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Cursed With Awesome / Video Games

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Being Cursed with Awesome in video games.

  • Lagging in online games can be an advantage, depending on how the game handles it. In some games, it makes the person lagging almost unpredictable in movement, letting them do roughly this
  • In the LucasArts Simulation Game Afterlife (1996), both Heaven and Hell have respective disasters in which flying animals fly around and defecate on Heavenly Rewards and Hellish Punishments, causing them to have a drastic increase in Bad Vibes. Of course, Hell is improved by Bad Vibes, so constantly deploying the Bats Out Of Hell 'disaster' is a positive. The game itself says, "[...] After all, the only thing worse than being in Hell is being in Hell while covered in bat droppings."
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  • Dion, the hero of Alphadia Genesis 2 was born as an "accursed" in his world due to being able to wield Black Energi. As he speaks with his dying father at the beginning of the game, he assures him he never once regretted being an "accursed" because no one in his family or village looked down on him or treated him differently. He's later able to harness the positive aspects of his powers throughout the game.
  • The corruptions in ADOM are supposed to be a mixed bag of advantages and disadvantages and most of them are actually quite nasty to have (even the advantages tending towards Blessed with Suck), but at least one is extremely useful to have even though it theoretically has a huge disadvantage. It makes you gradually degenerate into a caveman by periodically raising all your physical attributes and at the same time lowering your mental ones. This would theoretically make you a gibbering mindless mass of muscle, attribute-wise. However, there is a trainer in a town in the game who can help you increase any of your attributes. The higher the attribute is already, the harder it is to raise it, and doubly so once it hits its "natural maximum". But it's easy to re-train your mental attributes to their old level (or at least a reasonable level) each time they've fallen while letting your physical attributes go on increasing uninhibited because the corruption doesn't care how high they are already.
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  • Arknights: Some Operators who happen to be the Infected (a term for people who are suffering from oripathy, a disease caused by radioactive originium ores) have magical abilities called Originium Arts. However this ability has a flaw: Casting Originium Arts too often causes the oripathy disease to worsen, and will cause death to the user. Rhodes Island Organization attempts to prevent the corruption effect from using Originium Arts and find the cure for oripathy, in which the former appears to be a success.
  • Atelier Rorona has an example of a trait that's usually negative, but turns out to be positive in one specific case. There is a trait called "Narrow Range", which, if alchemized onto an item, reduces the amount of targets it will hit. You will usually try to avoid getting it onto your items. There is also an item called the Tera Bomb, which deals huge damage but has one flaw: its range is so big, it will also hit your own party, often resulting in a Total Party Wipe. Alchemizing a Tera Bomb with one level of Narrow Range will shrink the blast radius just enough to leave your side unharmed, while still being big enough to usually get all enemies. A Tera Bomb with Narrow Range can easily become a Game-Breaker if you add a few other positive traits that don't expand the range back again.
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  • In Atelier Iris 2: The Azoth of Destiny Gray is a dragon slayer cursed into the form of a dragon-man, and while a dragon killer becoming a dragon may be an uncomfortable idea, it has given him powers he would never have had as a human and since he is famous and his story is widely known, he is accepted everywhere so he doesn't even have the excuse of being an outcast after being turned into a monster. At the end of the game after he kills the one who cursed him, he says its better he didn't change back as he would lose all the dragon powers he gained and they will need all the power they can get to fight Palaxius.
  • The protagonist of Baldur's Gate I and II (and his brother) is "cursed" with supernatural powers due to being descended from an evil god. Depending on which character alignment the player picks at character creature, and on later choices during the game, the character's divine powers differ and grow. "Good" characters may view the ability to destroy the universe as a curse, evil ones probably don't.
  • Candies N Curses features a variety of curse items that can be chosen in treasure vaults. They do have negative effects when picked up, but they also grant massive benefits that often outweigh the downsides.
  • In Chrono Trigger, Frog is a human squire who was turned into, well, a frog by Magus. Although Frog initially regarded his new form as a curse, he later realized that being an anthropomorphic form has kickass side-effects, like increasing your strength, and making your tongue long and versatile enough to use it effectively in battle. He actually thanks Magus for the "curse" at one point. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain
  • When you face Scissorwoman in Clock Tower 3 you'll notice your auto-aim has been disabled for the fight. This is the opposite of a problem, since the game's normally mandatory auto-aim feature quite frankly sucks: it consists of rigidly aiming you at an enemy to charge your attack but doesn't track them or let you move, meaning you can't follow them when they casually walk out of the way. With Scissorwoman you can aim where she is going instead and unleash a fully charged attack when she walks into it, making her by far the easiest enemy in the entire game.
  • The player character of Dark Souls is under the effects of a curse that spontaneously brings the victim back from the dead, but saps his or her humanity every time it happens.
  • Mathias the Masterer, a premium general in Dawn of the Dragons, was such a huge example of The Slacker that the gods themselves were offended. So offended that they made him immortal and declared that his life would only end after he became The Ace at everything. As long as there is a single skill he has yet to master, he will never be able to die. Mathias considers it a curse because human minds just aren't able to handle living forever.
  • Death Stranding: DOOMS is a type of extra sensory perception certain people are born with, that makes them more closely connected to the world of the dead. Abilities vary depending on a so-called DOOMS level: people on level two, like Sam can sense the presence of BTs, people on higher levels can use the Beach to teleport (like Fragile) or even control BTs (like Higgs). The draws are: a tendency to develop various phobias, nightmares about the impending end of the world, commonly an aversion to touch and human interactions and in extreme cases suicidal tendencies and violent behavior towards others. The above mentioned teleport ability also draws some of the user's blood, so if someone teleports too much too often, they'll end up weakened and anemic.
  • Nero's arm in Devil May Cry 4 is demonic, which makes him go to great lengths to hide it from his fellow demon slayers. He's also not happy with the fact that he has a demonic arm, but in all honesty, it's the main reason why he's such a badass, since it bestows all kinds of asskicking powers. He finally lampshades it at the end of the game, admitting that it's pretty useful in spite of the grief it causes him. Then he ends up getting it torn off him by [[a semi-conscious Vergil]] in Devil May Cry 5. C'est la vie.
