Easter Eggs in Dungeons & Dragons Spell Components
Alrighty, we got a fun one here. If you’re anything like me, you enjoy a good/bad joke. Whether it's a pun, a knock-knock joke, or a complex story with a fantastic punchline. Regardless, I love a good laugh and I suspect you do too. Or you wouldn’t have clicked on the link to get here. :) But what is better than a good joke? A great Dungeons & Dragons joke. This is something Wizards of the Coasts knows a little something about. While there are a plethora of references in their disclaimers and in other locations in their books. Today I wanted to share one of my favorite and subtle nods that can be found in the material components part of spells in the Player’s Handbook. It’s fantastic to me, as in my experience, these often get completely overlooked or forgotten. Because of that, these little tidbits aren’t always caught. Below is a list of clever material components that just make me laugh.
Minor Illusion - Fleece - Pulling the wool over their eyes.
Aid: A tiny strip of white cloth - Ya know...like a band-aid.
Antipathy/sympathy: Vinegar or honey - Because you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
Confusion: Three nutshells - Much like the common shifting item under the shells(cups).
Detect Thoughts: Requires a copper piece - Penny for your thoughts?
Dragon’s Breath - A hot pepper - Haha, get it? Because it makes your mouth burn like it’s on fire.
Erupting Earth - A piece of obsidian - Obsidian is cooled, hardened, highly dense volcanic rock.
Fireball: A tiny ball of bat guano and sulfur- Ingredients for making black powder.
Passwall: Requires Sesame seeds - Open Sesame, old magical words to open doors.
Lightning Bolt: A bit of fur and a rod of amber, crystal or glass - Used to create static electricity.
Water walk: Piece of cork - Cork floats in water.
Water Breathing- Piece of straw or reed - Much like cartoons where they make improvised snorkels.
Message - Copper wire - Phone lines and telegraphs use copper wire to send messages.
Tasha’s Hideous Laughter - Requires tart and a feather - Feather tickles people and a pie to the face is an age-old clown joke.
Gust of Wind - Legume(beans) - Beans, beans the magical fruit that makes you toot.
Animal Friendship: A morsel of food - Give your dog a treat when they listen to you.
Polymorph - Cocoon - Caterpillars turn into butterflies via metamorphosis inside cocoons.
Sleep - A pinch of sand - Like the Sandman.
Slow - a drop of molasses - The old “You’re slower than molasses.”
Tongues - Small clay model of a ziggurat - The ancient tower of Babel.
Stinking Cloud - rotten egg or skunk cabbage leaves - Because they both smell awful.
Sunbeam - Magnifying glass - Who remembers making an insect death ray with these?
Arcane Eye - A bit of bat fur - Bats see without seeing via echolocation.
Feeblemind - Handful of clay, crystal, glass spheres - The spell makes you...lose your marbles. Get it? ROFL.
Suggestion - Snakes tongue and a honeycomb or drop of sweet oil - Being honey-tongued and having a well-oiled tongue are euphemisms for being seductive and benign snaked tongue means you're an expert and lying and getting people to do what you want.
Fear - A white feather or hen heart - It turns you into a chicken, a common term for a coward.
Darkvision - Dried Carrot- The vitamin A and beta-carotene contained in carrots can help eyesight
Maddening Darkness - Pitch mixed with mercury - Mercury is toxic, can cause mood swings, nervousness, irritability, insomnia tremors, and more.
Hypnotic Pattern - Glowing stick of incense - Pretty much sparklers or a vial filled with phosphorescent material - a rave glow stick.
Whirlwind - a piece of straw - This one might be a stretch, but I’m certain it's referencing the whirlwind that took a small country girl into the magical land of OZ.
What do ya think? Did you know about these? Are there any I missed? Let me know in the comments. Share with me all the fun nods in the Wizards of the Coast books.
PS, I don’t care what anyone else says. That is certainly a beauty and the beast reference in the Monster Manual.
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