[RPG] Can a druid who has pre-cast Alter Self change the appearance of a creature they Wild Shape into


As title suggests, I'm wondering about the flexibility of alter self.

If a druid has alter self active and Wild Shapes into a goat, could they use the change appearance option of alter self to look like a sheep instead? What about a Medium cow?

What about if they Wild Shape into a giant spider, then alter self into an octopus?

I'm aware they wouldn't get any stat changes for any of these appearance changes.

Since I suspect this will be up to DM interpretation, a good answer may include the designer's intent in their answer, in an attempt to address my more specific questions in the question body.

The change appearance option is as follows:

Change Appearance. You transform your appearance. You decide what you look like, including your height, weight, facial features, sound of your voice, hair length, coloration, and distinguishing characteristics, if any. You can make yourself appear as a member of another race, though none of your statistics change. You also can't appear as a creature of a different size than you, and your basic shape stays the same; if you're bipedal, you can't use this spell to become quadrupedal, for instance. At any time for the duration of the spell, you can use your action to change your appearance in this way again.

Best Answer

I was unable to find "designer intent" for this combination, but it seems clear and valid by the rules, and no reason to over-interpret what is going on.

Key parts of Alter Self description are, in general:

While the spell lasts, you can end one option as an action to gain the benefits of a different one.

Also, specifically for the Change Appearance option:

At any time for the duration of the spell, you can use your action to change your appearance in this way again.

So, as long as your character has time to spend actions, and you follow the limitations of not changing basic body plan with Change Appearance, then the combination looks good. It could be a way for the Druid to disguise the power level of the creature that they are currently transformed to. It also gets you sub-aquatic Dire Wolf and other niche but fun combinations.