I'm fighting a monster with "Damage resistances: Damage from spells"

Can the feat Elemental Adept overcome this damage resistance?.

For reference, I was using scorching ray with Elemental Adept (Fire) and I'm a draconic sorcerer.


3 Answers 3


Technically, "damage from spells" is not a "damage type", and so these rules don't seem to interact with each other at all.

From the Elemental Adept feat:

Spells you cast ignore resistance to damage of the chosen type.

Certain creatures, like wizards of the abjuration school, can gain resistance to all damage done by spells. Since this isn't a resistance to a damage type (they still take full damage from non-spell sources of every type), then Elemental Adept doesn't seem to affect this in any way.

But ultimately it's up to the DM.


It seems intended to work

As Apocolisp indicated in their post it is indeed up to the DM on how to interpret that rule. I can see it both ways but leaned to Elemental Adept working in your example.

That said, although JC's Tweets are not considered gospel truth anymore (and for somewhat good reason), it seems intended that should and would work.

As shown in this tweet it seems intended that it would bypass all resistance that would reduce the chosen type.

The intent is that Elemental Adept bypasses any resistance that would reduce the chosen damage type.


Yes, the Elemental Adept can overcome this damage resistance.

I've changed my mind about this since my previous answer.

Damage from spells is always of some type. What if we take resistance to "damage from spells" and just expand it slightly to be more explicit:

Resistances: All damage types, as long as the source of the damage is a spell.

So if the Elemental Adept is casting a spell that causes damage, then the creature is resistant to that damage no matter what type it is. Ergo, the resistance can be ignored as long as the damage is of the chosen type.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I think you were right the first time - you have to pick one of several types, like "fire". then "Spells you cast ignore resistance to damage of the chosen type" - you can't pick "spells" as the type, so you specifically ignore "fire resistance", not resistance to "damage from spells" \$\endgroup\$
    – Tal
    Commented Jan 14, 2022 at 16:39
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ But "damage from spells" includes "fire damage from spells", which the Elemental Adept surely can ignore. \$\endgroup\$
    – Apocalisp
    Commented Jan 14, 2022 at 16:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Damage from spells and damage from fire are two different things. And I think the best way to illustrate that is by pointing out that the aura doesn't stop fire damage from a torch the way it does a conjured flame. So the damage resistance from the aura would supersede Elemental Adept simply because it's the spell itself being resisted, not the fire damage. The fire damage is a consequence of the spell, the spell is the trigger for the aura. The damage type is irrelevant to the aura. That's my reading of the conundrum you're facing. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 1, 2022 at 19:14

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