Health, Healing and Hospitalization
There are no clerics in Gathox, and magical healing is a rarity. Thus, the ‘healing economy’ of Gathox operates somewhat differently than in other game settings.
A freshly generated character is allowed to start with the maximum possible hit points according to their class and ability scores. Each level acquired afterward requires the character to roll their normal hit dice, keeping a running total for hit points. This gives starting characters a slight but important advantage in terms of survivability.
In combat, tightly focused exploration, or other situations where time is measured in rounds and turns, the party may choose to rest for 1 turn per hour, allowing each character to recuperate 1 lost hit point on a successful 3d6 vs. CON check. Additionally, a character may choose to rest for an entire hour, healing 1d3+1 hit points with a successful 3d6 vs. CON check. In either of these cases, the opportunity to heal only applies to characters that have not reached zero or fewer hit points.
Med kits may also be applied to injured characters once per day for the purposes of healing; a successful 3d6 vs. WIS check by a character with a med kit to an injured party members allows for the healing of 1d3+1 hp. A med kit may be used three times before it must be replaced. Spells, abilities, and various sundry and magical supplies may allow for additional healing. Finally, a 6 hour shift of sleep allows for the full recovery of hit points. PCs who reach zero or fewer hit points immediately fall unconscious, and bleed out 1 hp/round until healed, medkitted, or they reach ½ CON in negative hit points and die.
If a PC is reduced to zero or fewer hit points, they will require a week of hospitalization at the rate of 50 gp/level. The cost increases with level because higher level PCs have more Hit Dice and tend to suffer more grievous and complicated wounds. The players may need to cut that hospital time short or save cash, which plays out as follows:
1) For each day less than 7 that a PC leaves the hospital early, they incur a 10% chance of infection. Infection consequences are left to GM fiat, with a nod toward creative results.
2) For every 10 gp less that a character pays for hospitalization, they suffer a 1 point penalty to all attack rolls and Saving Throws for the following week.
3) If a player wants to pay top dollar for intense restorative services and make it out of the hospital in a day, they can pay 100 gp/ level for the luxury of personalized care.
If players need on-the-spot healing while in the city but have not reached zero hit points, they have a 50% chance of finding someone to perform the service within a three block radius, and each character must spend 10 gp/ hp healed.
If a PC should perish in the course of adventuring, the following protocols may ensue:
1) Surviving party members split the character’s gear as they see fit, and the player rolls up a new character at level 1. Party members cannot confer the dead character’s possessions to the newly rolled character.
2) The player of the deceased character may choose to instead play as the deceased’s hireling, if such a character exists. This 0-level character need only accrue 500XP to reach level 1, at which time the player may choose an appropriate class and reroll HP. The hireling may inherit some of the deceased character’s gear at the party’s discretion. Leveled hirelings or henchmen may be substituted.
3) The deceased may opt to Reincarnate if the party follows the following procedure:
A) Bring the body and possessions of the deceased to one of the dozens of funeral pyres installed at the Catwalk of Private Vicissitudes.
B) Douse the body and possessions on the pyre with Dew-on-Iron alcohol (100 gp worth).
C) Light the pyre and watch it burn completely.
If the procedure is followed precisely, within 1d4 hours the reincarnated body of the deceased character will erupt from the ground wherever the party stands, naked and covered in mud, ready for action. A reincarnated character will have the following properties:
A) Same age and different gender.
B) A name that rhymes with the name of the deceased.
C) Will remember living life in a parallel, utopian version of Gathox; an Ur-Gathox, if you will.
D) Will have one ability score the same as the deceased, at the player’s pleasure.
E) Will possess 1 negative mutation, rolled randomly.
F) Will possess 1/2 the experience points of the deceased.
G) Will be of a class of the player’s choosing after ability scores have been rolled.
H) Will find a chicken skin pouch of coins in their left hand worth 1d6x10 gp.
I) May possess a hireling who appears, also naked and covered in mud, 10% cumulative chance per level of the deceased.
A character may reincarnate twice; the negative mutations of previous reincarnations carry over, so that a re-reincarnated character will have two negative mutations. After a third death, the character may be interred in the walls of the Tunnel of Punctuated Peace, splitting 5% of the experience points of the deceased between each of the remaining party members as well as a freshly generated character.