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Wizard

Lord Twig's page

692 posts. Alias of Eric Bailey.


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Ashiel wrote:
Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:

Just to respond to something from last night (I was at work and couldn't respond then).

The paladin does not value the code over other people. The paladin trusts in the code's wisdom over his own judgement. The paladin doesn't ponder "is this lie for the greater good." The paladin knows lying is evil because of the code. This is the Lawful part of the paladin's Lawful Good alignment. The paladin may think, "surely this lie is justifiable" but he knows the code forbids it. You don't lie to save the innocent because then you have corrupted yourself.

As an aside; these fall/fall scenarios are ridiculous. I have never seen one that didn't have multiple ways out without falling. Most are given solutions within a post or two that are then ignored by the "anti" paladin crowd.

When the code conflicts, there is no judgment available to choose a path. In one of the most basic examples the Paladin is if the Paladin has to choose between protecting innocent lives or lying. He's damned either way. It has nothing to do with the code's wisdom.

See, and this is where I disagree. Instead of lying he can tell the truth then protect the innocent. He might fail, but it is not Evil to do Good and fail. It is Evil to do Evil, even if you succeed.


Some good arguments. I am kinda on the fence. I do see a difference in degrees of a lie. So saying, "Good morning!" when it isn't going to cause you to fall. Even saying "You look beautiful!" is fine. Maybe the person is still ugly, but slightly better looking before? It doesn't matter, I am not going to make you fall for something stupid like that.

I'm not so sure about the "Well I won't lie unless it is for the greater good" argument. I think it would just be better if the paladin avoided lying at all, except, maybe, in the most extreme circumstances. And they he would need to atone for it.


The ugly child example was just to demonstrate the lack of flexibility. According to the Code as written in the rules there is none. That said I am starting to go back to thinking that maybe Paladins shouldn't be able to lie for any reason.

It goes back to the greater good. If a paladin can not lie, no matter what, then you can trust a paladin to do what he promises to do, no matter what. If a paladin negotiates a treaty and promises to ensure that it is carried out, you can trust that he will. If he can lie for the greater good then you can't trust him. He might decide that party A is right and party B is wrong and as soon as the agreement is made he will make sure A gets what it wants but will double-cross party B. Knowing this is a possibility party B will just not agree to anything at all. This might even cause a war that could have been averted if the paladin could actually have been trusted to do as he said he will.

So in the case of lying to protect innocents. He can't. If he lies to protect them then he can lie about holding up his end of an agreement (if he thinks it is for the greater good).

Let's change the scenario a bit. Guards looking for refugees finds paladin. The paladin swears that he will remove the refugees from the Guards' country and ensure they cause no harm. The guards might accept this, except that the paladin might be lying just so the guards won't take the refugees to some horrible interment camp. Since the paladin can't be trusted they take the refugees anyway.

So for paladins everywhere to be trusted, none of them can lie. Ever.


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DrDeth wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:
After some very good arguments it does appear to me that by RAW there are indeed situations where rigidly following the paladin code would be Evil and therefore cause a paladin to fall, but breaking the code in order to not do Evil would also cause the paladin to fall.
Nothing has come even close to convincing me of that. There is no time where "rigidly following the paladin code would be Evil". As Evil is defined in PF.

Yeah, but that's the thing. It doesn't have to be Evil. Just breaking the code, Evil or not, is enough to lose paladinhood. That sucks.

Woman presents ugly little daughter to paladin: "Isn't she beautiful!"

Paladin 1: "Yes she is." Fall.

Paladin 2: "No. She is ugly." Cause mental harm to child, very minor Evil. Still falls!

Paladin 3: "I'm sure she has a great personality!" Is he really sure? He probably isn't, the liar! Fall!

The code in pretty strait forward. And the rule that you Fall if you break it gives no leeway.

My original argument was that intentionally breaking the code is Evil. But I can't actually find were that is said anywhere. So apparently I was wrong.


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After some very good arguments it does appear to me that by RAW there are indeed situations where rigidly following the paladin code would be Evil and therefore cause a paladin to fall, but breaking the code in order to not do Evil would also cause the paladin to fall.

If Paizo had made it one way or the other, actually an Evil act to break the code or made the code more flexible, it would be fine. But they did neither. It is not objectively Evil to break the code, but breaking the code will cause you to fall whether it was for the greater good or not. This doesn't just make it hard (The argument: "It is supposed to be hard to be a paladin!") it makes it impossible. Eventually you will come to a no-win situation, unless the GM actively works to avoid it. Either way it is no fun.

I have said before that personally I would have a more flexible code, so obviously that isn't going to change for me.

I still think even a RAW impossible paladin would be a better companion than an anti-paladin though. ;-)

Edit: Oh, and I do still think it is better to let people die than commit an Evil act. Depending on how bad the Evil act is, of course. :-)


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Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:

You just have to accept that there are different philosophical ideals and in an RPG you can choose which of them is true. If you think that it is better to lie than let someone die, you can make that true in your world.

However, someone else can decide that it is Evil to ever willingly compromise your morals even to save others and it can be true in their world. In this second world a paladin would be objectively right not to lie and let the innocent die. This would be absolutely without a doubt more Good than lying to save the person. Because that is the law of that universe.

You don't have to like gravity for it to be true. It is the same with an objective morality system, which is what Pathfinder and it's precursors employ.

True, but you don't know which morality they employ. As demonstrated by the definition of good, your definition of what's "right" would actually lead to an alignment shift to true neutral. He's putting his own code of honor before the lives of others which is outside the very definition of good as given in the core rule book.

This has been said several times, but is not the case. The paladin is not letting someone die just so he doesn't break his code. He is letting them die because to break his code to save them would be more Evil. Basically it is impossible for a paladin to break his code for the greater Good because breaking the code would be worse than any Good it would create. This is the idea that "No Good can come from Evil actions."

Now you might decide that is not true in your world. But it could be true in others. And may, in fact, be true in default Pathfinder.


You just have to accept that there are different philosophical ideals and in an RPG you can choose which of them is true. If you think that it is better to lie than let someone die, you can make that true in your world.

However, someone else can decide that it is Evil to ever willingly compromise your morals even to save others and it can be true in their world. In this second world a paladin would be objectively right not to lie and let the innocent die. This would be absolutely without a doubt more Good than lying to save the person. Because that is the law of that universe.

You don't have to like gravity for it to be true. It is the same with an objective morality system, which is what Pathfinder and it's precursors employ.


Thomas Long 175 wrote:
KenderKin wrote:

Not surprised when the Devil's advocates show up in a Paladin discussion thread...

"Well if the paladin really believed in X them he would Y."

The real question is do they take themselves seriously or just having a great time RPing devil's advocate?

A little bit of both. I simply enjoy the logical fallacy of extending someone's argument to extreme proportions to show them the ridiculousness that they get.

Honestly, as far as the situation he presented, I argue with 100% certainty that any real life human that was willing to let people die for some stupid oath he took to not lie would not be classified as good. They would be 100%, without a doubt, lawful neutral. The idiotic statement that there is an afterlife somehow mitigates allowing innocents to die is pure nonsense that I wanted to show him by extending the argument.

Because you and I both know if I had simply said that the existence of an afterlife being confirmed didn't make it any less evil, he would try to argue the point, so I showed him how idiotic that logic was.

There are real life humans that are willing to let people die for an afterlife there is no proof of. There are people that use innocents as human shields to protect their weapons. There was a lady in Africa that refused to lie to save her own life and possibly the lives of her husband and children. Thankfully she was saved by external powers.

I am trying to avoid too much real-life examples. I really wanted to focus on Pathfinder where Good and Evil are measurable forces that can be proved one way or another and an afterlife is a known truth. This does change things.


