I've got a character that is... in an interesting position, to say the least.
I asked one of my players to expand on the backstory of his character.
And boy did he.
The basic gist is that he ended up having an encounter where he befriended the Tien god Sun Wukong, Monkey god of Tricksters. His character had no idea who his new friend was, of course.
For those of you not in the know, Sun Wukong had been a minor spirit whom had snuck into Pharasma's Boneyard and erased his name from her records.
Here for some reason,Sun found himself in the Inner Sea Region, and is unable to return home for reasons he doesn't understand. He believes it's Pharasma's retribution for giving himself immortality (by erasing his name)
Sun leaves, visits the Boneyard again, and tears out the section with the player character's name on it, leaving a note taunting the goddess.
"I am borrowing this mortal.
I will return him when I get home.
Until then, you can just wait."
- A Being Smarter Than You
The player's idea is that his PC is effectively immortal, meaning that when reduced to his negative constitution score, he remains partly alive, and can recover if healing magic is applied to him. This being why the wizard the party had found him in the dungeons of, had kept him, believing him to be a key to immortality. I feel like that's a bit much, but I'm still trying to figure out what the effect of having your name ripped out of the book, but not erased would be.
The players I have are fairly responsible, but I'm not looking to overblow the whole thing here too much.
I'm wondering about detriments. Yeah there is the whole "You have no fate" thing, but as for the rest, this seems like something ripe for some curse-like side effects, especially for the people who had their names half-ripped out when his was pulled from the book. Something like this shouldn't be entirely just randomly beneficial.
I would not make the nemesis evil but a pain for the party until he/she reveals due to your PC's action of taking there name out of the book make him/her an outcast ruining thier life and wants revenge until thier name is returned.
Here's a twist: When/if the PC ever dies, have him reincarnate rather than "heal." His soul does not go to the Boneyard, but his physical form changes each time. Sort of the the DC Comics character, Resurrection Man.
I like Larry's idea, but I'd like to add this to it.
Ever played Planescape: Torment?
The main character, the Nameless One, was likewise unable to die permanently. However, death's price MUST be paid. So every time the Nameless One died then reawoke, someone else died in his place. The shadowed, empty echoes of those people who died instead of him gathered together, forming an entire FORTRESS out of their suffering and regrets. And in this fortress waited the Transcendent One, the conglomerate mind of all those souls AND a part of the Nameless One's original mind and essence, with all the memories of the Nameless's many past "lives" (Nameless, prior to the game, always had complete amnesia every time he died then re-awoke. For some unexplained reason, this stops at the beginning of the game and he starts being able to remember multiple lives.)
So. Every time this guy dies, he reincarnates... into the body of THE PERSON WHO DIED FOR HIM. Flip coin for gender after rolling on the Reincarnate chart. And somewhere out there, rather than a similarly-immortal rival, there is the immortal essence of all the people dying in his place, a very angry, very vengeful entity whose existence is tied to his own.
Inevitables would be all over this guy if they knew who he was. Trouble is, they don't.
Let him regenerate like a troll, but make it agonizingly slow, only at the rate of regular human healing. If he's ripped limb from limb, he can put himself back together, but only at an agonizing crawl over the course of days, not the troll's quickly scuttle back together and be good as new.
If he gets completely disintegrated, have him reform like a lich with a phylactery, with the phylactery being the page the monkey god ripped out of Pharasma's book. This means he's back in the hands of the monkey god, who will likely drop him off wherever a trickster would find amusing, not where the character would prefer.
As a final amusement, make it so that he's lost his name, or is at least unable to say it or communicate it so long as the monkey god holds it. He's gone to the temple of Pharasma and committed suicide by Inevitable before, but it doesn't stick, because his soul always goes back to the monkey god.
I love Torment, one of the premiere games of the ages.
Maruts are also an EXCELLENT idea. >=D
As for other people, well, this character is a paladin. So I was figuring that those who had their names partially ripped are stuck in a sort of spiritual limbo, like a kind of stagnation, unable to heal, grow, ect. Have the poor bastard feel guilty about that. *evil laughter*
And I'm liking the reincarnation idea. Alot. Good thing this player hasn't even HEARD of Planescape: Torment before gaming with me. I'm wondering if it's entirely appropriate to the feeling I'm trying to give this though. Probably just go with the Planescape thing, in that he loses his memory (or perhaps just parts) when he dies, and another takes his place.
And since everyone in the party already calls this guy by his nickname, stealing his name might be an excellent idea.
Currently what I am thinking is this; He comes back from death with no issue, depending on what killed him there may be permanent stat drains to like Constitution or Charisma, reflecting scars and such. He can regenerate (veeeeery slowly, he heals injuries in half the time others do.) which does not affect combat, so it's not fast healing.
He has lost his name; meaning that he has a first name, and a last name, he knows that he has them, but no matter what he tries, he cannot say them, write them down, any time he tries to bring them to mind, they remain frustratingly elusive. Seeing as his name is Darial Silvereye, he can bring to mind every component of them, he can think of silver, and realize it's part of his name, he can think of eyes, and realize they're part too, but once he tries to string them together... nada.
Whenever he dies, someone else dies an untimely death in his stead. 7 people across the world, who had their names surrounding his in the great register, are cursed, their names partially obliterated from his being cut out, causing each one of them to be stuck in a sort of metaphysical limbo, unable to grow, change, die or anything of that nature.
When they find out about him, the Inevitables are going to want to beat him into a paste with Maruts.
You might also rule that some Divine spells are problematic, most certainly resurrection/raise dead/reincarnation spells but possibly also spells like restoration. If the gods cannot find him to punish him they should also have problems finding him to imbue him with divine power. Most divine spells should be 'target-able' through the caster but those that involve his life force directly ... .
You could instead (or also) start doing the Princess Keli trick from the Discworld book Mort. As his name is no longer written, it can't be written to be interacting with other names, so other people who are not party members start forgetting him, ignoring him and generally feeling very uncomfortable around him as there mind tries to cope with the difference between What Is Written and what's actually going on (obviously, heroes are a bit special and more likely to cope, but you should probably throw a will save at them to remember him after a prolonged separation too).