Oftentimes when you are playing your favourite fantasy RPG a player character will die, and a replacement is needed post-haste or the player will get bored and feel left out of the action. Frequently, in these circumstances, it is inconvenient and makes no narrative sense for the other characters to go back to town so they can find a replacement for their chopped up chum. In these circumstances, games such as Dungeon Crawl Classics, where weird is good, have a distinct advantage over the competition. It is in that spirit that I present the first draft of a table of weird and wonderful ways that new characters can be introduced mid-adventure.
I have chosen non-lethal methods, as having the player go to the effort of generating a character then killing them off straight away is a dick move. It wouldn't be a dick move, and I'd in fact encourage lethality in the table, if you are using slabs of pre-gen characters anyway.
Roll d20! The new PC appears at the most appropriate moment according to the method rolled.
- Found in a cage hanging by a crossroads. No gear.
- Realistic doll in a treasure chest, grows to human-size and comes to life when touched by PCs. Has gear.
- Is a prisoner being paraded on a pole by a band of (GM’s choice). No weapons, GM’s choice of other gear.
- Found a barely conscious bloody mess by the side of the path. Has gear.
- Staggers onto the scene, drunk. No memory of how they got there. Has gear.
- Stuck as a statue for d1000 years. Other PCs actions free them. Has gear.
- Was hired to take a message to the other PCs, and has followed them into danger. Has gear.
- Is dropped from the sky by a giant bird, falling d20 metres. Has gear.
- Crawls out of a portal to hell. Gear or no gear, GM’s choice.
- Is a nearby corpse, and is suddenly resurrected by actions of other PCs. Gear or no gear, GM’s choice.
- Runs onto the scene naked and screaming. No gear.
- Is locked in combat with (GM’s choice). Has gear.
- Fades slowly onto this plane over several hours, using the other PCs as an anchor. Can converse with them. Has gear.
- Stuck at the bottom of a pit trap, injured. Has gear.
- Drank fizzy lifting drink and can’t get down from a high place. Has gear.
- Is stuck in the form of an animal, released from curse by the actions of the PCs. Has gear.
- Springs fully formed from the mind of another PC. Has gear.
- Appears in a flash of lightning and a thunderclap. Has gear.
- Bursts from the stomach of a vanquished beast. Has gear. Is gooey.
- Surfaces in a body of water, gasping for air. Has gear.