Sacred Flame 5E — DnD spell explained 2024

Unleash divine fire with our guide to the Sacred Flame 5E spell. Purge the wicked in DnD using holy radiance.

Sacred Flame 5E: Tiefling from dnd holding fire bolts in his hands
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What is Sacred Flame 5E?

Sacred Flame 5E is an evocation cantrip available only to Clerics natively. It takes an action to cast with vocal and somatic components, when you do so a creature you can see within 60 ft. must make a Dexterity saving throw. The target can’t benefit from cover for the purposes of making the saving throw, on a failure, the target takes 1d8 radiant damage and takes no damage on a successful saving throw. The damage increases to 2d8 at 5th level, 3d8 at 11th level, and 4d8 at 17th level.

Is Sacred Flame 5E a good spell?

Sacred Flame is an okay spell, the main shortfall of this spell is that it is only a d8 damage die due to the ability to ignore cover. However, the amount that enemies might utilize cover depends entirely on both the adventure you’re playing and how your DM runs the monsters. Even if they do make use of cover, they may have full cover, which would prevent casting as you wouldn’t be able to see the creature or have a clear path to them. 

Sacred Flame is only really recommended as a primary option if you have ways of increasing the damage or versatility of the spell. For example, a Celestial Warlock’s Radiant Soul feature would allow them to add their Charisma modifier to the damage, or a Lunar Sorcerer, who can target two creatures within 5 ft. of each other instead of just one.

How can you get Sacred Flame 5E spell?

Being a Cleric exclusive, there aren’t many ways to rain divine fire upon your foes, but here are some options:

  • Cleric – The only class that gets Sacred Flame on their spell list.
  • Divine Soul (Sorcerer Subclass) – This Sorcerer subclass allows you to choose spells from the Cleric spell list.
  • Lunar Sorcery (Sorcerer Subclass) – Thanks to their Moon Fire feature, these Sorcerers learn Sacred Flame and can target two creatures within 5 ft. of each other with a single casting.
  • Celestial (Warlock Subclass) – The Bonus Cantrips feature gives these Warlocks both Sacred Flame and Light.
  • Pact of the Tome (Warlock feature) – This pact allows you to choose three cantrips from any spell list and make them Warlock spells for you.
  • Blessed Warrior (Fighting Style) – From the Optional Class Features section of TCoE, this fighting style allows you to choose two cantrips from the Cleric spell list and make them Paladin spells.
  • Astral Elf (Subrace) – You can choose either Sacred Flame, Light, or Dancing Lights with this starry elf’s Astral Fire feature.
  • Divinely Favored (Feat) – In addition to choosing one Cleric cantrip of your choice, this feat also gives you the Augury spell and one 1st level spell, with the spell list depending on the alignment you choose when you take this feat.
  • Magic Initiate (Feat) – By choosing Cleric as the class you choose this as one of your two cantrips.
  • Strixhaven Initiate (Feat) – If this feat is available, then choosing Lorehold or Silverquill as your college will get you Sacred Flame as long as one other cantrip from a limited list and a 1st level spell.

How to roleplay the Sacred Flame 5E spell

Need some help roleplaying the Sacred Flame spell? Here are some examples to help you out:

  • As a horde of skeletons advances, the dwarf Cleric clasps his holy symbol, invoking a Sacred Flame. A column of radiant fire descends from the heavens, bathing the skeletons in divine energy. The unholy creatures shriek as the flame sears their bones, turning them to ash.
  • Surrounded by goblins in a dark cave, the human Cleric reaches out to her deity, commanding a Sacred Flame to appear. The dark is split by a pillar of divine fire, engulfing the nearest goblin who howls in pain as the heavenly fire burns away at its form.
  • Amidst a fierce battle against a vampire, the Warlock calls forth a Sacred Flame. A radiant fire descends from above, singeing the vampire with its hallowed light and causing the creature to recoil from the power of the divine, its wounds no longer healing.

We hope you’ve found this article informative and have learned the true way to rain divine wrath upon your enemies. If you found this guide planning your Celestial Warlock, then check out our Warlock 5E Guide, or if you just like learning about 5E spells then check out our DnD 5E spells section. Good luck out there adventurers, and until next time, let ‘em hide, cover can’t help them now!

Expert Editor-in-Chief