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Twiceborn is an Enchantment 4 death 22 ritual that allows the caster a second life as undead if they die. If the mage dies it will return in the province where the ritual was cast as a Wight Mage chassis though the specific chassis depends on what it was when it died. So long as the mage returns, any global enchantments they are holding are preserved. This spell also has the effect of forcefully relocating the caster's home province (where they receive their +1 morale bonus) to where the spell was cast.

Twiceborn costs 5deathgem per point of the caster's size. It would cost 5deathgem for a size-1 Svartalf to be Twiceborn, whereas a size-4 Angakok would pay 20deathgem. Undead, demons, inanimates, and plants cannot cast or be affected the Twiceborn spell. It is possible to Twiceborn a small chassis for 5 or 10deathgem, Transform it into a larger chassis, and kill it for a correspondingly larger Wight Mage form. In particular, late-age Vaettiheim's Vaetti Gygjas can undergo this process for a potential supercombatant chassis at (with luck) minimal cost, although there are too many Transformation results for this to be reliable. Twiceborn can be copied for the unique cost-as-a-function-of-(res)size effect, but it also resets the caster's home province, and that effect cannot be separated out.

Twiceborn looks at the resource size (ressize), not the actual listed size (size). In the vast majority of cases, ressize is equal to size. However, if a unit has large wings on a humanoid body or is mounted they will usually have a ressize lower than their size. This means that the Larger bless effect will not increase the Twiceborn cost, as that only increases size and not ressize. However, this mechanic also applies when checking for the new target chassis: for example, a High Seraph has a size of 3 but a ressize of 2, and since a ressize-2 unit with natural flying becomes a Caelian Wight Mage, the High Seraph transforms as intended; on the other hand, a Faery Queen has a size of 3 and a ressize of 3, so she transforms into a standard Wight Mage despite having the same size and the same natural flying ability (including wings) as the High Seraph. This can also lead to strangeness in other situations, such as Asphodel: for this nation, ressize-2 units Twiceborn into Carrion Ladys (female satyrs) while ressize-3 units Twiceborn into Carrion Centaurs; but, because all of Asphodel's Centaurs are size 3/ressize 2, they Twiceborn into Carrion Ladies (satyrs), whereas the nation's Minotaur units are size 3/ressize 3 and thus Twiceborn into Carrion Centaurs.


Conditions of Resurrection

  • The effect will fail if the unit's owner does not control the province where the ritual was cast. Note that there is no indication given of the Twiceborned unit's original province (except for the morale bonus gained from being in their home province). If the ritual was cast in a fort, the inside of the fort must be controlled in order for the mage to return. Thus a mage will return if the fort is being sieged by enemies, but not if the ritual caster lost the fort and is besieging it in an attempt to take it back. This also remains true if a Twiceborned mage is Charmed, except that its new owner will likely have no way to determine where the ritual was originally cast.
  • The effect will fail if the mage's living form was killed by any Soul Slaying effect.
    • This can found on spells like Soul Slay or items like an Ethereal Crossbow
    • If the mage fails to resist the Soul Slaying effect but somehow survives the attack, the affliction will remain and still prevent the Twiceborn effect from activating even if they die to a different attack
  • Twiceborn takes priority over Life after Death, meaning that a Twiceborned mage will not turn into a Soulless who keeps fighting. Instead they disappear from the battle "like usual" and become a Wight Mage in their home province.


If cast by a pretender, they will return as a Wight like any normal commander when their normal form dies. When the Wight dies, they die normally and must be recalled. Once they have been recalled as normal they will be their original form again. The exception to this are trinity pretenders: two parts of the trinity will not revert to the original form if recalled, but the third will.

Twiceborn Stealing

Any mercenary commander who casts the Twiceborn spell will become permanently owned by the player. This is due to the spell's effect of changing the caster's home province to wherever the spell was cast.1) This also means that the player is free to take any items or gems they might have. As it does not update the home provinces of troops under their command, the troops will still refuse to be moved to another commander, but they will not leave when their contract would have ended.

