Can you use Locate City to locate some other city than the one nearest to you? I'm trying to build a system of "blind" aerial navigation using 3.5e spells instead of the RL tools for this, and as per Brian's answer, it looks like Locate City provides 99% of the function of a VOR/DME. However, in reality, aircraft can tune multiple VOR stations, and use that functionality to navigate to waypoints that sit at the intersections of VOR radials. Can Locate City be used to locate that second city, or are you stuck with direction and distance to one city only? (Which is workable for finding your position, but is a bit more annoying for some purposes than having intersecting radials.)


1 Answer 1


No, but the caster has some control over what the word "nearest" means.

Locate City:

You sense the distance and direction to the nearest community of a minimum size designated by you at the time of casting. For instance, you could choose to find the nearest community at least as large as a village, or you could choose to locate only the nearest metropolis.

Therefore, you can filter by population and by maximum range.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Hint: You can use exponential and binary searches to minimize the number of required castings, instead of just picking population figures at random. Assuming no two cities have exactly the same population, you can fully map the world in an entirely reasonable number of days. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kevin
    Commented Jun 26, 2018 at 5:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kevin If there is a 1 million person city 1 km away, you cannot find a half million person city 2 km away through a cast of Locate City without first moving your location. So not quite the entire world, because Locate City cannot set a max size. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yakk
    Commented Jun 26, 2018 at 15:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Yakk: That's why you have an airship. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kevin
    Commented Jun 26, 2018 at 16:32

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