The Hex spell reads (PHB, p. 251):

You place a curse on a creature that you can see within range. [...]

If the target drops to 0 hit points before this spell ends, you can use a bonus action on a subsequent turn of yours to curse a new creature.

Hex still requires range and sight requirements to be satisfied when re-applying because of the first line of its description but I am uncertain whether the targeting limitations apply when the spell is not being cast?

The precise situation I am thinking of is moving Hex to a target that is visible through a transparent window. I suspect the answer is no but would appreciate a deeper understanding.

A related component of this question is whether moving Hex is considered to be moving the effect or having multiple targets.



1 Answer 1


It depends on whether your GM thinks you target somebody when you move hex

In Chapter 10: Spellcasting there is the "A Clear Path to the Target" section, which states:

To target something, you must have a clear path to it, so it can't be behind total cover. [...]

This applies to all instances of a spell targeting somebody - but does moving hex to a new creature actually target them?

Furthermore the section on "Total Cover" states:

A target with total cover can't be targeted directly by an attack or a spell, although some spells can reach such a target by including it in an area of effect. A target has total cover if it is completely concealed by an obstacle.

If somebody is behind a window, and thus has total cover, they cannot be targeted by a spell. We run into the same question, does hex target somebody when you move it to a new creature?

The follow Q/A discusses this in relation to the Sorcerer's Twinned Spell Metamagic:

And this Q/A discusses what count as spell targets in general:

There is plenty of debate as to what counts as a target. There's a reason Twinned Spell is asked about so frequently here and it's because what counts as a target for a spell is not particularly clear. Plenty of people disagree so you're going to have to ask your GM whether hex targets somebody when you move it. If it does, then a window will stop it.

What this GM would rule

I would say that hex targets somebody when you move it. You are actively choosing to affect a creature with the spell and for me that it sufficient to conclude that you are targeting them.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Rules designer Jeremy Crawford concurs with your ruling in a series of (unofficial) tweets from November 2016 about hunter's mark, a very similar spell: "The intent is that any creature you target with any spell—including hunter's mark—must be within the spell's range. [...] In a spell, targeting is bound by the spell's range. The effects aren't bound by it." \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    May 2, 2020 at 2:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast Yeah there's actually a large number of Crawford quotes supporting this. This is one of those much-debated things for 5e and I've seen so many arguments about what counts as a target. I haven't seen Crawford's tweets sway most people yet so I chose not to include them. \$\endgroup\$ May 2, 2020 at 3:51

You must log in to answer this question.