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Does a level 20 druid need components for spells when in another form caused by non-wildshape effects that change their form but still allow them access to their class features, like the spell Shapechange?

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Yes, they need the components

The description of the Archdruid feature states (emphasis mine):

Additionally, you can ignore the verbal and somatic components of your druid spells, as well as any material components that lack a cost and aren't consumed by a spell. You gain this benefit in both your normal shape and your beast shape from Wild Shape.

The feature only addresses two forms, your normal form and your Wild Shape form, as benefiting from the feature.

Any other method of changing your shape is NOT covered by the feature and so components still need to be provided.

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    \$\begingroup\$ So they don't need components in normal form, then shapechange and get weaker? \$\endgroup\$ – SeriousBri Aug 20 at 9:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ See my answer, Shapechange the spell specifically overrides this via "You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them, provided that your new form is physically capable of doing so." \$\endgroup\$ – IT Alex Aug 20 at 17:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SeriousBri You shapechange into something that's not an archdruid, so yeah. The Archdruid feature allows for the skipping of components under a specific condition: you have to be in either your normal shape or Wild Shape. When you Shapechange, you're in a separate shape from those two shape options, therefore the aforementioned condition of Archdruid feature is not met. \$\endgroup\$ – TylerH Aug 21 at 7:16
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No, the benefits of Archdruid still apply.

The description of the Archdruid feature says:

Additionally, you can ignore the verbal and somatic components of your druid spells, as well as any material components that lack a cost and aren't consumed by a spell. You gain this benefit in both your normal shape and your beast shape from Wild Shape.

The description of the shapechange spell says:

You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them, provided that your new form is physically capable of doing so.

The Archdruid effect is described in a singular clause. The standing assumption here, as with most class features, is that of course this applies to your normal shape. The RAW would stop here, but instead, goes on to extend that effect to wild shape with an additional clause stating that the effect applies to both your Wild Shape and your normal shape.

The additional clause is not a restriction; it is a conditional extension to the assumed default. If it were a restriction, it would instead use language such as "only".

Hence, the spell allows you to retain the benefits of that feature, since the feature does not mention any restrictions to that effect that might override the specific spell rule.

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The Archdruid feature has no effect while under the effect of shapechange.

Archdruid says:

You gain this benefit in both your normal shape and your beast shape from Wild Shape.

Your form while under Shapechange is not your normal shape, nor your wild shape, so you would not benefit from the archdruid feature.

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No, you don't need the components specifically for Shapechange.

Shapechange specifically states:

You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them, provided that your new form is physically capable of doing so.

This is more specific than the class feature as it details this one spell and specific trumps general, which in this case is "You gain this benefit in both your normal shape and your beast shape from Wild Shape."

The class feature deals with all effects that would change your shape. This includes multiple ways of changing form: Wild Shape, shapechange, polymorph, true polymorph. Since shapechange deals with just how shapechange works, it is more specific than the general feature.

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Looking at the effects of Shapechange, PHB 275: "You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them..."

I would say that yes, this class feature would work under the lvl 9 Shapechange spell, specifically because it states in the spell details that class features work.

However, under the effects of a Polymorph spell, this class feature would not work as there are no provision for class features while under the Polymorph spell.

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