[Top 15] D&D Best Utility Spells That Are Awesome

Sometimes the best defense is an overwhelming offense


Utility spells. Flexibility and finesse over sheer destructive force or impenetrable defense. These utility spells often fly under the radar but are of paramount importance to a caster’s growth and survival as they stretch the limits of what is possible and expand the versatility of the caster’s repertoire. These are necessities and can help the caster make fast friends with a party by reducing time needed to travel somewhere or finding an answer to an important question almost instantaneously.

15. Detect Magic (Wizard spell lv 1)

15 best utility spells dnd

A great spell to determine what’s in the area, this spell is a staple of wizards everywhere and is amongst the first magical spells that all wizards learn. A wizard that can’t detect magic, isn’t going to get very far in their career. 

  • Detects magical radiation in an area 
  • Determines the strength of the magic in the area
  • % chance to know what school of magic the magic in question is

14. Identify (Wizard spell lv 1)

15 best utility spells dnd

Sure would be great to know what that new magic sword the party found can actually do. With the casting of this spell, now you can know. More importantly, the warrior swinging the sword can know. If you can look beyond the component cost, this spell will become a fast friend in the discovery of magical items and their effects.

  • Deciphers the power and uses of magical items
  • Becomes a more useful spell as the wizard/caster advances in power
  • More powerful wizards can identify more items with greater accuracy in a single casting

13. Invisibility (Wizard spell lv 2)

15 best utility spells dnd

Not being found is always a good plan for soft squishy classes and with this spell the wizard adds a substantial level of protection to them or to someone else. It allows one to go unobserved while looting, scouting or in the beginning phases of an ambush. What’s not to like?

  • Basically like wearing the one ring, minus the nazgul
  • Spell only ends after an offensive action is taken, dispelled via other magic, or after 24 hours

12. Rope Trick (Wizard spell lv 2)

15 best utility spells dnd

The poor man’s levitate or Leomund’s hut, this spell allows the caster to take a short rest from the trevails of adventuring. It can also allow some measure of safety or allow a party to reach a place that is too difficult to climb up to otherwise.

  • Stay in shelter until the danger has passed you by.
  • Gather your wits for at least an hour

11. Fly (Wizard spell lv 3)

15 best utility spells dnd

Traverse terrain that would normally be difficult or impossible to travel. Reach places you couldn’t before and fight enemies from new and unusual positions to give you the edge. This spell is a game changer and can drastically alter how challenges are approached. 

  • By the time a wizard can cast this, they are guaranteed at least an hour of flight time
  • Good to get out of a tight spot
  • Can overcome travel constraints

10. Tongues (Wizard spell lv 3)

15 best utility spells dnd

Never run afoul language barriers ever again. No more being scammed because you don’t know the regional dialect or the local language. Never again have to suffer being insulted in another tongue.

  • Incredibly useful if common is the only language you know
  • Great on the spot spell for when you want to impress

9. Polymorph Self (Wizard spell lv 4)

15 best utility spells dnd

A great problem-solving spell. Need to fly over a chasm, bird form. Need to breathe underwater or do combat in the ocean, shark form. Somebody abusing you physically? Ape form. So many combinations make this spell especially potent and worth having in the arsenal.

  • A skeleton key for problems
  • Ensures you always have a way to fight and a way to escape

8. Contact other plane (Wizard spell lv 5)

15 best utility spells dnd

For when the party is really stumped and can’t uncover any clues, pull this spell out of your back pocket. It allows a wizard to shift their mind across the planes temporarily and consort with the powers that be there.

  • A dangerous but rewarding spell
  • Guard your sanity, some places weren’t meant to be visited by a naked mind

7. Plane Shift (Priest spell lv 5)

15 best utility spells dnd

Allows for planular travel. When you want to traverse the multiverse but don’t have time to seek out an amulet of the planes, this spell is for you. 

  • Send yourself or up to 8 people (including yourself) to a different plane of existence
  • Be rid of a problem by touching them and sending them to the plane of fire

6. Teleport (Wizard spell lv 5)

15 best utility spells dnd

Never burden yourself with overland travel ever again. Dimension door is the poor man’s teleport and you are not a poor wizard. Just make sure you are very familiar with the places you are teleporting to. Going to places you only have a passing knowledge of can be… dangerous.

  • Travel in style.. Horses are for squares
  • Try not to splinch yourself into the ground. 

5. Contingency (Wizard spell lv 6)

15 best utility spells dnd

For those times you are caught unprepared, have this little spell lend you a helping hand. Whether it is allowing you to fly in the event of a fall, rendering physical shielding against harm, or leaving the problem entirely, this is a spell for planners everywhere.

  • As a wizard, you should always be prepared.
  • More powerful wizards can prepare more complicated conditions and spell effects.

4. Enchant an Item (Wizard spell lv 6)

15 best utility spells dnd

Create magical items. Wands, scrolls, even some rods and staffs can be crafted with this spell, however without its friend permanency, some of the greatest magics are still beyond reach. However, this is the foot in the door for all magical item creation.

  • Become your party’s best friend with item crafting
  • With enough time and patience, you can research your way to that staff you always wanted.

3.  True Seeing  (Wizard spell lv 6/ priest spell lv 5)

15 best utility spells dnd

See things as they are meant to be seen. No more being fooled by lesser illusions or invisible creatures. Stop stumbling about in search of secret doors, and bring your vision into the next dimension. Literally, look into the ethereal plane.

  • A must have for dungeon delving and problem solving
  • Stop missing secret loot

2. Binding (Wizard spell lv 8)

15 best utility spells dnd

Bind creatures from other planes, making for excellent guardians of your lair. One can also use this spell as a powerful persuasive component in demanding a creature's services. Nothing is more impressive than having several elementals bound to your service and guarding the halls of your great tower.

  • Allows you to become the next villain of an adventure. Now adventurers raid your tower for loot
  • Limited only by the imagination of the caster in terms of what can be bound

1. Wish (Wizard spell lv 9)

15 best utility spells dnd

The fabled wish spell. What can and can’t be accomplished with this spell is completely up to the caster and the powers that be (read Dungeon Master.). Any problem can potentially be solved or at least heavily unraveled with this spell in mind. However, great caution must be exercised when twisting the fabric of reality. Mere mortals were never meant to have this sort of power. 

  • Temporarily feel like a deity
  • Discover the answers to questions that have plagued you since the beginning of your career.
  • Finally discover why the chicken crossed the road…

 

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Having found himself in a dilemma once again; Stephen is stuck on the character creation screen. Does he wiel the greatsword, or does he become the realm's greatest caster? We may never know.
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