dnd 5e – What should players roll to “deduce” a solution?

The answer is either Intelligence or Wisdom, but which will depend on what kind of process you are trying to represent. You aren’t describing deduction, but rather induction, which is an important part of understanding which Ability to use.


The PHB describes intelligence (pg. 177) as:

… mental acuity, accuracy of recall, and the ability to reason.

If you are trying to represent the character’s ability to recall what the lock or key looked like, or to logically determine a relationship between them, then Intelligence is the Ability to use.

Intelligence is almost the perfect answer for the question as you posed it. Deduction is almost definitely an Intelligence based activity without exception. Except that you aren’t describing deduction, but rather induction.

Deduction may look something like, “All simple, aged copper locks can only be opened by simple, aged copper keys. I want to open a simple, aged copper lock, therefore I must require a simple, aged copper key.” However, deduction requires assumptions that are absolutely true. Is it really true that all key-lock combinations share traits like this? Why can’t an iron key open a copper lock? For example, suppose that a replacement key were created at some point. It may use different materials and styles.

So the kind of inference you are looking for is probably not deduction, and may not even be Intelligence based.

But Really Wisdom

The PHB describes Wisdom (pg. 178) as:

… how attuned you are to the world around you and represents perceptiveness and intuition.

If you want to represent whether a character has noticed something, or is able to reach a conclusion based on intuition rather than reason, then Wisdom is the way to go.

The logical process you are describing is inductive, and a much better match for Wisdom. An inductive process may look something like, “So far, all the locks I have seen are opened by keys made from the same material and in the same style as the lock they open. Therefore, I think that all locks are opened by keys in the same material and style as the lock.”

To me, this sounds like what you are trying to describe. The character is trying to intuit a relationship between locks and keys based on their own experience and observation. Wisdom is a much better fit than intelligence.

Now, if the player still has a problem determining that they should use a simple, aged copper key for their simple, aged copper lock an Intelligence check would be appropriate, because this has become a deductive problem.

dnd 5e – Can Alchemists Experimental elixirs be combined to generate a roll on the potion miscibility table in the DMG?

The rules for mixing potions is a variant rule that a DM has the option to use if they want. The optional rules state:

A character might drink one potion while still under the effects of another, or pour several potions into a single container. The strange ingredients used in creating potions
can result in unpredictable interactions. When a character mixes two potions together, you can roll on the Potion Miscibility table. If more than two are combined, roll again for each subsequent potion, combining the results.

This is a general rule for combining potions and does not specify any limitation with regard to where the potions come from or how they were made. In fact, the item doesn’t even have to be a “potion.” The last effect reads:

For example, a potion of healing might increase the drinker’s hit point maximum by 4, or oil of etherealness might permanently trap the user in the Ethereal Plane.

The implication here is that any magical brew (potions, elixirs, oils, etc) can be used. Therefore, any potion that the Artificer makes can be used in conjunction with the optional rule for mixing potions.

However, because the rule is optional, it is up to the DM to decide if the rule can be used so check with them.

dnd 5e – What is the Attack Roll for Deflect Missile?

Deflect Missile attacks are considered attacks with a monk weapon according to the feature description’s last sentence and the Sage Advice compendium question relating to it.

As such, due to the Martial Arts class feature, you are allowed to choose to use STR or DEX for the attack and damage bonuses. You also get your proficiency bonus for the attack roll as specifically stated by the Deflect Missiles class feature. In addition, the usual Martial Arts monk weapon rules of being able to choose the weapon’s normal damage dice (the projectile/weapon’s damage) or Martial Arts’ monk weapon damage dice applies.

When a monk using Deflect Missiles catches and throws a projectile, what is the damage of the attack?

A missile counts as a monk weapon if thrown via Deflect
Missiles; it deals its damage or Martial Arts damage (the
monk’s choice).

To summarize, the attack roll is d20+(DEX or STR)+Proficiency, and the damage roll is (original weapon damage dice or Martial Arts’ monk weapon damage dice) + (DEX or STR).

Worth noting is that, unlike the original ranged weapon attack targeted at the monk, you are limited to a 20/60 range on the Deflect Missiles attack as clarified by the official PHB errata.

With the errata, the end of the latest Deflect Missiles feature description now contains:

You make this attack with proficiency, regardless of your weapon proficiencies, and the missile counts as a monk weapon for the attack, which has a normal range of 20 feet and a long range of 60 feet.

dnd 5e – If you have dis/advantage on a roll, do you have dis/advantage on a reroll?

This might be a duplicate but I can’t find it.

