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Nerdarchy > Dungeons & Dragons  > Character Builds  > Wringing Out 5E D&D’s Eldritch Adept Feat for More Eldritch Invocations

Wringing Out 5E D&D’s Eldritch Adept Feat for More Eldritch Invocations

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Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted contemplate the potential of the Eldritch Adept feat for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons characters. The new Eldritch Adept feat found in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything is available for 5E D&D characters with the Spellcasting or Pact Magic features and allows them to learn one Eldritch Invocation option of their choice from the warlock class. Let’s get into it.

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Does an Eldritch Invocation make the cut?

The most important thing to note as regards the Eldritch Adept feat are the parameters. Selecting the feat requires the character to have the Spellcasting or Pact Magic feature but there’s an additional prerequisite baked into the text of the feat, which indicates if the Eldritch Invocation itself carries a prerequisite the character must be a warlock who fulfills it as well. In the video Dave and Ted missed this part and mention how several options become more viable if the character can cast eldritch blast. While this is true they don’t make it clear the character must also be a warlock — the ability to cast eldritch blast isn’t enough.

Eldritch Invocations and Eldritch Adept feat for nonwarlocks

  1. Armor of Shadows
  2. Beast Speech
  3. Beguiling Influence
  4. Devil’s Sight
  5. Eldritch Mind
  6. Eldritch Sight
  7. Eyes of the Rune Keeper
  8. Fiendish Vigor
  9. Gaze of Two Minds
  10. Mask of Many Faces
  11. Misty Visions
  12. Thief of Five Fates

Since I am playing my first warlock character in a new campaign starting Jan. 19 I’ve got Eldritch Invocations on my mind. When I created my character for Ted’s Dungeons & Delving campaign over at Nerdarchy Live I overcame the usual frustration I’ve felt whenever I considered playing a warlock. There’s a lot of moving parts to this 5E D&D class. Otherworldly Patrons, Pact Boons, Eldritch Invocations and Pact Magic spells feel tricky to puzzle out. For me it came down to action economy, concentration and the interplay between these components and I think that’s where the complexity arises.

These concerns don’t really apply to Eldritch Adept as much. The majority of potential Eldritch Invocations available to nonwarlocks through the feat offer utility rather than abilities characters might employ during combat. Instead, like many of the new feats in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything this one seems more like a pathway to incorporating fantastic powers into otherwise more mundane 5E D&D characters.

The notable exception to Eldritch Adept when compared with similar feats granting magical powers like Shadow Touched is the Spellcasting or Pact Magic feature prerequisite. Metamagic Adept carries the name prerequisite and in this case it makes sense to some extent. The ability to cast a spell at all seems more appropriate but I understand the use of Class Features rather than a more generic prerequisite for this one.

I’m sure there’s a design reason for Eldritch Adept’s requirements but if I’m honest I can’t figure it out. Would it unbalance something if a barbarian could cast silent image at will through the Misty Visions Eldritch Invocation? If a monk could read all writing would this break the game? I don’t think so but nevertheless here’s all the 5E D&D character classes eligible to select the Eldritch Adept feat in lieu of an Ability Score Improvement if the Dungeon Master allows for this optional rule in their games.

  • Artificer
  • Bard
  • Cleric
  • Druid
  • Eldritch Knight fighter
  • Paladin
  • Ranger
  • Arcane Trickster rogue
  • Sorcerer
  • Warlock
  • Wizard

In the spirit of Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything and the reinforcement of individualized rulings and house rules baked into this iteration of D&D I’d allow for any characters to choose Eldritch Adept. If it turns out to be a misstep for the character or unforeseen negative results arise on the DM’s side of things it’s a quick conversation and tweak to the character to get back on track.

Continuing on the same path of opening up the possibilities I’m not opposed to dismissing the internal restriction on Eldritch Adept too. If the Eldritch Invocation in question carries a prerequisite would it be terrible to let any character — not just warlocks who meet the prerequisite — choose the feat? I would adhere to any level requirements but beyond this where’s the harm?

Here’s all the Eldritch Invocations off the table when it comes to Eldritch Adept for nonwarlocks. Along with each of them is a bit of commentary exploring the ups and downs of making them available to characters through Eldritch Adept. Eldritch Invocations with an asterisk are related to eldritch blast so if a character gains this cantrip through some other means besides being a warlock these ones simply enhance the spell and I’m perfectly okay with these character choices along the way if the player so desires with an important caveat — characters can only choose Eldritch Adept once so only one of these Eldritch Invocations could be applied. But they all make the cut!

