Within D&D 5e rules system, Rakshasa has "Limited Magic Immunity" that makes it immune to level 6 spells and lower unless it wishes to be affected. Tenser's Transformation buffs the caster with:

  • Weapon proficiencies
  • Advantage on attack rolls
  • 2d12 Force damage on hit

Now, all of these are caster-facing effects far as the spell is concerned. As such, they don't at least directly fall under Magic Immunity. However, what I'm interested in are the effects when applied to the Rakshasa. Obviously Rakshasa is not immune to proficiency gained in e.g. Longbow. However, what about the advantage and the 2d12 Force on hit? Would those apply in spite of the immunity?

I would lean towards "Yes" on both (because they are both just bonuses given to the caster), but I'd like to hear arguments for why this might or might not be the case. I know that ultimately this is probably "DM call"-territory, but I think it's worth trying to glean what we can of RAW.


1 Answer 1


It's up to the DM.

The target of Tenser's transformation is the caster; in some sense, the caster is the only one affected by the spell. But we can also make the case that the spell is affecting a target hit with a weapon attack. It is unclear which of these is correct.

Jeremy Crawford gave his unofficial ruling on twitter, ruling that the Rakshasa would not take enhanced damage from spells like shillelagh and magic weapon:

Shillelagh and magic weapon are spells. Limited Magic Immunity prevents a rakshasa from being affected by spells of 6th level or lower, unless it wishes to be.

If you choose to rule similarly, we should observe that not all of the effects of Tenser's transformation are affecting the Rakshasa:

  • You gain 50 temporary hit points. If any of these remain when the spell ends, they are lost.

Obviously the caster having temporary hit points does not affect the Rakshasa.

  • You have advantage on attack rolls that you make with simple and martial weapons.

This one is tricky, but I have ruled that we still have advantage on attacks against the Rakshasa. We have advantage because of something affecting us, not because of something affecting the Rakshasa.

  • When you hit a target with a weapon attack, that target takes an extra 2d12 force damage.

This one seems to directly affect the Rakshasa, though it seems just as reasonable to rule, as NautArch did here, that the effect is on something else, and it isn't a direct effect on the Rakshasa.

  • You have proficiency with all armor, shields, simple weapons, and martial weapons.

No affect on the Rakshasa, so this one remains unchanged.

  • You have proficiency in Strength and Constitution saving throws.

No effect on the Rakshasa, so this remains unchanged.

  • You can attack twice, instead of once, when you take the Attack action on your turn. You ignore this benefit if you already have a feature, like Extra Attack, that gives you extra attacks.

We get an extra attack because of an effect on us, not the Rakshasa, so we should still get the extra attack, even against the Rakshasa.

Whatever you rule, do so consistently. As Dungeon Masters, we should seek to set consistent expectations in our rulings as much as we can, so that our players can make decisions based on good information.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ It may be worth expanding on your argument regarding the force damage how you would view the Rakshasa's response to being hit by a weapon enhanced by by a spell like Elemental Weapon. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 29, 2021 at 15:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hmm, now that you mention it... Elemental Weapon immediately draws the parallel to actual magic weapons. If a +1 weapon works just fine, it seems logical to assume that a weapon or an attack temporarily made magical or given magical properties via spells like Elemental Weapon/Magic Weapon/Tenser's/Holy Weapon/etc. would function the same. Since the effect is affecting the weapon, not the target: the weapon is affecting the target via the magic but if magic from magic weapons is kosher, it seems consistent that magic weapon, regardless of the source, would work. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 30, 2021 at 4:48

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