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Are there any magic items or spells that extend the natural life of a creature (meaning the age of the creature, and not preventing death from a wound or injury) or that grants immortality in the 5e books published by Wizards of the Coast.

I'm looking only for options available to PCs through character creation or options available to the DM via canon books.

What is not a valid answer is:

  • Reincarnation
  • A lich's phylactery
  • Raise dead
  • Resurrections of any kind
  • Spare the dying

or similar effects.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Since NPCs can have any property PCs have I don't know why it matter? — because NPCs can have more. Your game world is not limited by the PHB. \$\endgroup\$ – enkryptor Aug 21 at 17:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ Related (on the DM side): How can I make my BBEG immortal short of making them a Lich or Vampire? and (for undead options) What other undead paths are there for immortality? \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Aug 21 at 17:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for selecting my answer! However feel free to give it some time, we usually recommend waiting 24 hours or so to let a good group of answers come in before selecting an answer to encourage more people to contribute. However, you are free to choose whichever answer you want, and you can switch your selection at any time. Thanks again! :) \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Aug 21 at 18:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ Can you explain why reincarnation doesn't count? It's certainly the easiest and lowest-level way to obtain functional immortality, but if there's some reason it isn't acceptable that might bar other solutions like clone that aren't on your list but function similarly. \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Aug 21 at 18:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Possible duplicate of What official PC mechanics are there that directly counteract death? \$\endgroup\$ – Pierre Cathé Aug 22 at 7:36
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(Heavily adapted from my answer here)

High level spells

The easiest way to achieve effective immortality is to use spells. A wizard has access to several of them once they get higher level spell slots.

  • Sequester will allow the PC to put themselves into a state of suspended animation during which they will not age. This will allow them to span any amount of time without aging (though it will mean that they are out of action for that time).
  • Clone will provide the PC with fresh young bodies to use once their older body dies. With enough of these, they can last an infinite amount of time. See this Q&A for more discussion on this.
  • Wish obviously wish can do anything, including granting immortality. A wish for immortality is unlikely to be granted in a straightforward manner though and would be a good opportunity for the DM to implement some sort of curse or other downside on the PC as a result of their wish.
  • Imprisonment would work in any of its flavors since the targeted creature does not age while under its effects.

  • True polymorph can allow you to extend your life by changing into a creature with a longer lifespan than you. Some good potential options: devils are immortal (MM), hags are "virtually immortal", and ancient dragons are listed as living for "over a thousand years".

If your PC isn't a spellcaster you can always try to find them assistance from someone or something capable of casting the spells. For example, Djinni can cast wish as well as some magic items.

Magic items

(Tomb of Annihilation spoilers)

The Ring of Winter listed in Tomb of Annihilation will prevent aging.


Non-spell/item options

High level Druid or Paladin

At 18th level, druids get the Timeless Body feature:

[T]he primal magic that you wield causes you to age more slowly. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year.

Combine this with a long-lived race like the elf or warforged and you easily have thousands of years of life.

An Oath of Ancients paladin at level 15 gets:

Additionally, you suffer none of the drawbacks of old age, and you can’t be aged magically.

Which seems likely to be able to prevent death from old age as well if your DM interprets death from old age as a drawback.

Warlocks with the Undying Patron also have a similar ability. (thanks @Himitsu_no_Yami)

Epic Boon

A DM can grant the Epic Boon of Immortality to give a PC immortality. This assumes that they have a 20th level PC.

Long-lived races

Races like elves and warforged can live for an incredible amount of time (unknown even in the case of the warforged).

The maximum lifespan of the warforged remains a mystery; so far, warforged have shown no signs of deterioration due to age. (Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron)

Starting as one of these races can get you a good way towards immortality without anything else, and will enhance the effects of many of the options above.

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    \$\begingroup\$ True Polymorph has the advantage that when you start getting too old for your transformed body, you can dispel it, and return to your body-that-was (perhaps following up with another True Polymorph afterwards). Imprison, while highly effective at the immortality is not so effective at letting you take advantage of it. Magic Jar is great as a combo spell for letting you be out and about and functional while imprison keeps your base body from aging. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Aug 21 at 18:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm partial to true polymorph to a lich form myself. The monster lich is too high of CR but if you don't get legendary actions (as PCs should not) it should be a reasonable TP target. \$\endgroup\$ – Joshua Aug 22 at 3:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ As a note: high level monks gain 'timeless body' which is similar to the oath of the ancients effect, except that in the monk's case it explicitly states that it doesn't prevent dying of old age. \$\endgroup\$ – Phlarx Aug 22 at 19:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Can't someone true polymorph into their younger selves? Also wish is notable as it allows casting clone without the associated components \$\endgroup\$ – OganM Aug 22 at 21:06
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Let's get the most obvious out of the way first. Wish.

State your wish to the GM as precisely as possible. The GM has great latitude in ruling what occurs in such an instance; the greater the wish, the greater the likelihood that something goes wrong.

"I wish to be immortal." would be the simplest way. A somewhat better way would be "I wish to cease aging (or be unable to die) until such time as I, of my own free will and under no duress, want this effect to end". That gives the DM fewer ways to monkey's paw your wish and gives you an out.


