View Full Version : So my character dies everyday...

the clumsy bard
2013-03-01, 10:39 AM
Let me preface this by saying I saw something on television and thought it was interesting and then thought... how can I make this into a playable character in a roleplaying game?

The idea being that the character has been cursed to die everyday, but arise the following day (rinse repeat as needed).

In any case what I have come here for are cool roleplaying ideas for who cursed the character, why they are cursed, how they were cursed etc...

I keep thinking about it myself, but keep coming up with very cliched backgrounds for it. (read = writer's block)

2013-03-01, 10:54 AM
So an Awakened Groundhog.

You could go for a Ghost-in-the-Machine type of thing.

The character appears to be a recording/spirit/hologram/whatever except that the recording changes, has memory and passes the Turing test. The character is a recording except that it has become sentient if only you could get it out of the 'box'. Solving this problem gives you a background plot arc which the players get to resolve, quite how they do this is moot they just have to get creative.

the clumsy bard
2013-03-01, 10:58 AM
Sorry should have been more clear that this is more for a fantasy oriented game.

Kol Korran
2013-03-01, 11:01 AM
a few ideas that might fit different types of systems:
1) the character is somewhat of a rogue trickster, mostly towards the love interests s/he are in touch with. they can't quite stay loyal to them. s/he keeps breaking their hearts, over and over again- gaining their trust and then (mostly likely unintentionally) cheating on them or some other ways making them suffer for their love, due to their inability to fully commit to them.

one such lover however grew angry, very angry, and somehow cursed the disloyal lover, to forever die each day, as s/he makes her feel (dying each day), till they prove to find a true love, and hold true to it, loyal to it, in all honest intentions.

another idea is that the character was a part of some sort of a special ops team, high risk, high rewards. only at one point the character failed her team, and all but 1/2 members perished (due to the character's cowardliness? unprofessional attitude? addiction? some other vice?) the surviving one/s cursed the character to die each day, as to always remember her fault, and experience the deaths of her team.

is the death gentle? or is it painful/ violent? what happens if the character dies before the alloted time? what if it gets violently injured (as they say in the medical profession- "incompatible with life") does the body just awakes the next day, or is it reformed somehow? (say if it got burnt?)

There was once an episode of Twilight Zone where there was a prisoner on death row, who kept havign the same recurrign dream, where he went through the entire process of the trial, incarcaration, until he got electrocuted and died, only to then return to the start of the dream. someone in the dream asked him "but if you get back and nothing happens, is this such a bad thing?" to which the prisoner snapped "you have any idea how painful it is to be electrocuted and die, over and over again?" for the curse to be effective, dying should be an undesired experience.

an interesting twist could be that the character never knows what kills her, but the world "adjusts" in order to do so- an accident, a quick disease and more. you can roleplay her as paranoid, not knowing where it will come from next. but this might be quite hard on the GM to arrange.

2013-03-01, 11:11 AM
He got caught up the middle of a squabble between two gods or spirits, one of whom wanted him dead, and the other wanted him alive. One said "may you awake each sunrise alive and well", and the other "may you die, and never live to see another day pass". The result was kind of a logic-mixup, where the conflicting commands make him die at sunset and reanimate at sunrise. The two have long since forgotten him and moved on to other things, never caring to lift their commands.

Dead in the night, alive at daytime. He can usually hide this by pretending to be sleeping.

2013-03-01, 11:14 AM
I played a campaign when the BBEG had this curse.

Hed been a LG wizard-king whod tried to make himself immortal without becoming a lich etc.

Unfortunately the wording of the spell was flawed and the spell resulted in him dying violently and painfully every night (the DMs description was fairly horrific I remember it involved black blood flowing from his eye sockets) only to resurrect the next morning.

A few centuries of this had lead to him going insane and trying to destroy reality to escape his curse.

Unfortunately the campaign fell apart before we ever worked out how to stop him although it was great fun having a BBEG who you could just not kill. The best we managed was collapsing a castle on him after he died, but that just delayed him for a few days/weeks until he magically dug himself out.

2013-03-01, 12:13 PM
Warlock that made pretty bad deal with devil, accepting to join blood war for exchange for his powers?

2013-03-01, 12:16 PM
so you wanna be like kenny from southpark...

the curse was made when the family wanted to resurrect a demon, but they never got to the fine print that said that where it would resurrect, so it did inside of a newborn baby, the baby dies everyday, but also can age or become stronger, it is just the curse that makes him have bad-luck (a penalty to all your dice-rolls -1 or -3 if you feeling gung-ho), and die in a very gory way everytime (with no control or save rolls to avoid it, the DM can find creative ways to kill you every week, like watching that stupid movie of Final Destiny, your friends would also have a vague memory of your demise), the demon finds annoying the fact of not being able to move so it recreates and resurrects the body every night, the result would be your character waking up in his/her bed every day with the memory of how you died, but partly erased, you can be any race or alignment, but due to the demon being inside of your body, any detect evil would see you as evil, and some demons/succubus/underworld and fallen beings would try to talk to your character and offer their services, like an imp salesman or a succubus potion vendor, and some spells that outright kill your character would be rendered ineffective due to the demon rule of being killed once per day, and it is a pre-scripted death so any other death effects would be null and void, how does that sounds?

2013-03-01, 12:40 PM
Stole fire, cursed by gods?

