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I'm still pretty new to D&D. I'm setting up to play as a Trickster/Cleric follower of Leira (who is still alive in this campaign). I was thinking how my character could come up with clever deceptions.

Does my cleric have any control on what the duplicate from Invoke Duplicity looks like? I know it's the same body, but can the clothes be changed? Would my duplicate need to take a moment to change clothes or apply makeup — or is that even possible?

An example of use might be: While in town my cleric is disguised, but the duplicate is not disguised (clothes, etc.) so as to throw off anyone that might be looking for my cleric.

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As written, no.

The Trickery Domain cleric's Invoke Duplicity Channel Divinity option (PHB p. 63) says:

... you can use your Channel Divinity to create an illusory duplicate of yourself.

As an action, you create a perfect illusion of yourself that lasts for 1 minute, or until you lose your concentration (as if you were concentrating on a spell).

Let's apply this to your questions:

Does my cleric have any control on what the duplicate from Invoke Duplicity looks like?

It is a "duplicate" and a "perfect illusion of yourself" which means it looks (and sounds, tastes, smells etc.) exactly like you.

I know it's the same body, but can the clothes be changed?

If you were at my table this would extend to the clothes you are wearing and the things you are carrying, however, you may be able to convince your DM that you can make it appear in a different outfit etc.

Would my duplicate need to take a moment to change clothes or apply makeup — or is that even possible?

This is not possible. It is an illusion (specifically a phantasm) and has no real substance - think of it like a perfect hologram that you can smell, taste, hear and touch as well as see. It is objectively there; that is everyone can point to it and agrees what it looks like but it isn't real.

Illusions can interact with the real world in the ways and to the extent that the particular ways that the specific effect that creates them says they can. As illusions go, this one is pretty substantial, the rules describe it as:

  • Perfect - for mine, this means that it is impossible to determine which of the two of you is real. This means that it will move and react realistically: if someone slices it with a sword it will bleed, if a wolf tries to smell it, it smells just like you and if an enemy wants to move through its space, they can't.
  • lasts for 1 minute - it can't be "disbelieved" or seen through except by an effect that allows such (e.g. truesight)

As to what it can do: it can move as a bonus action, you can cast spells as though they originated from it (save that you must use your own senses) and if it and you are within 5 feet of a creature they have disadvantage on attack rolls against you (I would rule that they would also have to pick which one of you they want to attack).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ So given my example from before, it sounds like I'd have to cast Invoke Duplicity and change my outfit immediately afterward or otherwise disguise myself... right? \$\endgroup\$ – aikeru Oct 23 '15 at 14:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ So I know I'm a bit late for this to be relevant to the asker's game, but it could help others. You could feasibly disguise yourself after casting it. Or before casting it, using illusion magic. You could use a Hat of Disguise to make yourself look like a different race, but the duplicity illusion would be a duplicate of your real self, not the illusion others see you as. \$\endgroup\$ – J Nason Oct 6 '17 at 21:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ Downvoted because it does not consider using disguise self prior to invoke duplicity. Which makes this entirely possible. \$\endgroup\$ – Spoo Jan 30 at 2:24
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I would say yes, if you first cast Disguise Self and then use Invoke Duplicity.
Invoke Duplicity specifies that it create's a perfect illusion of yourself. If you look like someone else when you cast it, a 'perfect' illusion of yourself would include your new look.

That's a huge reason why Trickery Cleric gets access to it at level 1.

Also, as a comment suggested: You could also be a Changeling (from Eberron) and change prior to using Invoke Duplicity. It would all work to successfully change the appearance of your clone.

Bear in mind to be a perfect illusion it would have to fool both visual and tactile. Thus, invoke duplicity would also copy any visual and tactile inconsistencies that could exists when casting Disguise self. I.E. you Disguise Self yourself in plate when your wearing leather. Changeling however, is a purely tactile change no illusion involved. So anyone touching a duplicate of a Changeling (not undergoing any illusion magic) could find nothing suspiciously wrong.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, Changeling is an Eberron race that can 'with limitations' change between humanoid appearances, but not its clothes. Unlike illusions these are physical changes which would also pass a tactile test if invoke duplicity were to be a 'perfect clone'. \$\endgroup\$ – Spoo Mar 31 at 11:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ OK, a page ref would be good. Thanks for the further explanation. \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Mar 31 at 15:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, I don't/haven't used pages for quite some time. I read new rules/features from dndbeyond.com source. \$\endgroup\$ – Spoo May 26 at 4:27

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