GM Question: Player death because of mistake


Rules Questions


Hi,

I'm running a campaign and last time we thought one of the pc's died. He didn't have much health anymore en when he got a full on hit, he died instantly. It was late so we stopped shortly after that.

A short time later, out of game, the pc realizes he forgot to include his extra hp, they just went up a level and when he rolled for his new hp he didn't write it down. If he had included it he wouldn't have died, he would have had enough.

So what would you guys do in this situation? Just say it's your mistake and you're still dead? Or give him his extra hp and let him live because he really does own that hp?

Edit: Thanks for the advice! I guess I'll let it slide this time and let him live, story wise it's no problem.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

You should remember that the the character are still alive but unconscious until they get negative hit point equal to their constitution score. So, unless the PC has a very low constitution score 1 level of hp will not move him from dead to upright and active, it will probably move him from dead to unconscious and dying, probably with 4-5 negative hit points.

So he would not have made a difference in the fight but he can be cured after the fight has ended.

The best solution is to say that he was unconscious and to have his friends heal him after the fight. As you have ended the game shortly after that there will be very little retcon.


I'd let him live but remind him to keep better track of things next time; if it is a chronic problem then maybe not. The big thing for me in regards to why you should say yes is the timing of the "death," the end of the session. If it had been at the beginning of the session and you reversing it would essentially make the last several hours of playing null and void I'd say no, but that isn't the case here. There are no plot holes made from changing "X died" to "it looked like X was gonna die there but he barely made it" in this circumstance.


Ultimately your call, as the DM.
It essentially depends if many things have happened that were influenced by his death and would need to be re-played if this event is changed retroactively.
If too many happened, too bad. Don't replay, it's nearly always a mess.
Otherwise, i would make the player happy rather than frustrated.


I would let the other chars make a heal skill check to spot that he's still alive.

At the same time I would warn my players that this is a 1 time boon... Next time a player forgets to write down hp, the char doesn't have them (1 time is an honest mistake... Recurring errors is not taking the game seriously...)


Yeah, if the character really had those hit points, they just weren't written down and it doesn't affect the game, let him live. OTOH, if you suspect they are the kind of player that would say "Oh, I meant to apply that favored class point to this skill that I just happen to need", kill them.


Bacon666 wrote:

I would let the other chars make a heal skill check to spot that he's still alive.

At the same time I would warn my players that this is a 1 time boon... Next time a player forgets to write down hp, the char doesn't have them (1 time is an honest mistake... Recurring errors is not taking the game seriously...)

This

And for me that is assuming I had no reason to believe it was not an honest mistake.

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