2013-03-01, 12:47 PM
Some cool character concepts, especially funny since I just re-re-re-watched **** and friends and mysterion rises :D

Another, if obvious idea, is the phoenix archetype within a day cycle. Essentially you start as a baby, or youngling type version of whatever race you are (so no human or anything, PF gnome would be perfect though) and then age to the point you die at the end of the day if you haven't already, then you are reborn again the next day...etc. Might be cool to have 3 sets of stats for each time period of the day. Would make picking a class a lot harder but the roleplay could be quite fun.

Kind of reminds me of Lost, with time paradoxes. Kind of like how Jacob dies then sort of comes back as a kid.

2013-03-01, 12:53 PM
For those who grew up before South Park, see Captain Scarlett.

For Pathfinder this would make an interesting Oracle Curse. For a Druid add in Reincarnation.

The trick is to figure out how this works. Ironically, what you have is an immortal character. Character death is meaningless (basis of fact, not emotional content). For game play what then becomes the risk? Is failing an adventure plot enough? Capture by the BBEG might be more dangerous than normal. What happens if someone who doesn't know about the Curse buries you? Cremates you? Do you become a permanent carrier of a fatal disease? Can you never become undead?

2013-03-01, 01:08 PM

The trick is to figure out how this works. Ironically, what you have is an immortal character. Character death is meaningless (basis of fact, not emotional content). For game play what then becomes the risk? Is failing an adventure plot enough? Capture by the BBEG might be more dangerous than normal. What happens if someone who doesn't know about the Curse buries you? Cremates you? Do you become a permanent carrier of a fatal disease? Can you never become undead?

I think that's the interesting point. You can add in penalties and play the game a bit differently for once with different consequences.

The advantages are much more obvious, so I'll focus on the potential disadvantages.

-dead for a period like sleep...you'd be unable to help the party if they got ambushed, and you could easily be messed with/stolen from during this dead time.
-resurrecting in damaging place...for instance in flames (phoenix) in a pit of fire (devil/demon) which could destroy any equipment you don't specially protect
-resurrecting in an unfortunate place...perhaps you wake up in some far off underground maze or have to barter your way out with its denizens (gold..equipment)
-stats which I already mentioned, having a set of young, normal, and elderly stats would be hard to base a character around (MAD).
-someone else above mentioned bad luck (-1 to a -3 on all dice rolls) because of the nature of the curse

2013-03-01, 02:19 PM
Starting from the assumption that this game features death for PCs as a normal possibility, and that this curse is not meant as a loophole to let your PC return without paying the normal costs (gold, XP, favros, whatever) the setting imposes for coming back to life.

Idea 1: Cursed by the stars. Each time a certain alignment in the heavens occurs, your PC is wrenched out of his body and goes to some other place (Valhalla, Hades, the Far realm in D&D, etc.) where he engages in some endless task like battle never ending, rolling stones up hills, harvesting an endless field, etc. When the alignment ends (or another alignment occurs) the gate reverses and you awake in your body with troubling memories of the other place instead of dreams. Working with the DM you can tweak this set up so that the "death" simply replaces normal sleep, lasting for the usual length of an extended rest but meaning your PC can not be woken up at night... but also is immune to effects like poison gas or mind control while "dead"... and simply wakes up with the rest of the party. Or it could be an event that shifts around, lasting only a few rounds or several hours, and occuring at times that maybe your PC can chart with astronomy skils, or maybe just happen by DM fiat if you have a good trust relationship. As an aside, nothing says the subjective time on the other side has to match the time on this side. If your PC "dies" by other means, well, your soul is not in your body to rip out, and you are normal dead unless the usual means to raise you are employed. How did this happen? Maybe you were born under a rare planar gateway that warped your ties to the mortal world. Maybe you (or an ancestor) made a bargain with a Cthonic horror and you are working off the debt, Maybe you stumbled across a portal to the underworld and ate or drank something, and when you came back out part of you was trapped, etc.

Option 2: Endless decay. Your soul is contaminated with energy hostile to living flesh. after 24 hours any body you are in dies and is no longer able to contain an animating force (can't be raised or made undead). Your soul is able to reshape even the simplest creature into the form it imposes on flesh (just screw conservation of mass here), but must enter a new body quickly or float away. This means you have to find a host like a rat or squirrel or something each day to jump into. You can jump into dead bodies, if they are reasonably fresh. Does your PC prefer or oppose jumping into the bodies of former sentient beings? Do you save the bodies of your foes as replacements for your own? Can you evict someone from their body? How does your need shape your morality? If you die from something other than time running out, the body has been too damaged to hold you anymore, and the party has to provide a new host and perform the usual means of raising the dead to draw your soul into it. Perhaps you angered a god of death and your soul now burns endlessly, but your links to the land of the living have not been fully cut. When you are without body, you are in eternal torment. Perhaps you were a bystander or caster in a magical casting gone terribly wrong, and now you are trapped on the edge of life and death. Maybe you are of a cursed family/cult that blasphemed against a god of life or nature and now your soul is cursed to never be welcome in their realm.

I can come up with more, but not knowing how you see this cycle makes it tricky to have an idea that I know would fit.

Jay R
2013-03-01, 05:32 PM
A character who fears the pain of death wishes, "I wish to live forever."