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Hzurr
2010-03-22, 01:40 PM
In 4E, it feels like Deva are unique from all the other races, in that they have a very specific cycle of reincarnation, so they function very differently from normal PCs. This made me wonder a few things:

Can Deva be undead?

First off - Generic undead, like zombies or skeletons? Once a Deva's body reincarnates, what happens to the corpse, especially if it's been animated to stand up and walk around? My understanding is that the old corpse sticks around, and a Deva forms a completely new body, so I don't think that this would change things too much.

Second part - Intelligent Undead. What happens if a Deva becomes a Lich, or vampire, or something like that? Do they simply stay alive indefinately, only to re-incarnate as a Raksasha once someone finally destroys the Phylactory or puts a stake through the heart or whatever? If a Deva is turned into an undead against his or her will, will that affect whether or not the Deva comes back as a tiger-man?

Kurald Galain
2010-03-22, 02:05 PM
Can Deva be undead?
Yes. As a matter of fact, so can a warforged.

Arbitrarity
2010-03-22, 02:08 PM
Revenant Deva meeting its reincarnation... this concept amuses me.

Mark Hall
2010-03-22, 02:18 PM
A) I love where this is going. No wonder you're excited about this upcoming adventure!

2) I would say that a deva can become an intelligent undead, but you have to do it quickly. There's really no time frame on reincarnation listed that I'm aware of (Do they reincarnate the moment they fail the 3rd death saving throw? Is it after 20 years? 50? 500?), but most of the available types of intelligent undead would work as Deva.
If the Deva became a Lich or what have you through its own volition (i.e. some ritual to make itself undead, because it... wasn't living long enough?), then, yeah, killing it makes it a raksasha. If it happened for some other reason (beaten by wights or other spawner), then I'd only consider its life prior to undeading... what happens after it gets turned into a hideous creature of the Endless Night isn't really its fault.

1) Sure, you can use the corpse for undead, unless immortals specifically crumble to dust or something when killed.

As a side comment, since I know where our campaign is, have you considered my idea for the deva who is an insane, wants-the-world-to-end Starlock? Kind of a "I want out of this cycle of reincarnation and the only way to do that is to destroy the universe?" It would go along with the previous mind flayer plot and the fact that, if we switch days, SOMEONE is going to play a Monk. You know it, I know it. Dude's gonna be a monk.

Swordgleam
2010-03-22, 02:30 PM
Wait, wait. So if you somehow can control where a deva reincarnates, all you need is one deva to make an army of undead. Just keep killing it, raising the corpse, killing the new one, etc. For bonus points, find the strongest/whateverest deva you can find to use, or use several devas ("there are many copies") for different varieties of troops.

If you're a rakshasa and can choose where you reincarnate, you can make an army of undead of yourself.

Hzurr
2010-03-22, 02:38 PM
As a side comment, since I know where our campaign is, have you considered my idea for the deva who is an insane, wants-the-world-to-end Starlock? Kind of a "I want out of this cycle of reincarnation and the only way to do that is to destroy the universe?" It would go along with the previous mind flayer plot ...

Not going with that plot exactly, but something vaguely related to that. (I actually really like that villain idea though, but I'm saving it for a different campain). I'm simply trying to address the very real issue that I've got two Deva in the underdark who have a side quest to rescue another deva who was taken captive there 500 years prior. A DM needs to be prepared for these kinds of things.

Thajocoth
2010-03-22, 02:46 PM
There's a monster in Dragon that's an undead Deva between lives. They're like a ghost, and some of them try to stay that way if they think they're going to be reborn as a Rakshasa.

Kurald Galain
2010-03-22, 02:49 PM
Wait, wait. So if you somehow can control where a deva reincarnates, all you need is one deva to make an army of undead.

