[RPG] Can a Wish produce a paradox

dnd-3.5espellswish

I have an idea for a cool chaotic BBEG. His/her ultimate goal is to completely destroy existence.

Could a Wish be cast in such a way as to create a paradox, allowing me to destroy existence? Or does the wish "altering reality" part of the spell indicate that it cannot produce a paradox?

For example, "I wish I was never born"?

Best Answer

It's important to differentiate between what a Wish spell can definitely do and what a wish spell can maybe do.

A Wish spell can reliably do any of the following:

  • duplicate other spells (with max spell level depending on whether it's a wizard/sorceror spell and whether the spell's school is prohibited to you)
  • undo otherwise permanent spells such as geas or insanity
  • create a nonmagical item worth no more than 25kgp
  • create a magic item, or improve an existing magic item
  • give a +1 inherent bonus to one ability score
  • remove any one kind of affliction from a group of creatures
  • revive the dead as with resurrection
  • teleport a creature to a location of your choice on any plane
  • force a re-roll of any 1 roll made in the last round

If you wish for something on that list, then you get exactly what you wished for.

If you wish for anything that is not on that list, then the result is entirely up to the GM, and the spell not only allows but encourages the GM to twist your wish into a result you didn't want.

If you are the GM, then you can allow an NPC to get anything they wish for, but you probably shouldn't. If you start letting NPCs wish for crazy world-altering effects, eventually the players are going to be capable of casting Wish and they'll expect to be able to mess up your world the same way.

If you need an NPC to be able to produce an effect that the players should never be able to produce, then make up some elaborate ritual, divine intervention, or other special circumstances that are needed to accomplish the effect, which will never be available to the players. Absolutely do not use a spell the PCs can cast, because that sets the expectation that they can use that same spell to achieve the same results.