Shield 5e: Mechanics and Guide to Using the Spell

Casting Time

1 reaction








Sorcerer, Wizard




1 round




Verbal, Somatic

Spell Description:

An invisible barrier of magical force appears and protects you. Until the start of your next turn, you have a +5 bonus to AC, including against the triggering attack, and you take no damage from magic missile.

1st level, Abjuration, Buff

Level: Sorcerer (1), Wizard (1), Hexblade (1), Artillerist (3), Battle Smith (3), Eldritch Knight (3), Arcane Trickster (8), Bard (10, Magical Secrets)

Materials Required: None

Number of Targets: 1

Die Type: None

Number of Dice: None

Damage Type: None

Save: None

Damage On Successful Save: None

Statuses Inflicted: +5 AC to self

Status Duration: 1 round

Affected By Cover: No

Advantage: None

Disadvantage: None

What Is Shield?

Shield is a 1st-level Abjuration spell cast as a reaction to being hit with an attack or targeted by the Magic Missile spell. It grants the caster +5 AC and nullifies all damage from the Magic Missile spell.

Who Can Cast Shield?

Sorcerers and Wizards can cast Shield starting at 1st level as the spell is on their spell lists. Hexblade Warlocks also have Shield on their expanded spell list and can begin casting it at 1st level.

Artillerists and Battle Smiths will also be able to cast the spell with their expanded spell list starting at 3rd level. Eldritch Knights will be able to add Shield to their spell list starting at 3rd level when they first get access to spellcasting, but Arcane Tricksters will need to wait until 8th level before they can add Abjuration spells to their spell lists.

Bards can always take the spell with their Magical Secrets feature, which is available to all Bards by the 10th level.

When and Where Should I Cast Shield?

Shield is a spell best used to mitigate large damaging attacks when the caster rolls high but still does not make the cut to avoid the damage.

Why Should I Take Shield?

Shield is a good spell for melee spell casters who will be in imminent danger of taking damage from enemies. In particular, Eldritch Knights and Hexblade Warlocks may see excellent uses for the spell as they will be fighting primarily in melee range with weapons.

Common Questions About Shield