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How does a dragon's blindsight interact with a PC casting darkness or shadows of moil.

Would the PC get advantage on their attack rolls, and would the dragon get disadvantage on it's attack rolls?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Uhm... what exactly about the blindsight ability is it that's confusing you? Describing what you have looked at and what got you stuck should get you much more directly helpful answers. \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 13, 2021 at 21:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ But where are my manners? Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already and see the help center or ask us here in the comments (use @ to ping someone) if you need more guidance. Good Luck and Happy Gaming! \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 13, 2021 at 21:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ At least related, possible dupe: Can a creature with blindsight see another creature that is Heavily Obscured? \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 13, 2021 at 21:22

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Blindsight

can perceive its surroundings without relying on sight.

So effects like Darkness or Shadows of Moil would have no effect on the creature with Blindsight, because they are visual in nature.

There would be no PC advantage or dragon disadvantage.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I'll just note that this is only true if the target is within the range covered by the blindsight ability. If the dragon was attacking at long range somehow (would probably need to be modified dragon as I don't believe any of them have natural long range attacks) then it would get disadvantage if they couldn't see their target. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 14, 2021 at 2:51
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Darkness creates "a heavily obscured area."

In an unofficial clarification on Twitter, Jeremy Crawford addressed the distinction between that and Shadows of Moil

Shadow of Moil heavily obscures you, full stop. The spell also dims the light around you. The fact that you're heavily obscured is a result of the flame-like shadows surrounding you, not the result of being in darkness. This means you're heavily obscured even to darkvision. #DnD

Heavy obscurement means:

A heavily obscured area—such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage—blocks vision entirely. A creature effectively suffers from the Blinded condition (appendix A) when trying to see something in that area." (PHB, p. 183)

The Blinded condition means:

A blinded creature can’t see and automatically fails any ability check that requires sight; Attack rolls against the creature have advantage, and the creature’s Attack rolls have disadvantage. (PHB, App A)

This is how Darkness and Shadow of Moil work: by creating the Blinded condition in your foe. The wording is a little clumsy in my opinion (areas are obscured in rules, not people; blindness is not per-target in conditions text), but it's clear enough what they're saying.

However, "A creature with Blindsight can perceive its surroundings without relying on sight." A creature with Blindsight is still "blinded" by Darkness or Shadow of Moil, but they suffer no penalties from being blinded (within their blindsight radius.)

Because of this, Darkness and Shadow of Moil have no real effect on a creature with Blindsight. They blind it, but that doesn't matter. (There can be corner case exceptions, as with a deafened bat, or as the DM decides.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ "it is not related to the text that follows as per Crawford" — please post a link and relevant quotation. Also note that not all what Crawford says is official ruling. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mołot
    Jul 24, 2021 at 9:54
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    \$\begingroup\$ I edited in the tweet reference that @Mołot requested, and a few page references for clarity. Please review the edit to make sure it retained your original meaning. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 24, 2021 at 12:57

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