I am being something of a devil's advocate, but not entirely. In the Book of Exalted Deeds (for 3.5 admittedly) it makes the same argument that I am presenting. A paladin failing to follow his code decreases the net Good in the universe and increases the net Evil. If he remains pure, even at the cost of his own or others' lives then it is a net gain for Good. It is a sacrifice. And sacrificing for the greater Good is Good.

Oh, and the story of a "Good" fanatic going around and killing people to "save" them is something that has been done many times before. Usually the fanatic is proved to be wrong and realizes with horror his mistake shortly before he is destroyed by the true heroes.


Thomas Long 175 wrote:


By that logic, everyone should murder their children at birth because it will send them somewhere better. Further if you do it at birth they're as innocent and pure as fresh snow. More you let them age, the less likely they are to go there.

Or we could reject the ridiculous notion and accept that murder is bad and that we're inherently trying to keep people from dying. It's not bad for them to pass, but we're certainly going to slow the process as much as we can.

No, murdering is Evil. If you do that you don't go to the happy place. Religions specifically had to put rules in place to stop people from cheating to try to get to heaven sooner.

"Heaven sounds great! I think I'll go there now!"

"Oh! No no no. If you kill yourself you don't get to go."

"Awww! Shucks!"

Nope. No cheating. You have to live the best life you can first. And you can't seek out your own death. That's cheating! But if some Evil guy kills you, you are good to go!


Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:

And if someone dies because you wouldn't lie... Is that so terrible?

Yes, yes it is.

Lord Twig wrote:

So a paladin refuses to lie and a bunch of innocents are murdered by some Evil SOB. Paladin hopefully brings righteous justice, kills the SOB and he goes to the bad place while the innocents live on in the afterlife without pain or fear or suffering. Win/Win! :-)

Except for the people who are, you know, dead.

Honestly, if a person isn't even willing to lie to save a person's life I don't feel they should even be categorized as good. That's lawful neutral, sticking to your own code of honor at the expense of common good. That's a paladin caring more about some stupid oath than the lives of the innocents which kinda destroys the very intent of the oath.

I wouldn't bring a paladin down for lying in such a case, but I'd almost consider an alignment shift if he didn't. Though I'd definitely warn him as such.

So you don't believe in an afterlife? I mean, if you did then there would be no problem. Being dead isn't bad, it is just different. Better even! A paladin would have absolute faith that the Good gods would care for the souls of the departed. (Notice I said departed? As in, they left here and went somewhere else.) It is not like they are destroyed forever and there is nothing but oblivion waiting for them after death.

Think about it, this is the same reasoning that allows suicide bombers to blow themselves up in the real world. They expect to get some pretty great stuff after they are done with their task. The big difference between the real world and Pathfinder is that the paladin is verifiably correct. The suicide bomber, not so much.


I actually agree that falling immediately after even the slightest infraction is pretty unplayable, but I can see the argument for never lying, even to save someone's life.

The argument is that even the slightest lie is a compromise of your values. It creates a crack, if you will, in your impregnable code of honor. Something that can later be exploited by an Evil person. It also starts you on a slippery slope. If one little lie to help someone deserving is okay, then surely it is okay to lie to help a party member. Then lying because it is convenient if it isn't harming anyone. Then lying to help yourself, for the greater good of course! Better to just not start down that path.

And if someone dies because you wouldn't lie... Is that so terrible? It is sad that they will not be able to see everyone they know and love in this world, but they will have a chance to meet them in the next. Really it is just like they moved to a far away city (a much better city) and you will see them again once you travel there. With enough money you can even talk to them to see how they are doing in their new residence! (Speak with Dead)

So a paladin refuses to lie and a bunch of innocents are murdered by some Evil SOB. Paladin hopefully brings righteous justice, kills the SOB and he goes to the bad place while the innocents live on in the afterlife without pain or fear or suffering. Win/Win! :-)


Marroar Gellantara wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:
Wind Chime wrote:


The thing about Paladins is they are open minded altruists so to be the opposite of a Paladin you need to be a narrow minded self-serving git. That Narrow Mindedness is you biggest defense against failing because whilst a paladin might care about the consequences of his action you don't. So if killing a bunch of nobles causes a civil war you don't care you just had fun killing them and if killing a bunch of nobles ends a civil war well who cares you had fun killing them. Leave consequences and long turn designs to the devils you are a chaotic evil murder hobo and proud of it.

I would be okay with an Anti-paladin accidentally stopping a war by randomly killing some noble. That is fine. But knowingly stopping a demonic invasion is a bit too far.

Unless the Anti-paladin is traveling with a bunch of other Evil SOBs he will eventually run across someone that he would like to kill that his companions would not approve of. Not killing that person would require a bit of self control that would be more in line with being a paladin. Not killing one person probably wouldn't be a big deal, but after a while it starts to be a pattern. You are now an Anti-paladin that is disciplined enough not to kill Good people because you friends don't like it. That is not an Anti-paladin. That is a mean-spirited but disciplined fighter.

If the anti-paladin doesn't kill people because that goes against his goals then his code FORCES him not to kill those people. Anti-paladins cannot put their morality above their own welfare.

Interesting. My Anti-paladin has a personal goal of saving as many people as possible from unnecessary pain and suffering! Everyone else being happy makes me happy so I am being selfish! I am an Anti-paladin! Yea! :-)

Oh! And my greatest wish is to sacrifice myself to save a true innocent! And you can't stop me! Grrrr! I'm Evil!


Wind Chime wrote:


The thing about Paladins is they are open minded altruists so to be the opposite of a Paladin you need to be a narrow minded self-serving git. That Narrow Mindedness is you biggest defense against failing because whilst a paladin might care about the consequences of his action you don't. So if killing a bunch of nobles causes a civil war you don't care you just had fun killing them and if killing a bunch of nobles ends a civil war well who cares you had fun killing them. Leave consequences and long turn designs to the devils you are a chaotic evil murder hobo and proud of it.

I would be okay with an Anti-paladin accidentally stopping a war by randomly killing some noble. That is fine. But knowingly stopping a demonic invasion is a bit too far.

Unless the Anti-paladin is traveling with a bunch of other Evil SOBs he will eventually run across someone that he would like to kill that his companions would not approve of. Not killing that person would require a bit of self control that would be more in line with being a paladin. Not killing one person probably wouldn't be a big deal, but after a while it starts to be a pattern. You are now an Anti-paladin that is disciplined enough not to kill Good people because you friends don't like it. That is not an Anti-paladin. That is a mean-spirited but disciplined fighter.


Wind Chime wrote:

How to be party friendly anti-paladin.

Your goal is to kill things and you have a preference for killing ever bigger things in more elaborate situations. Luckily most AP perfectly support your life style choice.

Why are you travelling with adventuring heroes because it is easier to survive combat and kill ever more interesting things with the help of a party and constantly replacing a party is just too much effort.

Why is it chaotic because you have no real plan or end game you are just killing things for the fun of it.

Why is it evil you are just killing things for the fun of it.

Ok you might help save the world now and then but any way if everyone was dead who would you kill.

I'm not buying it.

You are with your companions killing interesting demons bent on unleashing a demon hoard. It's great and all, but there are all those people your "friends" won't allow you to kill.

That snotty merchant guard? Can't kill him.

That insufferable family of farmers? Can't kill them.

That bar wench that refused your advances? Can't kill her.

But, unleashing a demon hoard? That kills lots of people and you can join in the fun! Maybe even kill some angels or something!

If you end up stopping the demon invasion and save countless lives. I'm sorry, you are not an Anti-paladin. You're just a jerk warrior. Welcome to the NPC class! :-)


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Ashiel wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:
Why does the paladin not want to tell the soldiers where the refugee is? If it is because the soldiers are evil, he can just kill them.

