The Succubus' charm says that:

One humanoid the fiend can see within 30 feet of it must succeed on a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw or be magically charmed for 1 day. The charmed target obeys the fiend's verbal or telepathic commands. If the target suffers any harm or receives a suicidal command, it can repeat the saving throw, ending the effect on a success. If the target successfully saves against the effect, or if the effect on it ends, the target is immune to this fiend's Charm for the next 24 hours.

The fiend can have only one target charmed at a time. If it charms another, the effect on the previous target ends.

So we know that the effect ends if the succubus charms another creature, and that the creature can re-attempt to make its saving throw if it takes damage or is given a suicidal command.

What happens if the succubus charms a creature, and then dies shortly after? Does the effect end, or does it continue until the creature takes damage or after 24 hours?

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ What exactly is the problem you're trying to solve? It seems to me like a dead succubus isn't giving commands so it doesn't really matter if it is charmed or not? \$\endgroup\$
    – Theik
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:45
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ @Theik It matters because the effect ending would cause a previously charmed creature to cease following an already issued command. \$\endgroup\$
    – Cubic
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:47

3 Answers 3



There are no hidden rules.1 There is also no general rule that effects end if their source disappears, dies, or is destroyed or anything of the sort.2 The effect specifies the conditions under which it ends, and in the absence of other rules that'd add more conditions under which it would end, those are the only ones that cause it to end. The effect itself doesn't say it ends when the succubus dies, so it doesn't.

  1. Can't find the reference for this, but this is a general principle in 5e
  2. It's hard to prove a negative, but this is the case
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Per your [1], could this be one such reference? twitter.com/JeremyECrawford/status/857269923134939136 \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ I agree with this answer, and we all agreed that was the case when it came up in game. "There are no hidden rules" is a good rule of thumb to follow \$\endgroup\$
    – mullac
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:54
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ This answer would be improved by detailing the practical effects of the ongoing Charm \$\endgroup\$
    – Dale M
    Sep 13, 2019 at 12:36
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ You could support #1 using this Q/A: "What is the source of the “spells do only what they say they do” rules interpretation principle?" And to support #2 you could quote the PHB Appendix A: "A condition lasts either until it is countered (the prone condition is countered by standing up, for example) or for a duration specified by the effect that imposed the condition." \$\endgroup\$ Sep 13, 2019 at 13:22

Based on the attacks and the charmed condition's description:

  • A charmed creature can’t attack the charmer or target the charmer with harmful abilities or magical effects.
  • The charmer has advantage on any ability check to interact socially with the creature.

All the effects become meaningless after the fiends' death. So for most practical cases, the effects end.

If say the Succubus is resurrected soon after... I'm not 100% sure, but as a general rule, spells not requiring concentration don't end with the caster's deaths unless stated otherwise.

In conclusion, it does not end, nor does the charmed condition, but it has no mechanical meaning after the fiends' definitive death (to my knowledge).

The victim would have to carry out the commands given by the Succubus before death until the effect of the charm is broken otherwise.

  • 8
    \$\begingroup\$ This is true for the charmed condition, however the Succubus-inflicted charm has additional rules which do not become meaningless if the succubus dies (such as targets being forced to follow the succubuses commands) \$\endgroup\$
    – Cubic
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:49
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Cubic Yes, because her last "order" could outlive her through the charmed target. That's a good point... \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:50
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Cubic Good point. I imagine the victim would have to carry that command out even after the fiends' death until the effect is broken some other way. \$\endgroup\$
    – Rehalus
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:52
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ Just a tip: Because of the "wiki"-ish nature of this site, we don't signal edits like how forums do. Essentially, we just pretend that the latest and greatest version of our answer was how it's always been... \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Sep 13, 2019 at 11:58
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Rehalus It's more that there's no need to signal edits because the Stack Exchange software will automatically do it for you by adding the "edited 12 hours ago | NathanS" block underneath. This links to a history of all the changes have been made. Since the purpose of answers is to provide information for the future, not just in direct response to the OP, it's better to just have a polished version of the answer as a cohesive whole, rather than a series of "EDITED: <addition or correction>". The few people who are interested in the history of how the answer came to be can see it anyway. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben
    Sep 14, 2019 at 0:34

RAW, no

As the other answers have already pointed out, if you follow the read-as-written interpretation, you do not break free if the Succubus dies. However, there are some reasons why a DM might decide that the charm no longer works:

  • A Succubus can only charm one person at a time. This seems to imply some sort of 'concentration' on their part. It seems slightly strange that a Succubus giving a seductive wink at your party's Barbarian will somehow free you from her control while you are miles away working on following one of her orders, but the same effect would remain in effect if the Barbarian succeeds on his saving throw and then beats her to death.

    To me personally, it seems like the limit of one person Charmed at a time exists mostly as a balancing tool to prevent a single Succubus from causing a total party kill by seducing more than half the party, but it doesn't seem unreasonable to suggest that a Succubus requires some sort of mental link with the victim.

  • If you want to be extremely pedantic, the ability states that:

    The charmed target obeys the fiend's verbal or telepathic commands.

    The moment that the Succubus dies, it is no longer a fiend. It is a corpse, a corpse is not a creature but an object, fiend is a creature type and therefore an object can't be a fiend, so you are no longer under any obligation to follow the previous command. This seems like an overly "rule-lawyery" way to end the effect however.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Your answer presumes the fiend becomes a corpse and doesn't instantly reform on a respective Lower Plane like fiends that are always demons, always devils, or always yugoloths. The pedantic option could appeal to the "no hidden rules" arguement, but you also presume conditions and effect of the Succubus charm that don't appear in the rules. I think your answer could be improved if you're not trying to have it both ways, given that your conclusion agrees with the top-rated accepted answer. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 21, 2023 at 16:08

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .