Use Magic Device


Rules Questions


I want to make sure I understand how the Use Magic Device skill works.

Any non-caster like fighter or rogue who wants to use a wand needs to make a UMD check.

A bard who wants to use a wand of Create Water needs to make a UMD check since it's not on the bard spell list.

A bard with Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does not need to make UMD check?

A bard without Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does need to make a UMD check?

A cleric who wants to use a wand of Dancing Lantern does not need to make a UMD check?

A cleric with an evil alignment use wants to use a wand of Celestial Healing must make a UMD check?

Any caster with a CL of 3 who wants to use a wand with a CL 5 spell must make a UMD check?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

If the spell is on your character’s spell list they can cast it without making a UMD check, not knowing it or not being high enough level to cast it doesn’t matter.

Spell Trigger wrote:
Spell trigger activation is similar to spell completion, but it’s even simpler. No gestures or spell finishing is needed, just a special knowledge of spellcasting that an appropriate character would know, and a single word that must be spoken. Spell trigger items can be used by anyone whose class can cast the corresponding spell. This is the case even for a character who can’t actually cast spells, such as a 3rd-level paladin. The user must still determine what spell is stored in the item before she can activate it. Activating a spell trigger item is a standard action and does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

Grand Lodge

Heather 540 wrote:

I want to make sure I understand how the Use Magic Device skill works.

Any non-caster like fighter or rogue who wants to use a wand needs to make a UMD check.

Correct. That said, there are ways for non-casters to get spells, even if they're limited (See: Minor/Major Magic rogue talents) which allows character to use those specific spells as wands without needing UMD checks. It's also worth noting that, while Rangers and Paladins do not have caster levels from levels 1-3, they can still use wands of spells on their class spell list.

Quote:
A bard who wants to use a wand of Create Water needs to make a UMD check since it's not on the bard spell list.

Correct.

Quote:
A bard with Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does not need to make UMD check?

Correct. However, spells that aren't normally on a class' spell list aren't added to your spell list until you actually get the spell. For example, a Level 1 Flame Mystery Oracle has to use UMD to activate a wand of Burning Hands, but a level 2 Flame Oracle (who gets Burning Hands as a bonus spell at level 2) CAN use a wand of Burning Hands without needing to make a UMD check.

Quote:
A bard without Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does need to make a UMD check?

Correct.

Quote:
A cleric who wants to use a wand of Dancing Lantern does not need to make a UMD check?

Correct.

Quote:
A cleric with an evil alignment use wants to use a wand of Celestial Healing must make a UMD check?

Correct. Because of the alignment restrictions, a Good cleric effectively has no Evil descriptor spells on their spell list. This includes all variations of the alignment chart. Note that using an Evil descriptor spell/spell trigger item usually doesn't violate a good aligned deity's moral code, but it's a line you must toe carefully.

Quote:
Any caster with a CL of 3 who wants to use a wand with a CL 5 spell must make a UMD check?

Incorrect. For example, level 1 Cleric who gets a wand of Summon Monster IV can use the wand without any check required.


Rysky wrote:

If the spell is on your character’s spell list they can cast it without making a UMD check, not knowing it or not being high enough level to cast it doesn’t matter.

Spell Trigger wrote:
Spell trigger activation is similar to spell completion, but it’s even simpler. No gestures or spell finishing is needed, just a special knowledge of spellcasting that an appropriate character would know, and a single word that must be spoken. Spell trigger items can be used by anyone whose class can cast the corresponding spell. This is the case even for a character who can’t actually cast spells, such as a 3rd-level paladin. The user must still determine what spell is stored in the item before she can activate it. Activating a spell trigger item is a standard action and does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

Yeah, it's not a case of 'spells known', it's a case of 'Spells on the class list'.

A bard can use a wand of cure light wounds, even if it's not a spell he normally has learned. As long as the spell is a 'Bard Spell', then he's able to use the wand.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Quote:
Quote:
A bard without Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does need to make a UMD check?
Correct.

Incorrect, the spell is on the Bard spell list so they can cast it without it being a spell they know.


Ok, thanks everyone.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Heather 540 wrote:

Thank you. :)

And just to make sure I'm reading it right:

Prepared casters like druids and clerics don't need to make a UMD check to use a wand of any spell on their class list unless prohibited by alignment.

Spontaneous casters like bards and sorcerers must have the spell on their Spells Known list or make a UMD check.

Wizards are prepared casters but have limited spells known. They need the spell on their Known list to use a wand without a UMD check, right?

No, spells “known” does not factor into it in the slightest.

Only if it it is on the spell list is what matters. Bards and Sorcerers can use any wand containing a spell from their spell list without a UMD check just the same as a Wizard doing so.

Grand Lodge

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Quote:
A bard without Alter Self on her Spells Known list who wants to use a wand of Alter Self does need to make a UMD check?
Correct.
Incorrect, the spell is on the Bard spell list so they can cast it without it being a spell they know.

Whoops, totally misread that. Yes, because Alter Self is on the normal bard spell list, you can use a wand of it, even if you don't personally know the spell.


Understood. As long as a spell is on the character's class list, they don't need to make a UMD check. The exception being spells with alignment descriptors that the character is unable to cast normally. Thanks, everyone.


hi, I've just a short question:

my alchemist got the necklace "Hand of the mage", as he doesn't have the spell on its list, with which DC could he use this item?

Thanks in advance


Hand of the mage does not require UMD, and can be used by any character regardless of class. UMD is used to allow you to use magic items you normally would not be able to do because you don’t have the ability, or meet the criteria. For example it allows you to use a wand if you are not a spell caster, or if the spell is not your classes spell list. Hand of the mage allows the user to use mage hand at will.

You can also use it to emulate a class feature, ability score, race or alignment you don’t have. For example if an items can only be used by a good character, or an elf UMD can allow you to fool the item long enough to activate it.

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