1) The soldiers aren't necessarily evil. They might just be Neutral or even Good aligned soldiers who are tasked with recovering the refugees.

2) There may be more soldiers than the Paladin. While being a Paladin does mean you're really tanky and hard to kill, it neither makes you invincible, nor does it make your allies invincible either.
3) Your obstinate actions have at best just provided good evidence that the refugees are somewhere nearby and increase the likelihood of them searching the area more thoroughly.

Good job. :P

1) But why are the soldiers after the refugees? And this example was if the soldiers are Evil. If they are not it changes things.

2) If a paladin is faced with a more powerful enemy he can try to escape, fight while his friends escape, or they can all go down fighting. This is, I presume, after the entire party tried to avoid the soldiers but were captured anyway.

3) You are assuming that not answering will convince them that the refugees are near. But the fact is a paladin wouldn't help them regardless of whether he saw the refugees or not. So basically you are saying that it is the paladins fault that the soldiers assume there are refugees nearby even though there is no evidence of that one way or the other.

Let's assume the paladin hasn't seen the refugees.

Soldier: "Tell me where the refugees are!"

Paladin: Hmmm... There might be refugees nearby. "Why do you want these refugees?"

Soldier: "He has seen them and refuses to tell us! They must be nearby!"

Paladin: What an idiot!

Ashiel wrote:
Quote:
If they are neutral but working for evil, he can still kill them. Although he should probably try to convince them they are doing evil and should stop before he does so.

I love how the only option you can come up with is either start murdering people or put others in danger. This pretty much demonstrates why the code fails as written and why Paladins have such a bad rep all over the place in the same post! Congratulations Twig. You've won this thread for everyone. :D

Again this assumption was that they were working for an Evil master. The correct paladin response is, "Stop working for Evil or I will be forced to stop you!" He doesn't have to kill them, but he can if he has too. That is all I was saying.

As for putting his friends in danger. If they aren't willing to put themselves in danger to help innocent people, what are they doing hanging around with a paladin? I thought they were adventurers. Isn't that what they do? The Good ones anyway.


Ashiel wrote:
KenderKin wrote:

BBEG "I need that artifact of ultimate evil, you know where it is now tell me!"

Paladin
"Not a snowballs chance of that!"

According to lie of omission paladin falls....anyone buying this?

The Paladin won't fall in this case because that's not quite a lie of omission, but don't expect to get a positive response. You might very well be putting your friends in danger. If the BBEG also happened to make it a threat like, "Tell me where the artifact of ultimate evil is, or my minions will kill the prisoners", well you're pretty much screwed then.

This is just so wrong I don't know where to start.


Why does the paladin not want to tell the soldiers where the refugee is? If it is because the soldiers are evil, he can just kill them.

If they are neutral but working for evil, he can still kill them. Although he should probably try to convince them they are doing evil and should stop before he does so.

If they are not evil and working for a legitimate authority then why wouldn't he tell them where the refugee is? If he has some evidence that the refugee should not be taken he should present that. Otherwise it is lawful for them to take the refugee and he would help them.

I just don't get where the problem is.

It is not a lie of omission to refuse to answer. That is just ridiculous.


Covent wrote:


So I guess Bestow Grace of the Champion, would not give someone the ability to smite a second time if cast again, it would already count the smite as used.

De-lurk...

The Bestow Grace spell grants you one use of Smite Evil, it does not grant you one use per day. So you would be able to Smite Evil once per casting.

lurking...


redward wrote:

For another example, look to the Swim skill:

Quote:
You can't take 10 on a Swim check in stormy water, even if you aren't otherwise being threatened or distracted.
Skill Mastery won't allow you to take 10 while swimming in stormy water because danger/distraction isn't the limiting factor.

It says "even if you aren't otherwise being threatened or distracted." So the storm is being threatening and distracting, even if other things aren't. Your argument is even weaker here.

What it comes down to is that you are trying to use very specific reading in order to limit an ability of the weakest class in the game. Why would you want to do that? Wouldn't it be cool if Rogues could use a magic item more reliably than any other class in the game? Wouldn't it be cool if Rogues could calmly swim through a tempest while others struggle? (Other than classes that steal their talents and can do the same, of course.)

But hey, it's not realistic that a 10th level Rogue can be that good at skills. Leave the fantastic stuff for the guys that can fly and conjure horrors from thin air. Rogues should know their place.


redward wrote:

Relevant texts from the PRD:

Skill Mastery wrote:

The rogue becomes so confident in the use of certain skills that she can use them reliably even under adverse conditions.

Upon gaining this ability, she selects a number of skills equal to 3 + her Intelligence modifier. When making a skill check with one of these skills, she may take 10 even if stress and distractions would normally prevent her from doing so. A rogue may gain this special ability multiple times, selecting additional skills for skill mastery to apply to each time.

Taking 10 wrote:
When your character is not in immediate danger or distracted, you may choose to take 10. Instead of rolling 1d20 for the skill check, calculate your result as if you had rolled a 10. For many routine tasks, taking 10 makes them automatically successful. Distractions or threats (such as combat) make it impossible for a character to take 10. In most cases, taking 10 is purely a safety measure—you know (or expect) that an average roll will succeed but fear that a poor roll might fail, so you elect to settle for the average roll (a 10). Taking 10 is especially useful in situations where a particularly high roll wouldn't help.
Use Magic Device wrote:
Special: You cannot take 10 with this skill. You can't aid another on Use Magic Device checks. Only the user of the item may attempt such a check.
You can't take 10 with UMD regardless of 'danger or distraction'. Skill Mastery only negates theYou can't take 10 with UMD regardless of 'danger or distraction'. Skill Mastery only negates the 'danger and disctraction' clause. So Skill Mastery doesn't apply to UMD.

You just changed the text. You changed "even" to "regardless". Those two words mean different things.


It is a move action.

Link

Edit: Remember, you are not just holding a shield. It is strapped to your arm.


I don't think the idea is to kill the party. I think the idea is to use believable tactics. If those tactics would kill the party then it is time to think about the difficulty of the encounter and maybe make some adjustments. One of those adjustments could to be to play the opponents dumber, but that probably isn't the best one.

And it has been asked many times, although maybe a little too indirectly. How would you run the soldiers at a fortified choke point?


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Liam Warner wrote:

As for the rest of your post my responses are numbered according to your points.

3) You can kill them relatively painlessly, they don't even need to be awake and there are steps you can take to ensure they can't be raised after the fact. Even if you have them unconcious when they change them they will know on waking that they've been violated and changed.

You are looking at this a certain way and adding your own bias into the description. I would say: "If you have them unconscious when they change them they will know on waking that they've been changed and be happy about it." Same situation, two different interpretations. My way is painless and yours they are tormented by what they did, but are happy they aren't that way anymore?

Liam Warner wrote:
4) There is a fundamental difference between killing someone (the soul remains intact, their mind remains intact, you can contact them and find out how things are going) and destroying them. Whether or not their objectively evil you have erased a living, thinking being from existence. As I said death is not the end of a being even in pathfinder but this is you have destroyed their very soul on a fundamental level that can't be undone.

You are not destroying their soul. It is still there, just changed. And it can be undone with a miracle, wish, or (I presume) another helm. But of course if you did reverse the change, did you just destroy the very soul of the good being that was created?

I think we will have to disagree on this. I say changed, you say destroyed and replaced.

Liam Warner wrote:
5) Reasons why include casting uncertainty on their afterlife, invalidating the concepts of free will and redemption, creating a "good" person who is now tormented for the rest of their existence for crimes they would never have done, the fact that to "create" this good person you had to sacrifice an evil person. Yes they were evil but you desstroyed everything they were on a fundamental level to create your good person.

