Metamagic Adept 5E: DnD Feat Guide

The armored dwarf grins knowingly as the shocked goblin shaman is hit with a fireball despite not seeing any signs of spellcasting, but the halfling sorcerer had taught his adventuring friend well. On the other side of the battlefield an elderly gnome wizard splits one fireball into two and smiles, satisfied at his own metamagic mastery from years of study.

One of the major benefits of feats in 5th Edition DnD is their versatility. The ability to mix a little bit of sorcerer or wizard or fighter to other classes through the taking of a feat.

This not only make the mechanics of the game infinitely more interesting but adds roleplaying or homebrew options for a DM who wants to award great party interaction. Feats from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything are especially known as being versatile, and the Metamagic adept is no exception!

Metamagic Adept Feat Summary: The 5E MetaMagic feat gives magic casters the ability to choose two metamagic options from the sorcerer to apply to their own spells via two sorcery points. The options the player chose can be exchanged for new ones every time an ability score improvement is reached.

This is a feat I like because it flows well both mechanically as well as offering exceptional role playing value. Not to mention it is a very useful feat for any spellcaster, including the sorcerers themselves.

sorcerer in winter woods
You’re not dressed like a sorcerer…er….oh no….

Breaking Down the Metamagic Adept Feat

Let’s take a look at the exact working of the Metamagic Adept feat to see what it brings to the table. Be careful to note the necessary prerequisite for taking this feat.

Directly from the Player’s Handbook:

Prerequisite: Spellcasting or Pact Magic feature

You’ve learned how to exert your will on your spells to alter how they function:

  • You learn two Metamagic options of your choice from the sorcerer class. You can use only one Metamagic option on a spell when you cast it unless the option says otherwise. Whenever you reach a level that grants the Ability Score Improvement feature you can replace one of these Metamagic options with another one from the sorcerer class.
  • You gain 2 sorcery points to spend on Metamagic (these points are added to any sorcery points you have from another source but can be used only on Metamagic). You regain all spent sorcery points when you finish a long rest.

Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, p. 80

Let’s dive into the specifics and do a deep dive breakdown of each of the benefits of the metamagic feat.

Benefit #1: You can learn two metamagic options of your choice from the sorcerer class.

Metamagic can be extremely powerful and used to make a magic caster far more effective against the challenges that come up to mid or high levels. Various metamagic options (I go into detail on each one below) include twinning a spell so one cast becomes two, silent casting which lets you get around counterspell, and a variety of other excellent options.

This is a powerful tool that allows you to customize your magic casting as you want it. Whether a wizard, sorcerer, warlock, bard, or other casting class, this an interesting feat that gives a ton of flexibility in how you can turbo charge your casting whether its doubling a the cast of an attack spell or making sure no one notices the bard doing bard sh*t because he/she doesn’t have to speak to do it.

Excellent and powerful feature.

Benefit #2: You gain two sorcery points to spend on metamagic, which act as other sorcery points but can only be used for metamagic (no exchanging for spell slots).

This is more the mechanical aspect explaining how it works. More necessary than a bonus of any kind. Except for sorcerers, who actually do get a bonus here since those two sorcery points are added to their others (though these two still can’t be used for anything other than metamagic.

Benefit #3: You can exchange a chosen metamagic effect any time an Ability Score Improvement levelup takes place.

This is a benefit that shouldn’t be overlooked. The ability to exchange them keeps them versatile as the metamagic feats that are most useful for a character or party can definitely change based on campaign, level, and enemies being faced. That split spell might be devastating early but not that important late.

Being able to switch them out to the most useful one is a powerful benefit that adds versatility to an already powerfully versatile feat.

5E Classes That Should Take the MetaMagic Adept Feat

While there are multiple classes that should at least consider the metamagic adept feat, there are three that should almost always take it, or at least have this on the short list of always strongly consider, and it’s the two major classes that make sense plus one that makes sense when you think about it.

The 5E sorcerer should always take the metamagic feat. Why? Simple: two MORE metamagic options that they can always use, and two more sorcery points they can add to the lot. Considering the sorcerer already has metamagic, adding two more at an early level and you can supercharge your sorcerer build to give them extra damage or battlefield control that even a bard would be envious of.

The Wizard should always consider it. While the charisma score being used for many metamagic features can be an issue, there are useful ones where this doesn’t apply and charisma is usually not the wizard’s dump stat. They have the freedom to take feats or decide on making charisma the second stat if that could be useful. Adding a bit of sorcery to the wizard is a winning combination.

The bard is a NATURAL fit for this metamagic feat. Not only is versatility and battlefield control in the bard’s wheelhouse, and adding metamagic only further increases both for the bard, but the two classes both use charisma as a casting stat. Which means all the metamagic options built for the sorcerer work perfectly for the bard, too.

Charisma is a pretty great casting stat.

These three classes can do amazing things with this feat and further amplify their own strengths and unique traits in ways that can be devastating to anything a DM throws at the party.

5th Ed Classes that should always take the MetaMagic Adept Feat:

  • Bard
  • Sorcerer
  • Wizard

5E Classes That Should Consider Taking the MetaMagic Adept Feat

The Warlock has many different feats to consider regardless of build, and the versatility of the class means that it’s hard to say what type of feats should “always” be picked or “rarely” picked since with warlocks “There’s a build for that!”

Add metamagic adept to that list of feats that the warlock needs to consider. They share the same casting stat as sorcerers which opens up all of the metamagic options to them without having to risk any disadvantageous rolls or an underpowered version of what the sorcerer actually gets. Add a couple of metamagic options to all the invocations available to warlock and talk about f’ing versatility.