  • Discussed in Discworld Noir. Lewton isn't very happy about becoming a werewolf, but Carlotta (who infected him) says it's a great gift. It does turn out to be pretty useful.
  • In the good ending of Disgaea: Hour of Darkness, Seraph Lamington turns Flonne into a Fallen Angel as punishment for aiding the demons in attacking Celestia, meaning that she can stay with Laharl and Etna and has no other effects beyond a wardrobe change. Justified, since Flonne's "betrayal" had been part of Lamington's plan to bring about peace between the Netherword and Celestia. Calling it a punishment was merely a case of keeping up appearances.
  • Fenris of Dragon Age II. He had lyrium tattoos burned into his skin in an incredibly painful process, resulting in memory loss and chronic pain. The result of the tattooing gives him the ability to reach into a man's chest and effortlessly pull out his heart, as well as turning him into a plain badass and a killing machine when built right.
    • In the Downloadable Content "Legacy" it's revealed that Hawke's father Malcolm felt that his magic was a burden and that he hoped his children would not be mages. When at least one of his children did turn out to have magic he took great pains to teach them that with great power Comes Great Responsibility.
  • The main character in Dragon Quest VIII survived the curse placed on Trodain due to a curse placed on him as a baby, that had the side effect of making the cursed immune to any other curses. In an odd case of Gameplay and Story Integration, this even makes him immune to the status effect "Cursed".
  • In Drakengard, there is an idiosyncratic price a human in a pact with some eldritch creature has to pay for that creature's services. Caim and Leonard have obvious curses — they have lost their voice and sight respectively — but Seere loses his "time", making him immortal. While it is arguable that no one wants to live forever (especially as a six year old child), Seere has already lost anyone dear to him by this point, and it is very hard to say this is a real, immediate curse compared to the others. The hierarch Verdelet also isn't very cursed, since all he lost was his body hair; unfortunately, his condition isn't very awesome either since his dragon pact-partner happens to be petrified.
    • Seere's condition normally would be considered awesome until you take into account that there is a pedophile and an insane cannibalistic child killer in the party...
    • Drakengard II gets some of this, too. The knight generals all have pact partners. One lost her appeal, and is now repulsive in all aspects, making anyone who meets her immediately loathe her. One lost his sense of taste, and now spends much of his time gluttonously stuffing himself in a futile attempt to regain the pleasures of eating. And one lost... his masculinity. "Becoming incredibly effeminate" isn't exactly a huge curse compared to some of the others in the series, or even in the same game.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • Daggerfall has lycanthropy. Becoming a lycanthrope grants massive, permanent stat boosts, and disease immunity in exchange for uncontrollable bloodlusts every week or so. Thing is, "stat boosts" translate to "your character is a god" and "weekly bloodlusts" translate as "a piss-easy quest to get a ring that satisfies them." Or simply mauling some random, nameless NPC on the streets, which are infinite and literally spawn behind you every second. While laughing at the stings of non-silver-weapon-wielding guards. In fact... why even wait a week to do that?
    • Morrowind has the Corprus Disease, created by Dagoth Ur using the power of the heart of a dead god. The disease leaves sufferers as The Ageless with Ideal Illness Immunity, as well as dramatically increased Strength and Endurance, but also serves them with a nasty case of Body Horror and a severe loss of mental faculties. Naturally, the Nerevarine is inflicted with the disease as part of the main quest. After seeking out a wizard who is working on a cure, you'll have the negative aspects of the disease "cured," but the positive aspects of agelessness and immunity to disease remain. This is actually a required part of the prophecy to be the Nerevarine as well. As the prophecy puts it: "Neither blight nor age can harm him/The Curse-of-Flesh before him flies..." ("Curse-of-Flesh" is the prophetic name for Corprus.)
    • Likewise in Oblivion the player can be turned into a vampire by contracting the disease from fighting other vampires. There's a relatively lengthy sidequest to get a cure, but most players won't use the cure even after getting it because the free powers gained from vampirism greatly outweigh the disadvantages.
    • Skyrim has both vampirism and lycanthropy.
      • Vampirism turns the Player Character into a vampire with a number of stat bonuses and useful abilities. Vampires are immune to disease and poison, are harder to detect when sneaking, and spells from the Illusion school of magic become more powerful. You also gain a resistance to frost elemental damage. Finally, vampires have a number of special powers including night vision, Vampire's Seduction, and invisibility. Vampire Lords, added in Dawnguard, are even more powerful, possessing greater combat abilities and Blood Magic, as well as a special perk tree granting even more abilities. That said, vampires have a few notable weaknesses: Vampires can move around in sunlight, but are weakened significantly, fire damage does more damage than usual, and vampires need to feed on blood every once in a while, otherwise their weaknesses (not to mention their inhumanity) become more pronounced, although their powers become stronger too.
      • Lycanthropy allows the player disease immunity and the ability to become a 300-pound killing machine once per day. As with Vampire Lords, Werewolves gain a special perk tree in Dawnguard. Werewolves are absolutely brutal Lightning Bruisers with incredible speed, strength and durability, as well as the ability to heal by eating dead bodies. Werewolves can also use "howls" with special attributes including causing people to run in fear, detect living things from incredible distances, and call in wolves or other werewolves as allies. Unlike vampirism, you have complete control over when and where you enter your werewolf form. The only downside in gameplay terms is that you take more damage from enemies who use silver weapons (which is extremely rare) and you can no longer gain the minor boost effects from resting in a bed. The only reason Lycanthropy counts as a curse is because the Daedric Prince Hircine gets claim to your soul when you die; one Werewolf character, Kodlak, laments that his lycanthropy will prevent him from entering Sovngarde, the Nord afterlife. That said, other Werewolf characters are warmer to the idea of an afterlife of eternal hunting, although given who these characters are... (Also, on another note, another Daedric prince can lay claim to your soul during the main game as well. This throws the final downside of "determined afterlife" in question as well.) And, since the Dragonborn has the immortal soul of a dragon (or several, if you've been busy), rather than the standard mortal affair, it's possible that would never have been an issue in the first place.
