Dying to Play

One of the more appealing parts of Dungeons & Dragons is the ability to immerse oneself in world where death isn’t nearly as permanent as it is in the real world. The mere existence of spells like “resurrection”, “raise dead”, and “reincarnation” makes dangers encountered seem a lot less threatening. There are even spells to fix deformities, cure diseases, and restore sight and hearing. It is easy to not take the trials and tribulations of the game seriously when such fixes exist.

Of course this hinges on everything going according to plan. There has to be a fairly powerful priest or cleric on hand to cast these spells. The victim that needs to be revived has to have a pretty high constitution score to survive the attempt. And of course there is a healthy element of chance involved to add that extra dash of randomness to the entire affair. So what happens when an ice devil manages to kill a druid and there isn’t anyone in the group that can’t raise dead? The long answer is pretty complicated. The short answer is the group is screwed.

With any luck at all there is a cleric available that can attempt to restore life to the fallen tree hugger. The stricken druid now has to roll a resurrection survival roll. If that fails the odds of ever getting the druid back on their feet diminishes rapidly. In fact this is where most Game Masters rule the character well and truly deceased. Time now for the player to roll up another character. But this isn’t any normal game and I am certainly not your run-of-the-mill Game Master. There is a way to bring back the dead from even this incredibly difficult situation. But it won’t be easy.

The players are going to have to make some tough choices now. If they want the druid back, more or less as she was before, they are going to have to seek the aid of some much more powerful individuals. They might even have to get the help of somebody unsavory. Somebody who might know a bit more about dead people. Maybe somebody that has had quite a lot of experience capturing souls. Someone that knows their way around a graveyard, you might say. No matter how you slice it the bringing back of a cherished companion should rightfully entail a quest and a moral reckoning. Are they worth it? Only time will tell. In the meantime let us savor the possibilities of how many hoops they will have to jump through and just how many of those will be on fire.