Defense of Paladins: feedback please?

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I'm not sure that's true, but no matter. You are speaking to a target audience: i.e. the people who read these boards, many (if not most) of whom will be 4e players.



Keep moving the goal posts. You'll hit upon something useful at some point.

Prove the majority of the people READING this board are 4E players.

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.

I want alignments back into the mechanics. 

Detect Evil, Smite Evil, Holy Word, you name it.

Fine by me, as long as no one tries to make me roleplay a particular way simply because it suits them.



That should be true of anything in the game. "Don't tread on me" is self-evident enough to be left unsaid.

Simultaneously, DMs need to be smart enough to incorporate these things into their games without pitching fits when players use the tools as their disposal and unwind their "precious little plots"...which seems to be a HUGE concern some DMs have with alignment...and it is 100% their failing and poor attitudes.

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.



Those two things.  Basically that is why I want alignment not in the mechanics.  Not because I don't want to be good, but rather I don't want to be put in a grey situation whose "right answer" is DM defined and not rules defined.

Keep it separate, like in 4e. 



...How in the world does any of that provide a "right" answer?

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.

Excuse me, who is moving goalpoasts?

I said many (if not most) of the people reading this will play 4e (which is not an unreasonable assumption given that this is a subset of the WotC 4e forums), so I don't see why I have to prove that a majority are 4e.

Many != majority. 

And congratulations, straw man argument successfully raised. 
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
Excuse me, who is moving goalpoasts?

I said many (if not most) of the people reading this will play 4e (which is not an unreasonable assumption given that this is a subset of the WotC 4e forums), so I don't see why I have to prove that a majority are 4e.

Many != majority. 

And congratulations, straw man argument successfully raised. 



It is still an assumption. So if MORE people play other editions of Dungeons & Dragons AND 4th Edition is soon-to-be-defunct, how is it the most valid point of discussion? The answer is: It isn't necessarily but it is the most valid to you so you are selfishly insisting that it be the end-all-be-all of the discussions present.

Too bad, so sad. Things don't work that way.

EDIT: I'll also add that in your own post you wrote "many (if not most)" and most implies majority. So, yes, in your own post you were attempting to imply a majority.

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.

No, I am saying that it should be taken into consideration, which you seem to be unable to do.

And no it didn't just imply a majority, it gave the opportunity for me to be right whether it was a majority or not. What it did imply was a either a large minority or a small majority.

Also, don't tell me what I was trying to imply. What I was /trying/ to do you have no way of knowing. You can only see the result. 
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
No, I am saying that it should be taken into consideration, which you seem to be unable to do.

And no it didn't just imply a majority, it gave the opportunity for me to be right whether it was a majority or not. What it did imply was a either a large minority or a small majority.

Also, don't tell me what I was trying to imply. What I was /trying/ to do you have no way of knowing. You can only see the result. 



Right whether it's true or not? So basically you reserve the right to heavily imply or outright say stuff but not really commit to it in case its shown to be false or useless as a statement? Seems fair. Also seems about as genuine as a lot of what gets said.

The result is that you have been caught shfiting goal posts...and disproven. Again.

This is not a 4E only forum. 4E is facing becoming obsolete. More people, combined, play other versions of D&D (or D&D based products) than play ONLY 4th Edition. Therefore all those things mean that speaking of D&D GENERALLY means that it is entirely fair to make assumptions based on the MAJORITY of D&D products. That 4E does not have some of those qualities merely means that that particular bit MIGHT not be germaine to 4th Ed. It is not an edition war nor it is anything else like that except that YOU desperately want it to be so that you can try to turn it into a victimization thing.

TL:DR version - Get down off that cross because no one is gonna pound nails in for you.

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.

Im asking alignment defenders to define it because it's so obviously easy, there should be no trouble defining Evil as Detect Evil would detect it.

Given you're an alignment defender, I fully expect you will make zero attempts at defining evil and will simply insult me and make excuses.



Huh? strange that someone who is against allignment systems woudl stereotype my behavior in exactly the same way that he is against. I am for allignment and therefore will only hurl insults and excuses rather then make a plausible arguement? Might I say how very CN of you?

