How long is a turn in DND? It’s a fair question. For many people, it is hard to keep straight the amount of time a round or a turn will take up. Despite the lengthy amount of time that big fights can eat up in a campaign, these battles rarely last longer than a minute in real-time. Below, we explain how time is calculated both for turns and rounds.
How long is a turn in DND?
According to page 181 of the Player’s Handbook, A turn is about six seconds long. that does not mean, however, that six seconds expire every time a player or NPC takes a turn. Technically, the rounds themselves are six seconds long. While every player or NPC takes their action in about six seconds, these turns all happen during the same round.
Is that realistic?
At first glance, it probably seems like a lot. If you have a dozen players or NPCs, it can take quite a bit of time to sort out everyone’s turn. With a dozen attacks, movements, or spells, the idea of fitting it all within six seconds might seem impossible. However, these acts are all essentially occurring at the same time.
The initiative roll determines who goes first, you can consider the person acting second in initiative order to have taken their action a split second after the character with the highest initiative score.
Six seconds doesn’t sound like a lot at first. But count it out in your head – in that time, think about how many times you might be able to swing an object, recite an incantation, or move to the other side of the room. In the frenzy of combat, a lot can happen in six seconds.
Concluding our Guide
So that’s your answer to “how long is a turn in DND?” We hope this rundown has been helpful to you, and we’re happy to answer any further questions in the comment section below! Need more D&D in your life? Check out our guide to the Best Battlemat for D&D.