Gore in D&D

I disagree. You're extrapolating modern views backwards.

For example, "madness" and "hallucinations" were at various times considered gifts of the gods.

Moreover, your statement, 'I think cosmic horror's actual nethermost core is fear not of the unknown but fear of the recognized fact that something, even if percieved, can still be truly unknowable" happens to be what I wrote.

You know- "ineffable." It's not that it's unknown; it the concept (post-enlightenment) that it CANNOT be known, it cannot be grasped, and it will forever be beyond our ken.

But hey, opinions are just that! Keep on truckin'! :)
Nope. No im not. You are assuming a lot. Madness is not a new idea. Its a pretty common misconception that psychology is a new thing. It really isnt. It didnt start with mesmer and his theory of animal magnetism. People talk of madness in a context not bringing gods into play just as far back as there are tales of it involving gods. But also, lets say you were right (you arent). If you were right, you would still be wrong. Because what do we call a god plagueing your mind with unhelpful delusions and halucinations? Horrific perhaps? Cosmically so? Yes. A curse laid upon you by an inhuman possibly not fully comprehensible being? Starting to sound like lovecraft and poe yet? Or do hp and poe sound like them? Huh...
 
I just find the idea that ancient people had no theory of mind (something we consider a basic developmental milestone) and never attributing illness to things other than religion a bit of a massive inacuracy.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
as did i. I think you are assuming ancient people are going to think the gods are involved every time grandma cant remember her grandson's name. Kinda a stretch.
I think you appear to be unclear on when someone is exiting a conversation in a pleasant manner; you had two warnings, and this is the third strike.

Please do not respond to me further.
 
K. I didnt find it pleasant. I found it adversarial.

But i shall take your word for it and engage your points no further unless you engage mine. In which case ill obviously respond.

Your request is noted.
 

Larnievc

Explorer
What is your approach to gore in D&D, and in violent RPGs in general?

Are you someone delights in describing bloody scenes, and when might this cross the proverbial 'line'?

What is your method for describing gore in D&D, and do you recommend and forms of description, especially of violence.

If this varies by campaign, why is that, and how so?

Generally, what is your approach to gore and gory imagery in RPGs?
I get my guys to describe the killing blows their guys make. No one’s ever been bothered about gore.
 

Bohandas

Explorer
Nope. No im not. You are assuming a lot. Madness is not a new idea. Its a pretty common misconception that psychology is a new thing. It really isnt. It didnt start with mesmer and his theory of animal magnetism. People talk of madness in a context not bringing gods into play just as far back as there are tales of it involving gods. But also, lets say you were right (you arent). If you were right, you would still be wrong. Because what do we call a god plagueing your mind with unhelpful delusions and halucinations?
Indeed IIRC there is an old saying that those who gods wish to destroy they drive mad. And while the English version of this saying is only a century and a half old, it is nonetheless a paraphrasing of a line from the 2500 year old ancient Greek play "Antigone"
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
I get my guys to describe the killing blows their guys make.
Weirdly, that didnt occur to me. But yeah, good idea.



When a hostile drops to zero hit points, that is when the killing hit happens. It is appropriate for the player to describe this fatal hit. After all, the player character is the one that made that hit and can decide what kind of hit that is.

This approach has a number of favorable results.

Allowing the player to control the narrative in this circumstance, gives the player a feeling of control, and a way to express satisfaction after a possibly difficult struggle.

The player also decides the level of gore. (The DM can gauge ones own goriness in light of what the players seem to prefer.)



This also applies the other way around. For the sake of convenience, nonplayer characters die at zero hit points. But instead, player characters enter the dying condition at zero hit points. The DM decides what the lethal hit looks like that reached the zero hit points. This narrative description then determines any enduring injuries, such as scars.
 

Aebir-Toril

When life gives you Lenin, make Leninade!
A new concept for the thread: "How do you describe the deaths of PCs, and do you consider how difficult it will be for the group to resurrect their fellow when you describe the mutilation and horrible dismemberment of the PC"?

Do concerns over resurrection impact how PCs die?
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
A new concept for the thread: "How do you describe the deaths of PCs, and do you consider how difficult it will be for the group to resurrect their fellow when you describe the mutilation and horrible dismemberment of the PC"?

Do concerns over resurrection impact how PCs die?
I like immortality. So, I am less of a fan of permanent death.