Empathy and an inherent sense of right and wrong are natural states of the human makeup, if someone lacks the ability to discern between right and wrong, basic ethics or to empathise with others, then they are afflicted with a level of sociopathic personality disorder. It's why Lie detectors work, because we inherently know it's wrong to lie. That disorder is actually very common in most people to some minor degree but is only refered to when it it's a significant magnitude.

But if you wish for a definition of Evil in game terms, you only need to flip over to the PHB and read the entry, it is laid out pretty clear, and if someone don't understand that definition and can't distinguish betwene Good (value life) and Evil (harms life) then their sociopathic personality disorder probably needs treatment. That isn't an insult, I am being serious, they should Seek Help!

A monster, such as a troll, goblin etc, that wantonly kills sentient creatures to feast on their flesh, derives pleasure from acts of cruelty and destruction, murders, rapes, destroys is Evil.

An amoral person who will do do anythign to achieve his goal, including murder, inslavement, blackmail, torture, etc etc, has no respect for the value of life or freedom of others (ie murders his parrents for the inheritence, kidnaps children and forces them to work to death in his mines) is evil

If we are playign 3.5 edition (I asume this reference from the Paladin topic) then Evil is defined as follows:

Good: protects innocent life. 
Evil:   debase or destroy innocent life, whether for fun or profit

Good:  implies altruism, respect for life, and a concern for the dignity of sentient beings. Good characters make personal sacrifices to help others 
Evil:     implies hurting, oppressing, and killing others. Some evil creatures simply have no compassion for others and kill without qualms if doing so is convenient. Others actively pursue evil, killing for sport or out of duty to some evil deity or master.

People who are neutral with respect to good and evil have compunctions against killing the innocent (Evil) but lack the commitment to make sacrifices to protect or help others (Good).

If someone reads the allignment page and somehow doesn't understand the difference between Good and Evil (assuming they can read at that point) then they have some serious sociopathic personality disorder going on.  
Indeed



Well put stuff, Mr Customer.

I would not expect a response though since EnglishLanguage has probably stealth-excused himself from the thread since he was given the links from Wizards themselves that explicitly disprove what he was saying. That is pretty much his M.O. (IE: make ridiculous claims that are easily disprovable...have them disproven...run away...lurk for a while...repost ridiculous claims...repeat)

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.



If someone reads the allignment page and somehow doesn't understand the difference between Good and Evil (assuming they can read at that point) then they have some serious sociopathic personality disorder going on.  



The problem isn't in the extremes. The problems come up in the details. Upthread, the OP states that if his Paladin detects evil on someone, that gives him the right to Smite. The nature of the evil commited being irrelevant. I put forth that a merchant who regularly bilks his customers and misrepresents his wares is Lawful Evil. The OP's Paladin would Smite him on the street before knowing the nature of his crimes. In no way is death a just punishment for the merchant's crimes, so I would rule that the Paladin overstepped his bounds and hit him with a power loss and have the City Watch arrest him and bring him up on murder charges. The Paladin took the law into his own hands, and in his pride, made a rash and unjust judgment.

This, apparently, makes me a bad DM.

It is these areas where DM adjudication and interpretation needs to happen, not the extremes. Orcs are raiding the town, protect the innocents and slay the orcs. Fine by me. Follow the orcs' trail back to their village afterwards and slaughter the entire tribe, including women, children, aged and infirm (non-combatants), not so much. It doesn't matter that the Orc stat block says Chaotic Evil. Just like not all Drow are evil (Drizz't and others), not all Orcs are evil. The stat block means that most of the Orcs that a player is likely to encounter, like the ones who raid villages, are Chaotic Evil. Beyond that are the areas where what is evil is less clear. Because the child is no threat now, but could with the wrong upbringing, become a raider, is it okay to kill him? What if he could be turned away from the dark path with the right upbringing? Is it still okay to kill him just because the PCs can't be bothered?

Alignment arguments don't happen at the extremes. Alignment arguments happen in the grey areas.

Edit: apologies to the OP. It was not the OP who had the Smite on sight Paladin. For some reason, I thought Onewhocalledcrow started this thread.

