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During the night my wizard casts the alarm spell around where he sleeps (yes, even inside his tiny hut) to make sure nobody tries to touch his stuff. During the day however he has to rely on his own senses, which is just too mundane for his liking, so he has been working on a spell for that.

My current suggestion is:

Alert

xth-level Divination

Casting time: 1 minute

Range: Touch, special

Components: V, S, M (something clever I will think of later)

Duration: 8 hours


You create a divination sensor which can warn against attempted theft. Choose a single portable object within range that is no heavier than your ability to carry it. Until the spell ends you are alerted whenever a tiny or larger creature touches the object. The alert takes the form of a vision revealing the image of the creature in a clear manner which would allow you to identify the individual creature should you be, or become, familiar with them.

When you cast this spell you can designate creatures that won't trigger the alert.

The mental alert will only trigger if the object is within 60ft of you when the object is touched.


This spell is castable by a Wizard

I am heavily considering making this a ritual, because that fits spells like this, but that might be asking too much because then it effectively becomes free. So assuming I don't try to make it a ritual - what level should this spell sit at? I know that making it a ritual doesn't really effect the level, but it does make it a pretty moot point once you are high enough level to cast it at all, which I am.

My own personal thought is that power wise it is probably 1st level, but since Alarm already sits as a 1st level spell and doesn't cover objects I can only assume that is deliberate, so would be more likely to put this as a 2nd level spell.

Notes:

If there are any abuses with a spell like this please let me know, I put the 60ft range on it because it is only intended to protect things my character is carrying, I am happy to change that to a shorter distance if it makes sense, but 60ft felt right.

The basic idea of the spell, that I hope I conveyed with the wording, is that whenever someone touches my stuff I know who did it. The expectation is that it is one of my own party!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I think removing the "which would allow you to identify the individual creature should you be, or become, familiar with them" would clean up the text without losing anything. Also, if they use mage hand or gloves to grab your stuff, they are not technically "touching" it. I suspect you left that loophole on purpose. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 31, 2022 at 15:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GroodytheHobgoblin yes I did leave that loophole on purpose actually, good spot :) \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Jan 31, 2022 at 22:02

1 Answer 1

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If this is a ritual, it should be 2nd level

A close comparison to this (which has additional other uses, but not the "silent" alarm mode) is the second level spell Magic Mouth.

This is likewise a ritual, has a material component cost of 10gp, but in exchange, does not expire, works against anyone (not just your party), and is reusable. Just let it scream whatever you like if someone touches your items.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I actually can't believe I overlooked magic mouth when researching this spell \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Jan 31, 2022 at 16:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ Good point! This is massively less versatile than magic mouth, but quite a bit stronger because only you know about it. I honestly think Magic Mouth should be 3-6th level - why aren't there earbuds that tell you about any hidden creature nearby, sold for 40 gold? But given that it's 2nd level, 2nd level is the right choice for alert. \$\endgroup\$
    – Phoenices
    Jan 31, 2022 at 18:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Phoenices you are the first person I have ever seen suggest magic mouth should be higher level, but I think your comment about hidden creatures misses the line in the spell that the trigger must be based on visual or audible conditions - a hidden creature is neither. If it did what you suggested then maybe you would be correct though. \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Feb 1, 2022 at 14:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SeriousBri I had a discussion about this just yesterday in chat! If you're wondering if it has perfect knowledge, the answer is yes. Pretty sure it can even see through walls! \$\endgroup\$
    – Phoenices
    Feb 1, 2022 at 17:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Phoenices that is one of those RAW type rules that I have no intention of ever respecting, it's a fairly clear oversight in my eyes, but good point nevertheless! \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Feb 1, 2022 at 22:24

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