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Why is my NPC Wizard cursed with immortality?

solamon77

Explorer
I am looking for some ideas to help spur some creativity. In my Starfinder game, the party has an NPC wizard traveling with them that is cursed with immortality. He's been alive since pre-gap old Golarion times. If he dies, he just resurrects the very next day as if nothing had happened. The rub is that he still ages. At one point he was a massively powerful archmage, but over the millennia he has had to use more and more of his once formidable power to keep his body from falling apart. I'm trying to think of a reason why he has this curse, but everything I come up with seems obvious and derivative. Anyone have any ideas or advice?

For what it's worth, the character is played in more of a comedic role than a tragic serious role. It's okay if the idea is just a little bit silly or funny (but not so silly that it's nothing more than a joke).
 

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He tried the Picture of Dorian Gray method of immortality but botched the magical painting - it continues to look as ageless as when it was first painted and he's the one with the ever-aging features. Of course, that means if he can find the picture and destroy it, his immortality will come to an end. But in the centuries since it was painted it's been moved and he no longer has any idea of its current whereabouts.

Johnathan
 



aco175

Legend
Maybe it is not a curse. Maybe he sought it out at first. Over time as he continued to age it has become more of a curse. The problem with making deals with devils, or djinn, or efreeti. He could mutter " Should have read the fine print." and "Get off my lawn."
 

MarkB

Legend
He botched a clone spell long ago, inadvertently creating a clone body with its own soul. In a separate accident, the clone was destroyed before he ever found out his mistake, and its soul was admitted to the afterlife under his name. Ever since then, whenever he dies, he is mis-identified as a duplicate entry and rejected from the afterlife.
 


I had a pair of immortal NPCs in a campaign once due to a poor choice of words.

Fighter: It looks like we'll die here
Dungeon collapses around them
Wizard: I wish we didn't have to. ... WAIT! NO!

They had an on again off again relationship in the background; mostly sticking together because everyone else they got close to died. The wizard, while powerful, had become a recluse and a drunk. Every so often, they would disappear to keep up "mortal" appearances.
 

Nytmare

David Jose
I am looking for some ideas to help spur some creativity. In my Starfinder game, the party has an NPC wizard traveling with them that is cursed with immortality. He's been alive since pre-gap old Golarion times. If he dies, he just resurrects the very next day as if nothing had happened. The rub is that he still ages. At one point he was a massively powerful archmage, but over the millennia he has had to use more and more of his once formidable power to keep his body from falling apart. I'm trying to think of a reason why he has this curse, but everything I come up with seems obvious and derivative. Anyone have any ideas or advice?

For what it's worth, the character is played in more of a comedic role than a tragic serious role. It's okay if the idea is just a little bit silly or funny (but not so silly that it's nothing more than a joke).

One of the things I really enjoyed about Thousand Year Old Vampire is the mechanic where, as your vampire ages, you have to decide which memories to hold onto and which ones to erase so that you can make room for new experiences. You could swipe that idea and have him not even remember himself.

You could take it a step further and go the Memento route where he has a patchwork of memories and clues hinting that there's an answer out there, and even though he doesn't remember any of it, it looks like maybe he's been leaving himself a breadcrumb trail of clues over the centuries.
 






DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
He doesn't even remember that he was actually originally an Archpriest of an Arcana deity and was so powerful that he was granted the prayer of True Resurrection by his god. And he was such an important cleric for this God of Magic that he was granted permanency on his own personal True Resurrection so that he would always be available as the god's mortal conduit.

But over the millenia, the needs of this pact for both archpriest and god slipped slowly away... and now they have both completely forgotten that they had this pact in the first place. And century after century, resurrection after resurrection, this archpriest of Magic eventually just morphed into a regular archmage. To break this "curse" the archmage needs to find or reconnect to his former God of Magic and have them both remember the pact, and agree to end it.
 

p_johnston

Explorer
So I'm gonna shamelessly steal the plot from The Misenchanted Sword for mu suggestion. The immortality, on purpose. The aging, total accident. It was really dark and he picked up the brass ring instead of the gold while casting his spell. Gold doesn't tarnish/corrode. Brass does.
 


Irlo

Villager
Time travel shennigans. Sometime in the far future, a young wizard meets a very old man (himself) who taught him a dangerous time-travel spell. The young wizard cast the spell, was thrown back thousands of years, and now, to prevent a reality-ripping paradox, the Universe must keep the cursed wizard alive long enough to teach his younger future self the dangerous time-travel spell.
 


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