Currently, there are four resurrection spells: Revivify, Raise Dead, Resurrection, and True Resurrection.

I love Revivify exactly as it is. Essentially, it is something like the magical version of resuscitation. And level 3 is appropriate.

However in comparison, the other three resurrections spells are less useful, even punishing. Really there only needs to be two resurrection spells.
• Revivify (when body is reasonably whole and death is just within minutes)
• Resurrection (when the body or soul no longer exists, or resurrection would otherwise be impossible).

Revivify can probably absorb Raise Dead. In other words, at level 3, if the body is only dead within minutes, then the ally comes back to life without penalties. But if the body has began decomposing, then it should return with levels of Exhaustion, that take upto several days to recover from. If the body is destroyed, such as missing a head, then Revivify automatically fails.

Resurrection should be able to create a new body, to bring anyone back to life regardless of how the ally died or how long ago. The spell should even be able to reconstitute the ‘echos’ of a destroyed soul. Resurrection should be able to handle impossible situations, including self-resurrection. Therefore, such a version of Resurrection probably belongs as a slot 9 spell, comparable to Wish. Because Resurrection creates a new body, it should also be able to restore an ally that is trapped in suspended animation or to destroy an undead by creating a new living body. Meanwhile, a reverse version of the Resurrection spell might be employed to deny a foe the possibility of a resurrection. In this case, trying to Resurrect a denied ally would be similar to Dispel Magic, and difficult to succeed.

If the only two spells are Revivify and Resurrection, then slot 3 Revivify meets the needs of most recoveries from death in the D&D gaming experience. By contrast, slot 9 Resurrection comes into play for those rare events of an awful demise. Meanwhile the Resurrection spell is useful for the capacity to self-resurrect.



So, to answer the question.

Revivify is fine most of the time. Most of the time there is no destruction of vital organs, and the spell would heal any mortal wounds, such as reattaching a head.

For those times when the body has been destroyed, the fellow party members need to find someone who knows the slot 9 Resurrection spell to create a new body. In some situations, the player of the destroyed character might want a new character to figure out a way to Resurrect the destroyed character.

Finally, if the narrative makes it clear that the body is destroyed, then that is what it is. The player still has options even if this would happen.
 
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Bohandas

Explorer
Do you guys remember the ballad of Sir Robin from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail"

"He was not in the least bit scared to be mashed into a pulp
Or to have his eyes gouged out and his elbows broken
To have his kneecaps split and his body burned away
And his limbs all hacked and mangled, brave Sir Robin

His head smashed in and his heart cut out
And his liver removed and his bowels unplugged
And his nostrils raped and his bottom burnt off
And his...

THAT'S ENOUGH!"
 
Do you guys remember the ballad of Sir Robin from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail"

"He was not in the least bit scared to be mashed into a pulp
Or to have his eyes gouged out and his elbows broken
To have his kneecaps split and his body burned away
And his limbs all hacked and mangled, brave Sir Robin

His head smashed in and his heart cut out
And his liver removed and his bowels unplugged
And his nostrils raped and his bottom burnt off
And his...

THAT'S ENOUGH!"
"And his nostrils raped" is my favorite part. XD
 
I like immortality. So, I am less of a fan of permanent death.

Currently, there are four resurrection spells: Revivify, Raise Dead, Resurrection, and True Resurrection.

I love Revivify exactly as it is. Essentially, it is something like the magical version of resuscitation. And level 3 is appropriate.

However in comparison, the other three resurrections spells are less useful, even punishing. Really there only needs to be two resurrection spells.
• Revivify (when body is reasonably whole and death is just within minutes)
• Resurrection (when the body or soul no longer exists, or resurrection would otherwise be impossible).

Revivify can probably absorb Raise Dead. In other words, at level 3, if the body is only dead within minutes, then the ally comes back to life without penalties. But if the body has began decomposing, then it should return with levels of Exhaustion, that take upto several days to recover from. If the body is destroyed, such as missing a head, then Revivify automatically fails.

