Alignment: Truths and Misconceptions

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Ooh I award you bonus points for being self-contradictory and barely sensible!


Thank you. I felt it was important to remain true to the spirit of the anti-alignment argument...



Well that's hardly condescending at all.



Yet appropriate considering how quickly Dralenan was attacked (literally the next post)

I'm on a journey of enlightenment, learning and self-improvement. A journey towards mastery. A journey that will never end. If you challenge me, prepare to be challenged. If you have something to offer as a fellow student, I will accept it. If you call yourself a master, prepare to be humbled. If you seek me, look to the path. I will be traveling it.

 

Proudly playing in many wrong ways. I'm not afraid of playing wrong according to the rules. Why are you?

 

100 Crack Reply of the Yagamifire. You are already wrong.

Ooh I award you bonus points for being self-contradictory and barely sensible!


Thank you. I felt it was important to remain true to the spirit of the anti-alignment argument...



Well that's hardly condescending at all.


Either you are heavily aligned with sarcasm, or I've failed to condescend hard enough...
I'm lawful sarcastic.
Back to Basics - A Guide to Basic Attacks You might be playing DnD wrong if... "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." Albert Einstein
I'm lawful sarcastic.


Well played, Sir... well played.
So what have people learned from this discussion, how has this topic been furthered through conversation/debate on this thread?.



One person came away with a better understanding of the mechanical aspects of RAW alignment for a game he enjoys.

How it comes across to me -
So far it looks like you made a car(this thread) to try to drive it through a wall(trying to further the discussion). Instead you crashed right into the wall(not progressing the discussion at all) and even been backed up from the crash(taking the topic backwards instead of progressing the conversation forward).



You're welcome to your perspective, as it should be.
There is no RAW for alignment.
There is no RAW for alignment.



Say what now? Uh, on pages 103-105 of the 3.5 PHB there is all kinds of RAW for alignment. Same for page 134 and 135 of the 3.5 DMG. I know in 4e there isn't a whole lot of RAW, but they at least define alignments.
There are no rules on those pages. There is some flavor text. A couple examples of play. Some suggestions for DMs who are using alignment. But there is no RAW; nothing that could ever be mistaken for an actionable standard.

Any "rules" you see on those pages are an invention of your own mind.
There is no RAW for alignment.

Well, there's the stuff like, "No Neutral Good Paladins!"
There are no rules on those pages. There is some flavor text. A couple examples of play. Some suggestions for DMs who are using alignment. But there is no RAW; nothing that could ever be mistaken for an actionable standard.

Any "rules" you see on those pages are an invention of your own mind.



Care to prove that? Because the stuff in the PHB and DMG don't sound like fluff. The only times I've ever seen anyone have problems with alignment is when they treat it just like you're treating it now, like flavor instead of RAW.
There is no RAW for alignment.



Whoa! Blew my mind!

There is no spoon!

I'm on a journey of enlightenment, learning and self-improvement. A journey towards mastery. A journey that will never end. If you challenge me, prepare to be challenged. If you have something to offer as a fellow student, I will accept it. If you call yourself a master, prepare to be humbled. If you seek me, look to the path. I will be traveling it.

 

Proudly playing in many wrong ways. I'm not afraid of playing wrong according to the rules. Why are you?

 

100 Crack Reply of the Yagamifire. You are already wrong.

Yeah, I kind of had a similar reaction.
There are no rules on those pages. There is some flavor text. A couple examples of play. Some suggestions for DMs who are using alignment. But there is no RAW; nothing that could ever be mistaken for an actionable standard.

Any "rules" you see on those pages are an invention of your own mind.



Care to prove that?



What, you want us to meet up for a read-aloud session? The proof is the pages.

Because the stuff in the PHB and DMG don't sound like fluff. The only times I've ever seen anyone have problems with alignment is when they treat it just like you're treating it now, like flavor instead of RAW.



The only times I've ever had problems with alignment is when someone like you was reading their own prejudice into the text and then pretending the resulting amalgam qualified as rules.

You treat the alignment rules as an article of faith, failing to realize that not only is what you believe they say an extra-legal construct, but likewise the entire notion that they ARE rules.
What, you want us to meet up for a read-aloud session? The proof is the pages.



If the alignment rules are as you say, then you should be able to demonstrate how that's the case. Sorry if I don't just take something someone tells me at face-value, when my own experience tells me otherwise.

