Can I connect grenades with a detonator and use it as a ranged weapon in combat?

We’ve been dipping into Starfinder and I find myself playing a mechanic. I love the idea of using grenades to their fullest advantage, it’s a fun, volatile weapon that turns up as loot too often not to make use of. However, as we level up the average grenade is not as useful as one-by-one weapons and so I thought about connecting them with a detonator and using that as a ranged weapon, or as a dropped weapon that I set off when at a safe distance. A sort of "grenade bomb".

But first, the facts:

Detonators: This conical device primes and detonates explosives (including grenades) with a push of a button. Programming a detonator to a specific package of explosives takes 1 minute, after which the detonator can be triggered in one of several ways. The detonator can be set to ignite its payload with the simple press of a button (no action), a four-digit command code (a move action), or a complex input method, such as scanning your retina or thumbprint (a full action). You choose the triggering method when setting the detonator. A detonator detonates its payload only if it is within 500 feet, but some detonators can make use of signal-boosting technologies at the risk of becoming vulnerable to countermeasures like signal jammers and other effects. Explosives have the same price, effect, and weight as grenades (see page 183). If you successfully set an explosive on a stationary object with a detonator using the Engineering skill, the explosive’s damage ignores half of the object’s hardness. (SCRB, 219)


Grenades: Grenades are thrown weapons that detonate in an explosive radius when they reach the target…The DC of the save is equal to 10 + half the grenade’s item level + your Dexterity modifier. Any penalty you take to your attack roll also applies to this save DC. (SCRB, 183)

Ok, now, from these descriptions, I think it’s possible. The detonator is a little bit confusing because it talks about grenades and explosives as separate where explosives can damage a stationary object. So I wouldn’t be using this grenade bomb to damage an object specifically. It would be against creatures.

Questions, and I’m wondering if this might just be GM discretion:

  • Would this grenade bomb be a ranged weapon or something that I have to plan and place? I.E. Could it be prepared in advance (takes one minutes, but doesn’t specify if that’s in battle or beforehand) and used when needed?
  • How many grenades can be connected to a detonator? Would there be penalties to my attack roll? How would one calculate the save against the grenade bomb?

Thank you all so much!

Firing Ranged Attacks past Other Creatures

I have recently come up against the problem that players want to fire ranged attackes through multiple enemies, or place AoE spells behind multiple enemies. The idea that one could fire an arrow past three or more other creatures (and yes, I understand that the creature does not occupy the whole 5ft square) seemed completely unrealistic to me. I consulted the rules, and found that (as I understand it), no matter how many creatures are between you and the target, they only get +2AC, and there is no restriction on AoE placement.

To solve this problem, I have come up with the following houserules (also includes some ruling clarifications for players, and rules from back section of DMG):

You can make a ranged attack against an enemy on the other side of an ally or enemy creature. However the following rules apply (based on how many creatures are between you and it):

  • One creature: Half-cover (+2 AC)

  • Two creatures: 3/4-cover (+5 AC)

  • Three creatures or more: Full cover (can’t target)

If you do not hit the AC of the creature you were trying to hit, but do hit the AC of one or more of the intervening creatures, then you hit the nearest one you hit the AC for instead. This includes allies.

For spells that specify targeting a location or creature ‘that you can see’, you can cast past one or two creatures, but not past three or more.

The above house-rules have not been playtested yet.

Does anyone have a better solution? Do the rules-as-written actually deal with the problem? Will these house-rules work?

I’m primarily looking for other people who have had a similar problem, and have play-tested house-rules (similar or different to these) to solve it.

Does the Gust of wind spell affect ranged weapons?

Gust of wind Says:

A line of strong wind 60 feet long and 10 feet wide blasts from you in a direction you choose for the spell’s duration. Each creature that starts its turn in the line must succeed on a Strength saving throw or be pushed 15 feet away from you in a direction following the line.

I am wondering if this would either negate ranged attacks on the wizard, or at the very least pose disadvantage on the attacker?

The closest thing I could find to an answer was in the DMG p110, under Strong Wind

A strong wind imposes disadvantage on ranged weapon attack rolls.

My personal experience in archery, is that there is basically no point in even trying to hit a target with anything above a mild wind. As it is very, very difficult at any distance.

Can multiple creatures completely block a ranged attack thus providing total cover?

I’m asking because while DMG p.251 states that 3 or 4 lines blocked by an obstacle gives 3/4 cover if the attack can still reach the target, it doesn’t state what happens if the attack can’t reach the target. I assume total cover but I might be wrong. And, as in the question, what if more than one creature each blocking 3 or 4 lines to a target. Would it create a 1/2 cover (as per Sage Advice Compendium), 3/4 cover, total cover or something else? also considering that only the best degree of cover is applied when more than one source of cover is there, if multiple creatures can ever create total cover.

