Rod of the Pact Keeper 5e
Published on November 28, 2022
If you’re looking to give your warlock a boost, the rod of the pact keeper is the simplest way to enhance your eldritch abilities.
Eric Deschamps - Wizards of the Coast - Rod of Ruin
What is a Rod of the Pact Keeper?
A rod of the pact keeper is a magic item in D&D fifth edition (5e) that is made to boost the eldritch powers of warlocks. As this isn’t a legendary item, there is very little in-game lore surrounding the rod of the pact keeper, so creating the story behind the item will be left up to the DM. Has your warlock’s patron bestowed a gift upon their loyal subject? Or maybe they found it on the corpse of a long-dead warlock who was trapped in a dungeon?
Either way, once your warlock attunes to this energizer battery for their warlock powers, they will keep it close at all times.
What Does the Rod of the Pact Keeper Do?
When attuned by a warlock, this rod provides a bonus to spell attack rolls and spell saving throw DCs for your warlock spells. The rod comes in 3 rarities, which provide an increasing bonus tied to how hard the rod is to find:
- Uncommon: +1
- Rare: +2
- Very Rare: +3
The rod of the pact keeper also comes with a secondary ability, allowing you to regain 1 warlock spell slot as an action as long as you’re holding the rod. You can use this property once per long rest.
Is Rod of the Pact Keeper a Good Magic Item?
The rod of the pact keeper is probably the most effective item for a warlock. While there are other magic items that might be more fun, getting a straight bonus to your spell attacks and saving throws, combined with an extra spell per long rest, is incredibly powerful. The bonus to spell attacks is especially potent on warlocks, who get to make them frequently thanks to their eldritch blasts.
When it comes to taking an action to regain a spell slot, warlocks are best using this feature after combat if they aren’t able to take a short rest. This will allow them to recharge their spell slot while not missing a coveted turn in the initiative.
Warlocks don’t normally need to hold weapons or shields (unless they’ve taken the Pact of the Blade Eldritch Boon), so the free hand and attunement slot needed to wield the rod of the pact keeper is a small price to pay for an incredibly efficient boost to your spellcasting.
What Builds Want a Rod of the Pact Keeper?
Just about every warlock out there will absolutely love a rod of the pact keeper. The only time this may not be as effective is with a hexblade, warlock/paladin multiclass, or other martial warlock build. While the rod of the pact keeper is still a definite bonus to these builds, if they’re making more attack rolls with weapons, they may benefit more from a +1 sword or even armor to help them stay alive in combat. They are also less likely to have a hand free, instead choosing to wield a sword and shield to make them more effective in combat.
Rod of the Pact Keeper Price
Rods of the pact keeper come in 3 different rarities, which means this item is a suitable reward at just about any tier of play. Going by the table in the Dungeon Master’s Guide, the different rarities should be awarded at certain levels and, if they are being purchased, should have an increasing cost accordingly:
- Uncommon (+1): 1st level or higher – 101-500 gp
- Rare (+2): 5th level or higher – 501-5,000 gp
- Very Rare (+3): 11th level or higher – 5,001-50,000 gp
These guidelines are incredibly vague, but are somewhat improved by the Magic Item Pricing found in Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, which would price the rarities as follows:
- Uncommon (+1): 1d6 × 100 gp
- Rare (+2): 2d10 × 1,000 gp
- Very Rare (+3): (1d4 + 1) × 10,000 gp
If the player has the necessary tools (such as proficiency in Arcana) and is looking to craft their own rod of the pact keeper, they can do so by spending the following amount of time and gold:
- Uncommon (+1): 2 workweeks + 200 gp
- Rare (+2): 10 workweeks + 2,000 gp
- Very Rare (+3): 25 workweeks + 20,000 gp
In Published 5e Adventures
If you’re playing through an adventure and hoping to run into a rod of the pact keeper, you can find them at the below locations:
- Acquisitions Incorporated: In the upstairs bedrooms of the Little Inn of Horrors
- Curse of Strahd: In the treasury of Castle Ravenloft (K41)
- Spelljammer Academy: As a graduation gift in the fourth adventure.
- Tales from the Yawning Portal: In area 46 of the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan
Rod of the Pact Keeper 5e FAQs
Does rod of the pact keeper count as a focus?
Warlocks can use any arcane focus as a spellcasting focus. This includes a crystal, orb, rod, staff, or wand. So yes, warlocks can use a rod of the pact keeper as a spellcasting focus.
Does rod of the pact keeper need to be held?
Yes, the magic item specifically states you need to be holding the rod to benefit from the bonus to your spell attack rolls and saving throws, as well as to regain a warlock spell slot as an action.
Does rod of the pact keeper add damage?
No, the rod of the pact keeper only adds a bonus to spell attack rolls and saving throws. It doesn't effect the damage of your warlock spells.