and Dragons, a feat of magic all Wizards aspire to - but even DnD Wish has its downsides, let us fill you in

DnD Wish 5e - a wizard casting a powerful spell, with lines of power swirling around them.

Wish you knew more about the DnD 5e Wish spell? This 9th level spell is the ultimate feat of magical skill a spellcaster can hope to learn, or as the Player’s Handbook puts it “the mightiest spell a mortal can cast”. Once you know how to cast Wish 5e, nothing is beyond your reach. DnD Wish lets you copy any other spell of 8th level or below, so you’ll have a whole arcane atlas at your fingertips. Its powers don’t stop there either, but be warned! As anyone who’s met a genie will inform you, wishes can have unintended consequences.

Still, any 5e Wizard worth their salt hopes to one day learn the ultimate in 5e spells. Once you’ve checked out how to use the 5e Wish spell, you might find our DnD classes guide handy, as a first step in building your next spell-slinger. And you’ll need to know how a DnD level up works – you’ll need a lot of those under your belt before you can think about casting Wish.

DnD wish 5e - MTG artwork from the card Fae of Wishes

Wish 5e Spell Details

Spell name Wish
Level 9th
Range Self
Duration Instant
Save None
School Conjuration
Components Verbal

Wish only requires a verbal component to cast, so there’s no need to worry about frogs legs and wacky gestures. You don’t have to meet any of the requirements for spells you’re copying with Wish, so there’ll be no material cost for them.

The lack of save and instant duration are contentious features of the Wish 5e spell. It’s mostly used to copy other spells, so the question is: do you get to cast those spells instantaneously, and without a save? The rules are unclear, and the wording ambiguous. Many feel that as you can bypass all requirements of a spell, this should include casting time, concentration, and the like – though most would draw the line at removing saves. Make sure you and your DM agree on the specifics ahead of time.

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What can Wish 5e do?

As we previously alluded to, Wish 5e can do far more than just copy spells, though this is the safest, and most reliable way to use it. In truth, DnD Wish can do virtually anything.

The Player’s Handbook suggests a Wizard could cast Wish to undo a recent event by forcing a reroll, to create a non-magical item of up to 25,000 gp, restore 20 people to full hit points, or give 10 people resistance to a damage type, or immunity to a spell effect. But these are really just examples, intended to indicate that you can use Wish 5e to do something extremely powerful.

You can use the 5e Wish spell for whatever you want, but it’s dangerous to do so, as there’s a lot of room for DM interpretation. Wish for something too powerful, and be incautious with your wording, and you could end up with an evil genie or monkey’s paw effect – your wish comes true, but not in the way you intended. The PHB says a wish of this kind could fail, be only partially successful, or have an unexpected consequence.

In truth, even if you have a friendly DM who won’t mess with your wish, it’s rarely worth casting Wish 5e for anything but spell copying, except in the direst of circumstances or most character-defining story moments. That’s because there are other drawbacks to casting Wish 5e.

DnD wish 5e - MTG artwork from the card Djinn of Wishes

Wish 5e drawbacks

Not only can Wish 5e go wrong if you use it for anything but spell copying, there are also major side effects to hacking reality in this way. The real biggie is, there’s a 1 in 3 chance you’ll never be able to use DnD Wish again if you use it for anything except copying spells. You might get one or two uses out of it, but you risk losing access to the best spell in the game every time.

You’ll also be weakened quite significantly from the stress and shock of casting Wish 5e. Your strength drops to three for 2d4 days, and until you have a long rest, casting other spells damages you, to the tune of 1d10 (unavoidable, and irreducible) necrotic damage per spell level.

Don’t wish on a whim!