Monster/NPC/Adversary Reactions To Death

Copyright 2014 Peter Maranci

A while ago I saw a list somewhere of monster reactions to death. It wasn't what I was expecting; I'd hoped for interesting reactions that opponents would have TO death, but instead it was a list of strange effects that could happen to a dying creature, such as exploding or changing color. It was rather like some of the chaotic features in the Chaos Project, actually.

So of couse I decided to start writing my own list. Here are the first twenty sixty eighty. If anyone likes these (or even if they don't), I may come up with more.

  1. Adversary seems startled to realize that it has actually lost the battle - and its life.
  2. Adversary weeps pitifully as life fades.
  3. Adversary furiously attempts to pull together maimed or dismembered parts and scoop up lost blood.
  4. Adversary laughs uncontrollably.
  5. Adversary is defiant to the end, spitting its last breath at thee.
  6. Adversary feigns death, not realizing that it is actually dying.
  7. Adversary begs its slayers to take care of its child/children, who will now be orphans.
  8. Adversary offers location of valuable treasure in exchange for healing.
  9. Adversary refuses to believe that it is dying.
  10. Adversary tries to crawl away.
  11. Adversary sees (or pretends to see) the Grim Reaper or some other personification of death.
  12. Adversary kills itself rather than give its slayer the satisfaction.
  13. Adversary prays for divine intervention.
  14. Adversary prays a pitiful prayer from its childhood.
  15. Adversary sees a light, with its parents at the far end.
  16. Adversary attempts to trick its slayers into a trap which will get them killed.
  17. Adversary lays a dying curse on its slayer(s).
  18. Adversary peacefully expires.
  19. Adversary dies with an expression of indescribable bliss on its features.
  20. Adversary claims to have been under the influence of a mind-controlling effect.
  21. Adversary angrily blames a companion for getting it into this situation.
  22. Adversary begins swearing, amazing all within earshot with the depth and creativity of its profanity.
  23. Adversary lets out a single, relatively mild expletive.
  24. Adversary sarcastically announces its retirement from adventuring, guard duty, or whatever its function was.
  25. Adversary cries for its mother.
  26. Adversary sets its jaw and dies in stoic silence.
  27. Adversary tries to get out a healing potion from a pouch or pack, only to discover that it is broken and empty.
  28. Adversary thanks the party for killing it, as it was terminally ill and hadn't wanted to die in bed.
  29. Adversary becomes ravenously hungry, eating anything within reach.
  30. Adversary vomits uncontrollably.
  31. Adversary becomes absolutely terrified and explains to everyone in reach that it cannot die right now. It's not ready.
  32. Adversary falls asleep.
  33. Adversary is amazed at the sensation of life ebbing from its body, and tries to tell others what it feels like.
  34. Adversary expresses relief that it will no longer have to do or experience something it hated.
  35. Adversary frantically tries to find writing implements in order to write a quick note to a loved one, or a will.
  36. Adversary begins a meditative chant which fades out as it dies.
  37. Adversary lets out a huge cloud of flatulence.
  38. Adversary sneezes and then screams in pain.
  39. Adversary threatens the party, telling them that its friends will avenge it.
  40. Adversary becomes extremely aroused.
  41. Adversary becomes extremely depressed and tells everyone that it always knew that this was going to happen.
  42. Adversary dies with a look of utter horror on its face (or whatever it uses for one).
  43. Adversary reverts to childhood, and dies not understanding what has happened.
  44. Adversary complains of a strange smell that it can't quite describe.
  45. Adversary becomes entranced by something beautiful that only it can see. Reaching for the thing, it dies.
  46. Adversary's wounds itch unbearably.
  47. Adversary tries to get up and continue to fight.
  48. Adversary worries about something inconsequential, such as damage to its armor or a nearby mess.
  49. Adversary gives instructions on how it wishes to be dressed and arranged for burial.
  50. Adversary tries to tell a joke, but dies before reaching the punchline.
  51. Adversary says it has finally learned something: death sucks. I mean, it REALLY sucks.
  52. Adversary clutches its wounds in a panic.
  53. Adversary pounds the ground in anger at its fate.
  54. Adversary asks for one last cigarette, or the equivalent.
  55. Adversary asks for a kiss.
  56. Adversary complains of difficulty breathing.
  57. Adversary is surprised at how painful its wounds are.
  58. Adversary is surprised that it feels little or no pain.
  59. Adversary announces that this is only a dream, and tries to wake up.
  60. Adversary offers the party one last chance to surrender.
  61. Adversary soils itself.
  62. Adversary screams itself to death.
  63. Adversary drags itself to its nearest fallen companion (if applicable) and attempts to embrace it.
  64. Adversary tries to fling itself over a cliff, or into water, or into a fire, if any such are available.
  65. Adversary tries to hide or destroy some object of value that it possesses.
  66. Adversary attempts to pick the pocket of anyone who comes near it.
  67. Adversary sings - beautifully.
  68. Adversary begins a one-sided conversation with its god.
  69. Adversary tries to sell its soul to the devil (or equivalent, if applicable) for healing and the power to kill the party - or for escape.
  70. Adversary tries to take mind-altering drugs.
  71. Adversary tries to take a suicide pill or potion.
  72. Adversary coughs, producing blood if it has been wounded in the lungs.
  73. Adversary suddenly has an insight into the meaning of the Universe. It may or may not try to share this.
  74. Adversary sees the form that it will take in its next life.
  75. Adversary dies saying the name of the one that it loves.
  76. Adversary recites its death poem.
  77. Adversary cleans or grooms itself so that it will leave a good-looking corpse.
  78. Adversary struggles to get out of its clothing, shouting "I want to go out the way I came in. Naked, bloody, and screaming!"
  79. Adversary becomes delirious, believing that its life was a dream and it is waking up to a better reality.
  80. Adversary attempts to auction off its belongings.

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Copyright 2014 by Peter Maranci. Revised: February 03, 2015. v.1.6