    • Player characters in The Elder Scrolls Online are Soul Shriven — their bodies are alive, but their souls have been taken by Molag Bal. The most obvious effect of this being that they can't permanently die, in a setting that normally doesn't operate under Death Is Cheap. While this would border on And I Must Scream if they were a slave in Coldharbour as planned, since they managed to escape, this means that any time they die, they can come back at the nearest wayshrine, or, if they have a sufficiently powerful filled soul gem, use it up to kickstart their body and revive on the spot, in either case without much worse than some banged-up equipment and minor bruising. On top of this, their nature grants them access to Soul Magic, starting off with an innate ability to cast a version of Soul Trap that's better than the version normal protagonists from main-series games can learn. Everyone you meet who is aware of their state still treats them as dealing with a terrible burden, but these are some pretty awesome upsides.
    • From the lore, the story of Wheedle. Wheedle was the 13th child of the king of Valenwood, and so had little chance to claim any wealth or titles, so he sought wealth, power and a legacy that would be remembered for all time. By chance, Wheedle came upon a poor beggar and saved her from some angry townsfolk, only for her to reveal to his surprise that she was in fact Namira, the Daedric Prince of disease and revulsion. After he begged her for power and patronage for a whole month, she laughed at the irony of his situation, and gave him three "blessings": disease, pity, and disregard. He could take up any disease that had visible symptoms, so long as he had one. Horrified, Wheedle saw them as curses individually, and altogether horrible. Forced to turn away from his noble heritage, he became a beggar who wandered Tamriel, only to find that he became so pitiable, so tragic, that no-one could walk by his huddled and wretched form without being urged to throw a coin at his feet, and subsequently Wheedle never needed for money — in fact, he became ironically rather wealthy in his own right. He simultaneously became ignored by all, and the people said things around Wheedle that they wouldn't dare say with anyone else in earshot, and soon Wheedle also knew all the closest secrets of all of Tamriel's most powerful citizens. Wheedle has long since passed on from Nirn, but his name is legendary as the Beggar Prince, his exploits chronicled in books, and to this day it is oft said that if you want to know anything about anyone, you need only ask the beggars, as they know all the little secrets of the people and their lives. In a twisted way, Namira granted him everything he ever wanted: wealth, power and a legacy that would last for all time.
  • The Ghouls in Fallout were created by being subjected to a megadose of radiation, most commonly during The Great War, when most who couldn't get to a Vault were heavily exposed. The downside is that they look like the living dead (which leaves them subject to much discrimination), and their brains may eventually decay, causing them to go feral. The upside is that they are healed by radiation and have much longer lifespans than any other normal human, with pre-war ghouls still common over 280 years later. Almost all cases of ghoulification are against the subject's will though, since in addition to the aforementioned discrimination, exposure to massive doses of radiation usually leads to death.
    • Similarly, Super Mutants are also long-lived, with the added bonus of super strength and even increased intelligence in rare cases. In exchange however, you lose almost all memories of your past self, are stripped of free will, and it is all too likely that you will become far less intelligent than you were before being dipped into the FEV tank. Also worth noting is that all Super Mutants are sterile, and that all current Super Mutants (in the West Coast at least) will most likely die out eventually. All told, becoming a Super Mutant does have its advocates, since some people did volunteer for the process back in the original Fallout game. Marcus himself states that he prefers being a Super Mutant to being human because it leaves him less susceptible to petty emotions like "hatred" and "jealousy".
      • According to Marcus (if you choose to set him up with a hooker at the brothel in New Reno), Super Mutants are not actually sterile, "it just takes a few years for the juices to get flowing again after being dipped," though he might actually be referring to sex drive, rather than fertility. The explanation for why mutants are sterilenote  doesn't leave a lot of wiggle-room.
  • Terra in Final Fantasy VI. She considers her magic a curse because it distances herself from others and she fears she may never truly connect with other people. In the meantime, she's the only half-Esper in the world and as such is more or less a demi-god. In fact, until the Big Bad turns himself into a full-fledged god, Terra is arguably the strongest mage on the planet.note  There's also an issue with the fact that magic use by humans really isn't all that weird after the first quarter of the plot. They may not get their powers from the same place she does, but she's not the only human with magic powers, and her existence itself proves that Espers can feel love.
  • Vincent in Final Fantasy VII. He let the chick he was crushing on let her boyfriend turn her into a science project, and when he objected he got turned into one too. He considers it a fitting punishment. The experiments have made him immortal, so he gets to spend eternity in his late 20s, and allow him to transform into various demons that can kill normal enemies in a single hit. Dirge of Cerberus reveals that one of his monster forms is actually Chaos, a herald of the end of the world who is destined to kill every living being on the planet so Omega can consume the lifestream and go to another planet to re-seed life. While this lets Vincent actively stop the group working to end the world prematurely as part of a god gambit, it also means Vincent's going to live, and eventually, have to fulfill his purpose when the Planet's time comes up for real.
  • In Final Fantasy XV, Adagium aka the Immortal Accursed aka Ardyn Izunia aka Ardyn Lucis Caelum has absorbed so much Starscourge over his lifetime that he's effectively a Humanoid Daemon. He is a hated cursed individual rejected by his own bloodline and even by the gods themselves. However, his condition also comes with vast powers and immortality, making him effectively a Physical God.
  • Adelle of Final Fantasy Tactics A2, as well as a few other characters are Gifted, which grants them unique powers and nigh immortality, but not all can control it. Adelle initially agonizes over it after her village was wiped out by a plague that didn't affect her. It's also something that makes her desirable by the bad guys, with her consent or not. Many of the other Gifted are outcasts of one kind or another, either because people don't trust them or because of their own desire. Lennart for example states that he couldn't bear being friends with normal people that die within a normal lifespan anymore. She feels that she's been Blessed with Suck at first, but as she meets other Gifted and is given their power for her unique class (Heritor), she comes to realize it's not so bad after all — which allows her to release her own Gift — "the power of life, in all its forms and splendor". Which is just a free Regen spell.
  • In F-Zero X, machines with E-ranked grip aren't that bad... in fact, using one allows you to (ab)use several Game Breakers that will let you take massive shortcuts and gain ridiculous bursts of speed.
  • Sveta of Golden Sun: Dark Dawn feels this way about being an Adept who can read minds. And a beast(wo)man who can turn into a wolf in combat and start chucking bosses across the room. Then there's the princess of Morgal. And this gets lampshaded by the other player characters every time.
