10 Worst Ranger Spells in D&D

Rangers in Dungeons & Dragons are known for their affinity with the natural world, prowess as hunters and trackers, and mastery of archery and dual-wielding melee combat. Their spellcasting abilities, often overlooked compared to other spellcasting classes, can significantly enhance their versatility. However, not all spells are well-suited for Rangers, as they rely on their unique blend of skills and combat abilities to thrive in the wilderness and on the battlefield. Rangers should choose spells that complement their skills and align with their outdoor, survivalist lifestyle.

1 Alarm

Allocating one of the Ranger’s limited spell slots to Alarm may not be the best use of resources, especially when a few bells on a string can accomplish much of the same. It may be better to leave this abjuration to other adventurers capable of casting ritual spells.

2 Locate Object

The utility of this spell is contingent on specific conditions that a clever adversary can easily circumvent. Locate Object becomes a choice with limited practicality when faced with adversaries well-versed in arcane knowledge and intent on concealing valuable items. These adversaries might employ countermeasures such as lead wrappings, rendering the spell ineffective.

3 Locate Animals or Plants

Opting for a spell that replicates the unique skills inherent to Rangers is redundant. With their high levels of Survival and Nature proficiency, Rangers should easily navigate their environments without the need for this spell.

4 Jump

The situational nature of the Jump spell, coupled with the already elevated athleticism of Rangers, makes it a less compelling choice. Rangers typically possess high athleticism, reducing the necessity of investing in this spell.

5 Summon Beast

The viability of this spell is heavily reliant on both the spell level and the character’s spellcasting ability modifier. Most Rangers may lack the necessary Wisdom, and even those who heavily invest in Wisdom may find that the progression through spell levels is not rapid enough to sustain the beast’s combat effectiveness. This diminishing return makes Summon Beast a less practical choice for many Rangers, considering the resources required for its optimization.

6 Water Walk

Although the visual spectacle of walking on water might captivate a specific audience, the availability of the Fly spell coincides with this ability, which frequently offers superior utility compared to the relatively straightforward act of walking on liquids.

7 Detect Poison and Disease

Casting Detect Poison and Disease as a ritual enhances its versatility, although its practicality remains highly situation-dependent. For individuals capable of casting Protection From Poison, a spell available to Rangers at the third level, this spell may be considered redundant.

8 Animal Messenger

Animal Messenger is a situational and less reliable alternative to spells like Sending, but it comes at a lower spell level. It can work well if you know that your recipient will be in the location where you send your message, but it lacks the recipient’s ability to respond. It’s a highly specialized spell, often challenging for Rangers to justify.

9 Barkskin

Overall, Barkskin is an excellent concept for a protective spell. However, at the point in time when a Ranger gains access to this arcane knowledge, their standard AC often outshines the benefits of this spell. Like the others on this list, looking for something more practical or powerful would be best.

10 Find Traps

Find Traps can be a costly and imprecise spell choice, especially in larger adventuring parties. Most Rangers can achieve remarkable success and utility by investing in their Investigation skills or delegating trap detection to classes better suited for the task, such as Rogues.

Rangers in Dungeons & Dragons thrive in the wild, using their unique blend of combat skills and survivalist abilities to navigate a dangerous world. While they possess spellcasting capabilities, Rangers should select spells that complement their strengths and align with their natural, outdoorsy lifestyle. While not entirely useless, the ten spells mentioned above are generally poor choices for Rangers, as they often do not enhance their core abilities or fit their preferred roles on the adventuring team. When building a Ranger character, choosing spells that reinforce their survival instincts and prowess in combat is essential, ensuring they remain true to their nature-bound calling.

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