Fire Bolt is a cantrip belonging to the Artificer, Sorcerer, and Wizard spell lists.
This is a standard offensive spell with long-range and decent damage.
The Player’s Handbook specifics are as follows:
Fire Bolt 5e
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 120 feet
Components: V, S
You hurl a scrap of fire at a target or object within range. Do this by making a ranged spell attack against the intended target.
If hit, the target will take 1d10 fire damage. If Fire Bolt hits a flammable object, it ignites, keeping in mind that it isn’t being worn or carried.
At Higher Levels: This spell’s damage increases with 1d10 when you reach its 5th level (2d10), 11th level (3d10), and 17th level (4d10).
How Does Fire Bolt Work 5e?
Fire Bolt is an evocation spell with a maximum targeting range of 120 feet. It requires players to perform verbal and somatic actions to be cast.
Casters must first make a ranged spell attack, adding their spellcasting ability score modifier to the roll and casting the spell.
If the spell hits, the target will take 1d10 fire damage. The spell will not set the target or their clothes ablaze; players can ignite flammable objects.
A barrel of fuel, a keg of rum, or a dry cloth can all be targeted and set aflame.
At level 5, Fire Bolt will get its first increase in damage (+1d10), increasing yet again at levels 11 and 17. At level 17, its damage has increased to 4d10 from 1d10, now dealing decent fire damage for a cantrip.
Is Fire Bolt a Good Spell?
When looking at Fire Bolt, we must compare it to other cantrip spells. Similar cantrip spells include Eldritch Blast and Chill Touch.
All three spells have a range of 120 feet, use the same components and require one action to be cast.
The main difference between these spells is their damage types, a topic that will become crucial to answering our question.
Fire Bolt uses fire, eldritch blast uses force, and chill touch uses necrotic damage.
Firebolt comes last when basing my answer solely on these damage types.
So When Is Fire Bolt Useful?
Fire bolt is handy against enemies who are vulnerable to fire damage. Most earth-bound elementals or enemies like Treants, Twig Blights, Awakened Shrub/Tree, and Ice Mephits have vulnerabilities to fire.
Even though many creatures resist fire damage, many humanoids have lower resistances and fewer immunities than demons, fire elementals, and giants.
Using Fire Bolt against resistant enemies isn’t as bad; however, always stay away from creatures immune to fire.
Wasting an action can end badly for you!
Limitations of Fire Bolt
The most obvious weakness of Fire Bolt is its damage type. Along with damage types like poison, fire is known as one of the most resisted damage types in D&D.
Almost all demons, devils, fire giants, fire dragons, and fire-related elementals are immune to fire.
Many others are resistant to its damage making the overall damage dealt lower.
Even though Fire Bolt provides some decent stats, players are urged to use spells with damage types, including force, radiant, psychic, necrotic, or thunder damage.
Not only will they be more reliable, but your damage will be more consistent.
Can Fire Bolt Be Twinned?
Twinning requires a spell to only target one creature and not have a range of ‘self’.
Players must spend sorcery points equal to the spell’s level to target a second creature with the same spell (1 sorcery point is used if the spell is a cantrip, scaling as the levels increase).
Fire Bolt meets all these requirements meaning the spell can be twinned.
Spells similar to firebolt mentioned in the ‘Is Fire Bolt a Good Spell’ section can also be twinned.
Twinning spells, especially lower-level ones, can increase a mage’s damage by a ton.
Since Fire Bolt is a cantrip, the resources used are entirely overshadowed by the usefulness and damage of the spell.
Which Classes Can Cast Fire Bolt?
Artificers, Sorcerers, and Wizards have access to Fire Bolt and can make it a part of their spell line-up if needed.
If one of these mages knows the firebolt spell, they can cast it at level one. This is because Fire Bolt is a cantrip.
Players need to look at the spell modifiers for each class to know what modifiers to invest in if they want to take Fire Bolt as a spell.
All three classes add their proficiency bonus to their spell attack modifier. Artificers and Wizards add their intelligence modifier, while Sorcerers add their Charisma modifier.
Subclasses Able To Use Fire Bolt
In D&D, specific subclasses can use the spells of other classes, even if they don’t belong to their spell lists.
Arcane Trickster, Eldritch Knight, and Arcana Domain are the three subclasses able to obtain Fire Bolt.
Arcane Trickster is a subclass of the Rogue class. It allows players of this subclass to choose two cantrips from the Wizard spell list that suits their playstyle.
Eldritch Knight is a subclass of the Fighter class. It enables players to choose multiple spells from the Wizard spell list that serves their needs.
Arcana Domain is a subclass of the Cleric class. It allows a Cleric to choose two Wizard spells that become and are used as Cleric spells.
Races Able To Use Fire Bolt
Two races can choose Fire Bolt as their cantrip; High Elves and Half-elves (Having Moon Elf or Sun Elf descent).
Both races’ spell attack modifiers include their proficiency bonus and Intelligence modifier.
High Elves are deeply rooted in magic. Many players playing as High Elves may wish to show their supreme magical talents by choosing a Wizard cantrip.
Even though Fire Bolt can be replaced with more reliable spells, its usefulness in certain situations (where enemies are vulnerable to fire) is immense.
Its low cost, decent damage, and extremely long range make this an ideal cantrip spell for long-range spellcasters.
Players wishing to be genuinely ridiculous might even use spell sniper to double (240ft.) the range of Fire Bolt; if that isn’t game-breaking, then I don’t know what is!