How can I use one casting of vampiric touch more often?

As far as I understand it, vampiric touch does the following:

  1. Casting the spell takes an action (leaving the caster a bonus action, a reaction and a move left to do in no particular order)

  2. For the duration of said minute (10 rounds) one has a chance to apply 3d6 necrotic damage and heal 1/2 of that, up to ten times via "melee spell attack".

How could I acquire more "melee spell attacks" per round?

Rangers', Fighters', Paladins' and Bards' (College of Valor) Extra Attack doesn't qualify and neither do Monks' Flurry of Blows, because none are "melee spell attacks". Even the spell haste won't work and that is practically a minute-long use of Action Surge.

  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Just a note on phrasing: There is no such thing as a "move action". You just move. You can move before and/or after various actions, and sometimes during actions. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 30, 2017 at 1:03
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @GreenstoneWalker We are thinking along the same lines, reading that. I think it's time to finally put that misconception to bed, Q&A style, and make a convenient link we can use next time: Is there such thing as a move action? :) \$\endgroup\$ Mar 30, 2017 at 1:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Fine, I fixed it for you. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 11, 2018 at 1:46

2 Answers 2


On the first turn, Quicken Spell will let you attack twice with it. By casting it as a bonus action (which includes attacking with it), you can free up your action, allowing you to attack with it again.

Other than that, the Fighter's Action Surge ability is your only option here.

Until the spell ends, you can make the attack again on each of your turns as an action.

While there are various methods of speeding up the casting of a spell, Vampiric Touch gives you an extra use for your action. As such, only abilities that let you make multiple actions, not multiple attacks, can help you use it more than once. The fact that it involves a melee spell attack is unimportant.

As you've said, Haste won't work, since it specifies what actions can be used with its extra action. Time Stop won't work either (well, it will let you use Vampiric Touch on yourself, if that was a thing you wanted to do). Action Surge is the only ability that will give you an extra action with no restrictions.

Note that even with Action Surge, using it more than once in a turn is still potentially shaky. It says you can make the attack again on "each of your turns", which could be taken to imply that you can only use it once on each turn.

  • \$\begingroup\$ For interest's sake, more stuff that doesn't work: Twinned Spell, Find Steed. One option that works but the question disqualifies: Simulacrum. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Mar 30, 2017 at 1:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ This makes me miss some aspects of D&D 3.5 cause if you go monk with flurry of blows with VT you'd trigger the affects pet hit for the duration of the spell. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 9, 2017 at 4:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ @JhyarelleSilver In 3.5 VT is instantaneous and only works once. \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Apr 9, 2017 at 4:33

If you multiclass monk with a spell-caster you can use unarmed strikes to "Touch" the enemy, which does the vampiric touch effect. The "Make a melee spell attack" is, I think, is for the benefit of spell casters, who often times do not have the right proficiency to make unarmed strikes effectivley, thus rendering the spell almost useless to most regular spell casters. Once again the spell clearly states that

"The touch of your shadow-wreathed hands can siphon the life force from others to heal your wounds."

Meaning touching your hand to something causes the spells effect to activate, and unlike shocking grasp, it lasts a minute instead of an instant. This allows you to be a little creative. Note: It's up to your DM to let you do this, though its not that game breaking, it still may not settle well with your DM.

  • \$\begingroup\$ By RAW, unarmed strikes and spell attacks have nothing to do with one another. You can't cast a spell by making an unarmed strike, or vice versa. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Mar 13, 2018 at 5:15

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