Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

Removing a character from play for being "Evil"


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

151 to 200 of 210 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | next > last >>
Qadira ***** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

james maissen wrote:

1. Have you done this to people? Either warn or remove them? Any specific instances of this perhaps?

2. How exactly do you, as a society table judge, remove a PC from the game other than by permanent death, which we will agree hasn't happened?

If I were the player that you said this to, I'd say back to you that you have no such authority, and I'll be playing my character. If you said 'he's removed from the campaign cause he's now evil cause you won't do as I say' I would reply.. No.

Hi, James. I have warned people. I haven't had to write anything on chronicle sheets, because players agreed with me.

But let's say I had a player who was, say, ritually sacrificing NPCs to the glory of Asmodeus. And let's say I warned him that I considered it the actions of an Evil character, and he insisted upon doing them. And I asked to see his chronicle sheets, and I see that several previous GMs had written warnings.

How would I "remove" him? I'd (a) explain that on his chronicle sheet. Then, when he showed it to other GMs, they'd see that his character was written out. And he doesn't have the option to show that or not.

If I thought this hypothetical player were likely to cheat, I might (b) send a note to Mark, letting him know that he should review the situation, and perhaps to the player's local Venture-Captain.

In all other particulars, by the way, everything that Bob has said, I agree with.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
Fail to reverse an alignment shift, you're out of the campaign. Either way, the character is no longer playable.

Okay, that's got me curious: how would a player reverse their character's alignment shift?

EDIT: I mean to evil, that is.

Atonement spell

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
Fail to reverse an alignment shift, you're out of the campaign. Either way, the character is no longer playable.

Okay, that's got me curious: how would a player reverse their character's alignment shift?

EDIT: I mean to evil, that is.

Atonement spell

You know, I'd never read the spell completely. Had no idea you could use it to just up and change your alignment. That kind of takes away my "character is forever banned with no recourse"-inspired sense of urgency from the issue. :P

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:


You know, I'd never read the spell completely. Had no idea you could use it to just up and change your alignment. That kind of takes away my "character is forever banned with no recourse"-inspired sense of urgency from the issue. :P

Makes becoming evil is bit more tolerable huh?

You can come back from it, provided you want to atone.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Chris Mortika wrote:


How would I "remove" him? I'd (a) explain that on his chronicle sheet. Then, when he showed it to other GMs, they'd see that his character was written out. And he doesn't have the option to show that or not.

And I'm sorry, this 'removing from the campaign' is supported by what in the guide?

As far as I see it, absolutely nothing.

Sure he can show 'some GM wrote this cause he didn't like me trying to fulfill my faction mission' and if I were judging him I'd ask 'did your character die?' and they'd say 'no'. Then what would I do as a judge? I would run them through the module that they showed up for.

Why?

Cause a table GM noting this, or noting that 'this PC has a permanent see invisibility' means absolutely nothing. If anything I would cross it out, initial it and report the GM to the administration.

Now a table judge can note an ongoing condition. Which Bob wants to shoehorn this into, where at least there is SOMETHING in the guide that the table GM can do. To whit I'm sure another GM could write that it was 'cleared' by 'good deeds' and that would be that.

Again if I would do anything on encountering this it would be to report the GM. Towards which I'm hoping that Mark gets a chance to read this, as I think that your actions here are wrong. Telling a player that 'their character is out of the game' is a HORRIBLE thing to do. Especially considering, you don't have that authority whatsoever.

-James

Andoran ***** Venture-Captain, Minnesota—St. Paul

james maissen wrote:
Chris Mortika wrote:


How would I "remove" him? I'd (a) explain that on his chronicle sheet. Then, when he showed it to other GMs, they'd see that his character was written out. And he doesn't have the option to show that or not.

And I'm sorry, this 'removing from the campaign' is supported by what in the guide?

As far as I see it, absolutely nothing.

Sure he can show 'some GM wrote this cause he didn't like me trying to fulfill my faction mission' and if I were judging him I'd ask 'did your character die?' and they'd say 'no'. Then what would I do as a judge? I would run them through the module that they showed up for.

Why?

Cause a table GM noting this, or noting that 'this PC has a permanent see invisibility' means absolutely nothing. If anything I would cross it out, initial it and report the GM to the administration.

Now a table judge can note an ongoing condition. Which Bob wants to shoehorn this into, where at least there is SOMETHING in the guide that the table GM can do. To whit I'm sure another GM could write that it was 'cleared' by 'good deeds' and that would be that.

