Word of Recall states:

Word of recall teleports you instantly back to your sanctuary when the word is uttered. You must designate the sanctuary when you prepare the spell, and it must be a very familiar place.

How exactly is the sanctuary designated? Can I designate the sanctuary whenever I prepare the spell (potentially a new location every day)? Having gained a level (and the ability to cast it) while in this dungeon, can I designate a sanctuary outside and port out, only to port back in the next day (since I am familiar with where I just left)?

I feel like this is basically the same as teleport, only without the chance of failure and requiring more familiarity in destination.


1 Answer 1


It's pretty much just like you said

Except more familiarity in this case means being very familiar, an actual game term defined in the description of the spell teleport, which says that

“Very familiar” is a place where you have been very often and where you feel at home.

Emphasis mine. So go ahead and pick anywhere that's very familiar. But it's perfectly reasonable for the GM to bar you from preparing the spell word of recall to transport you back to, for example, that prison cell in the evil overlord's dungeon or that brothel where you spent the night a couple of times. (You know, unless you actually felt at home in either place.)

Also note that word of recall is a higher-level spell than the spell teleport, so the spell's allowed to be pretty good.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Well, I got to know that prison cell pretty well, and the brothel was really good... It'd be nice if they defined "very familiar" in the spell desc. or at least referred to teleport, instead of leaving it out there. \$\endgroup\$
    – GreySage
    Aug 11, 2015 at 19:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GreySage Agreed; not much is saved by omitting the teleport reference. An Aside: The spell word of recall is a legacy spell dating back to at least Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, and I've never found it particularly useful, but scrolls of the spell found on the bodies of minions are good adventure hooks. (Not as cool as refuge cookies, but still.) \$\endgroup\$ Aug 11, 2015 at 19:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan The spell's origin is Greyhawk (Supp 1 OD&D). " ... Cleric must designate the sanctuary to which he will be recalled when the spell is uttered. The Recall acts similarly to a Teleportation spell, but there is no chance of failure, and it takes only the Cleric back, and only to his Sanctuary. Note that the Sanctuary may not be changed at will, but if circumstances force a change it can be allowed. The 1e version added the ability to bring other folks/stuff with him, as the PF one does. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 11, 2015 at 20:08

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