In the game of Dungeons & Dragons 5e, one spell that stands out for its versatile and interesting applications is Locate Creature. This 4th-level divination spell allows players to track a specific creature they know. Imagine being in a deep forest, trying to find a solitary unicorn or maybe sniffing out invisible assassins. That’s where Locate Creature shines. It’s like having a guide that points you in the right direction, telling you the distance and direction to your target, whether it’s east or northwest.
This spell is a rare selection on the spell list for many classes, but rangers, wizards, and druids find it especially impactful. Its thematic touch adds to the adventure, making you feel like you’re actually tracking down creatures with a unique skill set. The spell works by giving you a visual picture in your mind of the target’s position, which is quite broad but enough to set your course. Whether you’re after a specific type or subtype of creature, like a human or half-orc, Locate Creature helps you track them down, even if they disappear from sight. It’s like having your own set of magical weapons in this world of Dragons and things that lurk in the shadows of 5e.
Table of Contents
|Self (1,000-foot radius)
|V, S, M (a bit of fur from a bloodhound or L-shaped metal rods)
|Up to 1 hour, Concentration
|Artificer, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Herald, Wizard
|Detects the direction of a specific, known creature within range, or the nearest creature of a specified kind. Does not work if the creature is running water 10 feet wide or more blocks a direct path to the creature.
Casting and Components
When you cast Locate Creature, it’s like a magic radar. You need to say some words (V), do some hand moves (S), and have L-shaped metal rods or fur from a bloodhound (M). You focus and the spell starts. It lasts as long as you keep concentrating, up to an hour.
How It Works
Imagine you’re in a big game of hide and seek. Locate Creature helps you find who you’re looking for in a big area, like a 1,000-foot radius around you. You need to know the creature or have a good description. The spell then tells you where they are, like south, east, or northwest. It’s not a straight line; it’s more like a trajectory they might be travelling.
What You Can Find
This spell is special because you can look for specific creatures you know or just any nearest type, like a bat, gnome, red dragon, human, or unicorn. Even if they change shape or hide, like wildshaped or polymorphed, you can still get a hint if they’re within 30 feet. But, if they cross running water that’s 10 feet or wider, you lose the trail.
Limits and Uses
Locate Creature is a 4th-level divination spell, a tool for those with arcane and nature knowledge, like Artificers, Bards, Clerics, Druids, Heralds, and Wizards. It’s more than just finding beasts or plants; it’s about sensing the presence and getting a general direction. You can’t be fooled by nondetection spells or tricks. It’s perfect for adventurers who need to find someone or something important.
This spell is like your magic compass, guiding you through Dungeons & Dragons adventures, making sure you’re always on the right path.
Locate Creature is a divination spell used in D&D 5e for information-gathering. It helps full casters like bards, druids, and wizards. At 7th level, they can use this spell. Semi-martial casters like paladin and ranger get it at 13th level. This spell can pinpoint the whereabouts of a single creature or ping the nearest one of a creature type.
In hostile territory, where visibility is low—like a jungle with dangerous displacer beasts or a smoke-filled lava cave with crawling salamanders—this spell shines. You can name a specific type or detect a species. For example, humanoids are lumped together in the monster manual. So, if you’re after goblinoids like Bugbears, goblins, or hobgoblins, it helps find the nearest goblin.
But be careful. It might not work well if you’re trying to avoid being ambushed by the stealthiest of enemies. It might be ineffective if you accidentally alert the bad guy in their evil lair, like the BBEG in dungeons. This spell can also help find an ally who’s hidden, useful in chase mechanics in the game.
Is Locate Creature Worth Taking?
Locate Creature is a divination spell that stands out for information-gathering. It’s great for full casters like bards, druids, and wizards who get it by 7th level. Semi-martial casters such as paladin and ranger can use it by 13th level. This spell can pinpoint the whereabouts of a single creature or find the nearest one of a type.
In hostile territory with low visibility, like a jungle with dangerous displacer beasts or a smoke-filled lava cave with salamanders, this spell can be a game-changer. You can track a specific creature or detect types like aberrations, Beholder, Chuul, or humanoids. For humanoids, lumped together as goblinoids in the monster manual, you could find the nearest goblin.
However, when tracking a specific enemy or familiar quarry, it might give them a head start if they realize they are being tracked. It can be ineffective against the stealthiest enemies or if you accidentally alert the bad guy in their evil lair, like the BBEG in dungeons. But, it can help find an ally who’s hidden, which is useful in chase mechanics in the game.
