I am trying to figure out if an extra attack can be interrupted by another effect and terminate the attack action before all attacks are completed.

The specific example I'm dealing with is thus:

I have a fighter with Riposte and the Crusher feat. Enemy fighter takes an attack action to swing at me with extra attack. Let's say 3 attacks just to put a number on it.

First attack hits, I take damage.

Second attack MISSES. Here's where I need the clarification.

First, can I react with Riposte to attack before the enemy's third attack of the action?

Second, if so, if I hit and the Crusher feat triggers to move the enemy out of range, would that then negate the enemies third attack?

And third, is there any relevant difference in this scenario between the extra attack feature and the multiattack ability?

Did some googling and I think it should work and the third attack should be wasted but could not confirm as I saw opinions both ways.


1 Answer 1


Your Riposte attack triggers immediately after the second attack misses, but Crusher will not prevent a third attack.

The Riposte maneuver states:

When a creature misses you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction and expend one superiority die to make a melee weapon attack against the creature. If you hit, you add the superiority die to the attack’s damage roll.

The rules for reactions state:

A reaction is an instant response to a trigger of some kind [...]

[...] If the reaction interrupts another creature's turn, that creature can continue its turn right after the reaction.

Since the trigger is the second attack missing, your reaction to make a melee attack occurs once the second attack misses, which is before the enemy makes a third attack, since the enemy resumes its turn once your reaction is resolved.

Now, the Crusher feat states:

Once per turn, when you hit a creature with an attack that deals bludgeoning damage, you can move it 5 feet to an unoccupied space, provided the target is no more than one size larger than you.

All this does is move the target five feet away. It does not prevent the enemy from moving back into range and hitting you with the third attack, since the rules for "Moving Between Attacks" state:

If you take an action that includes more than one weapon attack, you can break up your movement even further by moving between those attacks. For example, a fighter who can make two attacks with the Extra Attack feature and who has a speed of 25 feet could move 10 feet, make an attack, move 15 feet, and then attack again.

So Crusher will only prevent a third melee attack from the enemy if the enemy has 0 movement remaining for the turn, and does not have a Reach weapon, though it still would not prevent them from getting angry and throwing their sword at you. The above rule applies the same way to a monster or NPC with the Multiattack action.

  • \$\begingroup\$ If anybody wants 'confirmation' (for some value of confirmation) on multiattack actions: twitter.com/JeremyECrawford/status/876286123168849921 \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 10:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ and if you knock it back 5 feet and it has no more movement, but is now in range of some other player or creature it can choose to use its third attack on them instead. \$\endgroup\$
    – Anketam
    Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 13:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ @AncientSwordRage Twitter is far from from being anywhere near a "confirmation", since tweets are not to be considered official ruling. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 13, 2021 at 10:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ This is probably getting off-topic, but Crusher => an attempt to move back into melee could lead to taking OAs from other creatures, perhaps one with Sentinel or similar that stops them from moving. There are lots of other features that could stop further attacks on you or others, e.g. a Monk with Stunning Strike, someone concentrating on Banishing Smite, or a kill. And there are lots of ways to make an attack as a reaction to another attack, including Riposte, berserker barbarian retaliation, or the Sentinel feat if it targets someone else. So the general idea of interrupting matters. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 13, 2021 at 16:00
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AncientSwordRage: I don't have a problem with the way you phrased it because I already know about the unofficial status of Crawford tweets. But you could have said something like "Crawford agrees with this interpretation for Multiattack actions: [link]." That avoids directly implying any authority on his part. But scare-quotes are probably actually better because it reminds / tells people that didn't already know that his twitter rulings are unofficial, while "agrees with" implies that he's a relevant authority. (Even when he's just writing quick tweets.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 13, 2021 at 16:03

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