  • The Red Bull X racing prototype machines from Gran Turismo 5 and 6 fit this trope to a T. They literally outclass any and every car in any race where there's no restrictions put in effect. Specifically, these machines have astoundingly phenomenal stats in every category that a land-based vehicle that isn't powered by a jet engine can offer. Braking, top speed, acceleration, handling, you name it. Unfortunately, these same freakishly overpowered stats make them extraordinarily difficult to drive in A-Spec mode (AKA the mode where you directly drive the vehicle yourself), because the cars' monstrous reflexes make them way too easy to go off course and crash. Imagine driving these beasts in the Nürburgring in any configuration; unless you devote yourself to mastering the controls of these cars, it will most definitely take YEARS of trial-and-error to get used to the ludicrously phenomenal performance of these racing machines, let alone driving them in exceptionally difficult courses such as Monaco (Côte d'Azur in the GT universe) and the aforementioned Nürburgring. Interestingly, your AI driver in B-Spec Mode (AKA the mode where you play as racing team director to your AI buddies) has absolutely no difficulty in handling these cars, driving around any course (except probably Monaco thanks to the notoriously cramped configuration of the course) like they were nothing but toy cars.
  • The SPARTAN-II and SPARTAN-III super-soldiers in the Halo series are an interesting example. Each one was kidnapped or "recruited" at the age of six (or under), given Training from Hell, and given painful augmentations (which for the IIs, killed or crippled most of them), but became godly badasses in the process. That said, it's a greater than 50% chance of being dead or disabled by your twenties, plus more or less a lifetime of military service against Scary Dogmatic Aliens and La Résistance, even if you can punch through a tank with your bare hands. Not surprisingly, the people who helped create the Spartans, including both the IIs' project head and main trainer, often think about the ethical cost of what they did and sometimes wonder if it was really worth it. However, the Spartans themselves are mostly thankful for the experience and would willingly go through it again if they had a choice; of course, they've been pretty much been brainwashed since early childhood be soldiers.
    • When the process of augmentation improves decades later, allowing it to work for adults, there's no shortage of adult volunteers for the SPARTAN-IV program, so even in-universe most think it's awesome and worth the pain and modifications they undergo.
  • Jak and Daxter: After two years of torture and experimentation, Jak gains Dark Eco powers. The Baron and the Oracle warn that it will drive him insane and kill him horribly, people who watch him in action are terrified, and Count Veger in Jak 3 concludes that because of it Jak is an abomination who deserves only death. Nevertheless, it makes him immensely powerful and exactly what he was intended to be: the only thing capable of taking down the Metal Head leader.
  • Killer Instinct has Sabrewulf, a scientist turned werewolf who is desperately trying to look into a means of reverting the process. Except under the horrifying appearance and seemingly uncontrollable animal behavior, Sabrewulf is fully capable of self-control and his physical abilities have done nothing but improve. There is even an ending in the 2013 version that results in him admitting that it is actually awesome, giving up on a cure and keeping his current form AND his past intellect.
  • In Kingdom Hearts II, when you attempt to use one of the first three (four in the Final Mix/2.5 versions) Drive Forms Sora gets, you occasionally go into AntiForm instead. It comes with dramatically increased agility, the ability to perform absurdly fast and powerful combos that can range across the screen, and of course black, wispy tendrils from your outfit and your hair. The downside? The complete inability to heal while the form is active, receiving double damage, you're unable to kill bosses due to a lacking a combo finisher, and the inability to gain experience while in the form. Thus, while it's incredibly powerful, there are often very good reasons to want to avoid it.
    • On the other hand, after a certain point in the game (the Sora/Roxas fight scene), the number of times you've gone into Anti-Form is directly correlated to your chance of unlocking the most powerful Drive form when you use one of the other three/four Drive Formsnote .
  • Both Kain and Raziel from the Legacy of Kain series get this, but Raziel is doubly cursed with awesome — first for being a vampire, and second by being thrown into a maelstrom of acid water and turned into a vampire-hunting soul wraith. As a result he loses many of his vampiric weaknesses, such as his aversion to water, weakness in sunlight and need to drink blood, while still keeping his useful abilities, like super-strength and (limited) flight.
    • This is a reoccurring plot point in the series; whether or not vampirism is a curse or a blessing, whether they are parasites or gods, whether they are banished from god's grace or liberated from the wheel of fate. The true result of Raziel's cursed with awesome is that because of his curse, he is the one creature in existence with free will.
  • The Legend of Zelda has several examples:
    • In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, you wake a sleeping imp, who curses you for your impudence by halving your magic... although what he actually does is halve your magic cost, effectively doubling your magic. Thanks, buddy!
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, a similar imp "curses" Link with greater inventory room, the idea being that Link now has to carry more stuff, and does this three times.
    • Link's wolf form in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, which he turns into when he enters an area covered with Twilight, and it not only makes a few things a bit simpler, but also has the ability to warp. Although it's played a bit more straight later, when Zant actually does curse Link, locking him in wolf form. When you get the curse removed (and can now freely switch forms), Midna lampshades the fact that the curse has turned out to be quite useful. On the "cursed" side of things, there's the fact that people are frightened of Wolf Link. Besides the first time he goes to Ordon Village in that form though, no one actually tries to attack him or hinder him.
    • Also in Twilight Princess, you see a scene where the Sages attempt to execute Ganondorf, leading him to discover he has the Triforce of Power. Furthermore, the Sages seal him away by sending him to the Twilight Realm, where he ends up turning into a god-like mass of pure power.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Princess Zelda is cursed into being a ghost. This allows her to fly, turn into a fairy-orb and possess Phantoms, effectively making her physically stronger than she was when she was actually, well, physical.
  • Mario Party 3 gave players the Reverse Mushroom as a usable item. When used, it made the target go backwards instead of forwards with their dice roll. While this could be used to hurt a player's progress, it was mostly a Game-Breaker in practice. For one, the most common reason it was used was to move backwards to a Star Space that a player had either just missed, or because it reappeared right behind them when someone else bought a Star. Also, a player under the effects of a Reverse Mushroom could pick which direction they wanted to go if they reached any junction, even if that route could normally not be accessed without a Skeleton Key or a special event. Even the developers realized how broken the Reverse Mushroom was, since it never reappeared after Mario Party 3.
