Suggestion spell in DnD 5E explained

The guard laughed and slapped the Sorcerer on the back as he took out his keys to open the cell. After all, it was such a funny joke, wasn’t it? How did it go again… Well never mind, he had a great point the troublemaker had stewed long enough to learn their lesson, no need for a bunch of paperwork. It wasn’t until they were gone he realized how strange it was he let her go so easily, she was facing charges of drunk and disorderly and assaulting multiple on-duty guards. The Sorcerer had a large smile on his face for the rest of the day, he was never going to let the Paladin forget the night she’d had a few too many ales.

What is Suggestion?

Suggestion is a 2nd level Enchantment spell primarily available to arcane spell casters, such as the Bard and Wizard. It requires a vocal and material component, with the latter being a snake’s tongue and either a piece of honeycomb or a drop of sweet oil. It takes an action to cast, forcing a creature within 30 feet to make a Wisdom saving throw, having to carry out the suggestion you made to them as long as it is not obviously harmful to them. The suggestion must only be one or two sentences long and can feature a trigger, such as giving their horse to the first beggar they come across during the duration. The spell lasts for 8 hours whilst you maintain concentration, the spell ends when the suggestion is completed, or earlier if it takes longer than the duration, or the caster loses concentration. The spell can also end early if you, or any of your companions, damage the target of the spell.

For this spell to work you need to see the creature, and they must be able to hear and understand you. Creatures immune to the charmed condition are also immune to this spell.

Is Suggestion a good spell?

This is a great out-of-combat spell that can allow you to achieve your goals in a far more subtle, and nonviolent, way than you may otherwise be able to achieve. If you choose to try and use this spell in combat, just understand that for some combatants stopping or fighting alongside you may be a harmful act that they won’t follow. Otherwise, you can increase the effectiveness of Suggestion by learning more languages or gaining features that allow more creatures to understand you. 

An example of an ideal use case for this spell is ‘convincing’ a guard to escort you through a checkpoint you’d otherwise have had to fight, or attempt to sneak past.

How can you get Suggestion?

If this spell interests you then fear not! It is a widely accessible spell, on four different spell lists and accessible to many subclasses:

  • Bard, Sorcerer, Warlock, and Wizard – These four classes get access to Suggestion on their spell lists.
  • Knowledge Domain (Cleric Subclass) – This Cleric gets the spell as a Domain Spell at 3rd level.
  • Arcane Trickster (Rogue Subclass) – This Rogue can choose spells from the Wizard spell list, and can choose Suggestion as one of their restricted spells at 7th level as it is from the Enchantment school.
  • Eldritch Knight (Fighter Subclass) – Similar to above, this Fighter subclass can choose spells from the Wizard list and can choose Suggestion with one of their limited unrestricted choices at 8th level.
  • Aberrant Mind (Sorcerer Subclass) – Whilst the Sorcerer class as a whole can choose this spell, the Aberrant Mind gains a slew of additional spells that they can trade for a different spell from the Divination or Enchantment school. This can help a Sorcerer deal with their very limited number of spells known. 
  • Fierna Tiefling (Race Variant) – This alternative to the PHB Tiefling can cast Suggestion once per long rest from 5th level onwards, in addition to Charm Person and Friends. If you are a fan of this type of spell, this is a good race option for you.
  • Yuan-ti Pureblood (Race Option) – This snakefolk gains the ability to cast Suggestion once per long rest from 3rd level onwards. The version of this race presented in Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse also allows a character with spell slots to cast the spell with those slots in addition to the free casting.

Hopefully, this article gave you some enchanting suggestions for your next character build. If you’re interested in researching other spells then check out our spells section, or if you’re here because you’re preparing for your next Warlock, then check out our Warlock guide. Good luck out there adventurers, next time you talk to your friends you should share this site, no need for that Wisdom save.

Editor-in-Chief