So, it’s time for a little bit of real talk…
Warlocks are CONSTANTLY getting bashed because of their limited spell slots. I mean, without fail it comes up in just about any discussion involving the class.
On one hand, sure, it’s a valid point. But the thing that so many people forget about is just how incredibly awesome Eldritch Invocations are.
So it’s time to clear up the confusion and talk about the single greatest reason to play a Warlock in 5e!
This is the guide to Eldritch Invocations for Warlocks in D&D 5e.
We’ll cover what Eldritch Invocations are and how to use them in addition to answering some frequently asked questions. From there, we’ll look at the best Invocations for Warlocks!
What Are Eldritch Invocations in 5e?
Eldritch Invocations represent powerful bits of arcane knowledge that you have gained as a Warlock. Whether these were granted to you or the result of your own study, your Patron has guided you towards these abilities.
Most of the Warlock Invocations allow you to cast certain spells or mimic spell effects. Some can be cast once per long rest while others can be cast as often as you’d like.
Others provide helpful passive effects like being able to see normally in darkness (magical or otherwise), increasing the range or effects of your Eldritch Blast, or adding bonus damage to your attacks.
Naturally, the more powerful Invocations require you to be of a certain level to take. Some also require you to have taken a specific Pact Boon at level 3.
Psst! You can read more about Pact Boons here.
Invocations you take become immediately usable for you.
Frequently Asked Questions about Invocations in 5e
With that said, let’s get into the most common questions players typically have about Warlock Invocations.
If you have a question that isn’t answered here, reach out in the comments and I’ll answer and add it to the list!
When Do You Gain Eldritch Invocations?
Warlocks first gain access to Eldritch Invocations when they hit level 2.
However, the Warlock is not limited to just 2 Invocations for their entire adventuring career! As you level up, you’ll be able to take more invocations every few levels.
You can see the table under the next question to see which levels let you gain more Invocations.
How Many Eldritch Invocations Do Warlocks Get?
Warlocks get 2 Invocations at level 2 but they get more as they continue to level up.
The most Eldritch Invocations a Warlock can have is 8 once they hit level 18. As you might expect, this is also when the strongest options are readily available to you.
You can check the table below to see how many Invocations you get at each level.
|Warlock Level||Invocations Known|
|2 – 4||2|
|5 – 6||3|
|7 – 8||4|
|9 – 11||5|
|12 – 14||6|
|15 – 17||7|
|18 – 20||8|
You can also take the Eldritch Adept feat to gain an extra Invocation if you are so inclined, though I’m not sure it’s worth it in most cases.
Can You Change Your Chosen Invocations?
Sometimes you’ll take an Invocation and it won’t really work as well as you hoped it would. Other times, you might just need to make some room for your newer, stronger Invocation options.
Each time you gain a new Warlock level, you can replace one of your known Invocations with another!
Because some Invocations have level requirements, it’s not a bad idea to keep a small “hit list” of Invocations you want at certain levels. That way you can be sure to take them as soon as they become available without needing to dig through various rulebooks every time you level up!
Related: The Ultimate Guide to Warlock Patrons in D&D 5e
How Often Can You Use Invocations?
The Invocations’ descriptions tell you how often they can be used.
Most fall into one of three categories:
- Cast once per long rest using a Warlock spell slot
- Cast at will without expending a spell slot
- Passive ongoing effect
The first two categories are pretty self-explanatory, but the passive effects can be a little confusing though.
Some Invocations grant you abilities like being able to read all writing or gaining proficiency in certain skills. These immediately take effect and are “active” until you replace the Invocation.
Others expand on your other abilities. For example, Thirsting Blade lets you make two attacks with your pact weapon while Eldritch Spear increases the range of your Eldritch Blast to 300 feet.
It can be easy to forget about these more passive Invocations, so make sure that you keep them in mind. Otherwise, you’re doing yourself a massive disservice!
Can You Take the Same Invocation Twice?
There really isn’t a reason to take the same Invocation twice. The specific wording of the Invocations is what prohibits you from doubling the effect that an Invocation provides.
For example, Thirsting Blade specifically allows you to attack twice when you take the Attack action. Taking the Thirsting Blade Invocation twice would not allow you to attack a third time.
Similarly, most Invocations allow a special casting of a spell. Whether it says you can cast it once or at will, you gain nothing from taking the Invocation twice.
As rules-boss Jeremy Crawford explained on Twitter, you aren’t meant to take an Invocation more than once.
If you simply must take an Invocation twice, you only gain the benefit once which makes it pretty pointless.
Do You Have To Multiclass To Gain Invocations?