To be clear this has nothing to do with Halfling Luck trait. Or similar abilities that allow the reroll of a die that rolls a natural 1. (I was apparently incorrect though.)

This has to do with a situation such as the Path of the Zealot barbarian’s Fanatical Focus feature (Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, p. 11), which lets you reroll a save that you fail:

Starting at 6th level, the divine power that fuels your rage can protect you. If you fail a saving throw while you’re raging, you can reroll it, and you must use the new roll. You can use this ability only once per rage.

Situation: Barbarian fails his save and is afflicted with bestow curse. Now he has disadvantage on Constitution checks and saves. He is targeted with disintegrate and fails his save. Using Fanatical Focus, he chooses to reroll that save. He would obviously have disadvantage again since the curse is ongoing. I think we could all agree to that.

However, what if the disadvantage or advantage was only imposed for that effect? Such as a Sorcerer using the Heightened Spell metamagic option:

When you cast a spell that forces a creature to make a saving throw to
resist its effects, you can spend 3 sorcery points to give one target
of the spell disadvantage on its first saving throw made against the

The ability says you “reroll that save”, therefore I argue that you would have disadvantage again as it would still be the first saving throw against the spell albeit a meta-game solutioning of that resolution.

I was unable to find anything on Sageadvice.eu although it is getting harder to sift that data. And I did not find anything in the errata or the Sage Advice Compendium (2017).

Is there anything to support this ruling in the rules that I missed?

This seems intuitive and intended however I see nothing that alludes to it.

dnd 5e – Can I use Flash of Genius on an initiative roll?

If you’re surprised, you cannot use Flash of Genius

Getting the more clear part out of the way first, the rule on “Surprise” state (emphasis mine):

If you’re surprised, you can’t move or take an action on your first turn of the combat, and you can’t take a reaction until that turn ends. A member of a group can be surprised even if the other members aren’t.

The rules on “The Order of Combat” state (emphasis original):


  1. Determine surprise. The DM determines whether anyone involved in the combat encounter is surprised.

  2. Establish positions. The DM decides where all the characters and monsters are located. Given the adventurers’ marching order or their stated positions in the room or other location, the DM figures out where the adversaries are–how far away and in what direction.

  3. Roll initiative. Everyone involved in the combat encounter rolls initiative, determining the order of combatants’ turns.

  4. Take turns. Each participant in the battle takes a turn in initiative order.

  5. Begin the next round. When everyone involved in the combat has had a turn, the round ends. Repeat step 4 until the fighting stops.

Notably, surprise is determined before initiative is rolled, meaning that your Artificer is considered surprised and thus cannot take reactions such as Flash of Genius.

If you’re not surprised, maybe you can?

This is honestly just unclear to me whether you can or cannot take a reaction when initiative is rolled (step 3 in the combat step-by-step mentioned above). We know you can take a reaction before your turn but this is also just a weird time in general, if it even is a time at all.

It is after the combat rules have begun (surprise and positions have been determined and established) and initiative rolls are ability checks so I could see an argument made that the Artificer can use Flash of Genius.

I could also see the argument made that the Artificer cannot use their Flash of Genius because they aren’t reacting to anything. The section on “Reactions” states (emphasis mine):

(…) A reaction is an instant response to a trigger of some kind (…)

I’m not really sure what the Artificer would be reacting to here, though that comes down to the narration of what an initiative roll is more than anything else. The feature literally models the Artificer’s “ability to come up with solutions under pressure” and what that ability can meaningfully be applied to is ultimately up to the GM. I don’t see a lot of convincing details in this argument, but I can see the idea behind it.

I have not yet found any player character features that allow them to do something when initiative is rolled. The closest I’ve found are things like the Bard’s Superior Inspiration feature:

At 20th level, when you roll initiative and have no uses of Bardic Inspiration left, you regain one use.

This just happens and does not use up the Bard’s reaction, so though it isn’t quite the same it does show that something can happen when initiative is rolled. Whether this includes taking reactions, is unclear for me and I have not found any rules explaining precisely when you are first able to use your reaction when not surprised.

That said, Thomas Markov did remember/find in their answer that the feather fall spell exists. A spell that explicitly allows you to take a reaction when somebody falls, an event that can certainly happen outside of combat. This is evidence that could point towards reactions being able to be used at any time and thus supports the idea that Flash of Genius can be used on initiative rolls.

