While I know you can't cast 2 spells of first level or higher in a turn, and actions can't just be used as bonus actions, is the reverse true?

Say there's a barbarian cleric that rages as a bonus action: can they use healing word as an action, when it normally takes a bonus action? Can bonus actions be used as actions in the case of using a bonus for something else such as rage?

  • \$\begingroup\$ [Related] Can I use a spell with a casting time of "Bonus Action" as my action? \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Dec 8 '17 at 22:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think this should be marked as a duplicate, or else the other title expanded beyond spells. \$\endgroup\$ – mattdm Jan 22 '18 at 20:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @mattdm The question linked as duplicate already has a generic answer regarding Bonus Actions being traded for Actions. That being said this question still provides the site with another way to find that answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Randomorph Jan 22 '18 at 20:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ I've clarified and reopened this, as they are indeed fundamentally different questions -- if anything we can consider this to be the generic or canonical case. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Jan 22 '18 at 20:30

This was answered in a Sage Advice article (you can find it in the Sage Advice compendium).

Q: Can a bonus action be used as an action or vice versa? For example, can a bard use a bonus action to grant a Bardic Inspiration die and an action to cast healing word?

A: No. Actions and bonus actions aren't interchangeable. In the example, the bard could use Bardic Inspiration or healing word on a turn, but not both.

  • \$\begingroup\$ That seems so counter-intuitive! \$\endgroup\$ – Isaac Reefman Aug 12 '18 at 22:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ I guess you could look at it as "casting a spell quickly takes up a certain amount of arcane energy. Within the space of 6 seconds, you can only access a small amount more." \$\endgroup\$ – Isaac Reefman Aug 12 '18 at 22:51

RAW, no; they are separate categories. My own inclination is that bonus actions are specifically quicker than full actions, and I will almost always allow a character to use his full action to perform a bonus action. It doesn't break the game.


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