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Unearthed arcana presents variant wizard specialist classes and states that:

Each variant specialist class gives up one of the standard specialist’s class abilities in exchange for a new ability unique to the variant specialist. Each specialist class has three variants: one that replaces the specialist’s summon familiar ability, one that replaces the specialist’s bonus spells, and one that replaces the specialist’s bonus spell per day from the specialty school.

I see in the player handbook where a specialist gets a familiar, and where they get a bonus spell per day to cast from their specialty school, what I do not see is the third ability the "specialist bonus spells" what is this referring to?

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This appears to simply be a mistake in the header information in Unearthed Arcana. As you mention in the question, the introduction to the "Specialist Wizard Variants" section (SRD version) says each specialist subclass has three variants:

  • one that replaces the specialist’s summon familiar ability
  • one that replaces the specialist’s bonus spells
  • and one that replaces the specialist’s bonus spell per day from the specialty school

However, if you go in and look at the variants themselves, you can see that what the three variants for each specialist subclass actually do is:

  • replace the specialist’s summon familiar ability
  • replace the specialist’s bonus feats
  • replace the specialist’s bonus spell per day from the specialty school

For instance, the three Abjurer variants are:

Resistance to Energy (Su)

...An abjurer using this variant permanently gives up the ability to obtain a familiar.


Aura of Protection (Ex)

...An abjurer using this variant does not gain bonus feats for advancing as a wizard.


Spontaneous Dispelling (Ex)

...An abjurer using this variant does not gain additional spells per day for being a specialist wizard.


In other words, I think the section highlighted by the question is just a typo, and should instead read:

Each variant specialist class gives up one of the standard specialist’s class abilities in exchange for a new ability unique to the variant specialist. Each specialist class has three variants: one that replaces the specialist’s summon familiar ability, one that replaces the specialist’s bonus feats, and one that replaces the specialist’s bonus spell per day from the specialty school.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ how is that different from the bonus spells per day from the specialty school? There are three portions described 1. Familiar, 2. Bonus spells, 3. Bonus spells per day from specialty school \$\endgroup\$ – Critical Crafting Feb 9 '18 at 23:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Khaldhool Good call, I didn't catch that! I think this is actually a typo in Unearthed Arcana, and it's supposed to say "Bonus Feats." Editing to that effect. \$\endgroup\$ – A_S00 Feb 9 '18 at 23:32

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