Again, no one is destroyed and no one is created. No one is sacrificed. They gave up their right to free will by being Evil when they had it. They could have tried for redemption at any time, but didn't. So it is time to force the issue. Kill them, helm them, whatever. They deserve to die and probably need to die to protect others.

In addition, if I had to destroy their "very soul" so they couldn't be resurrected I would do that as well. Again, in my opinion oblivion isn't the worse thing out there and probably better than they deserve.

Liam Warner wrote:
6) Except their not, the person that existed doesn't exist any more its not just evil - good its law to chaos or chaos to law. Your changing everything about them on a very basic level.

Not everything, they are still the same person but with an adjusted moral compass. Just going to have to disagree on this one as well.

Liam Warner wrote:
7) I was merely pointing out that it throws uncertainty on their final judgement. Is the good person judged according to the deeds the evil one did? Have you stolen a soul from hell? How much work must someone do to redeem themselves from something they would have done? If they were an immensely poewrful being who's abilities steemed from an unholy source can they do enough good now they no longer have those abilities? Seriously there are huge problems here from a theological perspective and that assumes you don't get an army of demons showing up to point out where your going wrong.

Uncertainty is fine. Give the judger of souls a challenge. Personally I would send him on to the "good place" but require that he continue to work for his redemption. He should be happy to do it, the helm says he will be. ;)

As for demons showing up to complain. I have no interest in what a bunch of demons think, just as a truly Evil person wouldn't care if a bunch of angels expressed displeasure about him helming a saint.

Liam Warner wrote:
8) That is exactly what I'm saying. Executing someone is judging them in a mortal realm and a mortal manner. Putting the helm on someone fundamentally changes the being in question and does force the gods to change their judgmeent on your terms. The being that would have been sent to hell is now no longer evil because of what you did.

And this is a good thing.

Liam Warner wrote:
9) Yes its my opinion but redemption needs to be a choice, it needs to be worked for and earned in this case once they fail that save they are now instantly good, presumably will be judged as same and have such a different personality that they view going back to what they were (good or evil) with horror even if they were perfectly happy that way before and if restored with wish/miracle would be perfectly happy again. The difference again is when dead they still exist as themeselves here they don't. Yes I regret things I have done but that is the point I regret them as a result of growing and changing and its not forced on me. Also several of those things I regret if you put me in that circumstance again I'd do the exact same thing because it was necessary. If you put the helm on me I might decide it wasn't necessary and I CAN'T change back to the person who would. That is the difference here people grow and change after the helm goes on they take steps to prevent that change from happening. Where do you get the idea that redemption requires you loath what you were redeemed from? In Bhuddist teachings the whole point of redemption is to free yourself from earthly concerns like loathing something. No I understand the concept I just feel that if you come to it through magically enforced means there is no meaning to that born again. It was not your choice it was someone elses and that is why I say its cheapened and meaningless.

I agree it has to be worked for. I would just add that the helm give the evil guy that opportunity. An opportunity that he would never have pursued if I hadn't helmed him.

Liam Warner wrote:
10) You're right there I missed the bit about them being happy with their new alignment although it seems odd that someone could have decades of memories of doing things they find repulsive and not be bothered by it. Although I will point out this really reinforces the whole problem with the helm from a religious perspective. Either you've just wiped a whole slew of someones life off the board when judging them (something that wouldn't be the case if you convinced them to change of their own free will) but if its the second case you could have a thoroughly evil, unrepentant villain who because of the decades of good deeds that now sicken them they did under the helms influence being able to go to heaven because when the magic ended on their death they were overall judged to have been a good person. Mercy in my opinion is imprisoning them and trying to convince them of the error of their ways with words and actions not with magic.

No where does it say the magic ends at death. After the helm takes effect there is no magic at all. It is an instant change that has a permanent effect, just like a fireball. You don't suddenly "unburn" when you die, neither do you become "ungood" when you die after being effected by the helm.

Liam Warner wrote:
11) I'm sure a lot of paladins do fall its not an easy lifetime and solars aren't human so judging them by human standards is a misnomer. My point here is not that power corrupts but that its very easy to just take one step at a time until your well past any lines you would have set. If its okay to use a helm to turn an objectively evil person good how about enslaving a non-humanoid with charm spells because your preventing the evil they would have done and they aren't human? How about in 15 generations when your descendants who grow up with the idea that its okay to do this decide its okay to make that person they like love them because its for their own good and once changed they will enjoy it?

I will just say that the Slippery Slope is listed as a logical fallacy for a reason.

Liam Warner wrote:
12) I'm pretty sure they are yes but this brings us full circle to the whole if evil are doing it is it REALLY good to use the same tactics and then declare them good because the goal is different?

The tactic itself is not inherently good or evil. If a demon uses a flanking maneuver it isn't evil. I can use flanking maneuvers as well and it doesn't make it good. But I am doing good when I do a flanking maneuver and the demon is doing evil when he does his. Big difference.

Liam Warner wrote:
13) I was actually specfiically referring to the process their and not the result. Yes once changed they do enjoy their new outlook (which again I had missed) but each time they make a save their aware of what was happening and didn't want it. We're not taking about immortality and the like your still you and while I don't know about you I find the idea of altering someone like this utterly repulsive and would rather die than be subjected to it. Note this is just the helm of alignment all but a few (e.g a young child having memories of being tortured and raped suppressed with their consent would be an example and even there it would be a last resort) memory and personality alteration through outside means come under the same terms.

And I would rather die than be turned Evil as well. And the Evil person would rather die than be turned good. The difference is I'm a good person and he is an Evil person. Once the again, the Evil person lost his right to existence by being an Evil person.

Liam Warner wrote:
14) Its not a houserule and again its only with regards to repeated attempts to change them. Can you honestly say if you felt your very nature being changed and altered on that fundamenetal level not once but over and over again because you were succesfully fighting it you wouldn't be horrified and perhaps driven mad?

You could definitely say that, but not according to the rules.

Liam Warner wrote:
15) That I think is the fundamental difference between us you're assuming they want to be changed I'm not. If they wanted to be changed they wouldn't be saving against it, if they asked for it then things would be different but this is having it applied to them against their will and I do not accept the objective net gain argument as a valid reason to claim something that is evil when done the other way around is now good. Again if the being wants it done that's one thing but I'm arguing about the application by force to a being that fights every step of the way. Of course if they did want to attone you don't need the helmet at all because they've already made that first step to change their alignment by thesemlves. Which is again where my main objection to this lies if you change them with outside magic its not their redemption, its yours and that is not the same thing at all.

No, we are not assuming they want to be changed. But it doesn't matter what an Evil person wants. An Evil person wants to sacrifice my familiar to dark gods for unholy power. Just because he wants it doesn't mean he gets to have it. What he wants is Evil.

What I want is to turn him Good, which is by it's very definition, Good.

Liam Warner wrote:

16) Are you really the same?

Like/hate the color green (Yes), certain foods (Maybe what if you enjoyed eating living beings?), music? (Perhaps how much does hte law/chaos scale affect you maybe you now enjoy the less structured modern music over classical music?) Same.
Charismatic with a certain skill set (if you were a fighter or the like but what if your skills came from deals with demons, what if you were a lawful evil monk and are now chatoic good impacting your monk abilities?)? Same.
Skilled and interested in magic (probably)? Same.
Everything that isn't alignment (remember law/chaos is part of what's changed not just good/evil)? Same.

Not much to disagree with here, but I would say losing abilities doesn't change who you are. Just because you are no longer a Monk doesn't mean your a different person.

Liam Warner wrote:

@Lord Twig

Fundamental difference of opinion I think I'd rather the evil person get judged for their deeds and if their afraid of an eternity of torture they can live their life trying to do good out of fear.

