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What happens if you polymorph something like an elephant into a frog, and then place a forcecage around said frog with the polymorph spell ending before the forcecage does?

Does the elephant just appear outside the forcecage or does the elephant turn into a compact cube of meat?

Forcecage, page 243 PHB

A prison in the shape of a box can be up to 10 feet on a side, creating a solid barrier that prevents any matter from passing throllgh it and blocking any spells cast into or out from the area.

When you cast the spell, any creature that is completely inside the cage's area is trapped. Creatures only partially within the area, or those too large to fit Inside the area, are pushed away from the center of the area until they are completely outside the area.

A creature inside the cage can't leave It by nonmagical means.

In this scenario, this is a Tiny sized force box around the frog, so this will end up resulting in a Huge sized elephant in a Tiny area (up to 10 feet on a side) that no matter can escape from.

The RAW vagueness comes from the second and third paragraph. Is the second sentence of the second paragraph an extension of the 1st sentence, as in it only applies upon the initial casting? Also, would the Polymorph spell ending be a "magical means" to leave the forcecage, applying to "those too large to fit Inside the area, are pushed away from the center of the area until they are completely outside the area."?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Related: Can forcecage fit creatures whose size category is larger than the cage? \$\endgroup\$ – user27327 May 11 '17 at 12:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Aaron You've used the Rules As Written tag, which we use for questions seeking a literal interpretation of the rules without turning to rulings or homebrew or house rules. Is that your intention for this question? (It's policy for us to check when it's unclear.) \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener May 11 '17 at 13:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @markovchain Hey, just FYI, policy is not for us to remove the RAW tag without first checking whether it's what they mean or not. (See also A low-intervention approach to RAW on meta.) \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener May 11 '17 at 13:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ I added source text so it wasn't open-ended as to what RAW I was referring to. \$\endgroup\$ – Aaron Koning May 11 '17 at 13:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ @VoromirKadien 1) We do actually still use the raw tag. 2) It is the content of a post, not that tags that is used to determine the quality of the post for any reason. 3) RAW questions are not off topic here. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose May 24 '18 at 18:31
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Rules as Written are Unclear

The Force Cage spell states (PHB, pp243)

When you cast the spell, any creature that is completely inside the cage's area is trapped.

And then separately:

Creatures only partially within the area, or those too large to fit inside the area, are pushed away from the center of the area until they are completely outside the area.

Given that these are are two separate sentences, the "too large to fit" clause may or may not be directly tied to the "when you cast the spell" clause. If it applies to both at time of casting as well as during the life of the spell then the creature is shunted (if it is two sizes larger than the cage - see squeezing rule.) If it only applies to the cage creation, then it raises the issue of a creature being in too small a space (see below.)

If those two sentences are supposed to be directly related, it changes the interpretation and then allows for use of Force Cage to autokill something. There are no real rules for this, and this question on polymorph may be related with regard to too small a space. See the Concerns section below for more information.

Squeezing into a smaller space

On the chance that the polymorphed creature is just one size smaller then the creature itself, the Squeezing rules would come into play (PHB, pp192)

A creature can squeeze through a space that is large enough for a creature one size smaller than it...It has disadvantage on attack rolls and Dexterity saving throws. Attack rolls against the creature have advantage while it's in the smaller space.

Concerns

There are two concerns that you should consider when determining use of this at your table:

  1. If you choose to read the Forcecage text as not applicable post-casting, then you have created a neat effect to instantly kill a creature. This could become very powerful if you have a group that is able to do this. However, this is also using a 7th level spell slot (along with a 3rd) - and may not be as unbalanced as it seems. This is similar, but not identical, to the idea of polymorphing into a tiny creature to be eaten or go into a larger creature and then end the polymorph so you "burst out" and kill the creature. There are no RAW rules around this and allowing tactics like this potentially creates a slippery slope (although not as great when you consider the 7th level spell cost for Force Cage.)

  2. If you choose to go with the interpretation of being shunted out, you are risking devaluing the Forcecage. The odds of this happening are small as it is unlikely to be used against the party by an enemy.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Jan 13 '18 at 14:31

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