Some people just want to watch the world burn, and that includes the world of Faerun. There are plenty of fire spells in the world of D&D, from burning hands to the ever-popular fireball, but one of the ones introduced in the Exemplars of Evil is the Ring of Fire spell. This spell certainly allows you to burn the world down.
How do you use this spell? Why is it found in the Exemplars of Evil book? And who would be the best to use this sort of spell? This is our Ring of Fire spell guide.
What Is The Ring of Fire?
This spell, according to the Exemplars of Evil book, has these effects:
- Conjuration (Creation) [Fire]
- Level: Druid 9, Sorcerer 9, Wizard 9,
- Components: V, S, M (One Basalt Disc)
- Casting Time: 1 round
- Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
- Effect: 10-ft.-radius area of lava; see text
- Duration: 1 round/2 levels
- Saving Throw: Reflex partial
- Spell Resistance: No
You create an area of lava. All creatures in the area that make successful Reflex saves take 1d6 points of fire damage plus 1 point per caster level. Creatures that fail their saves take 1d6 points of damage per caster level, to a maximum of 20d6 points. Creatures that take at least 1 point of damage from the ring of fire take an extra 1d6 points of fire damage each round for 3 rounds.
Each round after the first, the area of lava expands by 10 feet, becoming a 20-foot-radius ring on the second round, a 30-foot-radius ring on the third round, and so on. As the ring of fire spreads, all creatures in its area must make new saving throws as described above.
When the spell’s duration expires, the lava cools rapidly. All creatures in the area at that time are held fast and cannot move until they make a successful Strength check or Escape Artist check against the spell’s DC. Breaking free of the lava is a full-round action.
Let’s break the spell down. First, it is a conjuration spell, focusing on creation and fire. It is a spell that is a level nine spell, and can be cast by Druids, Sorcerers, and Wizards. It does require vocal, somatic, and material components, with the material component being one Basalt disc. It takes one round to cast and has a range of 100 ft +10 ft per level.
Next, you turn the floor into lava around an area, and all the creatures within it make reflex (Dexterity) saves. If they pass the saves, they take 1d6 points of fire damage plus 1 point per caster level. If they fail, they just take 1d6 per caster level.
Check out our ultimate guide to DnD Rings.
Looking At An Example
Let’s say a level 11 Wizard casts the spell on three orcs. Two orcs fail their reflex save, and one succeeds. The wizard rolls a 3 on his 1d6 for the orc that passes, so it takes 14 (11+3) fire damage. The two orcs that fail their saves take 11d6 points of damage. Since all three orcs took damage, they will continue to take 1d6 points of damage until 3 rounds have passed.
The ring of fire will expand from 10 ft, to 20 ft, to 30ft. It will last for 5 rounds thanks to the Wizard’s level, and if any orcs are caught in the spell again, they will need to make saving throws again. Once 5 rounds have passed, the lava cools and any creature inside makes strength or escape artist checks to escape the cooled lava.
When Should You Use This Spell?
While at first glance this spell seems very powerful and something that can make mincemeat out of any enemy in Faerun, you need to look at when you would use the spell. For one thing, the expanding lava can easily cut off your melee-oriented allies and either leave them in danger of being exposed to the lava or unable to attack.
Plus, some enemies might be fast enough to get out of the lava’s range, especially since it only moves 10 ft a round. Since your allies need to be careful around the spell and its expanding radius as well, it is not the most useful spell if you have a very melee-oriented party. Especially since at 9th level, it will expand up to 40ft in 4 rounds, and will only go up by 10 ft every two levels.
It’s best to use this spell whenever you have a large area that can be covered in lava, and possibly very slow enemies that can’t avoid that lava. This spell can easily whittle down the hitpoints of creatures like giants and other massive monsters, especially if you use other spells to hold them in place first.
This spell should be one of those last resort spells that is used whenever one large creature or an army of smaller creatures is headed your way. The best part of this spell is the massive damage that can be done no matter if they fail or succeed with the save or not. They are either taking 1d6 + caster level damage, or caster level D6 of damage. Plus, if they take damage from the spell they take 1d6 worth of fire damage for three rounds.
Finally, once the lava stops expanding and cools down, those still within the radius are trapped inside the cooled lava and need to break free with a strength check to resume fighting. Since the strength check is a full-round action, those stuck will be at an even greater disadvantage.
Who Can Use This Spell?
Druids, Sorcerers, and Wizards who have the ability to cast level 9 spells can cast Ring of Fire. Interestingly, unlike some other spells, they cannot be used with additional spell slots. So you cannot cast the spell with a level 10 spell slot or anything else other than a level nine. Also, if you are playing a druid, then it can be interesting if you choose to use the spell. If you are the type of druid that doesn’t want to burn down the very forest that they draw their powers from, you could have some reservations about using the spell yourself.
