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I am an Eladrin elf and have the ability to use the misty step spell to teleport with my clothing and items.

However, can I grapple a party member (or NPC or other creature) and use the misty step spell to bring them with me when I teleport? Would they have to be willing?

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2 Answers 2

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If we look at the Range section of the PHB we see this:

Spells, such as the shield spell, affect only you. These spells have a range of self. (PHB pg. 203).

Misty Step has a range of "Self" (PHB pg. 260).

Since the range of Misty Step is self it only affects you and any belongings on your person.

In conclusion - NO, as cool as it would be to do so, Misty step's range limits you to only teleporting yourself not other creatures (willing or no).

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    \$\begingroup\$ @KorvinStarmast Throw baby across chasm, misty step, catch it on the other side while it's still in the air. Wildly irresponsible, but it does has that rule of cool feel to it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew
    Aug 4, 2015 at 13:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ This one of those situations where the rules, balance, and narrative logic conflict heavily. Technically, the baby is a creature, and the range: self spell shouldn't effect them. But if it effects everything else you carry, why would it not effect a baby just because it's alive? What about an insect trapped in a bottle in your bag? What about a parasite inside your body? Logically, all those things will go with you. But if they do... What if you are carrying a party member - now it's a game balance problem. Dimension Door let's you do this, and has a limitation. Misty Step as written doesn't. \$\endgroup\$
    – zeel
    Nov 26, 2019 at 16:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ The answer is correct, but the reasoning is flawed. There are lots of self spells which affect other creatures. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 23, 2021 at 13:45
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    \$\begingroup\$ For example, the spell dream has a range of self, but the beginning of the description says: "This spell shapes a creature's dreams. Choose a creature known to you as the target of this spell." \$\endgroup\$ Aug 23, 2021 at 14:12
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    \$\begingroup\$ You are confusing targeting and affecting. These spells contain provisos which allow them to affect other creatures, but they don't target them (they can't be cast on them). For example, you can't allow another creature to read other people’s minds with Detect Thought. Without the additional provisos allowing them to affect other creatures these spells would be limited to yourself. The reason why teleportation spells state when they will permit a passenger is because if they didn’t, they would only target the spellcaster. \$\endgroup\$
    – Amedeus
    Sep 1, 2021 at 16:45
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Teleportation spells state when they permit a passenger.

Let's compare three spells.

Thunder Step
[...] You can also teleport one willing creature of your size or smaller who is carrying gear up to its carrying capacity. [...]

Thunder step explicitly states that you may bring along another creature.

Dimension Door
[...] You can also bring one willing creature of your size or smaller who is carrying gear up to its carrying capacity. [...]

Dimension door explicitly states that you may bring along another creature.

Misty Step
Briefly surrounded by silvery mist, you teleport up to 30 feet to an unoccupied space that you can see.

Unlike thunder step and dimension door, misty step makes no mention of bringing a long a passenger. Now, the rules for spells state:

Each spell description in Chapter 11 begins with a block of information, including the spell's name, level, school of magic, casting time, range, components, and duration. The rest of a spell entry describes the spell's effect.

The entirety of a spell's effect is contained within its spell description. In the case of misty step, quoted above, there are no effects that are not written in that description. Since the only creature mentioned is the caster, the only creature that teleports is the caster.

Range "self" is a red herring.

Amedeus' answer leverages the fact that the spell has a range of self to argue that you cannot bring along a passenger. This is a red herring. Lots of spells have a range of self and affect more than just the caster. So while their answer comes to the right conclusion, the reasoning given just does not support it. For example, consider the spell dream. It has a range of self, yet:

This spell shapes a creature's dreams. Choose a creature known to you as the target of this spell.

So having a range of self is not valid proof that a spell targets only the caster. Other spells which have a range of self and affect/target other creatures are:

  • detect thoughts
  • dispel evil and good
  • etherealness
  • eyebite
  • fire shield
  • flame blade
  • friends
  • gust of wind
  • pass without trace
  • produce flame
  • scrying
  • time stop
  • vampiric touch
  • wish
  • absorb elements
  • armor of agathys
  • banishing smite
  • blinding smite
  • branding smite
  • crown of stars
  • ensnaring strike
  • gift of gab
  • hail of thorns
  • investiture of flame
  • investiture of stone
  • lightning arrow
  • Melf's minute meteors
  • magic jar
  • primal savagery
  • searing smite
  • shadow blade
  • shadow of moil
  • spirit shroud
  • staggering smite
  • thunderous smite
  • wrathful smite
  • zephyr strike
  • Tenser's transformation
  • Tasha's otherworldly guise
  • speak with plants
  • guardian of nature
  • wrist pocket

So out of 76 spells with a range of only self, 42 (55.3%) of them affect or target more than just the caster. Therefore, "has a range of self" is not a reliable indicator that a spell targets or affects only the caster, in fact, it is the wrong conclusion for more than half of all spells having a range of self.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I fear that this answer is confusing targeting and affecting. These spells contain provisos which allow them to affect other creatures, but they don't target them (they can't be cast on them). For example, you can't allow another creature to read other people’s minds with Detect Thought. Without the additional provisos allowing them to affect other creatures these spells would be limited to yourself. The reason why teleportation spells state when they will permit a passenger is because if they didn’t, they would only target the spellcaster (as is the case with Misty Step). \$\endgroup\$
    – Amedeus
    Sep 1, 2021 at 18:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Amedeus "Target" is used quite broadly in the rules to refer to anyone affected by the effects of a spell. Even victims of area of effect spells a referred to numerous times as targets of the spell. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 1, 2021 at 18:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ That still doesn't address the core issue here - 'Self' by default, only affects you and your belongings (as per RAW). If it did not, you could cast 'self' spells on other creatures - allowing you to cast Searing Smite on a Barbarian for instance. There are additional effects a spell may have which affect (or 'target' as per your def) additional creatures, but these spells, without any of these provisos in the text default to targeting only yourself. \$\endgroup\$
    – Amedeus
    Sep 1, 2021 at 19:08

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