combat – Grappling Strike Maneuver + Thorn Whip = 30 ft Grapple?

Grappling Strike is a Battle Master Maneuver that reads:

Immediately after you hit a creature with a melee attack on your turn, you can expend one superiority die and then try to grapple the target as a bonus action (see the Player’s Handbook for rules on grappling). Add the superiority die to your Strength (Athletics) check.

Unlike other maneuvers, it doesn’t specify that you have to be making a Weapon attack, (probably so it will combo with the Unarmed Fighting fighting style that was printed in the same book.)

Thorn Whip is a Cantrip with a Range of 30 ft and the following Description:

You create a long, vine -like whip covered in thorns that lashes out at your command toward a creature in range. Make a melee spell attack against the target. If the attack hits, the creature takes 1d6 piercing damage, and if the creature is Large or smaller, you pull the creature up to 10 feet closer to you. This spell’s damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 5th level (2d6), 11th level (3d6), and 17th level (4d6).

Despite having a 30 ft Range, Thorn Whip counts as a Melee attack. So can a character with access to both use their action to cast Thorn Whip, and then spend the superiority die and a bonus action to attempt a grapple from long range, assuming the other requirements for attempting a Grapple, (such as needing to have an empty hand), are met?

dnd 5e – Does Mind Blank protect against the secondary effects of Tasha’s Mind Whip?

Mind Blank says

Until the spell ends, one willing creature you touch is immune to psychic damage, any effect that would sense its emotions or read its thoughts, divination spells, and the charmed condition. The spell even foils wish spells and spells or effects of similar power used to affect the target’s mind or to gain information about the target.

Tasha’s Mind Whip says

You psychically lash out at one creature you can see within range. The target must make an Intelligence saving throw. On a failed save, the target takes 3d6 psychic damage, and it can’t take a reaction until the end of its next turn. Moreover, on its next turn, it must choose whether it gets a move, an action, or a bonus action; it gets only one of the three. On a successful save, the target takes half as much damage and suffers none of the spell’s other effects.

I’ve bolded the secondary effects.

Trivially we can see that Tasha’s Mind Whip is not a spell that senses emotions or read’s thoughts, it is not a divination spell, and it does not inflict the charmed condition. At first glance, it would seem that a target under the effects of Mind Blank would still suffer the secondary effects of Tasha’s Mind Whip. However, from this question about feeblemind we know that Mind Blank can protect against spells based on their descriptions as well! Reading through Tasha’s Mind Whip once more it does not claim to strike the target’s mind, however, it could be argued that the name itself does. If you interpret Tasha’s Mind Whip to mean a whip that targets the mind, then it can be argued that Mind Blank immunes the spell. Alternatively, if you interpret it to mean you conjure a mind whip of your own and strike your target with it, then it should not be immuned by Mind Blank as you could strike something other than the mind.

I’m curious if there are any RAW or RAI answers to this, or if it’s DM’s discretion. Personally, I believe the fact that it targets an intelligence saving throw means it must be a psychic whip that targets the mind and is therefore immuned by Mind Blank, but I’m not sure that that is supported by the rules explicitly.

dnd 5e – Does Mind whip prevent bonus actions if you take away an action?

The text for mind whip states

You psychically lash out at one creature you can see within range. The target must make an Intelligence saving throw. On a failed save, the target takes 3d6 psychic damage, and it can’t take a reaction until the end of its next turn. Moreover, on its next turn, it must choose whether it gets a move, an action, or a bonus action; it gets only one of the three. On a successful save, the target takes half as much damage and suffers none of the spell’s other effects

Meanwhile, the rules state

[…] anything that deprives you of your ability to take actions also prevents you from taking a bonus action.

If the target chooses a bonus action, it technically shouldn’t be able to do so, as it was deprived of its action. Or is this a case of specific beats general?

dnd 5e – Does immunity to piercing damage make you immune to the pull effect of the Thorn Whip spell?

Nope.

The pull effect of Thorn Whip is contingent on a successful melee spell attack against a creature who is Large-sized or smaller.