Again if I would do anything on encountering this it would be to report the GM. Towards which I'm hoping that Mark gets a chance to read this, as I think that your actions here are wrong. Telling a player that 'their character is out of the game' is a HORRIBLE thing to do. Especially considering, you don't have that authority whatsoever.

-James

Well, you and I agree on many points in this argument James. Which I think is a feat, in and of itself, that we agree on something.

But I am not sure that a GM doesn't have the authority, which is one of the major reasons I started this thread in the first place.

*

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Andrew Christian wrote:

Well, you and I agree on many points in this argument James. Which I think is a feat, in and of itself, that we agree on something.

But I am not sure that a GM doesn't have the authority, which is one of the major reasons I started this thread in the first place.

Personally, I'm reasonably sure that a GM does have the authority. Which is why it's so alarming to me that many seem to be willing to throw around the threat in such a cavalier fashion - it's not something that should be done lightly, or over what seem to me to be pretty borderline cases.


Andrew Christian wrote:


Well, you and I agree on many points in this argument James. Which I think is a feat, in and of itself, that we agree on something.

I can agree to that, it's rare. If it's a feat then it's got far too many prerequisites!

Andrew Christian wrote:


But I am not sure that a GM doesn't have the authority, which is one of the major reasons I started this thread in the first place.

I don't see anything that gives them that authority, or even hints at it. Do you?

I find it unsettling that a table judge would exceed their authority and the trust the campaign places in them to essentially hoodwink a group of players that way.

You know how 'folklore' rules and errors creep into D&D play, so you can understand that I find this dangerous to the campaign.

In fact, the way that I see it even if a GM could change a PC's alignment, they could not elect to make them evil as that's not allowed in play. They could no more officially do this than write in the conditions gained 'the character is now a bugbear' or 'has gained a level in this 3rd party class'. Such things are not allowed for PFS PCs.

This whole business seems wrong to me. It seems against the spirit of organized play even.

-James

Qadira ***** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

James,

The Guide does impose limits and restrictions on players. "No PvP" "No Evil-aligned characters". "No cheating" is specifically spelled out as something that merits a permanent ban.

No, the Guide doesn't specifically call out the table GM as the person to enforce that, but who else? The other players? Mark, riding down from Seattle?

Josh, during his tenure, more or less outlined the process. The GM makes the call, and then the player appeals, if he or she wishes, up the chain of authority, ultimately to the campaign director.


PFS is based on the Core Rules, unless specifically noted.
The Core Rules for Aligmment in ´Additional Rules´ chapter specifically says Alignment is the domain of the GM to track and decide when it changes (opposing it to things like AC that the player tracks). If you ever thought otherwise, you would have been playing contra to that rule.
PFS adds a wrinkle in that Evil alignments are illegal, but it doesn´t CHANGE the Core Rule that the GM tracks and changes PC Alignments as appropriate. There should probably be guidelines and standard for how that is done, since in PFS Evil will mean becoming illegal, but that the GM is tracking/adjusting alignment is a base part of the game until SPECIFICALLY over-ruled by PFS.

**** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

I just want to point out here...

I've not seen any of the PFS GMs posting on this topic arguing evil is 'One and Done' (except for Paladins). IT takes a documented pattern of behaviour. I doubt that the 'appeals process' would uphold a 'one time evil act you're out' GM ruling. It wouldn't be hard to contact the GMs on the player's history (if they're reporting I assume they have e-mail) and say "Did Bob do this in your game?" Get enough 'yes' commetns and it's evil PC city.

I also assume Bob would write 'atoned' on a sheet where the sinner sought pennance at his table ;-)

And if you can't afford atonement, pizza works to (yes I'm kidding)

Osirion **** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Quandary wrote:

PFS is based on the Core Rules, unless specifically noted.

The Core Rules for Aligmment in ´Additional Rules´ chapter specifically says Alignment is the domain of the GM to track and decide when it changes (opposing it to things like AC that the player tracks). If you ever thought otherwise, you would have been playing contra to that rule.
PFS adds a wrinkle in that Evil alignments are illegal, but it doesn´t CHANGE the Core Rule that the GM tracks and changes PC Alignments as appropriate. There should probably be guidelines and standard for how that is done, since in PFS Evil will mean becoming illegal, but that the GM is tracking/adjusting alignment is a base part of the game until SPECIFICALLY over-ruled by PFS.

