Say you're a Pact of the Chain warlock, so you have a familiar with a CR of 1 or something. If you hit 17th level or find and pay a high-level mage to permanently turn your familiar into an Apprentice Wizard or LMoP's Evil Mage, could you give it a spellbook and have it learn/prepare different wizard spells, cast rituals, etc.?

What if you get it turned into an Acolyte, could you have it prepare any first-level cleric spell, like a regular cleric could?

This is probably a ridiculous question where the answer is "if you can get a 9th-level spell then does it even matter" but I'm curious if there are any rules that point one way or the other on this.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Sep 18, 2019 at 10:11

1 Answer 1


Yes and No.

True Polymorph is a powerful tool, but it does have limitations. One such limitation is that it is only able to transform something into a creature which has a Challenge Rating.

the new form can be any kind you choose whose challenge rating is equal to or less than the target's (or its level, if the target doesn't have a challenge rating)

Targets of the spell are thus limited to becoming creatures with stat blocks, such as those found in the Monster Manual. With that established, your questions can be answered like so:

Yes, a spellcasting monster can learn/prepare different spells.

The Monster Manual introduction (Special Traits > Spellcasting) states the following:

You can change the spells that a monster knows or has prepared, replacing any spell on a monster’s spell list with a different spell of the same level and from the same class list.

No, a spellcasting monster cannot cast spells as rituals.

The Player's Handbook (Spellcasting > Rituals) states:

To cast a spell as a ritual, a spellcaster must have a feature that grants the ability to do so.

There are no creature stat block traits (as far as I'm aware) which grant this feature, which means the rules as written prevent a monster from casting a spell as a ritual.

Of course, a DM is free to house rule the ability for certain monsters to be able to cast spells as a ritual, for the sake of verisimilitude. The Monster Manual even says that the traits in a stat block are only those which relate to combat or require some explanation, so the absence of a Ritual Caster trait might simply have been left off for not being combat-focused or complicated enough to merit inclusion.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .