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According to page # 194 "If there’s ever any question whether something you’re doing counts as an attack, the rule is simple: if you’re making an attack roll, you’re making an attack."
Then on page # 192 "Attack The most common action to take in combat is the Attack action, whether you are swinging a sword, firing an arrow from a bow, or brawling with your fists. With this action, you make one melee or ranged attack. See the “Making an Attack” section for the rules that govern attacks. Certain features, such as the Extra Attack feature of the fighter, allow you to make more than one attack with this action."
So back to Making an attack Pages # 193 and 194 " Making An Attack Whether you’re striking with a melee weapon, firing a weapon at range, or making an attack roll as part of a spell, an attack has a simple structure.
- Choose a target. Pick a target within your attack’s range: a creature, an object, or a location.
- Determine modifiers. The DM determines whether the target has cover and whether you have advantage or disadvantage against the target. In addition, spells, special abilities, and other effects can apply penalties or bonuses to your attack roll.
- Resolve the attack. You make the attack roll. On a hit, you roll damage, unless the particular attack has rules that specify otherwise. Som e attacks cause special effects in addition to or instead of damage.
If there’s ever any question whether something you’re doing counts as an attack, the rule is simple: if you’re making an attack roll, you’re making an attack."
So by the rules so far any attack made is an attack action.
Go to page #92 "Extra Attack Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn."
Ok, that is straight forward, any time you attack as an action you can do it twice.
Now go to page # 93 "Multiattack At 11th level, you gain one of the following features of your choice.
Volley. You can use your action to make a ranged attack against any number of creatures within 10 feet of a point you can see within your weapon’s range. You must have ammunition for each target, as normal, and you make a separate attack roll for each target.
Whirlwind Attack. You can use your action to make a melee attack against any number of creatures within 5 feet of you, with a separate attack roll for each target."
So based on the rules as written, any action made as an attack are an attack action. Page #192-194
Volley is an attack feature of the ranger class, making it a single action instead of multiple as is writen and attacks are attack actions.
Extra attack allows you to take two attack actions in a single turn.
So by the rules extra attack gives you two attack actions, volley uses an action, that is an attack making it an attack action automatically meaning you can use it twice according to the rules as written.
I know that was not what Mike Mearls on Sage Advice (http://www.sageadvice.eu/2015/08/01/hunters-volley/) intended for the rules when he helped create them.
However, that is not how it is written in the rule book and stated as hard fact ruling for in game use.
In addition the Sage advice website has this disclaimer "This is an unofficial site of Wizards of the Coast about Dungeons&Dragons, a collection of all the tweets sent by players to the designers."
So it is not official rule interpretation.
So... I contacted a representative named Jake at Wizards of the coast Phone number 1 (800) 324-6496 and Wizards of the coast's official response is to go by the written rules or DM's discretion. Jake stated that you should follow as it is written in the book, making the use of the two volley attacks permittable as stated in rule book. My DM was present during the phone call.
Was it an oversight on the part of the team making the rules? and if so are the rules and the methodology of my line of thought what should be used until a rewrite of the core rule books is made?
Does the rangers 5th LV (Extra attack) make it so the 11th LV (Volley) can be used twice in the same turn RAW allowing for a total of 50 arrows launched at the max? With 10' away from a central spot being a 15' length and when extended to all four sides that length becomes 25', so a 25'x25' square x2 = 50 arrows launched in one turn.