Disintegrations

pukunui

Adventurer
Hi all,

During the last session of one of my campaigns, the PCs ventured into the Underdark, where they encountered a beholder. They rather foolishly decided to engage it in combat. While they ultimately managed to defeat it, one of their number was sadly disintegrated in the process.

I now have two questions:

1) Did all of the PCs' magic items get disintegrated as well? Or are they lying on the ground, coated in the dust of their former wielder but otherwise fine?

2) Is resurrection good enough to restore a disintegrated person back to life or is true resurrection required?

Thanks in advance!

Jonathan
 

MonsterEnvy

Adventurer
Hi all,

During the last session of one of my campaigns, the PCs ventured into the Underdark, where they encountered a beholder. They rather foolishly decided to engage it in combat. While they ultimately managed to defeat it, one of their number was sadly disintegrated in the process.

I now have two questions:

1) Did all of the PCs' magic items get disintegrated as well? Or are they lying on the ground, coated in the dust of their former wielder but otherwise fine?

2) Is resurrection good enough to restore a disintegrated person back to life or is true resurrection required?

Thanks in advance!

Jonathan
Magic Items are explicitly unaffected, the non magical gear is gone though.

Edit nevermind resurrection is not good enough.

A disintegrated creature and everything it is wearing and carrying, except Magic Items, are reduced to a pile of fine gray dust. The creature can be restored to life only by means of a True Resurrection or a wish spell.
 

pukunui

Adventurer
[MENTION=6706188]MonsterEnvy[/MENTION]: Thanks. Out of curiosity, what is the source of the line you've quoted?
 

jgsugden

Adventurer
[MENTION=6706188]MonsterEnvy[/MENTION]: Thanks. Out of curiosity, what is the source of the line you've quoted?
The disintegrtion spell. While the beholder ability is not explicitly just like the spell, many DMs play it that way.
 

pukunui

Adventurer
Aha. Makes sense, I guess. The beholder does have a few wonky effects (like the petrification ray having a Dex save rather than a Con save).
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
I also accidentally disintegrated a PC last weekend (zombie beholder in Ravenloft). This happened in the Amber Temple, which is clearly suffused with all kinds of weird magical energy, so I'm thinking the PC may become a ghost until a more permanent solution can be found.
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
Sorry for the double post, but I just wanted to add that I'd welcome any suggestions for a permanent solution for the disintegrated PC. The player would like to get the character back, and I'd like to work with her on this. (This is for my DDAL season 4 Ravenloft campaign.)
 

77IM

Explorer!!!
Doesn't DDAL have special rules for having the Dark Powers bring people to life with a Dark Gift? That sounds like a really cool approach to me. If not, your DDAL options are somewhat limited, and Barovia hasn't got many spellcasters capable of casting even resurrection, let alone true resurrection. Although, if I recall correctly, one of the vestiges in the Amber Temple can grant the ability to resurrect people in some fashion... that would require (I think) another PC to take a Dark Gift. Mmmmmmm, love me some Dark Gifts...
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Sorry for the double post, but I just wanted to add that I'd welcome any suggestions for a permanent solution for the disintegrated PC. The player would like to get the character back, and I'd like to work with her on this. (This is for my DDAL season 4 Ravenloft campaign.)
About the only way to bring them back may be "The mysterious benefactor". For example they just show up next session with minor memory loss but with a strange tattoo and a feeling that at some point there's going to be a price to pay.

This can go several ways, anything from they're just living on borrowed time and will ultimately disintegrate again when they've accomplished their goal at the end of the campaign. Or maybe they need to do little things that seem inconsequential at the time. Give a stranger a copper piece or take a tapestry off a wall.

The mysterious benefactor does not need to be evil, they can just have motivations and goals that the group doesn't understand, and may never understand (particularly if the benefactor is an Arch Fey).

But this scenario is one of the reasons I don't care for the beholder zombie ... if you don't run a killer campaign I have a hard time justifying things that for a high level party would be an inconvenience that with a lower level party is PC ending.
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
Doesn't DDAL have special rules for having the Dark Powers bring people to life with a Dark Gift?
Yes, and I've considered that approach, but I'm not sure how long it should take. Is it instantaneous? Also, I assume it still works even if there's no body? And does the PC have to agree to be brought back? Because she's a cleric, and I don't think she would...
 
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Celebrim

Legend
In 1e if you were disintegrated, all of your gear (magical or otherwise) would have to pass an item saving throw versus disintegration or be likewise disintegrated. Since item saving throws versus disintegration tended to be 17's or better depending on the material in question, most of your gear was going *poof* as well. Not having the magic items effected is pretty much a mercy rule.
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
But this scenario is one of the reasons I don't care for the beholder zombie ... if you don't run a killer campaign I have a hard time justifying things that for a high level party would be an inconvenience that with a lower level party is PC ending.
I know what you mean, but on the other hand, Ravenloft is supposed to be dangerous. And the players weren't really taking the beholder zombie seriously; they're experienced players, so they don't have much excuse. They were leaving the beholder zombie for last while working on fighting the ogre zombies accompanying it instead, while it whittled down their hitpoints with its enervation ray, to the point that the disintegrate would kill a PC. At full health, they could each have taken a max-damage disintegrate blast and survived.
 
