Death has different interpretations but all of them lead to one definition: the total loss of health.
Alternatively, the recently deceased get a visit from a dark hooded skeleton with supernovas buried in its eye sockets wielding an agricultural implement; referred simply as Death, or formally as the Grim Reaper.
Perhaps one of many significant events a hero will inevitably come across - so much so its diary entry gets bolded.
Heroes that have died - contrary to popular belief - don't get to the afterlife and meet their maker. Instead, their soul hangs about around their corpse waiting for a divine helping hand.
On one hand, they still retain their senses and can horrifically smell their bodies rotting and grimly watch the maggots infest them to their own despair. On the other hand, some even start to enjoy the momentary rest from all their questing by hanging around in Death's lounge and read a magazine or two.
After a while, heroes get used to dying over and over. The oldest heroes have been to hell and back hundreds of times, in fact. Death is never much of a permanent problem when you have your very own personal god...
Causes of death
There are only two causes a hero can truly be dead from:
- While fighting a monster with low health and failed to run away in time; or
- Listening and successfully performing a voice command containing any combination of the following words: die/dead/death.
By low health, it would mean 19 HP or lower. Usually heroes avoid a gruesome fate by running away at 18 or lower, but monsters - especially strong ones - can deal the coup de grâce to an unlucky hero that often happens to get damaged during the fight, either by punishment or by happenstance. This is when the hero's chance of dying is almost likely to occur.
Other events that can cause damage; such as losing to a boss-monster or another hero's fight, divine punishments/backfired encouragements and random events while out on a field (e.g. traps, fishing inspectors, ravaging a thieves' hideout, etc.) will NOT cause death to occur; their health will simply be at only 1 point remaining and usually either patch themselves up or head back to town.
Keep in mind that, while deaf, stupid or both, heroes have a strange aversion to committing suicide, so it can take MANY attempts using the voice method for it to be successful. Its chances could be higher with an aura of audibility and with the help of the weather, if possible.
Just after crossing the river Styx, the hero loses all of his gold and loot he had in their bag and gains a tally mark to the death count, losing some positions in the Pantheon of Survival. From all the shock, any point of interest on the map will be gone as well. Heroes that are building a temple would be granted a golden brick posthumously, though not in all cases.
These can all be recouped in the land of the living, but reducing the death count is a little tricky; this requires the use of black boxes like mystery boxes and such to obtain notarized documents to knock a death or two off and correct accordingly, but caution be advised as it's also how notarized death certificates can be obtained.
Thankfully, the only things that get spared from being given to the Grim Reaper are their quest progress and their god's godpower, experience, equipment, skills and collectibles like golden bricks and gopher wood logs.
While their equipment is kept on their corpse, it may rust - losing their durability and boldness, as well as their auras will disappear upon resurrection; rarely would the Grim Reaper grant the revived heroes with an aura of spookiness possibly only during Halloween.
Despite being dead, the hero can still write in their diary, though apparently no more than 8 entries at a time - leaving some old entries denoting the death event (even though it's recorded also in the Third Eye, if applicable.) The first few would be minutes after death and then spaced out gradually to several hours.
It is worth noting that aside from resurrecting, gods cannot activate any of the artifacts while their heroes are in a dead state. They can interact with the bingo to some extent, but cannot collect a coupon from the newspaper.
Reasons to (literally) die for
- Fulfilling a side job that requires resurrection (once or twice);
- To get rid of a pesky infestation of tribbles (said to be much more annoying when the hero has become a trader);
- The Martyr achievement:
- Honored Martyr: 300 deaths
- Martyr, 1st rank: 150 deaths
- Martyr, 2nd rank: 50 deaths
- Martyr, 3rd rank: 10 deaths
- The longer the hero stays dead, the more likely to get more activatables.
- Purposefully wanting to get rid of a knocked-out pet by resetting the coin count as well as granting the 24-hour cooldown.
- More personal reasons, such as delaying the final brick construction of the temple to oversee it and its unique Earthly News for the last time.
This influence is only available on top of every other available influence on the remote control when the hero is dead. It is the only action that doesn't take godpower and is free (0% gp) to use.
Otherwise, eventually their body may be discovered either by guildmates, friends or pagan priests (as a last resort,) and be prepared for burial to a nearby town from the milestone where the hero was killed or back to Godville. Since their peers are so helpful, they always carry a hero's equipment too so nothing would seem amiss.
When 24 hours (or more precisely, 23:40 hours) have passed or upon pressing the button - whichever sooner, the hero gets his health back to full, be in a town inside their temple and pray to their god.
Even if his god didn't resurrect him for whatever reason and let the hero do that himself after a day since his death, his mood could be down and be sour at his Almighty for not doing his celestial duties.
And even so, he would soon forget about it and just enjoy being able to drink, slay and pray once more - same as being resurrected by their own personal god. After all, no matter how much they had, it's all but a minor setback at the worst.
Being it a frequent occurrence, a conventional hero can kill 100-200 monsters a day on average. With a kill count of hundreds of thousands over their lifetime, a hero can't help but notice that some monsters can appear to always come back and encounter the same monster multiple times - suspecting either their Lord or the coveted God of Monsters.
Some monsters may let out a death rattle just before dying. After killing a monster, heroes often find gold coins, an artifact, both or none from their corpse. While some diary entries could state a monster's passing, some tend to be implicit:
In some cases of special monsters, they could yield something else or on top of their regular loot. Wanted monsters will leave behind some proof to be exchanged in a town. There are also specific monsters that only drop a specific artifact (e.g. Godville Administrator, Holykeeper, etc.)
Just like heroes on low health, monsters can randomly decide to bribe with "free samples from a part-time brewery" or run away from the fight, leaving a disgruntled hero behind for the latter and nothing to show to the monster kill count.
Regular boss-monsters will also yield a "trophy" of their own: a body part (or two) that may either be sold for great amounts of gold, or in the case of lab-owners to be put in cold storage for constructing their own Frankenstein-style boss-monster.
In the days of old, pets would be subjected to a slow and painful death, leaving both hero and god to shed tears for their fallen comrade, if he couldn't be brought back to his senses in time. Nowadays, unlike heroes and monsters, pets are essentially immortal and in particular, cannot die.
However, immortality comes at a cost; a particularly devastating blow can still knock a pet out during a fight with a monster - trying to save the hero's life.
Pets cannot be awaken by a mere press of a godly button like heroes. Instead, a hero must persuade a priest to heal the knocked out pet, by requiring ~450 gold coins for each level of the pet.
If a hero fails to heal the pet within 60 hours after that event, the pet will wake up as if nothing happened, but will lose all levels and the will to compete.
Even if no actual death of a pet is involved, it's generally agreed upon to use the term "rez" (short-hand for resurrection or revival for the pet.)
When a lab boss-monster is summoned into the fight, it is capable of being killed either by having their health run out or its master get defeated before it did. In that case, the usual 18-hour cooldown will become doubled to 36 hours.
If a boss dies in the Datamine, it's still considered a regular run and will not deviate from its usual 6-hour cooldown.
- Godville Blog, post 80: Arena 2.0
- Godville Blog, post 105: Auto-Discharge
- Godville Forum topic 1641, post 557250 by Jimbob64
- Godville Blog, post 34: Fine tuning gameplay (unless lost to a Questing/Enlightened special monster, respectively)
- In-game hints § Hero's death
- Godville Blog, post 60: Best Pets Forever