I have a player who wants to bring back a loved NPC to life. I'll Spare you the cheesiness of the story, I told him that there is no known way to do that and that it could be a very dark thing to do.

He is determined and through the campaign he came to me with a solution: he would summon an Ally Spirit (spirit of man), which he thinks is the NPC's soul, and bind it into the NPC's real body, which is brain dead and kept in life support, with the Inhabitation power and influence the outcome so it results in a Flesh form.

Flesh form: A flesh form results when the vessel rolls 2+ net hits. A perfect combination between spirit and vessel, the flesh form retains all of the vessel’s abilities, knowledge, and skills (except Conjuring skills), and its appearance is virtually indistinguishable from the original vessel. A flesh form gains the following powers: Aura Masking (p. 194), Dual-Natured (p. 395, SR5), Immunity to Normal Weapons (p. 397, SR5), and Realistic Form (p. 198).

What do they mean by abilities?

I think they mean like Awakened status and/or other powers like Critter powers or Bioware and Cyberware but it doesn't specifically say "Attributes". Does it has the spirit's or the vessel's? In the later case, the attributes might be at least somewhat enhanced by the spirit.

Can the Ally Astrally project?


1 Answer 1


In short:

  • A Flesh Form keeps all the attributes, skills, knowledges, Awakened status, Cyberware, Bioware, etc, of the physical body. The Spirit Ally merely becomes a puppet master.
  • The Spirit Ally cannot astrally project while in Flesh Form.

The explanation:

The Inhabitation power is explained in pages 195 and 196 of Street Grimoire, but, as with many things in SR5, it's not very clear and you have to infer many things through careful reading.

There can be three outcomes for an Inhabitation:

  • True Form: [...] The vessel is irrevocably destroyed or consumed during the process. [...] The true form bears no resemblance to the vessel and retains only the knowledge, skills, and attributes of the spirit alone.

  • Hybrid Form: [...] Both vessel and spirit become a single, dual-natured entity (p. 395, SR5). The hybrid form’s physical attributes are enhanced by the spirit’s Force. The spirit retains all of the host’s natural abilities but only some of its memories and none of its skills (the spirit retains its own skills, however). [...] Unlike Possession spirits, hybrid forms can operate a direct neural interface, and the vessel’s cyberware (if any) continues to function for the spirit.

  • Flesh form: [...] A perfect combination between spirit and vessel, the flesh form retains all of the vessel’s abilities, knowledge, and skills (except Conjuring skills), and its appearance is virtually indistinguishable from the original vessel.

The three outcomes follows a basic progression that can be summed as:

  • Fail for the True Form: nothing coming from the body is kept, only the Spirit's stats are kept,
  • Moderate Success for the Hybrid Form: some stats from the body are kept, the Spirit alters some of it and fills in the rest;
  • Complete Success for the Flesh Form: everything from the body is kept, the Spirit doesn't influence the stats at all.

Thus, when Inhabitation results in Flesh Form, you basically keep the character sheet of the PC or NPC as is, only the personality changes since a new spirit is inhabiting the body.

In your example, if the summoned Ally Spirit isn't the spirit of the loved NPC; which would be highly unlikely unless you as GM allow it; the Ally Spirit will remember the love between the NPC and the PC, but is in no way forced to follow up on it. It would be a memory with no feelings associated to it, akin to watching a movie.

As for Astral Projection, the description of the Inhabitation power explicitly forbids it:

The spirit cannot be separated with Banishing, and the spirit cannot voluntarily leave the vessel. An inhabiting spirit is only disrupted when its vessel is either destroyed or killed from Physical damage overflow (p. 209, SR5).

Since Astral Projection means sending one's spirit/mind/consciousness away from the body, a Spirit inhabiting a physical body cannot astral project. They can still see in the astral plane in Flesh Form thanks to gaining the Dual-Natured powers.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you @Sava, I thought as much , but can de Vessel be augmented independatly? I mean if if you want your ally to have more powers it can be done by a ritual but if the PC makes the Ally workout or have augmentative surgery can it be done? how could it affect the Ally Spirit? \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew
    Oct 29, 2018 at 22:11
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ The Ally Spirit itself wouldn't be affected. Every changes done would only affect the vessel. And since it's a fully functional being, you can augment it by making it workout, undergo surgery to add any sort of -ware, etc... \$\endgroup\$
    – Sava
    Oct 29, 2018 at 22:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ Much apreciated @Sava! great answer! \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew
    Oct 29, 2018 at 22:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ I pretty much followed what you suggested and my player was content with augmenting his ally spirit with -wares and such but he now wants to improve its skills and since the inhaviting spirit has all of the vessel skills and atributes he then asks if he can also train his ally, at first I said no because that would fall within the purview of the Ritual of Change but reading the rule speaks specificlly about increesing the force of the spirit.which in a normal spirit would increse its skills and atributes but an inhabting spirit would not be like that skills would be in the vessel so, \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew
    Feb 6, 2019 at 17:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ how would that work?, the inhabiting spirit would use any skill at its force in ranks but with the vessels's atributes? does the vessels skills must be improved independantly from the spirits' or are thay the same? \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew
    Feb 6, 2019 at 17:31

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