In Curse of Strahd, the NPC

Rictavio (p. 238)

has the spell Dispel Evil and Good. It has the following function, similar to the spell Banishment:

Dismissal. As your action, make a melee spell attack against [...] an undead you can reach. On a hit, you attempt to drive the creature back to its home plane. The creature must succeed on a Charisma saving throw or be sent back to its home plane (if it isn’t there already). If they aren’t on their home plane, undead are sent to the Shadowfell, [...]

Note that as written, this implies that there exist undead that aren't native to the Shadowfell, but that they go there (rather than their home plane) if they are not on their home plane when they are Dismissed. (Otherwise, it would say, "If they aren't already there, undead are sent to the Shadowfell".)

However, note also that Barovia is part of the Domains of Dread, which are a demiplane within the Shadowfell.

As the NPC's most powerful spell, it seems like this ought to be of some use to them (and other aspects of the spell do indeed make it useful). But the presence of Barovia within the Shadowfell may limit its effectiveness.


It is clear that for an undead native to Barovia, nothing would happen; the Dismissal would fail.

  1. For an undead not native to Barovia, would 'sending it to the Shadowfell' also result in failure? Or could it be forced from the Demiplane of Dread and deposited in the greater Shadowfell?

  2. What undead within the adventure are not native to Barovia?

Zombies created by Strahd from Barovians seem likely to be natives of the demiplane itself.

Strahd himself was born on the Prime - but I would argue that his pact with the Dark Powers has made him a native of the Barovia. He is the Ancient, he is the Land.

There is a group of vampire spawn who are explicitly said to be former adventures Strahd lured to his realm and then made undead once they arrived. In this case, would Dismissal treat them as neither native to Barovia nor the Shadowfell? Is the home plane where the creature / soul is from, or where it became undead?



1 Answer 1


You cannot leave Barovia

Curse of Strahd describes Alterations to Magic in Barovia as follows (CoS, p. 24):

No spell—not even wish—allows one to escape from Strahd's domain. Astral projection, teleport, plane shift, and similar spells cast for the purpose of leaving Barovia simply fail, as do effects that banish a creature to another plane of existence. These restrictions apply to magic items and artifacts that have properties that transport or banish creatures to other planes. [...]

Even undead that are not-native to Barovia can never leave, willingly or unwillingly. Dispel Evil and Good would simply fail.

  • \$\begingroup\$ So the lower-case 'banish' referred to in Alterations to Magic is a game term which includes effects like that of the upper-case 'Banishment' but also the 'dismissal' caused by the spell Dispel Evil and Good? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kirt
    Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 16:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kirt It's not a defined game term, it's just a word. The real key words in that sentence are "other planes". \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 24, 2021 at 4:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ "Even undead that are not-native to Barovia can never leave, willingly or unwillingly." Unless the Dark Powers decide to let them go, of course. looks at Lord Soth \$\endgroup\$
    – nick012000
    Commented Oct 24, 2021 at 10:48

You must log in to answer this question.

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