This spell could be found in different versions as it evolved over the years. All versions produced one to four "moon motes" that resembled dancing lights but packed the punch of ball lightning. The caster had to send at least one of these motes toward a target at each opportunity during combat or else all remaining motes vanished and the spell was ended. Each mote could have a different target and it only took the briefest moment for the caster to fire the moonbow, so he or she could do other things, including cast other spells, as long as at least one mote was launched at a target each action. The more motes that were summoned, the less electrical damage each mote was able to deliver.
The principle drawback of the earlier versions of this spell was the requirement that it be cast at night when the caster could see the moon in the sky, so daylight, cloud cover, or being indoors prevented this spell from working. The latest version had no such restriction, but was not quite as versatile in target selection. The latest version was essentially an instant attack with a range of 100 ft (30 m) plus 10 ft (3 m) per level of the caster, whereas the earlier versions were "fire and forget"—each mote would streak toward its target faster than a dragon could fly (but slower than a falcon), and follow it around corners and past obstacles, ignoring invisibility, mirror image, blur, etc., until it reached its target and struck as if the caster were in melee with a significant magical bonus.
The earliest version of Presper's moonbow allowed the caster to choose the number of motes and they would hover in front of the caster until launched but the later versions were unpredictable in number and orbited the caster. The motes created by the earlier versions of this spell could be physically attacked though they were very difficult to hit. If struck successfully, they discharged their damage to all within 10 ft (3 m), including the caster for unlaunched motes. The same thing occurred if a mote was struck by either natural or magical lightning.
In addition to verbal and somatic components, the different versions had various material components. The latest version required only a small moonstone. The earlier versions required a piece of a cobweb, a scrap of fur, and an amber rod. The earliest version allowed a glass or crystal rod instead of amber.
Presper's moonbow was originally published in the "Tome of the Covenant" to commemorate the founding of the Covenant in the Year of the Covenant, 673 DR. The second version was later published in "Volo's Guide to All Things Magical" and became generally known to the magical community.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 108–109. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 57. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
- ↑ Mark Middleton et al (March 1998). Wizard's Spell Compendium Volume Three. (TSR, Inc), p. 683. ISBN 978-0786907915.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Ed Greenwood (December 1984). “Pages from the Mages III”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #92 (TSR, Inc.), p. 40.
- ↑ Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 32. ISBN 0-9356-9600-8.
- ↑ Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 64. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 58. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
- ↑ Ed Greenwood, Tim Beach (1995). Pages from the Mages. (TSR, Inc), p. 113. ISBN 0-7869-0183-7.
- ↑ Ed Greenwood (December 1984). “Pages from the Mages III”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #92 (TSR, Inc.), p. 38.
- ↑ Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
- ↑ Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 44. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.