If I repelling blast someone who is restraining a party member and knock them back 10 feet does it end the restrained condition? Or does it knock the player that is restrained 10 feet back too?

The grappled condition ends if they are pulled off, does the same work for restrained?

For instance if I repelling blast a snake restraining a party member would it remove just the snake?

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    \$\begingroup\$ What feature is causing the creature to be restrained? On another note, welcome to the site! Take the tour if you haven't already and visit the help center if you have further questions \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 0:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch He was restrained by a large snake \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael
    Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 21:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @NathanS Every instance if a condition says what causes it to end, so how the creature is being restrained is important. Some restrains end after a time, or when leaving a creatures reach, etc... \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 22:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Medix2 Actually, I think you are right on this after all. I've switched camps into "it matters". It's been clarified and reopened now, so all's well as ends well... \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Commented Nov 27, 2019 at 0:07

3 Answers 3


Depends on how they're restrained.

Since you've clarified that the creature is trapped in the coils of a giant snake, no, they won't get released. Repelling Blast throws the snake backward; this won't untangle whatever is wrapped up in it.

But the Grappled condition says...

The condition also ends if an effect removes the grappled creature from the reach of the grappler or grappling effect, such as when a creature is hurled away by the thunderwave spell.

Yes, I know. Here's the thing: All that rule says is a creature can't continue grappling another creature that's out of reach. It's still up to the DM's judgment whether the snake in fact moves out of reach of its victim. It's perfectly consistent with the rules for the snake and whoever it's grappling to get pushed as a unit.

Repelling Blast says that it pushes its target 10 feet back. This is not absolute. If the target is standing in front of a stone wall, I don't know a DM anywhere who would rule that they're pushed right through the wall, even though the invocation doesn't say "10 feet, or until it hits something solid".

Now replace that stone wall with another creature. Does the target stop moving when they hit a stone golem? An elephant? A dog? A stirge? At some point the answer is going to change from "probably yes" to "probably no, and the other creature either gets pushed with it, or moves out of the way".

Now, what happens when it can't move out of the way? Suppose the target is roped to another guy. There has to be a point of failure somewhere: either the target doesn't move, or the other guy moves with it, or the rope breaks. Repelling Blast doesn't say it moves other creatures, but it also doesn't say it breaks ropes, so the DM will need to rule on where the system stops behaving ideally.

In this case, the snake is the rope, and snapping it in half so that the constricted creature can escape is a pretty drastic (and abusable!) outcome for a 10-foot knockback. More reasonably, a DM would decide that either the snake doesn't move, or it brings its victim with it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Repelling blast says it pushes the target, "up to 10 feet away". One interpretation of the "up to" would include "10 feet, or until it hits something solid". Another would include "10 feet, or until it is restrained by something". Moving 0 feet is one subset of "up to 10 feet.: \$\endgroup\$
    – Kirt
    Commented Sep 10, 2020 at 14:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kirt Did Repelling Blast get an errata update at some point? I could swear it just said "10 feet" when I wrote this. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mark Wells
    Commented Sep 10, 2020 at 18:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ My physical copy is definitely older than '19 and says 'up to'. Perhaps the source you were using when you wrote it was older? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kirt
    Commented Sep 10, 2020 at 21:05

Not necessarily

Much depends on the circumstances that led to the restrained condition in the first place.

Restrained is a higher level status condition than Grappled. Not only is movement impeded, but actions too. Some abilities impose just the grappled condition, and others impose restrained in addition to, or on top of grappled.

Only in a case where the restrained condition is dependent on a grapple would repelling blast remove both conditions.

Look at the Behir. It has a couple of actions that impose the restrained condition in different ways.

Constrict: Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 5 ft., one Large or smaller creature. Hit: 17 (2d10 + 6) bludgeoning damage plus 17 (2d10 + 6) slashing damage. The target is Grappled (escape DC 16) if the behir isn't already constricting a creature, and the target is Restrained until this grapple ends.

So Repelling Blast WOULD remove the grapple and therefore also remove the restrained condition. Now look at Swallow...

Swallow: The behir makes one bite Attack against a Medium or smaller target it is Grappling. If the Attack hits, the target is also swallowed, and the grapple ends. While swallowed, the target is Blinded and Restrained, it has total cover against attacks and other Effects outside the behir, and it takes 21 (6d6) acid damage at the start of each of the behir's turns. A behir can have only one creature swallowed at a time. If the behir takes 30 damage or more on a single turn from the swallowed creature, the behir must succeed on a DC 14 Constitution saving throw at the end of that turn or regurgitate the creature, which falls prone in a space within 10 ft. of the behir. If the behir dies, a swallowed creature is no longer Restrained by it and can escape from the corpse by using 15 ft. of Movement, exiting prone.

Grappled is already gone when Restrained is imposed, restrained is not dependent on grappled in this case, so an effect that causes involuntary movement, like repelling blast, would have no effect on the restrained condition.


A restrained creature will be free.

Grappler feat (Players Handbook pg 167.) gives a character the ability to restrain another. Spells do what they say they do and the repelling blast would cause the creature targeted (grappler) to be moved as that is the effect of the feature. In this case, the creature (being held) who was not a target of the effect, would not be moved. This outcome would end with the previously grappled creature being free from restraint.

Restraining ends because the grapple ends.

The restrained condition imposed by the Grappler feat ends because it only lasts as long as the grapple lasts, and the grapple ends when the grappler can no longer reach the target.

-Ryan C. Thompson

Hold on.

It would make sense, and be well within the DM's purview, for the narrative to offer a method or choice to grappler for holding on and being moved along with the grappled creature. This is not dictated in the rules specifically and would be up to the ruling at the table.

  • \$\begingroup\$ It may be worth noting that the restrained effect would be ended on both the grappler and grapple. "you and the creature are both restrained until the grapple ends". \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 17:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ The restrained condition imposed by the Grappler feat ends because it only lasts as long as the grapple lasts, and the grapple ends when the grappler can no longer reach the target. But what about when the restrained condition is not dependent on a grapple? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 19:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ The PC was restrained by a giant snake... definitely influences your answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Nov 26, 2019 at 22:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch Though the snake restrain also ends when the grapple ends so this does work \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 27, 2019 at 0:10

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