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As I am writing, this question is sitting at 4 reopen votes. Normally, I would just let community moderation work things out (which will probably happen here), but reopen reviews from some users have caused me to question my own perspective on the question. To be clear, I do not mean to call anyone out, or even to say that voting to reopen is wrong. I want to put forward this discussion so that users on either side have a place to offer a more detailed perspective about the state of the question.

The question is brief, so I will reproduce it in its entirety:

Please clarify Multiple Attacks and attack Advantage?

Any time you get advantage on target you roll 2 dice and keep the better roll the opposite for Disadvantage, I get that. How does this effect attacks if you have multiple attacks like from fighters/rangers/monks/warlocks (thirsting blade, eldritch blast), sorcerers (quicken, twin metamagic attack spells), etc? Is advantage only reserved for the initial attack and not any after that?

I initially voted to close, leaving the comment:

It’s going to depend on the feature giving you advantage. Voting to close “needs details” - which advantage feature is confusing you?

My reasoning here is that the number of features and circumstances that give advantage are numerous, and they will work differently based on how they are worded. Therefore, we cannot actually answer OP's question at all, except to say "it depends on the feature or circumstance", which doesn't actually equip OP to understand any individual feature or circumstance they may be using at the table.

Is this question okay to be open in its current state, or should we wait for clarification from the author about the particular feature and/or circumstance that they are using, so as to offer a more constructive answer that can be applied at the table?

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Yes, it needs more details

And the kicker is that at any time a DM can rule that an attack or an ability check can have advantage, or disadvantage, regardless of what other mechanical bits are in play.

This question style is quite common, and not just on this site: someone has a disagreement at the table, they want an answer that affirms their opinion, so they ask a non specific question without giving more detail.

This kind of stuff also happens in real life, and it can get quite frustrating to deal with people who do that as a matter of habit. They are playing a game of 'gotcha'. You see attorneys sometimes do this when asking someone a question in court. (You of course see that a lot on TV and in movies, where it's staged narrative, but the last time I was on a jury I watched the assistant DA do it, and the witnesses (three of them) all walked into the same trap).

For this case, getting more details will allow any answer to address the actual problem at hand, which is as of this writing unclear.

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No, but a follow up question would need more details.

I think the question is pretty clear. As I read it, the question is asking, how to determine for how many attack rolls on the attacker's turn does an advantage exist. And there is no clear statement in the rules telling this, so it seems quite fine question to me. – WakiNadiVellir 12 hours ago

This comment sums it up: we can answer the question. We did. It stands on its own.

We don't know if there are even any concrete misunderstandings about particular mechanics at the table. We don't know if there is a disagreement at the table.

It is helpful to ask any guiding comments that inquire into these intuitively common issues, and we might see the querent address them affirmatively, which would create a new follow-up question that would deal with a specific disagreement or specific interaction about mechanics.

But merely because we have these reasonable assumptions that there could be a more concrete issue behind this, it doesn't necessarily follow that there has to be one.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This is another case where we seem to be doing everything we can not to answer a question. People might not like giving "it depends" as an answer, even when properly and adequately backed up, but in this case, that is the correct answer and making it impossible for anyone to give that answer (if an answer did not already say just that) baffles me. \$\endgroup\$
    – Novak
    Jul 12 at 22:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Novak I’m not sure that’s a helpful or friendly characterization of close voters here. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 12 at 22:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ThomasMarkov it is my considered opinion after years of watching and engaging in these discussions. I have nothing more to say about it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Novak
    Jul 12 at 22:52
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Give a man a fish, and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and feed him for a lifetime.

This is a question where someone is asking us how to fish—and comments demanding that they pick a specific example are, in effect, forcing them to pick a fish themselves without any information about the various fish or what may or may not be relevantly different about them. This is doing a disservice to our readers.1

This is a prime candidate for explaining in an Answer

Which is exactly what we see happening on that question. Cool—system working as intended.

That’s because the answer is it depends. A good answer here should be clear about what the default is, examples of when things last for only one attack or for multiple attacks or even multiple turns, and so on. You’re dealing with a new player who has a basic misunderstanding about the rules—they aren’t going to be able to clarify because they don’t know what they don’t know. That’s what we’re here for. So if the answer to the question is “it depends,” then give that answer.

Anyway, given the above, this is an answerable question—so it should be open. Period, end of discussion. Could you give a better answer if you knew what source of advantage was involved? Yes, perhaps you could. Could you give a good answer more easily if it you had that information? Certainly you could; writing a good “it depends” answer can be a lot of work. But we aren’t here to demand that everyone always must maximize the quality of every answer they are looking for, and we certainly aren’t here to answer only easy questions.

The point of the site is that we have expertise. We can explain to people that their question actually touches upon a much larger scope than they might have thought. But the place to do that is in an answer. Asking them to narrow the scope is just going to cause greater confusion because they don’t know what needs to be narrowed down. And if you do get someone to just pick something to use as an example, and answer only about that example? You very likely haven’t helped them, and may very well have misled them. They were trying to learn the base case, the default, or at the very least how to tell one apart from the other. If they’re forced to pick a single example, and only learn about that example, they have learned very little about their actual problem—which is understanding how to read the rules and what things do or don’t signify. Worse, they may then think that the single example they chose (probably more-or-less at random) extrapolates much more widely than it actually does.

  1. I am not, in any way, assuming bad faith on anyone’s part. I am sure everyone who voted to close it sincerely and genuinely thought it would improve the site and/or the results for this querent. But that doesn’t change my opinion that those votes were misguided, and that the result is actually harmful.
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    \$\begingroup\$ This user has asked 70 questions tagged [dnd-5e] over the last four and a half years. This is not a new player. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 26 at 22:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ThomasMarkov Who the querent is, they’re question history, etc. etc., isn’t supposed to matter under SE rules. I judge the querent a new player because their question reads as a new player—but fine, if you want, we can be less generous about it and say they’re a player who has managed to play the game for four years and ask many questions about it, and yet still not understand it much at all—that would, if we’re being blunt, be very consistent with this user’s history. But that still has no bearing on the validity of the question—it simply is valid. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Jul 27 at 1:55
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Ok, I under stand you need some examples of situations where I had trouble understanding where the "Advantage (roll two d20's and keep the better result") bonus applies.

(Note: the following examples does not take to account the "Help/Aid" action nor used with spells like True Strike as that specifically says "next/first attack" singular and not attacks)

Ex1: Rogue Fighter with two attacks

-R/F uses either Steady Aim or gain attack advantage with a flanking buddy (ally within 5 feet of an enemy) or ranged attacks. Is the initial attack or all attacks with the Fighter's Extra Attack Class Ability have advantage.

Ex2: Any spell that has multi attack rolls like Eldritch Blast or Scorching Ray

-By Lv 17 you have 4 force bolts for Eldritch Blast. On any non True Strike/Help(Aid) occasions where you can get Advantage using this spell, is the attack roll advantage applied to the fist bolt or all of them? To more specific, what if you on either the surprise round or casting while hidden from your foe and using a multi attack roll spells such a Eldritch Blast or Scorching Ray is the "advantage" (roll two d20's and keep the better result) applied to the fist attack roll of the first bolt/ray or is the "advantage" (roll two d20's and keep the better result) applied to all of them as in each and every bolt/ray that requires an attack roll?

I really don't think I can elaborate any further. D&D 5e is so very frustrating at times. Even at the attempt of simplification of a game of "let's pretend" is confusing as business/politics.

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    \$\begingroup\$ You should add which feature is confusing you to your question so that we can address it specifically. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 25 at 14:00

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