Actually the core rules do not say that. What the core rules say specifically about a gm changing a character's alignment is

Quote:
It's best to let players play their characters as they want. If a player is roleplaying in a way that you, as the GM, think doesn't fit his alignment, let him know that he's acting out of alignment and tell him why—but do so in a friendly manner. If a character wants to change his alignment, let him—

The section you are referring to is a general rule about assigning actions and "somethings" an alignment prior to the specific rule regarding changing a character's alignment. A dm can call specific acts Evil but changing a player's alignment without his consent borders on a house rule.

"


Chris Mortika wrote:

James,

The Guide does impose limits and restrictions on players. "No PvP" "No Evil-aligned characters". "No cheating" is specifically spelled out as something that merits a permanent ban.

No, the Guide doesn't specifically call out the table GM as the person to enforce that, but who else? The other players? Mark, riding down from Seattle?

Yes the guide does say things. However, none of what it says supports you. In fact I'd say it goes against what you are doing.

Yes there are limits. One of the limits is indeed no evil aligned PCs. Which is one reason that you cannot make a player's PC evil. Period. You can no more make them evil than make them a Bugbear by writing it down under 'conditions gained'.

And a table GM isn't the person who bans a person from cheating. The guide spells out what you do:

Quote:
If you believe the player to be cheating, ask him to leave your table and then send an email to the Pathfinder Society campaign staff (pathfindersociety@paizo.com), detailing as much as you can remember about the sheet—most importantly, get the Pathfinder Society number of the player in question.

So what in this makes you think that the GM is deciding the player's fate??

I do think it is Mark, whether he wishes to ride down from Seattle or hurl bolts of lightning from the space needle is of course left to his discretion. Mercifully I think (or would like to believe) that such cases would be so rare as to have not occurred in his tenure as coordinator, but yes it would be HIS call.

And that's the disconnect. You are just a table judge, and are not empowered to make PFS rules, one of which would be deciding that table judges can permanently remove PCs that act in ways that they don't approve.

Chris Mortika wrote:


Josh, during his tenure, more or less outlined the process. The GM makes the call, and then the player appeals, if he or she wishes, up the chain of authority, ultimately to the campaign director.

And this is NOT in the campaign guide, and thus not the way we're doing things in PFS. If it were meant to be, then it would have been included in one of the many updates.

You don't get to bully your players with threats of permanently removing their characters. I personally was shocked to hear someone saying this on these boards!

-James

*

bartgroks wrote:


Actually the core rules do not say that. What the core rules say specifically about a gm changing a character's alignment is

Quote:
It's best to let players play their characters as they want. If a player is roleplaying in a way that you, as the GM, think doesn't fit his alignment, let him know that he's acting out of alignment and tell him why—but do so in a friendly manner. If a character wants to change his alignment, let him—

The section you are referring to is a general rule about assigning actions and "somethings" an alignment prior to the specific rule regarding changing a character's alignment. A dm can call specific acts Evil but changing a player's alignment without his consent borders on a house rule.

"

Take your quote and look one sentence up. It says that alignment is a label solely within the realm of the DM. What you quote is just a section saying to be nice when you tell a player to fix their character. Give them the option of fixing it the way they want (either an alignment change or a change in the way they play the character). If they do not want to change anything you as the GM you sure can force a change on the characters alignment.


james maissen wrote:
Chris Mortika wrote:

James,

The Guide does impose limits and restrictions on players. "No PvP" "No Evil-aligned characters". "No cheating" is specifically spelled out as something that merits a permanent ban.

No, the Guide doesn't specifically call out the table GM as the person to enforce that, but who else? The other players? Mark, riding down from Seattle?

Yes the guide does say things. However, none of what it says supports you. In fact I'd say it goes against what you are doing.

Yes there are limits. One of the limits is indeed no evil aligned PCs. Which is one reason that you cannot make a player's PC evil. Period. You can no more make them evil than make them a Bugbear by writing it down under 'conditions gained'.

And a table GM isn't the person who bans a person from cheating. The guide spells out what you do:

Quote:
If you believe the player to be cheating, ask him to leave your table and then send an email to the Pathfinder Society campaign staff (pathfindersociety@paizo.com), detailing as much as you can remember about the sheet—most importantly, get the Pathfinder Society number of the player in question.

