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?


This has been officially answered 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\$ 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\$ 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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