The description of the thorn whip cantrip says:

You create a long, vine-like whip covered in thorns that lashes out at your command toward a creature in range. Make a melee spell attack against the target. If the attack hits, the creature takes 1d6 piercing damage, and if the creature is Large or smaller, you pull the creature up to 10 feet closer to you.

If a character has gained immunity to all piercing damage, would that character also be immune to the pull effect of thorn whip?


1 Answer 1



The pull effect of Thorn Whip is contingent on a successful melee spell attack against a creature who is Large-sized or smaller.

If the attack hits, the creature takes 1d6 piercing damage, and if the creature is Large or smaller, you pull the creature...

If both conditions are true (the attack hits and the creature is no larger than Large-sized), then the pull effect would occur whether or not the creature takes damage.

Note that the spell doesn't explain how or why the creature is pulled. Do the thorns grip them? Does the whip wrap around them? Is it some unseen magical force? Regardless, spells do what they say they do. A hypothetical DM could rule otherwise, but by RAW, the creature is pulled simply because the spell says so.

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    \$\begingroup\$ @SeriousBri: Uhm... The whip wrapping around your body? It's not the thorns that pull you, it's te whip. Regardless of the immunity. Also: the poisoned condition is something entirely different than poison damage in 5e. \$\endgroup\$
    – Opifex
    Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 9:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ @opifex be that as it may every DM I have played with has gone down the logical route of 'immune to one, immune to the other'. Myself included. All I meant is that an answer should never really just focus on raw, but also talk about possible or common alternative rulings. Not many people stick entirely to raw. \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 10:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SeriousBri your "logical" route seems pretty illogical. If someone were immune to cold damage I imagine they wouldn't get hurt touching a wall of ice, I wouldn't imagine they can't be pushed off a cliff by it if it starts sliding towards them. I'd be curious as to why you feel immunity to the damage type prevents it's physical properties as well, and also how you explain it in game. If you've got a lot of experience with this perhaps you could write your own answer giving this perspective. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 12:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SeriousBri No, answers do not need to account for every possible alternate ruling. There are countless ways a DM could deviate from the RAW. Answers should be backed by system expertise or evidence. Unless a house ruling is part of the question's scope, or the answerer has encountered said ruling before, such speculation is not necessary. \$\endgroup\$
    – MikeQ
    Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 13:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @mikeq every possible, and 'a common ruling I have seen and suggested directly' are very different. The original comment with my suggestion has been deleted, and acted upon. Probably could do with the rest of these comments removing too. \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 14:03

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