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There doesn't seem to be a weight limit on teleport anymore but, for the purposes of looting a dungeon, what is an object?

I can see how you can fill a chest and then teleport the chest and its contents. It is container and so all its contents are also teleported.

How about a 10' long table stacked with gear? Is the table also a container in the same way or would teleporting a table not teleport the tablecloth?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ The obvious problem with using teleport to loot a dungeon is that you need a separate casting for each object. Even if it was a container, you either need to send it on alone first, then hope no one takes your stuff before you get there, or spend 4 castings to teleport yourself and an ally, then yourself back, then the stuff, then yourself again. \$\endgroup\$ – GreySage May 31 '16 at 16:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ @GreySage A trivial solution to people stealing loot that arrives before you do it to teleport it into a locked room. Locked rooms are cheap. \$\endgroup\$ – GMJoe Jun 1 '16 at 0:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ I worried too much. It seems we can fit an entire dungeons loot in to a small chest and then teleport it with us using a single spell. Our DM is quite lax when it comes to rules but I like to keep my actions RAW. \$\endgroup\$ – Jason Stallard Jun 2 '16 at 12:57
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By RAW, an object is a single designated thing that isn't alive. In my opinion RAI extends to obvious containers.

The teleport spell states (emphasis mine):

This 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. 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.

This wording indicates it only applies to a single object since it does not say all objects. It also makes no exceptions for containers and their contents.

For example, if you could transport anything in a container all you would have to do is build a makeshift 10 X 10 X 10 wooden cage and call it a large box. Then you could teleport 1000 cubic feet of whatever you want because you targeted the container.

Personally, I would allow transporting obvious containers like chests, bags of holding, boxes, jars, etc because that seems in keeping with the intent of the game mechanics. It also avoids the unnecessary confusion and ceaseless arguing over just how many separate objects make up a single carriage.

I would say that common sense needs to prevail. If the contents of a table would fit in a standard chest, there's no real reason to prevent players from designating the table or shelf as a container for the purpose of transport. Especially if you're willing to let them just throw it in a Santa Claus bag and transport that anyways.

Now, if the players were trying to be deliberately game breaking with it, you can always have fun. Let's say they stack the treasure eight feet tall on a small bench and transport it. When they arrive, the mound of treasures topples, and riches are scattered everywhere. Small street urchins, poor folk, homeless beggars and Paul's girlfriend are all seen sprinting in to scoop up as much as possible. The player's are able to recover X % of the treasure before the rest disappears, and the guards come by and fine/imprison them for starting a riot.

That's just my opinion though. I don't mind people bending the rules a bit to do some ridiculous stuff, but I bend back a bit to show them I'll be just as ridiculous in response.

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    \$\begingroup\$ +1, but... Guards? Fines? Unlikely... they'd have to be paragons of virtue not to be part of the treasure-stealing mob. :) \$\endgroup\$ – T.J.L. May 31 '16 at 15:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ "If you target an object, ... it can’t be held or carried by an unwilling creature." Cue some player consternation when the bundle of treasure doesn't come through with the wizard because an unnoticed (eg: invisible) creature is hanging onto the container and isn't willing to be transported. They work their way back to the location, and find their precious bundle partly disassembled, and restocked on nearby shelves. :P \$\endgroup\$ – Theo Brinkman May 31 '16 at 16:24
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Make the table into a shipping container -- problem solved

Preface
The rules don't specify where the line is between "an object" and "not an object." Frankly, that's a good thing. This alleged imprecision gives both the DM and players room to work, to be creative, or to be imaginative. (Or, to not worry about it if that level of granularity / simulation / pedantry isn't where the players at the table gets their fun)

To solve your specific problem (a table loaded with loot)

How about a 10' long table stacked with gear? Is the table also a container in the same way or would teleporting a table not teleport the tablecloth?

From the spell description: (SRD, p. 183)

This spell instantly transports ... 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.

  1. Turn the table upside down, pile the stuff on the bottom of the table. The legs define the four corners of a container.

  2. Cover the pile of stuff/loot with the table cloth (and if needed, capes/blankets, etc).

  3. Using the 50' of rope that one of your party carries, and adding a shield on each long side of the table to stiffen and give shape to this pile, strap it all down. As necessary, use ten-foot poles1 to support the top of the two long sides further. Viola! You have one object: an improvised shipping container.

  4. Teleport it to your selected destination (to save on postage2).

A weight limit (if you want one)

The weight limit can be estimated in a variety of ways. The rules give room to work, and D&D 5e is "rulings over rules" in intent.

This spell instantly transports you and up to eight willing creatures of your choice that you can see within range

Conservative estimate:
Whatever you and eight people like you weigh and can carry, based on the 15 x STR carrying capacity. (SRD pp. 79-80. Same as Basic Rules).

Lifting and Carrying
Your Strength score determines the amount of weight you can bear. The following terms define what you can lift or carry. Carrying Capacity. Your carrying capacity is your Strength score multiplied by 15. This is the weight (in pounds) that you can carry, which is high enough that most characters don’t usually have to worry about it.
Push, Drag, or Lift.
You can push, drag, or lift a weight in pounds up to twice your carrying capacity (or 30 times your Strength score). While pushing or dragging weight in excess of your carrying capacity, your speed drops to 5 feet.

While the limit would vary depending on each creature's STR score, you can use an average for your ruling. If you use 11 STR as average, then 165 x 9 for 9 human sized creatures. Add the weight of 9 human sized creatures themselves. For ease of calculation we'll say each weighs 165 pounds (sans gear).
165 x 18 = 2970 pounds or just under a ton and a half.

Substitute in different values for average load on a creature and average weight, and you'll get a different max weight, but that's your ballpark figure if you want to define a weight limit. Since movement isn't an issue here, using the 30 x STR (encumbered) would make some sense, so the above would be 165 x 27 for 4455 pounds: about two and a quarter tons.

Liberal estimate that pushes RAW a bit
Whatever you and eight creatures that you can fit within a 10' radius circle weigh and can carry, per above. (8 horses? 8 oxen?) The limit there is how big a creature you think you can pack into that area, what it's STR score is, and thus what it can carry. Play around with creatures until you get a number you like.


1 Iconic dungeoneering gear. What do you mean you didn't bring a ten-foot pole? You're playing D&D, right?

2 Side effect: FedEx and UPS share prices on the Waterdeep Stock Exchange drop a bit in response to your brilliant problem solving. Agents form Aurora's Whole Realms Catalog contact you about trade rights infringement, through their solicitors.

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    \$\begingroup\$ It's probably worth mentioning that the Forgotten Realms has Aurora's Whole Realms Catalog, a delivery service that uses centralized warehouses and bulk teleportation to outlet stores. For an extra charge, they will teleport to you, but their contract explicitly states that they will not teleport people - they're a delivery service, not a transportation service. :) \$\endgroup\$ – T.J.L. May 31 '16 at 15:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @T.J.L. Included. \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast May 31 '16 at 16:44

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