I don't take credit for this spell which I found on DMsGuild, but I am wondering if it is balanced:

Prescient Sense

4th-level divination

Casting Time: 1 action
Components: V, S
Range: Self
Duration: 1 hour

You extend your senses to perceive the near future. For the duration, you gain the following benefits:

  • You have advantage on Wisdom checks and initiative checks

  • Once per round, then you hit a creature that has not acted yet in this combat with an attack roll, you deal an extra 1d8 damage of the same type as the attack.

  • If you are surprised, this spell immediately ends and you lose the surprised condition.

  • If you are attacked, you can use your reaction to end this spell and give yourself +5 AC, including against the triggering spell, until the beginning of your next turn.

  • If you roll a Dexterity save, you can use your reaction to end this spell and give yourself advantage on the roll and all other Dexterity saves until the beginning of your next turn.

The spell would be available to wizards at the least.

Is this balanced against other spells of its level? Are there any other balance concerns I have missed?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ What DMsGuild product was this spell found in? (It seems to have been published in several different products by Jeremy Forbing; this seems to be the earliest.) Also, by "is this balanced", are you asking whether it's balanced against other official spells of the same level? \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Jun 21, 2019 at 21:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @someome_evil wizard certainly, then it depends on my DM. \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Jun 21, 2019 at 22:39

2 Answers 2


Close, but not quite balanced.

Firstly, as with almost any spell you can end at will, this should be a concentration spell. I don't have my PHB in front of me, but the spells that you can choose to end tend to be concentration spells, and this spells has the feel of one you would need to concentrate on.

Secondly, I don't see where the 1d8 extra damage comes from. The arbitrary feel of '1d8 extra damage to creature that hasn't done anything yet' seems just out of character for divination spells, which tend more toward advantage/disadvantage rather than actual damage. I would get rid of the 1d8 damage.

(Note, Hunter's Mark and Mind Spike do deal damage, but both are engaged at one specific creature at a time, and are edge cases, set to 'deal damage and find the thing'.)

Thirdly, I would ratchet it down to a 3rd-level spell, possibly 2nd. While this seems powerful, the need to take out the damage and make it concentration make it feel vastly underpowered for a 4th-level spell, and along the lines of a 3rd.

This is just one man's opinion, but that's how I would tweak it if I wanted to try and play it in my game, as a Wizard player who often chooses to be a diviner.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Check Bestow Curse, it is 3rd level with concentration, 5th without. \$\endgroup\$
    – András
    Jun 22, 2019 at 9:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ Also, while spells with concentration can be ended any time, concentration is in no way a requirement for endable spells. \$\endgroup\$
    – András
    Jun 22, 2019 at 9:45
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ While it is okay for you to dislike the damage provided by the spell, that is a matter of design not balance. You are free to include such things, but you should address them appropriately. There is no "need to take out the damage", but there is your desire to do so. I also think you can improve this by (trying to) compare this to other spells (for why it is X level). \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jun 22, 2019 at 11:13

Quite underpowered

  • Two of the benefits this spell grants, the advantage on initiative and the extra damage to creature that haven't acted yet, are very similar to first level Revised Ranger features.
  • 1d8 is very low damage for a 4th level spell, especially since a wizard will probably only get to use it once per combat. Also, the "once per round" is unnecessary, as by definition every creature will have had its turn after the first round of combat. It does prevent the extra damage from applying to AOE spells, but this is also unnecessary for such low damage and high level.
  • So if a giant rat jumps out at you you lose a 4th level spell with no save? That is very harsh.
  • Why would a character want to end a 4th level spell to gain the same benefits of the first level spell Shield?

Suggested revision: For the duration you gain the following benefits:

  • You have advantage on initiative rolls and cannot be surprised.
  • Your AC increases by 2.
  • When you make a dexterity saving throw, you take no damage on a successful saving throw and half damage on a failure.

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