At level 4, Berric the cleric takes Channel Smite. He then attacks someone, expending a Harm spell. From the text:

Make a melee Strike and add the spell’s damage to the Strike’s damage.

Does this mean that the basic Fortitude save mentioned in the text for Harm simply isn't used? If Berric used a first level spell slot, which of the two possibilities below is the case when he strikes and hits?

  1. He strikes, dealing his normal weapon damage and then simply adding another 1d8.
  2. He strikes, dealing his normal weapon damage. The enemy takes 1d8 damage, but rolls a basic Fortitude save: it takes none of that 1d8 damage on a critical success, half damage on a success, full damage on a failure and double damage on a critical failure.

I think it's the first, because the text for Channel Smite doesn't mention any saving throw, but I'd just like to confirm...


Looks like option 1. Channel Smite doesn't say anything about a save, simply add the expended spell's damage to your melee strike. To be fair, it's a two-action attack that also costs a spell, and you lose your chance for the target to critically fail the save, so it's not "unbalanced", just adds some reliability (and fitting flavor) to divine melee combat.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ The spell is also expended regardless of if you hit or not, so you are gambling on all or nothing vs. allowing a Basic Save which should normally do half to full damage. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ifusaso
    Jan 13 at 16:13
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Further supporting your case; Option 2 is no different then attacking and casting a one action Harm separately. Option 1 is clearly what is intended. \$\endgroup\$
    – ESCE
    Jan 13 at 16:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ESCE yeah that's a really good point, thanks \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben R.
    Jan 14 at 8:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do not forget the opportunity cost of the feat itself. At the end of the day, this is a very weak feat. \$\endgroup\$
    – András
    Jan 15 at 13:02

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