Eldritch Blast and Repelling Blast - One time or Each Hit?

Stalker0

Adventurer
If I were to hit a single target with 3 beams of an eldritch blast that has the repelling blast invocation, would they get knocked back 10 feet (one time) or 30 feet (3 times)?
 

Shiroiken

Adventurer
I'm pretty sure by RAW and RAI it would be each time. I don't have my PHB handy, and don't recall any Sage Advice on it. The DM could rule otherwise, but I'd have it work for each.
 

MarkB

Hero
I tend to agree that it would be each blast. The wording is "when you hit", and you hit each time you make a successful attack roll.
 

Hawk Diesel

Explorer
I have house ruled that something like repelling blast, frost lance, and grasp of hadar works on each blast, but no more than once per target. That way the battlefied control of the invocations doesn't get out of control.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
I have house ruled that something like repelling blast, frost lance, and grasp of hadar works on each blast, but no more than once per target. That way the battlefied control of the invocations doesn't get out of control.
Grasp of Hadar only works once per turn.
 

FarBeyondC

Explorer
If I were to hit a single target with 3 beams of an eldritch blast that has the repelling blast invocation, would they get knocked back 10 feet (one time) or 30 feet (3 times)?
Assuming the target is still in range after getting knocked back by the first hit, they'd get knocked back by the second. If the target's still in range after getting knocked back by the second hit, they'd get knocked back by the third. And so on.

Which means, to answer your question, the single target hit by 3 beams of eldritch blast (affected by the repelling blast invocation) would get knocked back 30 feet.
 

clearstream

Explorer
If I were to hit a single target with 3 beams of an eldritch blast that has the repelling blast invocation, would they get knocked back 10 feet (one time) or 30 feet (3 times)?
My game ran a couple of years and had two warlocks, who took and used extensively repelling blast. We all agreed (i.e. the players themselves felt) that repel per beam reduced the fun. We tried one repel per entity (so a warlock could knock back three entities by splitting beams, or direct all beams at one entity and knock them back once). That worked okay.

EDIT FWIW I believe the RAW entails one knock back per blast, and I am saying that I found that from extensive play over-tuned.
 

Salthorae

Imperial Mountain Dew Taster
I think that Grasp and Lance were written as once per turn because they realized how powerful Repelling Blast was as written.

I agree RAW it’s per hit. As a DM I hate that it’s per hit though. I can never close with the Warlock because every Warlock I’ve ever had at my tables takes Repelling Blast precisely because it is that good at once per hit.

I added a Str save Vs spell DC to avoid the effect of each hit beyond the first. It’s toned it down enough for me rather than 20-30’ of auto moving someone.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
Maybe an unpopular opinion, but I think it’s great that it’s per hit. 5e has so few options for tactical battlefield control, it’s really nice to have one class that can do it really well. A repelling blasting, hadar’s grasping, lethargic lancing, maddening hexing warlock with a couple of area denial spells like Phantasmal Force, Stinking Cloud, or Evard’s Black Tentacles is just so much fun to play, and such a huge tactical advantage for the party.
 

ClaytonCross

Kinder reader Inflection wanted
I have the book in front of me. Unless there is an errata I don't know about (I have to PHB Errta updates and neither say anything about this) it Repelling blast is written "When you hit a creature" so each hit, knocks its target back 10ft. As point of note the First PHB has "Elemental Affinity (p. 102). The damage bonus applies to one damage roll of a spell, not multiple rolls." so when they made the errata they were looking at wording for effects that apply on hit in use with multiple hit spells and left Repelling Blast as well as Agonizing Blast unchanged.

General FYI. Agonizing Blast and is on hit while Grasp of Hadar and Lance of Lethargy are "once on each of your turns when you hit" Which shows a clear intent to restrict them more which inversely shows intent not to restrict Agonizing Blast or Repelling blast further.

On top of those, Jeremy Crawford replyed to agonizing blast stacking. "Agonizing Blast applies every time eldritch blast hits. " and JeremyECrawford " Eldritch Blast: are the attacks resolved in parallel or sequence? Do you have to pick all the targets first before rolling?" , replying "Multiple attacks on the same turn aren't simultaneous, unless a feature or spell says otherwise." . So you basically resolve each beam as if its it own attach, so you can target someone else if your hit kills the target or if repelling blast knocks it out of range to target it again. (which it can do).

… However, there are some warlock haters out their and some power gamers out there. So if your a GM do what you need to do to but know Wizards of the coast has been very clear on RAW and RAI in this case. If your a player, remember the rules are more of guild line so you still have to play by the GMs house rules because if the GM doesn't maintain control it can be bad for the table. That in mind you do have pretty good footing for a conversation about weather the warlock really needs to be nurfed beyond Wizards intent and rules as written.
 

clearstream

Explorer
I have the book in front of me. Unless there is an errata I don't know about (I have to PHB Errta updates and neither say anything about this) it Repelling blast is written "When you hit a creature" so each hit, knocks its target back 10ft.
Yup, I agree that the RAW is clear. When thinking about balance I have a number of things on my mind. One thing that is not on my mind is the power of a mechanic: strong mechanics are fine. Rather it is how that mechanic is, in play?

Does it warp encounters around it? So not just - is it powerful - but, do I as DM usually need to adjust the encounter or behaviour of creatures in the encounter to deal with this one mechanic, otherwise the encounter becomes tactically weird or uninteresting?

Does it invalidate other strategies? Essentially, do all players choose this because it's so good that other choices are not worth taking. This is actually quite a tricky question to apply, because there are also mechanics that are foundational to a class - they're how the class operates - and of course all players take those. I'm sure people will have different views on this, but for me agonizing is foundational, while repelling invalidates other strategies. Part of the "why" is that repelling often invalidates other class' strategies! Repelling is also something of a one trick - does everything all by itself - a good mechanic plays well with other strategies.