  • At the start of Mass Effect 2, Shepard dies and is resurrected, meaning s/he now has bulletproof skin, unbreakable bones, super-biotics (Sometimes without having them before), an almost unpoisonable digestive system, enhanced reflexes and numerous other modifications. Any potential moral, psychological or existential problems arising from this are glossed over entirely, leading to Shepard shrugging off nearly every remark relating to his/her death with a witty remark.
    Nassana Dantius: Shepard! But... you're dead!
    Shepard: I got better.
    • The Cursed part comes from who revived Shepard in the first place: Cerberus, an incredibly shady organization who happens to be the only one with the budget to bring what was left of Shepard back from the deadnote . Thus when Shepard wakes up, their hands are completely tied to doing whatever Cerberus tells them to, resulting in a huge rift between their former allies from the first game. It takes until the end of the sequel for Shepard to cut ties completely.
    • By Mass Effect 3, there are a number of implications that Shepard is less comfortable with all of this than s/he initially let on. There's a conversation at one point with EDI about transhumanism, during which Shepard shows discomfort at the idea that his/her cybernetics might make him/her a Transhuman. Then, in the attack on the Cerberus HQ, after seeing some videos of the Illusive Man talking about attempts to bring him/her back to life, Shepard reveals that s/he's had heavy doubts as to whether or not s/he is really the real Shepard, or just a VI who thinks that s/he's Shepard.
    • In Mass Effect 3, Joker invokes this trope when talking about human biotics facing discrimination for their powers. That said, some human biotics really do suffer from being Blessed with Suck, since in addition to suffering prejudice, they have very serious medical issues, at least before the better implants were developed.
  • In Mega Man Battle Network 3, the bug associated with the BusterMAX program is basically Power Incontinence; it causes MegaMan to use all of his uploaded chips in rapid fire at the beginning of the turn, aiming and timing be damned. The GameFAQs community held a contest to see who could produce the best character with that glitch as a stipulation.
    • There is another bug in Battle Network 4 where instead of firing of a powerful buster shot, you drop a rock cube onto the field in front of you. (This seems like Blessed with Suck, until you realize that chips like Poltergeist and the JunkMan Soul Synchro both like objects on the field. Also, if timed correctly, an enemy running into a rock cube as it is created takes 100 damage and destroys the rock cube. This is better than most chips in the game.)
  • In Metal Slug 3's second stage, getting attacked by a zombie turns you into a zetta slow zombie... but in return, you become immune to human attacks and you gain a special attack in which you vomit a powerful blast of blood.
  • When Samus defeats the Omega Pirate in Metroid Prime, it falls on her, "corrupting" her Power Suit into the Phazon Suit. The "beneficial side effects" (decreased damage and immunity to blue Phazon) from this corruption are all that the player ever experiences, and the only negative consequences show up in the sequel, in a bit of Retcon. The Phazon corruption of Samus herself in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, on the other hand, has both ups and downs, in that she can use it to enter the very powerful Hypermode, which uses health as ammo and can lead to total corruption if not managed well.
  • Talion from Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor has been banished from death, unable to pass on and reunite with his deceased family. Of course, this also means he's got a generous array of wraith powers, which he uses to wreak havoc on the Black Captains, the monstrous beings who killed his family, and the Always Chaotic Evil Uruk under their command. This trope is addressed somewhat when it is revealed later in the story that the Mouth of Sauron was trying to cast the "curse" upon himself but messed up the ritual. The wraith played up the "curse" story to manipulate Talion.
  • Monster Hunter 4 introduces the Frenzy Virus, which infects monsters and sets off their "rage mode" permanently. As for human hosts, the target is slowly infected over time, and when the infection meter maxes out, their natural health recovery stops. However, if the infectee does enough damage to monsters while infected, they not only recover, but also gain offensive boosts. In fact, the post-Frenzy boosts are vital to the usage of Chaotic Gore Magala weapons, which both have Critical Hit and "feeble hit" chances, and the post-Frenzy boost turns the feeble hit chance into additional crit chance for the duration of the buff; in other words, if you're using a CGM weapon, you want to get infected.
  • In Mortal Kombat, Shang Tsung was cursed to wither and die unless he consumed souls. Turns out that forcing an evil wizard to kill people is not that big of a drawback to him, and it comes with the side effect of allowing him to absorb the powers of those he vanquishes.
    • In Mortal Kombat 9, Kabal laments that he's a freak after getting his life saved by Kano's breathing apparatus. His compensation for having burns on his body and being forced to have a cool looking breathing apparatus on his face? Super speed. Being a "freak" doesn't seem so bad when you get that now, does it?
  • In NetHack, many "cursed" items can be helpful if applied right, for example a cursed genocide scroll will create monsters instead of kill them, allowing for many useful tactics, such as nurse dancing. (Nurses will raise your HP maximum if they attack you when you have no armor on, surround yourself with lots of nurses and... works best on no teleport levels, so the nurses can't flee.)
  • In Never Dead the protagonist is "cursed" with immortality and can regrow the rest of his body from his head if given a few minutes. Though it can end up becoming a legitimate curse, as he can end up becoming a digested pile of ooze that, while still sentient, is incapable of regenerating and has him stuck in that form forever. Lampshaded by Yahtzee in his Zero Punctuation review.
    Yahtzee: Bryce is also immortal having been cursed by the King of the Demon 500 years ago when the King of the Demons wasn't clear on what the word cursed means.
  • In Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer the Knight-Captain is afflicted by a curse that requires him/her to periodically consume spirits or die. Whether this is Cursed With Awesome or Blessed with Suck depends on how you approach it. An evil character who sees it as a blessing and eats spirits willy-nilly will find that the more souls they eat the faster they die. However, if the KC approaches the curse with practical restraint (pushing one into good-aligned) can get most of the benefits with few of the side effects.
  • In Odin Sphere, the people of a fallen kingdom were transformed into anthropomorphic rabbits. The upside is that they get ageless immortality, assuming Armageddon is averted. With the world reborn, two of the main characters, who become these creatures, wished to live a normal life as humans after several thousand years, and so succeeded in the end.
