There are many weapons available in the D&D universe. There are many official weapons your character can use, including guns, bludgeons and blades. Even spellcasters are traditionally equipped only with spells, there are a few additional spells that can be used as weapons. Ice Knife is just one example.
Ice Knife can be an interesting spell. It has many cool uses and can also spawn other spells that you can use if you’re a necromancer. How do you use Ice Knife to your advantage? It is a cool spell. It should be used in battle. This is our Ice Knife 5e guide to the spell.
What is the Ice Knife Spell?
This spell is included with the Xanathar’s Guide to Everythingbook. Here are the stat blocks for the spell:
- 1st level conjuration
- Casting Time: 1 Action
- Distance: 60 feet
- Spell Lists: Druid, Sorcerer, Wizard
- Components: M, S (a drop of water) or a piece of ice (a piece of ice).
- Duration: Instantaneous
A shard or ice can be created and thrown at any creature within its range. You can use a ranged spell against the target. The target receives 1d10 piercing injury upon a hit. The shard explodes whether it is hit or missed. Each target and all creatures within 5 feet of where the ice exploded have to succeed on a Dexterity save throw or take 2d6 cold damages.
Higher levels. Cast this spell with a spell slot at 2nd or higher level. The cold damage is increased by 1d6 for every slot level above 1.
Let’s take a look at this spell. It is a conjuration spell of 1st level that requires 1 action to cast. It has a range of 60 feet and requires both a somatic and material component. Casting the spell takes only a few seconds. The spell is cast instantly. A ranged spell attack hits and the target takes 1d10 piercing damages. The shard then explodes.
The 2d6 cold damage will be dealt to any target within 5 feet of the target. The cold damage you receive for every slot level that you have used to cast the spell increases as you increase its effectiveness. It can also be used by Wizards, Sorcerers, and Druids.
Let’s now take a look at how the spell works in Faerun.
Why use an Ice Knife?
If used in the right situations, Ice Knife can be a very useful spell. This spell is not a cantrip, meaning it requires a spell slot to be cast. This can cause problems for low-level characters. Are you using your spell slot in order to pin an attacking goblin to the tree? Or do you use it to heal your fighter after that goblin has cut his hp pool in half by an axe.
Ice Knife’s primary purpose isn’t the 1d10 cold injury you inflict upon the target if it hits, but rather the secondary effect. This spell requires you to use a ranged spell attack on the target. The spell may miss or bounce off the AC of the target. It doesn’t matter if it hits, the secondary effect activates and then the shard explodes.
The target must make a saving throw. If they fail to do so, they will take damage from the blast. If the target isn’t careful, 2d6 cold damage could be very significant.
When should you use an ice knife?
It’s not the best time to use an Ice Knife against larger enemies, but rather the smaller enemies that gather around your party.
Let’s take, for example, a party fighting three goblins. They all clump together and fire arrows at you team. If the knife hits the middle goblin, you can throw it an ice blade at them. They will take 1d10 piercing damages. The knife will explode, and all three will be affected. If all three of them fail to roll, that’s quite a lot of damage.
If they fail their saves, it might even kill the target. Ice Knife can also be used if you’re facing weaker enemies. The explosion damage might kill them. The spell can also be used in hallways where enemies are often clumped together, and will take splash damage.
How to Cast an Ice Knife?
You first need to make a somatic gesture, or a hand gesture. This involves creating the knife, then throwing it or using magic to propel it. To cast the spell, you will also need some water or ice. Finding ice should not be difficult if you’re playing in the northern reaches or other frozen locations.
A drop of water will suffice to cast the spell if ice is not easily available or you prefer to use water. As long as the water is only a small drop, most adventurers have enough. This spell should work regardless of how hard you try to play your campaign.
Can You Cast an Ice Knife?
Officially, the spell is only allowed for wizards, druids, or sorcerers. However, if your homebrew class is built around ice or frost magic, your DM can discuss your character’s ability to cast the spell.
