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OSR Cantrips

OSR Cantrips

I added an option to my game wherein Spellcasters may choose to take a Cantrip instead of a Feat on even levels. At first the Spellcasters (particularly the Clerics in the party) were resistant to Cantrips because they preferred the more immediate combat-oriented advantages of some of the Feats. However, my Magic-User keyed into them and now they are all looking at the Cantrips as well as the Feats.

I am aware that the idea of Cantrips (and especially cantrips that deal damage) work somewhat against the concept of spellcasting in OSR games but, in my experience, the impact has been largely superficial–now instead of making ranged attacks with her sling, the Magic User makes ranged attacks with her Ray of Frost at essentially the same chance to hit and at essentially the same damage.

As with the OSR Feats, these are basically all adapted from the 5e Rules.

CANTRIPS

Instead of taking a feat at a given level, Clerics, Magic Users, and Elves may choose to learn a Cantrip. A cantrip is a spell that can be cast at will, without using a spell slot and without having to be prepared in advance. Repeated castings have fixed the spell in the caster’s mind and infused the caster with the magic needed to produce the effect over and over.

Clerical Cantrips                            

Guidance

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

You touch one willing creature. Once before the spell ends, the target can roll a d4 and add the number rolled to one ability check of its choice. It can roll the die before or after making the ability check. The spell then ends.

Light

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: 1 hour

You touch one object that is no larger than 10 feet in any dimension. Until the spell ends, the object sheds bright light in a 20-foot radius and dim light for an additional 20 feet. The light can be colored as you like. Completely covering the object with something opaque blocks the light. The spell ends if you cast it again or dismiss it as an action.

If you target an object held or worn by a hostile creature, that creature must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw to avoid the spell.

Mending

Casting Time: 1 minute

Range: Touch

Duration: Instantaneous

This spell repairs a single break or tear in an object you touch, such as a broken chain link, two halves of a broken key, a torn cloak, or a leaking wineskin. As long as the break or tear is no larger than 1 foot in any dimension, you mend it, leaving no trace of the former damage.

This spell can physically repair a magic item or construct, but the spell can’t restore magic to such an object.

Resistance

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

You touch one willing creature. Once before the spell ends, the target can roll a d4 and add the number rolled to one saving throw of its choice. It can roll the die before or after making the saving throw. The spell then ends.

Sacred Flame

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 60 feet

Duration: Instantaneous

Flame-like radiance descends on a creature that you can see within range. The target must succeed on a saving throw vs spell or take 1d4 radiant damage.

The target gains no benefit from cover for this saving throw. The spell’s damage increases by 1d4 when you reach 6th level (2d4), 10th level (3d4), and 14th level (4d4).

Sprout

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 10 foot radius

Duration: Instantaneous

By means of this cantrip, the caster causes acceleration in the growth of plants, particularly with respect to the germination of plant seeds. Upon its casting, the cantrip will cause seeds to shoot forth tiny sprouts, newly sprouted plants to grow an inch or so, buds to flower, etc. Fruits and vegetables can be caused to ripen (or actually go past ripening to spoilage) by this cantrip.

Thaumaturgy

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: Up to 1 minute

You manifest a minor wonder, a sign of supernatural power, within range. You create one of the following magical effects within range:

  • Your voice booms up to three times as loud as normal for 1 minute.
  • You cause flames to flicker, brighten, dim, or change color for 1 minute.
  • You cause harmless tremors in the ground for 1 minute.
  • You create an instantaneous sound that originates from a point of your choice within range, such as a rumble of thunder, the cry of a raven, or ominous whispers.
  • You instantaneously cause an unlocked door or window to fly open or slam shut.
  • You alter the appearance of your eyes for 1 minute.

If you cast this spell multiple times, you can have up to three of its 1-minute effects active at a time, and you can dismiss such an effect as an action.

Magic User/Elven Cantrips                      

Acid Splash

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 60 feet

Duration: Instantaneous

You hurl a bubble of acid. Choose one creature within range, or choose two creatures within range that are within 5 feet of each other. A target must succeed on a Save vs. Spells or take 1d4 acid damage.

This spell’s damage increases by 1d4 when you reach 6th level (2d4), 10th level (3d4), and 14th level (4d4).

Change

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: Up to 1 hour

By means of a change cantrip, the caster alters one small object to another, although the change must be within the same kingdom, and only animal and vegetable objects are affected. Thus, a piece of parchment can be changed to a brightly colored cloth square, then the cloth can be changed to a rose by another use of the cantrip. Likewise, a bird can be changed into a bat, the bat to a flying squirrel by another use of the same type of cantrip, and so forth.

Dancing Lights

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 120 feet

Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

You create up to four torch-sized lights within range, making them appear as torches, lanterns, or glowing orbs that hover in the air for the duration. You can also combine the four lights into one glowing vaguely humanoid form of Medium size. Whichever form you choose, each light sheds dim light in a 10-foot radius.

As a bonus action on your turn, you can move the lights up to 60 feet to a new spot within range. A light must be within 20 feet of another light created by this spell, and a light winks out if it exceeds the spell’s range.

Firefinger

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: 1 round

The firefinger cantrip enables the caster to cause a jet of flame up to one-half foot in length to shoot forth from his or her finger. The flame is very hot and will ignite combustible materials such as parchment, twigs, kindling, and the like without difficulty, providing the materials are relatively dry.

Hide

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: 1 turn

This cantrip allows the caster to magically hide an object of virtually any size for a short period of time. Note that the magic does not affect sound, so that if a crowing rooster were made to seemingly disappear, the noise of its cry would still be heard. Likewise, if an elephant were hidden by the cantrip, the sound of its tread, trumpeting, or even breathing might be heard. The magic will not work if viewers are beside or behind the caster.

Light

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: 1 hour

You touch one object that is no larger than 10 feet in any dimension. Until the spell ends, the object sheds bright light in a 20-foot radius and dim light for an additional 20 feet. The light can be colored as you like. Completely covering the object with something opaque blocks the light. The spell ends if you cast it again or dismiss it as an action.

If you target an object held or worn by a hostile creature, that creature must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw to avoid the spell.

Mage Hand

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: 1 minute

A spectral, floating hand appears at a point you choose within range. The hand lasts for the duration or until you dismiss it as an action. The hand vanishes if it is ever more than 30 feet away from you or if you cast this spell again.

You can use your action to control the hand. You can use the hand to manipulate an object, open an unlocked door or container, stow or retrieve an item from an open container, or pour the contents out of a vial. You can move the hand up to 30 feet each time you use it.

The hand can’t attack, activate magic items, or carry more than 10 pounds.

Message

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 120 feet

Duration: 1 round

You point your finger toward a creature within range and whisper a message. The target (and only the target) hears the message and can reply in a whisper that only you can hear.

You can cast this spell through solid objects if you are familiar with the target and know it is beyond the barrier. Magical silence, 1 foot of stone, 1 inch of common metal, a thin sheet of lead, or 3 feet of wood blocks the spell. The spell doesn’t have to follow a straight line and can travel freely around corners or through openings.

Minor Illusion

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: 1 minute

You create a sound or an image of an object within range that lasts for the duration. The illusion also ends if you dismiss it as an action or cast this spell again.

If you create a sound, its volume can range from a whisper to a scream. It can be your voice, someone else’s voice, a lion’s roar, a beating of drums, or any other sound you choose. The sound continues unabated throughout the duration, or you can make discrete sounds at different times before the spell ends.

If you create an image of an object—such as a chair, muddy footprints, or a small chest—it must be no larger than a 5-foot cube. The image can’t create sound, light, smell, or any other sensory effect. Physical interaction with the image reveals it to be an illusion, because things can pass through it.

If a creature uses its action to examine the sound or image, the creature can determine that it is an illusion with a successful Intelligence (Investigation) check against your spell save DC. If a creature discerns the illusion for what it is, the illusion becomes faint to the creature.

Present

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 20 feet

Duration: Instantaneous

 A present cantrip enables the caster to bring any small object or series of objects from within a 20-foot radius of his or her person to his or her hand. The object or objects will appear magically in the caster’s hand as he or she puts the hand upward or outward with a flourish and speaks the key word to begin the spell.

Prestidigitation

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 10 feet

Duration: Up to 1 hour

This spell is a minor magical trick that novice spellcasters use for practice. You create one of the following magical effects within range:

  • You create an instantaneous, harmless sensory effect, such as a shower of sparks, a puff of wind, faint musical notes, or an odd odor.
  • You instantaneously light or snuff out a candle, a torch, or a small campfire.
  • You instantaneously clean or soil an object no larger than 1 cubic foot.
  • You chill, warm, or flavor up to 1 cubic foot of nonliving material for 1 hour.
  • You make a color, a small mark, or a symbol appear on an object or a surface for 1 hour.
  • You create a nonmagical trinket or an illusory image that can fit in your hand and that lasts until the end of your next turn.

If you cast this spell multiple times, you can have up to three of its non-instantaneous effects active at a time, and you can dismiss such an effect as an action.

Ray of Frost

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 60 feet

Duration: Instantaneous

A frigid beam of blue-white light streaks toward a creature within range. Make a ranged spell attack against the target (add Int. modifier to hit). On a hit, it takes 1d6 cold damage, and its speed is reduced by 10 feet until the start of your next turn.

The spell’s damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 6th level (2d6), 10th level (3d6), and 14th level (4d6).

Shocking Grasp

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: Touch

Duration: Instantaneous

Lightning springs from your hand to deliver a shock to a creature you try to touch. Make a melee spell attack against the target (add Int. modifier to hit). You have advantage on the attack roll if the target is wearing armor made of metal. On a hit, the target takes 1d6 lightning damage, and it can’t take reactions until the start of its next turn.

The spell’s damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 6th level (2d6), 10th level (3d6), and 14th level (4d6).

True Strike

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: 30 feet

Duration: Concentration, up to 1 round

You extend your hand and point a finger at a target in range. Your magic grants you a brief insight into the target’s defenses. On your next turn, you gain advantage on your first attack roll against the target, provided that this spell hasn’t ended.

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