I find all this to be confusing.

thanks for clarifying.

When a ranged attack deals multiple damage types, can I choose what damage type my Sharpshooter bonus gives?

I am a Blood Hunter (Critical Role class here) with the Sharpshooter and Crossbow Expert feats wielding two hand crossbows. My Crimson Rite allows me to deal an additional 1dx magical damage of some element when I make an attack with a targeted weapon. Sharpshooter simply says that you can add 10 damage to the attack, but it doesn’t specify type. I see a direct comparison to Jeremy Crawford’s ruling on Hunter’s Mark, implying I could choose the damage type of the extra damage. Am I missing some rule that contradicts my assumption?

Strictly RAW, is punching someone with a crossbow a melee attack with a ranged weapon? [duplicate]

I’m exploring ways to combine the Crusher feat with a melee rogue-paladin, and have come into a conundrum- without using my busy bonus action to two-weapon-fight with a club, is there a way to get bludgeoning damage with a melee rogue?

This is my best attempt- using Tavern Brawler to punch people with a crossbow as the strangest of Improvised Weapons. As this is just a rules exploration unlikely to see the light of day, RAI isn’t very relevant here.

RAW, will punching someone with a crossbow allow it to be a melee weapon attack with a ranged weapon, letting me use sneak attack and smite?

Edit for clarity: Unlike questions regarding thrown improvised weapons which outside of being improvised weapons notably lack the finesse or ranged properties, crossbows clearly have the ranged property. This question isn’t about if improvised weapons give it a new property, but rather if they retain them.

If your target has an enemy within 5ft, can you sneak attack without using a finesse or ranged weapon?

A rogue and fighter are engaged in melee combat with a goblin. The rogue is unarmed. Can the rogue activate Sneak Attack?

The rules for Sneak Attack state:

Beginning at 1st level, you know how to strike subtly and exploit a foe’s distraction. Once per turn, you can deal an extra 1d6 damage to one creature you hit with an attack if you have advantage on the attack roll. The attack must use a finesse or a ranged weapon.

You don’t need advantage on the attack roll if another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it, that enemy isn’t incapacitated, and you don’t have disadvantage on the attack roll.

The question arises from the difficulty in parsing the bolded sentence. I have heard 2 interpretations:

  1. You can sneak attack if (you have advantage and the attack is made using a finesse or ranged weapon) or (an enemy of the target is within 5ft, etc).
  2. You can sneak attack if ((you have advantage) or (an enemy of the target is within 5ft, etc)) and the attack is made using a finesse or ranged weapon.

The first interpretation hinges on the idea that when the second paragraph says "on the attack roll" it is still talking about the same "attack" as in the first paragraph. The second interpretation hinges on the idea that the first interpretation is bizarre and unnatural – if that was the intent, there are many ways that it could have been worded to be clearer.

Thematically, I am leaning towards the first – not having a finesse or ranged weapon shouldn’t stop the rogue from exploiting a distracted foe.

Considering RAW only (no twitter please), how should this feature be interpreted?

Does Ocular spell make every eligible damage spells have a critical chance since it becomes a ranged touch attack (ray)?

Ocular spell states:

(…)When you release an ocular spell, its effect changes to a ray with a range of up to 60 feet. If the spell previously would have affected multiple creatures, it now affects only the creature struck by the ray. You must succeed on a ranged touch attack to strike your target with an ocular spell, and the target is still permitted any saving throw allowed by the spell.(…)

Every spell that has a touch attack (melee/range) Do have a critical hit chance (20X2)

So If I was to release an Ocular Fireball (only affects 1 creature now and it still gets the Reflex Half saving throw though). It could indeed be a critical hit.



I know fireball might not be the best spell for this combination, it was just for the sake of the question.

Does Martial Arts Damage Apply to Ranged Attacks with Monk Weapons?

Inspired by an answer to What is the Attack Roll for Deflect Missile?.

The Monk’s Martial Arts feature states that monk weapons are, “…short swords and any simple melee weapons that don’t have the two-handed or heavy property.” (emphasis mine)

For the purposes of my question, I am assuming a 17th level Monk, so that the Martial Arts damage die is 1d10.

My question is that when making a damage roll with a weapon that can be either melee or ranged, like a dagger, which damage die do I roll on a hit for a ranged attack? I am assuming this uses 1d4 because this isn’t a simple melee weapon anymore, but a simple ranged weapon based on the definitions for melee and ranged weapons as defined on page 146 of the PHB:

“A melee weapon is used to attack a target within 5 feet of you, whereas a ranged weapon is used to attack a target at a distance.” (emphasis from the PHB)