D&D 5E Tasha's Mind Whip vs Charm Person vs Disguise Self for spell selection on an 10th level character

An improvised weapon does 1d4 when used by a character, you catapult that same chair or broom or pot and it does 3d8.
That's because it is moving very fast, like a bullet. If you throw a bullet at someone it doesn't do much damage. It does rather more when you fire it from a gun.
Catapult is a magic spell, the wording in the spell bypasses the physical and logical constraints to implement the effect noted and only the effect noted.
Indeed. So no grapple. A catapulted net does damage and NOTHING ELSE.
 

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ECMO3

Hero
That's because it is moving very fast, like a bullet. If you throw a bullet at someone it doesn't do much damage. It does rather more when you fire it from a gun.

No it is not. A catapulted object only travels at slightly more that 10mph which is not fast enough for a 1lb object to generally seriously injure someone at all (let alone kill most normal civilians). For comparison an NFL QB can throw a 1lb football at about 60mph which is 36 times as much energy as a 1lb object moving at 10mph. Players get hit by those balls all the time and are unhurt.

Indeed. So no grapple. A catapulted net does damage and NOTHING ELSE.

No it restrains anyone who is hit by it, but that is the net doing that, not the spell. This is exactly the kind of thing intended by the games designers for the spell. If the spell did slashing damage the net would usually be destroyed (unless you rolled very low on damage) and as a DM you could (and perhaps should) set an amount of bludgeoning damage that would destroy a net and not impose the condition if it exceeded that threashold.
 

A catapulted object only travels at slightly more that 10mph which is not fast enough for a 1lb object to generally seriously injure someone at all (let alone kill most normal civilians). For comparison an NFL QB can throw a 1lb football at about 60mph which is 36 times as much energy as a 1lb object moving at 10mph. Players get hit by those balls all the time and are undamaged.
Don't know where you are getting that from, since the spell doesn't give any speeds. But it effectively covers 90 feet instantaneously.
No it restrains anyone who is hit by it. This is exactly the kind of thing intended by the games designers for the spell.
You are contradicting yourself. You just said the spell alters the object to do damage and nothing else.

And if we are applying realism, hitting someone with a net does net restrain them. You would need to throw it over them in order to restrain them. A weapon attack is assumed to involve using the weapon in the way is was intended to be used, with a net that requires throwing it over the target. If you just whack someone with it the net would count as an improvised weapon, and would do 1d4 damage but not grapple. Note that using a net as an improvised weapon, you could throw it up to 60 feet. But no restrain effect, since, so far as game mechanics is concerned, it is an improvised weapon, not a net.
 
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ECMO3

Hero
Don't know where you are getting that from, since the spell doesn't give any speeds. But it effectively covers 90 feet instantaneously.

Ok my argument is it is magic and physics does not apply, you are trying to claim that the physics is what causes the damage (i.e. a handkerchief would not hurt so a net does not hurt) but then you ignore the time-distance relationship that would come with physics. If you want to actually apply physics to it there are two answers to speed:

1. easy answer - covers 90 feet in a 6 second turn. This equates to roughly 10 mph

2. More rigorous answer- If you want to say it happens in part of a turn then the time is initially unknown, but it can be mathematically determined through kinematics. In this case you need to consider the rise vs the run out. It travels 90 feet exactly (if it does not hit something). It does not go more than 90 feet, which means it can't be traveling extremely fast. It also travels in a straight line. This means if you are doing this in an area with gravity and a grid there is a maximum of a 5ft deviation in height (i.e. it stays in the same line of squares in 3 dimensions). If it was more than 5 feet it would not travel in a "straight line" in game. If an object is in a straight line for 90 feet with a 5 foot deviation in elevation it will take 1.4 seconds to cover 90 feet and will be going about 40mph. This is still not fast enough for a 1lb object to kill your average human most of the time if hit by it (although it will hurt if the object is small and dense).

The bullet in your earlier example will travel MUCH, MUCH further than 90 feet. A bullet will go for miles! If it only goes 90 feet before stopping it is not fired at anything near the speed of a bullet.

Also your bullet analogy really hits home here. As you said - throwing a bullet would not hurt anyone, just like throwing a handkerchief would not hurt anyone, but we are not talking about throwing something here. firing a bullet out of a gun would hurt someone, just like catapulting a huge 1lb handkerchief would hurt someone .... even though it is a handkerchief.

You are contradicting yourself. You just said the spell alters the object to do damage and nothing else.

The spell causes the damage. It alters the physic.

You contradicted yourself when you said "ever thrown a handkerchief at someone" when we know for a fact the spell does more damage than throwing something at someone because we have rules dictating damage for random objects you throw.

You still have not answered my question - If I catapult a pillow or bedsheet in your game does itdo damage? How many times do I have to ask it to get an answer?

And if we are applying realism, hitting someone with a net does net restrain them.

No it doesn't We are not applying realism. That is my whole point. The rules say if you are hit by a net you are restrained. The rules say the catapult spell causes 3d8 bludgeoning. If you catapult a net you take 3d8 and are restrained.

