10
\$\begingroup\$

Teleportation Circle allows a caster to cast the spell every day for a year to make a permanent circle in a location.

Does it require the same caster to do this every day? Or could two casters take it in turns ensuring the spell is cast every day between them?

\$\endgroup\$
3
  • \$\begingroup\$ Are you asking for a strict RAW reading only? \$\endgroup\$
    – Cubic
    Nov 15 at 13:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Cubic They didn't specify "strict" RAW so I would imagine answers should either be the literal interpretation, a loose interpretation supported by other text, or a frame challenge in the form of evidence-supported homeruling. Likely a combination of the first two, or maybe first and third. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ifusaso
    Nov 15 at 13:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ The same question - and answer - would apply to other spells that can be "permanentified" by repeated casting. The first example I found was Guards and Wards: "You can create a permanently guarded and warded structure by casting this spell there every day for one year." I wonder whether it would be appropriate to edit the question to a more general form, given that the answer is general, too. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 16 at 11:11
16
\$\begingroup\$

The spell description is unclear, and it's a downtime/world-building activity anyway, so ask the DM.

Teleportation circle says:

You can create a permanent teleportation circle by casting this spell in the same location every day for one year.

It is simply unclear if "you" here restricts who can create the permanent circle. Is it only "you" who cast the spell first, or is it "you" whoever happens to be casting the spell today? Who's to say?

The DM, that's who.

Creating a permanent teleportation circle is a downtime activity. It requires buy in from the party, the DM, or (most often) both to be able to do in the first place. Either the party has to all agree to spend a year returning to the same place every day, or the DM has to agree to get an NPC involved in doing that. This is simply not a question for mechanics. It's a question of narrative, so it's up to the DM as the master story teller, with input from the rest of the players when it will involve downtime.

The answer to this question should not be a surprise.

Michael W. left a comment that captures perfectly how a player and DM should go about handling this situation:

The one thing I'd add to this is that the PC with the spell almost certainly knows the answer to this question in-game as well, so it should be completely fair game to ask the DM before the PC selects the spell, plans resources around getting the circle up, etc. the answer should not be surprising to the PC!

This is very similar to how I handle the wish spell. Wish presents the players with the opportunity to permanently alter the game world, and so a DM should engage with the players on what the looks like. In the same way, teleportation circle gives the wizard a chance to permanently alter how the world looks - it can provide an anchor point for the party’s travels throughout the land. This is an opportunity for the players to engage in a bit of worldbuilding, and this is the sort of engagement that I love to encourage.

\$\endgroup\$
3
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ The one thing I'd add to this is that the PC with the spell almost certainly knows the answer to this question in-game as well, so it should be completely fair game to ask the DM before the PC selects the spell, plans resources around getting the circle up, etc. the answer should not be surprising to the PC! \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael W.
    Nov 15 at 22:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MichaelW. That’s a really great observation. That’s exactly my solution to handling wish, and the DM-player communication I outline there applies perfectly here as well. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 15 at 23:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think it's worth mentioning that "You don't know, nobody has ever tried it before," or a Research roll, can be a perfectly valid answer. But a shrug and a cryptic smile is probably not (though that may be dependent on the game). On the other hand, if the character should know but the player forgets to ask, it might be a good idea to at the very least make a hidden die roll (with penalty, maybe - if the player is absentminded, the character probably should be as well) so you have a solid reply when the player starts complaining about "you should have told me!" \$\endgroup\$
    – Trevortni
    Nov 16 at 22:27
12
\$\begingroup\$

Official lore strongly implies yes

As Thomas Markov's answer notes, the spell's own text is ambiguous on this point. However, the DMG actually has quite a bit to say about the role of permanent teleportation circles in the game world. Perhaps the most relevant passage is this one:

The presence of permanent teleportation circles in major cities helps cement their important place in the economy of a fantasy world. Spells such as plane shift, teleport, and teleportation circle connect with these circles, which are found in temples, academies, the headquarters of arcane organizations, and prominent civic locations. However, since every teleportation circle is a possible means of entry into a city, they’re guarded by military and magical protection.

The important point here is that teleportation circles are created, maintained, and guarded by large organizations, not individuals. The text doesn't explicitly address the creation of these circles, since it is concerned with circles that already exist in the world. However, one obvious benefit of a large organization is the ability to share the responsibility of creating such a circle. For instance, a circle of 10 mages could each trade off weeks staying in town casting the spell each day and still have 9 out of 10 weeks for traveling around. If a circle had to be created entirely by one and only one person, they would much more frequently be the provenance of lone mages in secluded towers rather than temples, academies, etc., since mages are famously mistrustful of each other, so cases where one mage would be willing to take on the burden of staying in one place for a year, and where other mages would be willing to trust them to do so, would be rare.

\$\endgroup\$
2
  • \$\begingroup\$ I sort of feel that it could argue the opposite too - a large organisation could afford to pay a single magic user enough to stick around and cast it every day (since only a few of those organisations would have multiple magic users with the ability to cast it etc too). Saying that, I definitely agree (and for my own games allow the same thing with other spells to create a permanent effect with an entire year of casting the spell every day etc) :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – Rycochet
    Nov 16 at 14:46
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Rycochet Yes, but as I said, it's not as simple as just paying for a service. You need to find a caster who's both willing and trustworthy, and arrange a suitable payment, which for an arcane caster is likely to be something more complicated than just a large sum of money. My point is, if this were the state of things, most teleportation circles would exist in private locations, not prominent civic organizations. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 16 at 23:13

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .