# D&D 5ESPIRIT GUARDIANS range clarification

#### Ancalagon

##### Dusty Dragon
The spell description is "They flit around you to a distance of 15 feet for the duration". So that's 15 feet from your space, not 2.5 feet inside your space and then another 12.5 feet. "You" are not a point-mass, you are a 5x5 square (assuming medium or small). It seems it's just like any other aura. Is the foe within 15 feet of me? Yes? Then they are in the effect. No? They are not within the effect.

if you take from the "point" inside of you, the sphere will have a diametre of 30 feet. If you take from the square as you suggest, the sphere would have a diameter of 35 feet... so are you sure about that? I can definitely see the logic in your proposal...

#### Swarmkeeper

##### Hero
The problem with this is deciding where the point of origin is within the square. Nothing says you are always in the middle of a square. I can see players whinning and saying that they are on "the edge" of the square or something like it. I interpret the rules as following. If you don't play with a grid, you are the point of origin. If you are playing with a grid, your square is the point of origin.
So rather than the player picking the point in the square, the DM says it is the whole square. Sure, that works - saves time for those effects centered on self and gives the spell a bit of extra reach. How about spells that are not centered on Self but on a point in range? Do you call a whole square a point for those spells?

#### the Jester

##### Legend
So rather than the player picking the point in the square, the DM says it is the whole square. Sure, that works - saves time for those effects centered on self and gives the spell a bit of extra reach. How about spells that are not centered on Self but on a point in range? Do you call a whole square a point for those spells?
If I were using a grid with everything locked to it- in other words, if for example a Medium pc couldn't be partially in multiple squares- I'd require the point to be at an intersection of grid lines, rather than in a square.

#### Swarmkeeper

##### Hero
The point of origin might be a point in space, but chapter 9 also specifies it may be a creature. If it's a creature, then it's going to be the whole creature and so that radius is going to be around their space on the grid.
Chapter 10 (pg 204): "A spell's description tells you whether the spell targets creatures, objects, or a point of origin for an area of effect". Sounds like the spellcasting chapter treats creatures, objects, and points of origin as different things.

I'm not seeing your Chapter 9 claim... can you... er... point it out to us?

#### Bolares

##### Hero
So rather than the player picking the point in the square, the DM says it is the whole square. Sure, that works - saves time for those effects centered on self and gives the spell a bit of extra reach. How about spells that are not centered on Self but on a point in range? Do you call a whole square a point for those spells?
when the spell doesn't target a creature or object that ocupies a space, normally you target a point between squares...

#### billd91

##### Not your screen monkey (he/him)
Chapter 10 (pg 204): "A spell's description tells you whether the spell targets creatures, objects, or a point of origin for an area of effect". Sounds like the spellcasting chapter treats creatures, objects, and points of origin as different things.

I'm not seeing your Chapter 9 claim... can you... er... point it out to us?
Miscounted my chapters. It is, in fact, chapter 10.

#### Swarmkeeper

##### Hero
Miscounted my chapters. It is, in fact, chapter 10.
Ok, what text?

#### billd91

##### Not your screen monkey (he/him)
Ok, what text?
Page 204.
”Typically, a point of origin is a point in space, but some spells have an area whose origin is a creature or an object.”

Spirit Guardians, with a range of self and description of spirits flitting around the caster to a distance of 15 feet, pretty strongly implies the point of origin is the caster, not a point in space.

#### Swarmkeeper

##### Hero
when the spell doesn't target a creature or object that ocupies a space, normally you target a point between squares...
So an AOE spell that targets a point in range and has a radius of 15' (say, darkness) really has a radius of 15'.
Meanwhile an AOE spell that targets self and has a radius of 15' (say, spirit guardians) really has a radius of 17.5'.

I guess the OCD part of me would be happier if they left "radius" out of the descriptions of self-targeted spells and simply indicated "within x feet of you".

#### Bolares

##### Hero
So an AOE spell that targets a point in range and has a radius of 15' (say, darkness) really has a radius of 15'.
Meanwhile an AOE spell that targets self and has a radius of 15' (say, spirit guardians) really has a radius of 17.5'.

I guess the OCD part of me would be happier if they left "radius" out of the descriptions of self-targeted spells and simply indicated "within x feet of you".
I know that looks bad. I get your point. But those things get really messy when using a grid, and it's really hard to go around it. I prefer to go with ease of play rather than breaking squares in to halves, and calculating .5 ft (I'm brazillian, and already have to convert feet to meters in the middle of the game.)

#### Swarmkeeper

##### Hero
Page 204.
”Typically, a point of origin is a point in space, but some spells have an area whose origin is a creature or an object.”