Class Features

First up we have the Druid.

At 18th level you get the Timeless Body feature which states

Starting at 18th level, the primal magic that you wield causes you to age more slowly. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year.

which effectively increases your lifespan by 10 times.

Then there's the Monk class.

You get Timeless Body at 15th level but it's different than the Druid's. It states

At 15th level, your ki sustains you so that you suffer none of the frailty of old age, and you can’t be aged magically. You can still die of old age, however. In addition, you no longer need food or water."

while it doesn't explicitly grant immortality it might still help.

Paladin's Oath of the Ancients has a similar effect to the Monk.

At level 15 you get the Undying Sentinel feature which states

Additionally, you suffer none of the drawbacks of old age, and you can’t be aged magically.

which is similar to the Monk's feature

Warlocks with the Undying patron get a similar benefit to the Druid at level 10.

This is the Undying Nature feature which states

In addition, you age at a slower rate. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year, and you are immune to being magically aged."

Wild Magic Sorcerers can age themselves down with wild magic.

Though it's a bit unpredictable and you may get older instead. On the Wild Magic table it says

35–36: Roll a d10. Your age changes by a number of years equal to the roll. If the roll is odd, you get younger (minimum 1 year old). If the roll is even, you get older."


Magic Items

The Ring of Winter has an effect called Frozen Time which states.

As long as you wear the ring, you don’t age naturally. This effect is similar to suspended animation, in that your age doesn’t catch up to you once the ring is removed.

There's also the Potion of Longevity. There's a bit of risk with this one if you drink it more than once and you'll never be able to drink it more than 9 times but here's what it says.

When you drink this potion, your physical age is reduced by 1d6 + 6 years, to a minimum of 13 years. Each time you subsequently drink a potion of longevity, there is a 10 percent cumulative chance that you instead age by 1d6 +6 years.


Epic Boons

Boon of Immortality

You stop aging. You are immune to any effect that would age you, and you can’t die from old age.

of course this requires level 20 but it is an option.


Spells (other than wish)

Disclaimer: This was partly taken from Rubiksmoose's answer but I wanted to add details about how it could work.

The Clone spell would let you create a new body for yourself and, as seen here, would allow you to resurrect yourself into your clone body after dying of any means including old age. By default you need to be a Wizard with access to 8th level spells to do it and even then, it's extremely costly as you need a diamond worth at least 1,000 gold pieces as well as a chunk of your flesh. You also would need a vessel worth at least 2,000 gold pieces that has a sealable lid and is large enough to hold a Medium creature such as, for example, an expensive coffin. There's also the fact that it must remain undisturbed for the whole time until you die. There are a few potential methods you could use to get around parts of this.

  • The part where it must remain undisturbed is fairly simple to get around. You're a high level wizard with 8th level spells at your fingertips. Cast Demiplane and have the clone grow in there the only catch being you need a way to get out of the Demiplane.
  • This is kind of cheating since I did say "other than wish" but what I meant by that was other a stressful wish. You can bypass the material component requirements and the requirement of being a Wizard by using Wish to replicate the effects of Clone. Now for this to work I would assume you'd either still need some sort of vessel or the Wish spell would create it but that's beside the point. The only downside to this is that you do need a 9th level spell slot AND you need to be able to use the Wish spell. Or you could always have a magic item or something that can grant you wishes in which case pretty much anybody could use this to become effectively immortal.
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  • \$\begingroup\$ "Under no duress" - Oh, I can think of a lot of ways the DM can exploit that one... "You can't end the effect while under duress? Well, let's manufacture some duress and see how your character deals with it." \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Aug 22 at 5:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kevin well at that point the DM should've just said no to the wish \$\endgroup\$ – Himitsu_no_Yami Aug 22 at 5:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ Where's the fun in that? People have been wishing to be immortal, and then regretting it, for thousands of years of fiction, and the Wish spell explicitly notes that DMs can and should twist the effects. The player is asking for it (which, in all fairness, may well be a good thing - you could build an entire campaign out of reversing a bad wish!). \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Aug 22 at 6:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ "the only catch being you need a way to get out of the Demiplane" This is trivial, just stash a spellbook with Gate or Plane shift and the material components and you're good to go \$\endgroup\$ – Pierre Cathé Aug 22 at 8:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PierreCathé True enough. You could even use Banishment and just banish yourself from the demiplane. \$\endgroup\$ – Himitsu_no_Yami Aug 22 at 16:02
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Mostly taken from my answer there

Magic Jar - 6th level wizard spell

This spell will not extend your body's life, but it does extend your soul's.

Casting Magic Jar allows your soul to leave your body without dying (and steal other people's bodies) Your soul survives even if your original body dies.

If the possessed body dies near the container, you get a saving throw to not die. If the container is destroyed and you aren't close to your original body (or it died), you die.

This means that when your body starts failing due to age, you can cast Magic Jar to take possession of a younger one, wnd when that one becomes too old, just rinse and repeat. The catch is that you also have to make sure your magic jar is well protected, as you can die if it is destroyed and your original body is gone.

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