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As an Oath of the Crown paladin I have access to a bonus action called Turn the Tide, In summary:

Turn the Tide. As a bonus action, you can bolster injured creatures with your Channel Divinity. Each creature of your choice that can hear you within 30 feet of you regains hit points equal to 1d6 + your Charisma modifier (minimum of 1) if it has no more than half of its hit points.

Me and my GM have discussed this through and really think this would be better off as a once per long rest ability. Otherwise it feels like it's going to be really difficult to kill us off during fairly balanced encounters.

My question is, does this scale well as a bonus action because you have to be fairly low HP anyway or is it better to run this as a long rest activity.

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You've missed one thing. Turn the Tide uses your Channel Divinity, which you can only do once per short or long rest.

When you use your Channel Divinity, you choose which option to use. You must then finish a short or long rest to use your Channel Divinity again.

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Turn the Tide is a use of the paladin's Channel Divinity ability, which specifies:

When you use your Channel Divinity, you choose which option to use. You must then finish a short or long rest to use your Channel Divinity again.

You can only do it once in an encounter - it's not a permanent font of free hit points. It's also pretty minor healing at the end of the day.

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