Undying and the importance of the body

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Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Alexander » Wed Sep 30, 2015 10:45 pm

I would simply like to know if the body is required for an Undying to return: if their body is a requirement, or if they can return somehow after a body is completely destroyed, or broken into pieces and scattered, and similar. There was some discussion tonight regarding possible avenues of preventing an Undying from returning. If any of this is common knowledge, whether it would or would not work, it would be wonderful to know.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Fayne » Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:23 am

Well, we at least know that a body can be pretty destroyed and still be viable, since a number of players were revived from skeletons that had been picked clean in the past.

I would imagine you would need some kind of original material from the person's body to revive them, but I'm not sure how much. I guess this is a question equally concerning the limitations of the Inner Light's healing abilities. Can it regenerate an entire body from just an arm? A head? How about a tooth? How much of a person do you need in order to still be able to restore their flesh?
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Rias » Thu Oct 01, 2015 7:52 am

It is possible for Undying to come back even if their corpse is lost. Burned to ash, eaten and digested by a drakolin, thrown down a seemingly bottomless chasm, ground into bone dust and scattered to the wind - those troublemakers still come back somehow. If it was that easy to get rid of them, there wouldn't be many Undying left. There are even points in history where an Undying dies and their corpse is interred somewhere, then that Undying sonovagun shows up to visit their own tomb or burial place. Talk about awkward, right? And yes, the corpse persists (how weird would it be to look at your own corpse, I wonder?). When these corpse-free returns do happen, they do tend to occur near where that person died or had recently been living. That is to say, if an Undying died in Grum and his corpse was lost, he isn't going to come back in his homeland of Ivial - he's going to come back somewhere in Grum, relatively near where he "died" before.

This is a big reason why the Lost Lands is such a popular place to dump your Undying troublemakers. They can keep returning back to life somehow, but at least they're still stuck in the Quarantine when they do come back. Naturally, shipping bodies back to their homelands for burial and the like are illegal practices, since there's always that worry that someone will return the Undying soul to its corpse when it's back.

How does this all happen, and why? Darned if you all know, but I know (mwa ha ha). There's definitely lore behind it, but it's not common knowledge. The fact that this does occur somehow is fairly common knowledge, though. It's fair to say that research into how to permanently end an Undying has been extensive over the ages, and no reliable/confirmed method has been discovered. There have likely been a lot of things that people thought worked, when really it was just that Undying's final death and not due to the method used to kill them or contain/destroy their soul or whatever. (Reminder: Undying don't have "unlimited lives" lore-wise - they're never sure which death might be their last.)

Unfortunately, the depart mechanic as it currently stands doesn't reconcile with the "corpseless return to life" thing because when that's the case, the new body obviously wouldn't have all their old inventory. That'd stay on the previous corpse. So if you depart under current mechanics, you can't really claim it was a corpseless return. The "respawn points" are also fairly OOC still - I suppose they're where they are because that's where we assume your corpse ended up to be Soul Beaconed/Soul Retrieved off-stage somehow.

Lorewise, Soul Beacons (thaumaturgic) are more versatile than Soul Retrievals (sorcerous), because thaumaturgy can restore lost body mass seemingly from nothingness utilizing minimal remains, while Soul Retrieval requires that the body still be in relatively good condition and workable after applying some posthumous unguents and sorcerous procedures to get the body in a workable state. The latter cannot be done if, say, the body is missing a head, or the entire stomach has been ripped out, and so forth. For "it's a game" reasons, we generally assume player corpses tend to be in a good enough state for a Soul Retrieval to work.

How much is required for a Soul Beacon? That's harder to nail down. You'd definitely need more than a tooth or a fingernail or something. But how much, I couldn't really say at this point. Whatever the case, for the sake of preventing griefy behavior, I doubt it'll ever be possible to mechanically destroy corpses to prevent Retrievals, let alone Beacons. Unless we come up with some way to make up for that via new death mechanics, I guess. I wouldn't count on that, though.
Last edited by Rias on Thu Oct 01, 2015 10:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Rias » Thu Oct 01, 2015 8:57 am

Q: If someone has multiple corpses, can all the corpses be Beaconed/Retrievaled/turned into revenants?
A: No, because there's only one soul. It might be fun to turn one's own previous corpse into a ghoul, though.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Acarin » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:35 am

So... a quick question then. Is it possible for an undying to become a true sentient nethrim (i.e. a lich or something similar)? Does the lore behind being undying support this kind of existence as well or is the death of a nethrim generally considered to be permanent?

