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 Post subject: Re: Undead in 1070 - have things changed since 1024?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:46 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:15 pm
Posts: 90
Location: Temple of the Pantheon, First City
Background question: If a bard trained by a BlackChanter were to want to keep an undead on an even-kilter and generally behaving as they did when they were mortal (or at least close to), then how often would that bard need to play for their undead companion? Once a night, three times a day, more often, less? I'm not asking about giving bardic inspiration or any mechanical benefit - just about keeping an undead a bit less disconnected and behaving more like a human than a monster. (And yes, the similarity to a drug-dealer/junkie relationship isn't lost on me - everything in Arcanis has a price after all.)

I'm asking because I'm working on better crafting a backstory, and I've become taken with the idea of the tragic, compelling story of being a creature whom - after going for decades without feeling anything - is suddenly reminded of how to feel and finds herself inspired to try to be the hero she once was, but also knows that ultimately she won't be able to hang on to it and is destined to again forget her ideals and become an unfeeling, uncaring monster. To me, that's a great deal more compelling than a creature that is just going through the motions of a former life until it finds some other distraction. Like one of you said above: most undead become evil or just don't care - and therefore they'd have little reason to become heroes - ergo PC undead are the exception and need to have something about them in their background that keeps them heroic. IE: their time as an unfeeling monster is behind and ahead of them, but in the now of the campaign something has happened to help them rise above their nature and become heroes.

A few things in case people feel compelled to talk mechanics in response to a background question:
1; I am well aware that most blackchanters are from Canceri, and that Canceri is not a legal PC nation
2; I am likewise aware that currently in 5e any bard can affect any creature with bardic inspiration - but that lore-wise a bard should either voluntarily not have their songs affect undead party-members or should have some sort of IC explanation for having BC training (such as having been tutored by a Cancerese expatriate in the Pirate Isles, or having been a former slave, or some other such explanation)
3; If I go this route with my background, either my character's interaction with a blackchanter will be back-story only, I'd take the Vassals alternative Noble Background feature to have a non-combatant blackchanter vassal (never participates in combat - ever - as per the PHB rules), or my wife would play a bard with BC-training (she's tentatively agreed, but we haven't asked the Stat-Monkey if its an allowed thing yet... we want to check the background before even thinking about character stats)
3; Again, just want to know the background of the above - not asking about mechanics since its silly to ask about the mechanics when we all know that there are no mechanics written yet other than the SRD.

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Ser Heidi val'Tensen, AKA Ser Adelheidis Sigrid val'Tensen of Moratavia


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 Post subject: Re: Undead in 1070 - have things changed since 1024?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 4:34 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:06 am
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Location: Portland OR
Interesting idea!

I have no idea how many "doses" it would take to keep an undead on an even keel (as you put it). And I doubt you will ever get a definitive answer. Milage probably varies by individual. For a rare example of undead maybe it wouldn't be needed at all. Sir Arhinius (sp?) of Ashvan seems to be doing fine 50 years later (so he's been undead longer than he was ever alive - still in the A:RPG mod Dry Rain he essentially seems to be doing fine).

But I suspect most undead probably would need reminders on a at least a semi-regular basis. If an undead wanted to hold on to the past then I would think (as a personal guestimation) that they would want that experience every day even if they could go longer without it. Maybe they would ask for this "treatment" at a regular time...upon waking up, or as everyone else goes to sleep (as a "meditation.") An undead indifferent to recalling the past, but somehow forced by circumstances to accept a Black Chanter, might need multiple reminders over the course of the day as they begin actions that could throw them off track.

Getting trained as a Black Chanter, as a matter of story, is not as hard it was in the old campaign. The A:RPG mod Long March, Dark Coda features a Black Chanter mostly from Coryan and his long trip to Ventaka. And the hi-jinks that then happen. It more requires a great dedication to the musical arts. Claiming a retainer who is a Black Chanter is an interesting RP hook.

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Eric Gorman

AKA Ambassador Tukufu, man of letters, tomb raider and Master Sword Sage
. . . and Sir Szymon val'Holryn, Order of the Phoenix
Formerly Sir Jaeger val'Holryn. Weilder of the Holy Avenger: Thonanos. Gave his soul to help free King Noen


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 Post subject: Re: Undead in 1070 - have things changed since 1024?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 4:52 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:15 pm
Posts: 90
Location: Temple of the Pantheon, First City
Yeah, like I said - it could easily spiral into an addiction and a drug-dealer / junkie type of relationship. My thoughts were that - since BC music is generally creepy to the living and it would be a secret that a PC was undead - they'd likely play for her while everyone else was sleeping and they were 'on-watch' as it were.

Also RE: Knight-Protector of Ashvan... Osric was a smart man and probably took pains to make sure his vassal didn't devolve - such as sending BCs to Ashvan. Also, there is a big difference between feeling an emotion and acting as if you feel an emotion because you know those around you expect/need to see you having emotion or you may be executed out of fear and ignorance.

People keep referencing Dry Rain, and I'd love to read it for more world-lore even if I can't play it (not 5e, and is/is being retired)... but it doesn't seem to be available anywhere.

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- Jacqualine Alicia C.

5e character:
Ser Heidi val'Tensen, AKA Ser Adelheidis Sigrid val'Tensen of Moratavia


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 Post subject: Re: Undead in 1070 - have things changed since 1024?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 7:09 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:15 pm
Posts: 90
Location: Temple of the Pantheon, First City
Sharing info from FB in case somebody else wants the info:

Although they are described as having symptoms that fit the textbook definition of clinical sociopathy, undead are meant to have more in common with TV Sociopaths (Like Dexter on Showtime) than RL sociopaths (which are completely and utterly different from Dexter, and are absolutely incapable of living by a code like he does since they would without hesitation abandon the code the first time it became less than convenient and would be incapable of caring whether something was right or wrong - in spite of understanding the concept and knowing the difference).

So TBC - as per the Stat Monkey on Facebook: for the purposes of RPing, having the memory of an emotion can make you behave as if you actually have that emotion - even though IRL that isn't how it works.

Just wanted to share that just in case anyone else got confused like I did.

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- Jacqualine Alicia C.

5e character:
Ser Heidi val'Tensen, AKA Ser Adelheidis Sigrid val'Tensen of Moratavia


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