Sacred Flame Spell 5e DnD

Sacred Flame 5e Spell

A goblin snickers, confident in her hiding spot. Nothing will be able to hit her when she’s cleverly concealed behind a convenient log, right? Wrong! A burst of radiant energy comes through the log, and she’s unable to dodge in time.

Sacred Flame to the rescue!

What is Sacred Flame Spell?

The spell’s text from the Basic Rules reads: “Flame-like radiance descends on a creature that you can see within range. The target must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw or take 1d8 radiant damage. The target gains no benefit from cover for this saving throw. The spell’s damage increases by 1d8 when you reach 5th level (2d8), 11th level (3d8), and 17th level (4d8).”

Sacred Flame 5e Stats

Casting Time1 Action
Range/Area60 ft
ComponentsVerbal, Somatic
Duration Instantaneous

How Does Sacred Flame 5e Work?

Cover and its benefits (or lack thereof) are the only complicated aspect of Sacred Flame. While the text points out that cover doesn’t benefit the creature, you need to remember the cover rules. With half cover, a creature gains +2 to its Dexterity saving throws. Three-quarters cover grants a +5 bonus. Creatures with total cover simply can’t be targeted by regular spells or attacks. 

Is Sacred Flame a Good Spell?

Sacred Flame is okay, but it’s not necessarily a good spell. Radiant damage is nice because it is more rarely resisted than elemental damage types, but that’s almost the only good thing about it. How cover works in D&D is somewhat contested by DMs, specifically regarding total cover.

The wording of the spell states that targets don’t benefit at all from cover, meaning that you should be able to subject them to this spell’s effects. However, the text also states that you must see the creature you intend to target. The wording for total cover says that someone with total cover is entirely obscured by an obstacle. 

If a creature is wholly obscured to you and therefore has total cover from you, it wouldn’t be visible to you. In this case, you can’t use sacred flame. We strongly advise discussing the rules of cover and visibility with your DM before committing one of your precious cantrips to Sacred Flame.

Which Classes Can Use Sacred Flame?

Sacred Flame is on the Cleric spell list, so it is available to Clerics and Divine Soul Sorcerers. Other classes can get Sacred Flame through certain feats, such as Magic Initiate, and Bards can obtain it through their Magical Secrets features. 

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