So you're dead, what next?

If your character has died, you’re probably a bit bummed out and lacking keen. What are the best ways to handle character death and also start getting enthused for a new character?

If you die half way through an event, one of the best ways I found to get back on the horse and not sit round feeling a bit sad was to go and offer to crew for the rest of the event. Depending on if they’ve got space for you this can be a great way to get on with stuff, play a bunch of different roles and keep yourself occupied.

It’s also a good way to get the creative juices flowing by doing something completely different and give you some ideas for new characters I found.

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Depending on when you died during an event, crewing is definitely a good option.

When I lost my previous 3-year-old character I made the mistake of coming right back into play after only a few hours. This had the effect that the other members of my group had a harder time mourning my previous character as I was right there with them. I think had I taken a longer time out and gone and monstered it would have helped them roleplay my absence a bit better, and also would have given me time to process. Live and learn I guess.

I like the idea of going to a different nation and playing an ‘interim’ character for an event or two after loosing a long-term character. This way you get to experience a new nation, and also get some time to develop a new long-term character. And who knows, maybe the interim character will become long term!

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Disjointed ramblings follow:

Step 0: If you haven’t died yet, get a new character [EDIT: or two!] prepared, even roughly. You don’t have to play them as soon as you die, but I find knowing where I’m going next really helpful when the death happens. Takes some of the stress out of it, especially if I’m changing OC group.

Give yourself some space to grieve. Character death may not be ‘proper’ grief, but it is a form of loss, especially if it was a long term character who had friends and aspirations. It’s okay to be sad about the stuff you planned that will never come into play, and sadness about relationships that you’ll never be able to continue. This affects me quite a lot, so I know that it will happen and I don’t beat myself up for it.
That doesn’t have to be straight away - after Renata’s death I was playing Malachi in under an hour - but happened later, after the event, when I deliberately gave myself time to open up that emotion box.

I love designing new characters! Often I will have one thing that I want to do - play an archer (Malachi), or have a specific character trait (Renata), or read one line in a religion brief that sparks something (Leah)- and then build a character around that. How have they got there? What made them pick that path? Are they happy with it? Why are they choosing now to come to Anvil? I find all of that investigative stuff hugely keen-making as I watch the character turn from one spark of an idea into a whole person.

I find writing IC letters very helpful in nailing down my character’s personality. What they find important to write about and they way they speak on the page tells me a lot about them. Leah swears in her letters! :open_mouth: It took me by surprise. I’ve carved out a couple of IC relationships that matter to her and means I have something to look forward to at E3 when she hits the field for the first time. (This isn’t available to everyone as you may or may not know who you are playing with next, but in my case I have and have found this part of the process helpful).

I also find picking a handwriting/font style bonkers useful to me. Malachi’s whole personality stemmed from how she wrote, it was the cornerstone of how I saw her. Leah’s came much later and is more of an expression of who I’ve already decided she is, but helps me get a tactile, literal feeeeeeel for the character.

Music. I’m a musical person, so sifting through the nation brief and finding one or two songs that really appeal to a character helps me cement their Pride in their nation.

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I haven’t died yet (jinx!!!) but I did go missing after a battle in riekos and was unable to get to the sentinel gate. We were able to live and survive by walking back, but that meant I was effectively MIA for the event and I couldn’t tell my group in any way. So Joined in with the skirmish crew for the Saturday and Sunday. (This was when the 4 day events were still about) It was great fun and gave me a much more relaxed event until I wanted to go to the IC field and actually drink the beer In had brought. So I change in to a browed shirt and changed the hat, keept my monster trousers on and played a trader from the marchers (Just ran with a 0-point throw away character).
I walk to the camp to see a full blown wake in progrees. I had left my hat in the camp and they had popped it on a halberd with a mask and was using it as guiser. I caught the eye of my friend nodded and left so I didn’t interrupt them.
He caught me up and asked “The Question” and I said “I don’t know, I need to talk to god in the morning”. I kept them guessing I was dead right until the next event. I asked him to grab a couple of things and I had a blast finding reasons to poke my nose into other parts of the game and just generally be a pain trying to sell a load of grain.
I guess the take away from this is, have a break from your last character. Try and have a good day between characters to let the old one pass on and make space for new characterisations. If I died on the Saturday battle then I would probably leave it till the next event just to give me a chance to figure out some new costume.

