Given the rulings found here and here:

As with most bonus actions, you choose the timing, so the Shield Master shove can come before or after the Attack action. - Crawford

If you have the Shield Master feat, what would happen if you shoved a creature using your bonus action from the feat, and then had no movement left and so could not reach it to perform the Attack action?

Would you simply forfeit your action entirely, or, worst case scenario, would you have to use it against yourself?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Given the tweet you've linked, it's not clear what you're asking. Crawford's tweet contradicts some of his previous rulings regarding Shield Master (for instance); his recent tweets state/restate that you can't use the shove from the Shield Master feat until after you finish your Attack action. You seem to be aware it contradicts his prior rulings (i.e. the ones mentioned in those other questions/answers you linked), so the premise of your question seems to be faulty. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 12, 2018 at 1:37
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ ...It looks like you edited in the link an hour ago, though you asked the question yesterday. In that case, you might want to answer your own question and move the linked tweet into the answer, pointing out that the premise of your question is now impossible if that ruling is obeyed - per the ruling, you can't use the bonus action until you've taken the action. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 12, 2018 at 1:41
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ It would also be helpful to quote the tweets in the question, to guard against link decay and make it easier for answerers to see what the issue is. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 12, 2018 at 6:05

2 Answers 2


You must execute the Attack action

Since you have already used the Attack action for this turn, you cannot choose to do something else with that action. You must attack.

You could attack the creature in a different way

Since the creature is out of range, you could not make a melee attack, but you could make other attacks that qualify (such as a ranged attack using your weapon as an improvised thrown weapon).

Or just attack the empty space in front of you

The Attack action reads...

Pick a target within your attack’s range: a creature, an object, or a location.

You could simply target the location in front of you rather than attacking yourself if you have no other attack options that you want to perform.


You may not do this, the premise is flawed

Crawford has since taken back his previous ruling on Shield Master, [here] and so this scenario is no longer even possible.

Old Ruling:

As with most bonus actions, you choose the timing, so the Shield Master shove can come before or after the Attack action. -Crawford

New Ruling:

Clarification about bonus actions: if a feature says you can do X as a bonus action if you do Y, you must do Y before you can do X. For Shield Master, that means the bonus action must come after the Attack action. You decide when it happens afterward that turn. -Crawford

  • \$\begingroup\$ This is a good example of why to be careful with Crawford tweets. Despite their "official" status, they have yet not been etched in the stone of the Sage Advice Compendium. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 13, 2018 at 17:56
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Even Sage Advice has flip-flopped on rulings, all we ever have is the most recent version \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 13, 2018 at 17:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't doubt you in the slightest, but do you have an example of a Sage Advice reversal? I don't typically compare versions over time, or review areas I think have been settled, so it would be handy info. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 13, 2018 at 20:15
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ They have changed rulings on things such as an Elf's Trance, when a previous ruling made it incorrect. See Pg 2 under "Racial Traits" here \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 13, 2018 at 21:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah yes, I remember the hullabaloo. Thanks. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 14, 2018 at 1:20

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .