I found the following quote on Tumblr:

You are afraid… of yourself. You have to spend your turn running away from yourself, and you have disadvantage while you’re in line of sight of yourself.

Can this circumstance actually happen, RAW, in any of the systems I've tagged (D&D 5e, D&D 3.5e, and Pathfinder (1e, if that needs stating))?

  • \$\begingroup\$ My apologies for the initial atrocious state of the post, I wrote it on mobile. \$\endgroup\$
    – Stackstuck
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 4:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ Why is this being closed as too broad? Do you really thing that this would take a book to answer? Our character limit is more than sufficent, imho. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 5:13
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Can you be more specific about the situation you have in mind? \$\endgroup\$
    – Mark Wells
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 5:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @thedarkwanderer Probably for asking about three different games, some of which are barely related. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 5:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ It was tagged as "D&D". Didn't say which one, so I asked about the usual suspects. That said, with @the dark wanderer's answer, it's pretty clear which system it actually is. \$\endgroup\$
    – Stackstuck
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 16:04

2 Answers 2


Not in Pathfinder or 3.5

Neither system has a disadvantage mechanic, so-- while you can be afraid of yourself-- obviously you can't "have disadvantage while you're in line of sight of yourself".

In general, when a source doesn't specify system and refers to 'advantage' or 'disadvantage', especially if it uses 5e's particular esoteric grammar around these terms (e.g. 'have advantage on stealth' v.s. 'have an advantage in stealth'), the system in question is 5th edition D&D.

Yes, you can apply this effect to a character in 5th edition D&D

However, this is not the result of the frightened condition. In order to incur this effect in total we need to grant disadvantage as being frightened does, but we also need an effect that makes a creature flee from a source rather than merely being unable to move closer to it.

A good example of this is the eyebite spell. An eyebite spell cast at a creature wearing an attuned Ring of Spell Turning for which the caster had selected the 'Panicked' option and which the ring-bearer rolled a total of 20 on their save for and which the caster then failed to save against would result in the caster suffering precisely the effects described in your question, though technically they may still have a Bonus Action left to use on their turn or maybe even an Action if they used Cunning Action or Action Surge or something like that.


Certainly. For example, a Mace of Terror hits all creatures of your choice within 30' - you're within 30' of yourself!

  • \$\begingroup\$ While the Mace of Terror is present in all three editions, it doesn't apply disadvantage on Attack Rolls and Ability Checks to characters who fail their saving throws while they remain within LoS except in 5th edition. It does force actual legitimate running away in all three editions, though, so that's a pretty good find. I will remove my downvote and upvote if you spend some time in the answer explaining the variations in the mace across editions and make the case that the static penalty of the 3.X frightened conditions is essentially equivalent to disadvantage \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 5:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm... not going to do that. You asked if it was possible "in any of the editions [you] tagged" - I linked to a 5e magic item that does exactly what you ask for. 3e or Pathfinder items of the same name have no relevance to my answer; they're totally different, mechanically unrelated items. I precisely answered the question you asked; a downvote is uncalled for. :( \$\endgroup\$
    – Xanthir
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 19:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, you seem to misunderstand, I'm not the OP. I think addressing the edition confusion is a core element of this question, but I respect your right to disagree on that. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 19:54

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