Replacing a Dead Character

What do you do when replacing a dead character in a long running campaign? If the game has been going on for a long time how do you judge burning the new character? More Lifepaths? Training time? Bonus skill or trait points?
I’ve seen no where in the book for this.

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If you’re worried about the new character coming into the game balanced, don’t be. None of the characters are balanced. That’s not what this game is about.

It all comes down to the basics of character in BW: Concept, concept, concept. What is the new character about? What has it done up until this point? How was it tied to the story previously? Once you know who and what the new character is, you can decide what is needed for the Burning of that character.

This is going to require discussion and perhaps consensus with everyone else at the table. If someone feels bad that a new character is coming in with 5 life paths where they have four, maybe you just give four paths and some training time. If someone’s concept needs fewer paths than the others, maybe they still get some training time so they’re not botching every roll while the others are rocking the dice.

I’ve not seen any rules for it, either, but I think they’d be hard pressed to create any. Every game is different. Every situation needs a different solution.


Although it’s traditional to declare a number of LPs before burning starts, it’s actually supposed to be the other way around: players come up with concepts, and the GM says how many LPs makes sense.

Page 82:

Starting Lifepath Limit

Once the rough concept is in place, the GM will set a lifepath limit. The limit is based on the character concepts and the situation.

So the rules are there! We’re just used to glossing over them. :wink:

There’s good reason to limit LPs to start, but the flexibility of scrupulously going concept-first, then assigning a high enough (but not more) LP limit after is just what you need here. And yeah, don’t worry about balance too much. Just do the usual vetting of PCs to prevent cheese (pp. 105–6).

On the plus side, you have a very detailed situation for this PC to start into—it should be easy to find a concept and BITs that tightly, immediately tie them into the ongoing action!


Okay, fair enough. I’m just used to more structured character creation for that sort of thing.

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