Well, except if they reincarnate as toddlers and grow up from there...:smalltongue:

shadowmage
2010-03-22, 03:04 PM
The last DDI artical about Deva Epic Destinies has this to say

Unlike other races, devas have a skewed perspective on concepts such as mortality and legacy. Devas do not die and pass into the realm of the dead like other races. Instead, they become bodiless spirits that inhabit the spirit realm of the world, drifting for years in a dreaming state, only to be reborn again in an adult deva body. Wicked devas are reborn as rakshasas, and many believe that redeemed rakshasas are reborn as devas.


Well, except if they reincarnate as toddlers and grow up from there...:smalltongue:

LOL Sorry no they dio appear in fully grown bodies.

Thajocoth
2010-03-22, 03:04 PM
Well, except if they reincarnate as toddlers and grow up from there...:smalltongue:

Officially, they come back as full grown adults, with the knowledge they need to live, but no real memory. Occasionally they can remember a little from past lives, but almost nothing.

However, it takes years for a Deva to return to life...

Hzurr
2010-03-22, 03:30 PM
One of my players (possibly Mark Hall) suggested at one point that Devas reincarnate at random points in time and space, and that there are really only 2 Devas, and they just continually re-incarnate and any other devas they run into are just alternate versions of themselves.

Mando Knight
2010-03-22, 03:31 PM
Officially, they come back as full grown adults, with the knowledge they need to live, but no real memory. Occasionally they can remember a little from past lives, but almost nothing.

It's like the most ridiculous case of amnesia ever. Not only does the Deva not know where his pants are, he barely even remembers who he himself is. Especially if he was a she last incarnation...

And they're stuck in this cycle. For an indefinite amount of time. Rakshasas must be totally insane.

One of my players (possibly Mark Hall) suggested at one point that Devas reincarnate at random points in time and space, and that there are really only 2 Devas, and they just continually re-incarnate and any other devas they run into are just alternate versions of themselves.
One is called "The Doctor," the other "The Master." The Master also happens to be all of the Rakshasa.

Theodoric
2010-03-22, 03:37 PM
Well, the corpse can be reanimated, ofcourse. Now, vampire Deva, that's a different thing entirely.

Mark Hall
2010-03-22, 03:40 PM
One of my players (possibly Mark Hall) suggested at one point that Devas reincarnate at random points in time and space, and that there are really only 2 Devas, and they just continually re-incarnate and any other devas they run into are just alternate versions of themselves.

That sounds like me.

Hzurr
2010-03-22, 04:03 PM
One is called "The Doctor," the other "The Master." The Master also happens to be all of the Rakshasa.

I've actually considered playing a Deva who was basically the Doctor. Anytime someone asked me about how Deva reincarnation worked, I'd start mumbling about a big ball of "timey-whimey" stuff.


Now, vampire Deva, that's a different thing entirely.

How so?

Swordgleam
2010-03-22, 05:03 PM
There's a monster in Dragon that's an undead Deva between lives. They're like a ghost, and some of them try to stay that way if they think they're going to be reborn as a Rakshasa.

That makes no sense. Rakshasas are awesome. Who wouldn't want to be reborn as one?

Asbestos
2010-03-22, 05:46 PM
Revenant Deva meeting its reincarnation... this concept amuses me.
See, I don't think that would work because I believe the Revenant maintains the soul of whatever it was first. This actually makes the concept of a Revenant Deva very confusing since, nearly by racial definition, the Revenant is a reincarnated member of Race X and Devas auto-reincarnate as Devas or Rakashas (spelled awful I'm sure). I'd have to see some damn special back story to allow a Revenant Deva were I a DM.

Asbestos
2010-03-22, 05:49 PM
Now, vampire Deva, that's a different thing entirely.

Well, if Vampires are soulless then the Deva soul has already passed on and is waiting to be Reincarnated in a new body (possibly to go murder its vampiric former body)

Doesn't the Undead book go over this Animus vs Soul concept?

Hzurr
2010-03-22, 07:38 PM
That makes no sense. Rakshasas are awesome. Who wouldn't want to be reborn as one?

