Warding Flare in 5e says that it induces disadvantage on attacking creatures by throwing up a light between you and the attacker.

Does that include spell attacks or just physical attacks?


2 Answers 2


Yes... if

Warding Flare

Also at 1st level, you can interpose divine light between yourself and an attacking enemy. When you are attacked by a creature within 30 feet of you that you can see, you can use your reaction to impose disadvantage on the attack roll, causing light to flare before the attacker before it hits or misses. An attacker that can’t be blinded is immune to this feature. You can use this feature a number of times equal to your Wisdom modifier (a minimum of once). You regain all expended uses when you finish a long rest.

pp 61 of the PHB 5e

So that means that so long as the caster is within 30 feet and can be blinded and the spell he/she's casting requires an attack roll.

For example, this effect wouldn't work on a caster casting magic missile or fireball. It also wouldn't work on a caster who has blindsight. It also wouldn't work if the caster were more than 30ft away.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ For completeness; it also doesn't work for spells that allow a saving throw, since those aren't attack rolls. (Your example of Magic Missile has no defense at all, but Fireball also couldn't be blocked for this reason) \$\endgroup\$
    – Erik
    Nov 30, 2017 at 8:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for that @Erik I've added it to my answer \$\endgroup\$
    – rpgstar
    Nov 30, 2017 at 10:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ To make even more complete, why not add this twitter.com/JeremyECrawford/status/935622022456938497 to show definitively that attack here means all attacks and not just weapon ones. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 30, 2017 at 13:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ also rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/72157/… may be useful \$\endgroup\$
    – rpgstar
    Dec 4, 2017 at 0:56

When you are attacked by a creature within 30 feet of you that you can see (PHB 61)

As the feature does not specify that it only works against one or the other, it works against both.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Except that if the magic user is casting magic missile or fireball they don't have to make an attack roll - so they don't care it would be at disadvantage. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 30, 2017 at 15:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MartinBonner Yes, but then it is not a spell attack either, which the question already (wisely) specified. \$\endgroup\$
    – Szega
    Nov 30, 2017 at 15:43

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