Spirit Guardians, with a range of self and description of spirits flitting around the caster to a distance of 15 feet, pretty strongly implies the point of origin is the caster, not a point in space.
Bam - nice. I'm on board. I just need to get over the literal definition of radius as it pertains to self-centered spells.
Thanks for bringing me around!

#### therealskeletron

##### Villager
if you take from the "point" inside of you, the sphere will have a diametre of 30 feet. If you take from the square as you suggest, the sphere would have a diameter of 35 feet... so are you sure about that? I can definitely see the logic in your proposal...
this is exactly why I thought the AOE should be 5x5 squares on a grid. Obviously the DM has the final call, so i'll let him decide.

thanks for all the input guys...as with everything, it's up to the DM

#### Shiroiken

##### Legend
And it works ok? Doesn't feel OP?
It works fine. I've built my current character around using it, since it's very powerful when you upcast it (gaining 1d8 per level). It's primary benefit is for dealing with mooks/minions, since it's an AoE. While chip damage against the bbeg and other powerful enemies is nice, it doesn't compare to what most other classes can do.
It's strong, but, as a concentration spell, it makes the cleric a high priority target.
You ain't kidding! Until level 8, my mountain dwarf cleric regularly took the dodge action after casting it. I immediately became #1 aggro, despite the wizard blowing stuff up and the barbarian in the bbeg's face. Once I got to level 8 I took Resilience: Constitution so I could only fail the minimum concentration save on a 1 (at level 9 I could no longer fail it). After that I could spend my action healing myself as needed. I've lost concentration due to unconsciousness/dying more than any other reason.

#### MarkB

##### Legend
So an AOE spell that targets a point in range and has a radius of 15' (say, darkness) really has a radius of 15'.
Meanwhile an AOE spell that targets self and has a radius of 15' (say, spirit guardians) really has a radius of 17.5'.

I guess the OCD part of me would be happier if they left "radius" out of the descriptions of self-targeted spells and simply indicated "within x feet of you".
Yeah, this works well in things like the Paladin's Aura of Protection, which affects friendly creatures "within 10 feet of you" (or 30 feet at higher levels).

This would also mean it would play nice with spellcasters of larger size.

#### NaturalZero

##### Hero
if you take from the "point" inside of you, the sphere will have a diametre of 30 feet. If you take from the square as you suggest, the sphere would have a diameter of 35 feet... so are you sure about that? I can definitely see the logic in your proposal...
If you're using a grid and say that the point of origin is only a point within the square, then the edge of the effect ends up filling half a square at the edge of the AOE since we're using round numbers (start in a half square, end in a half square), which is messy but generally effects targets in the last square anyway. Making the radius 32.5 (the whole square is the center) doesn't change who you get hit and is much easier to adjudicate.

#### MatthewJHanson

##### Registered Ninja
Publisher
And it works ok? Doesn't feel OP?

Spirit guardians is one of the best spells. It's probably the best 3rd level cleric spell for combat, and one of the better cleric combat spells overall, but I wouldn't say it's overpowered. I DM a cleric who has spirit guardians use a 7x7 and I'd say it's on par with fireball.

I don't think that a 5x5 vs a 7x7 square will do much to change that either way though. The things that are nice are:
• AOE that only effects enemies.
• AOE that can move every round.
• Continual damage that does not require further action.

#### MarkB

##### Legend
AOE that only effects enemies.
Usually. But it's worth bearing in mind as both DM and player that you only get to designate those who are immune to it when you first cast it, and you have to be able to see them at the time. This can cause issues with things like:
• Vision-obscuring effects in play on the battlefield
• Allies who turn up later
• Summoned creatures who are conjured after the spell is cast

##### Villager
I see a lot of 15 ft. radius remarks on here and that is currently how I run it in my group. My qualm with this answer is that there are spells in the PHB with a specific reference to radius in the description of range/area. Whereas this says 15 ft self. which ultimately translates to 5 ft on either side of you. But as a 3rd level spell that seems underwhelming even with the 3d8 damage. I'm inclined to agree with the radius ruling especially given the concentration tag. But I wanted to put forth this interpretation as a point of interest.

#### Nefermandias

##### Hero
It affects anybody within 15ft of the caster. How people could possibly mess this up, is beyond me.

#### jgsugden

##### Legend
I see a lot of 15 ft. radius remarks on here and that is currently how I run it in my group. My qualm with this answer is that there are spells in the PHB with a specific reference to radius in the description of range/area. Whereas this says 15 ft self. which ultimately translates to 5 ft on either side of you. But as a 3rd level spell that seems underwhelming even with the 3d8 damage. I'm inclined to agree with the radius ruling especially given the concentration tag. But I wanted to put forth this interpretation as a point of interest.
Can you point to the examples you are seeing of this situation?

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