Answering before I read the thread... I'll probably make a fool of myself...
disintegrated in the process.
I now have two questions:

1) Did all of the PCs' magic items get disintegrated as well? Or are they lying on the ground, coated in the dust of their former wielder but otherwise fine?
You could go with the old Item Saving Throw paradigm. The PC failed his save, so each of his items must also save!

2) Is resurrection good enough to restore a disintegrated person back to life or is true resurrection required?
Depends on how you interpret "/body/ of a dead creature" ("remains" would have been more favorable to the possibility, IMHHO) and "restores any missing body parts."


But, really, the Disintegrate spell, itself, kinda spoils your fun...
5e Disintegrate said:
A disintegrated creature and everything it is wearing and carrying, except Magic Items, are reduced to a pile of fine gray dust. The creature can be restored to life only by means of a True Resurrection or a wish spell.
...but you can always rule the Beholder's Ray works a tad differently.

(Honestly, I'll be surprised if you didn't get that, 1st reply.)
Edit. Checked. Not surprised. ;)
 
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MarkB

Hero
The traditional halfway-house for this sort of scenario is Reincarnate. It provides a new body, so the sticking point is whether the pile of dust counts as "a piece of a dead humanoid".
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
I know what you mean, but on the other hand, Ravenloft is supposed to be dangerous. And the players weren't really taking the beholder zombie seriously; they're experienced players, so they don't have much excuse. They were leaving the beholder zombie for last while working on fighting the ogre zombies accompanying it instead, while it whittled down their hitpoints with its enervation ray, to the point that the disintegrate would kill a PC. At full health, they could each have taken a max-damage disintegrate blast and survived.
Sadly, there is no "save vs bad tactics". :uhoh:
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
The traditional halfway-house for this sort of scenario is Reincarnate. It provides a new body, so the sticking point is whether the pile of dust counts as "a piece of a dead humanoid".
I would think this might be a possibility with the zombie beholder. It wasn't even a full-strength zombie beholder, so maybe its eyebeam isn't the equivalent of a full-strength disintegrate spell.

I think what I'm going to do is offer my player three possibilities, each with a trade-off of PC coming back quickly versus PC coming back unchanged:

1. PC could come back very quickly but with a Dark Gift that will require a greater restoration spell to remove (the higher-level spell requirement is a reflection of the fact that the PC was disintegrated, not just dead).

2. The rest of the party could scoop up the dust and find a druid to cast reincarnate; the PC would come back with no negative effects but in a different body. In the meantime, assuming the player doesn't want to roll up a temporary character, the PC would be a ghost with limited abilities.

3. Player waits until the party finds someone who can cast true resurrection or wish, getting the PC back in her original body and with no negative after-effects. The player will definitely need to make a second character in the meantime.
 

ccs

39th lv DM
I know what you mean, but on the other hand, Ravenloft is supposed to be dangerous. And the players weren't really taking the beholder zombie seriously; they're experienced players, so they don't have much excuse. They were leaving the beholder zombie for last while working on fighting the ogre zombies accompanying it instead, while it whittled down their hitpoints with its enervation ray, to the point that the disintegrate would kill a PC. At full health, they could each have taken a max-damage disintegrate blast and survived.
So why are you bothering to worry about how to give the players character back?

Experienced players playing poorly deserve what happens to them.
 

jayoungr

Adventurer
So why are you bothering to worry about how to give the players character back?

Experienced players playing poorly deserve what happens to them.
Because I don't believe in PC permadeath unless the player is ready to retire the character. Having the PC come back changed and/or having to wait out the rest of the campaign before being able to play the character again is "punishment" (consequence) enough, IMHO.
 
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I would think this might be a possibility with the zombie beholder. It wasn't even a full-strength zombie beholder, so maybe its eyebeam isn't the equivalent of a full-strength disintegrate spell.

I think what I'm going to do is offer my player three possibilities, each with a trade-off of PC coming back quickly versus PC coming back unchanged:

1. PC could come back very quickly but with a Dark Gift that will require a greater restoration spell to remove (the higher-level spell requirement is a reflection of the fact that the PC was disintegrated, not just dead).

2. The rest of the party could scoop up the dust and find a druid to cast reincarnate; the PC would come back with no negative effects but in a different body. In the meantime, assuming the player doesn't want to roll up a temporary character, the PC would be a ghost with limited abilities.

3. Player waits until the party finds someone who can cast true resurrection or wish, getting the PC back in her original body and with no negative after-effects. The player will definitely need to make a second character in the meantime.
So the thing with Ravenloft if the character isn't willing to be brought back by a Dark Power, then they are probably out of luck. About the only real option is the ghost doing possessions since the body is destroyed. Since it is the Amber Temple, you could drop in a Sword/Ring of Wishes which could allow the player to be brought back. However, something has to be granting the wishes and it is going to be a dark power.

This was probably a place where the character should have used their inspiration to avoid that fate.
 

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