So what in this makes you think that the GM is deciding the player's fate??

I do think it is Mark, whether he wishes to ride down from Seattle or hurl bolts of lightning from the space needle is of course left to his discretion. Mercifully I think (or would like to believe) that such cases would be so rare as to have not occurred in his tenure as coordinator, but yes it would be HIS call.

And that's the disconnect. You are just a table judge, and are not empowered to make PFS rules, one of which would be deciding that table judges can permanently remove PCs that act in ways that they don't approve.

Chris Mortika wrote:


Josh, during his tenure, more or less outlined the process. The GM makes the call, and then the player appeals, if he or she wishes, up the chain of authority, ultimately to the campaign director.
And this is NOT in...

"Can I hear an Amen?" "Amen!"

It's like half the people in this thread (and the other) think Pathfinders are supposed to be heroes. They are not. They are adventurers. Sell-swords. Hired guns. Grave robbers, even.

Neutral characters don't care if what they do is considered good or evil. That's why they are frickin neutral, fercryinoutloud.

"Gee Bob, if you kill that guy after he surrendered, that's an evil act."
"So? I don't particularly care if it's evil or not. Getting rid of one less scumbag in the world is probably a net win for good, so it balances. I'm pretty sure my deity, ABADAR would nod approvingly that I'm maintaining balance in my daily life. If I feel like I've been a little more evil than good, then I'll go do some volunteer work at the orphanage. I'll animate some skeletons to turn their mill-wheel, or raise up some zombie work horses to clear the fields."

"Well, I'm going to have to note it on your sheet..."

"As what? A condition? Evil isn't a listed condition. Poisoned is a condition. Confused is a condition. Evil is an alignment, and I'm not it. If you really and truly want to catalog my evil acts, then I will make damn sure that under your stupid notation, I list my volunteer work with the orphans. And if you are noting what you believe are evil acts on my part, then I want you to note that lawful monk across the table who acts chaotically for half the module because he belongs to a chaotic faction. And I want you to note the good acts that cleric of Asmodeus to my right did, like when he saved the man being mugged, and didn't even try to demand payment. That's got to start moving him out of his "Lawful Neutral" alignment, so that he'll have to pay the big cost for atonement and pick a new deity."

"I'd really like you to stop playing at my table."

"Aha! That's what you really meant in the first place. Given the fact that you were going to try to ban my character rather than simply state that, I'd be more than happy to never have you as a DM again."


While I believe that the arguments in favor of documenting evil actions are well intended, I have a slight hangup on the faction missions.

I agree wholeheartedly that in a normal, single GM campaign, following some of these missions would undoubtedly shift a character towards evil, but this is Organized Play, where evil is banned, and thus its not a good story to tell.

The story of a neutral fighter who slips towards evil as he completes mission after mission without contemplating his own actions in the process is a great one, but far more suited for a private game, where such a tale can be seriously addressed. In PFS, it would end up more like tallying a scorecard and less like moral decay.

I am specifically concerned that by allowing faction missions to push a character from neutral into the realm of evil, certain factions will become functionally crippled.

My specific knowledge of faction missions from season 3 is quite limited, so I don't know if the Sewer Dragons mission for Sczarni is an exception or the start of a trend, but it is certainly evil.

While I am more than happy to see a paper trail of being a 'good' Sczarni lead to characters loosing the title of good aligned, I am distinctly against the idea of being stuck with three choices:

1 - Stop playing by 5th level, when you've hit your evil quota.
2 - Miss out on a good number of mission awards.
3 - Play every game on hard mode in terms of Prestige gain.

I completely understand that a good character should not be considered remotely good if they toe the faction line regularly, but being told consistently that you have to come up with another solution or you will eventually lose your character seems harsh.

If the intent is to have the 'bad-guy' factions harder to play, then it seems that they would have outlined that in the same part of the guide that warns you not to play a paladin of Cheliax.

Osirion **** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Lab_Rat wrote:
bartgroks wrote:


Actually the core rules do not say that. What the core rules say specifically about a gm changing a character's alignment is

Quote:
It's best to let players play their characters as they want. If a player is roleplaying in a way that you, as the GM, think doesn't fit his alignment, let him know that he's acting out of alignment and tell him why—but do so in a friendly manner. If a character wants to change his alignment, let him—

The section you are referring to is a general rule about assigning actions and "somethings" an alignment prior to the specific rule regarding changing a character's alignment. A dm can call specific acts Evil but changing a player's alignment without his consent borders on a house rule.