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I have ideas about things I’d be interested in playing in most of the nations - sometimes it’s a whole concept, sometimes it’s an interesting archetype, sometimes just a vague costume idea or a friend I’d like to play alongside.

So when I die I give myself distance from my previous character. If it’s mid-event I might go volunteer crew for a while. But the next actual character I play I make sure is different to my previous one: in a different nation, with different people, with different personality traits, interested in a different part of the game & with different skills. I get a whole new set of memories and experiences, and my new character remains nice and distinct from my previous ones.

I find making the kit for the new character, statting them up, and writing their background, are all great ways to build keen for the new concept and get over the loss of the old one.

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I’d just like to point out that the “go and crew for the rest of the event” thing is a very different prospect for someone with 10+ years of history with PD (as most of the posters in this thread are) than it is for someone who’s new to all this - both for fact that some jobs can only be done by someone who is known & trusted, and confidence and knowing who to ask

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Good point, let me check what the score is on that. But in the meantime, how else do people “pack up their old characters” before getting on with the next one?

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Just a heads up: due to the way the skirmishes are organised/balanced for numbers, players with dead characters will probably only have the chance to monster a couple of the larger skirmishes (and the battles of course).

It’s worth dropping by to check, but there’s a good chance the reply will be “we don’t need volunteer monsters right now, but come back at X o’clock and we’ll kit you up”.

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My most recent death had the embarassing complication of: “I was going to be looking after the small child, IC and OOC, all afternoon…”

I had to play an interim (very different) character in my old group, now down to less than a handful, so I could babysit…

While it’s possible, certainly in a big enough group, to generate a new character and bounce straight back in, thresher has a point that it could break the RP for others. A few hours to grieve is good, a stint of monstering is good…

…I’m in favour of not starting the new character that event. Unless, you know, you died early and had a concept you were hoping to try out… :slight_smile:

As an aside from this, the hardest part I’m finding of recent character death is not so much [Alas all my plans!], or even [I was enjoying that character so much!!], but [My next character is a stranger not just to all my friends but to all my history…]. I cannot make references to things from a couple of years ago, I cannot (easily) tell the stories I told, and I really like telling stories.

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I personally find the best way to counter character death sadness is to have something to throw yourself at enthusiastically as quickly as possible. Dying on a Sunday battle I will probably just dive for the showers then search around for likely victims who are also dead to plan for next characters and so on but for dying on a saturday battle/skirmish I tend to come prepared with a ‘half event plan’. A half event plan is usually a character concept that is sufficiently whacky that I wouldn’t play the long term but comes with a list of things to do and will hopefully be entertaining enough that they’ll keep my mind from sadness till the end of the event when I can link up with other people and plan for a longer term new character concept hopefully with a group.

Half event concepts I’ve had or discussed at various points have been things like
*Individual who is massively in debt to the Vyig and needs to get a sum of money (say 8 thrones) by the end of the event else they’re going to be kneecapped/made an example of. Run around doing any task anyone will pay them to do trying to collect the money. Become more desperate as time runs out.
*Gardener who is plants obsessed to the point of finding humans indistinguishable. Would really like to turn dead people into compost because human compost does wonders for the roses… Sees how many dead bodies they can collect for turns the circle purposes. `

Or if you’ve got friends somewhere with a large group that you could blend into see if they’ll let you tag along for half an event. It might even stick.

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Speaking from the POV of PD’s Battle Team we are now asking that dead players do not volunteer to help monster during the event.

Where we want/need volunteer monsters, we will advertise the time/location via the Winds of Fortune before the event.

We have taken this decision due to the time it actually takes us to get any one volunteer ready for any particular skirmish we are running. It is a massive shame obviously, but when we had crew stepping out of a skirmish to explain the process of monstering, briefing, kitting, making-up and finding weapons for a player volunteer, before then explaining any one scenario we are running out, it just takes up too much valuable time.