Obviously they were not afraid enough to be good, otherwise they wouldn't be Evil. And if you are just being good because you want to go to the happy place and not be tortured for eternity, isn't that just selfishness? But once again we are going to have to just disagree on this.


@Liam Warner

I wish I had more time to read and post, but Tacticslion covered just about everything I would have said, and probably better than I would have said it.

The only think I would add is that many people still see to find the absolute destruction of a person as worse than an eternity of suffering (or some other long period of torture). Really? I would think it a mercy. Not to say that I am happy about the prospect of oblivion, but it sure beats having my skin burnt off, replaced, and burnt off again for a couple trillion years. or longer.

So even if a helm does completely destroy or erase a person, which I don't believe it does, it is better than the alternative.


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Tormsskull wrote:
pres man wrote:
In whatever sense you meant when you said, "In my mind, forcing the helm on a person is always a chaotic and evil act."

The person that is forcing the helmet on another is performing a chaotic and evil act. They're choosing to inflict pain on the person, choosing to try to destroy the person's very self.

As far as capital punishment, I would say the vast majority of executioners are evil. They kill defenseless people simply because they are told to. The fact that the person they're killing is evil doesn't enter the fold.

As far as a judge is concerned, passing judgment on a criminal is more of a neutral act.

Its worth repeating that all of this is predicated on intent. If a character is unaware of what they're doing, then the action doesn't affect their alignment.

The helm inflicting pain and "destroying the person's self" are house rules. No where in the description of the item does it say that it causes either of those things. Making those changes could certainly change the morality of using the helm.

And it does sound like you are using an objective system. Not a quantifiable one, where there is this much Good and this much Evil, but certain actions are objectively Evil regardless of what the person doing those actions might think.

An executioner that is an upstanding citizen, a good father and generous to those in need is an Evil person because he slaughters helpless people all day at work. Sure those people are murders, rapists and crime lords, but what does that matter? It is Evil to kill a helpless person, no matter what.

Side Rant:
Speaking of killing defenseless murderers. How is it that Lex Luthor has not be executed for his crimes? Even if Superman is too boyscout to do it, surely a judge and a jury would have no problem. They do it all the time in real life!

And when Lex finally gets "kryptonite poisoning", why does Superman (or anyone for that matter) feel sorry for him? He is a mass-murdering, megalomaniac that has been using that kryptonite in an effort to kill Superman dead for years. The fact that it is finally killing him is well deserved.

End Side Rant

If that's how you want to run your world, cool. It could even be interesting, but I personally don't agree with your definition of Evil. Give me a helm to put on murders and I will make the world a better place.


Tacticslion wrote:
I think he means he doesn't play with an Objective System, but still Objective Alignment. Many people confuse the two. It's easy to do.

Okay. I'm confused. What's the difference?


Tormsskull wrote:
This thread has been quite interesting. In my mind, forcing the helm on a person is always a chaotic and evil act. I don't play with objective good and evil though.

If you don't play with objective good and evil, how is using the helm always evil? Wouldn't it depend on the circumstances? If someone believes they are doing a good thing by saving a life and helping an evil person become good by using the helm, who are we to judge? They see themselves as a good person doing the best they can to make the world a better place.

Plus, if the person the helm was placed on already sees themselves as good, would it even do anything? I mean, sure, he killed a lot of people, but they were evil people anyway (in his opinion) and it was in order to save even more people who are good (again in his opinion)! In his own mind he is already a good person, so what would change?


Like many other people I have been thinking about fixes for the monk. One that occurred to me recently was not just giving monks proficiency with short bows and composite short bows, but making them monk weapons that they can use with Flurry of Blows.

The Zen Archer would still be far better with bows, but this would make the short bow a viable secondary ranged weapon without overshadowing other classes.

So am I missing anything? Is there any broken combination that this would allow?


I also see nothing wrong with a 7 in a stat really. I had a human witch with a 7 in Str, but that was because she was tiny. She was 4'11" and 90lbs (based on my wife). I would say even if I didn't get points for it I would have dropped her Str. As it was the points went into Wis and Cha anyway.

I also had a player that really wanted a big dumb barbarian. He made a Half Orc and dropped his Int to 5. I let him take a racial penalty to Int for a bonus to Con in addition to the +2 he put on Str. This actually made him super optimal, but he was so happy with that character and had a blast making some things difficult for the other characters by being so stupid. The other players were on board, so it was all good.

So a low stat can be good. I just don't want to feel like I am being forced into it. I finally made a house rule that allows a player to add 7 points to a dumped stat. So far everyone has taken it, all of them in Cha. I think that is mostly because they liked the idea of riding into town and looking like heroes instead of the murder-hobos they actually are. ;)


I will agree that an Olympic level athlete probably sacrificed in other areas to become great. But is it a 7 in Int sacrifice? Can't some one be at least above average Int and still win a gold? Or do they have to be stupid to do it?

This gets back to an argument that I know has been mentioned in this thread before. A big dumb fighter shouldn't be encouraged to the near exclusion of everything else. But that seems to be what happens.

Either that or people just decide that stats don't matter for role-playing at all and play a 7 Int "genius", but I personally don't like that solution.


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Sarcasmancer wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:
He gets absolutely nothing for wanting to role-play a strong wizard other than being able to carry more junk. And for this he has 9 less build points? Yea role-playing!
Why should get anything extra for it? Does every role playing decision need to result in some mechanical advantage or disadvantage?

Apparently it does. If you choose weak wizard you get an advantage, if you choose strong wizard you get a disadvantage.

Sarcasmancer wrote:
Strong wizards are sub-optimal (except for very specific melee wizard builds, blah blah blah you know there's an exception to every generalization) so if you're worried about being a strong wizard, you're not going to be optimal, if you're worried about being optimal, you won't be a strong wizard. You're "penalized" for it in the same sense that in real life you're penalized as an Olympic athlete if you choose to spend your time on the couch eating chips and playing Call of Duty instead of training and working out.

This is like saying if you want to be blonde you have to be dumb. It makes no sense. There is no real life equivalency here. What if my Olympic athlete studies physics and literature in his spare time? Apparently being smart would hinder my gymnastics routine. Huh?


Skipped to the end because I don't read fast enough to catch up.

My problem with a 7 Int fighter or 7 Str wizard is this...

Yes, a big dumb fighter is a trope, and can make a great character. Same with a physically wimpy wizard. But a smart fighter is also a trope and a moderately strong wizard would be a nice change. The problem is in the points.

A -7 is only a -2 penalty. That's only 10%, right? So a smart fighter with a +2 bonus, is also just 10% off the average. And it helps him very little. A human fighter with 7 Int will have 3 skill points. A human fighter with 14 Int will have 5 skill points (he put his favored class bonus in HP because he needs to). But that is effectively 9 attribute points the fighter can not use to be a good fighter because he wanted to role-play a smart fighter (and have the stat to back him up).

It is even worse for a strong wizard. He gets absolutely nothing for wanting to role-play a strong wizard other than being able to carry more junk. And for this he has 9 less build points? Yea role-playing!


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Thelemic_Noun wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
The black raven wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
I don't think a schoolmaster will be evil if his only crime is promoting words/text.
Many of the very worst human beings in recent times have likely not committed a single "evil act". They worked their evil through writing and talking and convincing other people to support and commit the atrocities they envisioned and promoted.

Can you give examples?

Even Hitler did more than words. He did do evil acts.
Yes, he did. He was personally involved in the Beer Hall Putsch, which, despite being the stupidest possible move he could have made at the time and which resulted in his arrest, did involve kidnapping at gunpoint, followed by shooting at people.