  • Lampshade Hanging in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door: In order to receive certain (required) abilities, Mario must open locked chests containing demons that dramatically "curse" him with the ability to turn sideways, fold into a paper airplane, etc. Voluntarily, and with no downsides. By the fourth one, Mario can see where things are headed and tellsnote  the chest to just shut up and curse him already. The chest expresses disappointment at not being able to perform his big scene. Mario then relents and lets him do so, after which the chest goes through the motions and then, as an aside, thanks Mario for letting him do his thing. These demons are actually the legendary heroes who sealed away the Big Bad the first time, only to fall victim to said Big Bad's own curse and become demons locked in chests, fated to curse whatever gullible sap they can trick into letting them out. They use a bit of Loophole Abuse to get away with giving curses that are actually beneficial.
  • In Planescape: Torment, Ignus was punished for torching a district of Sigil by being made into a living portal to the Plane of Fire. Turns out that he thoroughly enjoys being able to burn himself (and everything around himself) to his heart's content.
  • In Pokémon Gold and Silver (and later versions), as an extremely rare occurrence (a 1 in 21,845 chance per battle), Pokémon may be infected with Pokérus. This highly infectious disease cannot be cured, though the affected Pokémon will heal naturally in a few days. What does this horrible disease do, you ask? They make your Pokémon grow twice as fast — not in experience levels, but in "effort values," which affect their stats on the next level-up — even after the disease goes away. It has no negative effects, although the game doesn't mention its positive effects, nor are you told this rare anti-illness exists unless your team contracts it. For this reason, players do well to make sure the disease keeps spreading among their Pokémon.
    • On the subject of Pokémon, the hero in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon never seems to find being turned into a Pokémon really awesome (seeing all the cool powers and stuff they have). However, the hero also rarely ever mentions a desire to go back to human form.
  • In the PC version of PowerSlave (aka Exhumed in Europe), mummies sometimes launch a spell which turns the player into one of them for a few seconds — and he can launch a very powerful attack meanwhile.
  • The Sand Wraith form in Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. The Mask of the Sand Wraith displaces its user in time a few hours, allowing them to meet themselves in the past to avert some unpleasant fate. The mask comes off when the "past" version dies, so you have to end up killing yourself. In gameplay terms, while playing as the Sand Wraith, your health is slowly depleted. While the may sound bad at first, it only depletes to about a quarter of your original health bar. This is at least enough to survive one solid hit from pretty much anything in the game (during the time you use the form). Add on to that the fact that your sand tanks regenerate at a steady rate, and any competent player using this form becomes borderline unkillable because you can just rewind time to heal the tiny bit of health you have.
  • Alex Mercer from Prototype begins the game furious and vengeful concerning his condition which lets him run up walls, glide, pick up cars, become immune to falling damage and be generally nigh-invincible. On the other hand, he can also eat people to regenerate faster and gain their knowledge and memories, it also comes with the unpleasant side effect of his victims still existing inside his head...
    • Well, at least James Heller didn't complain about his condition.
  • Corporal Matthew Kane of Quake IV is captured and painfully transformed into a cyborg by the Strogg about halfway through the game, but he is rescued by his squadmates before the mind-controlling chip inserted into his brain during the "Stroggification" process can be activated. You can see the whole disturbing process here. Despite having most of his organic body crudely replaced with cybernetic parts, his increased strength, speed, and resistance to Strogg technology such as teleporters (which are instantly fatal to regular humans, as demonstrated when one soldier attempts to go through and it rips him in two) are huge bonuses — especially as his aforementioned resistance to teleporters and the like render him the only member of the Rhino Squad capable of destroying the enemy.
  • In Devil Summoner 2: Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon, its revealed that Gouto's role as The Mentor is meant to be a punishment for an unknown crime he committed. Because forcing him to help his descendents become true Summoners and protect the world from evil is such a bad thing. That said, he'd probably be happier if it didn't come with the obligatory requisite of being forced to assume the shape of a cat. Also, the "punishment" actually is to live through his protegés' lives... until he inevitably sees them die.
  • When characters from the Resident Evil series get infected with any one of the numerous biological agents seen throughout the series (e.g.: T-Virus, Las Plagas, Uroboros, etc.), you wouldn't be wrong to assume that they're done for. Countless innocent people and animals became Tragic Monsters as a result, with no hopes of turning back. All the heroes can do is give them a Mercy Kill. On the other hand, very few characters have been infected, yet gained benefits with no foreseeable drawbacks (so far):
    • Sherry Birkin was infected with the G-Virus by her mutated father Dr. William Birkin during the events of Resident Evil 2. Had Claire not administered the vaccine to Sherry, she would've shared her father's grotesque fate. However, the vaccine didn't eradicate the virus. Instead, it ended up non-lethally assimilating with her body. By the time Sherry returned years later as a young woman in Resident Evil 6, she acquired an impressive Healing Factor for her troubles. Case in point, a huge piece of metal that got lodged in her back was pulled out and the resulting wound closed up in a few seconds. The repairing of damaged cells is one of the abilities of the Gs. Thankfully, she didn't grow an extra giant eyeball on her body, which is another G-Virus trait.
    • Jake Muller first appears in Resident Evil 6 and is the illegitimate son of long time Big Bad Albert Wesker. In turn, he was granted superhuman abilities, due to his father's self-induced viral injection of the Prototype Virus, prior to Jake being conceived. Like father, like son, Jake pulls off feats of Super Strength with his melee attacks, causing massive damage to his targets. It's to the point that Jake was able to go toe-to-toe with the Ustanak towards the end of his campaign. While Wesker had to perform routine injections to maintain this power, Jake doesn't need to do that, at all.
    • Ethan Winters in Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was infected with the Mold moments after stepping foot onto the Bakers' property. The Mold grants those that it infects with Super Toughness and a Healing Factor, as the latter was the reason why Zoe bothered stapling back Ethan's arm after it was chopped off by Mia. Luckily for Ethan, he had only been infected recently, unlike the Bakers who had been that way for three years. As a result, though she could make him hallucinate from time to time, Eveline wasn't able to take control of Ethan's actions, preventing him from becoming a brainwashed lunatic like nearly everyone else imprisoned at the Bakers'. All in all, he manages to survive this entire ordeal and with Eveline's death, never has to worry about being brainwashed. Had Ethan not been infected from the start, the sheer amount of abuse he was able to withstand, let alone that first encounter with a crazed Mia would've definitely killed him.