"

Take your quote and look one sentence up. It says that alignment is a label solely within the realm of the DM. What you quote is just a section saying to be nice when you tell a player to fix their character. Give them the option of fixing it the way they want (either an alignment change or a change in the way they play the character). If they do not want to change anything you as the GM you sure can force a change on the characters alignment.

You are referring to a general rule that states a GM may designate "somethings" not in accordance with their stated alignments.

Quote:


the Game Master is the one who gets to decide if something's in accordance with its indicated alignment,

It is followed by a specific rule stating that a character's alignment may not be changed without the player's consent. Please cite the rule that states a character's alignment can be changed at the GM's Whim. The idea appears to be contrary to the rules as written in the core book and mentioned nowhere in the guide to PFS play.

Qadira ***** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hey, James.

We're continually talking past one another here. I'm going to try to make myself clear once more, and then I'm going to bow out.

james maissen wrote:


Yes there are limits. One of the limits is indeed no evil aligned PCs. Which is one reason that you cannot make a player's PC evil. Period. You can no more make them evil than make them a Bugbear by writing it down under 'conditions gained'.

James, you and I have different understandings of what's going on here. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it reads to me like you're asserting "The campaign bans Evil-aligned PCs, so it's just impossible to have one. Your player-character can sends souls to Asmodeus, torture children, do as he pleases, and he's not evil, because it's impossible."

When I read that viewpoint, it sounds like "The guide bans cheating, so it's just impossible to do so. If you just write down loot on your character sheet or call all d20 rolls as 5 higher, then that's not cheating, because the Guide says you can't cheat."

The second paragraph doesn't make any sense to me, and neither does the first. I read the Guide as being simpler. "That cheating stuff? Don't do it. And that Evil stuff? That, neither."

James wrote:

And a table GM isn't the person who bans a person from cheating. The guide spells out what you do:

Quote:
If you believe the player to be cheating, ask him to leave your table and then send an email to the Pathfinder Society campaign staff (pathfindersociety@paizo.com), detailing as much as you can remember about the sheet—most importantly, get the Pathfinder Society number of the player in question.
So what in this makes you think that the GM is deciding the player's fate??

Well, that's pretty much what I suggested, James. The table GM makes a ruling, and there's an appeals process up to Mark. Mark makes the final decision, and I've never asserted otherwise, but it's the GM that makes the first call.

Because, in the end, there's more than one player at the table, and the GM has responsibilities towards them all. People in this thread have accused me of being power-mad and arrogant and all manner of other things. In my view, I'm trying to look out for the players who don't want that kind of garbage at their PFS table, and I'm trying to look out for the brand, so that the Society doesn't get misrepresented when somebody graphically describes something horrific at the gaming table.

I don't know any way to make myself clearer, and I want to keep from repeating myself more and more stridently. The internet already has enough of those people. So, I wish you a sincere good evening.

Shadow Lodge *****

1 person marked this as FAQ candidate. 5 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

Some are citing instances of killing citizens wantonly and sacrificing infants to Asmodeus. This is a blatant straw-man. How often does that actually happen? Why can't that be solved with "Don't be a Jerk," or "Don't be Disruptive?" These strike me as instances of players trying to get a rise out of other players, not really playing characters. As these cases can be solved through other rules, discussing them adds nothing.

More interesting are faction missions and prisoners. Good characters doing bad things. Neutral characters as well.

First problem. Good characters can perform evil acts and still remain good. Good means you do good most of the time. If you don't track the 'most of the time', only the slip ups, you strike me as a lazy GM. It would be akin to tracking damage and ignoring healing. Nowhere is it said a player must always behave in a certain manner.

I could see a good character, his friend just murdered by an assassin, ignore the assassin's plea of mercy and finish him. This is likely evil. Paladins would lose their powers, but it doesn't, in my mind conflict with a character's alignment. A personality is more than two letters, and forcing someone to react to everything like a robot leads to boring roleplay - bad for the game.