I think it would be a pretty easy argument to make that ordering your minions to go out and murder people is just as evil as doing it yourself. In fact even just suggesting "this problem needs to be taken care of" is still evil if you know that it will result in the murder of innocents.

This isn't a court of law. There is an objective standard of Good and Evil. If you perform an action, even as slight as an innuendo, that you know will result in Evil, it is an Evil act.

This gets back to the idea that Detect Evil on a Neutral cleric of an Evil god is a false positive. No, it isn't. You cast Detect Evil and there was Evil there to detect. The cleric has an aura of Evil. I don't care if the cleric himself is Neutral, he is an agent of Evil. Now I'm not saying that a paladin can just smite him (although if he did it would work, imho), but it would be wise to keep an eye on him just like any other person who detected as Evil.


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First I want to say I love the philosophical back and forth of these types of threads and I have read the whole thing (which took me several days, 'cause I'm slow).

I find myself agreeing almost completely with Tacticslion. I think he has the right of things on this one. Forcing an undeniably Evil (capital E) person to undergo the 'Helm Treatment' is a Good act. Just as killing him outright would be, but the 'Helm Treatment' would actually be better.

As for the fate of the petitioners in the afterlife, I have a little different perspective that makes me okay with their fate. Sure, everyone (or almost everyone in Pathfinder) dies and becomes a petitioner. Their essence is sent to their "final reward" and is eventually recycled into an outsider or their energy is used for some other purpose, completely eliminating that unique person. So in effect, oblivion.

Many people have expressed how much this sucks, and yes, it does suck. But as an Atheist I find it rather comforting. Sure, I will be completely gone, but I have already made peace with that. Knowing that some great Good-aligned outsider might rise from my soul's energy to continue doing good and helping people would make me happy (and by extension would also make my Good-aligned characters happy). It is better than the plant food fate that awaits me in the real world. :)

As for the temporary nature of the Helm of Opposite Alignment (the suggestion that it ends at death). I don't think it is temporary at all. It is a Transformation effect and I would say that the duration is not Permanent (which can be dispelled) but Instant (which cannot). The fact that it takes a spell like Wish or Miracle, and not Dispel Magic or Remove Curse, to reverse the effect suggests that the change is absolute and (for lack of a better word) permanent. Even after death.


I second (third?) the idea of picking up a level of Wizard next level and aiming towards Arcane Trickster. Or even if you don't a level of Wizard is still handy. At the very least it will help your Will save. :)


Bbauzh ap Aghauzh wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:

About the brawler capstone ability...

While I'm surprised that people aren't liking awesome blow as the brawler capstone (as normally you can only select this if you're Large, and have a very high Str and two specific feats), we're looking at replacing it with something else. Any suggestions for this? Compare to the fighter and monk capstones for the level of power we're talking about.

My suggestion is a pumped up Awesome Blow. Essentially it is just Awesome Blow, but the brawler is considered one size category larger and is automatically under the effect of a True Strike spell.

Truly Awesome Blow

As a standard action, the brawler may perform an awesome blow combat maneuver. The brawler is considered one size category larger for the purpose of this maneuver and gains a +20 insight bonus to her roll. If the combat maneuver succeeds, the opponent takes damage as if the brawler had hit it with a wielded weapon or unarmed strike, is knocked flying 10 feet, plus and additional 5 feet for every 5 that the roll exceeds the opponents CMD, in a direction of the brawler’s choice, and falls prone. The brawler can only push the opponent in a straight line, and the opponent can’t move closer to the brawler than the square it started in. If an obstacle prevents the completion of the opponent’s move, the opponent and the obstacle each take 1d6 points of damage for every 10' the opponent was knocked back, and the opponent is knocked prone in the space adjacent to the obstacle.

So with a 20 BAB, +10 Str, +5 enhancement and an Enlarge Person the brawler could knock back a huge size creature with a CMB of +57. The brawler would be limited to only one attack a round like this, but it would almost definitely hit.

I was thinking of something to add to this discussion, but I'm really liking this idea.

I'd change it to Two Sizes larger, so they could awesome blow huge creatures.

Another option:

Immense Stature
At 20th level, the brawler gains many benefits of being two sizes larger. They gain a +8 size bonus to CMB & CMD, +10' reach, the ability to qualify for feats with size requirements larger than medium, 8 x carrying capacity, and the ability to wield weapons of up to 2 size categories larger as though they were that size.

This would roughly do what Truly Awesome Blow does above, but is more versatile and doesn't add such a huge bonus.

You are thinking of 3.5. In Pathfinder being huge only gives you a +2 bonus. I was just giving large as a +1 and then counted on the fact that you can cast Enlarge Person and get an increase to huge that way. You can find the size rules here.

If people really think that a +20 insight bonus (the same as you get from a 1st level spell) is too much, you can always limit the number of times of day it can be used. Honestly I don't think that would hurt too much because if you really want to do damage you would do a full attack. So you would only need this ability for an attack after a move or when you really want to push an enemy around. Most likely you are going to move in with an Awesome Blow, then start trading full attacks.

Edit: If you incorporate what Tels suggested you can just impose a -5 penalty for every size category larger a creature is and that would cut down on the bonus quite a bit while giving you a chance of pushing back even a colossal creature.


The idea of a full attack followed by an Awesome Blow has some cool flavor, but I think it would have less utility and be more of just a thing you did on every full attack.

Consider, with either the standard Awesome Blow or my enhanced Truly Awesome Blow you can close, hit and send the opponent backwards (okay, you will probably fail to send the opponent backwards with the standard Awesome Blow, but whatever). Your opponent then has to close with you in order to hit back. This prevents him from getting a full attack, or if he has to stand it prevents him from getting any attack at all unless he has a significant reach. If he is already next to you, you can choose between doing a lot of damage with a full attack or get him away from you with an Awesome Blow. This gives you a choice, and choice is good!

If you combine the full attack and the Awesome Blow then you have to close with a regular attack, let the opponent full attack you, then you can full attack back and send him flying. Or you can wait until the opponent closes, then full attack and send him flying. At this point the opponent will not close anymore. There is no point! He will go after the wizard or something instead to make you come to him.

You also remove all the awesome saves you can do with the Truly Awesome Blow. If you run to your opponent then have to wait till the following round to get your Awesome Blow in you are too late.


Scavion wrote:
See now that is pretty bad ass. Double the damage on your attack and call it a day.

Thanks! I like this because it is not really about the damage though. It is more cinematic.

Need to keep the BBEG away from the McGuffin? "Don't touch that!" Wham!

Bad guy about to coup de grace your friend? "Get away from him!" Wham!

Minion interfering with your primary caster? "Leave her alone!" Wham!

There aren't any "threat" mechanics in Pathfinder, but I can't think of anything more rage inducing that repeatedly knocking the bad guy down or into a wall.

Just tons of fun!


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Sean K Reynolds wrote:

About the brawler capstone ability...

While I'm surprised that people aren't liking awesome blow as the brawler capstone (as normally you can only select this if you're Large, and have a very high Str and two specific feats), we're looking at replacing it with something else. Any suggestions for this? Compare to the fighter and monk capstones for the level of power we're talking about.

My suggestion is a pumped up Awesome Blow. Essentially it is just Awesome Blow, but the brawler is considered one size category larger and is automatically under the effect of a True Strike spell.

Truly Awesome Blow

As a standard action, the brawler may perform an awesome blow combat maneuver. The brawler is considered one size category larger for the purpose of this maneuver and gains a +20 insight bonus to her roll. If the combat maneuver succeeds, the opponent takes damage as if the brawler had hit it with a wielded weapon or unarmed strike, is knocked flying 10 feet, plus and additional 5 feet for every 5 that the roll exceeds the opponents CMD, in a direction of the brawler’s choice, and falls prone. The brawler can only push the opponent in a straight line, and the opponent can’t move closer to the brawler than the square it started in. If an obstacle prevents the completion of the opponent’s move, the opponent and the obstacle each take 1d6 points of damage for every 10' the opponent was knocked back, and the opponent is knocked prone in the space adjacent to the obstacle.