..."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />The problem isn't in the extremes. The problems come up in the details. Upthread, the OP states that if his Paladin detects evil on someone, that gives him the right to Smite. The nature of the evil commited being irrelevant.



This is untrue as it is generally a violation of stated paladin code. Immediately smiting someone is not only without honor (seriously it's a Pearl harbor attack and a half) but it is ignorant in that the Paladin knows that his Detection of Evil is not full-proof. That is someone playing Lawful Stupid, not Lawful Good. Imagine if the person had been falsely enchanted to REGISTER as Evil. If the Paladin smote them like that it would be quite the pickle he just put himself in.

I put forth that a merchant who regularly bilks his customers and misrepresents his wares is Lawful Evil. The OP's Paladin would Smite him on the street before knowing the nature of his crimes. In no way is death a just punishment for the merchant's crimes, so I would rule that the Paladin overstepped his bounds and hit him with a power loss and have the City Watch arrest him and bring him up on murder charges. The Paladin took the law into his own hands, and in his pride, made a rash and unjust judgment.

This, apparently, makes me a bad DM.



No, it makes that paladin a bad paladin. He stepped FAR outside the confines of the law AND acted in a manner inconsistent with the law and honor. Again, lawful stupid.

It is these areas where DM adjudication and interpretation needs to happen, not the extremes. Orcs are raiding the town, protect the innocents and slay the orcs. Fine by me. Follow the orcs' trail back to their village afterwards and slaughter the entire tribe, including women, children, aged and infirm (non-combatants), not so much. It doesn't matter that the Orc stat block says Chaotic Evil. Just like not all Drow are evil (Drizz't and others), not all Orcs are evil. The stat block means that most of the Orcs that a player is likely to encounter, like the ones who raid villages, are Chaotic Evil. Beyond that are the areas where what is evil is less clear. Because the child is no threat now, but could with the wrong upbringing, become a raider, is it okay to kill him? What if he could be turned away from the dark path with the right upbringing? Is it still okay to kill him just because the PCs can't be bothered?



You are within your rights as a DM to make orc children Neutral or Unaligned since orc CHILDREN do not have a statblock. This sounds like a great opportunity for the paladin to express the righteousness of Lawful Good and relocate the children to a society that CAN give them a good upbringing. The evil, old non-combatants can be put on trial for their crimes...there is no honor in killing the helpless.

Alignment arguments don't happen at the extremes. Alignment arguments happen in the grey areas.



And those gray areas are where the paladin code and in-character logic come into play. It is also where, as a DM, one must know what they are doing, what they are putting in front of the players and be WILLING to answer the question "What is the Good action here?" because that is a fair question that PCs should never be afraid to ask.

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.

SNIP



So it sounds like we actually agree that there is some room for interpretation where a DM must step in and make a judgment call. Obvious evil is evil, and obvious good is good. It is the lesser evils and goods that require less extreme punishments and rewards.

Why were we arguing again?

SNIP



So it sounds like we actually agree that there is some room for interpretation where a DM must step in and make a judgment call. Obvious evil is evil, and obvious good is good. It is the lesser evils and goods that require less extreme punishments and rewards.

Why were we arguing again?




Because when it comes to alignment people have knee-jerk reactions because there are people that want to do NOTHING but flame and scream against it which creates an incendiary environment. They are also the people that claim alignment must be bad because of all the vitriolic arguments it creates while simultaneously being guilty of creating those very situations by being entirely closed to genuine conversation.

In other words...friendly fire?

And yes, there is PLENTY of room. A Lawful Good (or just generaly Good) person, especially a Paladin, should practice restraint as well and be reasonable in their approach to what is supposed to be a living, breathing world. Similarly, the DM has to not be such an unbelievable ass that he presents totally "unwinnable" situations on the idiotic premise that "sometimes there are no right answers" which is the alignment equivalent of a dungeon where one door way leads to instant death and the other leads to slow lingering death...not much of a choice. This is, typically, a DM trying to be oh-so-clever (trademarked) about their amazing storylines (read: childish) about how Good & Evil are not really things but are "points of view" and they "prove" this by crafting contrived, stupid events where their players, playing heroic characters in heroic adventures in a game system explicitly designed to create heroic scenarios cannot, actually, act like heroes.

