If one enemy is surprised, and the mage casts flaming sphere next to this surprised enemy, does it have to make the saving throw and take damage for being adjacent to the flaming sphere when the surprise round ends?

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    – V2Blast
    Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 19:00

1 Answer 1


Yes (at the end of the surprised enemy's turn)

Note that there isn't really a "surprise round" in D&D 5th edition. Rather, it is just the first round of combat but surprised creatures can't take actions or reactions until after their first turn (see here):

If you're surprised, you can't move or take an action on your first turn of the combat, and you can't take a reaction until that turn ends. A member of a group can be surprised even if the other members aren't.

So the enemy still has a turn, it just can't actually do anything on it's turn. Except take damage from the flaming sphere: Being surprised has no effect on Flaming Sphere, which just states:

Any creature that ends its turn within 5 feet of the sphere must make a Dexterity saving throw. The creature takes 2d6 fire damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.

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    \$\begingroup\$ @PJRZ Ok, just one clarification, if the enemy rolled higher initiative, do they still take damage? because they would have "ended" the turn sooner that the spell was cast. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 9:38
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AlbertCortada No damage is taken then. You just check at the end of each creature's turn if they are next to the sphere (and not at the end of the whole round). If a creatures ends their turn before flaming sphere is even cast, there is no damage to take. Surprise does not really change anything regarding flaming sphere \$\endgroup\$
    – Sdjz
    Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 9:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ok, thanks @Sdjz, that was the last doubt that I had, I shoud have added it to the question \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 5, 2019 at 9:52

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