[RPG] Is counterspelling a warlock different


My question is about something that happens in S2E98 of Critical Role (potential spoilers if you haven't watched it yet).

In the episode, the wizard attempts to counterspell a dimension door spell. The counterspell is 4th-level just like dimension door normally is; however, the DM mentions that because the caster of dimension door is a warlock, it is a 5th-level dimension door spell, and the wizard still has to make the spellcasting ability check to see if counterspell works.

Is there some official rule that would explain why counterspelling a warlock would be different? This could of course be some house rule, but I don't see any hints that this show would have such a house rule.

The warlock is an NPC; his eldritch blast gives 3 shots, so he's at least 11th level. The player characters' party is 11th level.

Best Answer

The warlock 'upcasts' naturally

Warlocks don't have the options to choose what level of spell slot they use to cast a spell, as other casters do. Their Pact Magic feature assigns a single spell level for all their spell slots, and all their spells are cast at that level.

The Warlock Table lists what level their spells are cast at, which depends on their class level.

Normally, dimension door is a 4th-level spell if cast at its lowest level. However, depending on the level of the warlock, they could be casting at a higher level because all of their spells are cast at that level.

So it's not so much that it's the warlock that makes the difference, but the spell slot level that's used, which depends on the warlock's class level.