There are so many options to make these work together in interesting ways.

Artificer is the other one to look at. This is an interesting class in the campaigns where it’s allowed, and there’s a lot to focus on, but having some versatile metamagic options to go with the spell list is never a bad thing and can make an interesting class to play even more so. When you have a jack of all trades class, adding a few extra tricks is never a bad call and this feat does just that.

5th Ed Classes that should consider taking the MetaMagic Adept Feat:

  • Artificer
  • Warlock

5E Classes That Should NEVER Take the MetaMagic Adept Feat

There are several classes where the feat just doesn’t make sense. The obvious ones are barbarian, fighter, monk, and rogue because they simply don’t have the prerequisite to even pick up this feat. That makes this a pretty easy elimination for those classes. (Note: Eldritch Knight Fighters and Arcane Trickster Rogues are exceptions and should be moved up one).

Many of the magic casters in this list simply don’t have enough room for feats compared to what they can use, or are built with certain common spells that metamagic doesn’t necessarily help (Paladins and Rangers, for example). Clerics are an example of a class that always could use more feats and stats for a build, so while there are some great builds out there that could use metamagic, it’s not going to hit the list without sacrificing something that’s likely even better.

These classes have their own skills and feats, and while metamagic is versatile and does some really amazing things, it’s not for everyone.

5th Ed classes that should never take the MetaMagic Adept Feat:

  • Barbarian
  • Cleric
  • Druid
  • Fighter (Excepting the Eldritch Fighter)
  • Monk
  • Paladin
  • Ranger
  • Rogue (Excepting the Arcane Trickster)

Best Metamagic Sorcery Feats to Take as Metamagic Adept

As with any guide to “best” feats or best “metamagic options,” this can change based on opinion or build, but based on the years of in-game experience among so many D&D players and DMs over the year, there is a general order of which ones are top tier versus which options are situational.

Even many of the “weak” metamagic options are pretty good but they just don’t hold up compared to the other options available, especially when looking at average impact per average campaign.

So here are the metamagic feats in a rough order of the best to worst for most builds to consider. The full information on each of these can be found in the Player’s Handbook on page 102.

Subtle Spell

With a smart veteran DM this metamagic bonus is a godsend because for counterspell to work, they have to see you cast it. With subtle sell, you don’t need to speak or have the verbal components. And yes, casting with subtle spell means that if you are stuck in a magical dome of silence you can still cast since you don’t need to speak with this awesome metamagic.

Twinned Spell

Outstanding option to give some extra oomph to spells that usually only target a single opponent. This can be especially deadly in a boss fight when you can hit the big bad and a minion doing damage to party members.

Empowered Spell

Charisma-based casters rejoice with this metamagic. Re-roll damage from an attack roll on a spell up to the charisma modifier. If you botch the first roll, just go ahead and re-roll those ones and twos to up the damage.

Transmuted Spell

Allows you to change the damage type of a spell to a short list of alternative options. Change a spell to an enemy’s weakness or barring that, from the original damage type it is immune or resistant to into something that does full damage. Extremely useful bit of metamagic.

Distant Spell

Double the range of a spell to do your best eldritch sniper impression. Or hit an opponent with a touch spell from 30 feet away. Very useful…and has some very interesting applications from utility, healing, or manipulation spells that usually require a touch.

Seeking Spell

Miss on the roll for an attack spell? This is your magical chance for re-roll to turn that miss into a hit. This is the one metamagic you can use on a spell even if another metamagic effect has already been applied.

Quickened Spell

This moves the casting time to a bonus action, allowing that double magic cast on the same turn. With the right spells that is a devastating 1-2 combo.

Extended Spell

Make the magic keep on going longer than ever. Good feat, through from a practicality standpoint not as good for 1-minute battle spells as most fights end well short of 10 rounds, but very useful in many other areas.

Careful Spell

Situationally this is great…especially for casters who want to help their party stay safe while launching fireball in closed spaces,

Heightened Spell – Is the worst because since it costs 3 sorcery points, even with this feat non-sorcerers can’t use it.

Final Feat Grade for 5E MetaMagic Adept

Metamagic Adept Feat Grade: B+

Is the 5E Metamagic Adept Feat Worth It?

The metamagic adept feat is a very good feat that provides a lot of versatility and power, especially for full casting classes that aren’t already committed to 2+ stats and multiple feats. This versatility is what made sorcerers in 5E so interesting and this feat allows a player to share that versatility with others or even supercharge a sorcerer build.

This is a great feat for certain classes that really opens up the possibilities and is right on that B+/A- border, with the biggest thing keeping it out of the A is how many of the metamagic options are tied to charisma score. For bards and warlocks, go ahead and move the grade up, and for sorcerers this is an A-grade, must-have feat.

Metamagic Adept Feat FAQ

Can a sorcerer take the metamagic adept feat?

Sorcerers can absolutely take the metamagic adept feat and they should. This allows them to get even more metamagic features to use, making them even more terrifying in their spell-casting and manipulation versatility.

How often can you use metamagic?

Each metamagic requires a certain amount of sorcery points (1-3) to use. As long as the sorcerer or other caster has the sorcerer points, they can invoke metamagic while casting as they wish.

Can I target the same creature with twinned spell?

No. As written, the twinned spell metamagic must target two creatures, it cannot be used to target one creature twice.

Does twin spell work with Eldritch blast?

In levels 1-4 it does, because it takes one beam and creates two. Once the cantrip changes at level 5 then it has multiple targeting beams so the cantrip then becomes ineligible to use this metamagic.

Can a wizard learn metamagic in 5E?

A wizard may only learn metamagic by taking the metamagic initiate feat.

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