Farting around with AD&D content generation!
Over on the Twitter, Aaron the Pedantic asserted that resurrection in AD&D was more prevalent than in the Appendix N literature that inspired it. That seems true enough to me given that AD&D even HAS resurrection in it. Which Appendix N material has a straight-up “resurrection by priest” in it?
But the conversation gave me the impression that Aaron, and perhaps others, think resurrection is as common in AD&D as it seems to be in some later editions. I don’t think it is - purely the gut talking here. I can’t remember any resurrection in any of my AD&D games going all the way back; nary a one. I remember one time the party had to settle for a reincarnation, and that was a huge deal at the time.
Skip over the lower-level raise dead for the moment, which is great and all, but you need a fresher corpse. Let's stick with resurrection, since that's the verbiage we were using in the Twit thread. Resurrection is a seventh-level spell, so you need a 16th-level cleric with 18 WIS to cast it (PH20). Presuming you don’t have an 16th-level cleric in your party, how do you even get access to a resurrection spell?
You can't encounter a 16th-level cleric in a dungeon unless you're on the 16th level (or lower), per DMG175.
Seems like you’re better off finding a suitable cleric on the overland map. Maybe you know of one, in the big city in your campaign. I hope you do, because coming across a friendly resurrection-capable cleric while exploring the wilderness is extremely unlikely. Again, I’m just farting around here, and welcome commentary and picking-apart of any of this.
Chance a space/hex includes a castle: 3% (per DMG173, Random Wilderness Terrain)
Chance an uninhabited area has a fortress: 5% (per DMG182, Outdoor Random Monster Encounters) These seem like parallel methods; let’s default to the higher chance for our purposes here, 5%.
DMG183, castle size influences chance of “character type” inhabitants thusly:
But also have Humans result thusly (sending us to the Monster Manual for details):
Only four kinds of humans can be in that castle; let’s presume we’re rolling a 1d4 here and there are equal chances of the four.
Bandits can only have 5-6th level cleric
Berserkers, 7th level
Dervishes do much better, up to 12th level, but that won't hit the mark.
DMG184, if it’s a “character-type” castle, chance of a cleric is 18%.
This cleric is of level 9th-12th. Call it a 50% chance of having a character of 11th level or higher.
In order to have access to resurrection, the cleric must be 11th level and have the capacity to cast 7th-level spells (requiring 18 WIS, but note that NPC clerics get a +2 WIS; let’s presume for the sake of this investigation that any given 11th level cleric has 18 WIS).
Taking even the most generous spreads, that’s:
5%, 40%, 18%, 50%. That’s a .0018 chance of a given hex containing a cleric capable of casting resurrection on behalf of suitably-aligned PCs.
Am I gaming this out right? Do you actually have a better chance of finding a Dervish fortress in the wilderness than you do an other-cleric-owned castle? That’s pretty interesting by itself.
|Permanent death in the unexplored wilderness awaits!