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Silvery Barbs 5e D&D Guide

Silvery Barbs 5e D&D Guide

Silvery Barbs is a 1st-level utility or supportive spell. It is part of the Bard, Sorcerer, and Wizards spell lists.

Silvery Bards shows the power of roll manipulation, even when it’s only a level 1 spell.

See the Player’s Handbook Description Below:

Silvery Barbs 5e

1st-level Enchantment

Casting Time: 1 reaction, which you may take when a creature you see within 60 feet of you succeeds on an attack roll, ability check, or saving roll.

Range: 60 feet

Components: V

Duration: Instantaneous

Using magic, you distract the creature triggering your reaction and turning its momentary uncertainty into encouragement for another creature.

The triggering creature must now reroll the d20, using the lower roll instead.

Then you can choose a different creature that is visible and within range of you (you can also choose yourself).

The chosen creature will have an advantage on its next attack roll, ability check, or saving roll made within 1 minute.

Note: A target can be empowered only once by this spell at a given time.

Classes That Can Pick Silvery Barbs

Traditional classes such as the Bard, Sorcerer, and Wizard have access to this spell at level 1.

Subclasses like the Eldritch Knight (Fighter) can unlock and use this spell when they become level 3.

Arcane Trickster (Rogue) can choose three 1st-level Wizard spells (two must be from the Enchantment and Illusion schools) as they adopt this archetype.

Is Silvery Barbs Good in 5e?

Silvery Barbs is a relatively new spell introduced by the Strixhaven: Curriculum of Chaos supplement.

From its release until this very day, players are still baffled how this overpowered spell made it into D&D!

Advantages – Silvery Barbs

Answer Hostile Offenses

Silvery Barbs uses the luck of an enemy’s attack roll and strengthens the offensive capabilities of an ally.

Players can answer an enemy’s attack’s damage by buffing their allies and striking back harder.

Since most frontline characters have higher AC stats, there is a chance that an enemy’s attack didn’t even reach them, which provides more value.

Note: It doesn’t matter if the reroll is higher than the previous roll, as enemies must still use their lowest roll.

Reaction Based

Reacting to an enemy is superior to answering an enemy after the damage has been done.

Before an enemy has the chance to complete their spell, a player can react using Silvery Barbs.

The enemy will be left without their luck, and the spellcaster will reward a chosen ally an attack advantage.

A complete 180 occurs in a matter of seconds, where the creature went from having the high ground to now being counterattacked because of his luck!

One Component

Silvery Barbs only has a Verbal component when being cast. Therefore players have more leniency.

Being severely crippled can count against being able to cast Somatic spells, while not having the intended items needed for a Material spell can be catastrophic.

This makes the spell seamless and relatively easy to use.

Decent Range

Lower-level spells with a decent range (30-60 feet) are better since most spellcasters casting Silvery Barbs will be squishy.

A low-range spell could endanger your spellcaster and prevent them from adventuring for a few days in the worst cases.

Disadvantages – Silvery Barbs

Useless Against High Rerolls

Using Silvery Barbs against a high roll is the intended way to use the spell. It can save your party unnecessary damage and keep them in the battle for longer.

However, if luck isn’t on your side and the enemy rerolls the same number, or higher, Silvery Barbs’ usefulness is halved.

You will still be able to give an ally the attack advantage, but you didn’t achieve the intended reroll.

Extremely Boring

There are many powerful spells in D&D. However, most at least try to make their gameplay enjoyable. They give clever combinations, quirky ways of using the spell, or intended mishaps.

When it comes to Silvery Barbs, there’s nothing. Yes, it achieves two actions; however, nothing makes it stand out.

It isn’t a basic damaging spell, so it should have some roleplay aspect, but it just doesn’t.

When Should I Use Silvery Barbs?

Silvery Barbs isn’t a normal utility support spell; even though it functions similarly to them, it can turn the whole tide of battle. It works perfectly when cast after an enemy achieves a great roll.

React Against Crits

Silvery Barbs is labeled as a reaction spell. Meaning players can react to enemies rolling crits. This can completely negate an enemy’s momentum as they must reroll.

On the other hand, the player can now choose someone to have an attack advantage on their next attack roll.

Meaning that because the hostile creature got lucky and rolled a crit, an enemy will now be able to be buffed.

If this isn’t a reason for enemies to avoid rolling crits, then I don’t know what is.

Debuffing Enemies While Buffing Allies

Silvery Barbs doesn’t only trigger against highly effective attack rolls. It can also trigger with normal attack rolls, ability checks, or saving rolls.

Players can use their enemy’s luck against them by always casting Silvery Barbs when the enemies are at their best.

It will weaken the enemy and give an ally an attack advantage.

The affected party member can successfully damage and eradicate the intended targets thanks to the attack advantage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Silvery Bards Better Than Shield?

If the enemies are constantly hitting you, then Shield would be better. However, if the battle isn’t as direct, save your reaction and use it to reroll crits.

What Triggers Silvery Barbs

Silvery Barbs can easily be triggered if the target succeeds on a roll.

Can I Use Silvery Barbs on My Turn?

Silvery Barbs has a specific trigger that can occur on your turn or anyone else’s. Just remember that you are only allowed one reaction per turn.

Final Thoughts

Silvery Barbs shouldn’t be overlooked by anybody able to cast it.

Its effects at such a low level are insane, especially when looking at the low-level creatures you will face. It will be as if your party is immortal!

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[…] Silvery Barbs is a very complicated spell, but when used well, it can change the course of a battle. […]