D&D 5E Casting Wish To Duplicate Homebrew Spells

Would you allow a tweaked version of a spell to be safely cast with Wish?


Wish can be cast to duplicate any 8th level spell or lower.

Now say somebody wants to cast a low level spell with enhancements that don't appear when upcasting the spell.

Some might say that triggers the danger aspect of Wish.

Others might say that as long as the tweaked version of the spell is not beyond the capabilities of an 8th level spell, it is still a spell that can be duplicated by Wish.

If the DM doesn't allow any spell [IN THE CAMPAIGN WORLD, NOT JUST FOR THE PLAYERS] outside of what's printed specifically word-for-word in books, then it would probably be a no-go to make a homebrew spell duplicated by Wish, but would that really be the norm rather than the exception among DnD campaigns?

The text of Wish itself does not have a specific requirement of spells only from printed books, nor does it require the caster of Wish to know how to cast the duplicated spell.

Where do you stand on this subject?
 

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Mort

Legend
Supporter
Wish can be cast to duplicate any 8th level spell or lower.

Now say somebody wants to cast a low level spell with enhancements that don't appear when upcasting the spell.

Some might say that triggers the danger aspect of Wish.

Others might say that as long as the tweaked version of the spell is not beyond the capabilities of an 8th level spell, it is still a spell that can be duplicated by Wish.

If the DM doesn't allow any spell [IN THE CAMPAIGN WORLD, NOT JUST FOR THE PLAYERS] outside of what's printed specifically word-for-word in books, then it would probably be a no-go to make a homebrew spell duplicated by Wish, but would that really be the norm rather than the exception among DnD campaigns?

The text of Wish itself does not have a specific requirement of spells only from printed books, nor does it require the caster of Wish to know how to cast the duplicated spell.

Where do you stand on this subject?

IMO of course,

If a homebrew spell is deemed, by the DM, to be 8th level or lower - there should be no problem casting it via wish. WITHOUT triggering the special effects clause of the wish.

I mean, the DM has determined that the spell fits under 9th level Wish duplicates any spell 8th and lower, so would be fine by me.

Now, obviously, that's 100% campaign specific. If a player said "ok, I made this 2nd level spell in Matt's campaign..." and one look says the spell is ridiculous? No obligation at all to allow with wish.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
I first thought you meant an established homebrew spell, and wrote a lengthy answer based on that, but on second thoughts it sounds like you want to apply some enhancements on the fly on a lower level spell. In this case I would not allow it without the "stress" effects, as it would not be really "duplicating another spell" but creating something new.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
I first thought you meant an established homebrew spell, and wrote a lengthy answer based on that, but on second thoughts it sounds like you want to apply some enhancements on the fly on a lower level spell. In this case I would not allow it without the "stress" effects, as it would not be really "duplicating another spell" but creating something new.

If that's what he meant (maybe I read the post to quickly) then, yeah - I think that's right.
 

I first thought you meant an established homebrew spell, and wrote a lengthy answer based on that, but on second thoughts it sounds like you want to apply some enhancements on the fly on a lower level spell. In this case I would not allow it without the "stress" effects, as it would not be really "duplicating another spell" but creating something new.

How would you define "established" then? In-game, the wizard may know nothing about the intricacies of faith that enable a cleric to cast divine magic, yet still recreate a spell that normally only clerics would be able to cast, by the description of Wish itself.

If the DM "establishes" that a spell has to simply fit the basic use requirement of Wish, to be a spell of 8th level or lower, then it wouldn't matter if it's a spell with enhancements "made on the fly" because Wish enables the casting of spells that even a wizard has not trained to cast. Yes it's homebrew, but if the parameters of the enhanced spell itself fit within the requirement, which is the breadth of 8th level spells or lower, then I would argue that there's wiggle room for the DM to allow it without penalty.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
How would you define "established" then? In-game, the wizard may know nothing about the intricacies of faith that enable a cleric to cast divine magic, yet still recreate a spell that normally only clerics would be able to cast, by the description of Wish itself.

