They say that every story has a beginning and an end. But that isn't always the case. Some stories simply...
— Zoe Castillo
Death is sad, difficult and inevitable. But unlike others, when player characters die their story might not be over. What happens depends on their Type
Unlike in other games, players should not take a new character if and when theirs dies. It would compromise the story. Instead, the GM and player may choose (together) to use the following options so that the player still has some say within the game world.
s are the simplest. When prophets die, they're dead. For good. However, prophets have significant influence and this may enable their legacy to impact the world going forwards. The player of a prophet which has died may choose (if the GM agrees), to play their legacy instead.
Playing a Legacy
Playing a legacy is very different to playing a real character. The influence comes in far more subtle ways, and this may come as a bit of a jump for the player initially. A legacy player cannot directly control any of the characters involved, but rather can put ideas into heads and add in things that their original character did before they died. Perhaps a company founder instilled a code of values into their people before dying, a monarch created an important document for their children, or a priest realises that their religion has strayed from the rules that their founder set into place all those years ago.
Legacies make rolls to follow the intentions of their creator, the same as a character would. However, there are a few key differences:
- Legacies only have the Social pool. They can expend effort at the same cost as the prophet before them, but cannot restore any points to their pool except through specific, GM-made events. These will usually be something that reminds followers of the legacy what the founder initially intended.
- Legacies retain the Edge, Effort and Skills of their founder. They lose most special abilities and cyphers, but the handful that remain are marked with "persists".
- When a legacy runs out of Social points, the player no longer has any control of it. They effectively have no role left to play in the game. Although the legacy may continue, it has outgrown the prophet that founded it and may hold none of their values.
- Legacies gain a new stat: Distance. This represents the difference between the founder's principles and goals, and those of the legacy. Each point of Distance adds one step of difficulty to all rolls made by the Legacy, and Distance usually increases by one at the end of an act or era.
A real world example of this is Walt Disney. Long after his death, his legacy has continued to influence and change the world. Where things haven't quite gone according to his plans, chances are this was because of failed rolls on the part of the player and the increasing difficulty that legacy players face as the game goes on.
Unlike Prophets, Dreamer
s don't really die until the dream has ended. When their physical bodies expire, they return to the Storytime
. There, they may influence others through the dreams that link Stark and Arcadia, or they may wait for an opportunity to return to their original world.
Note: Although in the fiction an Expired may eventually be able to take on a new body, there is no mechanical way for them to do so.
Playing an Expired
Expireds are far closer to regular characters than Legacies. The Expired still has an internal representation of themselves, usually choosing to retain the image of their previous body. Although they can't leave the storytime, they have a ton of power within the realm. The differences between playing an Expired and a Dreamer are much smaller:
- An Expired only has a Dreaming pool. They can expend effort in the same way as when they were alive, but they regain points to their pool at a fixed rate - this depends on the GM but is usually 1/hour. They can no longer take any physical form in the other worlds, but can affect things that are mirrored in the Storytime through someone's dreams if the connection is sufficiently strong (which is rare, but happens on occasion).
- All Expired retain the Edge, Effort and Skills of their original body. They lose most special abilities and cyphers, but the handful that remain are marked with "persists".
- If an Expired ever runs out of Dreaming points, their mind is unable to keep a hold on their existence. They wake up, effectively ending the player's ability to influence the game.
Expired cannot die, they can only wake up.
s, when they die, become Reborn. This is the closest of the three to picking up a new character and rejoining the party: they are reborn into the body of another shifter, possibly one born before the original died, and continue playing as a fresh, Tier 1 character.
Playing a Reborn
Playing a Reborn is exactly like playing a Shifter, with two exceptions:
- The character is given to the player, not chosen. They start at Tier 1 as before.
- The new character has a type of "Reborn". Unlike Shifters, Reborn cannot continue when they die. Although in the fiction they may keep being reborn indefinitely, the player only gets one chance.