  • In Retro Game Challenge, the opening of the game features Game Master Arino doing the incredibly evil act of *gasp* turning the player into a kid and sending them back in time to The '80s. Anyone who really was a kid in the 1980s thought that this was awesome for the nostalgia. Anyone who wasn't a kid in the 1980s thought this was awesome just cause it is.
  • The hero in the platformer game Demon Returns in Game Center CX 2/Retro Game Challenge 2 seems to be a form of this: he's turned into a purple imp-like demon by the Big Bad of the game, but all it does is to give him sharp claws from which he can fire small tornadoes when sufficiently powered up and the ability to use any enemies he runs across as his personal form of transportation. It does seem to hinder him in that he needs to consume apples constantly to stay alive, though.
  • In Rogue Legacy, some traits that may sound detrimental to your heroes are either harmless or wind up being beneficial. For instance, a hero with A.D.H.D. will move much faster than normal, while a hero with peripheral arterial disease won't trigger spike traps due to having "no foot pulse"note .
  • Kubikiri Basara, first appearing in Samurai Shodown 3, is a ghost. In the living world, Basara can teleport through shadow, transform into a shadowy bat, and control his bladed disc with his mind. He wants his "accursed" existence to end so he can stay with his beloved Kagaribi in the afterlife. In his SS5 ending, he recovers a repressed memory: he, not Zankuro, had killed Kagaribi.
  • The Sims 2 expansions have several life states that a Sim can become, most with several different nifty traits, but only Knowledge Sims want to become them. Indeed, most infected Sims want nothing more than to be cured of their weirdness. While justified in some cases (becoming a werewolf or a zombie involves a drastic personality shift), many states have such cool side effects that it's hard to understand why you'd want to get rid of the "affliction":
    • Vampires' needs don't decay at night, nor by day if they're asleep in a coffin. They also don't age.
    • Plant Sims need only water, sunshine, and "love" (social interaction) to live — they never get tired, commune with plants, and can asexually produce young with all their own skills and talents.
    • Witches and warlocks can perform Functional Magic with many useful effects.
    • Aside from nonhuman Sims, the University expansion has the hidden "Grilled Cheese" Aspiration, granted by having a horrible accident with the ReNuYu reward. The bad news: your Sim has just deep-fried their brain. The good news: their new obsession with grilled cheese sandwiches makes their wants predictable and easy to fulfill, they have access to the recipe no matter what their cooking level is, and with the Free Time expansion, they can summon sandwiches out of thin air for a snack whenever they want at the cost of some energy, eliminating the need for cooking altogether.
  • The Sims 3 also has life states falling under this category. Unlike the previous game, becoming an "occult" no longer is considered a curse in and of itself, but some life states do balance certain advantages and disadvantages, so they at least count as this trope.
    • Vampires can only regenerate their "thirst" need (equivalent to hunger for normal sims) by consuming plasma, which can either come from "drinking" from other sims, drinking plasma juice, or eating plasma fruit (Late Night only). They are also weakened by spending too long in sunlight (which drains their powers and causes their thirst meter to drain faster), unless they have the Immortal lifetime happiness reward. On the upside, they get a learning boost during nighttime hours, can run faster than ordinary humans, have a very long lifespannote , and have a set of social interactions that can play with the minds of other sims a great deal.
    • Werewolves in Supernatural are said to be cursed (with the life state spread via a "Cursed Bite"), but the benefits of the life state generally outweigh the problems. The problems being that the wolf form isn't pretty, they're forced into said wolf form every full moon, the wolf form has several antisocial interactions by default, it's impossible to design a wolf-form sim's wardrobe, and the wolf form (but not the human form) is slow to recover Energy through sleep. The benefits: werewolves have an adult lifespan 50% longer than an ordinary human Sim, an increased chance to win fights in wolf form (and, unless they're somehow locked out of the form — say, due to pregnancy — they'll transform into the wolf form to fight), a slower Energy drain and a +30 positive moodlet while in the wolf form, and the ability to hunt for gems, metals, and bugs on public property (and also their own property). Transforming into the wolf form can also cure certain magical afflictions, such as the Tragic Clown and even permanent zombification — and with few exceptions, they can transform freely between forms. Going both ways in this regard is that a Sim can't get pregnant in wolf form, so any WooHoo while the female partner is in wolf form will never result in pregnancy. On the one hand, it's an excellent contraceptive; on the other hand, it becomes a problem if your Sim is trying for a baby... or is already pregnant, as pregnancy locks a Sim into human form. In gameplay terms it's generally better to stay in the wolf form unless your Sim is trying to get some sleep, trying to do something the game won't let you do in wolf form, or you want to leave the Sim on autopilot for a while.
    • Sims with the Unlucky or Loser trait are cursed with awesome in a much more literal way. While they occasionally receive negative moodlets and are generally less successful than others sims, they are also incapable of dying by any means other than old age: the Grim Reaper will refuse to collect them. If a sim with one of those traits can find their way around ageing (and several methods exist) will never die. But will be more likely to fail at most things they do because of the effects of the trait.
  • From the NetHack mod, Slash'EM, there's the Lycanthrope character class. Lycanthropes are permanently cursed with randomly turning into a wolf. They take large penalties to how much they can carry in a game where you need to be Crazy-Prepared. They also have greatly increased hunger, requiring them to constantly be on the lookout for more food. Despite that.. It's AWESOME. The food penalty is countered by insane regeneration and being a werewolf is just plain fun. Compared to other classes agonizing choices over how to fight, being able to maul the face off anyone you meet is straight up cathartic.
  • And based on Slash'EM, there is Slash'EM Extended that has enemy werecockatrices. A player infected by them may randomly turn into a cockatrice and turn enemies to stone with melee attacks.
  • Prior to becoming friends with Sonic the Hedgehog, this was how Blaze the Cat felt about her pyrokinesis, as it brought her nothing but loneliness and misery.
    Blaze: I am the guardian of the Sol Emeralds... It is a fate that forces me to live with my curse, my flames... Because of my powers, I have always been alone... It's also why I must do this alone! It is my responsibility!
