Haste might be the best buffing spell in the game. It functions well in support of effectively any class, with some benefiting even more. The spell does have a nasty after-effect, so hopefully, the 10 rounds are enough to get the job done, and the caster doesn’t lose concentration.
The rules for Haste can be found in the Players Handbook on page 250.
Transmutation 3rd Level
Casting Time: 1 Action
Range: 30 Feet
Components: V, S, M (Ashaving of licorice root)
Duration: Concentration (1 Minute)
Choose a willing creature that you can see within range. Until the spell ends, the target’s speed is doubled, it gains a +2 bonus to AC, it has advantage on Dexterity saving throws, and it gains an additional action on each of its turns. That action can be used only to take the Attack (one weapon attack only), Dash, Disengage, Hide, or Use an Object action.
When the spell ends, the target can’t move or take actions until after its next turn, as a wave of lethargy sweeps over it.
Haste has some interesting information in the rules provided. Most importantly, the aftereffect of the spell. Losing an entire turn in the middle of combat could be detrimental.
10 rounds are a long time, but the opportunity for the spell to end based on a concentration fail is serious. The risk might be worth the reward as the target effectively gains an additional turn each round.
Is Haste Good?
Haste is as good as the caster’s concentration. It is a great buff spell in adding extra actions for a significant duration.
The opportunity to add an armor class bump alone is significant. When you add the bonus movement and advantage to dexterity-saving throws, it can really make a difference. The obvious extra attack is a good boon, and the other actions aren’t bad either.
The Haste spell comes with a pretty significant downside, though. When the spell ends, the target can’t move or take actions. Normally this wouldn’t be a concern as most encounters don’t go 10 rounds. However, if the caster fails a concentration check, the spell ends – triggering the effect.
Another point of concern worth mentioning revolves around the concentration on a buff spell itself. Haste is a buff spell with concentration; not terribly uncommon. The problem is that the caster, usually the wizard, is now tied up with that spell. They really shouldn’t draw attention anyway, but now it is critical. Plus, they are limited in the spells they can cast.
What Classes get Haste?
The base classes that get Haste are the Artificer, the Sorcerer, and the Wizard.No surprise there.
There are quite a few subclasses that have access to the spell as well:
- The Eldritch Knight Fighter
- The Arcane Trickster Rogue
- The Grassland Druid
- The Glory Paladin
- The Vengeance Paladin
- The Horizon Walker Ranger
The subclasses require several levels in the subclass to reach Haste for many of them. So, multiclassing is probably out of the question for the most part. It would be a huge advantage as a rogue or druid to be able to cast Haste on yourself and free up your spell caster. Also, the caster is probably going to have someone else in mind already.
Can Haste be Twinned?
The rules for Twin Spell in the sorcerer metamagic abilities read as follows:
When you cast a spell that targets only one creature and doesn’t have a range of self, you can spend a number of sorcery points equal to the spell’s level to target a second creature in range with the same spell (1 sorcery point if the spell is a cantrip).
To be eligible, a spell must be incapable of targeting more than one creature at the spell’s current level. For example, magic missile and scorching ray aren’t eligible, but ray of frost is.
Haste meets the requirements set up by the description of the Twin Spell ability. It only targets one creature and does not have a range of self. Haste does not have an option to target additional creatures at any level, so that is not a concern either.
This means that Haste can be twinned. The downside is that if a caster loses concentration, the spell ends on both targets. This would cause both characters to suffer the negatives from the end of the spell resulting in both creatures being unable to move or take actions for one round.
Haste is interesting in several ways. It is a good buff spell that can be used on yourself or allies. It also offers a quite serious effect when the spell ends, in losing actions and movement for a turn. If combat is over, this may not be that detrimental.
However, if the spell ends due to lost concentration, the target is a sitting duck. Pairing this with potentially being cast on a tank can cause some serious complications.
Like most of the spells in the game, Haste is well-balanced overall and has some obviously good uses.