D&D: Six Spells Perfect For A Wintry Wonderland
Oh the weather outside is frightful, but with these spells, it’s positively delightful. Roll up to your next holiday game as a wizard of winter.
Winter-themed wizards get a bad rap. Sure, the White Witch of Narnia sought to ensnare the whole world in a cage of neverending winter, and corrupted children with Turkish Delights (though, admittedly, if a child loves Turkish Delights, they’re probably not the best of kids in the first place have you tried them?), but she was also a powerful sorceress and the Queen and last surviving resident of a dead world.
Sure, the Ice King is kind of a jerk who spends too much time hanging around with evil penguins, but he’s also a scientist who was devoted to trying to save the world from a nuclear disaster and slowly lost his personality due to the influence of magic, and finds himself trying to protect his dearest friend even if he doesn’t understand why.
Sure, the Wizards in Winter House caused a ton of traffic problems, but i mean just look at it.
The point is, there’s a lot to be gained from playing a snowy spellcaster–especially if you’re tackling the latest adventure, Rime of the Frostmaiden. You can span the spectrum from silly to dark (often in the same character) and with these spells, everyone will agree your character is “cool.” Here are five spells that belong to any fledgling Felwinter.
Let’s start with the big one. Freezing sphere is an iconic spell for a cold winter–it’s a globe of cold that deals massive amounts of cold damage and freezes water solid, trapping creatures that happen to be in it in a block of ice. But what’s more, you can hold the spell, keeping it with you for a minute before the globe detonates. For best results, combine this with a Watery Sphere spell and trap your enemies in a frigid prison of your own making. Freezing Sphere isn’t a concentration spell, so you can.
This is the cold damage cantrip less-chosen. It’s hard to compete with Fire Bolt, but Frostbite has a lot going for it if you’re looking to be a controlling caster. In addition do dealing 1d6, it also inflicts disadvantage on its targets next weapon attack roll. So you can debuff and damage your foes at-will. Eat your heart out Ray of Frost.
Investiture Of Ice
This is a big frosty transformation. When you want to prove to your friends that you embody the elements, Investiture of Ice is there for you. Your whole body becomes infused with ice and you gain a number of winter powers:
- You are immune to cold damage and have resistance to fire damage.
- You can move across difficult terrain created by ice or snow without spending extra movement.
- The ground in a 10-foot radius around you is icy and is difficult terrain for creatures other than you. The radius moves with you.
- You can use your action to create a 15-foot cone of freezing wind extending from your outstretched hand in a direction you choose. Each creature in the cone must make a Constitution saving throw. A creature takes 4d6 cold damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. A creature that fails its save against this effect has its speed halved until the start of your next turn.
Essentially, you can become an ice-powered superhero for up to 10 minutes a casting.
This spell isn’t an attack spell, but it lets your character call even the most extreme environments home–you succeed on all saves you’d take from being in a hot or cold weather environment, and find it quite comfortable. And as the spell lasts 8 hours (and is a ritual) it’s a must add for any cold caster that has access to it.
This is a new spell taken straight out of Rime of the Frostmaiden. It’s somewhere between Burning Hands and Thunderwave–you blast a 15-foot cone of freezing cold from your fingertips, and deal cold damage to all caught up by it. It also freezes nonmagical liquids in the area that aren’t being carried or “worn.”
I’d ask how one “wears” a liquid, but, I’ve seen me with a bowl of soup. At any rate, this spell is 1st-level, meaning if you want to do more than Frostbite/Ray of Frost out of the gate, you’ve got options!
Cone of Cold
Of course, no list would be complete without a mention of Cone of Cold. This is perhaps the most iconic of the winter-themed spells in D&D. It’s one of the few spells that made the leap from the pages of the Player’s Handbook to the wider world. You can find a Cone of Cold in Dragon Age, World of Warcraft, and its associated properties, and beyond. There’s just something satisfying about a cone of freezing cold that can potentially stop your enemies in their tracks.
What’s your favorite cold spell? Let us know in the comments!