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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?

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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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  • \$\begingroup\$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 10 '20 at 22:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ Using the abstraction of the turn structure and action types in this situation seems quite strange. Maybe mark it explicitly as a strict and unintuitive rules as written solution, which only applies if we are in the framework of combat initiative for the entire falling time. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tommi
    Jul 31 '20 at 13:04
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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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Outside of combat, bonus actions can be taken at any time, so it is possible to cast misty step in this way.

Whether or not you have the reflexes to cast misty step when you are less than 30ft from the ground is another question. In my games, I call for a dexterity saving throw for anything reflex related.

Whether or not teleportation spells conserve momentum is up to your group to decide together. Don't wait until you are already falling to have this discussion.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Good point about the timing vs altitude! I do think this answer begs the question about whether or not the character is (or should be) in initiative, though. If things are happening quickly, it seems like initiative ought to be used. But even if it's not, the first answer you link to doesn't quite say what you're using it to say. That answer says combat status has no bearing on a character's ability to use bonus actions. It doesn't say a player has carte blanche to ignore timing considerations. \$\endgroup\$
    – Rykara
    Jul 31 '20 at 16:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Rykara Yes, that's why I suggest using a dex save for the timings. Remember that initiative is (RAW) for combat. It's not just for anything where timing matters. This case is a great example of why, if you use initiative then you make it impossible, that's clearly not a good idea. I chose to address out of combat because the current upvoted answer addresses ONLY in combat, leaving some ground uncovered. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 1 '20 at 0:18

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