  • *Agonizing Blast
  • Ascendant Step. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast levitate at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Aspect of the Moon. If a character really wants to no longer need sleep or be forced to sleep by any means I’m okay with this choice for characters without a Pact of the Tome. Makes the cut!
  • Bewitching Whispers. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast compulsion once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Bond of the Talisman. Like other Eldritch Invocations related to the Pact of the Talisman this one depends on the talisman itself, which a nonwarlock would not have. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Book of Ancient Secrets. Ritual Caster more or less does the same thing. While this one doesn’t seem like it would cause any issues I’d just as soon keep it simpler and recommend that feat instead. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Chains of Carceri. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast hold monster once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Cloak of Flies. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can surround themselves with an aura of magical buzzing flies granting advantage on Charisma (Intimidation) checks, disadvantage on all other Charisma checks and dealing poison damage to nearby creatures doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Dreadful Word. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast confusion once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Eldritch Smite. Hmmm. When it comes to this one I’m starting to see the reason for Eldritch Adept restrictions. Perhaps Eldritch Invocations with prerequisites related to Pact Boons makes a better restriction? This would be way too powerful for any old character to incorporate. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • *Eldritch Spear
  • Far Scribe. The features of this Eldritch Invocation refer to a Pact Boon but essentially allow the character to cast sending in a limited capacity. Without the particular Pact Boon it becomes too noodly to justify. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Ghostly Gaze. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can see through solid objects for 1 minute per short or long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Gift of the Depths. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can breathe underwater, gains a swimming speed and can cast water breathing once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Gift of the Ever-Living Ones. This refers to a Pact Boon but in broader terms simply refers to a familiar. I’d allow it. Makes the cut!
  • Gift of the Protectors. The features of this Eldritch Invocation refer to a Pact Boon and becomes too noodly to justify without it. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • *Grasp of Hadar
  • Improved Pact Weapon. The features of this Eldritch Invocation refer to a Pact Boon and I suspect would lead to munchkin players. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Investment of the Chain Master. Characters with familiars can juice up their spiritual assistants with some cool benefits. Makes the cut!
  • *Lance of Lethargy
  • Lifedrinker. The features of this Eldritch Invocation refer to a Pact Boon but this doesn’t seem like it would be too outrageous to allow nonwarlocks to incorporate into their characters. Makes the cut!
  • Maddening Hex. This one’s an edge case in the sense it doesn’t necessarily depend on anything warlock specific across the board but its usefulness can be diminished by the reduced opportunities to put this one to use. Makes the cut!
  • Master of Myriad Forms. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast alter self at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Minions of Chaos. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast conjure elemental once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Mire the Mind. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast slow once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • One with Shadows. Invisibility at will while a character remains unmoving in areas of dim light or darkness doesn’t seem like a bridge too far to me. Makes the cut!
  • Otherworldly Leap. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast jump at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Protection of the Talisman. Like other Eldritch Invocations related to the Pact of the Talisman this one depends on the talisman itself, which a nonwarlock would not have. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Rebuke of the Talisman. Like other Eldritch Invocations related to the Pact of the Talisman this one depends on the talisman itself, which a nonwarlock would not have. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Relentless Hex. This one’s an edge case in the sense it doesn’t necessarily depend on anything warlock specific across the board but its usefulness can be diminished by the reduced opportunities to put this one to use. Makes the cut!
  • *Repelling Blast
  • Sculptor of Flesh. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast polymorph once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Shroud of Shadow. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast invisibility at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Sign of Ill Omen. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast bestow curse once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. As a side note this one increases the usefulness of Maddening Hex and Relentless Hex. Makes the cut!
  • Thirsting Blade. The features of this Eldritch Invocation refer to a Pact Boon and while I can imagine working around the reference to a pact weapon this would be much too easy an investment for a character to gain a tremendous benefit. Doesn’t make the cut!
  • Tomb of Levistus. Granting a character incredibly flavorful temporary defenses once per short or long rest seems totally okay by me. Makes the cut!
  • Trickster’s Escape. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast freedom of movement once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Undying Servitude. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast animate dead once per long rest doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Visions of Distant Realms. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast arcane eye at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Voice of the Chain Master. Like some other Eldritch Invocations related to a specific Pact Boon I think this is another one that neither breaks the game nor creates a shortcut to powerful benefits. Makes the cut!
  • Whispers of the Grave. A barbarian, monk, fighter other than Eldritch Knight or rogue other than Arcane Trickster who can cast speak with dead at will doesn’t seem any more or less impactful than any of the other potential 5E D&D characters. Makes the cut!
  • Witch Sight. Seeing through illusions and shapechanged creatures feels more than acceptable for a 5E D&D character without inherent Spellcasting or Pact Magic features. Makes the cut!

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Doug Vehovec

Nerditor-in-Chief Doug Vehovec is a proud native of Cleveland, Ohio, with D&D in his blood since the early 80s. Fast forward to today and he’s still rolling those polyhedral dice. When he’s not DMing, worldbuilding or working on endeavors for Nerdarchy he enjoys cryptozoology trips and eating awesome food.

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