So with a 20 BAB, +10 Str, +5 enhancement and an Enlarge Person the brawler could knock back a huge size creature with a CMB of +57. The brawler would be limited to only one attack a round like this, but it would almost definitely hit.


Papa-DRB wrote:
LoreKeeper wrote:


-=OFFENSE=-
Melee unarmed attack +20/+15 (1d10+9 20/x2) Type: Bludgeon; Size: Medium; Wgt: - lbs
Melee brawler's flurry +18/+18/+13/+13 (1d10+9 20/x2) Type: Bludgeon; Size: Medium; Wgt: - lbs
+20 to grapple, +18 to disarm, +16 on other maneuvers

Dumb question time, but how do you get four attacks on brawler's fury? (sorry if I am being dense).

-- david

Brawler gets Improved Two Weapon Fighting at 8th. So +10/+5 from BAB becomes +8/+8/+3/+3.


LoreKeeper wrote:

-=DEFENSE=-

AC 26, touch 20, flat 21 (armor +6, deflection +2, dex +2, dodge +3, insight +1, natural +2)
HP 104 (10d10 + 40)
Fort 12; Ref 13; Will 8

It looks like you shorted yourself 1 AC from your Dex. You have a 16 Dex, not 14.


Awesome Blow and the vagueness of the Martial Maneuvers ability has already been addressed. So moving on...

Overall I like the mix of Fighter and Monk. It seems to sacrifice some of the defense and special abilities of the Monk for more combat power from the Fighter. It removes the "all over the place" problem of the Monk for more focus. That's generally a good thing.

I don't understand the MAD arguments. It is absolutely not MAD. You need a good Str and a decent Dex and Con. That's it. If you want Combat Expertise and a 13 Int that's great, but you don't need it any more than a Fighter does. There are a lot of maneuvers that don't require Combat Expertise. With a good Fort save and 1d10 hit die Con is less important for the Brawler than for the Monk or Rogue.

I also don't understand why people would want heavier armor. You can put the Brawling property on light armor. That gives an untyped +2 to hit and damage with the Brawler's primary attack. That is too good to give up. Also look at the total AC armor provides. A mithril chain shirt allows a total of +10 (4 armor, 6 dex), mithril allows +12 (9 armor, 3 dex). By 9th level the brawler will equal the +12, by 13th he will exceed it. You will need a 22 Dex, but a high Dex is it's own reward.

One change I would make would be to switch the Brawler's Strike Adamantine and Alignment. Adamantine should come first, then they can get Alignment at 17th. This is similar to how it only takes a +4 to overcome Adamantine and a +5 to overcome alignment with weapon enchants. The reason it is different for the Monk is because they are aligned with Law. The Brawler isn't aligned with any alignment.

Someone mentioned wanting to make a Captain America type character. That sounds like the perfect idea for an archetype. Also perhaps a Bruiser that sacrifices Brawler's flurry for a two-handed unarmed strike where they can add 1-1/2 times their Str to their unarmed attacks.


To clarify. I am not saying you have to use a dagger, or that you can't be a thug with a beater weapon. I just wish it could be possible to get a character like Merisiel to actually be viable.


Am I the only one that is depressed by all the two-handed bludgeoning, strength builds? Great clubs and lucerne hammers just don't sound like Rogue weapons to me. Sure you can get them to work, but it feels like you are selling your soul in exchange for combat effectiveness.

My apologies to those that actually like big bruiser Rogues.


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For a strait Rogue (Scout Archetype) with no house rules this is what I came up with.

Skilled Scout:

Nightflower
Female Elf Rogue (Scout) 10
CG Medium Humanoid

Init: +6
Senses: Perception +20; Low-Light Vision

DEFENSE
AC: 23 (10, +6 armor, +6 Dex, +1 deflection) (+3 vs. traps)
Touch: 18
Flat-footed: 18
HP: 63 (10d8+10)
Fort: +8 (3 base, +0 Con, +2 feat, +3 resistance)
Ref: +16 (7 base, +6 Dex, +3 resistance) (+3 vs. traps)
Will: +7 (3 base, +1 Wis, +3 resistance) (+2 vs. enchantment)
Defensive Abilities: Evasion, Immune sleep

OFFENSE
Speed: 30 ft.
Melee:
Dagger +7/+2 (1d4/19-20x2)
Ranged:
+3 Longbow +17/+12 (1d8+3/x3)
+3 Longbow w/ PBS and Sneak Attack +18 (1d8+4/x3 +5d6+5 bleed)
Special Attacks: Scout’s Charge, Skirmisher, Sneak Attack +5d6

STATISTICS
Str: 10 +0 (10 base)
Dex: 22 +6 (15 base, +2 racial, +1 level, +4 enhancement)
Con: 10 +0 (12 base, -2 racial)
Int: 18 +4 (15 base, +2 racial, +1 level)
Wis: 12 +1 (12 base)
Cha: 12 +1 (12 base)

BAB: +7/+2; CMB: +7; CMD: 24
Feats: Alertness, Great Fortitude, Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Skill Focus: Acrobatics, Weapon Focus: Longbow
Skills: Acrobatics +25(10r), Bluff +14(10r), Climb +13(10r), Disable Device +19(10r), Disguise +14(10r), Knowledge (dungeoneering) +17(10r), Knowledge (local) +17(10r), Perception +20(10r), Sense Motive +18(10r), Sleight of Hand +19(10r), Stealth +24(10r), Use Magic Device +14(10r)
Languages: Common, Elven +4
Special Qualities: +2 to Dex, +2 Int, -2 Con, Elven Immunities (+2 vs. enchantment, immune to sleep), Keen Senses (+2 perception), Low-Light Vision, Silent Hunter (reduce stealth penalty when moving by 5), Weapon Familiarity (proficient with longbows, longswords, rapiers, and shortbows, and treat any weapon with the word “elven” in its name as a martial weapon)
Class Abilities: Evasion, Rogue Talent (Bleeding Attack, Fast Tumble, Sniper’s Eye, Trap Spotter, Weapon Training), Scout’s Charge, Skirmisher, Sneak Attack +5d6, Trapfinding, Trap Sense +3

Equipment:
+2 Shadow Mithril Chain Shirt (8,850gp)
Belt of Incredible Dexterity +4 (16,000)
Cloak of Resistance +3 (9,000gp)
Ring of Protection +1 (2,000gp)
3 Daggers (6 gp)
+3 Longbow (18,400gp)
40 Arrows (2gp)
20 Adamant Arrows (1,201gp)
Explorer's Outfit (0gp)
Handy Haversack (2,000gp)
Efficient Quiver (1,800gp)
Bedroll (0.1gp)
Waterskin (1gp)
Wand of Cure Light Wounds, 50ch (750gp)
Potion of Cure Moderate Wounds (300gp)
5 Alchemist Fire (100gp)
5 Acid Flask (50gp)
5 Smokestick (100gp)
5 Tanglefoot Bag (250gp)
60,810.1

Money: 1,189.9gp

62,000gp

Being an Elf hurts her Con and thus Fort save, but helps Dex, Int, Perception (with low-light vision), Will vs. Enchantments and gets proficiency with longbow.

She has 12 skills, all maxed, some enhanced by race, feats, talents or magic.

In combat this character will need to get within 30' and stay there in order to get her Sneak Attack. When she can get Sniper's Goggles she can stay farther away. The general strategy is to Snap Shot in the surprise round then move and fire every round with Sneak Attack damage. She makes no attempt at full attacking.

