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So a PC Died.


Advice

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

I am GMing a campaign for a party of 6 players. Last night they were fighting this CR9 BBEG on the top of a tower's roof, now, the monk attempted to close in with acrobatics, her check was not enough to overcome the BBEG CMD and so she opened an AOO. Long story short, BBEG scored a critical hit on the monk, and the monk died.

I have seen many deaths before. Most of the time I use this opportunity as a character hook for most of the party and have a whole quest thing prepared for next session in order for them to "pay" that Raise Dead.

The session ended as they ran towards the temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar, one of the clerics in the party is a Cleric of Sarenrae, they arrived there with her body on their hands, asking to revive her.

I took a look at the spellcasting services table, it says that any spell with a component worth more than 3000gp might not be available though, the party says that Magnimar is such a big city that surely there are strong enough clerics as well as clerics with this gem in town. What do you think?, should I simply have them pay 5450gp and get the Raise Dead, or use my method of a simple double quest with a smaller cost? (one fpr the living party, and a small experience for the dead monk in the other world - I'm even planning on this experience to have a few effects on her character in general).

How would you make it believable for there to be or not to be a Cleric with the pearl and the level to cast Raise Dead around?


I almost never fudge dice. It is a rare, rare, rare thing for me to do that. And I run a fairly lethal campaign. I've had one TPK this year.

But one time I would consider fudging a roll is on an AOO crit that would kill a PC attempting to make an attack on the BBEG. The hit would have succeeded for sure, but I might well have "forgot" to confirm the crit...


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I would say its available. The cleric may not have enough diamond dust on her person to cast the spell, but the spell is on every 9th level clerics spell list. So if they can buy diamond dust(and they can in a big city), then they can get the spell.

Liberty's Edge

According to the Pathfinder Wiki, Magnimar is a "Large City", which means a base value of 8,000gp. This means that there is a 75% chance that the components are in some dude's shop with a "for sale" sign on them, as long as they can find the right shopkeeper. Each week, a new check is made to determine if it is available that week (so if it isn't around on week 1, it might be on week 2).

On the other hand, the cleric would need to be level 9 to cast raise dead, which is usually a very high-ranking official in the church (if not the head priest for the city). This means the players would need to get on that person's busy schedule *and* convince them the subject is worth-while. This might not be hard for a cleric of Sarenrae, though, since they're all about redemption and second-chances and what-not.

In summary: Chances are fair that they would be able to get the monk resurrected. If you don't want to make a thing of it, just let them buy it. If you do want to, make them do some RP with convincing the cleric to cast the spell.


So embarking on a grand quest to restore life to a valued colleague seems like a great plan on its face. But how does that work?

If that PC is dead, what do you do with that PC's player? Does she just sit out while the rest of the party is on the quest? Does she get a temporary PC that conveniently hangs out with the party until the main PC is restored? Does she show up to sessions and just eat snacks and heckle the rest of the group for being so slow?


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Do what you want.

Roll the percentiles. Not available? Wait a week.

I say roleplay it.

Joes House-O-Stuff is out at the moment but can send a runner to the capital city of Hugeistan and get what you need! Should be a two week turnaround at a premium price. OH NO the runner got eaten by a dragon. Go dig your dust out of the dragons stomach.

PC's walk into Joes and see another adventuring party buying all the dust. Tickle fight for it? Beg and plead? Back room favors?

Clerics have plenty on hand, but are also dealing with an evil temple in the mountains. Perhaps the PC's could help in exchange?

Just rolling percentiles for stuff is so.....boring.

Liberty's Edge

MacGurcules wrote:

So embarking on a grand quest to restore life to a valued colleague seems like a great plan on its face. But how does that work?

If that PC is dead, what do you do with that PC's player? Does she just sit out while the rest of the party is on the quest? Does she get a temporary PC that conveniently hangs out with the party until the main PC is restored? Does she show up to sessions and just eat snacks and heckle the rest of the group for being so slow?

The OP did mention that he was planning a small quest for the dead character in the other world, one that would have an effect on her character.


Gio wrote:


I took a look at the spellcasting services table, it says that any spell with a component worth more than 3000gp might not be available though, the party says that Magnimar is such a big city that surely there are strong enough clerics as well as clerics with this gem in town. What do you think?

I think it's reasonable that if a city is going to have certain spell components available it will be those for a raise dead spell.

Now the willingness for them to convert this into cash? That would depend upon the NPCs in question. For some it would be hard for them not to do so, others would want more of a profit, and others still would refuse.

Have it fit your world and the NPCs in question rather than looking to serve your own needs/wants.. the more you do this the more your entire world will come to life,

James


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Just for what its worth from a long time GM...