We also have to consider how we have planned out skirmishes at events, and what our players know about the difficulty/intent of each scenario. Adding extra monsters in is not always easy or even possible. If we have 5 people volunteer and join our 25 strong crew that were about to face 20 players, we are now 10 orcs up on the players and we have limited ability/time to inform them of this.

This all said, if you are ever interested in joining the Skirmish Team, please get in contact with PD - crew@profounddecisions.co.uk

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That’s a bit of a shame, but I guess a side effect of the growing size of the game.

Yes it is a massive shame.

It was E1 this year where we realised how much time we actually needed to spend getting someone ready to join in a skirmish. It is a testament to how awesome our Skirmish Team is as a group of professional LRP monsters how much they know the roles and troop types they play.

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I wonder if its now worth while having a FAQ on the wiki ex-plaining 0-point/temporary characters?

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I’m not sure there’s really such a thing as a temporary 0-point character. If you’re on the field, you should have a character on the system, even if you’ve spent no points on that character.

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Creating a temporary character is easy enough though. Being an apprentice with absolutely no skills is a blast for half an event because you can go anywhere and do anything as long as you can find someone to teach you.

Thank you for the clarification, it explains why my experience didn’t tally with the standard advice of “just crew for the rest of the event”. I died early in the battle of the Saturday at the most recent event, and went striaght to GOD after leaving the field to ask for monster/crew opportunities. I was told I’d be welcome to come back in five hours for the late-afternoon skirmishes (already advertised as looking for volunteer monsters), but there wasn’t anything available sooner.

To answer the original question, I’d had some backup ideas that I thought might not quite work but would be worth an experiment for half an event. Not really a temporary character, more taking a bigger-than-usual risk in the type of character I was going to play. If I liked it, I could continue at the next event. If I didn’t, I could do something else and had only “lost” half an event. There was a national culture I wasn’t sure if I’d enjoy being a part of so I created a character in that nation.

I had hoped that I could play with soloing some rituals in a Realm I’d not tried before. What I’d forgotten to take into account was that GOD would be very busy directly after the battle and there would be a five-hour wait for character packs. So I had no mana to experiment with that afternoon either! It might be worth bearing that in mind if your backup character is very resource-intensive and relies on their pack contents to power their game - artisans and ritualists probably feel this most acutely, whereas a Synod priest may be able to do without their Liao allocation for longer.

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  1. You can’t monster or be an NPC, don’t even ask
  2. If you make up a new character don’t expect a character pack
  3. It is best to find a role away from your group

So assuming I have no childcare responsibilities, I’m stuck half a mile from a homecamp I can’t visit wearing a tonne of chain, plate and leather. I’m hot, I’m thirsty and I’m likely to be sad.

This is a challenge.

I like the sound of trying an unusual character concept for the rest of the weekend, or trying a different nation. But the logistics are awkward.

What actually happens when you die through the gate? People occasionally physrep their bodies but most seem to be escorted OC to monster.

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  1. You can Monster, but only in designated skirmish slots (Usually late afternoon Saturday)
  2. You will get a new character pack as soon as GOD can sort you out, but if you’re one of 80 who carped it on the Saturday battle, and GOD is short of staff you may need to be patient. (Go have lunch and come back in a bit)
  3. It is easiest to do something away from your group to avoid confusing both their and your roleplay. You can do anything that isn’t going to OOC spoil someone else’s game.

If you die on the battlefield and can be dragged throguh the gate by another player then you can roleplay terminal for the rest of the event.
If you die separated from everyone then you’re probably goign to have go back via Monster and not the IC field.

If your gear is all IC, I would suggest giving yourself half an hour or more to have a sit down and a drink, then strip off any really identifying kit, and go back to your IC camp in your base layers if you can, and try not to use the front entrance of your group tent if you don’t need to. The rest of your group are probably still mourning your death at this point, so better to let them initiate contact if you can.

Then throw on some other kit, your monstering stuff if necessary, and you can walk round Anvil as wished, get some food, go create a new character, and work out what you want to do next.

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