Healing Word spell in DnD 5E explained

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What is Healing Word?

Healing Word (PHB, p. 250) is a 1st level evocation spell, which is available natively to Bards, Clerics, and Druids. It only requires a vocal component and takes a bonus action to cast. When you cast the spell you choose a creature within 60 feet and restore a number of hit points to them equal to 1d4 + spellcasting modifier. However, this spell can’t restore hit points to undead or constructs, such as an Animate Dead skeleton or a Battle Smith’s Steel Defender.

If you cast this spell with a 2nd level or higher spell slot, the amount of HP restored increases by 1d4 for every level above 1st. For example, a 5th level casting of Healing Word would deal 5d4 + spellcasting modifier.

Is Healing Word a good spell?

Healing Word is an excellent healing spell in many aspects, with the bonus action casting and long-range making it extremely convenient to heal allies whilst still performing another action. The only downside to this spell is the very small die used for the healing, the lower amount of hit points restored as a result of this means that this spell is often reserved for picking up downed allies, although it can still be used to top up HP when needed.

To get more out of this spell you can either increase the number of hit points it restores or increase the number of targets that are healed by it. Examples of the first include the Life Cleric’s Disciple of Life, the Alchemist Artificer’s Alchemical Savant, and the Wildfire Druid’s Enhanced Bond. Examples of the latter are the Twinned Spell Metamagic, the Star Druid’s Chalice Form, and the Shepherd Druid’s Unicorn Spirit.

How can you get Healing Word?

If you like the sound of lyrical healing, then fear not! Here is a list of how you can grab this spell:

  • Bard, Cleric, and Druid – All of these classes get Healing Word on their spell list.
  • Alchemist (Artificer Subclass) – These alchemical Artificers get Healing Word as an always-prepared spell from their Alchemist Spells feature.
  • Divine Soul (Sorcerer Subclass) – This Sorcerer can choose spells from the Cleric spell list and can trade the additional spell known they get from their Divine Magic feature for Healing Word.
  • Divinely Favored (Feat) – Choosing the Good alignment will let you grab Healing Word from the Cleric spell list and give you the Augury spell.
  • Magic Initiate (Feat) – By choosing any of the full casters that get access to Healing Word you can get the spell and two cantrips, however, you can only cast it once per long rest unless you have at least one level in the class chosen.
  • Strixhaven Initiate (Feat) – All college options in this feat will give you the opportunity to grab Healing Word, with two cantrips from a limited list to go along with your once-per-long rest casting.

How to roleplay the Healing Word spell

Need some help roleplaying the Healing Word spell? Here are some examples to help you out:

  • As the ferocious ogre’s club comes crashing down on Grom the half-orc barbarian, he grunts in pain, falling to his knees from the impact. From the edge of the battlefield, Elara the halfling cleric utters a soothing Healing Word, her voice ringing clear above the chaos of the battle. A soft, warm light envelops Grom, knitting his wounds and rekindling his fighting spirit. With a renewed roar, he rises to face the ogre once more.
  • Trapped in the burning building, Myra the human wizard coughs, smoke obscuring her vision as she struggles to find an escape. Outside, Aldric the elf druid chants a Healing Word, his voice intertwining with the whispers of nature. A cool, revitalizing energy seeps into Myra, calming her panicked heart and mending her smoke-induced injuries, granting her the strength to push through the smoke and emerge safely from the fire.
  • In the heart of a bustling city, Rael the tiefling rogue feels the sharp sting of a pickpocket’s knife in his side. In the confusion of the crowd, Lyra the gnome bard plucks a single, resonant note on her lute. The Healing Word resonates in the air, and a comforting energy mends Rael’s wound, allowing him to give chase and retrieve the stolen item.
  • Amidst a skirmish against a pack of snarling werewolves, Zephyr the aarakocra ranger takes a vicious claw swipe and crashes to the ground. From a distance, Faelar the elf cleric lifts a feathered talisman, whispering a Healing Word to the wind. The comforting breeze carries the healing magic to Zephyr, his wounds slowly sealing, giving him the strength to take flight once more.
  • During a treacherous climb up a slippery mountainside, Bruna the dwarf warrior slips and tumbles down the rocky slope, crying out in pain. At the base of the cliff, Thalia the human druid raises her voice in a healing chant. The Healing Word echoes across the mountainside, wrapping Bruna in a restorative aura that soothes her pain and revitalizes her spirit, allowing her to rejoin the ascent with renewed determination.

Congratulations on discovering ways to provide much-needed hit points for your party in critical situations! If you’re considering using this spell for your next Alchemist build, our Artificer 5E guide is a must-read. And for those interested in researching other spells, our DnD 5E spells section is a valuable reference. Good luck on your future adventures, and be mindful not to strain your voice before the boss fight!

What is Healing Word in DnD 5E?

Healing Word is a 1st-level evocation spell in the DnD 5E. It allows the caster to restore hit points to a target creature.

How does Healing Word work in DnD 5E?

Healing Word is a bonus action spell that restores 1d4 + the spellcasting ability modifier hit points to a creature within 60 feet.

What are the benefits of using Healing Word in DnD 5E?

The benefits of using Healing Word is being able to heal at range and only needing a bonus action, letting you still use your action for something like casting a cantrip.

What are the limitations of Healing Word in DnD 5E?

The limitation of Healing Word in DnD 5E is that it uses a d4 for the healing die, this means it provides less than Cure Wounds and doesn’t upcast as efficiently.

How does Healing Word interact with other spells and abilities in DnD 5E?

There are many features that can enhance Healing Word, such as a Life Cleric’s Disciple of Life feature, or a Divine Soul Sorcerer’s Twinned Spell Metamagic.

What classes can cast Healing Word in DnD 5E?

Healing Word can be cast by Bards, Clerics, and Druids in DnD 5E. For a full list of how to get this spell see the article above.

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