Immortal Home

When Twiceborn is cast by a commander with Immortality, it changes the location they revive from to the province where Twiceborn was cast. This, like in the case with mercenaries, is because Twiceborn changes the caster's home province. However, because Immortality is checked before Twiceborn, Immortal units cannot become Wight Mages unless their Immortality is bypassed.

Chance for Death Boost

When a Twiceborned commander returns as a Wight Mage, it has a chance to gain an additional level in the Death magic path. Practical testing of approximately 20200 casts of Twiceborn indicate this happens 20% of the time,2) but that it cannot boost the mage beyond death 44.3)

Twiceborn Chassis

Notable features of Wight Mages include:

  • They all have no upkeep.
  • They are undead units, giving them spirit sight and very high resistance to poison and cold damage as well as the poor amphibian ability. This also makes them vulnerable to anti-elite-undead items and magic, such as a Holy Scourge and Dust to Dust.
  • Chill aura 3.
  • 5-7 natural protection, 18 morale, high strength, moderately high attack and defense skill and 22 map move. Except size, their stats and abilities are unrelated to their previous living form (these stats may vary slightly based on different chassis sizes or certain special chassis types).
  • Significantly more hitpoints than most living chassis of equivalent size.

Note that, even though they are undead, Wight Mages do have a maximum age—500 years (2,500 years for the two Titans), modified by +50%/death 11—and are not immune to old age penalties. In extreme circumstances, a very old mage may Twiceborn into a Wight Mage with worse stats than the base chassis would indicate.

For units with #secondshape, the Wight Mage form considers only the ressize of the #firstshape instead of whatever shape the mage is currently in. Other forms of shapeshifting (e.g. #shapechange or #<terrain>shape), however, will indeed consider the unit's current form (i.e. the form the unit is in when it dies), which can result in strange behaviour, e.g. a Black Hunter is ressize 2 while mounted, which would produce a size-2 Wight Mage, but the Hunter Spider shape (which uses #homeshape) is ressize 6, so a Twiceborned ressize-2 Black Hunter will be in a ressize-6 shape (Hunter Spider) when Twiceborn goes off, resulting in a size-6 Titan Wight Mage, instead. Similarly, a Twiceborned Nahualli (which uses #shapechange) who dies in human shape (size 2/ressize 2) returns as a standard Wight Mage, but one who dies in Turkey shape (size 2/ressize 2, flying) returns as a Caelian Wight Mage. Note that #secondtmpshape activating in battle results in the second (temporary) unit becoming the Wight Mage and then disappearing once the battle ends, as is intended for #secondtmpshape. Ergo, Twiceborned units with #secondtmpshape must die without triggering #secondtmpshape in order to produce a permanent Wight Mage; for example, a Twiceborned Serpent Cataphract who dies in battle will become a Serpent, which will then become a Wight Mage, which will subsequently disappear after the battle, but a Serpent Cataphract who dies on the world map (e.g. by drowning) will return as a permanent Wight Mage.

A table of Twiceborn forms is included below, organized by the order in which the checks are performed: a unit that dies and triggers Twiceborn will proceed through each check in this order, transforming into the first Wight chassis for which it qualifies.4) 'Male' in the Twiceborn column simply refers to the absence of the female tag; this includes animals which are not obviously male or female, as almost all animals lack the female tag. Exact requirements for each Twiceborn result courtesy of Loggy's notes. Note that national requirements will usually apply for units that share additional irrelevant nations, e.g. Centaurs are shared between EA & MA Pangaea and Asphodel, but will still Twiceborn into Carrion Ladys because they are a ressize-2 unit recruitable by Asphodel.

