D&D General "Greater Invisibility lets you ignore gravity" --- Experiments with DnD and AI


Josh Gentry - Author, Minister in Training
So I write stuff for EN Publishing's 3PP DnD stuff, so when news these days about AI being able to help you write articles wholesale and the (disturbing but probably not true) rumors of a sentient AI at Google have me wondering about the applications of AI in RPG writing. Today I made my first experiments and the results are wild.

I can't find the LLM (large language model) I really liked and wanted to work with (I knew I should have bookmarked it!) so I had to Google options to find something that worked. I went with frase, which basically lets you type in a clickbait type title and the model will generate that article.

The first few articles I tried to have the model write were pretty basic. Things like "Five new races for DnD 5e" and "New Capybara race for D&D" didn't get the products I liked. So I did two things:
  • I made the request more basic: 5 new spells
  • I turned up the "Creativity" meter to MAX

And that got me results. I present to you, hilariously unedited, two articles written by frase under my direction.

1. "The Dream of the Compass Rose"

From the description of the spell, the compass rose appears to float about the place where you cast the spell, until you choose a point of origin. The spell then takes effect wherever that point lies. The spell's effects fade after 24 hours, and any magical items affected by the spell become mundane once they're no longer enchanted.

2. "Illusion of Greenery"

This spell creates a number of small illusionary trees within range of the caster. Each tree is covered in lush greenery and looks exactly like its real-life counterpart. Any creatures approaching the illusory trees get caught in their illusions. If a creature touches or walks under a tree whose image isn't being created by the spell, that creature becomes disoriented and believes it's facing away from the sun. Creatures who walk beneath a tree whose image isn’t being created by the spell remain unaffected. A creature that enters the area of a tree created by this spell for the first time loses the benefit of its actions.

3. "Witch Hunt"

This spell sends out magical detections within a 30-foot radius around the caster, looking for magic, evil beings, and undead entities. Detecting something is only possible while casting the spell. When someone detects magic, they roll their Wisdom (Perception) check against your Spellcraft DC (which is normally 20). On a successful save, they know what kind of magic was used, whether it's arcane or divine, which school of magic was employed, and how strong it is. You can use this information to gain insight into the target, including identifying the type of creature involved. If the person fails, they don't learn anything and have disadvantage on the next saving throw they make to avoid becoming charmed.

4. "Celestial Fire"

A burst of flames erupts from the ground around the caster, engulfing all creatures within 10 feet in fire. All creatures take 2d8 points of fire damage per caster level. At higher levels, the damage increases by 1d8 for each additional caster level.

5. "Soothe Animal"

You call forth soothing energies that calm animals. Animals within 60 feet of you that are suffering from fear, exhaustion, hunger, thirst, or need healing receive 2d8 temporary hit points at the start of each of your turns. After three consecutive turns, the spell ends.

Honestly, the new spells the dream of the compass rose and illusion of greenery sound great! Both of these spells are directionally oriented (making them extremely helpful in exploration campaigns / LU A5e), and I for one would hate to be walking under a tree and falsely "believe that I am facing away from the sun" when I wasn't! Celestial fire seems a little weak but honestly, its unique and I am literally gonna try to include it in my current writing assignment. The spells soothe animal and witch hunt seem familiar to spells that already exist, but I could see these spells having traction in the right campaigns! :)

Rating: 8.5 /10. This article doesn't work as intended (it did not write me all new spells per say), but as an extended pitch for new content it's actually wonderful. I can't help but to feel that part of the onus here is on me, and learning how to clarify my expectations with the language model.

1. Invisibility (level 2 spell)

This is the simplest invisibility spell around and is only cast once per day. By casting this spell, you make yourself invisible to others and any magical detection devices. To do this, you must touch a willing creature and concentrate for 10 minutes. After doing this, you have total cover for 10 minutes. You may end this concentration at any time without penalty. If you wish to remain unseen while moving, you need not stop concentrating until you reach your destination. When you stop concentrating, you return to normal visibility, even if you are still walking. You can leave your current location before ending the spell, but this requires additional concentration. If you choose to leave your current location, your movement speed becomes 0, and you cannot attack, cast spells, or use abilities. While under the effects of this spell, you move silently without making noise and are immune to being heard. However, anyone who spends 1 minute searching for you will notice your presence. At higher levels, this spell causes your body to become insubstantial, allowing you to slip through physical objects unnoticed.

2. Greater Invisibility (level 4 spell)

This is a level-up version of the level 2 spell. It is cast once per day. As long as you stay under the effect of this spell, you can create a barrier that blocks out everything except magic (darkvision and truesight). This includes light, sound, smell, taste, temperature, pressure, moisture, electricity, force, and gravity. Your senses work normally while you are under the influence of this spell; however, you feel no pain and cannot speak. Furthermore, your body does not take damage unless you fail a Strength saving throw. Additionally, you learn to control how much of each type of sensory input you allow into your mind. You can increase the amount of sensory information allowed into your mind to the following degrees: -10 percent light, -20 percent sound, -30 percent smell, -40 percent taste, -50 percent temperature, -60 percent pressure, -70 percent moisture, -80 percent electricity, -90 percent force, -100 percent gravity. Regardless of the degree selected, you still receive the same amount of sensory input. The duration of this spell lasts a minimum of 8 hours and a maximum of 1 hour after you finish concentrating on it.

3. Shadow Walk (level 6 spell)

Shadow walk gives you the power to teleport short distances. Casting this spell takes concentration. You start by touching a point on the ground. Then, you focus your attention on that spot and visualize where you want to go. Next, you mentally calculate how long it would take you to get there using your base walking speed. Finally, you mentally project yourself toward that destination using telekinetic powers. Once you arrive, you immediately enter shadow step. At this time, you gain a bonus equal to half your proficiency modifier plus twice your Intelligence modifier on initiative rolls. Also, when you use shadow step, you instantly appear at the destination. Whenever you use [sic]

So I'm literally dead having read this. The model didn't write new spells here, it instead interpreted spells that already exist in the game. Emphasis on interpret. Here the language model helps us to understand the---ahem---implications of these spells in gritty, personal detail. The idea that shadow walk has a basis in telekinetic force or grants bonuses to initiative rolls has no basis in the RAW, but its still extremely creative. I would be thrilled if my 8 to 11-year-old cousin said something like this. Most hilariously, the model seems to be acknowledging the problem of invisibility in fantasy and sci-fi, namely that an IRL invisible human would be blinded because our eyes require opacity for our optic nerves to work. Thus the AI generously adjudicates that a creature subject to greater invisibility can also filter their sensory intake! That said, being able to resist any damage with a successful Strength saving throw is clearly broken. :p

Everyday Rating: 4.5 /10. This person would need sincerity and serious tutelage to play at my table
Humor Rating: 10/10. I want to read humor articles like this all the time. This should become a staple for April Fool's Day observances!

log in or register to remove this ad

An Advertisement