This section explains the game rules for spells and how to read the description of a spell. For info on casting spells, see Casting Spells.


This is how far from you the spell can reach when youcast it.


This is how long a spell remains in effect. The duration is usually a number of rounds, minutes, or hours. Some spells have a duration of “instantaneous,” which means they happen right when you cast them and then the magic stops, like the burst of flame from a burning hands spell.


This is the long description of what the spell does, who it targets, and how it interacts with other rules. If the spell allows creatures to resist it with a saving throw, the spell description says so here, and tells you what kind of save (Fort, Ref, or Will), as well as how to figure out what the saving throw DC for the spell is. Some spells affect a burst, a cone, or a line. See the diagram for examples of how to draw these on a map grid.



A burst is a sphere, but you draw it on the map as a rough circle. When you cast a burst effect, choose the corner of a square on the map to be the center of the burst. Any creature in the area is affected, and creatures outside the area are safe.


A cone spell is like a burst, except it only makes a quarter-circle pointing away from you.


A line-shaped spell shoots away from you in a straight line in the direction chosen by you. Choose a corner of your square and draw a line from there to the limit of the spell range or until it strikes a solid barrier. Line spells aren’t blocked by creatures, so you can hit multiple creatures with a line spell (like lightning bolt). If the line passes through a square, it affects creatures in that square.