The rule of cool applies here - there is no legit reason not to allow it and it would not be disruptive or OP. Physics notwithstanding, in terms of gameplay why wouldn't you allow it?
 
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1. easy answer - covers 90 feet in a 6 second turn. This equates to roughly 10 mph
Which is utter nonsense. Lots of things happen in a turn, and if it took a full round for the spell to execute, it would take effect at the start of your next turn. And you wouldn't need a saving throw since you could just step out of the object's path. The catapulted object travels 90 feet in exactly the same time a lightning bolt travels 100 feet.
You still have not answered my question - If I catapult a pillow or bedsheet in your game does itdo damage? How many times do I have to ask it to get an answer?
DM's call. But if if you did catapult a blanket it would ONLY do damage, it wouldn't wrap the person up.
The rules say if you are hit by a net you are restrained.
No. They do not. They say if you make a weapon attack using a net and the attack hits then the target is restrained.
 

ECMO3

Hero
Which is utter nonsense. Lots of things happen in a turn, and if it took a full round for the spell to execute, it would take effect at the start of your next turn. And you wouldn't need a saving throw since you could just step out of the object's path. The catapulted object travels 90 feet in exactly the same time a lightning bolt travels 100 feet.

Your turn covers 6 seconds because despite the initiative order they all happen at the same time. Also I included above the actual procedure if you want to assume it takes less than 6 seconds. You really have two choices here - either it obeys the laws of physics and is traveling relatively slow (because it only goes 90 feet before stopping) or it is not obeying the laws of physics in which case the rest of the argument is irrelevant.

A lightning bolt does not have momentum (because it has no mass), so the physics governing its travel are different and to be clear an actual lightning bolt would not stop until it reached ground, so again here if it stops in mid air at 100 feet it is not obeying the laws of physics .... which is ok because it is magic!

Finally I will add that lightning on earth travels at about 270,000 mph. A Handkerchief traveling at 270,000 mph would obliterate you if it hit you. If your argument is now that the catapulted object is as fast as a lightning bolt travels in real life then your "open" net would liquify anyone it hit. It would sink a battleship, punching through its armor with ease. To understand the comparison here, a railgun will shoot a projectile at about 6000 mph, lightning is over 40 times faster!

The reason it is possible to survive a lightning strike IRL is explicitly because it has no mass and no momentum.


DM's call. But if if you did catapult a blanket it would ONLY do damage, it wouldn't wrap the person up.

Everything is technically the DMs call, but if he rules no damage he is overiding RAW. I agree a blanket does not wrap someone up because while a blanket is on the table on page 150 of the PHB, but it is not further detailed in writing on page 148-152 meaning it has no "special rules" as noted on page 148.

A net on the other hand does have additional properties detailed on page 148. As DM you are free to overrule those or any rule in the game or to rule they just don't apply in this situation. I just don't know why you would.


No. They do not. They say if you make a weapon attack using a net and the attack hits then the target is restrained.

That is not what it actually says, it does not mention a weapon attack at all. This is entire text on on page 148 of the PHB regarding a net -

"A large or smaller creature hit by a net is restrained until freed. A net has no effect on creatures that are formless, or creatures that are huge or larger. A creature can use its action to escape from a net with a DC10 strength check, freeing itself or another creature within its reach on a success. Dealing 5 slashing damage to the net (AC10) also frees the creature without harming it, ending the effect and destroying the net. When you use an action, bonus action or reaction to attack with a net you can make only one attack regardless of the number of attacks you can normally make"


There is nothing at all that mentions a weapon attack with respect to the restrained condition and other items detailed in the PHB do make that distinction when it applies (seeLance, Acid, Alchemists Fire, Oil and Holy Water). Further when they mention an attack later in the text they again do not even specify the type of the attack as a weapon attack, only mentioning an action, bonus action or reaction that allows you to attack. This is notably different than other items, including weapons, where they do specify specify "attack" to achieve the desired effect.

I will also add that a published WOTC adventure actually has a net that drops on adventurers and restrains them without an attack being made (Ghosts of Saltmarsh, Chapter 6, Fortress Level 1, Room 1).

I think you are navigating this with feel instead of reading the rules on it as when you originally questioned it you mentioned grappled, where net actually causes restrained.
 
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Mort

Legend
Supporter
That is not what it actually says, it does not mention a weapon attack at all. This is entire text on on page 148 of the PHB regarding a net -

"A large or smaller creature hit by a net is restrained until freed. A net has no effect on creatures that are formless, or creatures that are huge or larger. A creature can use its action to escape from a net with a DC10 strength check, freeing itself or another creature within its reach on a success. Dealing 5 slashing damage to the net (AC10) also frees the creature without harming it, ending the effect and destroying the net. When you use an action, bonus action or reaction to attack with a net you can make only one attack regardless of the number of attacks you can normally make"


There is nothing at all that mentions a weapon attack with respect to the restrained condition and other items detailed in the PHB do make that distinction when it applies (seeLance, Acid, Alchemists Fire, Oil and Holy Water). Further when they mention an attack later in the text they again do not even specify the type of the attack as a weapon attack, only mentioning an action, bonus action or reaction that allows you to attack. This is notably different than other items, including weapons, where they do specify specify "attack" to achieve the desired effect.

