Continued from this afternoon’s post.

So, character death. I thought this subject was significant enough to warrant its own entry. We lost our halfling rogue, Bree, in the second encounter of the adventure. She’d made the tactical error of placing herself between two heavy-hitting brutes, who thoroughly and quite completely squashed her. The brutes had taken heavy damage up to that point, but they scored three hits — the first one bloodied, the second one put her below 0 hit points, and the third wiped her out (critical hit took her below her negative bloodied value).

I find it fascinating to watch the players pore over their character sheets, looking for a way to save their fallen comrade — interrupts or reactions, or any other options they might have at their disposal — I think players examine their options most thoroughly when it might actually mean one of the characters might die. It makes sense that they’d do it then, of all times, but that doesn’t make it any less interesting to see how they focus on it.

I’m not anything close to a killer game master, namely because I don’t want any of the characters to die and I actually don’t like to be responsible for character deaths (I’d rather they die through their own action/inaction), but I do like to see the players take the well-being of their characters seriously, as though there were some point to whether they survived or not. I like to see them challenged, not slaughtered. :)