[RPG] Is the 5-foot range of the Help action the range to the ally, the enethe, or both


A player in our group that knows much more than me explained the Help action during game, but then after the game I read the PHB and not sure if he's using it correctly.

I thought I needed to be within 5 feet of the enemy. He said I need to be within 5 feet of the ally.

The Help action says:

You can lend your aid to another creature in the completion of a task. When you take the Help action, the creature you aid gains advantage on the next ability check it makes to perform the task you are helping with, provided that it makes the check before the start of your next turn.

Alternatively, you can aid a friendly creature in attacking a creature within 5 feet of you. You feint, distract the target, or in some other way team up to make your ally’s attack more effective. If your ally attacks the target before your next turn, the first attack roll is made with advantage.

Does the ally, the enemy, or both need to be within 5 feet of me when I take the Help action?

Best Answer

You must be within 5ft of the Enemy

As it states:

You feint, distract the target...

The action of helping is performed by affecting the enemy and not the ally. It could be ruled that either would work but the RAW state you should be within 5ft of the enemy.

It's much easier to distract the enemy you are near than you grab your ally's sword and swing it for them.

Also, this help action applies to ranged attacks as well. It makes little sense to be able to help and archer by standing near them, vs by standing near the target and hindering their ability to dodge.