Can a target with the deafened condition be affected by the Tasha's Hideous Laughter spell?

The spell states "a creature of your choice", so I was just wondering if they needed to be able to hear or not.

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    – V2Blast
    Sep 2, 2019 at 5:17

1 Answer 1


The spell would work as normal

The Tasha's hideous laughter spell states:

A creature of your choice that you can see within range perceives everything as hilariously funny and falls into fits of laughter if this spell affects it. The target must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or fall prone, becoming incapacitated and unable to stand up for the duration. A creature with an Intelligence score of 4 or less isn't affected.

At the end of each of its turns, and each time it takes damage, the target can make another Wisdom saving throw. The target has advantage on the saving throw if it's triggered by damage. On a success, the spell ends.

Creatures you cannot see, creatures that are not within range, and creatures with 4 or less Intelligence are the only ones called out as being unaffected by the spell.

Compare this to a spell like suggestion, which states:

You suggest a course of activity (limited to a sentence or two) and magically influence a creature you can see within range that can hear and understand you.

Or a spell like dissonant whispers, which states:

[...] A deafened creature automatically succeeds on the save.

There is no such restriction with the Tasha's hideous laughter spell. Thus, it affects deaf/deafened creatures as it would any other creature.

  • \$\begingroup\$ A way to interpret this is to see the laughter as being mental, not auditory. It doesn't matter if they're deaf because they hear it in their mind. \$\endgroup\$
    – Grollo
    Sep 2, 2019 at 7:35
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ For me, it was always the victim which was giggling, not the caster. Not sure why victim would need to hear it? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 2, 2019 at 7:46
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Grollo I don't think it even needs that kind of rationale. The spell doesn't imply that the victim hears laughter and is compelled to join in; it implies that their perception/mood changes such that they start laughing. The victim's laughter is almost certainly auditory, but whether the victim can hear has no effect on whether the spell affects their mind and thus makes the victim laugh. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 2, 2019 at 9:27
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    \$\begingroup\$ Compare it to seeing a person slip on a banana peel. Normally you wouldn't even take much notice of it, but if you're affected by the spell, it seems so hilarious that you just cannot stop laughing. Even in real life a funny mime can get you laughing without any sounds involved (think Mr. Bean). A blind creature, on the other hand, would ignore visual clues and perceive any sound as so funny they wouldn't be able to stop. A blind and deaf creature could feel a tickling that makes them laugh. There are no restrictions. \$\endgroup\$
    – Elmy
    Sep 3, 2019 at 12:53

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