Just because an action doesn't fall in line with alignment does not make it forbidden. Where does it say that? Where does it say that every character must always, in all instances act in line with those two poorly-defined letters? Most importantly, where are evil acts banned? Not evil characters, evil actions. You clearly what to ban the latter through a thinly veiled claim that it's all for the former

Further, neutral characters will do evil things, just not most of the time. I've got a witch who will coup de grace a helpless character who has proven himself a threat. This might be evil. She doesn't care. The same witch went out of her way to put a ghost to rest because she didn't like the idea of the ghost, who did not deserve her end, suffering. That strikes me as good. If you marked off for the former, but ignored the latter, I'd complain about you to the campaign authority, have whatever you wrote on my sheet nullified, and go about my business playing my character the way I wrote her.

Pretty sure I'd be backed up, what with the good actions being ignored.

Neutral is an option, and yes, a few might use it to skirt into evil. I honestly don't care. As long as it's not disrupting the table, why say anything? What does this improve? Who does it help? Yes players can't play evil, but this strikes me was simply preempting the immature baby-killing type. Don't punish good roleplayers because of the threat of immature players down the line.

It's true that a GM needs to control the table, but this view goes beyond controlling a table. You are trying to control the personality of a PC. Perhaps you can ask why the character is undertaking an evil act, and they might have a good reason. If they don't suggest that they might be happier as [x]-Nuetral, as it might better fit they way they see their character. That is what the Core allows you to do. It gives you no other power to change, and you sure as heck don't get it anywhere in organized play. When you tell me my character's personality, my opinion of you as a GM immediately decreases, my idea that you know what you are talking about falls as well. A GM needs respect to control a table, and I see things like this as a quick way to lose it. Alignment is one of the easiest ways to start an argument, and your job as a GM is to keep things moving and keep people having fun so we can all tell a story together. How can you do that if you start an argument? And it will start one. Same as if you said coup de grace or Phantasmal Killer was a death effect.

Also, on the topic of control, anything immediate to the table is yours to control. Things that reach beyond, those are for the coordinators, not the people at the tables. You strictly follow the rules for death and wealth, using no house rules. So too with player alignment. Your views are not all GMs' views. Players need consistency. This alignment marking is extremely inconsistent. It'd be akin to the players never knowing the PA cost for a raise. Further, it'd also be akin for players never knowing their hit points.

Again, unless you track every single action Good/Evil, Law/Choas, this marking method is a miserable failure. It is bad for the game, pure and simple. There is another rule in the guide apart from no evil - Play play play. Let people play, and as long as they're not antagonistic or disruptive, perhaps there can be some nice interplay between those of high morals and those with fewer qualms. More interesting roleplay comes from these types of interactions, rather than those whose ideals all line up.

Some of the most fun roleplay I've had was my CN witch arguing with a LN Asmodean cleric. Our characters did not get along, but as players we had a blast debating the powers of order and entropy. You would deny one axis of that type of RP. While there would not be full out evil on the other side, some neutral characters might have fewer qualms about things that are sacrosanct to the good. RP gold.

Essentially, the game you are asking me to play is boring. It is one-dimensional. All good characters do good things all the time. Neutral characters do good things and occasionally brood, I guess, as that's the only other option left to them. Gods forbid anyone do anything you think is evil that might get them banned. Gods forbid a character suggest killing the bad guy, we're all bright shiney heroes. If I wanted to play a G-rated game, I'd go find one. Mind you I don't always play morally gray characters, I've got a few LG in the mix, even, but no one should take the ones who skirt darkness from me or anyone else.

Again, unless you can point to a uniform measure of actions, and the magnitude each has on alignment, and unless you track each action on that measure, you are doing things wrong.

Evil actions ARE NOT BANNED. You can worship an evil god. You can create undead. You can kill the prisoner. You should not play a character who goes over the line for this, and you cannot qualify for assassin ever, but that's it. There is no mechanism for anyone to change someone's alignment. Home GMs are given that prerogative, but they're also given the prerogative to hand out new magic items. If you can add alignment markers to a sheet, I can add new magic items to their sheets. The logic is the same, the core says the GM has that prerogative.

This is organized play, and you don't get full GM powers. You may want them, but you don't have them. You can remove someone from your table for being disruptive. You can tell someone who wrote LE on their sheet that they can't play it and need to change (same as if they wrote Scribe Scroll). You cannot decide that you invent a one-way scale movement on which only a costly spell can fix. This is not what a PFS GM does. I'm actually angry right now, so I apologize for the tone, but you weaken the game, and I could see you ruining fun tables I've had in the past. I truly hope you haven't made things less fun for those for whom you've GMed.


