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D&D 5E What exactly is an "object" for purposes of the Reduce spell?

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I usually take "an object" to mean something the party could conceivably carry otherwise. A 100' statue carved from a monolith is a no-go.
It's why I included the intro about objects being something a normal person could normally destroy given the right tool. If we apply that to "objects" for D&D purposes, we nix things like 100' tall stone statues, the 40 ton block of stone guarding the dwarven fortress, castle gates, and so on, from the equation.


If it is clearly an object, say yes.

If it isn't clear if it is an object, call for an appropriate attribute check.

If it is clear it isn't an object, say no.


Victoria Rules
It's why I included the intro about objects being something a normal person could normally destroy given the right tool.
Over how long?

I mean, give me an axe, a whetstone, and about a week and I could take down that big wooden gate in the photo. Does that count?


Dungeon Master of Middle-earth
It's pretty open ended what classifies as an object. Castle walls and colossal statues are given as examples. The fact that it's defined as a discrete item gives you some basis for dividing something like a gate into several discrete objects depending on how it's constructed. I'd start by finding a picture of a gate like the one I imagine and make that the basis for my description and any ruling about what parts it's comprised of.

This seems like a strange ruling in light of the fact that “a door” is literally one of the listed examples of objects.

A door, yes. . .in the sense of a normal door for a dungeon room or a house.

A gigantic fort gate, no.

Maybe the rule from 3.5e on the equivalent Shrink Item spell would be a guideline. In 3.x, the equivalent spell reduced an item that could be up to 2 square feet per caster level. You could shrink a door to a cabin with that. . .but probably not the gates of a fortress.

While people like how 5e is fast and loose with rules sometimes because it can mean faster play at times, the more codified, fixed rules of 3.x were written specifically to anticipate this kind of question.


Sure, but Jeremy Crawford was talking about a door.

This is one of his bad rulings, too. It seems to me that the correct ruling was upthread, in keeping with the spell's language regarding a thing being enlarged in a small container, things that physically interfere the size transformation, such as the door being attached to the wall, should simply stop it from working.

Generally speaking, Crawford's rulings seem to be useful when he's explaining the intent of some existing language, and often downright weird when he's ruling on a case he hadn't really thought of.

Sure, but Jeremy Crawford was talking about a door.

I wasn't talking about him, I was responding to the original poster's query.

Players are strategizing for this weekend (assault on a fort) and asked if the Reduce spell would affect a wooden gate in a fort. Reduce shrinks "1 object." There is no mention of any other limitations, such as size of the object.
In that context, the spell should work on a door, but not a huge gate.


It is unfortunate that the spell did not list some restrictions on the dimensions/size or the creature/object in the spell description. I would probably rule that it works as the Players intend for a regular door, but for the Gates of Minus Tirith, I might become more strict.

For those of you saying to give it something like x square feet per caster level, that is not the way 5e does it. 5e no longer grants spells different effects for the level of the caster, but rather greater effects for the level of the slot used to cast the spell. So the spell would probably have to have an "at higher levels..." section.

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