If the attack hits, the creature takes 1d6 piercing damage, and if the creature is Large or smaller, you pull the creature…

If both conditions are true (the attack hits and the creature is no larger than Large-sized), then the pull effect would occur whether or not the creature takes damage.

Note that the spell doesn’t explain how or why the creature is pulled. Do the thorns grip them? Does the whip wrap around them? Is it some unseen magical force? Regardless, spells do what they say they do. A hypothetical DM could rule otherwise, but by RAW, the creature is pulled simply because the spell says so.

dnd 5e – Does immunity to piercing damage make you immune to the pull effect of the spell Thorn Whip?

Nope.

The pull effect of Thorn Whip is contingent on a successful melee spell attack against a creature who is Large-sized or smaller.

If the attack hits, the creature takes 1d6 piercing damage, and if the creature is Large or smaller, you pull the creature…

If both conditions are true (the attack hits and the creature is no larger than Large-sized), then the pull effect would occur whether or not the creature takes damage.

Note that the spell doesn’t explain how or why the creature is pulled. Do the thorns grip them? Does the whip wrap around them? Is it some unseen magical force? Regardless, spells do what they say they do. A hypothetical DM could rule otherwise, but by RAW, the creature is pulled simply because the spell says so.

dnd 5e – Does a player character wielding a whip gain advantage if they are 10 feet away from the target?

There’s no reason to believe P1 has advantage in this scenario

Unless there was any reason why an attack would have advantage, such as if the enemy had been hit by guiding bolt or if P2/3 had taken the Help action, then there’s no reason to think that P1 should have advantage due to the positioning of the combantants.

As Thomas Markov’s answer points out, the optional flanking rules require you to be adjacent to the enemy to gain advantage, which P1 was not (they were 10 feet away). That said, as a DM, you could rule that reach weapons count as being adjacent for the purposes of flanking if you wish to do so (at least if it’s just 10 foot reach, since that could get silly otherwise).

The positioning of P2 would not interfere with having advantage or disadvantage, but might give the enemy cover

Whether or not someone else is in the way should not, by itself, grant advantage or disadvantage. However, a DM might rule that P2 being “in the way” might grant the enemy an increased AC due to the rules on cover.

The prone P2 would of course create less cover for the enemy than a not-prone P2. Some DMs might rule that a prone P2 grants no cover (which is what I’d rule), whereas others may grant half-cover (+2 AC) to the enemy. Once P2 gets up, some DMs may rule that the enemy has either half- or even three-quarters-cover (+5 AC).

Further reading: Do prone creatures provide cover?

dnd 5e – Does a player wielding whip gain advantage if it is 10 feet away from the target?

We had an episode in combat tonight that I was not sure how to adjudicate.

A player character (PC1) with a whip was 10 feet away from an enemy.

In between PC1 and the enemy was another player character (PC2) that was prone.

On the far side of the enemy was a third player character (PC3).

Does PC1 have advantage in attacking the enemy with the whip? Why or why not?

If PC2 stands, can PC1 still attack the enemy using the whip, and would this affect advantage in any way?

dnd 5e – Is it possible to use a whip as an instrument because it creates a "supersonic bang"? Can they also attack while "performing"?

I noticed that a whip creates a sonic boom when used.
The definition of a musical instrument is as follows

A musical instrument is a device that has been created or adapted to generate musical sounds. In principle, any object that produces sound can be viewed as a musical instrument – by purpose, the object becomes a musical instrument.

It reads under performance

Your charisma (performance) check determines how well you can inspire an audience with music, dance, drama, storytelling or another form of entertainment.

For this reason, I wondered if I could do something similar to a blade dancer with whips to dance on and attack with my charisma modifier while my character is dancing across the battlefield. As far as I know, this is not an option in 5e (at least not with officially available material, but material that is allowed under excavated arcana would work.

If a changed blade dancer is not an option, I might have thought Bard / Ranger (Bard 1st) with war magic and double vibration. Would that work?