Early in a dangerous encounter we were able to save our bacon by trapping an Archmage with a Bead of Force, effectively removing him from the fight for 1 minute.

We managed to eliminate his allies several rounds later and then started to gather around the sphere that the Archmage was trapped in so that we could cut him to pieces as soon as the sphere disappeared. There were two rounds left before the sphere was gone.

DM decided to have him cast Time Stop and ruled that doing so would give him time to wait out the sphere and then cast Teleport in order to escape, all while we were frozen in time.

We all disagreed, saying that, because the passage of time is stopped for all but the Archmage, we and the sphere would proceed normally from our perspective and the Archmage would just have more time to write his last will and testament before the sphere disappeared and we dog piled him.

If water kept flowing, if sand dials kept pouring, if spheres of force marched closer to expiration, then time didn’t stop, did it? In that scenario, sentient life was frozen while time kept passing, and that’s not what the spell says. It’s Time Stop, not Life Freeze.

What do you think? Was the DM correct in his ruling, or should the Archmage have been ripped apart by ravenous adventurers?

  • \$\begingroup\$ I feel this question is a duplicate, though there's nothing wrong with that and it in fact helps when people search for answers to their own similar questions. If you feel the question there is not similar enough to yours or the answer doesn't also answer your question, feel free to edit yours to explain. That all said, welcome to the site! Take the tour if you haven't already and visit the help center if you have any further questions. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 14, 2019 at 1:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ Upon realizing that the sphere is an entity/item separate from anyboy affected by the spell, including the caster, these questions are different enough. As such, here's a related question: "How does the Time Stop spell interact with the duration of a previously cast Bless spell?" \$\endgroup\$ Dec 14, 2019 at 3:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ Does this answer your question? Are things besides creatures affected by the Time Stop spell? I believe that question is equivalent to yours given that a Beads of Force is not a creature \$\endgroup\$
    – Ruse
    Dec 14, 2019 at 3:35

1 Answer 1


Time Stop stops time for the caster, not the world

The creature gets “1d4+1 turns in a row” but no one else’s turns happen in between them.

You were right, your DM was wrong. Of course, the lich doesn’t need this spell to get away: Readying Teleport to be cast the instant the force drops ought to do it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks. Some of the other related articles showed a lot of disagreement on the topic, but I can’t see how we wouldn’t be right on this. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tantalos1
    Dec 15, 2019 at 6:02

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