If I fall off a cliff - say, 1000 feet - can I wait (readied action?) until I am near enough to the ground (my understanding is you fall 500 ft/round) then misty step safely to the ground? Or, does the momentum from the fall carry over through the teleport and I still splatter across the rocks?


up vote 10 down vote accepted

You can't ready bonus actions. They can only be done on your turn. and so you can't ready misty step as a bonus action (you need a bonus action to use misty step) and use it to survive the fall.

A bonus action can be taken only on your turn. You, therefore, can't use Ready with a bonus action. #DnD

The lead rules designer confirmed it.

As V2Blast noted, the top answer to this question says that momentum is conserved.

That said, you could ask your DM about this.

When you describe an action not detailed elsewhere in the rules, the DM tells you whether that action is possible and what kind of roll you need to make, if any, to determine success or failure. p193 PHB

I might allow an acrobatics skill check to use the spell to alter your momentum, and land somewhere safer. Portal style momentum alteration, not negation.

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    I think you might have misrepresented the questions that V2Blast linked to - the two questions seen to disagree with each other with the leading answer on the first seeming to suggest that momentum is not conserved through teleportation. – Tiggerous Aug 19 at 20:14
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    You might want to add that misty step can only be cast as a bonus action, which makes your mention of bonus action more understandable. – Jack Aug 19 at 20:14
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    But aren’t turns just an artifice to simulate simultaneous actions? If so, you would only be falling on your turn. – Harper Aug 20 at 2:24
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    Say you feel from a height of 510 feet. Your turn would start, and you'd fall 500 feet, could you then Misty Step to safety? Just because the OP didn't detail a scenario where it would exactly happen doesn't mean it can't, I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt – Medix2 Aug 20 at 5:40
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    It’s why I said 1000 feet just to make sure you have at least a full round to do something. This shit is confusing. Aren’t you supposed to fall each 500 feet ‘instantly’? With a thousand at least you have a full round of falling before splatter. Could do 1010 feet. Then it’s 500 first round then 500 second then you are in range for misty step. Wouldn’t splat until 3rd round. – Rosco.p.coltrane Aug 20 at 6:19

Yes, you can avoid fall damage using Misty Step by casting it on the round you would have crashed into the ground.

If you fall for 1 round and within the next round successfully cast Misty Step before hitting the ground, you would be able to avoid taking fall damage according to the top answers of the related questions V2Blast linked.

Potential problem. You wouldn't be able to instantly cast Misty Step right away because the farthest you can teleport is 30 feet and you would still be in the midst of falling the last 500 feet. Since bonus actions can't be Readied, but are only cast on your turn, you can't cast Misty Step as a reaction.

According to the following tweet, a bonus action cannot be readied to be taken on a different turn. However, if you are the only one falling and your turn lasts for the duration of the round, you could reasonably wait until the end of the round to cast Misty Step to avoid the fall damage (emphasis in tweet mine).

A bonus action can be taken only on your turn. You, therefore, can't use Ready with a bonus action. #DnD

Ruling for a DM. Your DM could have you make an intelligence or wisdom check to see if you judge correctly how far away the ground is when you cast the spell, but that's merely a suggestion.

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    So your answer is yes, but only if you're falling 501-530 feet? – Josh Aug 20 at 11:26
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    @Josh: Technically it could be up to 539 feet, since falls of less than 10 feet don't cause fall damage. – V2Blast Aug 20 at 23:16
  • Just as a warning, the answers to the linked questions contradict each other as to what happens in this case, and one of them argues (in total sincerity, it seems) that acceleration and momentum don't exist in D&D. – Mark Wells Aug 21 at 15:19
  • Can you explain how the top answers from the question linked above contradict each other? They all for the most part say that teleportation spells do not conserve momentum. – John Carroll Aug 22 at 4:41

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