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D&D: Five of the Best 2nd Level Spells

4 Minute Read
Mar 15 2023

D&D features more than eighty 2nd-level spells, which is more than you could ever cast in a single game. Here are five of the best, though.

2nd-level spells are the single most confusing level of magic spells in D&D. They’re the first ones that make brand new D&D players go, “wait, what do you mean, I’m 2nd level now, why can’t I pick a 2nd-level spell?”

And learning the sad truth about D&D and how you don’t get 2nd-level spells until you hit 3rd level is a rite of passage that every new D&D player has to go through at some point. And now that there are more than 80 2nd level spells across the various D&D books out there (and that’s just counting the official ones), it can be hard to pick one. We’re here to help, with a look at some of the best 2nd-level spells in D&D.


Web is an underrated gem of a spell. It is absolutely massive, locking down a whole 20-foot cube for up to an hour. Any creature caught in the webbing, or that tries to enter them, has to make a saving throw or be restrained until it breaks free.

It takes a creature’s whole action to break free, and then only if they make a Strength check (not Athletics, and not a Strength saving throw, just a raw Strength check) against your spell save DC, which means that unless something’s really strong, once stuck, they will stay stuck.

Meaning you can lock down a whole wing of a fight with just a single 2nd-level spell slot.

Mirror Image

This is one of the best defensive spells out there. It’ll keep protecting you well past the point when enemies are easily hitting your AC.


Mirror Image creates illusory duplicates that can absorb up to three attacks on your behalf. Assuming you get hit in the first place. And the spell doesn’t take your concentration, so you can cast something like web.

Spiritual Weapon

Speaking of spells that don’t take your concentration, Spiritual Weapon is every Cleric’s best friend. At least for a little while. Because it creates a magical weapon that you can move and direct to attack as a bonus action, and which, again, doesn’t take your concentration. So you could have a spiritual weapon and mirror image going both at once.

Spike Growth

Spike Growth is one of those spells that doesn’t reveal how good it is until you really stop and think about it. It creates a 40-foot diameter area that turns into difficult terrain that automatically deals 2d4 points of piercing damage to a creature for every 5 feet it travels.

And because it’s not damage from an attack, it bypasses a lot of the protection out there for monsters and other types. The only downside is, it only works if the creature actually moves through it. But, combo that with a spell-like Fear, which makes creatures affected by it flee away from you by the most direct route available to them, and you’ve got a recipe to deal immense damage.

But even if you don’t, it still helps you reshape a single fight.


Pass Without Trace

Finally, Pass Without Trace, the bane of any DM who loves making people roll stealth checks. This spell grants the whole party magically good stealth, with a massive +10 bonus for those who you bestow the spell upon. And on top of that, creatures can’t be tracked except by magical means. There are no tracks or other traces of a creature’s passage.

So you can ghost in and out of places without anyone ever knowing that you were there.

What are your favorite 2nd-level spells?

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