Have the "raise dead" spell available. Have the party agree to perform a service after the raise dead is performed so that the "dead" member can participate in the quest to restore his/her own life.

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

@Adamantine Dragon:
I don't like to fudge dice either, but since this campaign started I've been forced to do so a few times, specially for critical hits, or some dangerous spells here and there (considering mos of the players are newbies and I did not want to make them have too much of a hard time). Thing is, i didn't knew how much hp she had (the cleric healed everyone else up to maximum but no her), and thought a dangerous critical would be a great opener for this BBEG. When I heard she was brought down to enough negative hit points to die horribly, I regretted not fudging it, but It was too late. To my delight, the Player took it really well, she even started thinking about how her personality would change if she is ever brought back to life.

@Johnlocke90 & StabbityDoom:
Thanks for the information, I'll take into consideration, I suppose i could present them with both an option to pay the diamond dust, or a cheaper option -via- questing.

@MacGurcules
I am thinking of running this quest on two parallel worlds. On one side, the party party in the material plane performing the save quest on the material plane, on the other, the dead PC role-playing in the other world, probably having some mental challenges, opportunities for character development, or something of the sort.

I don't have the whole thing ready, but I'll probably send them to the swamps south of Magnimar, have the quest be small enough to take just a couple of hours, and maybe have her play the one Npc that was already accompanying the party, as both the gnome and monk have gotten attached to the small Gnome. My main problem is, I will probably need to leak a few hints for the next adventure, so this is not so random, and I still need to think about that.

@Adamantine Dragon (Part2):
That's Brilliant! Thanks! I might even tie it to the next adventure instantly and everything. Thanks a lot!


Have the players pay the GP's and have their monk back... however the cleric might want the group to help him after the revival... especially if the group leans towards lawfull... Saranrae have CG clerics too, and may have a cleric that wanna "earn" a little extra... to feed the poor ofcause...

in other words... you dn't haveto pick between "just" paying, and adventuring... players in debt to NPC's can be easy to sell on new adventures...

Silver Crusade

'You want me to raise your friend! A noble thing, to be sure, but life isn't so simple for a high priestess like me! For instance, right now the worry that is taking all my time and attention is that dastardly devil who's taken over that monastery....if only there were some people of good heart that were willing and able to solve that problem....!'


Gio wrote:
How would you make it believable for there to be or not to be a Cleric with the pearl and the level to cast Raise Dead around?

While the High Cleric in charge of the Temple is currently away on business, he has left the Temple in charge of a ambitious cleric. He has had dreams and visions as he has been praying about a [fill in for what is useful for the campaign], and has had a message that "the solution to the problem will visit him".

Enter the players. The ambitious cleric feels sympathy for their situation and has the solution. He has been given a spell by his God by which he can, for a time, raise the PC. As payment all he wishes is for them to go and sort out this problem of his...

That takes care of the issue with the diamond, it allows the dead PC to tag along, and if you develop the concept much more than I am doing now it can work as a future adventure hook as well.

Limitations:
- The spell may have either a certain time before the player dies again.
- If the PC dies again, he/she can no longer be raised at all.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Check out the Salve of the Second Chance.


In our games we hand out Cool Factor points which are given out if you do something cool ingame or do or say something so funny everyone laughs out of game. These points are used to force the DM or another player to reroll a check, and yes the DM can get them to and use them against player's. We use them for other things also, but mainly as forced rerolls when bad things happen to player's or when good things happen for the DM.


I know why bringing back the dead is so expensive but it leads to the problem that it can really hurt a party's economics to have someone raised.
So I'd have the PCs do a sidequest for the temple instead of having to pay. It is cooler than just handing over money to cheat pharasma of what's her due and it keeps the party finances intact.

Perhaps the guys at the Sarenrae temple could shake their heads when suddenly someone comes and tells them that the temple of XXX (instert god here) is looking for a party of adventurers to do some secret and important job.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The linked item above costs 1,600gp, and requires no skill to use.


I missed that. Have to tell the crafter in our Kingmaker game to make a dose oth this, or two.

Silver Crusade

johnlocke90 wrote:
I would say its available. The cleric may not have enough diamond dust on her person to cast the spell, but the spell is on every 9th level clerics spell list. So if they can buy diamond dust(and they can in a big city), then they can get the spell.

Just because a spell is on someones spell list doesn't mean it's readily available. They don't have the spells listed as rare or uncommon but the component cost should clue you in though.

Silver Crusade

To the op: When it comes to what's in a city with regards to the CRB are not rules, they are just guidelines to help DM's that don't want to have to bother creating their own.

You can have whatever you want available in any given city.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
The linked item above costs 1,600gp, and requires no skill to use.