Or to sum it up as I have before...that thing they have doesn't do what it doesn't say it does. And that makes them upset...for some reason. I assume they also yell at their car for not making toast properly when they shove bread in the exhaust.

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.

Alignment arguments don't happen at the extremes. Alignment arguments happen in the grey areas.

Thanks. This is important.

[N]o difference is less easily overcome than the difference of opinion about semi-abstract questions. - L. Tolstoy

The problem isn't in the extremes. The problems come up in the details. Upthread, the OP states that if his Paladin detects evil on someone, that gives him the right to Smite. The nature of the evil commited being irrelevant. I put forth that a merchant who regularly bilks his customers and misrepresents his wares is Lawful Evil.



There are 2 mechanics here.

First, the Paladin has more then Detect/Smite Evil  and Lawful Good Allignment. He has a Code of Conduct to follow. He can use Detect Evil and Smite Evil in accordance with his Code of Conduct in addition recall thata Paladin is LAWFUL Good, Smite on Sight would be CHAOTIC Good. Smite Evil is not intended to be used for cold blooded murder and a Paladin must respect legitimate authority, as such can only take lawful actions against evil.

For example, going into a prison and killing all the Evil (and defenseless) prisoners inside.    

In the event of the Merchant example, the Palaidn, upon spotting the evil merchant with detect evil, would have to pursue lawful means to bring him to justice, not kill, bring to justice. That would involve investigating the merchant, and peitioning the local authorities to act against him (most Paladins would be respected by good and lawful societies) 

What if the merchant was evil and the paladin killed him, only to find out the merchant was under a Mark of Justice spell and was earning an atonement by the local priests to mend his evil ways?  You have an Injustice against an innocent person (because he is already paying for his crimes) he's violated his Code of Conduct for respecting legitimate authority, and he has commited cold blooded murder.

Understand that all three violations are to do with his Code of Conduct

On the other hand, in a dungeon or other invironment, if he bumps into a group of Evil creatures, he does have the legitimate authority to smite on sight. ie traveling through a small town they tell him a nearby cave full of goblins keeps raiding the village, he goes up, detects evil and sees the Goblins are indeed Evil, he then proceeds to bring them to justice on the edge of his sword. He is acting lawfully and in his code of conduct.


The part I have a problem with is that your merchant should not be evil if that is all he has done. "bilking yoru customers and misreprenting your wares" may not be Lawful Good, but it isn't evil either. If that is all your merchant has done, then he is simply Neutral.

See the above where I said the Palaidn investigates him?  When the Paladin investigates the evil merchant he should be finding something like the merchant has been runnign a side business of kidnapping children and women and selling them into slavery, or stolen goods from a competing merchant who's store mysteriously burnt down killing the owner and his family inside. That is evil.

I will add that if nothing is found against the merchant and his only crime is his unethical business practice, then the Paladin has brought him to justice by exposing him as Evil and denouncing his business practices. The merchant's reputation being hurt by this may have to issue refunds and replacements for mirepresented wares and  demonstartively change his practices to get his business back (such as buying new scales etc) 

If your game setting is in a morally grey world, where smiting evil is wrong, such as a urban setting where there are abundant evil citizens who aren't considered criminals, and where their enemies might be good aligned, (political enemies) then a Paladin should likely not be a playable class in that setting. It really persumes that most, if not all, evil beings are viable targets.
Huh? strange that someone who is against allignment systems woudl stereotype my behavior in exactly the same way that he is against. I am for allignment and therefore will only hurl insults and excuses rather then make a plausible arguement? Might I say how very CN of you?


No, I point pout the fact that you're unwilling to provide any points to defend your side, and that it weakens your point. If you don't want me calling it out, actually be civil instead of throwing a hissy fit.

Empathy and an inherent sense of right and wrong are natural states of the human makeup, if someone lacks the ability to discern between right and wrong, basic ethics or to empathise with others, then they are afflicted with a level of sociopathic personality disorder. It's why Lie detectors work, because we inherently know it's wrong to lie. That disorder is actually very common in most people to some minor degree but is only refered to when it it's a significant magnitude.


Calling me a sociopath to avoid having to back up your points. Cute.

