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This Feat makes spells harder for monsters to resist by raising the effective level of the spell to the highest spell level your character can cast, but causes the spell to consume 5 more spell points per level raised.
Example: A Wizard who can cast Level 9 spells could therefore cast a Level 1 spell at the Level 9 Difficulty Class (DC) calculation with Heighten Spell active. Spell DC calculation is: 10 + (spell level) + (pertinent stat modifier). Our example Wizard here uses his Intelligence modifier to determine his DC calculation. So per this example, this Wizard's DC calculation for the Charm Person spell (a Level 1 spell) with Heighten Spell metamagic Feat active would be cast at Level 9. So his DC calculation would be: 10 + 9 (instead of 1) + (INT modifier) and would cost 40 (+8 spell levels times +5 SP for each level) extra Spell Points to cast.
Some classes may take the Improved Heighten enhancement line in order to decrease the SP cost for each spell level that is Heightened. Improved Heighten I decreases the cost from 5 to 4 SP per spell level, while Improved Heighten II decreases the cost to 3. The Wizard class' Capstone Enhancement reduces this cost by an additional 1 SP.
Multiple metamagic Feats may be active simultaneously, but the SP cost is cumulative. Using the Charm Person example above, having both Heighten Spell and Enlarge Spell active will increase the SP cost to (40 + 10) = 50 additional Spell Points.
Advice: The Heighten Spell metamagic Feat benefits low-level spells more than higher-level ones, as the amount Heightened is greater from the lower levels (but thus more costly, too). For example, casting a L1 spell at L9 benefits more than a L8 spell being cast at L9. But in all cases, casting your spells at higher levels is usually a very good thing when trying to overcome the Saving Throws of enemies.
Advice: A Bard or Artificer can only cast up to six (6) spell levels, while a Ranger or Paladin can only cast up to four (4). It is generally not a good idea to take the Heighten Spell metamagic Feat with these classes.
Quirk: The way DDO calculates the DC of heightened spells is somewhat flawed if you have effects that increase or decrease your caster level. For example, a level 15 Sorcerer Fire Savant can heighten his Fire spells to level 9, because his caster level for Fire spells is enough to cast level 9 spells. Conversely, when an Air Savant casts Flesh to Stone (Earth spell), Heighten can actually decrease the DC of the spell because of the caster level penalty to Earth spell.