So it happens even to the best of characters. A poorly made decision, a bad roll of the dice, Or a Crappy GM or players ruin it..
BUt have you ever had a glorious death for your PC?
A Resolute guard in an attempt to protect their friends like Ganner Rhysode, holding off the Vong so his companions could escape in Star Wars, or Nux, who ascended to Valhalla, Shiny and Chrome, by flipping the Rig to block the canyon in mad Max: Fury Road.
Or Saint Ollanius Pius, who stood before the might of Horus, empowered by Chaos Truely Undivided, to protect the Emperor of Mankind, despite having absolutely no chance. (and anybody dare mentions any terminator armored space marines I will have the Ordo Hereticus and Commissariat on you so fast you'd think they dropped podded in on a cyclonic torpedo!)
I felt kinda like sharing a couple of mine. A good character death is wonderful, more fulfilling then almost anything, though they have to have some point.
The last character i had this happen to was in d 5e D&D game, ST gave us the option to pick backgrounds he enhanced for running in game, i had chosen folk hero.. But in rolling my stats, i only had 1 stat higher then a 10.. And it came out as an 18. Having planned a rogue i put my 18 in dext, and meandered his stats into their other slots (The ST had offered to let me reroll, but i had plans..)
Now, Alunda Kensi was not your normal thief. he wasnt a sneaky backstabbing wall climbing Ninja.. He was a merchant. a Gem trader/cutter. And not very good at that. he made his living going to the kingdoms corrupt guards and buying the goods they had stolen for rather cheap.. How he kept his profit was by palming gold and jewels while making the deal, having gotten them drunk while talking business to start. The kingdom was throughly and completely corrupt in its rulership, and a rebellion started up. On what was to be his last trip to the guards, the rebels attacked, and in the chaos he simply tried to sneak out, dagger out incase of attack, not that it would do much, close combat he had almost no HP, but, could throw a dagger like a Ballista. It wasnt needed however, as when he turned one corner, he ran into the corrupt duke who had taken over the lands after assassinating the old king. Dagger first. The duke died, and the men chasing him mistook it as Alunda having dueled the duke and killed him, and for that, he was held as a hero!
It went sour as soon after the leaders of the rebellion let the propaganda get to far, with rumors of Alun being the old kings long lost son, and other fantastical tales. So in the middle of the night, before things could get even worse, Alun escaped off into the country side, joining up with a group of adventurers who had heard of his "heroism". That said, they quickly figured out how much of the story was true, but kept him along as he had his uses, some minor skill in lock picking, bartering, appraisal, and stunting with his dagger (throwing the blade to cut down chandaliers, nail an escaping villians foot fo the floor, ande ven eliminate a few guards quietly)
I am amazed he made it as far as he had, i think part was the Cleric had a thing for him, and made sure to heal him first.. or it could have just been a heal minor wounds would bounce him almost to max. But in the end the part was up against a Dark Lord, a wizard who was part way to becoming a Lich while channeling the forces of the unnatural outer realm beings. The abomination tore through the party with relative ease, Alunda having hidden most the time as a powerful fear effect had broken his spirit. When it ran out the Abomination had begun monologue-ing, how his triumph was near, and UN-LIMIMTD POW-AH!!
Seeing his chance he threw his dagger, and plunged it into the Abominations eye (rolling a critical) and using an action point (the GM liked that thing so brought it over from 4th edition) Tackled him (also rolling a critical). Which, is a fairly useless action for someone of his size and strength. But being an evil wizard he had made his home with rivers of lava surrounding it. They plummeted some 10 stories from the top of the castle into the lava below. Hence the day was saved by the most unlikely, the small cowardly, incompetent sneak merchant. I left the game after, as rule was when your character dies, your out (though you can rejoin when another slot opens, but you had to be out for a while. But never got the chance to rejoin as had to move with job..))
It was a major scene at the table, and everybody loved it, Even the GM, who had plans (PCs werent going to die, but rescued at last minute through plot means and all, he just ended up rewriting it a little and they continued) But Alunda was remembered for his sacrifice, his dagger kept and heavily enchanted in his memory.
So, while not the best telling, I hope its inspired people to share ome of their stories of past Triumphant Ends. As sometimes in games, your character will die, but it doesnt have to be a sad and meaningless thing.