The Planar Binding spell has no text excluding "obviously harmful" or "suicidal" instructions. On the other hand, all of the following spells do have such text: Command (1st level enchantment), Suggestion (2nd level enchantment, Compulsion (4th level enchantment), Geas (5th level enchantment), Planar Ally (6th level conjuration) and Mass Suggestion (6th level enchantment)

Under the meta-rule that "there are no hidden rules", does this mean that the subject of a Planar Binding spell can be given a harmful/suicidal instruction?

I think that RAW, the answer is yes. I'm more interested in RAI and RAF, game balance, and how this helps develop an internally consistent "theory of binding magic" (search this site for "Planar Binding" for numerous other questions related to such a theory).


1 Answer 1



As you note, there is nothing saying that you can’t, neither a general rule nor anything in the spells description. It should be noted however that many of the things you can affect with Planar Binding won’t permanently die just because their body is destroyed, so unless you’re in rather unusual circumstances all you’re really doing is releasing the bound creature from the binding in an unusual way (the main exception to this would be some of the weaker Fey creatures, but I don’t think I want to know why you’re capturing fairies and spending 1000GP worth of jewelry just so you can tell them to commit suicide).

This has no impact on balance. A creature that you’ve cast Planar Binding on has already lost to you one way or the other, and causing it to unnecessarily kill or harm itself isn’t doing yourself any favours considering how troublesome pulling off a successful Planar Binding is in the first place.


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