Monday, January 12, 2015

Expanded Reincarnation Tables - Back from the Dead with a Brand New Body

I don't care how you die, the most fun way to come back is reincarnation.  Sure, spells like raise dead and true resurrection bring you back just as you were before, but with reincarnate, you could come back as anything!  Well, so long as your definition of 'anything' is 'bugbear, dwarf, elf, gnoll, gnome, goblin, half-elf, half-orc, halfling, human, kobold, lizardfolk, orc, or troglodyte'.  I really like the element of chance involved in reincarnate; it feels right to be rolling on some big percentile table when you come back from the dead in D&D.  But it feels like there should be more options for what you come back as, for better or for worse.  So when one of the characters in one of my ongoing campaigns died (you'll see who in a later update), I decided the time was right to make my own table.  Well, tables.

I took some inspiration from the old AD&D version of reincarnate, which gave you a chance to come back as a centaur, a satyr, a badger, or any number of other woodland creatures.  It makes sense for a druid spell.  So on my tables, you have a chance (albeit a much smaller one) to come back as an animal or fey creature.  I even added plants and vermin, something I feel druids would appreciate, though the recipient of the reincarnate might feel a little less comfortable with it.  I think the possibility (however small) of coming back as a flower or a cockroach really adds to the sense of risk that this inexpensive shortcut back to the world of the living should have.

"Okay, maybe we should have sprung for raise dead, but I think we still have what it takes to bring down that lich!"
Illus. Paul Bransom via Wikimedia
I also wanted to expand the number of races you could come back as, making full use of the Advanced Race Guide.  This is where more of my own personal opinions went into this table, because there are some races in the the ARG that I am wholly against.  Some, like the half-vampire dhampir or the sci-fi android I left out because I think they are dumb and I would never let my players play them.  Others, like the half-wyvern half-kobold wyvaran and the four-armed kasatha, I think are overpowered, cheesy, and dumb, and I would never let my players play them.  But, hey, feel free to modify these tables to include them if you like them.  I won't judge.  I would have excluded the notorious Mary-Sue-bait catfolk race from my campaigns had one of my players not convinced me that they could be played realistically, like asshole cats, not just as special snowflake fetish-fodder.

I also, of course, put my own homebrew races in there.

So there are a lot of things a player could come back as using these reincarnation tables.  Even some monsters are available as rare options!  Take a look, and use them in your game if you like.

The following tables are © 2015 Jonah Bomgaars and d20 Despot.

Honey badger and dire honey badger can be found here.

Characters returning as dragons come back in the dragon age category that most closely matches their level -4

Perinin can be found here.  Togbins can be found here.  The changeling on the list is not the half-hag changeling available in the ARG and Bestiary 4, but my homebrew half-fey changeling which I have not yet posted here but an incomplete but playable version of which is available for my $3+ patrons on patreon.

There you have it - reincarnation tables that give you the chance to come back as a lot of different things, but still statistically favor the more 'normal' PC races.

I'm currently working on more optional rules to flesh out the reincarnation process.  Currently, the only one I've settled on is that you have a 5% chance of coming back in a body of a different gender.  I'm also considering giving druids (and only druids) who are reincarnated the ability to use their Wisdom bonus to adjust their percentile roll.  Other than that, I've got a lot of stuff on the backburner for this subject.  Maybe I'll release a pdf sometime: working title - The Ultimate Guide to Reincarnation: Getting to Know Your New Body.

-your shockingly racist d20 despot


Here are the probabilities for most of the options (excluding individual dire and fey animals, and the environment-dependent variants of animals) on the tables, in case you're into that sort of thing:

14% human
9% dwarf
9% elf
9% gnome
9% halfling
5% half-elf
5% half-orc
2.4% aasimar
2.4% changeling
2.4% ifrit
2.4% oread
2.4% sylph
2.4% tiefling
2.4% undine
1% come back in your original body
1% drow
1% duergar
1% orc
1% svirfneblin
0.72% goblin
0.72% kobold
0.48% catfolk
0.48% grippli
0.48% hobgoblin
0.48% lizardfolk
0.48% perinin
0.48% ratfolk
0.48% tengu
0.48% togbin
0.48% vanara
0.45% tree
0.3% atomie
0.3% brownie
0.3% dryad
0.3% faun
0.3% flower
0.3% grig
0.3% leprechaun
0.3% nixie
0.3% satyr
0.3% sprite
0.27% fey animal
0.25% badger
0.25% rat
0.25% raven
0.25% stag
0.25% wolf
0.24% bugbear
0.24% centaur
0.24% gnoll
0.24% ogre
0.24% vishkanya
0.24% wayang
0.2% owl
0.2% cat
0.2% eagle
0.2% hawk
0.2% horse, heavy
0.2% horse, light
0.2% lizard
0.2% minotaur
0.15% fox
0.15% goat
0.15% ram
0.15% shambling mound
0.15% small dog
0.15% toad
0.15% weasel
0.1% bear, black
0.1% doppelganger
0.1% griffon
0.1% hedgehog
0.1% otter
0.1% pegasus
0.1% porcupine
0.1% riding dog
0.1% small centipede
0.1% small scorpion
0.1% small spider
0.1% squirrel
0.1% tiny centipede
0.1% tiny scorpion
0.1% tiny spider
0.1% treant
0.1% unicorn
0.1% wolverine
0.1% worg
0.09% troglodyte
0.08% owlbear
0.05% aurochs
0.05% bat
0.05% bear, brown
0.05% bison
0.05% dire animal
0.05% giant eagle
0.05% giant owl
0.05% great cat
0.05% medium centipede
0.05% medium scorpion
0.05% medium spider
0.04% giant ant worker
0.03% other fey
0.02% cave fisher
0.02% cyclops
0.02% fire beetle
0.02% giant (hill)
0.02% giant (stone)
0.02% giant ant drone
0.02% manticore
0.02% medium cockroach
0.02% slicer beetle
0.02% small cockroach
0.01% ankheg
0.01% flail snail
0.01% giant (cloud)
0.01% giant (fire)
0.01% giant (frost)
0.01% giant (storm)
0.01% giant ant soldier
0.01% giant bee
0.01% giant flea
0.01% giant fly
0.01% giant wasp
0.01% large centipede
0.01% large cockroach
0.01% large scorpion
0.01% large spider
0.002% faerie dragon
0.002% pseudodragon
0.001% wyvern
0.0005% dragon (black)
0.0005% dragon (blue)
0.0005% dragon (brass)
0.0005% dragon (bronze)
0.0005% dragon (copper)
0.0005% dragon (gold)
0.0005% dragon (green)
0.0005% dragon (red)
0.0005% dragon (silver)
0.0005% dragon (white)

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