# Does making an opportunity attack with a ranged weapon provoke an opportunity attack?

If I make an opportunity attack with a ranged weapon (e.g., a crossbow) against an adjacent enemy, does it provoke an opportunity attack as well?

As a general rule, "An opportunity attack is a melee basic attack" (Compendium glossary), so this doesn't come up much.

However, there are special cases: Ninth Legion Student [Lesser Style] lets you use Direct the Strike (ranged 5) "in place of a melee basic attack when making an opportunity attack."

Now, both the Glossary entry for Ranged Attack and the entry for Opportunity Attack explicitly say that ranged powers provoke OAs from adjacent enemies. To me, this means that ranged OAs provoke OAs unless a feat/power/item/feature explicitly lists an exception.

Conclusion: YES. Ranged attacks always provoke opportunity attacks, even when the ranged attack is itself an opportunity attack. It's really uncommon though, as using ranged attacks for OAs is a rare exception to the "only-MBAs-for-OAs" rule, and there'd have to be a second enemy adjacent to you to take advantage of the granted OA anyway. [Note: OAs interrupt the action that provoked them, so causality might get messy to track if this procs a chain of OAs.]

YES, though the term "provokes" applies poorly to D&D 4th edition.

Rather than "provoking opportunity attacks", you should think in terms of Opportunity Actions being triggered by certain conditions. An enemy making a ranged attack adjacent to you is one of the triggers for the basic at-will power Opportunity Attack that everyone has by default.

Thus, Opportunity Attack is one of many Opportunity Actions a creature may have available to them. The important thing to keep in mind here is that a creature may not take an Opportunity Action during its turn.

Thus, there are four relevant scenarios worth considering with ranged opportunity attacks. In each example, "X" can use a Ranged Basic Attack as an Opportunity Attack, and in each X is an enemy to Z and O.

First: X and O are adjacent to one another, and it is O's turn.

XO

O moves away from X.

X O->

O's movement meets the trigger condition for X's Opportunity Attack. X responds by making a Ranged Basic Attack. This interrupt's O's movement, and takes place when O is still adjacent to X. This, in turn, meets O's trigger condition for his Opportunity Attack.

HOWEVER he cannot use that power because it is his turn.

In this example, X's ranged attack triggers O's Opportunity Attack but O cannot use it.

End result:
X attacks O
O does not attack X
O then moves
O resumes his turn

Second: both Z and O are adjacent to X, and it is O's turn.

Z
XO

Once again, O moves away from X.

Z
X O->

Once again, O's movement triggers X's OA, which interrupts O's movement and shoots and triggers O's OA but O cannot take it because its his turn.

HOWEVER this also triggers an OA from Z, who's turn it isn't, thus Z can make an Opportunity Attack against X, interrupting X's OA against O.

End result:
Z attacks X first
X attacks O second
O does not attack X
O then moves
O resumes his turn

Third: both Z and O are adjacent to X, and it is Z's turn.

Z
XO

This time, Z uses a close burst power that allows O to move as a free action.

Z
X O->

Once again, O's movement triggers X's OA, which interrupts O's movement and shoots and triggers O's OA.

This time O can take an OA against X, because it is currently Z's turn, however Z cannot take an OA against X.

End result:
O attacks X first
X attacks O second
Z does not attack X
O then moves
Z resumes his turn

Fourth: both Z and O are adjacent to X, and it is Z's turn.

Z
XO

This time, Z uses a ranged power that allows O to move as a free action.

Z
X O->

This time, X's OA is triggered twice: first by Z's use of a ranged power, second by O's movement. However, a creature can take only one Opportunity Action per turn, so X will only be able to attack either Z or O.

In either case, however, the scenario plays out the same as the third example.

End result:
O attacks X first
X attacks O or Z second
Z does not attack X
O then moves
Z resumes his turn

I hope that wasn't too long and convoluted, but hopefully it helps clarify the order of Opportunity Attack execution :)