My Dragonborn character is about to get the Extra Attack ability and I'm curious if it can be used with the breath attack. Since a Dragonborn can only use the attack once per short rest I know he can't use it twice, but could he use his breath weapon and then make a melee attack?

I've only seen extra attacks used for the same weapon attacking twice for PCs so I'm not sure if a Dragonborn can use both their breath weapon and melee weapon as an extra attack.


No, Extra Attack can only be used to attack. Extra Attack says:

Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn.

Furthermore, the Dragonborn's Breath Weapon ability says:

You can use your action to exhale destructive energy.

If Breath Weapon gave you, for example, a special ranged weapon you could use to make attacks with, this would work. But what it gives you is a special action. You can use that action to use your Breath Weapon, or you can use the Attack action. There's no way to do both with a single action.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Point of order: There is a way to do both, but it involves using an Action Surge. Additionally, Extra Attack can only be used to attack should be reworded to state it can only be used to perform an attack unless otherwise specified by something (for example: grapple can replace an attack). \$\endgroup\$ – Lino Frank Ciaralli Feb 19 '17 at 5:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ @LinoFrankCiaralli I meant "to do both with one action", but my wording left it ambiguous. Fixed now. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Feb 19 '17 at 5:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ You got my upvote anyways as the answer wasn't wrong. Just a little TOO absolute. LOL. :) \$\endgroup\$ – Lino Frank Ciaralli Feb 19 '17 at 5:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @LinoFrankCiaralli in re: your first comment, a grapple is "a special melee attack." (PHB p.195) So I don't think the rewording you suggest is necessary. \$\endgroup\$ – nitsua60 Feb 19 '17 at 6:04

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