Chris Mortika wrote:


James, you and I have different understandings of what's going on here. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it reads to me like you're asserting "The campaign bans Evil-aligned PCs, so it's just impossible to have one. Your player-character can sends souls to Asmodeus, torture children, do as he pleases, and he's not evil, because it's impossible."

What I'm saying is that you can no more make a PC evil as you can make them a bugbear. You are not empowered to do so.

You certainly can make rules at your table. In fact if they wanted to 'torture children' you could tell them simply no.

But what you cannot do is say 'well then your PC is now removed from the game', nor 'your Fighter character is now a warrior' or anything else that your heart might say is right, but the campaign guide doesn't give you.

Chris Mortika wrote:


Well, that's pretty much what I suggested, James. The table GM makes a ruling, and there's an appeals process up to Mark. Mark makes the final decision, and I've never asserted otherwise, but it's the GM that makes the first call.

Actually I believe it was more along the lines of 'if not me, who Mark?' and that yes you were saying that the table judge removes characters from the campaign until someone else puts them back in.

Now the process for handling cheating is laid out. The first thing it says is try to avoid it if possible. You remove them from your game if you must, and you forward the information on to Mark. Whatever he decides is his call there, and it would sadden me if I were to hear that he's had to deal with this more than once. But you do not remove them from the campaign (player or character) simply your table. The information is moved over to Mark who may or may not do anything.

Regardless, this does not give you carte blanche to remove PCs from the campaign, threaten do so, or anything else.

This discussion started over a faction mission that you said 'was evil' despite the fact that the scenario doesn't say that, list any consequences for following it, and only details penalties for not doing it.

In other words you seem to have taken it upon yourself to be another editor and campaign administrator. You are neither of these.

If you think that a faction mission is so egregious that it doesn't belong in PFS then refuse to run the module, perhaps start a discussion here about what faction missions should and should not be, but don't impose your views on your players with threats of removing their characters from play.

-James

Andoran *

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ninjaiguana wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

I don't want to create along drawn out new thread discussing what is and is not evil and how much evil should be considered for removal of a character from play.

What I'd like is to hear from Mark Moreland about whether table GM's, coordinators, and/or Venture-Captains even have the right to make that subjective call.

If they do, I think we need some documentation to add some objective guidelines for said removal.

This isn't a simple question of table variance that should be expected on many ambiguous rules issues.

This is an issue of someone completely losing their right to play their character. Which should not be up to the subjective whims of a GM, game-day coordinator, or venture captain.

Rather that rehash my opinion from the other thread here, I'll simply state that I agree and hit the FAQ button.

OK, almost. For clarification I will state that my concern is specifically with reference to faction missions and whether they should have alignment-changing ramifications, as outlined in the other thread.

I agree and also hit the FAQ button. This does need to get answered. I personally lean towards alignment being ignored in PFS. The self imposed alignment police can really ruin a game. I would like a ruling on can a "faction mission" be classified as a "evil" act.

** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

My character is my character, and I'll decide what alignment she is. Sometimes good people do bad things and maybe they have to struggle with that decision afterwards, but it doesn't stop them being good. Protecting our selves and our communities in a world as brutal and primitive as Golarion can require a degree of unpleasantness and we frequently have to trust those we accept as leaders.

My good characters will always try and give enemies a chance to explain their actions - maybe they were miseld, or magically compelled to attack us - but if there is nothing they can say to justify what they did then executing them is perfectly reasonable. Yes, my good characters will have qualms about it, maybe dream of a world where such actions aren't necessary, but they sure as hell don't turn evil for carrying out the execution. Unless they start to enjoy it of course...

Qadira ** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

When they add an alignment tracking grid to the chronicle sheets I'll start tracking it and paying attention if other people are tracking it. Then monks can get defrocked for being chaotic too many weeks in a row, druids can get defoliated for being too far from neutral, and players can get booted for being too evil. Until then this is all about as useful as writing "Character X really pissed off Drandle Dreng". Curious but not particularly additive to the PFS experience.


I'll point out that 'Don't be a Jerk' also applies to the DM

I note also that we are still waiting for Mark to comment on this

Andoran ***** Venture-Captain, Minnesota—St. Paul

DM Wellard wrote:

I'll point out that 'Don't be a Jerk' also applies to the DM

I note also that we are still waiting for Mark to comment on this

I wouldn't expect to hear from mark until next week at the earliest. I wouldn't be surprised if he has the week off, or has been mandated to do attend to his other Paizo duties that aren't PFS for a week or two.