If the DM "establishes" that a spell has to simply fit the basic use requirement of Wish, to be a spell of 8th level or lower, then it wouldn't matter if it's a spell with enhancements "made on the fly" because Wish enables the casting of spells that even a wizard has not trained to cast. Yes it's homebrew, but if the parameters of the enhanced spell itself fit within the requirement, which is the breadth of 8th level spells or lower, then I would argue that there's wiggle room for the DM to allow it without penalty.

Enhancements "on the fly" are just not established spells - and thus don't qualify - unless it's just flavor or somesuch.

You don't get to say "I want to cast fireball, but it bypasses all resistances and has double the range - we can count that at about 8th level right?" and then cast it as a wish as an "established spell."
 

Enhancements "on the fly" are just not established spells - and thus don't qualify - unless it's just flavor or somesuch.

You don't get to say "I want to cast fireball, but it bypasses all resistances and has double the range - we can count that at about 8th level right?" and then cast it as a wish as an "established spell."

The spell text DOES say: "...you can alter the very foundations of reality in accord with your desires." and there's no fancy setup for casting Wish like so many of the spells it can duplicate, so I'd argue one can indeed say [any spell text in metaspeak even if it's just a published spell with stuff tacked on] as long as it's within the bounds of 8th level spells.

Perhaps not in your campaign, which is your prerogative as a DM, but also not forbidding other DMs from allowing it as per the text of the spell itself.
 


The question in the title and the question in the first post are different. I object. My answers to the two are not the same.

Homebrewed spells? Yes. Tweaks to existing spells? Now you're in 'dangerous wish' territory.

By logic, a tweaked existing spell would be a homebrew spell, since a homebrew spell by definition is a non-[official content] spell, therefore a tweaked existing spell, which is not [official content], IS homebrew.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
The spell text DOES say: "...you can alter the very foundations of reality in accord with your desires."
Yes, that's provided for in part 2 of the spell.

and there's no fancy setup for casting Wish like so many of the spells it can duplicate, so I'd argue one can indeed say [any spell text in metaspeak even if it's just a published spell with stuff tacked on] as long as it's within the bounds of 8th level spells.

Perhaps not in your campaign, which is your prerogative as a DM, but also not forbidding other DMs from allowing it as per the text of the spell itself.

You asked for opinions and are getting them. Feel free to disagree, but no need to ask for opinions and the disparage the ones you don't like!
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
By logic, a tweaked existing spell would be a homebrew spell, since a homebrew spell by definition is a non-[official content] spell, therefore a tweaked existing spell, which is not [official content], IS homebrew.

A homebrew spell is a non-existing spell that the character has developed with the ok of the DM (or that the DM has developed).

There are specific guidelines in the DMG (chapter 9).

Once the spell is created, sure it's homebrew, but it's an existing spell in the campaign world.

Using wish to create a spell "on the fly," that's not covered by ANY other spell effects from ANY spell lists (which is what you seem to be proposing) allows for HUGE versatility. That seems the prevue of the second part of wish.
 

South by Southwest

Incorrigible Daydreamer
By logic, a tweaked existing spell would be a homebrew spell, since a homebrew spell by definition is a non-[official content] spell, therefore a tweaked existing spell, which is not [official content], IS homebrew.
Mm, I suspect what folks are getting at here is that a spell already homebrewed by the DM is very different from a spell tweaked on the fly by a player. I could be misreading them, but that's my sense from the comments. And if that is their point, then I agree with them: if the DM has made a spell and dictated it's L8 or lower, then I figure that's that, whereas if a player on the fly wants to tweak some spell from one of the books, that's a very different proposition. The former is already set as L8 or lower by DM decree; the latter is not.

EDIT: Oops! Just saw Mort's comment. So yeah--I'm with Mort on this.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
Look, many spells are already "I win" buttons. 5e has lessened that, but it's still a thing.