The only times I've ever had problems with alignment is when someone like you was reading their own prejudice into the text and then pretending the resulting amalgam qualified as rules.



My own prejudice? Excuse me? Care to show where I've demonstrated prejudice? I don't appreciate libel.

You treat the alignment rules as an article of faith,



I what now? I don't treat the alignment rules any different than I do any other rule in the books.

failing to realize that not only is what you believe they say an extra-legal construct, but likewise the entire notion that they ARE rules.



I bet you don't have the slightest inkling of my views on alignment, and your pretending that you do is more than a little offensive. Really though, accusing me of prejudice and then turning around and saying all this when you have no idea as to my views on alignment. You're just projecting your skewed and warped ideas of pro-alignment players onto me, without even bothering to consider that your perception of pro-alignment players in general, and me in particular, might be wrong. How crass. Then again I suppose you could be right, I'll give you a chance. What do you think my views are on alignment, and how do they qualify as an extra-legal construct?
There is no RAW for alignment.



There are no rules on those pages. There is some flavor text. A couple examples of play. Some suggestions for DMs who are using alignment. But there is no RAW; nothing that could ever be mistaken for an actionable standard.

Any "rules" you see on those pages are an invention of your own mind.


These statements are objectively false.  Alignment rules can be seen in mechanical effect of class restrictions, differing effects of spells and magic items on characters of various alignments and more.
In order to quantify "good" "evil" "law" and "chaos" in terms of alignment, these things need to be defined.  If the DM's subjective values of those was the intended definition, then the rules would promote conflict and inter-table issues, as people's individual ideas of these things vary widely.  The pages in the 3.5e PHB that were mentioned define these terms for the D&D universe, giving an objective scale by which they are determined.
The pages in the DMG taht were quoted govern the DM's role in handling alignment within the group of players, especially when to change alignment, and how to go about it.  This is not flavor text, but a set of rules and guidelines to promote fair play.  Having rules like that protects players, because it gives hard-coded rules in writing, to keep a DM from saying "Oh, you commited a single evil act, your alignment compltely changes to evil".
Those are rules.  To claim that they are not rules would be like saying "there are no rules in the DMG, it's all suggestion, because a DM can overrule anything he wants".  I've actually met gamers who have said that ver batim.  Doesn't make them correct.



The only times I've ever had problems with alignment is when someone like you was reading their own prejudice into the text and then pretending the resulting amalgam qualified as rules.


Thank you for backing up our point.  Most problems with alignment stem from people projecting their own ideas about what alignment values are (like "good" and "evil"), and substituting those personal values for the ones listed in the PHB.  This is a deviation from RAW.


If the alignment rules are as you say, then you should be able to demonstrate how that's the case. Sorry if I don't just take something someone tells me at face-value, when my own experience tells me otherwise.



Theorem: 3.5 PHB pp. 103-105 and 3.5 DMG pp. 134-135 contain no rules for alignment.
Proof: The contents of 3.5 PHB pp. 103-105 and 3.5 DMG pp. 134-135 are not actionable principles related to alignment.

Ball's in your court, kid.

I what now? I don't treat the alignment rules any different than I do any other rule in the books.



If any other subject in the books were treated in the same fashion as alignment, we would rightly agree that the books contained no definite rules regarding them. For instance, the DMG guidance regarding forced movement over pits is presented in the same fashion.

I bet you don't have the slightest inkling of my views on alignment, and your pretending that you do is more than a little offensive.



And your charlatanesque co-option of real philosophical labels to defend your naive imaginary blather offends me.

Chiba Monkey:
If the DM's subjective values of those was the intended definition, then the rules would promote conflict and inter-table issues, as people's individual ideas of these things vary widely.



Yes, that is precisely what people who mistakenly believe that there is alignment RAW do.
Proof: The contents of 3.5 PHB pp. 103-105 and 3.5 DMG pp. 134-135 are not actionable principles related to alignment.



How so? Walk me through it. Pretend I'm stupid. Shouldn't be too much of a stretch for you, given your continually negative assumptions about anyone who disagrees with you. Given your hostility, I bet it's something you'll enjoy too.


If any other subject in the books were treated in the same fashion as alignment, we would rightly agree that the books contained no definite rules regarding them. For instance, the DMG guidance regarding forced movement over pits is presented in the same fashion.



I think you misunderstood me. I treat the alignment rules in the books just as I treat the rules for skills, feats, classes, all that stuff.

