I need help understanding how the Spell Points variant rule (DMG, p. 288-289) works with a sorcerer using Metamagic.

I had all my sorcery points and spell slots in spell points, but I just turned level 3, which opens the way for Metamagic options.

Can spell points be used directly for Metamagic? Or do I have to convert the spell points to sorcery points?

The Q&A What is the conversion rate for Sorcery Points to Spell Points? confused me a bit, because spell points are not spell slots but are considered to be so?

The Font of Magic feature says, in the "Converting a Spell Slot to Sorcery Points" section:

As a bonus action on your turn, you can expend one spell slot and gain a number of sorcery points equal to the slot's level.

So since I'm level 3, my highest-level spell slot is a 2nd-level spell slot (which costs 3 sorcery points). Does that mean I need to use a bonus action to convert 3 spell points into 3 sorcery points (my maximum spell slot equivalent in points)? Or I can turn any number up to my maximum sorcery point limit (later levels)?

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    \$\begingroup\$ The word still in that other answer is referring to the fact that the spell point system doesn't change when hitting level 19. At 18 they have one 6th level slot, and at 19 they still have only one. That part of your question is better as a comment though, so I've removed it \$\endgroup\$ Aug 5, 2021 at 5:26

1 Answer 1


The only thing you can do with spell points is create spell slots

Because all the standard spellcasting rules revolve around spell slots, the way spell points work is that you use them to create spell slots, and then you use those spell slots for whatever you would normally use them for:

You expend a number of spell points to create a spell slot of a given level, and then use that slot to cast a spell.

Other than this, there is nothing else you can do with spell points. They can't be used to directly power metamagic or anything else. The only thing they can do is create spell slots. The above passage only talks about casting spells by creating spell slots, but we can infer that any other feature powered by spell slots will work in the same way: first, you expend spell points to create a spell slot, and then you use that spell slot as described in the feature. (Note that converting spell points to a spell slot does not require any action. It happens as part of the same action that expends the created spell slot.)

Sorcerers can convert spell points to spell slots to sorcery points (at a loss)

So, as a level 3 sorcerer with spell points, you can create either 1st or 2nd level spell slots with those spell points. If you want to convert spell points to sorcery points, you must do so by creating a spell slot and then converting that spell slot to sorcery points as a bonus action. For example, you could expend 3 spell points to create a 2nd level spell slot and then convert that spell slot to 2 sorcery points. The end result is that you convert 3 spell points to 2 sorcery points, via a 2nd level spell slot that exists only as a transient intermediate state. Note that using a different spell slot level results in a different "efficiency" of conversion. For example, the 2nd level slot example here gives a 67% efficiency, while doing the same thing with a 1st level slot gives only a 50% efficiency, exchanging 2 spell points for 1 sorcery point. From what I can see, the slot levels that yield the most efficient conversions are:

  • 8th level, at 72% efficiency (but this is likely a poor use of your single daily 8th-level slot)
  • 5th level, at 71% efficiency (and no daily limit on the number of slots)

On the other hand, sorcery points can be converted into spell slots at the same rate as spell points. So sorcery points can sort of "substitute" for spell points one for one, but not the other way around. Regardless, you probably don't want to make spell slots from your sorcery points most of the time, because this will leave you with fewer sorcery points to use with metamagic and other unique sorcerer abilities. If you run out of sorcery points and want to continue using metamagic, you will be forced to convert spell points to sorcery points at a loss as described above.

  • \$\begingroup\$ OK @Ryan C. Thompso. So for Maximum efficiency I should just keep all my daily starting sorcery points instead of converting them, converting them in spell points (spell slots that becomes spell points) is 1:1 value. But as you point out doing the opposite (spell points in spell slots--->sorcery point) is more taxing. So using only the starting sorcery points as either metamagic or spell points is the best thing to do not the opposite. Can you add what I just wrote (in a better summarized way) in your answer please? I consider it to be complete if you add this. (as a sidenote perhaps) \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Aug 5, 2021 at 17:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ If I make an example of my claim is that if you start your day as lvl 3 with 14 spell points and 3 sorcery points. If you convert your 3 sorcery points in a lvl 2 slot wich will give you 3 spell points. However if you would convert back those 3 points you just gained again into sorcery point again it will cost me a spell slot lvl 2 (3 spell points) to get only 2 Sorcery points. Thank you so much for opening my eyes on this! \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Aug 5, 2021 at 17:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MaximeCuillerier You can't convert sorcery points or spell slots into spell points. The conversion from spell points to spell slots is one-way. You can convert sorcery points into spell slots, but those spell slots just remain as spell slots; they don't become spell points. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 5, 2021 at 18:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ ok so the rule means that spell slots are replaced by spell points (wich means that spell slots can’t exist in permanent state I guess to convert). so what you’re telling me is if I want spell points from my sorcery points is impossible it will just give me a spell on the fly that’s it. So the newly acquired “spell slot” from spell points or sorcery points is actually a spell that’s being casted right now. So spell points (equivalent to slot) can become sorcery points or cast a spell. And sorcery point can just be used to cast a spell right away or metamagic. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpire
    Aug 6, 2021 at 15:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MaximeCuillerier Spell slots created from spell points are "transient", in the sense that they are created when they are needed and then immediately used. However, spell slots from other sources actually can still exist and be "stored". For example, a spell slot created from sorcery points lasts until either you use it, or until your next long rest. So if you created a spell slot from sorcery points, you would now have a spell slot and some spell points. It actually gets kind of complicated. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 6, 2021 at 16:08

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