Updated Fri, Mar 07, 2008 by Xerin
Q. How do I "die" in WoW?
Death is a natural part of any MMORPG and World of Warcraft is no exception. When your health (HP) drops to zero then your character "collapses" and whatever was fighting you gives up. Your spirit leaves your body and arrives at the nearest graveyard where you are given a few options on how to come back to life.
Q: Ack, I died. What now?
A. You are no longer able to gain experience, interact with the world (do quest objectives, talk on say or yell, use emotes, or be visible to anyone other the your party and other ghosts), or do anything other then move around in the world, mess with your inventory, or interact with spirit healers.
There are five ways in which you can come back to life, depending on your class and other players:
Release and Walk Back: Click the "Release" button and travel from the graveyard your spirit was transported at to your body in the psuedo ghost form. While as a spirit (without a body) you'll be free to transverse the world at a slightly higher rate of speed immune from any enemy or obstacle. You'll find that you can levitate over water and you'll be invisible to any players (although your group is able to kind of see you) and all enemies. You can then follow the red arrow to reach your corpse at which time you'll be given the option to come back to life. You are given about a thirty yard radius around your corpse in which to resurrect at so be sure to pick a safe location. Around your corpse is the only location you’ll be able to see other enemies and players so be sure to pick a safe location to respawn at. Once you click “Resurrect” you’ll come back to life with 50% health and mana.
If you died inside of an instance you’ll need to travel to the instance’s entrance and go through the portal. You’ll resurrect inside of the instance at the entrance. This can be good and bad, as sometimes enemies respawn requiring you to clear through an area you’ve already done before.
Spirit Resurrect: Click the “Release” button and speak with the spirit healer who will give you the option of coming back to life immediately at the graveyard closest to your body. This comes with a penalty of course. All equipment (both equipped and in your inventory) will take a 25% durability hit and you’ll be given a “Resurrection Sickness” debuff that isn’t removable and makes you completely useless in combat for ten minutes.
If you attempt to go to another graveyard (they appear on your mini-map as tombstones) you'll find that when you choose to ressurect yourself that you'll be at the graveyard that is closest to your body. This is done to prevent traveling through dangerous zones by spirit healers.
Player Ressurection: Have a nearby Paladin, Shaman, or Priest use their resurrect ability on your corpse. This brings you back to life with however much mana/health the ability gives you. This can be used at anytime, even after you’ve released! Druids can also resurrect, although they can only use their ability every once in awhile and it’s instant and useable in combat. So they may be less inclined to resurrect someone who can walk back.
Soul Stone: A Warlock can soulstone you before your death, in which case you are given the option to either Resurrect or Release. If you use the soulstone then you’ll come back to life right where you died. If you use the Release button then you’ll have to walk back.
Self Resurrect: Shamans have the ability to resurrect themselves on death. As a Shaman, if you ability is useable, then simply select the Resurrect button when you died. If you don’t want to use it then just simply Release and walk back.
Q. What's the penalty for dying in World of Warcraft?
You'll never lose equipment as the result of dying, but you might experience a durability loss on your equipment of 10%. If you return to life by using a Spirit Healer NPC, you'll also incur resurrection sickness, which lowers all your stats by up to 75% for a period of up to 10 minutes (depending on your level) and the equipment durability penalty is upped to 25%.
That said, the biggest penalty you'll experience is the time it takes to return to your corpse. In most cases, the corpse run will take less than a few minutes, so there's little reason to talk to the Spirit Healer unless you die deep within hostile territory and know for a fact you won't escape, having re-incorporated, without a few more deaths.
Some enemies will add a debuff that makes you susceptible to their damage once you return to life. These enemies are usually bosses and extremely rare (the world dragons are one of the few enemies that do this) but it’s good to note that this is a possible penalty on death.
There is a penalty for too many deaths at a time. Should you find yourself dieing too much in a short period of time then you will have a “res timer”. It’s generally a minute or two before you can come back to life.
Q. Wait, is there any experience loss at death?
Nope! There is no experience loss in World of Warcraft. When you die you only take the durability loss to your equipment and nothing else.
Q. What's the special Night Elf death ability all about?
When Night Elves die, they have a special racial trait that allows them to become Wisps. Wisps move 50% faster than normal ghosts.
Q. Can corpses decay like in other MMORPGs?
After a week, your corpse will decay and you'll reincorporate at the nearest graveyard without any experience penalty. But who wants to wait a week to play?!
Q. Do players have to tag or bing at a nearby graveyard in order to release there when they die?
Nope, ghosts will auto-magically appear at the closest graveyard.
Q. I'm so good at this I never die, so I really want to see a corpse run video.