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I, the DM, made a trap that when touched, casts teleport on the creature or object that touched it to move them to a new area. The players suspected the trap, and experimented with objects first and found that it teleported those as well. A wizard then tried to activate it with mage hand.

I allowed the hand to trigger the teleport spell and I interpreted the result as the trap teleporting their mage hand. The players protested, and we didn't come up with a clear answer on what should happen to the mage hand as a result of the teleport spell.

Would the result change if the players could see where the trap was teleporting to?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Can you provide some more details of this trap? Is it a Glyph of Warding using the Teleport spell? Or is it something else. We can't really answer without knowing the specifics of the exact spells being used. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Nov 28 '18 at 15:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ Ah, I guess that's where the trouble is, I didn't think about the exact nature of the trap. It's a door that when touched casts the Teleport spell on whatever touched it. The players experimented with objects first and found that it teleported those as well. \$\endgroup\$ – mklingen Nov 28 '18 at 15:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ Unfortunately, we really need that information. It may help if you'd like to hop into Role-playing Games Chat to flesh that out and then you can edit your Question and get some good answers. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Nov 28 '18 at 15:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @mklingen knowing that we are talking about teleport definitely helps (and I've edited it into the question). However, the triggering mechanism is also going to be important to the answer potentially. Since there is nothing in the game currently that acts this way by default (magic items etc.), we would need more details on the combination of things that allows this. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Nov 28 '18 at 15:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Mwr247 Answering is not allowed in comments. Comment answers will get deleted. If you think the question has enough information and have enough rep you can vote to reopen. Otherwise, wait and then answer when and if it does get reopened. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Nov 28 '18 at 16:17
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Mage Hand should not be teleported

From teleport, (PHB, pg. 281):

The spell instantly teleports you and up to eight willing creatures of your choice that you can see within range, or a single object that you can see within range, to a destination you select. If you target an object, it must be able to fit entirely inside a 10-foot cube, and it can't be held or carried by an unwilling creature.

The teleport spell can only affect creatures or objects (given that this is a trap, I'm overlooking the "willing creatures" part of the spell description). Therefore, since the "spectral, floating hand" of mage hand is neither a creature or an object, RAW it would not be teleported.


That said, you are the DM. This could be a unique teleportation spell of your making (which also sidesteps the "willing creatures" problem), although the trouble with this is that your players have no possible way of knowing what this spell is or understanding how it works outside of your descriptions.

Ultimately whether you want to stick to RAW or overrule this is something that you would need to judge based on how you think your players would react to you deviating from RAW for such a trap.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ The description of the trap states that "...the creature that touched it..." Seems like this would invalidate any non-creature target. \$\endgroup\$ – Destruktor Nov 28 '18 at 16:36
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    \$\begingroup\$ Edited to clarify that it affects objects as well. What I wasn't clear on is whether mage hand is an object, is part of the creature that casts it, or if it was something else entirely. \$\endgroup\$ – mklingen Nov 28 '18 at 16:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @mklingen it is a spectral hand, which indicates to me that it is insubstantial -- it is not an object or a creature \$\endgroup\$ – Destruktor Nov 28 '18 at 16:56
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The mage hand would not get teleported

Teleport says:

The spell instantly transports you and up to eight willing creatures of your choice that you can see within range or a single object that you can see within range, to a destination you select.

A mage hand is neither a creature nor an object, it is a spell effect. As such, teleport will have no effect on it.

Teleport needs some tweaking to be used as a trap (and you have the power to do that!)

If you wanted to make a trap that does work on a mage hand, you have the power to create one. When you create a trap sticking to a spell as written is usually a good idea so that you know you aren't breaking anything. However, if the spell doesn't do what you need it to you can tweak it to make something that works for what you need. In this case, you could have tweaked teleport to allow anything that touches it to be teleported and you would also have to rule that they need not be willing since it is a trap after all.

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