Me and my DM had a discussion about whether or not dimension door was an eligible spell for contingency because it doesn’t specify “self” in range.

He argued that the destination was actually the target; not the caster. While it’s worded ambiguously, I don’t think that’s the intention and I haven’t heard anyone else interpret it that way. Am I off in thinking that?

  • \$\begingroup\$ None of the DMs I play with see it that way, nor do I when I DM. Are you looking for a case that you can make which helps the DM see it differently? \$\endgroup\$ May 11 at 4:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the response! We are going to pick up the issue again next session, so if you have any ideas on how I should go about arguing my side (respectfully of course), I would appreciate it! \$\endgroup\$ May 11 at 4:23

1 Answer 1


You can put dimension door into contingency, but there are risks

Targeting is not well defined in 5e, and the spell does not use the term target. You could argue that dimension door also targets the space you teleport to, but there is no rule a spell can only have one target, or that all targets must be of the same type, so even if you do, that is no reason to not also consider the spellcaster and the optional additional creature a target.

Contingency allows you to:

Choose a spell of 5th level or lower that you can cast, that has a casting time of 1 action, and that can target you.

There is no requirement that the spell targets self. Dimension door is 4th level, can target you, and has a casting time of 1 action. You can store it in Contingency.

You however may have another problem:

You cast that spell--called the contingent spell--as part of casting contingency, expending spell slots for both, but the contingent spell doesn't come into effect. Instead, it takes effect when a certain circumstance occurs.

As you cast the spell when you cast the contingency, do you need to decide where to dimension door to, already when you cast contingency? There may be some leeway, because the consensus view is that you pick targets when the spell is released, not when you start casting it, but the rules are not explicit about this, so in the end this is up to your DM.

If they rule that you have to pick the target space when you store the spell, picking a fixed location only works if you stay within range. Picking a relative location ("500 feet behind me") may end up putting you in a space that's occupied, so you "take 4d6 force damage, and the spell fails to teleport you" — probably the last thing you need when you wanted to make a getaway.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Great answer! I really appreciate the help! \$\endgroup\$ May 11 at 13:49

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