Wow, they just keep giving Wizards more exciting tools to ruin people’s day, huh. The Explorer’s Guide to Wildemont improves the arcane power of this class with Dunamancy, an ancient magic that holds over space and time. As part of this system, Chronurgy Wizards can learn an 8th level spell which literally causes a creature to be thrust into the realm between space and time. That’s right… Breaking the timelines isn’t even 9th level. So, let’s explore this paradoxical rift that you just opened. Reality Break, as written, is only available for Wizards with the Chronurgy tradition. Talk with your GM if you want this in the spellbooks of other subclasses. Let’s dive in with our Reality Break 5E Guide.
Reality Break 5E Guide
- Spell Level: 8th
- School: Conjuration
- Casting Time: 1 Action
- Range: 60 ft
- Components: V, S, M (A crystal prism, not consumed, no gp cost)
- Duration: 1 Minute (Concentration)
- Class: Wizard
You toss someone between realities. They make a Wisdom save, or can’t take reactions until the spell ends. It also needs to roll a d10 to determine what actually happens to it.
|1-2||Vision of the Far Realm. 6d12 psychic damage, stunned until end of turn.|
|3-5||Rending Rift. Dexterity save. 8d12 force on a fail, half on a success.|
|6-8||Wormhole, Teleported 30 ft to a square of your choice. 10d12 force, knocked prone.|
|9-10||Chill of the Dark Void. 10d12 cold, blinded until end of turn.|
They get a Wisdom save at the end of each turn to negate the rest of the duration
A really interesting – though not quite unique – effect! Let’s talk about it.
So, this spell only guarantees that they can’t take reactions. That’s not awful, but it’s far from an 8th level spell. So, this d10 is really important. Let’s go through them.
Vision of the Far Realm is a stun attached to a Wisdom save, skipping their turn. It’s also a little burst of damage, which is pretty nice. You’re quite happy with this.
Rending Rift… We’ll talk about Rending Rift in the “Cons” section.
Wormhole is absolutely fantastic. You force a 30 ft teleport, which could mean putting an enemy caster into a dreadful situation. Or, you could put a devastating melee opponent far away from you. The knocked prone effect solidifies this as the strongest roll; they either take massive penalties or need to spend their move action to stand up. This can be really brutal for the melee combatant mentioned above, but only a small detriment to the caster that is now between your two Strength-based allies. The amount of crowd control you get with this is phenomenal, and it’s 30% likely.
Chill of the Dark Void is fine. You get a really good 10d12 (average 65) damage, and they are blind. Most enemies don’t have a good way to get around blindness, since a lot of spells specify that you must see them. And most martial characters are in REAL big trouble.
And this lasts every turn for 1 minute – without using your Concentration – if they keep failing Wisdom saves. That means you could get a lot of stuns or teleports, and the damage will rack up really fast.
Rending Rift is actually the only thing keeping this spell from greatness. 30% of the time, you give your opponent an additional save, where they can avoid taking some of the spell’s damage. It does nothing to affect their turn, even if they fail the save. It is the only effect that deals damage, rather than damage plus something else. If you roll this effect every turn, this spell becomes pretty useless.
And… You could, theoretically, get this effect every turn. That is, as long as your opponent doesn’t save against it.
When Should You Use Reality Break?
Reality Break is a weird spell. Like a surprising amount of Dunamancy spells, it is somewhere between hard crowd control and good damage. Because it is best when it lasts 10 rounds, use it at the start of the fight to heavily influence one opponent. You’ll deal between 6d12 and 10d12 damage per turn, and have a 70% chance to make their turns much, much harder. The longer you keep this effect active, the better.
It also doesn’t affect anyone other than a single target. That can be rather minor, since you would want to use some magic to crowd control other enemies. But you can use lower level spell slots to Fireball or Lightning Bolt, while you make sure the boss’s turns are stuck in eternal limbo. Or… minute-long limbo.
When Better Options are Available
Like we said, this spell is between heavy crowd control and good damage. If you need to keep the boss in one place, and away from spellcasting or swinging a sword, Hold Monster is much more likely to succeed. If you don’t want to see that opponent for 100 rounds, then putting a creature with low Intelligence in a Maze is next to guaranteed to keep them out of the fight; that doesn’t even give them a Will Save, and keeps them away for a minimum of 1 round.
If you’re trying to finish off a deadly creature, Reality Break only does so much damage, since it spreads it out over multiple turns. For pure damage, there are better spells, such as Disintegrate or Finger of Death.
Honestly, this spell does a really good job as a “start of the fight” effect. Consider adding it to your late-game Wizard spellbook, should you try Chronurgy out. We like this one enough to rank it in our Top 10 Best Wildemount Spells.