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Invisible in 5e – Epic Surprises around Every Corner

The official description of invisible is as follows: (Source – Roll20)

  • An invisible creature is impossible to see without the aid of magic or a special sense. For the purpose of hiding, the creature is heaviliy obscured. The creatures location can be detected by any noise it makes or tracks it leaves.
  • Attack rolls against an invisible creature have disadvantage, and the creature’s attack rolls have advantage.

Causes of Invisible:

Invisible cat - camouflage in a nutshell
A camouflaged cat is essentially invisible, in the right spot.

There are numerous causes of invisibility. All you need to do to see this is scroll down a bit.


Class Features

  • Wild Magic Sorcery
    • (69-70) Each creature within 30 feet of you becomes invisible for the next minute. The invisibility ends on a creature when it attacks or casts a spell.
    • (89-90) You become invisible for the next minute. During that time, other creatures can’t hear you. The invisibility ends if you attack or cast a spell.
  • Channel Divinity: Cloak of Shadows (Cleric 6th level) {Trickery Domain} [Player’s Handbook Pg 63]
    • As an action, you become invisible until the end of your next turn. You become visible if you attack or cast a spell.
  • Empty Body (Monk 18th level) [Player’s Handbook Pg 79]
    • Beginning at 18th level, you can use your action to spend 4 ki points to become invisible for 1 minute. During that time, you also have resistance to all damage but force damage. Additionally, you can spend 8 ki points to cast the astral projection spell, without needing material components. When you do so, you can’t take any other creatures with you.

Magic Items

Potions & Misc

  • Potion of Invisibility [Dungeon Master’s Guide Pg 188]
  • Sylvan Forest Encounter (15) [Dungeon Master’s Guide Pg 87]
    • A magical plant with 2d4 glowing berries. A creature that ingest a berry becomes invisible for 1 hour, or until it attacks or casts a spell. Once picked, a berry loses its magic after 12 hours. Berries regrow at midnight, but if all it’s berries are picked, the plant becomes nonmagical, and grows no more berries.

Epic Boons

How Invisibility Can Be Used for Storytelling:

A hidden door to a room full of treasure… an assassin stalking their target, waiting for their moment to strike. The Ancient red dragon, made invisible, for some reason? The uses of invisibility are nearly endless.

However, most players would use it to amplify their rogue’s ability to lift items from unsuspecting victims. This is a condition that players love to use, and often use it in ways that may throw you in for a loop.

How to Take Control of an Uncomfortable Invisibility Use

uncomfortable uses of invisibility

Invisibility can also be used in ways that can make your group feel uncomfortable. Let me explain.

Perhaps, one of them could try drinking a potion of invisibility and sneaks into a changing room full of courtly women. As you can imagine, this can be a point of contention, especially for groups that have mixed genders. Well, I have a way for you to derail this situation quickly as the GM to keep it in line with the maturity level everyone is comfortable with.

Little did they know, there is a Lantern of Revealing posted at the entrance to the changing room that thwarts their plans. Now they get the fun task of trying to roleplay their way out of the situation, leaving with the scorn of the women, and potentially in shackles. This is a lot better than being forced to describe the alternative to the group. I also recommend talking with them after the fact if it is a step too far for your group’s comfort.

Just expect the players to want to steal said lantern for themselves later on.

How to Detect an Invisible Creature

There are a few different ways to detect an invisible creature. Most of them involve a magic item, though there are some class features that aren’t listed that also reveal the unseen.


Magic Items


  • Invisibility doesn’t prevent sounds, nor does it eliminate footsteps in most cases. A perception roll on invisible targets who can’t fly can be used to approximate their position.
  • Puddles in a rainy evironment can more easily reveal an invisible person’s location.

How Bad is the Invisible Condition?

If the players are the ones using invisibility, then it can be quite useful in a wide variety of situations.

However, going up against a creature that has the ability to go invisible can be a challenge, especially if they don’t have any large area of effect spells that they can cast. In the right conditions, a crafty creature can take on a high-level party through the clever use of invisibility, flying, and teleportation.

It is for this reason that invisibility is actually one of the more dangerous conditions, though only if used in a way that makes it dangerous.

Devon Kubacki

Devon Kubacki

Hi there, I'm Devon, nice to meet you! I am the founder of Notes of Yore, and I'm an avid fan of tabletop games, particularly Dungeons and Dragons. I've been playing for just under two years now, and can say that I am hooked...or rather grappled by it. I hope you find my work here on NoYo helpful, and thank you for reading!View Author posts

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