It’s situationally useful but has its limits. Wizards must remember they have a limited number of 4th-level spell slots. As they transition from 2nd- and 3rd-level spells, they face a power spike with options for battlefield control effects like Evard’s Black Tentacles and utility spells like Greater Invisibility and Polymorph. For cleric class, they can switch out spells from their list by praying to their god for preparation. So, it’s about choosing the right tool for the hunt.
Here are the spell’s limitations.
The range of Locate Creature is quite massive. The spell can target something up to a thousand feet away. That’s about 0.18 miles! Imagine taking a walk at a steady pace; it might take you around three minutes to cover that distance. That’s taller than the Eiffel Tower or as long as an ocean-going cruise ship. So, if your quarry is traveling at a fast pace, maybe on horseback, or you’ve used Expeditious Retreat to cast while moving, they could still slip away in densely packed environments like cities or the wilderness. It gives creatures coming after you in a cramped and confusing chase an edge.
When it comes to shapeshifters, things get tricky. They use polymorph or other shapeshifting abilities to change appearance. They might go invisible, use disguises, or shift their shape entirely. Imagine a dragon, maybe an ancient gold dragon, turning into a budgie perched on your shoulder while you’re hunting it. Then, it’s not just about turning budgies into your targets. Your DM’s rulings might be key, recalibrating the search for a specific physical form. It’s about catching shapeshifting foes like a druid in wild shape, doppelgangers, mimics, or vampires in bat form. Physical disguises and illusion magic become almost useless.
Running water has a thematic role in magic. It’s one of those weird, arbitrary conditions that can thwart a 4th-level spell slot. A clever interpretation of this could mean a bridge or specific terrain might offer tracking options. A cleric might grab or discard this tool from their back pocket depending on the situation.
How to 5e Locate Creature Spell Works?
Locate Creature is a strong spell that lets you quickly and magically transport your sense to find a creature. It’s not just any spell; it’s accessible to those who are educated in the magical arts. It gives you precise yet rough directions. You might learn if the creature is in general direction like north, south, east, or west. It’s helpful in big places like towns and cities or along roads.
At LVL 2, this spell has the capacity to let you sense specific creatures. You need to know unique attributes about them. It could be their intelligence, wisdom, charms, or score. But, there’s a catch. If their score is 8 or less, or if they are undead, elementals, or constructed, the spell might not advance. You get nothing on their location.
To identify the right creature, you might face a requirement. The highest score or most unique feature helps you get close. This is how you use Locate Creature in the game.
How to Use the Spell?
Locate Creature is a level 2 spell with great utility. It helps you find the course and direction of a creature, like North-East or South-West. If the spell points you North but you need to go more eastward, you can dismiss it and re-cast with a slight adjustment. This way, the caster doesn’t fall behind.
While focusing on another creature for purposes like detecting or keeping away, it’s about getting close enough to have a feeling of where they are. There are some prerequisites to detect effectively.
Best Uses of Spell Locate Creature 5e
Locate Creature in 5e is a spell with decent utility. It’s speedy and easy for locating creatures. It has exceptional use when you have abilities or items from your experience. If you’re opposing a caster or dragons in combat, it helps a lot. Also, for finding NPCs on quests or rewards and treasure in a vault, it’s great. When you need to find entrances or keys, and high intelligence, wisdom, or charisma scores help too.
In conclusion, Locate Creature is a versatile and valuable spell in Dungeons & Dragons 5e, offering players a unique advantage in tracking down both foes and allies. Its range, application against shapeshifters, and interaction with environments like running water add layers of strategy to the game. While it has its limitations, the spell’s utility in combat, exploration, and questing makes it a worthy addition to any adventurer’s arsenal, ensuring they’re always one step ahead in their magical journey.
People also ask
How do you track creatures in 5e?
To track creatures in 5e, you describe or name the creature. You get a sense of their direction and location within 1,000 feet. If they’re moving, you sense their movement too.
Can locate creature find a specific person?
Yes, Locate Creature can find a specific person. If you’ve known them or seen them up close within 30 feet, you can find that person or the nearest of their kind, like a human or unicorn.
What is the locator spell 5e?
The locator spell in 5e helps find a specific object you’ve known or seen up close within 30 feet. It finds the nearest one of a particular kind, like apparel, jewelry, furniture, tool, or weapon.
Does locate creature work on dead creatures?
Locate Creature might not work on dead creatures. It depends on your DM. If they’re described or named in a different form, like through a polymorph spell, or as undead, it’s up to the creature type.