Resurrection should be able to create a new body, to bring anyone back to life regardless of how the ally died or how long ago. The spell should even be able to reconstitute the ‘echos’ of a destroyed soul. Resurrection should be able to handle impossible situations, including self-resurrection. Therefore, such a version of Resurrection probably belongs as a slot 9 spell, comparable to Wish. Because Resurrection creates a new body, it should also be able to restore an ally that is trapped in suspended animation or to destroy an undead by creating a new living body. Meanwhile, a reverse version of the Resurrection spell might be employed to deny a foe the possibility of a resurrection. In this case, trying to Resurrect a denied ally would be similar to Dispel Magic, and difficult to succeed.

If the only two spells are Revivify and Resurrection, then slot 3 Revivify meets the needs of most recoveries from death in the D&D gaming experience. By contrast, slot 9 Resurrection comes into play for those rare events of an awful demise. Meanwhile the Resurrection spell is useful for the capacity to self-resurrect.



So, to answer the question.

Revivify is fine most of the time. Most of the time there is no destruction of vital organs, and the spell would heal any mortal wounds, such as reattaching a head.

For those times when the body has been destroyed, the fellow party members need to find someone who knows the slot 9 Resurrection spell to create a new body. In some situations, the player of the destroyed character might want a new character to figure out a way to Resurrect the destroyed character.

Finally, if the narrative makes it clear that the body is destroyed, then that is what it is. The player still has options even if this would happen.
I like a lot of your suggestions here. Oddly enough though, i also like immortality and yet, it actually makes me like having the option for permadeath even more and vice verse. Weird.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
A new concept for the thread: "How do you describe the deaths of PCs, and do you consider how difficult it will be for the group to resurrect their fellow when you describe the mutilation and horrible dismemberment of the PC"?

Do concerns over resurrection impact how PCs die?
I don't think it impacts my narration. I go with what follows and, if that's mutilation or the like, then so be it. In my experience, players almost never opt to raise dead or the like anyway. They just tap in a replacement PC and carry on.
 

Unwise

Adventurer
I play in the Warhammer setting. My descriptions are pretty much full blown body-horror. The PCs fight a great deal of chaos stuff, so the descriptions of mutations etc lends itself to that. Unconsciously I don't tend to describe wounds done to PCs or friendlies much, probably because of the way HPs work.

PCs are likely to split open the guts of a foe, only to find a tentacle writhe out from inside and grab at their weapon. One bad guy got his head split, only for the PCs to find a mass of maggots where the brain should be.
 

Aebir-Toril

When life gives you Lenin, make Leninade!
I play in the Warhammer setting. My descriptions are pretty much full blown body-horror. The PCs fight a great deal of chaos stuff, so the descriptions of mutations etc lends itself to that. Unconsciously I don't tend to describe wounds done to PCs or friendlies much, probably because of the way HPs work.

PCs are likely to split open the guts of a foe, only to find a tentacle writhe out from inside and grab at their weapon. One bad guy got his head split, only for the PCs to find a mass of maggots where the brain should be.
Interesting, I've heard that Warhammer is very dark and gritty, correct?

I always find it interesting how some settings seem so much better simply because of how injuries function.
 

Unwise

Adventurer
Interesting, I've heard that Warhammer is very dark and gritty, correct?

I always find it interesting how some settings seem so much better simply because of how injuries function.
Yes, the setting certainly is and the RPG lends itself to that too. I actually play D&D 5e in that setting, so the grittiness is really only from my DMing, not the system itself. I tried realistic injuries for a while, but it dragged gameplay down to a crawl. It is the old problem of fighters wanting a short rest and mages wanting a long one all over again, some of the PCs being dragged around very sick for a few sessions before getting to rest.

I'm actually playing Curse of Strahd, reskinned to be in Warhammer's Sylvania region, with the PCs being inquisitors trying to purge the vampire Von Carstien.
 

Shemeska

Adventurer
I wish I could do it as good as @Shemeska in his story hour but my skills on that are quite meager and I fear that for at least some of my players @Shemeska 's style is a bit above their threshold.
Yeah it's all about knowing the expectations of your players and their desire for/tolerance of that sort of content. I make sure that everyone at the table is aware of the themes and tone that they'll be facing prior to a game and adjust as necessary from there. Plus when I was running my storyhour's campaign I was doing surgical work at the time, so what became mundane for me on the job might have carried over into the game I suppose. :)

I also modulate it for convention games, dialing back anything too extreme, but for instance at my last PaizoCon I said something along the lines of, "Well it's good that we have a room with just us and doors we can close, because there's one particular NPC that might end up screaming obscenities depending on what you all do."
 

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