She will never be a huge damage dealer, but will annoy enemies with bleed damage and can ignore most DR with the right arrows. Use Magic Device and alchemical items give her some options. She should probably get some scroll for more flexibility.


Voadam wrote:

"No. You are a fiend, demon, and anything you grant will do more evil than good."

"That is a possibility you should consider paladin. If that is the case then morally you should not bargain with me or you will cause more evil than good in the world from your actions. A reasonable fear that could stop you from accepting my offer to do great good and stop great evil. I could tell you it is not so but you have no reason to believe a fiend.

"But if it is not so, if the evil consequences are less than the good you can do, then turning down my offer allows more evil to go unchecked in the world, more good to be left undone. Then rejecting the offer is rejecting the opportunity to do good and rejecting the opportunity to bind me to do good. If that is the case then morally you should bargain with me. Do good, or set my evil power against other evils in the world and accomplish much to make the world a better place if your goal as a paladin is to do good.

"But there remains the possibility that in attempting to do great good you will do more evil. No option here offers you certainty that you are ultimately doing the right thing. Such is life.

"So do you do nothing and safeguard your own purity but allow so much evil in the world to thrive as you turn down the chance to do something significant about it? Or do you risk the consequences of trying to do great good?"

"My only wish would be your absolute and total destruction such that even the memory of you would fade from every being and record. But even then I fear the price would be too high."

"You would have me throw away the certainty of my purity for the chance of good, but my purity if not for my own sake. It is dedicated to my Goddess and the cause of Good. It is to balance and oppose the Evil of others. It is not mine to give."

"I have much Good left to do. I will not gamble that Good away on a rigged game."


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Aelryinth wrote:

The Evil party simply has to have different goals that are not in conflict with one another.

One wants to be the ultimate necromancer. The next High Priest of the God of death on this world. The third a tyrant king. The last the ultimate assassin and master of secrets. These are not necessarily conflicting goals, especially if the centers of power are far enough apart. If they all want the same artifact, well, then you're just asking for trouble, and they'll each go at it separately instead of together.

They would indeed need to be far apart. But even then, say all have attained their goals. Are they happy with what they have now? Do they say, "this is enough, I have everything I want" and leave it at that? Or does the necromancer think, "You know, I could totally scry and die King Tyrant over their and get a whole kingdom full of material for more undead." Or the High Priest of Death realizes that there is entirely too much not dying in the kingdom or that the necromancer is flaunting Death with his undeadness.

Not saying this absolutely will happen. Some Big Bad Evil Guys are happy sitting in their happy Evil place. But there is always the danger that some other BBEG will decide that he is not happy and what would really make him happy is taking what some other BBEG has.

Aelryinth wrote:
No, they won't sacrifice themselves for others. They can happily order their minions to do so, however, and the minions will do so, because not obeying the order is likely to be far more painful then dying in combat.

I would say that minions will fight until they figure out some way of not dying. Falling after the first hit and playing dead could be viable. Especially if they think they can get mercy from the "stupid" Good guys.

Aelryinth wrote:
You keep splives around for a reason. If the evil masterminds don't have their own escape plans, why, they deserve to get shafted. Better for the mage to toss up the wall of stone to block the choke point instead of expecting the unholy champion to do the same...or summon something big with a lot of hit points that can do the same. The anti-paladin's fiendish companion, maybe.

Good guys can do all this too (except the fiendish companion thing). But if all that fails they have the paladin they can fall back on.

Aelryinth wrote:
And hanging together against Team Stupid Good is just pragmatic. You can watch each other's backs and stay out of one another's way, because Team Good is coming and you aren't going to survive separately. You don't have to like it, and there's nothing that says you can't try and use it to your advantage...but having a high level guy around who is just as interested in stomping on any idiotic do-gooders who are trying to upset your apple cart tends to be more useful then having more terrified minions who get thrown into that shiny fricassee machine to no effect.

I agree with most of this, although there is no reason to get insulting. Good is not stupid any more than Evil is. It is possible to have some Stupid Good groups, just as it is possible to have some Stupid Evil groups. There is also Team Good Jerks and Team Evil Jerks. But being Good does not automatically make you an idiot.

Aelryinth wrote:

It's noteworthy that the ONLY viable argument against Team Evil is Chronic Backstabbing Order. As soon as you get that under control, Team Evil is literally a murder machine. With no limits on actions you can take, Team Evil is able to take nasty all the way to the top.

There's a reason Paladins are so freaking tough, and its because of all the stuff Team Evil can pull without losing any sleep. Just consider all the ways you could really, really work over anyone, everyone they love, anyone they know, anyone they associate with, and you realize that putting yourself up against Team Evil is a terrifying prospect.

Immunity to fear: Job requirement.

And I would argue that the Team Evil murder machine can easily be matched by a ruthlessly efficient Good Team. Good does not need to be nice. They can grant mercy, but they don't have to vs. the truly Evil types you are talking about. Yes, Team Evil can go after vulnerable loved ones, but that won't stop the Good team from hunting them down and exacting righteous vengeance.

If Team Evil is really bad enough then Team Good would be happy to play a zero sum game. As long as Team Evil dies they have no problem with dying themselves. After that Team Good gets to hang out in the Happy Fun afterlife that Good people expect. Team Evil gets to enjoy being some demon lord's sentient chamber pot.


I am not saying you are doing anything wrong. I am just explaining the advantages of Good over Evil. My first post was in response to Aelryinth...

Aelryinth wrote:

And a lot of extremely good optimizers will tell you that an anti-paladin is actually better in a party then a paladin. That Aura that lowers enemy saves is incredibly powerful in alliance with other casters.

And the fact he can lie, cheat, betray, use poison, burn down villages, etc, is just extra icing on the cake.

Now I agree that these are advantages for team Evil. They are ruthless and are not burdened by having to be nice to anyone. But on the flip side those same "virtues" work against them when it comes to big objectives. The ability to "lie, cheat, betray," (his words, not mine) also means you can not be trusted.

If you want your Anti-Paladin to be honest and trustworthy because he sees that as advancing his personal goals, great! That is actually an interesting character. But he can not self-sacrifice. He is completely incapable of it. If he does hold that bridge against impossible odds so that his friends and companions can escape, he will fall.

Also, I wouldn't want to get in between him (or her?) and power. In the Shackled City campaign there is a part were a choice has to be made and the person that makes that choice gains a pretty significant amount of power. If a Good character were to step up to claim that power, would you let them?

This is kind of like the Paladin falling dilemma I guess. The party doesn't want the power to go to team Evil. But if you don't claim the power the balance will shift towards Good, and you will fall.

Now you can say that you were being honest, helpful and trustworthy as a way to gain power, but now you have that chance right in front of you and the only thing in your way are your friends...

Let's see... What would Kitiara do?


@MrSin: That's great that you are not a backstabbing jerk, but what about that murder-hobo next to you? Or that demon that showed up to "help"? While you are being all trustworthy, some other Chaotic Evil jerk is going to figure out a way to use that against you.

You don't have to be a backstabbing jerk, but they are certainly more common on team Evil. And like I said, he who backstabs first, wins.

@anonymous: I am not talking about suicidal religious zealots that are going around killing themselves and all the heretics around them. I am talking about Good people being willing to sacrifice themselves for others. They don't want to die, but they will if it will save others.

The classic example is holding the choke point while the rest of your group retreats. Is an anti-paladin really going to stay back and fight while others escape? If he doesn't, will any of his companions cover his escape instead? I doubt it.

Edit: I was distracted during my post and another post disappeared while I was writing it. Removed poster's name to preserve anonymity.

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