When I (experimentally) change it, do players still consistently take it? This for me is a very useful test. If I tune something, and players still want that thing, there's a really good chance it was over-tuned to begin with. Repelling even once per target is in that bag. Another way of putting this is - does it need to be that good? I think the invocations released with Xanathar's are very suggestive that it does not: that it was an oversight.

Have I enough experience with this in play, to feel confident? This is important. Sometimes, there is a counter or natural balance to something, and you just haven't played enough to know. Some things - magic stones is an example - are good at certain levels, but stop being good later on. Repelling is good at every level it is available. In fact, I think it gets better at higher levels because... no save.

Does the game design take proper account of this strategy? Some mechanics are very strong, but then the game design includes counters to them. Repelling allows a warlock at any level that has it, to push monsters regardless of their CR. Our warlocks in OOTA could push Demogorgon with it. The game design just didn't seem to properly account for the strategy.

So while the RAW is clear, I wouldn't play it that way. Or at the very least, I'd suggest trying an alternative. Is it at the top of the list of things to fix? Probably not, because not all parties will even contain a warlock. If, like mine, your party ends up with two of them... then you might prioritise it higher!
 

Coroc

Explorer
I am not very much into Warlocks, I only use them recently and only very recently have one player in my campaign playing one. so I don't know every rule without reading the books, and I fdo not have them right here atm. Can you enlighten me if this is true:

Someone standing on a ledge or so, above a high chasm or other steep fall would be toast if hit with a repelling blast? Is that the case? Is it the one instakiller spell in 5e? Or do I misinterpret something ?
 

delph

Explorer
When we are talking about this, what about combination of invocations? If I have Repelling and Grasp of Hadar and 3+ beams. At first ray push 10 feet back, second pull 10 feet closer and third 10 feet back again. It can make some nice RP situation (little bit shatered)
 
I am not very much into Warlocks, I only use them recently and only very recently have one player in my campaign playing one. so I don't know every rule without reading the books, and I fdo not have them right here atm. Can you enlighten me if this is true:

Someone standing on a ledge or so, above a high chasm or other steep fall would be toast if hit with a repelling blast? Is that the case? Is it the one instakiller spell in 5e? Or do I misinterpret something ?
If they can't fly, don't have Feather Fall and can't survive 20d6 bludgeoning damage, then they are toast, yes.

But Repelling Blast is far from the only way to knock someone off a cliff - a simple Bull Rush can have the same effect.

Moral: don't stand near the edges of cliffs (unless you are a recurring villain).
 

Coroc

Explorer
If they can't fly, don't have Feather Fall and can't survive 20d6 bludgeoning damage, then they are toast, yes.

But Repelling Blast is far from the only way to knock someone off a cliff - a simple Bull Rush can have the same effect.

Moral: don't stand near the edges of cliffs (unless you are a recurring villain).
Shouldn't there be a saving throw involved? Or a strecngth check at least, or a dex check to catch the fall? What if there is a fixed wall behind the pushed opponent? Would he not take additional damage? I know these topics came along with thunderwave or what it is called and such, but is the to hit roll of the eldritch blast enough? Imagine if you got three blasts them, then it is almost a sure bet to hit at least once, that is a real killer then.
What I try to express is: it is not a 9nth level spell causing this and there is asumingly no save on the targeted party, no matter if it is a hill giant, titan or whatever, it is sent flying by a cantrip?
 

Grondsmash

Villager
So, balance is built into the game system in that spells have one of either test to overcome, either a save or an attack roll. To put both onto a spell is over-kill.

To knock someone off a cliff is such a specific set of circumstances, that if it happens, it should just happen. Remember, the bolts fly directly from the Warlock to the target, so the Warlock must be at an specific angle to accomplish this. It is far from an "instant-kill", as the boss can levitate, feather fall, fly, misty step, dimension door, etc. to avoid any damage. For dramatic movie effect, and cool nemesis effect, on the way down they could grab that dead tree sticking out from the cliff-side to save themselves and then follow the party and attack them from behind at their next encounter. Possibly targeting that annoying party member who pushed them off the cliff. Bosses are not above getting petty and vengeful.

The problem isn't the ability. I find DMs who continually "nerf" characters who outsmart them, or are using an ability in very effective way, need to learn how to do their jobs better, not continually try to change the game to compensate for their own shortcomings.
 
Shouldn't there be a saving throw involved? Or a strecngth check at least, or a dex check to catch the fall? What if there is a fixed wall behind the pushed opponent? Would he not take additional damage? I know these topics came along with thunderwave or what it is called and such, but is the to hit roll of the eldritch blast enough? Imagine if you got three blasts them, then it is almost a sure bet to hit at least once, that is a real killer then.
What I try to express is: it is not a 9nth level spell causing this and there is asumingly no save on the targeted party, no matter if it is a hill giant, titan or whatever, it is sent flying by a cantrip?
If it where a PC I would allow them a saving throw to grab onto a protruding tree root or something, because I'm nice that way (and I follow the rules of heroic narrative). If it was an interesting villain, I would have them escape. Mooks would be dead, and the PCs would get a gold star for good tactics. But RAW they fall off the edge and take the falling damage.

If there is a wall behind then RAW they stop moving. But if the mood took me I might give an extra 1d6 bludgeoning damage, +1d6 bludgeoning damage to the wall.

But the thing is there are lots of ways to do this. Anyone can bull rush an enemy off a cliff. I've seen orcs Thorn Whipped off ledges. Flying creatures can be put to sleep and smash into the ground.

Creative use of the terrain is part of the game.
 

Advertisement

Top