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For example, an Otyugh uses its Tentacle attack against a PC that's 10 ft. away from the Otyugh, and that PC is a melee barbarian with a greataxe.

If the attack hits and the barbarian is grappled, Is the barbarian too far away to attack the otyugh? Can he attack the tentacle?

I think that RAW the barbarian is unable to attack the otyugh, but it sounds rather illogical.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Isn't a grappled creature restrained and thus cannot use the attack action anyway? \$\endgroup\$ Apr 4 '16 at 20:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ As far as I know the restrained condition doesn't affect which actions a PC can choose to do, besides that his speed drops to 0. I'm more interested on the grappled condition anyways. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 4 '16 at 20:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Escroteitor grappling is not the same as restrained, and neither restrict your actions. In the Otyugh's case, you are restrained while grappled. This is a special condition. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 4 '16 at 21:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Good question, rules like this make me want to play dnd again, sorry for the off-topic comment. \$\endgroup\$
    – Stephan
    Apr 5 '16 at 2:32
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Is the barbarian too far away to melee attack the otyugh?

Rules as written, yes, the barbarian is too far away. A barbarian's melee attack range is 5 feet (Melee Attacks, PHB pg 195), and the Otyugh's tentacle attack range is 10 feet (MM pg 248). If you are grappled, your speed is 0 and you cannot move (PHB pg 290). The Otyugh has a special grapple condition that restrains a target, which also makes your movement speed 0 and gives you disadvantage on attacks (PHB pg 292). The monster's tentacle acts as its weapon, and the monster's "hit box" is in a different area. The same is true of the barbarian, he can attack anything within 5 feet of him, but that doesn't change his position to equal the edge of the range. Thus, the Otyugh is grappling you from 10 feet away, out of your range. Thanks to Airatome for also mentioning that the Otyugh's tentacles are not listed as valid target, as opposed to the Roper (MM pg 261), which has it's tentacles listed as targets with AC and hit points. These targets, and lack of targets, in tentacles are built into the challenge rating.

However, as you have mentioned, it seems rather illogical that you cannot attack the tentacle since it IS wrapped around your body. This is an opportunity for you to role-play with your encounter and be creative. Indicate to your DM what you'd like to do. After that, it's up to him/her if you can do it.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I just wanted to suggest an addition to your wonderful RAW answer that the Otyugh is unlike the Roper and a few other tentacled creatures with grapple/restrain attacks in that the Roper's tentacles HAVE an AC and HP value , and thus are legal targets RAW. These were meant to be attacked if the players so choose. Which presents a different case than the tentacles of the Otyugh. Also +1 for the last paragraph mentioning opportunities for roleplaying and attacking a non legal target anyway, because why not! \$\endgroup\$
    – Airatome
    Apr 4 '16 at 23:17
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Yes. Combining Reach with Grapple is very effective.

But the barbarian has plenty of options. He can seek to escape the Grapple. He can attempt a ranged attack or perhaps an ally can toss him a reach weapon. The DM might allow him to attack the Otyugh's tentacles, which would be reasonable but not RAW and I wouldn't allow it myself.

Remember that the Otyugh is a CR5 monster, and Grapple alone is not that powerful. The Grapple-Reach combination and the "Tentacle Slam" is what makes the Otyugh interesting as a foe. Those attacks aside, the damage-per-round for the Otyugh is pretty underwhelming for a CR5 monster - it's on par with a pair of orcs. Those special attacks are what makes an Otyugh worth a spot in the MM.

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