I will also add that a published WOTC adventure actually has a net that drops on adventurers and restrains them without an attack being made (Ghosts of Saltmarsh, Chapter 6, Fortress Level 1, Room 1).

I think you are navigating this with feel instead of reading the rules on it as when you originally questioned it you mentioned grappled, where net actually causes restrained.

I'm not a fan of the net getting to restrain it's target when used with the catapult spell.

While true that the language of the net doesn't seem to preclude it - the language of the catapult spell seems to imply that any object catapulted does bludgeoning damage and that's it. It doesn't get to also do it's own thing:

Choose one object weighing 1 to 5 pounds within range that isn’t being worn or carried. The object flies in a straight line up to 90 feet in a direction you choose before falling to the ground, stopping early if it impacts against a solid surface. If the object would strike a creature, that creature must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, the object strikes the target and stops moving. When the object strikes something, the object and what it strikes each take 3d8 bludgeoning damage.

So all the net does is bludgeoning damage because for purposes of the spell it is not a "net," it is a 3 pound object that is launched by the catapult spell. Otherwise, why not launch a spear that also does piercing damage, or a short sword that does extra slashing damage? Answer, because they are not a "weapon" where the spell is concerned, they are simply an object that does bludgeoning damage.

Another issue, aside from the above if you choose to ignore it. You would have to determine how many HP the net has - because it also takes whatever damage it dishes out. Assigning HP is in Chapter 8 under Running the Game. A Net would probably have 9-18 HP (resilient but not that big, maybe more if the DM is being generous or it's made of a special material) - so even IF you allow this tactic the spell might well destroy it - with multiple uses almost guaranteeing the net being destroyed. So even IF I would allow it (and I think it would get old fast) - the net's not sticking around long.


 

ECMO3

Hero
I'm not a fan of the net getting to restrain it's target when used with the catapult spell.

While true that the language of the net doesn't seem to preclude it - the language of the catapult spell seems to imply that any object catapulted does bludgeoning damage and that's it. It doesn't get to also do it's own thing:

Choose one object weighing 1 to 5 pounds within range that isn’t being worn or carried. The object flies in a straight line up to 90 feet in a direction you choose before falling to the ground, stopping early if it impacts against a solid surface. If the object would strike a creature, that creature must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, the object strikes the target and stops moving. When the object strikes something, the object and what it strikes each take 3d8 bludgeoning damage.

So all the net does is bludgeoning damage because for purposes of the spell it is not a "net," it is a 3 pound object that is launched by the catapult spell. Otherwise, why not launch a spear that also does piercing damage, or a short sword that does extra slashing damage? Answer, because they are not a "weapon" where the spell is concerned, they are simply an object that does bludgeoning damage.

Another issue, aside from the above if you choose to ignore it. You would have to determine how many HP the net has - because it also takes whatever damage it dishes out. Assigning HP is in Chapter 8 under Running the Game. A Net would probably have 9-18 HP (resilient but not that big, maybe more if the DM is being generous or it's made of a special material) - so even IF you allow this tactic the spell might well destroy it - with multiple uses almost guaranteeing the net being destroyed. So even IF I would allow it (and I think it would get old fast) - the net's not sticking around long.

Your last part is absolutely true. The Catapult spell can destroy a net, it explicitly says it does damage to the objece, and I agree with your assertion that it is between 9 and 18 hp.

Going by the rules in the PHB and the statement that 5 hp slashing damage destroys it, my rules are it has 10hps and vulnerability to slashing damage. I also rule it has resistance to bludgeoning, cold and thunder damage though and immunity to radiant, poison and psychic damage. DMs I have had as a player have not made that call though.

I think the intent of the spell is to have you catapult things for other effects. The damage on the catapult spell is very weak with no damage on a save. I think the intent for the spell is to have extra things happen because of what you catapult. For example, catapult a grappling hook to get a rope up and over the 80 foot wall for example, hitting the guard on the wall you shoot it at, damaging him and then anchoring itself there as your fighters start to dash up it.

Also I know sage advice is not rules, but JC has posted that it only does the damage in the spell, not the weapons damage in addition. Essentially the catapult bludgeoning damage would replace the normal damage if you catapult a weapon, just like if you throw a sword you get 1d4 bludgeoning instead of the 1d8 slashing. But in that post he also specified that it could do further damage if you hurled something like alchemists fire. So clearly, according to the games designer it can do more than just the damage from the spell if you hurl something with specific rules.

The other thing to consider here is specific overides general. The net has specific rules for when you are hit by it as do the Alchemists fire and acid mentioned by JC.
 
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