Tasha’s Hideous Laughter: Why So Serious?

Casting Time

1 action


1 action




30 feet


Bard, Wizard




1 minute





Spell Description:

A creature of your choice that you can see within range perceives everything as hilariously funny and falls into fits of laughter if this spell affects it. The target must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or fall prone, becoming incapacitated and unable to stand up for the duration.

A creature with an Intelligence score of 4 or less isn’t affected. At the end of each of its turns, and each time it takes damage, the target can make another Wisdom saving throw. The target has advantage on the saving throw if it’s triggered by damage. On a success, the spell ends.

1st level, Enchantment, Control, Debuff

Level: Bard (1), Wizard (1), The Great Old One (1), Arcane Trickster (3), Eldritch Knight (8) 

Materials Required: Tiny tarts and feather that’s waved in the air

Number of Targets: 1

Die Type: None

Number of Dice: None

Damage Type: None

Save: Wisdom

Damage On Successful Save: None

Statuses Inflicted: Laughter, Prone

Status Duration: Until they succeed on a Wisdom save to end the effect or 1 minute

Affected By Cover: No

Advantage: On a Wisdom save triggered by damage

Disadvantage: None

What Is Tasha’s Hideous Laughter?

Tasha’s Hideous Laughter is an Enchantment spell. The spell can target any creature, but a creature with 4 or fewer points in Intelligence won’t be affected by it. The target will need to succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or fall prone and become incapacitated, laughing hysterically.

Who Can Cast Tasha’s Hideous Laughter?

Bards and Wizards are the only ones who have a natural ability to cast Tasha’s Hideous Laughter. They can start casting the spell at the 1st level. Warlocks whose Patron is The Great Old one can also cast Tasha’s Hideous Laughter off their expanded spell list beginning at the 1st level.

Arcane Tricksters can add this spell to their repertoire starting at 3rd level when they first gain their Roguish Archetype. Eldritch Knights, however, will need to wait until the 8th level when they can take spells from the Enchantment school of magic.

When and Where Should I Cast Tasha’s Hideous Laughter?

Tasha’s Hideous Laughter is a great control spell, especially against targets with low Wisdom scores. It can easily take a low Wisdom enemy out of a fight without ever touching them.

Creatures you don’t want to cast Tasha’s Hideous Laughter on are going to be those who can’t speak a language or are otherwise very obviously low on the intellect side of things as they may just outright be immune to it virtue of being completely stupid.

Why Should I Take Tasha’s Hideous Laughter?

Tasha’s Hideous Laughter is going to be a good pick up for both Bards and Wizards as there’s no shortage of low Wisdom enemies to fight in the world.

Even among higher Challenge Rating creatures, there’s a variety of boss-level monsters with less Wisdom than one might first think, and even against a higher Wisdom creature, a series of bad rolls 

Common Questions About Tasha’s Hideous Laughter

Are Tasha’s Hideous Laughter and Hideous Laughter the Same?

Yes. They are the same spell but have different sourcebooks.

What Is the DC for Tasha’s Hideous Laughter?

The DC is equal to the caster’s spellcasting DC (8 + Spell Casting Modifier + Proficiency).

What Are Tiny Tarts?

Tiny tarts refer to palm-sized pastry shells.

Is Tasha’s Hideous Laughter a Charm?

No. Tasha’s Hideous Laughter does not mention charming the target, so it isn’t a charm.

Alternatives to Tasha’s Hideous Laughter

How to Use Tasha’s Hideous Laughter

For Players

Tasha’s Hideous Laughter is a great control spell for players to use. Even without the added flavor of your enemy doubled over in laughter, the ability to knock someone prone with a Wisdom save is a powerful tool.

The best enemies to use Tasha’s Hideous Laughter on are ones who have solid predispositions towards martial traits.

Orcs, goblins, hobgoblins, and bugbears are all good candidates for Tasha’s Hideous Laughter. Other good candidates include but are not limited to kobolds and beasts.

Players should avoid using Tasha’s Hideous Laughter on characters of classes that require high Wisdom scores, as they’re far more likely to make the saving throw and waste your spell slot.

Clerics, Monks, and Druids will have a much easier time breaking free from the holds of Tasha’s Hideous Laughter than most Barbarians. 

For Dungeon Masters

For Dungeon Masters, including some low-Wisdom bosses means that your players will get use out of Tasha’s Hideous Laughter and leave the battle feeling satisfied with their spell choices.

Getting around a player who is abusing Tasha’s Hideous laughter can be achieved by sending in a boss who would appear to be low-Wisdom, an Orcish Fighter perhaps, and then giving them a deceptively high Wisdom score or simply fudging a few rolls to avoid the player trivializing every single fight by using Tasha’s Hideous Laughter.