Your hands are backwards, so you're stuck using left-handed scissors even though you're right handed.

And those things are impossible to find.

Mando Knight
2010-03-22, 07:52 PM
See, I don't think that would work because I believe the Revenant maintains the soul of whatever it was first. This actually makes the concept of a Revenant Deva very confusing since, nearly by racial definition, the Revenant is a reincarnated member of Race X and Devas auto-reincarnate as Devas or Rakashas (spelled awful I'm sure). I'd have to see some damn special back story to allow a Revenant Deva were I a DM.

Devas spend a variable amount of time in between reincarnations. One of their suggested backgrounds is having an abnormally long "off-period" to their last reincarnation cycle... something on the order of a couple centuries instead of a few weeks or years.

taltamir
2010-03-22, 08:04 PM
are elementals still considered living creatures in 4e? because that would mean you could make an undead elemental. (not a skeleton) as long as you have a method to directly transform a creature from living to undead without it being dead (since they don't leave a corpse when killed).

Swordgleam
2010-03-22, 08:10 PM
Your hands are backwards, so you're stuck using left-handed scissors even though you're right handed.

And those things are impossible to find.

So if you're a left-handed deva, you want to be reincarnated as a rakshasa. :smallbiggrin:

Thajocoth
2010-03-22, 10:11 PM
are elementals still considered living creatures in 4e? because that would mean you could make an undead elemental. (not a skeleton) as long as you have a method to directly transform a creature from living to undead without it being dead (since they don't leave a corpse when killed).

Everything is a <size> <origin> <shape> (<special>), Level # <type>.

There are only 6 origins: shadow, aberrant, natural, fey, elemental and immortal.

Size, shape and type are equally limited. Terms like "undead" or "orc" fall under <special>.

So... Warforged are "Medium Natural Humanoid (Warforged, Living Construct)".

My point being that "Living" is no longer a distinction...

taltamir
2010-03-22, 10:15 PM
Everything is a <size> <origin> <shape> (<special>), Level # <type>.

There are only 6 origins: shadow, aberrant, natural, fey, elemental and immortal.

Size, shape and type are equally limited. Terms like "undead" or "orc" fall under <special>.

So... Warforged are "Medium Natural Humanoid (Warforged, Living Construct)".

My point being that "Living" is no longer a distinction...

i see...
pretty damn odd that warforged are of "natural" origin. their name and construct status would imply otherwise

Tiki Snakes
2010-03-22, 10:16 PM
Everything is a <size> <origin> <shape> (<special>), Level # <type>.

There are only 6 origins: shadow, aberrant, natural, fey, elemental and immortal.

Size, shape and type are equally limited. Terms like "undead" or "orc" fall under <special>.

So... Warforged are "Medium Natural Humanoid (Warforged, Living Construct)".

My point being that "Living" is no longer a distinction...

That said, If there isn't already undead elementals, I could very much see them as possible. (They'd end up doing stuff of element + necrotic variety a lot, of course.) There's certainly one or two interesting undead in the Open Grave book.

[edit] - As far as I follow, Warforged are Natural as in they didn't come from the shadowfell, the feywild, the far-realm, or etc. they come from 'The Natural World'. It doesn't really inherantly imply that they are mundane biological creatures, though they do have a little more 'biomechanical' thing going this time.

(Note to self; HR Giger inspired Biomechanical Warforged? Add to To-Do List.)

Gralamin
2010-03-23, 12:36 AM
See, I don't think that would work because I believe the Revenant maintains the soul of whatever it was first. This actually makes the concept of a Revenant Deva very confusing since, nearly by racial definition, the Revenant is a reincarnated member of Race X and Devas auto-reincarnate as Devas or Rakashas (spelled awful I'm sure). I'd have to see some damn special back story to allow a Revenant Deva were I a DM.