I would rule that Flash of Genius works on initiative rolls

I let my players take actions, and bonus actions outside of combat so I see no reason not to allow them to take reactions outside of combat as well. Thus, I would allow my players to take reactions both inside and outside of combat; Initiative rolls must be happening at at least one of those times, so I would allow them to use Flash of Genius on initiative rolls.

dnd 5e – Can you use a bonus action in the middle of an attack (e.g. after the attack roll, but before the outcome is determined)?


To understand it, we should carefully read the Section Making an Attack. Once you have declared your attack, calculated the proper modifiers, you resolve the attack

  1. Resolve the attack. You make the attack roll. On a hit, you roll damage, unless the particular attack has rules that specify otherwise. Some attacks cause special effects in addition to or instead of damage.

From my understanding, all of this occurs without the player being able to take any other action in between. This is a general rule. Some features, however, have a specific rule that allows them to be declared between the hit and dealing damage, for example, Divine Smite

when you hit a creature with a melee weapon attack, you can expend one spell slot to deal radiant damage to the target, in addition to the weapon’s damage.

This is triggered specifically by the hit, so it is a specific rule that allows the player to break the general rule that nothing should be declared after the hit, but before the damage.

The other smites have no such specific rule, and therefore they can not be used that way.

This is backed up by the fact that hitting and dealing damage are simultaneous events (in-game), therefore, the character can not perform an action in between them.

Probably Intended

The other smites, from my understanding, are supposed to be cast before the attack. If it was intended that they were used like Divine Smite, they would use a similar wording, specifically allowing the player to choose to use them in between hit and damage. The reason Divine Smite is strong is precisely because you can choose to use it only after you hit, never wasting a spell slot for it.

dnd 5e – Can a sorcerer with Spell Sniper use Distant Spell to cast a touch-range spell requiring a melee attack roll from a range of 60 feet?

The scenario works as you explain. To wit:

Distant Spell makes the touch spell’s range 30 feet which is then doubled by Spell Sniper to 60 feet. Spell Sniper is always in effect, so as soon as a touch spell’s range is changed by the meta magic feature, it also gets affected by Spell Sniper. Timing or order of operations doesn’t enter into it.

Frankly, however, if the caster wants to deliver touch spells at even greater ranges and without expending sorcery points, I’d suggest using the spell Find Familiar

Finally, when you cast a spell with a range of touch, your familiar can deliver the spell as if it had cast the spell. Your familiar must be within 100 feet of you, and it must use its reaction to deliver the spell when you cast it.

This method doesn’t get the benefit of ignoring cover and Find Familiar isn’t in every class’s spell list (requiring those classes to take the Magic Initiate feat to get it). On the upside, it is simpler and, more importantly, I think provides useful context to illustrate that your scenario is not game breaking by any means.

dresden files – Can “Emotional Vampire” aid an Empathy roll?

Emotional Vampire provides no passive mechanical benefit

Emotional Vampire (Your Story, p189) is an interesting ability intrinsic to the White Court Vampires but available for other creatures it might apply to. However, it’s benefits are listed:

  • Feeding Touch: Use an appropriate skill to psychological attack (such as Deceit or Intimidation) with contact. Can be used in the same action as Incite Emotion (YS, p173).
  • The Taste of Death: Gain a scene of “recovery” period when you kill a creature with Feeding Touch.

And it has a drawback

  • Feeding Frenzy: The GM can call for Discipline rolls to resist the urge to feed and can compel your High Concept as well.

Emotional Vampire is a fairly iconic ability and probably should (it does require it) be reflected in your Aspects, probably your High Concept, as it is a part of what you are. You can almost definitely Invoke the associated Aspect to determine (appropriate) emotional states, but the ability provides no way to do so itself.

Of course it doesn’t hurt to ask your GM. FATE, including (maybe especially) Dresden Files, is a narrative game and not all bonuses need to be tied to something written down. Just look at almost any of the non-human NPC stat-blocks provided. They’re littered with comments, bonuses, and even automatic success conditions.

pr.probability – Dice roll expectation question

Suppose you roll a dice 100 times, How many times would you expect the most common number to show up.

I.e. roll a dice 100 times and document the frequency of each value, then repeat this process infinitely many times and take the mean of the highest frequency from each trial.

Is there a way to derive a formula or approach to calculate such a value? thanks.

roll20 – i cant do the shortcut to roll a dice on beyond20

When i try to roll the dice from D&D beyond i can only roll it if i (as an example) click on my longsword and then go to the top right and click ”beyond20”, at first before i changed the settings if i hovered over ”longsword” it would popup an icon in red, but now its grey and i cant click it. Which setting do i have to enable/disable to fix this. I have tried looking over through the settings somewhere around five times