Q: I have a character in my party using Wraithform in an haunted house. I would think this to be a very dangerous proposition. How do you think "ghosts" would interact with her?
I know the spell says undead of most sorts will ignore the caster; however, she has taken direct action against them, like cutting ghosts down with her sword. Actually, I should note that I mean ghost more generally. In game terms I think most the "ghosts" they've met would be considered Phantoms. These would normally be mostly harmless, simply wandering about or re-enacting their deaths and such. However, this character has now put herself more into their world. I'm curious what the effect "may" be.
I don't really see much in the rules about it, except for the description of the spell which says you become insubstantial and mentions the Ethereal. Reading this, people seem to be assuming that the spell actually puts you in the border ethereal, or at least partially. I guess that's a decent enough idea. This leads me to believe that she's put herself in grave danger, putting herself more on their "plane" so to speak. Anyway, I know that I can do whatever I want as DM, so what I'm doing is just giving these Phantoms more direction/powers now. I'm trying to take a page from various recent movies, and I've had them do that "shaking head" thing that seems so common today (which I hate, but it kinda works!) Then their faces turn from "normal" to "twisted" like the flying spirits in Raiders of the Lost Ark. Now they are using some kind of psychokinetic force to throw the Wraithform caster across the room.
I've been gradually increasing their strength, making them more agitated, and having them take more direct notice/action against the player. I was hoping that the player would "get the hint" and back off, maybe go back to normal. She hasn't. So, I plan to make all these Phantoms more and more powerful and deadly with each passing moment. Anyway, I was just wondering what others would think of the situation, and how you might handle it. I didn't envision them all turning into deadly ghosts, since they were supposed to be mostly harmless anyway. However, if the player insists on having his character "play around" with them on their plane, I think the gloves can seriously come off.
I agree with the spell in regards to most will ignore the character in wraithform. However, if said character is taking action against other apparitions. Then they will take an active role against said character. Some might even cross over and interfere in the characters affairs.
With the only true way to stop the apparitions is by having the said character cross over completely into the ethereal plane of existence. Where he or she must right the wrongs in order to appeased the angered spirits. Or become one of them permanently.
Another options is having the apparitions go after the characters family and friends making them contact him from the other side urging the character to give himself up.
I agree with the direction you are going with this, Ragnar, and Argon is also correct, in my opinion. If the PC is ethereal, she is on the same plane as the spirits. They all have physical form on the ethereal plane so they can hit each other without any chance of the attack passing through the bodies harmlessly. You'll have to decide what stats the phantoms have on the ethereal plane, but simply giving them physical form there and letting them attack her (when her companions can't help) should scare her out of her wraithform.
I highly recommend you getting a hold of the 1st edition book, Manual of the Planes if you are running any combat or adventures on any other Planes, the (Border) Ethereal included. Each Plane has its own character and effects.
The whole point of the spell mentioning that other undead generally ignore the caster is because the caster appears to now be undead. Undead haunt a place due to a hatred of the living. A wraith is not living, which is why the caster is generally ignored. And, if a person who was messing with a ghost now appears to now be a wraith, well, the spirit will assume that the living person is not only now dead, but is also now "living" its own tortured existence. And, do you think a spirit would want to end the tortured existence of a former living person that had been annoying them, or let them go on? I know what my answer to that would be.
That is why undead generally ignore the caster. Now, if the caster were to attack some undead while in wraithform, that just might cause them to no longer generally ignore the caster. _________________ - Moderator/Admin (in some areas)/Member -
Good answers. Thanks. I ended up backing off a bit, as did the player. I didn't want to push any further, making the phantoms more deadly, and he "got the message." The last straw was the phantoms all looking at him with death in their eyes, and some kind of telekinetic force propelled him backwards across the room. He figured it out then and split.
It's interesting. Sometimes players come up with a good idea that kinda takes a short-cut through something you figured was going to be tough. However, sometimes their ideas potentially raise all kinds of new issues and problems. This was almost one of them, but in the end I opted to not penalize the player for a good and interesting use of Wraithform.
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