The description of the monk's Deflect Missiles feature says:

[...] you can use your reaction to deflect or catch the missile when you are hit by a ranged weapon attack.

If the attacker misses with the attack roll, am I able to use Deflect Missiles (hence, catch the projectile)? Or does the description imply otherwise? What if I want to catch the projectile intentionally?


RAW, no

However, as a houserule, I'd say it is balanced. If the attack roll is not a huge failure, you can grab the missile.
Spending your reaction to catch, and 1 Ki point to use the missile, is price enough.


RAW no. The ability is based around the original damage roll.

  1. The monk gets hit by a missile.
  2. The monk decides whether or not they want to try to deflect the missile. This post assumes they decide to do so.
  3. The DM rolls damage for the missile attack and the monk rolls [1d10 + Dex mod + monk level] to see if the missile is deflected successfully (this is as a reaction).
  4. If the monk's roll is higher than the damage inflicted, then the monk deflects/catches the missile. If it's lower, he takes the remaining damage.
  5. Optionally, if the damage is reduced to 0: if the monk has a ki point to spend, he can choose (as part of the same reaction) to catch and then send the missile back at the original attacker. The monk has proficiency with the attack, and the damage inflicted uses the same dice (not the same result) as the original attack.

AC represents your defenses, trying to move to avoid an attack: ducking and weaving, being hard to hit.

I think it's within the rules to say "I let the attack hit me". This represents your character not trying to avoid the attack, which your AC covers.

When the arrow, poisoned dagger, or whatever hits you, you then use your reaction to use Deflect Missiles. If you reduce the damage to zero, you catch the missile and can deflect it back.

So yeah, you can totally go for a catch when you know you could avoid the missile otherwise.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. (There is no rule allowing you to be intentionally hit, so this would be a house rule.) Have you house-ruled in such a way in your own games, or seen it ruled this way? How has it worked, in your experience? \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jul 20 '19 at 4:27

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