Quote Originally Posted by Bogard View Post
Hi all! Phantasmal Force is a spell that lets illusionists mimic another spell, and even deal the proper damage if the victim believes the real spell was cast.
Well, specifically that is what the spells Shadow Magic and Demi-Shadow Magic are for. Phantasmal Force is a HUGE can of worms. That's because it is left almost entirely up to the DM to decide exactly what Phantasmal Force can - or CAN'T - do. And it has some contradictory elements to it, for example stating plainly that it's strictly a visual illusion, but then suggesting that it can do damage - and then utterly failing to indicate what, if any, constraints to put on the amount of damage that can be done. Shadow Magic is a 5th level illusionist spell, and Demi-Shadow Magic is 6th. Phantasmal Force is only 1st for Illusionists - so if it can do exactly what those two VERY specific spells do while being 4 or 5 levels LOWER, what the hell is the purpose of having those higher level spells?

My only question (which I floated past my DM and he wasn't sure) involves the verbal component. If your character is saying "Phantasmal Force" or whatever the spellwords are, wouldn't that be a bit of a giveaway that you weren't actually casting Fireball or whatever you're bluffing?

Just wondering if enemy magic users within earshot can freely ignore my illusion simply because they know I wasn't saying the proper incantation.
Personally, in order to properly address all the MANY issues that arise with Phantasmal Force (and the later Improved PF, Spectral Force, and Programmed Illusion, which are all the same basic spell just with increased capabilities in what kind of illusion they can portray and how effective they can be) I just re-wrote the spell. It lacked any kind of sensible rules or control - I gave it that. It's now a much longer description obviously, but it was desperately needed. I'll put it up if you're interested. I'm certainly not the only DM who found it necessary to resort to adding a great deal of rules to it, to eliminate the need to always make up RULINGS on the spot to deal with the spell.

Short of doing that, the answers to your questions can ONLY be answered by the individual DM of a campaign, because those answers simply ARE NOT to be found in the rules themselves.