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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Rias » Thu Oct 01, 2015 10:00 am

Considering the most common avenues of immortality attempts require tainting the soul as completely as possible (essentially becoming nethrim), it's safe to say that the "death" of nethrim is in no way guaranteed to be the permanent end of that entity. Nothing seems to indicate that Undying are somehow exempt from becoming liches while non-Undying are able.

I'd say more, but I'd rather that be revealed via IC means. With the Octum Festival and the storytellers and loreytellers that'll be showing up, that'd be a great place to try and find someone to ask these types of questions.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby jilliana » Thu Oct 01, 2015 4:38 pm

Rias wrote:Q: If someone has multiple corpses, can all the corpses be Beaconed/Retrievaled/turned into revenants?
A: No, because there's only one soul. It might be fun to turn one's own previous corpse into a ghoul, though.


Ooooh! I like this idea. Too bad it won't happen. It's great for imagination.

As for the other stuff, thanks for the clarification. I've wondered about this stuff before but never remember to ask.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Kunren » Thu Oct 01, 2015 5:19 pm

jilliana wrote:
Rias wrote:Q: If someone has multiple corpses, can all the corpses be Beaconed/Retrievaled/turned into revenants?
A: No, because there's only one soul. It might be fun to turn one's own previous corpse into a ghoul, though.


Ooooh! I like this idea. Too bad it won't happen. It's great for imagination.

As for the other stuff, thanks for the clarification. I've wondered about this stuff before but never remember to ask.

Taric has seen his own corpse due to a bug! heheh. more seriously though, I love to get all this info, it really clears things up for me personally. I guess people who die and then pop up near to where they died pop up naked? Huehue. That'd be an interesting penalty to have in game, losing your equipment permanently or temporarily (if the corpse can be found and looted)
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby Fayne » Fri Oct 02, 2015 9:16 am

I've experienced a bug where I saw my own corpse as well. lol

I do think that'd be an interesting addition to the game, though. It'd also make things fairly interesting during events, and would likely change the entire way a lot of people play. Think about it: highly skilled player wanders into one of the toughest places in the game, or a lesser known area. Player dies for any number of reasons. Player cannot be rescued and Retrieved or Beaconed, so has to, uh, Reincarnate? Player then has to gather up new gear, or a spare set if they planned ahead, go back into the area, and retrieve their lost items from their corpse.

It could make tbings very interesting. People would have to start keeping spare equipment lying around for them to use. I imagine most people would want to hide a small package of clothing somewhere in the wilderness so they wouldn't have to wander into town naked, then they could keep a spare set of equipment in a bank vault somewhere, or keep a spare key there so they can get into their house. And then it'd give some very mischievious Rooks quite a fun game to play, trying to find their own or other player corpses to reanimate and confuse people with.
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Re: Undying and the importance of the body

Postby TwistedAkai » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:01 am

Fayne wrote:I've experienced a bug where I saw my own corpse as well. lol

I do think that'd be an interesting addition to the game, though. It'd also make things fairly interesting during events, and would likely change the entire way a lot of people play. Think about it: highly skilled player wanders into one of the toughest places in the game, or a lesser known area. Player dies for any number of reasons. Player cannot be rescued and Retrieved or Beaconed, so has to, uh, Reincarnate? Player then has to gather up new gear, or a spare set if they planned ahead, go back into the area, and retrieve their lost items from their corpse.

It could make tbings very interesting. People would have to start keeping spare equipment lying around for them to use. I imagine most people would want to hide a small package of clothing somewhere in the wilderness so they wouldn't have to wander into town naked, then they could keep a spare set of equipment in a bank vault somewhere, or keep a spare key there so they can get into their house. And then it'd give some very mischievious Rooks quite a fun game to play, trying to find their own or other player corpses to reanimate and confuse people with.


Clothing sales would go through the roof, and I imagine there'd be the occasional store (or maybe just a stall) starting up in places where Undying tend to return, as people whose business sense outweighs how much they're creeped out see an opportunity in the pants sector.
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