5E Protecting Spellbooks

Savage Wombat

Adventurer
I'm placing a wizard's spellbook in my dungeon, and just noticed that there don't seem to be trap spells any more.

Explosive Runes, which has been moved under Glyph of Warding, specifically can't be placed on objects designed to be moved. Even Arcane Lock seems to make using it on a book questionable under RAW.

Does anyone have any citations from published materials about trapped objects - failing that, any suggestions about how to throw something together until the DMG comes out?
 

ccooke

Explorer
None of my players read this forum (And if any of them do, don't read the next bit. I'll be able to tell if you do!)

[SBLOCK]
These are from my notes for the next session, where the players will be looting a fortress they've just stormed. One thing they may discover is:

Hidden compartment in the desk, DC22 to find
spellbook
Trapped (DC25 to notice. Dispel Magic to suppress, or use command word ("Beauty")). Fireball if touched, burning the book
Detect Magic, Find Familiar, Mage Armour, Shield, Unseen Servant, Misty Step, Silence, Suggestion, Counterspell, Fireball, Fly, Phantom Steed, Greater Invisibility, Ice Storm, Cone of Cold, Contact Other Plane
(The spellbook exists because it should exist in the game; they just defeated a mage who had been living here for weeks. That doesn't mean it should be easy for them to get it. It will be quite obviously arcane, and if they touch it without taking precautions that's their own problem)

[/Sblock]
 
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Tormyr

Adventurer
I'm placing a wizard's spellbook in my dungeon, and just noticed that there don't seem to be trap spells any more.

Explosive Runes, which has been moved under Glyph of Warding, specifically can't be placed on objects designed to be moved. Even Arcane Lock seems to make using it on a book questionable under RAW.

Does anyone have any citations from published materials about trapped objects - failing that, any suggestions about how to throw something together until the DMG comes out?
Can you place the glyph under the book on the table?
 

practicalm

Explorer
It seems that by forcing the symbol and glyph of warding spells, it is rewarding characters that have a home base instead of the wandering life of adventurers. I agree there should be some spell to help keep wizards from being robbed of their spell books. I'd just let glyphs of warding to be cast on a spell book instead of trying to do something more complicated.
 

steeldragons

Steeliest of the dragons
I'd just let glyphs of warding to be cast on a spell book instead of trying to do something more complicated.
Bares repeating. When the obvious solution and the simple solution come together in a nice little package it seems...unnecessary to not use it.
 

77IM

Explorer!!!
You can cast arcane lock on a chest. Buy a small flat chest and carry around the spell book in the chest.
 

Sabathius42

Adventurer
A higher level mage would probably keep his book in a Leomund's Check (or whatever they call that spell in 5e). Only available if you speak the password, which they won't get if he/shes dead.
 

Gilladian

Adventurer
I see no reason a book could not have a lock upon it, very like a chest would have, if slightly daintier, that could not have Arcane Lock cast on it. It is an "entryway" equal to that of a chest lid. The problem is that a lock on a book is essentially useless. Just cut the cover away at the hinge, lift the cover off without ever undoing the lock, and you have the pages bare to your use. It ruins the book, but who cares? You can copy the spells easily.

Glyph of warding specifically says it can be cast "within an object that can be closed (such as a book, a scroll or a treasure chest) to conceal the glyph" although the object can't be moved more than 10', so you could cast it on a book in your library and you'd be okay. Personally, I'd put the book into a big leather bag, cast the glyph on it, then pick up the bag and carry it around. As long as the book and the bag stay within 10' of each other, you're good. Nitpicky, but it should work.
 
For the adventuring mage, there is also the option of traveling spell books. So much chatter about having all this gold and nothing to spend it on-how about backup spell books?

Don't go crying to mamma if you fall into a pit of acid with your only spell book in your pack and thousands of gold at home doing nothing. ;)
 

mcbobbo

Explorer
I would also fix it via house rule. Allow Wizards to cast it on their own books only, due to special training and lesser attunement to the book.
 

Lerysh

Visitor
To quote a well known meme, "Screw the rules, I have money". If you want wizard spell books to be dangerous in your games, go ahead and allow glyph of warding to work on them, reguardless of their mobile nature. If wizards start using that power to say hey look over here at the explodey book, then have it malfunction and destroy some spellbook pages or something.

The key is to make the rules and the game work the way YOU want them to, don't get bogged down in RAW. Make sure it works that way for PCs as well tho, if you have a wizard in the party, he can trap his spellbook as well.
 

Gadget

Adventurer
I agree with the many others: adapt the rule to suit your game. One caveat with the spell as written, they were probably trying to head off abuse of carrying around some object with a Glyph on it and tossing it in front of opponents. If DMs are judicious in application of the rules, I don't see a problem in adapting the rules to cover spell books.
 

Joe Liker

Visitor
A higher level mage would probably keep his book in a Leomund's Check (or whatever they call that spell in 5e). Only available if you speak the password, which they won't get if he/shes dead.
You've just traded one problem for another. Now the wizard has to worry about someone stealing the focus and holding it for ransom.
 

Rhenny

Adventurer
I have a feeling that DMG will give example traps. I would just make it up until then. If a door, lock or circle drawn on the ground can be magically trapped, I don't see any problem trapping a spell book.

Many years ago (over 30 now) I played a wizard/Druid in a 1e campaign. Eventually the DM let him cast contingency spells on his spell book. He made it so that anyone else who took hold of the book would be subject to a flesh to stone spell, and the book would then teleport back to my PC if he were still alive. This wizard's name was Lord Neechen.
 

EroGaki

Visitor
I'm planning on converting some of the classic protection spells to 5e; I noticed the lack of defensive spells immediately.
 

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