The bard class feature Magical Secrets says:

By 10th level, you have plundered magical knowledge from a wide spectrum of disciplines. Choose two spells from any classes, including this one. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.

The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known column of the Bard table.

You learn two additional spells from any classes at 14th level and again at 18th level."

You can choose any number of spells as long as they are available. Does this mean if I pick a high level bard, or just don't pick a magical secret spell at 10th level, can I use that say level 10 feature to pick a higher level spell from another class?

This is of course taking into account if you are allowed to wait to take the secrets by the DM.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to the stack Morthanal, take the tour when you have a moment. I've closed this as a duplicate, as it seems this question has been asked before. Let us know if the linked Q&A does not solve your problem. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 17, 2022 at 18:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ its not been asked before, the linked Q&A is about waiting. This is about creating a high level character or if your allowed to wait \$\endgroup\$
    – Morthanal
    Commented May 17, 2022 at 19:17

2 Answers 2


I think the key problem is; how are you creating a high-level bard?

Every DM I've played with, and myself included, would say that you would create the character by going through the motions of leveling up to reach whatever the goal is.

So build a level 1 bard, fully fleshed out, then make them level 2 and do all the upgrades. Repeat every level until you reach the desired level.

If you don't level up normally, you can create impossible situations

For instance, at 10th level bard knows 14 spells (including two secrets). If you just created them at 10th level they could have all 14 spells be 5th level. Stupid, as you only have two 5th-level spell slots, but it makes a point.

During natural progression, you'd have to have a mix of 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th. Here is a great question and answer about how many spells of each level are possible. It's asking about a sorcerer, but a bard progresses similarly.

So by saying your bard is suddenly level X, and now you can pick and choose based on essentially "always" being at that level you break some fundamental rules of the game.

Does that make it "wrong"? No, but your DM gets to make the choice of what is and is not allowed.

So as far as Magical Secrets go...

To my way of thinking, you should pick them as if you're at the level you gained the feature, not as if you are in your final form.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks! im currently the dm, and i wanted to double check before creating a bardidan npc, your input is apprecaited and hes taken it as if he leveled regularly \$\endgroup\$
    – Morthanal
    Commented May 18, 2022 at 23:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Morthanal, you're welcome. If you think this is the correct way to go, feel free to give it a checkmark. \$\endgroup\$
    – MivaScott
    Commented May 20, 2022 at 16:24

If your DM is already using a house rule, then you will have to ask your DM.

You wrote:

this is of course taking into account if you are allowed to wait to take the secrets by the dm

As outlined in this Q&A, this ruling is contrary to the rules-as-written (Magical Secrets selections must be made immediately), so it constitutes a house rule of sorts. If your DM is using a house rule about how the Magical Secrets feature works, you will have to ask them which spells are available for choosing for each Magical Secrets feature you have.

In contrast, assuming that for each level you receive Magical Secrets you may not wait to make your Magical Secrets selection, then when creating a high level bard you select from the spells that would have been available at that level, because you have to create the character as though they progressed to the level they start at. This is the rules-as-written approach, but if you're using house rules, you need house rules solutions.


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