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What’s the conditions that need to be met so that spare the dying can work as a ranged spell.

Basically what I’m asking is, do you need to see the target?

The spell doesn’t account for that and the grave clerics ability doesn’t specify. Can I use spare the dying on a party member that’s around a corner out of sight but still within 30 feet?

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    \$\begingroup\$ How are you able to cast it as a ranged spell? It's range is "touch". \$\endgroup\$ Dec 4, 2023 at 5:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ For Grave Clerics in 5e its range is 30 feet, which I assume is the specific case OP is asking about \$\endgroup\$ Dec 4, 2023 at 5:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'll tag this with dnd-5e, as that game has a Spare the Dying spell and I am not aware of others who do (and most of the questions from new contributors who do not yet know they should always tag with game-edition are from 5e). Let us know if that is wrong. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 4, 2023 at 7:54

1 Answer 1

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You need a clear path to the target

The Grave Domain cleric allows you to cast spare the dying with a range of 30', instead of as a touch spell and as a bonus action if you want. The ability itself does not list any further requirements.

However there is a general requirement that you need a clear path to the target to target1 a creature (in chapter 10, "Spellcasting" of the PHB, p.204).

To target something, you must have a clear path to it, so it can’t be behind total cover.

A creature behind a corner would have total cover, so you cannot target it with the spell, and you cannot use spare the dying on it, wether you can see it, or not. (If the corner was of transparent crystal, it would still block an unobstructed path).


1 In case you wonder, spare the dying does not use the word "target", but a spell that affects only a single creature such as this would consider that creature its target (PHB p. 204)

A typical spell requires you to pick one or more targets to be affected by the spell’s magic. A spell's description tells you whether the spell targets creatures, objects, or a point of origin for an area of effect (described below).

See also here for deeper discussion.

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    \$\begingroup\$ +1 I forgot of about the "clear path". Good point. \$\endgroup\$
    – Thank-Glob
    Dec 4, 2023 at 10:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ ^ I did, too. Pulled my answer because it was objectively wrong. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 4, 2023 at 20:24

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