Critical Role’s Matthew Mercer Expands on New Dunamancy Magic for Upcoming Wildemount Campaign Guide

Critical Role’s Matthew Mercer Expands on New Dunamancy Magic for Upcoming Wildemount Campaign Guide
Credit: D&D Beyond via YouTube

Wizards of the Coast announced that they’ll be releasing a new campaign setting titled the Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount. This new setting is based entirely on the continent of Wildemount, the primary setting for the second campaign of Critical Role, the juggernaut of Dungeons and Dragons that has helped revitalize tabletop gaming into what some consider a new Golden Age.

One of the many new features being added with the addition of this campaign setting is a type of magic that Mercer designed, titled Dunamancy. We wrote about this previously in terms of what we thought it may contain, but Mercer has decided to come out and explain his thoughts and influences in the crafting of this new family of magic.

Dunamancy is heavily based in some of the interests that Mercer has always had, namely astrophysics, metaphysics, and the like. Because of this, Dunamancy is strongly focused on manipulation and the changing of reality. This often takes form in the alteration of gravity or the changing of time, not dissimilar to spells like Slow or Haste.

In terms of the canonical story of the creation of this magic, Mercer explains the strange extraphysical nature of Dunamis, which he essentially describes as a resource generated through the possibility and probability of choices. “Choosing their destiny in the next timeline that comes to fruition, the vibrating potential of the universe towards that choice itself is an energy,” Mercer describes.

Mercer outlines a few spells, such as Fortune’s Favor, a spell that has been utilized heavily by the adventurers. Thematically, this spell condenses the essence of Dunamis and pulls into alternate possibilities to give the user another chance. Mechanically, this manifests similarly to a point from the Lucky feat, allowing the user to reroll a D20 when the need arises.

Two other spells that Mercer shared were Gravity Fissure and Reality Break. The former manipulates gravity in a line, pulling in targets that fail their saving throw and dealing heavy damage, while the second is a bit more Lovecraftian and esoteric. Essentially, the spell works similar to a Confusion spell but allows the user to choose what sort of breaks in reality their victim experiences – such as alternate reality entities of that creature tearing through reality to attempt to slay them.

While there are thematic reasons for Dunamancy to exist, serving as a unique trademark magic of the Krynn Empire, there’s nothing to tell a dungeon master how they need to implement it. Now that Dunamancy has been outlined in the Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount, the magic can be used in any setting that an adventuring party would like to utilize!