Also, keep in mind that evil wizards, sorcerers, and druids can use this spell against your party as well. If your DM is playing with the rules of the Exemplars of Evil handbook, then they might end up using it.
All About Balsat Discs
Balsat is a rock in both 5e and the real world, where they are formed from the cooling of lava with rock made from magnesium and iron, and more than 90% of the volcanic rock on Earth is basalt. These rock types also aren’t found solely on earth, but also on various other planetary bodies.
Balsat is pretty common around volcanic eruptions on Earth, and while there aren’t any official rulings of Balsat in the world of Fareun, we can assume that it is about the same. With it being pretty common you would probably be able to find the Balsat discs in most areas, especially around volcanos or volcanic eruptions.
Additionally, there are two different types of monsters that are officially made of basalt that your players can harvest the stone from. Basalt Warhounds are large elemental dogs, and Basalt Garguiles are elegantly crafted gargoyles. Both of these creatures could be encountered around lava, and their remains harvested for balsat discs. Then you will have more than enough to cast the Ring of Fire Spell as much as you wish.
You could encounter the two official Basalt enemies in any place near lava. Perhaps on islands, near volcanoes, and inside a fire elemental or fire wizard’s lairs. Of course, you can also homebrew other Basalt enemies as well, as practically any creature can be carved out of stone and animated.
Basalt enemies are pretty similar to their normal counterparts. A Basalt dog is similar to a regular dog, and a Basalt ogre is made pretty similar to a regular ogre. DM-wise, the stats, and abilities are the same as their living counterparts.
The only thing that is different is the vulnerabilities and immunities of the Basalt creatures. Stone and other Basalt creatures are resistant to damage from bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage from any attacks made from nonmagical weapons. Additionally, they are immune to fire damage and poison damage but are vulnerable to the cold.
Ring of Fire FAQ:
Question: Do I Have To Allow It As A DM?
Answer: Ring of Fire does come from the Exemplars of Evil book, and most DMs are pretty different when it comes to have supplemental sources. Some really enjoying bringing in 3rd party and supplemental content for their games, while others want to keep things down to the Player’s Handbook, The Monster’s Manual, and the Dungeon Master’s Guide mostly for convenience and simplicity.
If you are a DM, you get to choose. Plenty of DM’s have house rules that will ban certain feats from the table, or they will talk to their players and let them know what type of campaign they are running. If you are running a campaign in a town or city, or you are planning to have a lot of dungeon crawls then Ring of Fire Spell is probably not the best spell for your campaign.
If you are planning to have a campaign in a large open world with a lot of traveling and overland travel in open areas, then this is a good spell to use. It’s up to you and your players as well as your party composition to see if this is a spell you want to use. Still, try to have this discussion with your players before your party reaches 9th level, as they will be eligible for the spell.
Question: What Should My Verbal and Somatic Componets Be?
Answer: The official wording for the spell from the Exemplars of Evil book states: You utter deep, rumbling tones as you make arcane gestures over the basalt disc, causing it to glow white-hat and evaporate in your hand. When you finish, the ground tears open, and hot lava wells up from the depths of the earth.
So the somatic movement should have something to do with the balsalt disc, whether you are running your hands over it, breaking it in your fist, throwing it to the ground or doing something else with it. It’s consumed whenever you cast the spell, so do whatever you want. A druid might do something less flashy than a sorcerer would, while a wizard might decide to chant mystical words of power.
You can roleplay this to your heart’s content, especially since it is a 9th level spell, so go a little crazy with it. It’s no fun to just say ‘I cast Ring of Fire” and let the floor turn into lava around your enemies without a little flare and showmanship right?
What Can Defeat Ring Of Flame?
Other than typical dispel magic spells and anti-magic fields, here are some of the more exotic ways you can defeat Ring of Flame, whether you are a DM or a player. For example, flight capability. If you are fighting enemies or are a player class that can fly, you can easily hover or fly above the lava and not only keep attacking, but you also won’t take any damage or be restrained by the lava.
Additionally, if you have a fast movement speed, simply outpacing the lava flow can be a good idea. Even if you get hit by the first blast, making sure you are at least 20 feet away before the turn ends will make sure that you aren’t having to continue to make the saving throw and also have to risk being restrained by the cooled down lava.
Finally, if you are fire-resistant or wearing fire-resistant gear, then that can help, especially if you have the high dex needed to handle the saving throws.