Check# Twiceborned Chassis Wight Sprite Wight Name Wight Chassis
1. Ressize-6 Aboleths only (Mind Lords, the First Spawn, the hero Auluudh - Aboleth). Necrodai Size 6, gains full amphibiousness, unlike their living forms. Does not work on Grandmothers or Polypal Queens, despite their having the "aboleth" tag.
2. Ressize-3+ Aboleths only (Aboleths, Abodai, Giboleths, Gibodai). Necrodai Size 4, gains full amphibiousness, unlike their living forms.
3. Shinuyama's Bakemono Sorcerers only. Wight Mage Size 3, retains mountain survival. Because Bakemono Sorcerers have holy 11, and magic paths are retained through transformations, the unit will also retain sacred.
4. Ressize-3+ Ur & Uruk recruitable units only, such as Enkidu Hunters and Ensi. Wight Shaman Size 3. Does not work on Enkidus that cannot be recruited by Ur & Uruk (e.g. Enkidu Slaves), nor on summoned units (e.g. Ugallu), but does work on Kulullus, Mushussu Chariots (ressize 3), and Mushussus (despite being ressize 5).
5. Ressize-4+ Ashdod recruitable units only, such as Zamzummites. Wight Murmurer Size 4, retains wasteland survival. Larger units (e.g. size-5 Adons) will not retain their larger size.
6. Ressize-4 EA & MA Agartha recruitable units only, such as Oracles (e.g. Oracle of the Dead) and Ancient Lords. Wight Oracle Size 4, retains(/gains) full amphibiousness; gains reanimator priest (unit must still have at least holy 11 to reanimate); loses siege bonus and cold blooded. Does not work on units that cannot be recruited by EA & MA Agartha (e.g. Unused Ancient Ones), but does work on Troglodyte Slaves (which do not normally have amphibious).
7. Asphodel's Panic Apostates and the hero Panicratos - Apostatic Warrior only. Carrion Lord Size 3, retains forest survival and recuperation; gains pierce resistant, magic being, inanimate, and sacred.
8. Ressize-2 Asphodel recruitable units only, such as Black Dryads and Dryad Hags (most Harpys are actually size 2/ressize 1). Carrion Lady Size 2, retains forest survival and recuperation; gains pierce resistant, magic being, inanimate, and sacred.
9. Ressize-3 Asphodel recruitable units only, such as Minotaurs. (Most Centaurs are actually size 3/ressize 2.) Carrion Centaur Size 3, retains forest survival and recuperation; gains pierce resistant, magic being, inanimate, and sacred.
10. Ressize-2 units with both cold blooded and swamp survival. Wight Mage Size 2, loses cold blooded and swamp survival. Does not work on Sobeks (ressize 3), except for Atun Shar - Sobek Sauromancer.
11. Ressize-6 female units. Wight Mage Size 5, gains fear and morale 30; loses female.
12. Ressize-6 male units. Wight Mage Size 6, gains fear and morale 30.
13. Ressize-4+ amphibious or aquatic units. Wight Mage Size 4, retains/gains full amphibiousness (losing poor amphibian/aquatic). Includes Telkhines, Ryujin, Sea Trolls, and all other ressize-4+ amphibious and aquatic units, in addition to Angakoks, Bacabob, and other large Atlantians.
14. Ressize-2 flying units, including many Caelians, like Seraphines; some other nationals, like Huacas; and some non-winged units, like Valkyries. Wight Mage Size 2, loses flying.
15. Repeat check 11 for ressize-5 female units (same outcome).
16. Repeat check 12 for ressize-5 male units (same outcome).
17. Ressize-4 female units. Wight Hag Size 4, retains female; gains mountain survival, forest survival, snow move, and fortune teller.
18. Ressize-4 male units. Wight Mage Size 4, gains forest survival and snow move.
19. Ressize-2+ units. Wight Mage Size 2. Gets a free quarterstaff.
20. Ressize-1 nonflying male units. Wight Mage Size 1, gains forest survival and stealthy.
21. Ressize-1 nonflying female units. Wight Hag Size 1, retains female; gains forest survival and stealthy.
22. Ressize-1 flying units, such as Xibalban Zotz (who are predominantly size 2/ressize 1). Wight Mage Size 2, gains forest survival and stealthy; loses flying.
Internally, being a mercenary is denoted by having the special home province ID of -2. Taking permanent control of mercenaries by changing this when casting Twiceborn is quite possibly an oversight on Illwinter's part.
More info can be found at misc under "Twiceborn shape logic."
twiceborn.txt · Last modified: 2023/10/14 14:48 by thagsimm0ns