I bet you don't have the slightest inkling of my views on alignment, and your pretending that you do is more than a little offensive.



And your charlatanesque co-option of real philosophical labels to defend your naive imaginary blather offends me.



Is it strange that I'm not offended over this at all, but instead find it hilarious? I mean, calling me prejudiced in a horribly prejudiced post made me angry, but somehow seeing this made it all better, and I'm honestly not sure why. I've co-opted no philosophy, all I've done is agreeably re-iterate the findings of others who have come before me.

It's not my fault if George Lucas, inspired by Joseph Campbell, decided to give a Taoist treatment to The Living Force, which perfectly illustrates a functional axis, on which either end sit good and evil. I put an essay in a spoiler block written by someone far greater than myself in the Who is the Paladin thread in the D&D Next discussion, I suggest you go check it out before you decide on whether or not I've co-opted something.

If you really, seriously have a problem with my points, then challenge them.

Also, I can get how it's possible for my "blather" to be naive, but how is it imaginary? It's there in my posts for all the world to see.

Yes, that is precisely what people who mistakenly believe that there is alignment RAW do.



It's what people who believe alignment RAW is subjective or non-existent do, when they try to use alignment. At least in my experience.

Chiba Monkey:
If the DM's subjective values of those was the intended definition, then the rules would promote conflict and inter-table issues, as people's individual ideas of these things vary widely.



Yes, that is precisely what people who mistakenly believe that there is alignment RAW do.


I note that you completely ignore what I said about how the definitions of "good/evil/etc" on those pages of the PHB do, in fact, constitute rules.  This, once again, is because those terms need to be defined within the context of D&D for there to be mechanics based off those terms (such as certain spells, magic items, and even class limitations or powers).
But you quote that one sentence out of context so you can spout your grossly biased vitriolic bile.

Truthfully, I should thank you.  You are wonderfully illustrating the point I made in my OP.  Your belief that alignment is subjective and without objective RAW, showcases exactly where problems with alignment come from.  From people like you, and others who, to use your own words "read their own prejudice into the text, and then pretending the resulting amalgam qualified as rules".  This is exactly what I have been saying from the beginning.  The only difference is that you, for some reason, view any rules as a "suggestion" or "guidance", as opposed to actual rules. 
Yes... there is alignment RAW...


Chiba, I don't know what you're arguing about... it looks like Alraune agrees with you 100%.
Yes... there is alignment RAW...


Chiba, I don't know what you're arguing about... it looks like Alraune agrees with you 100%.



That's pretty ironclad.

I'm on a journey of enlightenment, learning and self-improvement. A journey towards mastery. A journey that will never end. If you challenge me, prepare to be challenged. If you have something to offer as a fellow student, I will accept it. If you call yourself a master, prepare to be humbled. If you seek me, look to the path. I will be traveling it.

 

Proudly playing in many wrong ways. I'm not afraid of playing wrong according to the rules. Why are you?

 

100 Crack Reply of the Yagamifire. You are already wrong.

Yes... there is alignment RAW...


Chiba, I don't know what you're arguing about... it looks like Alraune agrees with you 100%.



That's pretty ironclad.


Thank you, YagamiFire.  I like it when my scarecrows bear a striking resemblance to Perry White.
Yes... there is alignment RAW...


Chiba, I don't know what you're arguing about... it looks like Alraune agrees with you 100%.



That's pretty ironclad.


Thank you, YagamiFire.  I like it when my scarecrows bear a striking resemblance to Perry White.



Great Caesars Ghost!

I'm on a journey of enlightenment, learning and self-improvement. A journey towards mastery. A journey that will never end. If you challenge me, prepare to be challenged. If you have something to offer as a fellow student, I will accept it. If you call yourself a master, prepare to be humbled. If you seek me, look to the path. I will be traveling it.

 

Proudly playing in many wrong ways. I'm not afraid of playing wrong according to the rules. Why are you?

 

100 Crack Reply of the Yagamifire. You are already wrong.

IMAGE(http://i49.tinypic.com/350w491.jpg)
This is the thread for "facts" about alignment. If you want to post opinions, there is another thread for that. If you like to use metaphor to explain alignment, this is also a good place.
I was thinking alignment is a good topic that everyone always agree on. We should talk about it some more in many threads.
I was thinking alignment is a good topic that everyone always agree on. We should talk about it some more in many threads.



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