One control on that is D&D spells do exactly what they are supposed to do and no more.

Allowing to break that paradigm by having an infinitely versatile "I win" button is, IMO, too much.

Now, Wish already does that somewhat part 1 by allowing you to cast almost any spell and part 2 of the spell for almost anything. But there are repercussions to using part 2 (potentially REALLY serious ones if you get unlucky) - so there is a built-in control.
 

You asked for opinions and are getting them. Feel free to disagree, but no need to ask for opinions and the disparage the ones you don't like!

I only brought up references and logic to explain my disagreement as part of civil discourse, which was not meant to be disparagement.

If the worry is balance and shenanigans, I think a reasonable compromise would be to set an Intelligence (Arcana) check (or perhaps a different ability modifier) with a reasonable DC depending on what the Wish is actually being used to duplicate. I'd set the DC at 0 if it's something simple like giving Magic Missile an extra 100 feet of range for the cast. For the purpose of flavor, one could say it's how well the result can be visualized or calculated.
 


Mort

Legend
Supporter
I only brought up references and logic to explain my disagreement as part of civil discourse, which was not meant to be disparagement.

If the worry is balance and shenanigans, I think a reasonable compromise would be to set an Intelligence (Arcana) check (or perhaps a different ability modifier) with a reasonable DC depending on what the Wish is actually being used to duplicate. I'd set the DC at 0 if it's something simple like giving Magic Missile an extra 100 feet of range for the cast. For the purpose of flavor, one could say it's how well the result can be visualized or calculated.

Just recognize that if you allow modification of any existing spell or creating a new spell, on the fly - what you are essentially doing is eliminating part 2 of wish: because that's all part 2 really saying - if an existing spell doesn't cover something, you can do it, but there's a cost and a risk.

I prefer leaving that intact!
 

How would any of us prevent another DM from running their table their way?
Exactly. That was the point I was trying to make in response to Mort's "You don't get to say..." which was said in response to me describing that a DM determines what is or isn't established in their campaign world.


Just recognize that if you allow modification of any existing spell or creating a new spell, on the fly - what you are essentially doing is eliminating part 2 of wish: because that's all part 2 really saying - if an existing spell doesn't cover something, you can do it, but there's a cost and a risk.

I prefer leaving that intact!

The Wish spell says "You might be able to achieve something beyond the scope of the above examples." and "the greater the wish, the greater the likelihood that something goes wrong" -- the text itself doesn't say there MUST be a risk. Since the DM has latitude according to the spell text, I think it would be reasonable to allow safe spell tweaking for at least the lower level spells, and perhaps even the mid to higher level spells, depending on WHAT the tweak is.
 
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Mort

Legend
Supporter
The Wish spell says "You might be able to achieve something beyond the scope of the above examples." and "the greater the wish, the greater the likelihood that something goes wrong" -- the text itself doesn't say there MUST be a risk. Since the DM has latitude according to the spell text, I think it would be reasonable to allow safe spell tweaking for at least the lower level spells, and perhaps even the mid to higher level spells, depending on WHAT the tweak is.

You're quoting the line AFTER the second
part of wish, so yeah consequences are intended there!

If you're running a high level campaign, mages are already powerful, this will increase that further.
 

You're quoting the line AFTER the second
part of wish, so yeah consequences are intended there!

If you're running a high level campaign, mages are already powerful, this will increase that further.

Yes they are powerful, but I think that something like a low level spell getting tweaked to have better range wouldn't be all that horrible to give at that point, especially when a 9th level spell slot is used for it. I feel that Wish being 9th level and not spammable like a cantrip does a lot to justify letting the player cut loose with their imagination up to a point.
 

Mort

Legend
Supporter
FYI. the poll is quite misleading because it asks can wish cast a tweaked spell - period. Which of course it should/can.

But your actual question is "can Wish cast a not currently existing spell on the fly and without consequences." I suspect the yeah's would be less!
 

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