But if you wish for a definition of Evil in game terms, you only need to flip over to the PHB and read the entry, it is laid out pretty clear, and if someone don't understand that definition and can't distinguish betwene Good (value life) and Evil (harms life) then their sociopathic personality disorder probably needs treatment.


So pretty much there's one single definition and anyone who disagrees is a sociopath? Fantastic.

An amoral person who will do do anythign to achieve his goal, including murder, inslavement, blackmail, torture, etc etc, has no respect for the value of life or freedom of others (ie murders his parrents for the inheritence, kidnaps children and forces them to work to death in his mines) is evil.


Wow, and it only took, what, 5 pages for someone on the pro-alignment side to ctually define alignments?

If someone reads the allignment page and somehow doesn't understand the difference between Good and Evil (assuming they can read at that point) then they have some serious sociopathic personality disorder going on.  


Again, calling anyone who disagres with you a sociopath doesn't help your case.
Indeed



Well put stuff, Mr Customer.

I would not expect a response though since EnglishLanguage has probably stealth-excused himself from the thread since he was given the links from Wizards themselves that explicitly disprove what he was saying. That is pretty much his M.O. (IE: make ridiculous claims that are easily disprovable...have them disproven...run away...lurk for a while...repost ridiculous claims...repeat)


I actually just asked the people defending alignment to define the alignments. You guys just started throwing a fit and hurling insults instead of you know, defining alignments.

And I did read those links. Unfortunatly, few of it was helpful, with most of the descriptions of evil bein "Evil people do evil stuff because they're evil." without doing much to say what evil actually was.
That's the problem. I don't want your opinion of what's good and evil. I want the D&D opinion's what
is good and evil. I want a clear cut and dry on what is good and evil in this game. 

I want to look at a monster's stats and see if it's evil and why.  Choatic Evil? These guys are the worse of the worse. They will take what they want and they won't care. Power and greed runs in their vain. They bash your face in and laugh at you for being weak.  I can easily roleplay them based off this.

 




Happily, you're in the minority. Just because you draw al your inspiration from the label a fat guy in a cubicle gives a monster dosen't mean the rest of us have to do somethign as dull as that.



Someone poke you under your bridge?

Also minority? Considering the sales of previous editions of Dungeons & Dragons and its previous dominance of the genre, nope I'd say YOU'RE probably in the minority.

Though I do love the attempt at a "superiority complex" towards a fellow player of a game that boils down to lets make pretend with rules. Classy.

Oh also it's a classic invocation of the "You're doing it wrong!" argument that you guys so love to try and accuse other people of using, no? Oh wait, when you do it its okay right? OMG! I think I figured out why you guys are so in love with subjective morality! That way when YOU do something it can be okay but when someone ELSE does it you can say its bad! Good strategy!



No. I'm frustrated by the offering of anecdotal evidence "My group never had problems" as evidence that alignment isn't stupid.

OMG! I think I just figured out your sig! Irony is fun!
"The real purpose of socialism is precisely to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development." -Albert Einstein Resident Left Hand of Stalin and Banana Stand Grandstander Half of the Ambiguously Gay Duo House of Trolls, looking for a partner Wondering what happened to the Star Wars forums?
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141722973 wrote:
And it wasn't ****. It was subjectively concensual sex.
57036828 wrote:
Marketing and design are two different things. For instance the snuggy was designed for people in wheel chairs and marketed to people that are too incompetent to operate a blanket.
75239035 wrote:
I personally don't want him decapitated.
141722973 wrote:
And do not call me a Yank. I am a Québecois, basically your better.
And the greatest post moderation of all time...
58115148 wrote:
I gave that (Content Removed) a to-scale Lego replica. (Content Removed) love to-scale Lego replicas. (ORC_Cerberus: Edited - Vulgarity is against the Code of Conduct)
P.S. You don't need alignment or alignment mechanics to have clear-cut good and evil in your game, either.
P.S. You don't need alignment or alignment mechanics to have clear-cut good and evil in your game, either.


