Arcane Eye 5E — DnD spell explained 2024

Peer into the unseen with Arcane Eye 5E. Send forth a magical sensor to scout and survey.

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What is Arcane Eye 5E?

Arcane Eye 5E (PHB, p. 214) is a 4th level divination spell in Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition. It requires verbal, somatic, and material components to cast, with the latter being bat fur. It has a duration of up to 1 hour, as long as you maintain concentration on the spell in the meantime. When you cast this spell, you create an invisible, floating magical sensor within 30 feet of you. The sensor has darkvision out to a range of 30 feet and can only see normally up to 30 feet. It can pass through small openings and around corners, as long as there is at least a 1 inch diameter space to pass through, however, the sensor is incapable of entering a different plane. You can use an action to see through the sensor’s eyes, allowing you to observe an area as if you were standing in its location. You can also use your action to move the sensor up to 30 feet in any direction of your choice.

Is Arcane Eye 5E a good spell?

Arcane Eye 5E: Sorcerer casting spell to see future
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In terms of utility, Arcane Eye is an excellent spell for scouting and reconnaissance. It allows you to see through obstacles, traps, and other hazards without putting yourself at risk. The ability to move the sensor around makes it useful for exploring a dungeon or other enclosed area, without having to expose yourself to danger. It can also be used to spy on enemies, eavesdrop on conversations, or monitor an area for potential threats.

However, the spell does have limitations. The sensor cannot interact with its environment or manipulate objects, making it difficult to perform some tasks. Additionally, the sensor can be detected by spells such as Detect Magic or See Invisibility, and some enemies have special senses, such as truesight and blindsight, which could alert enemies to your presence.

Overall, Arcane Eye is a highly situational spell, but in the right circumstances, it can be invaluable for gathering information and staying out of harm’s way.

How can you get Arcane Eye 5E spell?

Arcane Eye 5E: Sorcerer with glowing eyes
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If you like the idea of surveying areas from a safe distance, then we have you covered! Here is a list of ways you can grab this spell:

  • Artificer, Wizard – Arcane Eye is on the spell list of these classes, and Wizards can also learn it by adding it to their spellbook from a scroll or another spell book.
  • Arcane Trickster (Rogue Subclass) – This Rogue can choose spells from the Wizard spell list, and can choose Arcane Eye as one of their unrestricted spells at 20th level.
  • Eldritch Knight (Fighter Subclass) – Similar to above, this Fighter subclass can choose spells from the Wizard list and can choose Arcane Eye as one of their unrestricted spells at 20th level.
  • Arcana Domain (Cleric Subclass) – This Cleric gets Arcane Eye as a Domain Spell at 7th level.
  • Knowledge Domain (Cleric Subclass) – Like above, this Cleric also gets this spell as a Domain Spell.
  • Swarmkeeper (Ranger Subclass) – These Rangers get access to Arcane Eye from the Swarmkeeper Magic feature at 13th level.
  • Visions of Distant Realms (Warlock Eldritch Invocation) – From 15th level, a Warlock can take this Invocation to cast Arcane Eye at-will, without the need for using a spell slot.
  • Magical Secrets (Bard Feature) – This feature allows a Bard to choose any spell from any list, which can include Arcane Eye, from as early as 10th level.

How to roleplay the Arcane Eye 5E spell

Arcane Eye 5E: Sorcerer with stretched out hand
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Need some help roleplaying the Arcane Eye spell? Here are some examples to help you out:

  • As you begin casting the spell, you feel a strange sensation at the back of your eyes. Suddenly, you are transported to a different perspective, seeing the world through the view of an invisible, floating eye. You can direct the eye to move through the dungeon, careful to look for traps.
  • You close your eyes and concentrate, feeling your mind reach out and create a magical sensor in the shape of an eye. You can feel the eye moving independently of your body, hovering in the air and surveying the area around you. A smile stretches across your face, the cultists certainly won’t be expecting this.
  • You gesture with your hands and speak a few arcane words, conjuring a glowing, ethereal eye that hovers in the air in front of you. As you focus your concentration, the eye begins to move, gliding through the air and scanning the area. It doesn’t take long to spot the kobolds, waiting patiently to ambush your party but completely unaware of your surveillance.

Congratulations on successfully avoiding a room full of monsters! We’re glad that our article could help keep you safe. If you’re interested in giving this spell a more gadget-inspired theme, be sure to check out our Artificer 5E guide. And for those looking to broaden their knowledge of spells, our DnD 5E spells section has everything you need. Best of luck on your future adventures, and remember to prepare this spell for the chunin exams!

Expert Editor-in-Chief