Let’s say a PC is fighting against a monster. The monster got the highest initiative so it goes first. After the fight’s gone on for a little bit, the monster runs back, out of the range of the PC’s run range. The player, instead of chasing, readies an action to attack the monster when it charges at him. The monster then charges at him.

Now, does the PC get to hit the charging monster before the monster does its melee basic attack or bull rush, or does it occur after? Also, does the player’s next turn occur after the monster’s current turn ends?


2 Answers 2


The answers to these questions can be found on page 291 (Readied Actions) and page 268 (Immediate Action) of the Player's Handbook.

(Immediate Reaction)
Reaction: [...] If a creature triggers your immediate reaction while moving [...], you take your action before the creature finishes moving but after it has moved at least 1 square.

(Readied Actions)
Immediate Reaction: A readied action is an immediate reaction.

So yes, the player gets to attack the monster before it attacks him.

(Readied Actions)
Reset Initiative: After you resolve your readied action, move your place in the initiative order to directly before the creature or the event that triggered your readied action.

So if the initiative order was:


The turns look like this:

Monster moves out of range.
You ready action.
Round ends.
Monster charges (your readied action procs and changes your initiative).
Round ends.
You do whatever (at your new initiative).
Monster does whatever.
Round ends.

So, the player probably doesn't act again immediately after the monster's turn ends, but will if no one else is involved in combat.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I'd say it differently: Monster begins charge, Your readied action procs, your action is resolved, if the charge was not disrupted the charge action continues to completion else it is wasted, round ends. Things that can disrupt the charge include killing the mob, applying any one of a number of status effects to it, moving it out of range, or just plain getting in its way. \$\endgroup\$
    – Snowbody
    Sep 24, 2011 at 1:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ Readied Actions are Immediate Reactions not Immediate Interrupts. So the monster charges and gets to finish its charge, including the attack. Then any readied actions that are legal go off. Reactions happen after the triggering/procing action while Interrupts happen before. Remember that a Charge is an attack action that involves moving. Otherwise you could stop rogues using Blade Vault with a readied action. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 25, 2011 at 16:58
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @IainAnderson Not true. Movement is a bit different when it comes to immediate reactions (see the first quote, above). Think of each square of movement as an individual unit of action. The reaction must happen after one of these units of action, but can occur before a subsequent unit of action begins. \$\endgroup\$
    – AceCalhoon
    Sep 26, 2011 at 13:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ You're totally right Ace. Otherwise my silly idea would make us immune to most traps, huh? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 27, 2011 at 17:52

See page 160 of the Player's Handbook:

Any time before your next action, you may take the readied action in response to that condition. The action occurs just before the action that triggers it. If the triggered action is part of another character’s activities, you interrupt the other character. Assuming he is still capable of doing so, he continues his actions once you complete your readied action.

Read the rest of the rule carefully, as taking the readied action changes your init.


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