...Revenants are created by the Raven Queen directly. That means, to get a Revenant Deva, the Raven Queen simply has to grab the Deva. I assume gods can forcefully end the resurrection cycle :smallbiggrin:

Yakk
2010-03-23, 08:00 AM
http://www.parterre.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/10/zombee.jpg (http://parterre.com/2008/10/)

... what?

Geiger Counter
2010-03-23, 03:45 PM
Most outsiders in my campaign do not leave bodies behind when they die so it isn't possible to make them undead.

Siegel
2010-03-23, 04:20 PM
Wasn't it so, that there is no Deva Soul for Revenants

DragonBaneDM
2010-03-23, 05:17 PM
There's the Deva Fallen Star in MM2. So apparently you have to be VERY powerful as a Deva to come back as an intelligent undead.

Asbestos
2010-03-23, 06:33 PM
I think an undead that still has its soul would be a rare thing indeed, but not one that is soulless (such as a vampire).


From 'Open Grave'

Without its soul, a body immediately begins to die,
despite the animus that pumps blood and preserves
physical memory. The animus is also a connection
between the body and the soul that allows a creature’s
physical and spiritual aspects to act in concert.
Most undead, including many intelligent ones,
lack the soul that departed upon their body’s initial
death. These undead are driven to inhuman, bestial
behavior because they lack the moral compass that
served them in life; now all that remains is a decaying
body and an animus driven by needs unfiltered by
conscience. Many of these undead have an insatiable
hunger for living creatures

It also says this in regards to the animus:

Sentient living creatures have a body and a soul, the
latter of which is the consciousness that exists in and
departs from the body when it perishes. A body’s “life
force” that drives a creature’s muscles and emotions is
called the animus. The animus provides vitality and
mobility for a creature, and like the soul, it fades from
the body after death. Unlike the soul, it fades from
the body as the body rots.
If “revived” in the proper fashion, the animus
can rouse the body in the absence of a soul. (This
phenomenon is what makes it possible for creatures
that were never alive, such as constructs, to become
undead.)

Sydonai
2010-03-30, 03:30 PM
"Necromentals", undead Elementals, described in the "Libris Mortis".

Orcus, an undead demon.

Vecna a Lich god.

Atropal Scions and Angels of Decay.

I'd say that is proof that Outsiders can become undead.(and that undead can become outsiders)

Mando Knight
2010-03-30, 05:16 PM
Vecna a Lich god.

Vecna was undead before he became a god, I believe.

Hzurr
2010-03-31, 11:15 AM
Vecna was undead before he became a god, I believe.

yeah...it would be odd if he did it the other way 'round.

"I AM A MIGHTY DIETY OF DEATH AND MAGIC! HOWEVER, I AM SCARED OF DIEING OF OLD AGE, SO I WILL MAKE MYSELF A LICH!"

Lord of Syntax
2010-03-31, 11:54 AM
yeah...it would be odd if he did it the other way 'round.

"I AM A MIGHTY DIETY OF DEATH AND MAGIC! HOWEVER, I AM SCARED OF DIEING OF OLD AGE, SO I WILL MAKE MYSELF A LICH!"

Nope, he was a diety before he was a lich. He wanted to be closer connected with magic.

Hzurr
2010-03-31, 12:54 PM
Nope, he was a diety before he was a lich. He wanted to be closer connected with magic.

Hmm...well that's....silly.

Mark Hall
2010-03-31, 01:00 PM
Nope, he was a diety before he was a lich. He wanted to be closer connected with magic.

Uhhh... no. Vecna was a lich in Greyhawk long before he appeared as a deity. 4e may have retconned that, but the actual history of the character is of a lich who became a god, not a god who became a lich.

DragonBaneDM
2010-03-31, 01:32 PM
No WAY! Vecna clearly was a snow cone vendor in his early days! THEN lich, THEN spider-monkey rights activist, THEN god!!!

:smallbiggrin: