What Is Spell Attack Bonus? Playing Dungeons And Dragons

What Is Spell Attack Bonus

Spellcasting makes fantasy games unique. They make the much-anticipated video game, Dungeons, and Dragons, a must-play. 

Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition is one of the best tabletop role-playing video games across the globe. The fifth edition is more like a big step forward from the previous editions. 

But like every video game, Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition boasts specific rules. And players are expected to follow the rules to the latter to enjoy the game.     

So, in this post, we will look at the meaning of the spell attack bonus and other elements of DnD 5e.  

What Spell Attack Bonus Is

Dungeons and Dragons boast several terminologies. They’re part and parcel of the game. Players sometimes mix up the meaning of these terms, leading to confusion and loss of interest.

The “spell attack bonus” is one of such terminologies common in DnD 5e. And it’s crucial for players to know what the technical term stands for. 

So, what does the spell attack bonus means? Another word for spell attack bonus is a spell attack modifier. They both mean the same thing. But the most commonly understood term is Spell attack modifier. 

If you check the Players’ handbook for a spell attack bonus, you might be disappointed. What is mentioned there is a spell attack modifier. Not a spell attack bonus. 

Now, this takes us to the next question. 

What Does Spell Attack Modifier Mean? 

We have established that the spell attack bonus and spell attack modifier are the same. Now, what is a spell attack modifier? It refers to the variable players add when doing their computing for the spell attack roll.

What Spell Attack Modifier In Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition is Used For 

Players must have sound knowledge of spell attack modifiers when playing Dungeons and Dragons’ fifth edition. Why? Spells are a crucial part of this fantasy role-playing game. 

So, where do you get the spell attack modifier? Players derive the modifier from Ability Score, which the Spellcasting class features from individual class use.   

You can compute the Spell Attack Roll using the Spell Attack Modifier, Ability Score, d20, and proficiency bonus.  

Another thing you need to know is there are different sources for each class that boasts the Spellcasting class feature. 

A clear example is the ability modifier used by Wizard and Paladin. You’ll find that wizards can utilize ability modifiers obtained from intelligence, while Paladin will utilize ability modifiers obtained from Charisma. 

What do you need to compute attack rolls for spells that utilize the Attack Rolls? It is simple. You’ll require the Spell attack Modifier for such calculations.    

You’ll notice that the Wizard spell fireball doesn’t use the attack roll. But the Wizard cantrip Fire Bolt utilizes attack rolls.   

What happens to spells that don’t utilize Attack Rolls? You have to secure the Spell Attack Modifier specifically for the Spell Save DC. Please note that when you acquire the Spell Attack Modifier, you have to add eight, and that’s it – you now have your Spell Save DC.      

What Cleric Spell Attack bonus Is 

Cleric spell attack bonus is another popular terminology in Dungeons and Dragons. And here’s the easiest way to explain its meaning. 

Your class utilizes spellcasting stat for casting spells. And in this case, what you would have is a wisdom modifier for Cleric and Druids, intelligence for Wizard. At the same time, sorcerers utilize Charisma as their main Ability Score for casting spells. 

What about Warlocks? Do they cast spells with their Charisma? No, they aren’t using it. Instead, what they utilize is their will, which they consider as wisdom. 

Are Spell Attack Modifiers And Spell Attack Bonus The same? 

Yes, both have the same meaning. Most people use them interchangeably, but the most common term is the Attack Modifier. 

Online, you’ll find people using spell attack bonus in place of spell attack modifier. But in the Player Hand Book, spell attack is what you would find. 

So, Spell Attack Bonus and Spell Attack modifier are the same thing. But it would be best if you consider using the Attack Modifier Instead. It is what most beginner Dungeons and Dragons players know. 

Is Adding Spell Attack Bonus To Cantrips Possible?

The answer players need to know is yes. Cantrips do receive a bonus to attack. But you also have to understand that most casters make attack rolls. Why? They use it to determine if their spell’s effect did hit the primary target. 

 A Handy Tip: What does cantrip in the fifth edition of Dungeons and Dragons means? It means a spell the player can cast whenever they deem fit. You can cast it even if you don’t prepare in advance or utilize a spell slot. 

Constant practice is the key here. It has infused the spell in the mind of the caster. The caster now has the required magic to generate the effect now and then. Consider the spell level of the cantrip as Zero (0).  

Is Adding Spellcasting Modifier To Damage A Possibility? 

Understanding and acting by Dungeons and Dragons’ rules make the game even more interesting to play. Players need to understand the techniques and entire process of the game for improved gameplay. 

One crucial question is adding a spellcasting modifier to damage. Do you think this is possible? Well, the answer is quite tricky. But here is what you should know. 

You should never add a spell attack bonus to your rolls’ damage. You have to consider doing so for the attack modifier, mainly when dealing with spells that desire such. Add it to each of the attacks. 

Please note that you’re dealing with three separate attacks if there was a magic missile. 

There is a clear rule for whether one can have a spellcasting modifier added to damage or not. The rule states that the spell description would signal to you whenever the spell’ damage needs you to add an ability modifier. 

Understand that spells differ. And the damage spells can cause varies from one spell to another. But then, you don’t need to have the modifier added to the attack on all of them.  

A Handy Tip: Spells don’t usually need you to add to their damage, your spellcasting ability.  

What Having A Spell Attack Bonus Means

Having the Spell Attack Bonus is a significant step forward for players. The attack modifier is a unique modifier added to the attack roll using your spells. 

How you calculate it is simple. It is the Spellcasting Modifier plus (+) the Proficiency Bonus. 

Again, your class is what determines your Spellcasting modifier. Though we have explained this before, let’s brush through it again.

You can utilize Charisma if you’re a Paladin, Bard, Warlock, or Sorcerer.   


So, what is a spell attack bonus? Everyone knows what a spell is. But the term “Spell Attack Bonus” is a different thing entirely. However, this is a common technical term in Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition. So, if you have encountered this game, you should know what the technical term means. 

Spell Attack Bonus means Spell Attack Modifier. They’re both the same thing, and the latter is what you’ll find in the Players’ Hand Book. The bottom line is that Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition is a fantastic game. There are so many positives to take away from the game. 

Similar Posts:

Leave a Comment