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I got interested in the cursed item Shield of Missile Attraction, but I have some doubts about how it works. Consider the following scenario:

  • Thurin the dwarven fighter is walking along the city street, wearing full plate armor and wielding this cursed shield for a total AC of 20.
  • Dalena the elven mage is just some steps beyond Thurin (and thus inside the 10-foot radius of the shield's effect). She has a total AC of 15.
  • Greg the thief is planning to kill the mage, from the roof, since she killed his beloved one. He attacks her with his crossbow, and gets a total of 16 on the attack roll.

Since Thurin the fighter has the cursed shield, he becomes the target of Greg's attack. My question is:

  • Does Greg have to use the original attack roll (16, in this case) because the shield changes only the target? In this case, the attack misses and Thurin does not get hurt.
  • Or does Greg have to make a new attack roll? In this case, the dwarf may still get hit.

The first one seems to be more fair, since the attacker actually does not know that the dart will be deviated towards the owner of the shield.

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The first option: the same attack roll is used

As you suspect, the curse of the Shield of Missile Attraction only changes the target, so only one attack roll is made by the attacker.

Whenever a ranged weapon attack is made against a target within 10 feet of you, the curse causes you to become the target instead.

The attack has already been made, and the 16 is now against Thurin's AC, which in your example would case it to miss. From the rules on making an attack (PHB, page 194):

If there's ever any question whether something you're doing counts as an attack, the rule is simple: if you're making an attack roll, you're making an attack.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I would go further and say that the target changes before you even roll. In the steps for making an attack, choosing a target is 1st and rolling is 3rd. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2021 at 23:35

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