In Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition, can the visual effect produced by a magical illusion be seen in a mirror or other reflective surface?

A specific example would be Minor Illusion. This question is motivated in part by the ruling that such an illusion does not shed light and cannot illuminate an area.


1 Answer 1


There's no reason why you wouldn't be able to

Unless an illusion says that it only appears in a target's mind, then it actually takes a visible form for all to see, so there is no reason why it wouldn't show up in a mirror or any other reflective surface.

And even if it does appear just in the target's head, it is still projecting its presence into the person's head, so there is no reason for it to not also appear in the mirror as far as the target is concerned.

  • \$\begingroup\$ But for the second image (in the mirror) to appear in the target's head, shouldn't the caster use the spell twice? As far as target is concerned, "real" view and view in the mirror are two different places. \$\endgroup\$
    – mz71
    Commented Feb 14, 2020 at 11:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is a view in a mirror not a depiction of what is real? The only times that it is not tend to be if the mirror is magical, or if you're dealing with vampires. So I guess if it was an illusion of a vampire then it wouldn't appear on the mirror, but other than that it would seem that it would \$\endgroup\$
    – Smart_TJ
    Commented Feb 14, 2020 at 11:49
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ But the target thinks they will, so if the illusion is to do it's job, then certain laws of physics do apply \$\endgroup\$
    – Smart_TJ
    Commented Feb 14, 2020 at 12:38
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ What? No, I'm saying that one illusion is all you need for a complete visual effect, reflections and all \$\endgroup\$
    – Smart_TJ
    Commented Feb 14, 2020 at 12:51
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ (Alternatively, if the illusion doesn't have any physical presence and it's a purely mental phenomenom, then there's even less reason to think it wouldn't work. If someone's mind is tricked to generate perceptions consistent with the illusory object, then it stands to reason they would generate all the perceptions that such an object would produce - including reflections, blocking line of sight behind it, etc.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 14, 2020 at 14:31

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