Skip to Content

Divine Intervention 5e

Divine Intervention 5e

Pray to the god of chance

As the scourge surrounded us in the dark, the Cleric took to her last resort: she prayed. We waited, skeptical but desperate. Then, the sky parted, and a warmth radiated down. We heard shadowy screams, and saw all those fiery eyes extinguish two by two. The Cleric crossed her heart and kissed her beads. We asked no questions, and carried on through the night. 

What is Divine Intervention 5e?

DnD 5e’s Divine Intervention is a signature 10th-level Cleric class feature allowing intervention from a deity. After requesting intervention, the Cleric rolls a d100 (2d10s) and combines the results (one d10: tens column, other d10: ones column). A result below or equal to the Cleric’s level means the intervention succeeds. The DM then interprets how the Cleric’s deity intervenes.

Here is Divine Intervention’s description from the Player’s Handbook:

Beginning at 10th level, you can call on your deity to intervene on your behalf when your need is great.

Imploring your deity’s aid requires you to use your action. Describe the assistance you seek, and roll percentile dice. If you roll a number equal to or lower than your cleric level, your deity intervenes. The DM chooses the nature of the intervention; the effect of any cleric spell or cleric domain spell would be appropriate. If your deity intervenes, you can’t use this feature again for 7 days. Otherwise, you can use it again after you finish a long rest.

At 20th level, your call for intervention succeeds automatically, no roll required.

At level 20, you are so righteous that your god grants your request without a roll! It’s like a get out jail free card to keep in your robe’s back pocket. This means, at level 20, a Cleric gets one free Divine Intervention per week! Save it for when a Beholder or a Mind Flayer pops out of the woodwork.

D&D Player’s Handbook
$49.95 $26.10

Buy on Amazon Buy at Noble Knight
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
09/28/2023 04:30 pm GMT

How does Divine Intervention 5e work?

Just call for Divine Intervention—dramatically!—and roll a d100. Divine Intervention succeeds on a number equal to or lower than your level. Since you can only reach level 20 in normal games of DnD 5e, this means you have a 1-19% chance of succeeding on Divine Intervention from levels 1-19, respectively. At level 20 you succeed automatically.

Let’s say you are a level 9 Cleric Tortle. You’ve battled across the land and are right outside your enemy’s walls. You’ve tried everything else, but the walls are insurmountable. You get on your wrinkly knees and cry out to Umberlee, a DnD deity of the Sea, for Divine Intervention. 

You roll both d10s at once. You get a 00 on the double digit d10. You get an 8 on the single digit d10. 00 (tens column) + 8 (ones column) = 08! You are level 9, and 8 is lower than you, so Umberlee intervenes!

Now, the DM gets to decide how Umberlee intervenes. The Divine Intervention description says “The DM chooses the nature of the intervention: the effect of any cleric spell or Cleric domain spell would be appropriate.” Some DM’s are more conservative, while others like to go wild. Ultimately, you are at the DM’s whim! 

Divine Intervention is a fantastic opportunity for storytelling…and mayhem. If you ask for too much, your DM might make you careful what you wish for. If you ask Umberlee to destroy the city for you, for example, maybe the winds howl your name during the destruction—so everyone knows it was your doing. Or maybe you get caught in the flood and washed out to sea. 

If you are more reasonable, and simply ask Umberlee to break down the walls for you, the DM should oblige you without any backfire. The optimal word is should

After success, you can’t call on your god again for 7 days. Divine Intervention is tiring!

What does the Divine Intervention do in 5e?

Divine Intervention is when the Cleric’s deity personally intervenes to fix a problem the Cleric, or the Cleric’s party, can’t handle on their own. Divine Intervention is only appropriate “when your need is great.” Your deity will likely ignore you, and get super annoyed if you spam Divine Intervention for frivolous requests. 

So what does “when your need is great” mean? You can use Divine Intervention in 5e to:

  • Save your party from a TPK (Total Party Kill)
  • Defeat an intimidating enemy 
  • Locate a weapon or musical instrument
  • Solve a crisis
  • See into the future
  • Teleport
  • Become rich
  • Escape a sticky situation
  • Revive dead characters

There are no limits on what kind of assistance you can seek…but any good DM will determine if your need is truly “great” and maintain balance when granting the request.  

According to the Dungeon Master’s Guide, both Divine Intervention and Wish can end the hostility of a creature turned against you by the Deck of Many Things, or remove a Charm from a creature. 

The way your god intervenes is also dependent on the god! When granting a Divine Intervention, a good DM will fully take into account:

  • What type of deity it is (celestial, demon, devil, a human with powers, etc.)
  • Your relationship with your deity
  • The deity’s alignment
  • Surrounding circumstances
  • Your party’s behavior
  • Narrative opportunities

Your deity’s domain is also a heavy factor in how your god intervenes. These are the current domains for deities in D&D 5e:

A deity should intervene differently, depending on the domain they hail from. For example, if you ask to escape from prison, Cyric, God of Lies from the Trickery domain, might make the guards think you are innocent and let you go, while Loviatar, the Goddess of Pain from the Death domain, might…cause lots of pain and death.

Divine Intervention also states that “any cleric spell or cleric domain spell would be appropriate” as intervention. So, a spell in any of the Cleric Domains in 5e can work…which is a lot.

Also remember that Divine Intervention is rare! At level 1 you have a 1 percent chance of succeeding (rolling a 00 and a 01), at level 2 you have a 2 percent chance, etc. So when Divine Intervention happens, it can alter the course of the game.

GameCows Tip: According to the Monster Manual, only Divine Intervention can release a soul after a devil has claimed it, or restore a creature to life consumed by a Lich. If you find yourself in these situations, get on your holy knees!