+1
"The real purpose of socialism is precisely to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development." -Albert Einstein Resident Left Hand of Stalin and Banana Stand Grandstander Half of the Ambiguously Gay Duo House of Trolls, looking for a partner Wondering what happened to the Star Wars forums?
Show
Star Wars Minis has a home here http://www.bloomilk.com/ and Star Wars Saga Edition RPG has a home here http://thesagacontinues.createaforum.com/index.php
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141722973 wrote:
And it wasn't ****. It was subjectively concensual sex.
57036828 wrote:
Marketing and design are two different things. For instance the snuggy was designed for people in wheel chairs and marketed to people that are too incompetent to operate a blanket.
75239035 wrote:
I personally don't want him decapitated.
141722973 wrote:
And do not call me a Yank. I am a Québecois, basically your better.
And the greatest post moderation of all time...
58115148 wrote:
I gave that (Content Removed) a to-scale Lego replica. (Content Removed) love to-scale Lego replicas. (ORC_Cerberus: Edited - Vulgarity is against the Code of Conduct)
P.S. You don't need alignment or alignment mechanics to have clear-cut good and evil in your game, either.



That nice. Let me know what's good and evil in your homebrew campaign if you are playing D&D?

P.S. You don't need alignment or alignment mechanics to have clear-cut good and evil in your game, either.

That nice. Let me know what's good and evil in your homebrew campaign if you are playing D&D?

Everyone catch that attempt at a dig there at the end? Classy.

If my character doesn't like or understand a particular action, and that action is being done to things my character cares about, that action is evil. That's exactly as clear cut as it was in the D&D Basic set, in which "evil" was defined for the purposes of things like Protection from Evil as "of a different alignment than you."

[N]o difference is less easily overcome than the difference of opinion about semi-abstract questions. - L. Tolstoy

What alignment is Batman?
What alignment is Batman?

You get a friend request for that one.
"The real purpose of socialism is precisely to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development." -Albert Einstein Resident Left Hand of Stalin and Banana Stand Grandstander Half of the Ambiguously Gay Duo House of Trolls, looking for a partner Wondering what happened to the Star Wars forums?
Show
Star Wars Minis has a home here http://www.bloomilk.com/ and Star Wars Saga Edition RPG has a home here http://thesagacontinues.createaforum.com/index.php
Show
141722973 wrote:
And it wasn't ****. It was subjectively concensual sex.
57036828 wrote:
Marketing and design are two different things. For instance the snuggy was designed for people in wheel chairs and marketed to people that are too incompetent to operate a blanket.
75239035 wrote:
I personally don't want him decapitated.
141722973 wrote:
And do not call me a Yank. I am a Québecois, basically your better.
And the greatest post moderation of all time...
58115148 wrote:
I gave that (Content Removed) a to-scale Lego replica. (Content Removed) love to-scale Lego replicas. (ORC_Cerberus: Edited - Vulgarity is against the Code of Conduct)
I don't know about Batman, but Chuck Norris's alignment is CN (Chuck Norris).

[N]o difference is less easily overcome than the difference of opinion about semi-abstract questions. - L. Tolstoy

What alignment is Batman?



Lawful Badass

What alignment is Batman?



Lawful Badass





"The real purpose of socialism is precisely to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development." -Albert Einstein Resident Left Hand of Stalin and Banana Stand Grandstander Half of the Ambiguously Gay Duo House of Trolls, looking for a partner Wondering what happened to the Star Wars forums?
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Star Wars Minis has a home here http://www.bloomilk.com/ and Star Wars Saga Edition RPG has a home here http://thesagacontinues.createaforum.com/index.php
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141722973 wrote:
And it wasn't ****. It was subjectively concensual sex.
57036828 wrote:
Marketing and design are two different things. For instance the snuggy was designed for people in wheel chairs and marketed to people that are too incompetent to operate a blanket.
75239035 wrote:
I personally don't want him decapitated.
141722973 wrote:
And do not call me a Yank. I am a Québecois, basically your better.
And the greatest post moderation of all time...
58115148 wrote:
I gave that (Content Removed) a to-scale Lego replica. (Content Removed) love to-scale Lego replicas. (ORC_Cerberus: Edited - Vulgarity is against the Code of Conduct)

Those two things.  Basically that is why I want alignment not in the mechanics.  Not because I don't want to be good, but rather I don't want to be put in a grey situation whose "right answer" is DM defined and not rules defined.
Keep it separate, like in 4e. 

