Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

"And if I die I'll see you in Manifest before I go."
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Big Mac
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Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

Post by Big Mac »

Page 75 of the Ghostwalk book talks about how the practice of taking the dead to the Grand Portal resumed after the time of Durgerth the Conqueror (and eventually became know as the "Ghostwalk").

But the section on using standard classes in Ghostwalk (on pages 4-6) talks about both Clerics (except Clerics of Aluvan or Dracanish) and Paladins being uncommon in Manifest and mentions that both of them might mistake the ghosts of Manifest for undead.

Here is what the Cleric section says:
Ghostwalk > Introduction > The Ghostwalk Campaign > Classes wrote:Clerics in and around Manifest server either Aluvan or Dracanish. Those not from the city of Manifest often have a difficult time with the presence of the ghosts, at least at first. Of course, when an ignorant cleric attempts to turn ghosts in Manifest, the targets usually just chuckle or scowl and sigh.

Ghost clerics are usually torn individuals. They would like to pass on to the next world and meet the god they have served so faithfully, yet there's always more work to be done in the mortal world.
Here is what the Paladin section says:
Ghostwalk > Introduction > The Ghostwalk Campaign > Classes wrote:Paladins are uncommon in Manifest. Of the two most commonly worshipped deities in the city, Draconish does not inspire paladins, and Aluvan does so only rarely. Paladins from outside the city who have been taught that ghosts are "undead that ought to be dispatched" have a difficult time, finding themselves in the strange position of being on the wrong side of the law. Even those who realise and accept the situation are occasionally uneasy in Manifest. Still others adapt and have no problem working with or even existing as ghosts, happily fighting against the evil undead and necromancers that threaten the city from time to time.
So neither of these write ups takes away player agency and forces PC Clerics or Paladins to start off with anti-ghost views, but this does kind of go against the "A Ghost is not a Ghost" sidebar on page 8:
A Ghost is not a Ghost wrote:Whenever this book refers to a "ghost," it is not talking about a Monster Manual ghost. In fact, because being a ghost is so common and easily achived, the ghosts described in the Monster Manual are almost unheard of. The few references in literature that speak of these undead ghosts refer to them as "undead skulkers," "undead haunts," or "undead spirits" and have problems differentiating between them and other incorporeal undead such as spectres and wraiths. These references and the people of the world never confuse these creatures with the sort of ghosts who inhabit Manifest.
I previously was trying to work out how many people would die per day (to try to figure out how many ghosts would appear in Manifest per day). And I was looking at this from a point of view of how many people would be able to afford to have their bodies sent in on the Ghostwalk.

But the stuff about Clerics (other than Clerics of Aluvan or Dracanish) and the stuff about Paladins suggests that there is more to Manifest's relationship with it's world than certain countries being far to distant for everyone to take part in the Ghostwalk.

There is obviously an element of certain countries in the world (possibly most countries in the world) not actually knowing that the ghosts in Manifest exist.

The description for the Barbarians says that a lot of the react badly, if they die and turn into a ghost. That makes sense, as Bararians are not supposed to be well educated, but Clerics and Paladins generally get trained in churches that have access to a fair bit of information. (And knowing that everyone who dies goes off to a city called Manifest, and that you can travel there to find out what they were doing before they died, seems like information that a church would pass around.)

I guess there is a zone of ignorance outside of Manifest, where people don't know that it, the Veil of Souls and the ability of dead souls to take physical form as ghosts exists.

I've seen charts, where people make a d20 roll on an information skill and can find out different levels of information, based on what DC they can meet.

I guess that, if that system was reverse engineered, you could come up with a set of DCs where knowing things in Manifest was automatic, knowing them further away was DC 5, knowing them even further was DC 10, then DC 15 then DC 20 and then harder and harder and harder.

I think it would be logical to assume that the countries in the Ghostwalk book are the ones where some sort of trade with Manifest happens...and the three borders of the map (the Kingdom of Durrath, Temaaki grasslands and the lands to the west) are the places where the general ignorance of Manifest starts.

The the Bazareene/Durrath border seems to be a fairly hostile one. And the Temaaki are horse nomads and probably don't have big libraries full of information on other countries. That's probably good reasons for a zone of ignorance there.
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Re: Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

Post by Tim Baker »

Interesting deduction. I wouldn't have thought the knowledge of the ghosts in Manifest wasn't widespread, but you point out solid clues. Nicely done.

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Re: Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

Post by SinLeqiUnninni »

Ghostwalk, page 134 wrote:Using Ghostwalk with other D&D worlds

The draw of the True Afterlife should extend about 500–1,000 miles from Manifest, and outside that range the normal D&D rules for death and souls apply.
I'd use those numbers, regardless of whether or not there's anywhere"the normal D&D rules" apply on the Ghostwalk world. Their upper limit puts you off the map. I just did some measurements (Note: I did not measure from the official map in the 3.5 update; the fan map I used might've had a different scale), and the furthest places from Manifest are 582 miles away from the city. If you use those numbers, there's probably some knowledge about Manifest outside the countries detailed in the book, with knowledge declining until you hit that 800-1000 mile zone where most people believe in something not too different from the 3.x core cosmology. Beyond that zone you're in the solidly ignorant zone, save a few eccentric scholars and travelers who believe obscure stories about a far away city of specters.

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Re: Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

Post by Big Mac »

Tim Baker wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 7:00 am
Interesting deduction. I wouldn't have thought the knowledge of the ghosts in Manifest wasn't widespread, but you point out solid clues. Nicely done.
I was thinking the same myself...but then I realised the text didn't support my assumption.

I do think it is a bit off, thought.

That's why I was suggesting that people should be able to make Knowledge checks to work out the deal with Manifest.
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Re: Ignorance of ghosts away from Manifest

Post by Big Mac »

SinLeqiUnninni wrote:
Thu Mar 05, 2020 4:27 am
Ghostwalk, page 134 wrote:Using Ghostwalk with other D&D worlds

The draw of the True Afterlife should extend about 500–1,000 miles from Manifest, and outside that range the normal D&D rules for death and souls apply.
I'd use those numbers, regardless of whether or not there's anywhere"the normal D&D rules" apply on the Ghostwalk world. Their upper limit puts you off the map. I just did some measurements (Note: I did not measure from the official map in the 3.5 update; the fan map I used might've had a different scale), and the furthest places from Manifest are 582 miles away from the city. If you use those numbers, there's probably some knowledge about Manifest outside the countries detailed in the book, with knowledge declining until you hit that 800-1000 mile zone where most people believe in something not too different from the 3.x core cosmology. Beyond that zone you're in the solidly ignorant zone, save a few eccentric scholars and travelers who believe obscure stories about a far away city of specters.
That's a brilliant idea SinLeqiUnninni!

I didn't think of hacking those "Using Ghostwalk with other D&D worlds" rules to use Ghostwalk with it's own world.

The thing about "the normal D&D rules for death and souls" is that people do not need to believe in the True Afterlife or not to use the normal D&D rules in the Ghostwalk world.

You can have someone die, zip along the Ethereal Current past Manifest and straight over to the True Afterlife. And you can have a PC or NPC get resurrected outside Manifest.

I would stick with the rule about PCs not being able to gain information about the True Afterlife (for the entire world). And I would stick with the rule for people forgetting things if they are brought back from the dead.

As for whatever map you have, I've only ever heard of two maps.

One is Sean K Reynold's original sketch map (which has some unusual symbols on it).

The other was made by the late James O'Rance, who also did some cool Taladas stuff, back in the day.
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
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