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5E [Basic Rules] No Penalty for Making Ranged Attacks When Being in Melee?

Jan van Leyden

Adventurer
I can find no penalty for making ranged attacks when the attacker is in melee. The text on Ranged Attacks doesn't contain anything in this regard, neither does the section on Opportunity Attacks, where experience with 3e and 4e might expect it.

How is the PHB's state on this? I think I might give the attacker the choice of

  • risk opportunity attacks from those around him
  • take disadvantage on his attack for playing it safe
 

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Paraxis

Explorer
page 73 under ranged attacks.

Ranged Attacks in Close Combat
Aiming a ranged attack is more difficult when a foe is next to you. When you make a ranged attack with a weapon, a spell, or some other means, you have disadvantage on the attack roll if you are within 5 feet of a hostile creature who can see you and who isn’t incapacitated.
 

Jan van Leyden

Adventurer
Oops! :blush: So much for concentrated reading...

Anyway, the option to risk an OA in order to get rid of Disadvantage doesn't sound too bad, does it?
 

Paraxis

Explorer
Oops! :blush: So much for concentrated reading...

Anyway, the option to risk an OA in order to get rid of Disadvantage doesn't sound too bad, does it?
Nah that sounds fair to me.

But I think I can explain why that option is not in the rules as written. Currently there is only one thing that causes an OA in the game, that is simple straight forward and easy to remember. Another issue is speed of game play, this makes a decision point for the ranged attacker (go with disadvantage or take the OA), if he chooses the OA then that has to be resolved, maybe multiple ones.

So if you are wanting a little more tactical style game, and don't mind a little slower paced fight, your house rule sounds fine to me. I expect things exactly like this to be in the tactical optional rules in the DMG come November.
 

fjw70

Explorer
Nah that sounds fair to me.

But I think I can explain why that option is not in the rules as written. Currently there is only one thing that causes an OA in the game, that is simple straight forward and easy to remember. Another issue is speed of game play, this makes a decision point for the ranged attacker (go with disadvantage or take the OA), if he chooses the OA then that has to be resolved, maybe multiple ones.

So if you are wanting a little more tactical style game, and don't mind a little slower paced fight, your house rule sounds fine to me. I expect things exactly like this to be in the tactical optional rules in the DMG come November.
I think he meant provoking the OA by moving away and then attacking without disadvantage.
 

Jan van Leyden

Adventurer
I think he meant provoking the OA by moving away and then attacking without disadvantage.
No, no. Paraxis understood it right: the archer remains in the threatened square and tries to shoot anyway. Enemies adjecent to him gain a reaction. Moving away provoking an OA would lead to the same result, though. Only situations where he can't move away would lead to different results.
 

fjw70

Explorer
No, no. Paraxis understood it right: the archer remains in the threatened square and tries to shoot anyway. Enemies adjecent to him gain a reaction. Moving away provoking an OA would lead to the same result, though. Only situations where he can't move away would lead to different results.
Gotcha.
 

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