Is there a way to basically hit someone in the face with a charged spell in hand, without provoking an attack of opportunity?

In the core rules it says that you can perform an unarmed strike or natural attack when having a spell charge in hand to discharge the spell upon striking, though when not being shapeshifted or having any feat that gives you a natural attack or improved unarmed strike, this would provoke an attack of opportunity for the guy you want to shove the spell into.

With this, would striking someone with (spiked) gauntlets be considered "touching" him? (Going as far as "removing" the metal on your fingertips?) When I learn, as a druid, to cast spells while being in wild shape, can I attack an enemy using Produce Flame with a natural attack? - The whole idea came from the want to simply smash someone's head in with a fiery fist using that spell, though AoO aren't something I want to provoke.

  • \$\begingroup\$ This is... unclear. Your first sentence ("is there a way to hit someone with a charged spell?") has an answer of yes, which you appear to already know, and I'm not sure how any of this relates to AoOs. What are you actually trying to get at here? Do you just want to know if and how you can attack someone whilst armed or shapeshifted? Or do you want to know how to land an attack (whether armed or unarmed or shapeshifted) that will discharge a touch spell without provoking attacks of opportunity? \$\endgroup\$ Jun 8, 2014 at 3:05
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @JonathanHobbs The question is completely clear; the first line is ambiguous by itself, but simply describes the narrative goal of the poster. The rest makes it very clear that they want a way to combine a touch attack with an unarmed strike without provoking. \$\endgroup\$
    – starwed
    Jun 8, 2014 at 3:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ pretty sure this is a dupe but don't have time to look. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Jun 8, 2014 at 3:27

2 Answers 2


First some background. When you attempt to touch someone with a spell, you are considered armed:

Touching an opponent with a touch spell is considered to be an armed attack and therefore does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

You can also discharge the spell with an unarmed strike, but this does provoke an AoO:

you may make a normal unarmed attack (or an attack with a natural weapon) while holding a charge. In this case, you aren't considered armed and you provoke attacks of opportunity as normal for the attack. If your unarmed attack or natural weapon attack normally doesn't provoke attacks of opportunity, neither does this attack.

So if you have some way of avoiding the normal AoO an unarmed strike provokes, it will let you avoid it here.

"With this, would striking someone with (spiked) gauntlets be considered "touching" him?"

Sadly, spiked gauntlets are not such a way; they are basically a weapon (the spikes) attached to your gauntlet. Contrast that with regular gauntlets, which simply modify your unarmed strike, and are classified as such in the list of weapons.

That said, it's a reasonable thing to bring up to your DM as a house rule. Your other options are to take the feat unarmed strike, or to somehow gain natural attacks.

"When I learn, as a druid, to cast spells while being in wild shape, can I attack an enemy using Produce Flame with a natural attack?"

Yes, this is covered by the rules I've quoted above. A natural weapon doesn't normally provoke, so neither would using it in conjunction with spells like produce flame.

  • \$\begingroup\$ So attacking someone with a normal gauntlet will still provoke an attack of opportunity? \$\endgroup\$
    – salbeira
    Jun 8, 2014 at 11:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ @salbeira That's a separate question which has already been asked. See that question and its answers for all you ever wanted to know on the subject and more. But I suggest just sitting down with your DM (or your players if you are DM) and sorting out some sensible houserules on the subject, because the existing rules are fairly messy. My answer to the linked question gives some houserule suggestions, even. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Jun 8, 2014 at 19:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ We are playing Society, as such we have the "houserule" of "no houserules". But thanks :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – salbeira
    Jun 8, 2014 at 21:42

Spiked Gauntlets are considered an Armed Attack, you would have to be using normal gauntlets for the attack to be considered an Unarmed Attack. That in itself would provoke an attack of opportunity unless you have something that does not allow your unarmed attacks to provoke attacks of opportunity.

In short answer: No unless it was a gauntlet or another form of unarmed attack, and then: No you would provoke.


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