The Plane of Shadows has the Enhanced Magic trait, with the effect that:

Spells with the shadow descriptor are enhanced on the Plane of Shadow. Such spells are cast as though they were prepared with the Maximize Spell feat, though they don’t require the higher spell slots.

…but I’m not seeing a lot of spells with the shadow descriptor. It looks like there are two, both from Champions of Ruin.

Is the maximization supposed to apply to more spells than this, or is it just an essentially non-functioning trait?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ There are many spells with the (Shadow) subschool. I've always assumed this rule was intended to refer to that, but now that I take a close look, I see that it does indeed say "descriptor," which is supposed to be a different thing. Are you interested in a listing of (Shadow) subschool spells (like my deleted answer), or are you working off the assumption that this rule really did mean "descriptor"? \$\endgroup\$
    – A_S00
    Commented Sep 18, 2022 at 21:36
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @A_S00 “working off the assumption” is a strong way of putting it. I checked the text (don’t even remember why), started looking for conforming spells, and quickly went “WTF?” I don’t have any assumption about what this is supposed to mean, but the RAW seems… unlikely to be the intended mechanic. \$\endgroup\$
    – fectin
    Commented Sep 19, 2022 at 12:16

1 Answer 1


I'm guessing you used one of the piracy websites (see comments), looking for the Shadow descriptor.

Try looking at the Shadow subschool instead, it returns 56 spells which I do believe qualify.

I think the problem is that the authors of the Players Guide to Faerûn (erroneously) believed the Shadow subschool to be a descriptor, which the authors of Champions of Ruin then went along with.

I would certainly house rule the effect applicable to both subschool and descriptor, but RAW, there are only two spells that would be affected by the Plane of Shadow's Enhanced Magic.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Yes, there is no such thing as a shadow descriptor. Shadow is a subschool of illusion (see here). So the plane of shadow’s enhanced magic trait should refer to the shadow subschool. Likewise, the two spells from Champions of Ruin should not have the shadow descriptor. It's a double error... \$\endgroup\$
    – Peregrin
    Commented Sep 18, 2022 at 22:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PeregrinTook One error compounding another. As an aside, there are the two Shadow Tentacle spells from Lords of Darkness that are Abjurations, but let's call those a third error. \$\endgroup\$
    – From
    Commented Sep 18, 2022 at 22:25
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    \$\begingroup\$ Linking to D&D Tools and other piracy websites here is not allowed—see meta. Please edit your post to not point to D&D Tools, and instead point to anything else that's legal, like the D&D Beyond or Roll20 databases. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 18, 2022 at 22:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @doppelgreener Sort of done, but D&D Beyond and Roll20 don't appear to have any 3.5 material? I used d20srd.org instead, which seems (?) reasonably legit. \$\endgroup\$
    – From
    Commented Sep 18, 2022 at 23:05
  • 6
    \$\begingroup\$ Really, the entire subschool vs. descriptor distinction was a mistake from the get go. The authors of Player’s Guide to Faerûn and Champions of Ruin still had a responsibility to get it right, but it is a stupid issue. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Sep 19, 2022 at 1:28

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