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Banishing Death - Non canonical Resurrection

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  • Banishing Death - Non canonical Resurrection

    If one were to propose an Exalted where the setting law against resurrection wasn't established, how might such an art look in Creation?

    I imagine it would be a lot more flavorful and interesting than a level 5 priest spell! And probably not all that easy!

    Yet some might be better than others? At what range of knowledge and wisdom might a Solar doctor make a four-day-dead child breathe? Are such arts even available to mere mortals, or the Dragonblooded?

    Surely such things are not easy or trivial or they would upend the social order of the world itself.

    I'm interested in stories! Stories about how people bring people back to life in the world of Exalted, and why it's interesting and epic, and who has learned these strange arts and what ironic and terrible/wonderful fates have befallen them.

    Note : I am ABSOLUTELY AWARE the canonical stance on bringing people back to life as well as the setting justification for it. This is not a thread for those debates so please only contribute if you have fun stuff to write or commentary on fun written stuff! We don't need to go over the 'why' of no-resurrection again. I'm not trying to be mean I just don't want to clutter up!

  • #2
    Well, I wouldn't make it easy. That's for sure.

    Assuming that this were possible, I would probably start with the 12th labor of Hercules or his later rescue of Alcestis from death for inspiration. Physically journeying into the Underworld to locate and guide the soul of the deceased back to Creation would be necessary. It would also be entirely insufficient on its own, and would probably (though not necessarily) the last part of a complete story. I would also probably require sorcerous working to prepare the deceased's once-living body to live once again. This of course would require someone who is capable of doing it (i.e. a sorcerer) as well as knowledge of how to do so (which might require bargaining with fell powers not of this world to obtain). Finally, I would also require that the deceased'slower soul be located and secured so that it can be sorcerously joined to his/her upper soul and body to complete the resurrection. This would be no mean feat since the lower soul is probably not going to cooperate.

    If the players pulled all that off successfully, I would probably consider it sufficient to effect a real resurrection. Of course, people (and not-people) would notice. There would be ramifications. Sometimes...



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    • #3
      One thing the developer brought up once was the idea of certain variations of death; I can't remember the exact terms he used, but it was something like the difference between a narratively significant death and a more technical kind of death.

      ​Your example of a child who has been dead for a few days has me wondering; exactly how dead is dead? Are we talking about somebody who fell through the ice in a pond or out of a tree, or somebody who has been savaged and largely eaten by a wild animal?

      ​I feel as though fixing up somebody who is still mostly intact and hasn't been inactive for too long should not be prohibitively difficult, while also being distinct from what might be called resurrection.

      It may or may not require special measures to hold their soul in place.

      ​In the Age of Sorrows, I think mortals and Dragon Blooded would need to have access to some old medicine or a fairly powerful god to get such a thing.


      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
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      • #4
        As death being final in exalted, I believe, is a deliberate attempt to reinforce the idea that Consequences Matter, I would suggest that actual resurrection, should it be made possible, require a major sacrifice to achieve. That way, the death could be undone without undermining the existence of consequences.



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        • #5
          While not instant "BAM! You're alive again!", one way you could "cheat" death might be to pull some major sorcery to get a person's soul to act like a Dragon King soul, where their next life regains all their old memories and personality as they grow up.


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          • #6
            I'd actually go biblical here and create a Solar Medicine charm tree which starts out as super CPR, returning someone to life within hours of their death and then upgrades into full on Jesus "Lazarus, come out!" Mode, where you can bring anyone back to life within 5 days of their death (for that is when the final ties between the body and souls unravel). I'd actually consider that tree borderline acceptable in canon Exalted, since it can't just bring anyone back to life, but I grant others might not agree.

            Other exalt types might actually have less significant restrictions on time than the Solars, but their forms should be no less restrictive for all that.


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            • #7
              In my games it's not terribly uncommon for me or the players to pull a page from The Princess Bride when it's important - "Oh, don't worry. He's not dead. He's just mostly dead, and there's a huge difference between being dead dead and being mostly dead."

              We even call it the Princess Bride Rule. Once per story a player can retroactively declare someone other than herself to not actually be dead (provided, of course, it makes sense in context - you can't claim that some scholar who died 30 years ago isn't dead dead). "Oh, that Buck Ogre hit that merchant and dealt like 50 health levels of damage to him, but he's just mostly dead."

              This gives the player an opportunity to rescue an important NPC who might have gotten whacked, or use it to keep another player from getting killed in an otherwise deadly situation. We introduced this rule back in our Old World of Darkness days where combat could get really fucking deadly (nothing like having someone throw a grenade at you, botching your dodge roll and then rolling no success to soak) and we've more or less kept it the same during subsequent games, even into our forays into other RPG lines where resurrection is difficult to impossible.

              I do like BrilliantRain's idea of making this into a Charm which allows for "Resurrection" of a type.

              *EDIT*

              More on the actual subject, I think it would be important to first figure out what sort of resurrection you're talking about and how common it is. Are you thinking of something like D&D where anyone can be brought back to life for the cost of a 25,000 gold diamond? Or are you thinking of resurrection as being something much rarer and less common? Would resurrection be able to push back old age? What about the idea of reincarnation? I could maybe see that as a Liminal or Abyssal or even Lunar Charm where you can return a soul to "life" by giving it a new body.

              One idea I had, years ago, was for a Lunar Charm that would allow you to eat someone and their soul, and then birth a new creature with their soul and their memories. Essentially a sort of rebirth. So you could take a great warrior and have him reborn into the body of a bear.
              Last edited by AnubisXy; 02-27-2017, 09:15 PM.

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              • #8
                The big ideological sticking point for me is the PCs trying to roll back the obvious consequences of their own actions.

                I'm okay with a Lazarus moment where you arrive too late to heal the sick person then heal them anyway because you're just that good. But I'm much more uneasy about the idea of slapping someone's decapitated head back on and going "oops! no hard feelings! Right?"


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                • #9
                  would be amusing to pull that on an exalt - only to find out that their exaltation didn't come back with them to life...


                  Malfeas F'Tagn - go check out my epic MLP/Exalted crossover "The Scroll of Exalted ponies" @ Fimfiction

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                  • #10
                    I would put a charm after Wholeness-Restoring Meditation or Healing Trance Meditation that allows a solar to treat a patient after (3 or essence) days after his death.

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