What dice do you roll for Divine Intervention?

Divine Intervention uses 2d10s, which together are called either a d100, percentile dice or a d%. One d10 has 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8 on one side and 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 on the other. Another d10 has 00, 20, 40, 60, and 80 on one side and 10, 30, 50, 70, and 90 on the other. 

Divine Intervention’s dice are a pair of dice:

  •  a d10 with double digits 00, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, and 90.
  •  a d10 with single digits 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.

The double-digit d10 is your tens column (00-90).

The single digit d10 is your ones column (0-9). 

You have to roll either a 00 or a 10 on the double-digit d10 for your Divine Intervention to succeed. If you are levels 0-9, you need to roll a 00 (because a 10 is above your level, disqualifying you). If you are levels 11-19, you can roll a 00 or a 10 on the double-digit d10.

There are other ways to roll a d100, too. If you’re wondering what a 0 00 is on a d100, it can be either a 10 or or a 100, depending on how you roll and read percentile dice.

Is Divine Intervention Stronger than Wish?

DnD’s Wish is similar to Divine Intervention, which often leads to a debate on which is best. Divine Intervention is much more general in its language, which makes it more powerful by default since it is less limited in what it can do. At the 20th level, however, Divine Intervention gains automatic success and becomes the most powerful ability in DnD 5e for any class.

Wish also has specific consequences for going outside of its basic use, while Divine Intervention doesn’t.

Here are some key differences between Divine Intervention 5e and Wish 5e:

  • Divine Intervention is a Cleric class feature carried out by a deity, while Wish is a spell cast by a mortal
  • Wish can be counterspelled, while Divine Intervention can’t
  • Divine Intervention can be used in an antimagic field, while Wish can’t
  • You can use Divine Intervention to cast Wish, while the reverse is not necessarily true 
  • Wish’s basic use is the duplication of any level 8 spell or lower, while Divine Intervention’s basic use is the effect of any Cleric spell or Cleric domain spell
  • Wish has 5 specific alternative uses, after which it requires a precise statement with your DM
  • Wish specifically states that the greater your request, the greater the chance something goes wrong
  • Divine Intervention depends on the temperament of the deity in question
  • Divine Intervention can’t be used for 7 days after success

Additionally, if you use Wish to “produce any effect other than duplicating another spell”:

  • Wish has a ⅓ chance of never working again
  • Each time you cast a spell until you finish a long rest, you take 1d10 necrotic damage per level of that spell
  • your Strength drops to 3, if it isn’t 3 or lower already, for 2d4 days

According to the Dungeon Master’s Guide, both Divine Intervention and Wish can end the hostility of a creature turned against you by the Deck of Many Things, or remove a Charm from a creature. 

Ultimately, both Divine Intervention and Wish depend heavily on DM judgment. Wish has specific consequences for going outside of its basic use, while Divine Intervention doesn’t. 

Neither Divine Intervention nor Wish are “do anything” abilities, but “do anything within reason that’s cool for the story” abilities. The DM has total discretion on how to grant your request. You can request anything for Divine Intervention or Wish, but it’s up to the DM to decide how to grant your request in a way that is fair and balanced and makes narrative sense. 

Dungeon Master’s Guide
$49.95 $27.97

Buy on Amazon Buy at Noble Knight
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
09/23/2023 11:30 am GMT

Divine Intervention 5e FAQs

What classes can use Divine Intervention?

Only Clerics can use Divine Intervention in DnD 5e. Clerics have the strongest connection to a personal deity of all the classes in DnD, and Divine Intervention is the prime example of this connection. Divine Intervention is the Cleric’s signature “capstone” ability at level 20, allowing Divine Intervention on a weekly basis.

Can you win with Divine Intervention?

You cannot win your entire DnD campaign with Divine Intervention, as that would be meta and outside the scope of the class feature. You can attempt Divine Interventions such as killing the main villain, but this will likely backfire or cause unanticipated butterfly effects. If your Divine Intervention request is unbalanced, the DM can balance it how they see fit.

Can you Divine Intervention yourself?

You can certainly use Divine Intervention for narrative purposes such as making someone fall in love with you, cosmetic purposes such as bigger muscles, or material purposes such as getting a cool weapon. But your deity may resent you for abusing your power in this way, or grant your request in a way you don’t imagine.

What are the benefits of Divine Intervention?

Divine Intervention’s benefits in 5e include: overcoming an insurmountable obstacle, avoiding death, healing your party, advancing the narrative, accessing forbidden areas, gaining wealth, defeating a foe, and more. The benefits of Divine Intervention are mitigated by the deity’s temperament, the DM’s discretion, and how great the need of the party is at the time.

Divine Intervention is the most powerful best 20th-level ability in the game, allowing free help from a deity once a week.

Can Divine Intervention revive?

Yes, Divine Intervention can revive a dead character. For such an act, the DM will likely impose a consequence or trial of some kind, such as a sacrifice of another kind or an unintended disfigurement upon revival. The deity in question may also require a favor for such an act of divine intervention.

Does Divine intervention work in an antimagic field?

Yes, Divine Intervention works in antimagic fields. Divine Intervention is not magic, but divine power wielded by a deity. Divine Intervention is not subject to any devices in DnD 5e that restrict magic.

How many times can you use Divine Intervention?

You can call on Divine Intervention as many times as you wish, but becoming a “god botherer” and spamming Divine Intervention all the time will have consequences. Not only will your deity likely extract vengeance upon you, so will your DM. Divine Intervention is only when your “need is great.” Using it at other times will be dicey.
You can use Divine Intervention once a week successfully.

Now that you’ve mastered holy rolling, check out other signature Class abilities like Lay on Hands 5e, Channel Divinity 5e, and Turn Undead 5e.