The idea of a teleport spell that doesn't cleanly and efficiently move you from point A to point B, but instead swaps chunks of the ground you are standing on got me thinking what if spells in general were more clunky?
How about a magic missile that requires you to carry around a full-size golden arrow and then throw it at your target to activate the spell. Afterwards you have to go retrieve the thing.
This is similar to requiring material components or making spells more ritual-like. But I'm also interested in making them weirder, and not so clean and science-like.
Maybe putting creatures to sleep means your party will be awake all night because the sleep of your own party was used in an exchange.
To charm someone you need to get them to eat some food you prepared (that sounds familiar did I blog about that before?).
To read languages means you gain the ability to use that language like a native but can only speak that language for the duration.
To shrink yourself creates a pile of fatty, excess meat that awaits your transformation back to normal size.
To fly actually summons two invisible angels that pull you about on invisible cords. You must speak the language of the angels to navigate or there is no telling where they may decide you need to go.
Continual light requires clenching a bit of coal and fat in your fist, continuously.
Okay, got to get back to work. Leave your examples of weird, messy, unexpected versions of traditional D&D spells below.