Invocations are pretty awesome and it’s not uncommon for characters to multiclass a couple of levels in Warlock to gain access to some.
For those who want to dabble in some eldritch knowledge, Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything introduced a new feat called Eldritch Adept. This feat allows you to learn one Eldritch Invocation of your choice from the Warlock class without having to multiclass.
If you’re a Warlock, you gain an extra Invocation that you meet the prerequisites for.
If you’re not a Warlock, you gain an Invocation but will need to be especially aware of the prerequisites. An Invocation that requires you to have made a Pact Boon demands that you make a serious connection to a Patron for at least a couple of levels first!
The Best Invocations for Warlocks in D&D 5e
There are more than a few Eldritch Invocations for Warlocks to choose from!
Believe me, you’re not alone if you’re experiencing a bit of “analysis paralysis” looking at the various options available to you!
So hopefully this roundup of the best Invocations for Warlocks in D&D 5e will help you by showcasing some of the best options.
I figure it’s best to separate the top Invocation picks by Pact Boon to keep the comparisons as even as possible.
Naturally, these entries are just my own opinion. Nearly every Invocation has the potential to be character-defining. If you have others you’d like to add to the list or have questions about one, feel free to say hi in the comments!
Related: Ranking Every Warlock Subclass in 5e!
Invocations for Blaster Warlocks
Eldritch Blast is the peanut butter to the Warlock class’s jelly. It’s hard to imagine one without the other!
So of course there are options to help you make the most of your most valuable cantrip!
While any Warlock will benefit from these, those that tend to especially favor blasting enemies like Genie Warlocks or Fiend Warlocks will especially like these!
Sweet, simple, and a high impact make Agonizing Blast the must-have for any Warlocks who want to focus on blasting their enemies down from range.
With this Invocation, you can add your Charisma modifier to the damage dealt by your Eldritch Blast. That adds up quickly!
The Repelling Blast Invocation lets you knock enemies back 10 feet when you hit them with your Eldritch Blast. Combine this with AoE spells like Hunger of Hadar or natural terrain hazards like pits, cliffs, or lava and this can be simply disgusting.
Keep in mind that multiple beams from your Eldritch Blast as you level up means that multiple targets are getting knocked back. If you really want to send a specific enemy on a trip across the battlefield, you can also use all of your beams to knock them back 10 feet per beam!
Feel free to yell “this is Sparta” a la “300” when you yeet enemies to their certain doom. Sure, Leonidas just kicked the guy in the movie, but if he could blast people with lasers you know he would have done that instead…
Grasp of Hadar
The Grasp of Hadar Invocation works exactly like Repelling Blast except it pulls them towards you.
It’s the same concept: pull them into an AoE spell or natural hazard to really ruin their day.
Multiple beams hitting a single creature means you can move them up to 10 feet per beam that hits. Otherwise, you can spread the punishment around and pull multiple enemies into your dastardly trap.
Invocations for Blade Warlocks
Prefer getting up close and personal in combat? These invocations are for you!
Hexblade Warlocks in particular should look at these, though they’re good options for any Warlock who takes the Pact of the Blade.
Smiting isn’t just for Paladins anymore!
This Invocation lets you spend a spell slot when you hit an enemy with your pact weapon. The target takes 1d8 force damage plus an extra 1d8 for each level of the spell slot.
Not to cheapen the experience, if the target is Huge or smaller, you can knock them prone if you want. No save or anything!
Improved Pact Weapon
This Invocation lets you use your Pact Weapon as a spellcasting focus so you seamlessly hack and blast your way to victory in combat.
You’ll also gain a +1 to your attack and damage rolls with your weapon unless it’s a magic weapon that’s already getting a bonus to those rolls.
Lastly, you’re not just limited to melee weapons when you summon your weapon. You can also summon bows and crossbows for when you need to tell somebody what time it is but they’re just too far away.
The Lifedrinker Invocation adds extra necrotic damage equal to your Charisma modifier to attacks with your Pact Weapon.
Piling this on top of your existing damage bonuses means it’s a little description with a big effect!
Most martial classes gain the Extra Attack feature which lets them attack twice when they take the Attack action.
With the Thirsting Blade Invocation, you can now join the cool kids in making two attacks when you use your Pact Weapon!
It’s not always only about damage output!
Eldritch Invocations open up some extra utility options that can be worth their weight in gold. These give you defensive buffs and new ways to solve problems you encounter on your journey.
Armor of Shadows
Warlocks might typically be hardier than some other spellcasters, but they’re still on the squishy side.
Armor of Shadows lets you cast Mage Armor on yourself at will for free. This Invocation saves your spell slots and quite possibly even your life!
