[Ghostwalk] Step-by-step making of a ghost

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[Ghostwalk] Step-by-step making of a ghost

Post by Big Mac » Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:58 am

I just found a thread called Step-by-step making of a ghost? over at Sean K. Reynolds' forums. In the thread Duke Sammael asks for detailed instructions on turning high level PCs into ghosts and Sean K. Reynolds is kind enough to go into detail. I thought I'd repost his reply here:
seankreynolds at Sean K. Reynold's forum wrote:
Duke Sammael at Sean K. Reynold's forum wrote:What I'd like to see is a step-by-step conversion of an existing (high-level would be good) character into a Ghostwalk ghost, as an example. The sample 1st level dwarf warrior provided in the book isn't particularly helpful.
Step 1: Add the template on page 163. This means:
... change type to outside (incorporeal).
... give it a fly speed of 30 (good) if it's incorporeal.
... give it a deflection bonus equal to its Cha mod (minimum +1)
... give it low-light vision if it doesn't already have it.
... give it no discernable anatomy (immune to crits and such).
... make it incorporeal.
... give it a Str score of -- (none).
... give it a +4 racial bonus on Hide checks.

If they start gaining levels, normally they'd have to take levels in eidolon or eidoloncer, but if you're not running a dedicated Ghostwalk campaign and you're just using the ghost rules that's not necessary.
I've not used Ghostwalk yet, but I think it might be fun to "kill" some well known 3rd Edition NPCs, just to see what happens to their stats when they are converted into ghosts.
seankreynolds at Sean K. Reynold's forum wrote:
Duke Sammael at Sean K. Reynold's forum wrote:Another point of interest is a ghost wizard. If he doesn't have the appropriate [Ghost] feats, he can't even turn pages, much less prepare spells from a spellbook. Am I missing something, or is Ghostwalk only intended to take place in Manifest (which I have no intention of using), and doesn't support adventuring ghosts - at all?
The Ghostwalk book assumes you're adventuring in Manfest and subject to the Manifest Ward, which means:

... you're not incorporeal.
... your ghost-based deflection bonus becomes a natural armor bonus.
... you regain your normal Str score.

If you're not running a Ghostwalk campaign and you don't want to create some place like the Manifest Ward for your campaign, just give the PCs the benefit of the Ghost Hand feat (they can manipulate one item at a time). Or go hog-wild and just let them hold all of their stuff like before. If the point of them running around as ghost is to let them try weird ghosty stuff, it doesn't make sense to screw them out of using their equipment during that time, so....
Duke Sammael wants to use the GW rules in Forgotten Realms, but I think the default Ghostalk options are very interesting, as dead PCs would pretty much need to remain in Manifest until they could level up and learn how to do stuff outside of the city.
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Re: [Ghostwalk] Step-by-step making of a ghost

Post by willpell » Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:34 am

Very strange point that comes to mind as I read this... I just rewatched an episode of Star Trek Voyager which revolves around the Emergency Medical Hologram, aka The Doctor (no, not that one, and take off that ridiculous scarf). As the name implies, he is a hologram, a projection of light held in with forcefields and with a mind made up of computer subroutines, and his mind and body only exists while the program is running. He can only be present on parts of the ship that have holo-projection machinery, primarily the sickbay; if he so much as sticks his arm out the door of sickbay into the corridor, his hand simply vanishes, and reappears when he pulls his arm back past the doorway, to where the projectors can generate it again. I would imagine that a ghost sticking his arm across the boundary of the Manifest Ward would experience something similar (the boundary should probably not be that abrupt, but it could be if this was where you wanted to go with it); the difference is simply that if the EMH walked bodily out of sickbay and vanished completely, the computer would probably turn off the program, so his mind would stop existing until the next time a crewman reactivates him. But if he were a ghost leaving Manifest, he'd still exist, he just couldn't physically interact with the world of matter anymore.

(Random side note...being incorporeal kind of sucks because you have no Strength score, making it impossible to exert any physical force on the world around you. What if there was a different condition where you stopped having a Charisma score, and could no longer exert any *mental* force on the world? Maybe this is what the Plane of Shadow feels like, at least if you're half-in-half-out the way ghosts are half ethereal; if you're a shadow of yourself and you try to talk to a real person, you can converse with them and even convey information, but you can't make them *care*, can't affect them socially any more than an incorporeal thing can affect them physically. Could make a pretty chilling curse, especially if you want to turn someone into a Cassandra, or make them feel like a conspiracy nut.)

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Re: [Ghostwalk] Step-by-step making of a ghost

Post by Big Mac » Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:40 am

willpell wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:34 am
Very strange point that comes to mind as I read this... I just rewatched an episode of Star Trek Voyager which revolves around the Emergency Medical Hologram, aka The Doctor (no, not that one, and take off that ridiculous scarf). As the name implies, he is a hologram, a projection of light held in with forcefields and with a mind made up of computer subroutines, and his mind and body only exists while the program is running. He can only be present on parts of the ship that have holo-projection machinery, primarily the sickbay; if he so much as sticks his arm out the door of sickbay into the corridor, his hand simply vanishes, and reappears when he pulls his arm back past the doorway, to where the projectors can generate it again. I would imagine that a ghost sticking his arm across the boundary of the Manifest Ward would experience something similar (the boundary should probably not be that abrupt, but it could be if this was where you wanted to go with it); the difference is simply that if the EMH walked bodily out of sickbay and vanished completely, the computer would probably turn off the program, so his mind would stop existing until the next time a crewman reactivates him. But if he were a ghost leaving Manifest, he'd still exist, he just couldn't physically interact with the world of matter anymore.
You are right. The EMH is limited in Star Trek Voyager, and other Star Trek shows, in a similar way to the way that ghosts are limited in Ghostwalk. It's not quite the same though, as he is an artificial person, rather than the remains of a dead person.

Arnold Rimmer, from Red Dwarf, is probably a slightly closer example to ghosts in Ghostwalk. He is also a computer projection, but he is a computer projection based on a scan of a human being who had since died. Effectively, he is a science fiction ghost, as opposed to the EMH, who is a science fiction projected android.

Rimmer has the exact same personality he had, when he was alive, but works differently, just like ghosts are dead people who work differently in Ghostwalk.
willpell wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:34 am
(Random side note...being incorporeal kind of sucks because you have no Strength score, making it impossible to exert any physical force on the world around you. What if there was a different condition where you stopped having a Charisma score, and could no longer exert any *mental* force on the world? Maybe this is what the Plane of Shadow feels like, at least if you're half-in-half-out the way ghosts are half ethereal; if you're a shadow of yourself and you try to talk to a real person, you can converse with them and even convey information, but you can't make them *care*, can't affect them socially any more than an incorporeal thing can affect them physically. Could make a pretty chilling curse, especially if you want to turn someone into a Cassandra, or make them feel like a conspiracy nut.)
I think that's more something that goes with the Does Ghostwalk stop "death stinking" in D&D? topic, than this one.

But, going back to your earlier comment about the Emergency Medical Hologram, the thing about that is that they cheated in Star Trek Voyager, modifying the ship, so that he could leave sick bay. They also cheated with Arnold Rimmer in Red Dwarf. In fact they cheated more, as they created a "hard light" projector that floated around inside him making him solid.

Ghostwalk also "cheats" with magic spells and magic items to allow ghosts to do stuff outside of Manifest.

I think the way to really make things easier for a ghost outside Manifest is to extrapolate Ghost Touch items from Ghost Touch Armor and Ghost Touch Weapons.
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
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