Color Spray in 5e Dnd: How to use it and why you are wrong

There are so many spells in Dungeons and Dragons that get no love. Color Spray in 5e is one of those underestimated magic illusions that nobody uses but is pretty powerful for creative players. 

This article will take a closer look at the illusion magic Color spray 5e. If you enjoy DnD and aren’t going for the most compelling character built, this is just the guide you need! 

What is Color Spray 5e, and how does it work


  • Casting time: 1 action
  • Level: first-level illusion
  • Range: Self (15-foot cone)
  • Target: A 15-foot cone that originates from you
  • Components: Verbal, Somatic, and material. The material is a pinch of powder or sand that is red, yellow, and blue.)
  • Duration: one round
  • Classes: Sorcerer and Wizard

As you see, you need a ton of components to cast this illusion. Especially the material component is quite a hassle. For example, you need red, blue, and yellow sand. I don’t enjoy spells that use a ton of components. So here are two articles on magic that do not use verbal and material components.

Spell description

When you cast Color Spray, rays of colored light are emitted from your hand. You now need to roll a 6d10. This amount is the number of hit points of creatures this spell will affect. Creatures in the 15-foot cone are affected by their hitpoints (ascending). 

Starting with a creature that has the lowest hitpoints, creatures are blinded until the spell ends. Next, subtract the hitpoints of the first target from the amount you have rolled. When this amount is not reduced to zero, go to the following creature and do the same. The amount must be equal to or more than the number of the creature’s hitpoints remaining to have an effect. The spell ignores unconscious creatures and creatures you cannot see. 

Upcasting Color Spray 5e: you can upcast this illusion. For every spell slot over the first, you can add a 2d10 to the amount to the effect of the illusion. 

What is blinded?

Wondering what blinded is in 5e DnD? Here is what you need to know about this status condition. 

  • Blinded creatures can not see and will fail all ability checks automatically if they require sight
  • Attack rolls against a blinded target have an advantage, and the beast has a disadvantage on their attack rolls. 
5e color spray

Color Spray’s advantages and drawbacks



  • A lot of components needed
  • It isn’t a great upcast. 

Best uses for Color Spray 5e

1. Escaping and hiding from hoards

Escaping a hoard of enemies is easy if you can easily blind them with a nicely aimed color spray. You can seek a ray at them and blind the monsters coming at you. They will fail all their ability checks to find you because they are blind. 

Make sure you aim right and don’t forget a minion. If you do, that one can find you and help the others attack you. However, they will have a disadvantage on their attack rolls. 

2. Putting minions at a disadvantage

If you aren’t a big fan of getting hit or want to play a more supporting role as an illusion wizard, then helping your friends out by making enemies blind will do the trick. If the creatures are attacking, you have a disadvantage on their attack roll. This disadvantage for a turn can give you a lot of utility if you are using it well or if all the creatures have been affected by the effect of color spray 5e. 

3. Use against charm-resisting creatures

Color spray is a good alternative for charm spells. However, having an ace up your sleeve is always helpful if you happen to come across a charm-resisting creature and still want to debuff it. 

The color spray attack is helpful as a backup in the earlier levels. However, after just a few battles and leaving ups, you will notice that the number of enemies you can blind is dramatically reduced. 

DnD color spray

Advice and final thoughts and color spray summary table

While Color Spray can be a lot of fun at the lower levels for a couple of battles, it isn’t advantageous after a few hours of campaigning behind your belt. So while most players will enjoy the power of this spell, most will also notice quickly that Sleep is the better option.

Color Spray 5e is a mediocre illusion spell. There are much better alternatives for you to pick, but it is still pretty fun even if the magic is suboptimal for your account built. 

Color spray is a unique spell, that is fun to use if you are creative. So don’t just skip it because it does not do the most possible damage. 

Spell NameColor Spray
Spell Level1st level
ComponentsV, S, M (red, yellow, and blue powder or colored sand)
Casting Time1 action
RangeSelf (15-foot cone)
Duration1 round
DescriptionEmit rays of colored light from your hand. Roll 6d10 to determine the number of hit points affected. Creatures in the cone are blinded until the spell ends.
Blinded ConditionBlinded creatures cannot see and automatically fail ability checks that require sight. Attack rolls against them have advantage, and their attack rolls have disadvantage.
Advantages– Can affect multiple targets
– Can be upcast for increased effect
– Useful for escaping and hiding from enemies
– Puts enemies at a disadvantage
Disadvantages– Requires multiple components
– Upcasting is not as effective
Best Uses– Escaping and hiding from groups of enemies
– Putting minions at a disadvantage
– Using against charm-resisting creatures
Summary table

Tip: building an illusion wizard? Check out the best items for that build! 

color spray dnd

Color Spray FAQ

Color Spray vs. Sleep: what is better?

Generally speaking, Sleep is a much better choice compared to color spray in 5e DnD. Color Spray is a vital area of effect attack that is pretty strong in the beginning levels of your campaigns. However, if you do the math and look at the two compared to one another, Sleep 5e seems to be the better pick. 

Can blindsight and true sight be affected by color spray 5e?

No, there is no actual sight. Color spray 5e only affects visual sight. So non-visual senses such as vibration, being aware of magic, keen smell, and acute hearing. So you won be able to use this illusion to help you out with enemies who have these abilities.