 
...How in the world does any of that provide a "right" answer?



The "right" answer is the one where I continue to be a paladin.  The "wrong" answer is the one where, regardless of my opinions/beliefs on morality I go from paladin to squire.


Alignment arguments don't happen at the extremes. Alignment arguments happen in the grey areas.

Thanks. This is important.




This is very important.  I know I wrote a large wall of text on the last page, but it illustrates the problems in the grey.  The problem with most of the arguments is that you want to be for certain things, but in moderation.  A lot of the ideas taken to extremes on either end lend to problems.  Good is the awkward balance in the middle.

Take Freedom:
Freedom taken to the extreme = Anarchy which is bad
Freedom taken to the negative extreme = Tyranny which is bad
Freedom in just the right amount (Determined very ambiguously) = good.
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All these alignment threads make me feel like I'm actively getting worse at D&D.
Ok.  I've been recently reading the Dragonlance novels, and there's whole plotlines regarding Good vs Evil and the grey areas in between.

The Knights of Solamnia have their Code and their Measure, which are intended to keep them on the path of Lawful Goodness.  One of their leaders is Derek Crownguard, who has a conflict of opinion/interpretation/personality with one of the main characters and another following of the Solamnic code, Sturm Brightblade.  At various points, events occur to which both men have opposing points of view on how to act/react.

From Derek's POV, he was good and Sturm was evil.  From Sturm's POV, he was good and Derek was evil.  In fact, neither were evil, and both were evil.

If a group of adventurers go in and kill the children of an evil race of creatures (as in Caves of Chaos), does that make their actions evil or good?  Are they preventing them from becoming evil?  Or are they preventing them from choosing to be good?

(As an aside, one of my favorite 4e characters was a kobold who was saved from such an end by a couple of dragonborn followers of Bahamat.  They raised him as their own child, and he became "holy warrior" of the Platinum Dragon as well — a Thief with an Ordained Priest theme, granted, but he viewed himself as a Paladin.)

At the beginning of the Legends series (reading that now, so I have no idea what happens), Lady Crysania — Lawful Good — and Raistlin Majere — Neutral Evil — are having a conversation.  Raistlin shows her a number of things which show her that she and her church are wearing blinders to the suffering of people even in the alleys behind their own temple.  Are they evil for ignoring it?  Is Crysania evil for her ambitions?

There are a lot of gray areas with alignment.  What a DM or author might define as Good or Evil, the player or Reader may not.  And oftentimes, there are situations intentionally presented (Derek vs Sturm, Raistlin vs Crysania) which highlight these shades of gray.

The 4e (non-FR) deity Bane is another example.  He views himself as Lawful Good.  Most of the other "good" deities view him as Evil (or Lawful Evil, if you go with the 9 point spectrum).

So the question is not whether alignment — Good vs Evil, Law vs Chaos — belongs in D&D.

The question is whether mechanical enforcement of those alignments, and the benefits/penalties that go along with them, are worth the time wasted in debating whether a particular shade of gray is good or evil.

This is especially important when it comes to Paladins, not because Paladins shouldn't be Lawful Good or whatever; but because there is such a potential fine line between it, and there are far too many ambiguities when it comes to it.  Some people blame Bad DMing on these ambiguities; I personally believe that if there is Bad DMing, it is because of these ambiguities.

If my players wish to use Alignment to define themselves, they can.  If they don't, they don't have to.  I myself, in the games I run, have Universal Good and Universal Evil, Universal Law and Universal Chaos.  But I also acknowledge that it is possible to be Doing Good and Abetting Evil, or Doing Evil and Abetting Good, and that mechanical enforcement of such things would be a Waste of My Time™.
I don't know about Batman, but Chuck Norris's alignment is CN (Chuck Norris).

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A rogue with a bowl of slop can be a controller. WIZARD PC: Can I substitute Celestial Roc Guano for my fireball spells? DM: Awesome. Yes. When in doubt, take action.... that's generally the best course. Even Sun Tsu knew that, and he didn't have internets.
What alignment is Batman?



Lawful Badass








I was thinking more Douchebag Jerkass, myself.