For a new campaign, I made a half-elf kid, abducted by a demon who changed his magic origin from a Draconic Bloodline (for cold damage) into a Shadow Magic (from Xanathar's Guide to Everything).

At start I used the Draconic Bloodline only for the character's background, and chose only Shadow Magic features, but is there an "approved" way to mix the features of different sorcerous origins?

I mean, for all sorcerous origins, at Levels 1, 6, 14 and 18 the character receives a new feature. At those levels, could I choose from one sorcerous origin or another? Would this still be balanced?

Something like this:
At level 6, could I get the Hound of Ill Omen feature from Shadow Magic, and at level 14, could I then get the Dragon Wings feature from Draconic Bloodline?


1 Answer 1


Generally balanced, but you could exploit it

For most cases choosing a feature from a different origin won't cause balance issues. The features don't usually interact too strongly and are fairly well balanced against each other.

There are a few issues that you need to look at though:

  1. You can't do this. By RAW, there is no way you are allowed to do this. You will need your DM to allow it under a house rule and definitely cannot use it in organised play. There is no 'approved' or official way to do this. The closest advice we have is this article on modifying classes.

  2. Don't power game it. It is possible that there is some combination of origin features that will be un-balanced. From my analysis of the PHB and Xanathar's origins I can't find an example of this, but that doesn't mean there isn't one.

  3. The thematics don't work. Sorcererous origin's build on a single theme and all the feature tie into that in some way. You will need to work on your character concept to explain how they are both a draconic and a shadow sorcerer.

  4. Some feature rely on the earlier level feature. The 14th-level Controlled Chaos feature from the Wild Magic origin relies on the fact you have the first level feature Wild Magic Surge. You will need to pre-plan which features you take to ensure you have the prerequisites.

The specific features you mention, Hound of Ill Omen from Shadow Magic and Dragon Wings from Draconic Bloodline, have no interaction and are balanced against the other options from their respective origins. There should be no balance issues from swapping these out if your DM allows it.


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