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Q&A

Do you incur the Wish penalties for using Wish for one of the alternative uses outlined in the PHB?

+3
−1

Wish is the most powerful spell in D&D, being able to alter the very foundations of reality with one spell.

The description for use of the Wish spell in the Player's Handbook is this:

The basic use of this spell is to duplicate any other spell of 8th level or lower. You don’t need to meet any requirements in that spell, including costly components. The spell simply takes effect.

Alternatively, you can create one of the following effects of your choice:

You create one object of up to 25,000 gp in value that isn’t a magic item. The object can be no more than 300 feet in any dimension, and it appears in an unoccupied space you can see on the ground.
[etc]

However, the Handbook also gives the option for casting beyond the given examples:

You might be able to achieve something beyond the scope of the above examples. State your wish to the DM as precisely as possible. The DM has great latitude in ruling what occurs in such an instance; the greater the wish, the greater the likelihood that something goes wrong. This spell might simply fail, the effect you desire might only be partly achieved, or you might suffer some unforeseen consequence as a result of how you worded the wish. For example, wishing that a villain were dead might propel you forward in time to a period when that villain is no longer alive, effectively removing you from the game. Similarly, wishing for a legendary magic item or artifact might instantly transport you to the presence of the item’s current owner.

The stress of casting this spell to produce any effect other than duplicating another spell weakens you. After enduring that stress, each time you cast a spell until you finish a long rest, you take 1d10 necrotic damage per level of that spell. This damage can’t be reduced or prevented in any way. In addition, your Strength drops to 3, if it isn’t 3 or lower already, for 2d4 days. For each of those days that you spend resting and doing nothing more than light activity, your remaining recovery time decreases by 2 days. Finally, there is a 33 percent chance that you are unable to cast wish ever again if you suffer this stress.

I'd like to clarify the wording of "The stress of casting this spell to produce any effect other than duplicating another spell weakens you." Specifically, does this apply to the stated alternative effects listed in the Handbook (such as the creation of one object up to 25,000gp in value)?
If I use Wish to use the "...allow up to twenty creatures that you can see to regain all hit points, and you end all effects on them described in the greater restoration spell" effect outlined in the PHB, do I incur the same penalties as a use of Wish not outlined in the book (extra damage, 33% chance of losing the ability to cast Wish)?

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2 answers

+2
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Yes.

As stated in the spell description (and as you include in your answer):

The stress of casting this spell to produce any effect other than duplicating another spell weakens you.

Emphasis mine. Since the listed alternatives are not duplicating spell effects, you would suffer the stress described, as well as the accompanying risk of losing the ability to cast wish.

If you wish to avoid this risk. you may still attempt to replicate such effects using another (8th level or lower) spell, but your results may vary, such as the 3rd level protection from energy providing only one target with resistance to one amongst a limited set of damage types...for one hour.

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I’d think it does what it says on the tin. The examples above are not duplicating a spell, ergo it incurs the penalties noted.

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