Officially, this ability is not available to monsters. It is an unique ability that can be combined with any number of NPC’s or arctic enemies. This ability can be used by frost elves or goblins to cast the spell.
To soften their opponents, larger arctic creatures may fire a series of ice daggers at them. This adds a new dimension to combat. Regardless of how the party dodges or deflects these knives, they will still explode, causing damage if the saves fail.
What to do if your Ice Knife is Broken
Now, follow the rules of the spell The shard explodes at the end, whether it’s hit or miss. It is easy to find the knife embedded in the target after a hit. What happens if the knife is not found? knife misses? You can usually assume that the ice knives have hit the target in some way, but not enough to cause damage. Perhaps the knife slices the skin of a bugbear, but not the thick hide.
It could have been embedded into the hide armor or shield of a goblin or bounced off the enemy to fall at their feet. It could also have embedded itself in the floor, wall, or scenery behind the enemy. Although it would be close, it could have missed.
It doesn’t matter how the knife misses, but the important thing is that the missed blade is still within 5 yards of the target and will have an impact on it when it explodes. Most DMs will simply say “The ice knife was missed”, but you can have some fun with it. If the check fails, however, the target must still take the splash damage of the explosion.
Is Ice Knife worth it?
The spell can deal damage, but not guarantee, with a ranged attack roll. It can look very small compared to other 1st-level spells, which either do guaranteed damage or give buffs and debuffs directly to your enemies and allies.
It is useful for crowd control and serious damage if you know that you will be fighting in cramped areas against enemies with low dexterity saving throws such as the undead.
Your party will have an advantage over these weaker foes if the spell is cast before combat begins. If you don’t plan to fight in cramped areas or your enemies have greater dex, this spell might not be beneficial.
Ice Knife FAQ
Is It a Knife?
Answer: Despite the fact that this spell is called “ice knife”, the description of the spell states: You create an ice shard and throw it at any creature within your range. Is it an ice knife? Or an ice fragment? The answer is simple. The spell can be whatever your character wishes it to. A very skilled sorcerer might throw ice daggers using the steel knives he sees the rogue fighting with.
Druids might be able to appreciate the beauty of nature, but instead of making something larger out of it, they could form drops of water or shards ice. It’s not hard to impale your enemies with spikes of ice!
If you wish to cosmetically flavor your spell, talk to your DM. Most of the time, they will be able to allow it. This is especially true if you have a reason for flavoring their ice knives spells.
Question – Can It Be Used On All Creatures?
Answer: Ice knives can be quite fun to use. But what about when you throw them at fire- or ice-based creatures? Let’s take, for example, a frost giant that is made of ice and snow. The stat block for a frostgiant states that it is immune from cold damage. You could also throw the dagger but it would not have any effect.
Others creatures may be immune to cold damage so they would only take half the damage from cold attacks. What about fire creatures? This attack can you use against a fire elemental, for example?
You wouldn’t do any additional damage to it because it isn’t vulnerable to cold but the attack would proceed as planned. There is a way for your DM to roleplay the situation more realistically. Water susceptibility is a ability that fire elementals possess. It states the following:
Water Sensitibility It takes 1 cold damage for every 5 feet of elemental movement in water or every gallon water splashed onto it.
Although an ice knife won’t splash a fire elemental with a gallon water, your DM can roleplay that the water melts on the ice knife and causes a lot more damage to the fire elemental. Although it’s only cosmetic, it can bring a lot of flavor and even realism to your game. It’s something that most players will appreciate.
Question – Can I Use Multiple Knives at Once?
Answer: Yes, throwing multiple knives at once at a target is more fun than any other activity. While homebrewed enemies may be able fire a knife swarm at a party, it is unlikely that you will be able do the same without making some homebrew. Your character will have to be able to cast the spell, otherwise.
One could argue that the reason cold damage increases on an upcast is because the ice knife explodes into larger pieces. However, that is probably about as close as you can get to multiple knives.