Book of Ancient Secrets
Taking the Pact of the Tome greatly boosts your performance as a spellcaster and this is a prime Invocation to grab if you’ve taken that Pact Boon!
You’re a ritual caster now!
Even more, you instantly gain two level 1 spells with the Ritual tag. As long as you have your Book of Shadows handy, you can cast these as rituals!
As you come across more spells on your journey, you can add those with the Ritual tag to your Book of Shadows. Just make sure that the spell’s level is equal to or less than half of your Warlock level (rounded up) so that you’re able to transcribe it when you get time.
Keep in mind that the process of transcribing the spell requires both time and special inks. For each level of the spell, the process takes 2 hours and costs 50gp for the materials.
The Devil’s Sight Invocation is a supercharged version of Darkvision.
Typically, creatures with Darkvision see everything in black and white but still can’t see through magical darkness.
You see normally in all darkness (whether it’s magical or not!) out to 120 feet!
Few things will get past you now!
Gift of the Ever-Living Ones
If you’ve taken the Pact of the Chain, this Invocation helps you get the most value possible out of healing spells, potions, and hit dice.
As long as your familiar is within 100 feet of you, the Gift of the Ever-Living Ones lets you treat all dice as if they rolled their maximum value when determining how many hit points you recover.
How’s that for some efficient healing?
Investment of the Chain Master
Another great Eldritch Invocation for Warlocks who take the Pact of the Chain is Investment of the Chain Master.
Think of this as a level up for your trusty familiar!
Channeling some of your power into your little friend, they gain FIVE bonuses!
- Your familiar gains flying or swimming speed (your choice) of 40 feet.
- As a bonus action, you can have your familiar take the Attack action.
- Your familiar’s attacks count as magical when overcoming immunity/resistance to nonmagical damage.
- If your familiar forces a target to make a saving throw, it uses your (much higher) spell save DC.
- When your familiar gets hit, you can use your reaction to give it resistance against the damage.
Mask of Many Faces
The Mask of Many Faces lets you cast Disguise Self on yourself at will without using spell slots.
I’m sure you won’t use this to cause any chaos at all, right?
With the Relentless Hex Invocation, you form a bond between yourself and whoever you have put a curse upon. This might be the Hex spell or a different Warlock feature like Hexblade’s Curse or Sign of Ill Omen.
As long as you can see the target, you can use a bonus action to teleport up to 30 feet to an unoccupied space within 5 feet of them.
Now, obviously, this is fantastic for closing the distance on an enemy that’s trying to fall back or retreat. It can also be good for launching a surprise attack on an enemy.
However, you could also use this to get yourself out of a sticky situation…
Let’s say you’ve fallen into a trap and aren’t doing well at trying to climb out before it seals you in. In a pinch, you could throw a curse on your ally above the trap so that you can teleport to safety.
Your friend might have a few questions after this maneuver, but at least you’re still around to answer them, right?
Sculptor of Flesh
Few spells can be as useful to keep up your sleeve as Polymorph.
Sculptor of Flesh lets you cast Polymorph once per long rest with a Warlock spell slot.
Need to temporarily shut down a particular threat like a rampaging Hill Giant? Turn them into something harmless like a turtle until you can focus all of your attention on them.
Find yourself locked in a jail cell? Turn into a snake or something that can squeeze through the bars!
If you’re feeling extra spicy, you might decide to turn into a Giant Ape and go King Kong on your unfortunate captors!
Shroud of Shadow
Turn yourself invisible at will without expending any spell slots.
Sure, you can’t get this Invocation until level 15, but how awesome is this?!
Unless you’ve specifically chosen to be seen by canceling the invisibility or doing something (like attacking or casting a spell) that would break it, nobody will even know you’re there!
Well, unless they’ve got some crazy Perception or something like Blindsense.
But, still, there are very few situations where being able to go completely invisible won’t be a colossal benefit to you!
Conclusion – Eldritch Invocations for Warlocks in D&D 5e
Hopefully this article has helped you understand how Eldritch Invocations work in D&D 5e!
Like I said at the beginning of this article, it’s easy to pick on Warlocks for their limited spell slots. I’ve done it too!
But Eldritch Invocations do a ton to expand what the Warlock is capable of.
In trying to highlight the best Invocations for Warlocks, I found myself including more on this list than I had originally intended to.
What can I say? There are just so many great options!
Understanding how your Eldritch Invocations work is a key part of playing a Warlock character. If you still have any questions or thoughts on top Invocations that Warlocks should consider, let me know in the comments!
Looking for the ultimate resource for playing a Warlock? Check out the Complete Class Guide to the Warlock in D&D 5e!
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