Very similar to this question (Does Warding Bond carry over damage type?), but I can't seem to come to an agreement with one of the other players as this is a different situation.

My character has a shield guardian. If we are both in an AoE poison spell, we both fail the save, does the shield guardian take any damage?

My thought: No. I take 1/2 damage and 1/2 of my poison damage is sent over to the shield guardian. He is immune to poison, and since there is no such thing as untyped damage, he takes no damage.

Other point of view: He takes no damage from the AoE spell, but does take the 1/2 damage from the bond.

What is correct?


3 Answers 3


The Guardian will take no damage

The distinction is that the Guardian's bond specifically states (emphasis mine):

half of any damage to the wearer takes is transferred to the guardian

Based on the standard definition of transferred in this context being "move something to someone else," the damage is guaranteed to be the same type as what you receive. It was your damage, but it moved to the guardian. In this case, the damage is guaranteed poison, which the guardian is immune to.

Warding bond states:

Also, each time it takes damage, you take the same amount of damage.

The confusion here is that the damage isn't explicitly transferred. It's really only mirroring the amount of damage, but mirroring something doesnt mean that it is transferred to you, which is why the confusion arose for that question. Though the effects are thematically similar, the word choice is much more explicit for the guardian.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I think I like the word "transferred." It does seem to prove the point. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jeff
    Jan 12, 2017 at 0:15

I see no reason immunity would work differently than resistance for an effect such as this. If resistance applies, immunity should too. With that, I think this question is already answered by the one you have linked.

For it to take damage, the damage would have to be untyped or change type, and not be of the poison type. Since there is no untyped damage, and nothing in the description of the bond indicates the damage type is changed, it takes poison damage, which it is immune to, thus suffering no damage through the bond.

A related question on how it should apply in the reverse situation is this one.


I'm going to be the voice to disagree. In the damage being transferred, there is an implication that damage was already done. You're just reducing the Shield Guardian's HP by the already determined amount instead of your own. At the point of the transfer, the math is already complete: saves have been made, abilities have been accounted for, etc. Now just kicks in this safety blanket where you get to tap into your Shield Guardian's vitality instead of dying yourself.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I can certainly understand this thought process, but there isn't such a thing as untyped damage. I could see this being psychic damage by this logic, but again, it doesn't say to change the type in the book. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jeff
    Jan 12, 2017 at 0:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would argue this ability implies untyped damage exists, or more accurately is to be understood that damage is already calculated at the point where the affect kicks in. Damage has been dealt. Full stop. Now determine which character(s) HP is reduced by the number(s) already calculated. \$\endgroup\$
    – Euch
    Jan 16, 2017 at 13:31

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