  • By the end of South Park: The Fractured but Whole we learn the origins of the New Kid's incredibly powerful (and versatile) farts: They are a side-effect of the medication that their parents sneak into their food to lessen the effects of their real super-power: the ability to quickly gain online followers.
  • Female lead Reimi Saionji in Star Ocean: The Last Hope was genetically enhanced as part of a project to enable humans to live on the nuclear-wasteland surface of Earth. She has a superhuman immune system and healing ability which even allows her to recover from having most of her body turned to stone. She feels guilty about it because as a little girl, she survived severe radiation poisoning when some of her friends didn't. This was aggravated by the fact that she still felt the effects of the radiation poisoning as her body adjusted and she was then forced to listen to her friends parents rant about how she should have died with them.
  • Ashton Anchors, in Star Ocean: The Second Story/Evolution gets possessed by a two-headed dragon (Thanks to the party), its heads being fused onto his back. Outside of making him look like a freak, it's not nearly as terrible as it sounds, as the dragons are actually rather friendly (Mostly showing hostility towards one another, which is a source of irritation for him), and while despite being capable of taking complete control of him, only choose to do so on one occasion where they had something important to say. On the plus side, they help him in battle by using symbology and breathing fire and ice at foes with his strongest killer move.
    • When presented with a method of removing the dragons in an optional quest, he ultimately chooses to not go through with it as it would kill them, having developed a soft spot for them in the meantime. However, he's still stuck with them in the sequel game that takes place two years later, in which they've also learned some new attacks, such as a lunging bite that makes their host do a comical faceplant.
  • Story of the Blanks: Cutie marks are treated like a curse in Sunny Town, even though they just marked awareness of your special talent. The thing you were awesome at. However, with the release of episode "The Cutie Pox", it makes their horrific crime even worse as it comes off as a case of either ignorance or irrational paranoia on their part.
  • Terraria: The Clothier, after you save him, still can use Shadowflame to defend himself.
  • The Grineer from Warframe are an entire race of human clones programmed to be fanatically loyal to the Twin Queens, which, thanks to damaged DNA sources, get worse and worse with each successive generation. Occasionally, the production line will churn out a Grineer with more severe defects than most; in some cases (such as Clem and the members of the Steel Meridian) these defects include free will, compassion, and a serious capacity for kicking ass.
  • In Warhammer 40,000: Rites of War, most of the Eldar relics you find have unreservedly beneficial effects, except for one, the Armor of Gorhu, which makes it impossible for the unit wearing the armor to gain any experience, and causes every adjacent friendly unit to lose two points of leadership, but also makes the wearer unkillable. But since the armor can only be found in the very last scenario of the campaign mode, by which time all your units are at maximum experience anyway, the inability to gain experience doesn't really matter, leaving only the leadership penalty, which is a nuisance, but nowhere near enough of one to negate the fact that the unit wearing the Armor is unkillable.
  • Most of Wario's transformations fall into this category. Being on fire isn't that bad if it makes you invincible and allows you to burn away blocks blocking your path.
  • in The Witcher franchise, some children, usually in some sort of way kidnapped or otherwise forced into this position, are subject to the "trial of grasses", an extremely painful and lethal process which causes mutations, and kills 7 of 10 boys that undergo the process, as well as extensive training, after which they become Witchers. Good effects include: badass monster killing skills, superhuman attributes, extended lifespan, Magic use. Bad effects include: becoming sterile, possible complications from the trial such as when the group uses the trial of grasses to change Uma back into Avallach, where he suffers permanent brain damage, and on the receiving end of a LOT of discrimination.
  • The Hero of Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap gets cursed into the form of a Lizard Man, and gains other forms along the way. Getting turned into various animal humanoids is a rather small price to pay for Fire Breath, immunity to heat, Ceiling Cling powers, Flight, Underwater Breathing, and Super Strength.
  • At the start of the game, the Curse of the Worgen from World of Warcraft transforms the player into a bloodthirsty and mindless werewolf. Shortly after, they receive a partial cure which gives them back their human mind, though it's specifically noted to be temporary, with the risk of reverting to the werewolf mind at any moment still present. But then you get a better cure with the Tal'doren ritual, which permanently "rebalances" the player, allowing the player to not only keep their mind, but also to shift between human and wolf forms at will. Lore-wise, maintaining the human mind requires significant willpower and self-control, but for the most part, Gilnean worgen are just humans with the power to transform into stronger and faster werewolves. Even after it's proven they will retain control and the ability to transform between human and worgen, some NPCs still treat becoming worgen as a Fate Worse than Death.
    • There are quite a few encounter specific debuffs that actually make the target more powerful and are often key to defeating the boss. Vaelstrasz the Corrupt, for example, gives all players in the raid "Essence of the Red", which increases the players' mana/energy/rage/runic/focus regeneration by huge amounts.
    • Undead with their own will (Forsaken and Death Knights) can be considered cursed, but don't have any real drawback gameplay wise while enjoying some of the perks of their new existence, much like the Worgen.
      • The game's original version of the Forsaken played this very straight. Permanent immunity to sleep, charm, and fear, no need to breathe, and the ability to speak the Alliance's common tongue, making you an obvious liaison for combined faction operations. In exchange, you're vulnerable to holy and undead-affecting spells, have a widespread and powerful enemy NPC faction specializing in exactly that, and Alliance players can kill you pretty easily if they want to. ...As it turned out, they wanted to, and the feeling was mutual, so the races came out more PvP balanced.
    • Northrend also brought us the backstory about the "Curse of Flesh", a curse created by the Old Gods which mutated the Titans' stone and metal servants into fleshy organic beings to make them easier to manipulate. The result: the evolution of humanity, dwarves and gnomes. Unlike their earthen predecessors, being organic has helped these mortals think and feel beyond the Titans' rigid, machine-like blueprints for the universe, and the struggle with dealing with their newfound weaknesses gave rise to strengths that made them better equipped to fight the Old Gods and other threats to Azeroth.
    • There's also a series of weapons that can "curse" you with extra Critical Hit chance.
    • Several enemies hit you with debuffs that allow you to deal extra damage. Often (but not always) they also deal damage to you in addition, basically invoking Cast from Hit Points.


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