And it provides reincarnation, not Raise Dead :) There is a difference between those two spells.

As for the topic at hand, I don't like the option of having someone readily resurrect someone. I like that bringing someone back from the dead is difficult and requires effort so the players are more concerned with dying rather than just irritated at having to pay up 5.000+ gold. So I would either have the spell require special ingredients that they need to collect (have the dead player act as the cleric traveling with maybe or some other clerk) or maybe it requires a ritual of some kind involving different things.

And the dead player might need to do some stuff as well on the 'other side' before it can work.


If you study expensive spell components, you notice that a couple of them are really common; low-level cleric spells work on silver, divination spells on incense, and all restoration/raising spells work on diamonds. There's more regular demand for diamonds than for other expensive components, so getting a diamond in a town where it's inside the wealth limit shouldn't be too hard.

If you want to do a quest, I'd go with AD's idea: do it AFTER the raising. That way all players can participate instead of what's essentially a Split Party (with one member in the spirit world and the rest terrestrial; it's still a lot of waiting for players in the other world to get on with it).


1 person marked this as a favorite.

You have two problems with your quest idea, that need to be solved by your approach. The first problem is it's boring for the dead PC who can't do anything during the game session, the second problem is explaining why there's no easy access to Raise Dead until the quest is complete.

Here's your solution:

1) Tell the player to knock two levels off of her character during the week, and add the Ghost Template to it. Have her "haunt" the party until they get her raised. Give her action-limitations on what she can do as a ghost, and make it clear that the ghost thing is temporary, and will only last 7 days or whatever. Invent a storyline reason for her rising if necessary. Make it clear the ghost condition goes away when she's raised.

1b) If necessary, have the PCs encounter some gypsies who give them prophetic hints about why the PC is ghosty and how the only way to exorcise the ghost will be to raise her, so your PC paladin/cleric doesn't get all froggy attacking the ghostmonk.

2) Have the party approach the lcoal temple, talk with some folks, and discover that the high priest capable of casting Raise Dead was abducted by badguys and needs to be rescued. Ding, instaquest. Then have part of their reward be a free Raise Dead at the end.

3) Give the player an option to reclass into the Hungry Ghost Archetype when she's raised. ;)

That's creative GMing that your players won't argue against, and it's still fun for everyone involved.


Like the ghost and hungry ghost idea. Though you'll have to make sure to make the player want to be raised again. A ghost monk with free reign over his abilities will probably be so effective that he won't want to be raised again. So either clearly make it a temporary effect (he's slowly fading into the afterlife) and/or emphasize the disandvantages of being undead/incorporeal.


Thanael wrote:
Like the ghost and hungry ghost idea. Though you'll have to make sure to make the player want to be raised again. A ghost monk with free reign over his abilities will probably be so effective that he won't want to be raised again. So either clearly make it a temporary effect (he's slowly fading into the afterlife) and/or emphasize the disandvantages of being undead/incorporeal.

Interesting point. A sorcerer who became a ghost would be significantly stronger than when they were living. I wouldn't want my sorcerer to come back to life.


You could make it a ghost without the Rejuvenation - any damage you take is HP lost forever, or at least until you get your body back; you're running around dressed only in your soul, that's rather risky.

The Dresden Files worked with this concept in Ghost Story, which turned out to be a really nice book.


What you should do really depends on the players. If they just want to get on with the story line and they have the funds, then the should be able to pay for the Res with little difficulty.

If you think they'd enjoy a side-quest though then that is almost always going to be more fun. Prepare a NPC for the monk's player to use during your regular session and then plan a 1 on 1 session with them later (if you want to do the whole spirit realm thing).

Alternatively, that ghost template idea is actually really cool.

Lantern Lodge

shallowsoul wrote:

To the op: When it comes to what's in a city with regards to the CRB are not rules, they are just guidelines to help DM's that don't want to have to bother creating their own.

You can have whatever you want available in any given city.

/agree

Rules are just guidelines (unless you are playing PFS). The whole point of the game is to have fun. Losing your character and it taking more one than one session to get him back is not fun - especially when the monk was not doing anything out of the ordinary for a monk.

I don't even like the "quest for a res" thing unless you can find something interesting for that player to do. Now, a cleric could perform the resurrection and then ask for a favor (so the character could participate in paying for his/her own res). If the party breaks their promise, there might be some irremovable curse placed upon them.

I also agree that I wouldn't have outright killed the monk, but rather brought him to -Con+1 hit points and given the party a chance to save him in this situation.

This is where having the party find a scroll/wand(1 charge)/diamond for a resurrection in random treasure is also not a bad idea.

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