Qadira **** Venture-Captain, Ireland—Belfast aka heretic

Dennis Baker wrote:

When they add an alignment tracking grid to the chronicle sheets I'll start tracking it and paying attention if other people are tracking it. Then monks can get defrocked for being chaotic too many weeks in a row, druids can get defoliated for being too far from neutral, and players can get booted for being too evil. Until then this is all about as useful as writing "Character X really pissed off Drandle Dreng". Curious but not particularly additive to the PFS experience.

Totally agree.

I would say that the introduction of the new factions means the issue of consequences of completing or not opposing e.g. evil faction missions for the likes of paladins is ripe for a review.

The idea of tracking alignment behaviour reminds of the bit in The Dead Gentlemen's brilliant 'The Gamers" movie after they had accidentally killed a party member:

Newmoon the Elf: [interrupting the Gamemaster] Wait, wait, wait! Cross the river. Shouldn't we like... uh... bury him. You know like, give him a proper funeral?
Nimble the Thief: I agree!
Ambrose: [rolling up a new character, looking up surprised] Thanks, guys!
Rogar, The Barbarian: Yeah, yeah! Dude! We get 15 piety points per level when we bury a party member, and since he was level six...
Nimble the Thief: That be like 90 points!
Rogar, The Barbarian: Buhyah!
Nimble the Thief: Buhyah!
Nimble the Thief, Rogar, The Barbarian: [Nimble highfives Rogar]
Newmoon the Elf: And that'll totally make up for that orphanage we burned down...

W

Osirion **

I'm personally okay with people playing "evil"- by which I mean, evil leaning characters, as long as they understand 2 things:

Firstly, in character. If they perform evil acts around good people. Punching an orphan in the face because he gave away their positions to the guards, bullying a small boy in front of a Venture Captain or mercilessly hacking up mercenaries in broad daylight are some examples from games, then they should be ready for the repercussions of those actions. Whether this comes from inside the party (which is also technically not allowed, but what stops the party from handing him in to the authorities or something similar if they (in character) are uncomfortable with that person. Or it could come from onlookers. I've had a level 2 character talk up and openly offend his venture captain in game, to the point where the venture captain picked him up and threw him off his boat (which took some serious offensive statements). Also, no matter what level you are, you can die to level 1 commoners, so beware!

Secondly, (and this doesn't really apply to a homegame) is the out-of-character stuff, at cons or things with people that you don't know very well yourself.
It's all very well saying out of character- "by the way, my character is a bit of a ****", but it can still make, certainly newer players, feel a bit uncomfortable. This is obviously a fair amount worse if the "evil" character is being so to other players, but some newer players may be uncomfortable and not want to speak up (even in character) against the characters evil actions.
Though with a good table this can lead to some really awesome role playing opportunities, so I think it could be up to the player to decide based on the table.

Matt

Andoran *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
Fozzy Hammer wrote:


Point me to text in the campaign rules that allows you to unilaterally remove a character from the campaign. If you cannot, then doing so is in itself cheating. If you feel a character should be removed from the campaign, then you should do so through campaign staff.

Fozzy This type of quote above is what drives me nutz. I can tell you that as a GM I allow players at my tables I trust. If there isn't a trust then I WILL remove the PERSON from the campaign at the store. As I am the event organizer at a LFGS with the trust of the owner and manager I am in my right to do so. I have never needed to do this ever! Show me where that is covered in the PFS guide? I will save you the time as it isn't in there and it is PERFECTLY legal.

Not everything is in a rules guide. Just because it isn't printed doesn't mean it can not happen. The GM are the line of defense to cover thing not covered by print. Paizo doesn't have the staff or time to answer emails of this GM killed my PC because of "X" or I was doing something questionable alignment wise and my PC was banned.


Darius Silverbolt wrote:
Fozzy Hammer wrote:


Point me to text in the campaign rules that allows you to unilaterally remove a character from the campaign. If you cannot, then doing so is in itself cheating. If you feel a character should be removed from the campaign, then you should do so through campaign staff.

Fozzy This type of quote above is what drives me nutz. I can tell you that as a GM I allow players at my tables I trust. If there isn't a trust then I WILL remove the PERSON from the campaign at the store. As I am the event organizer at a LFGS with the trust of the owner and manager I am in my right to do so. I have never needed to do this ever! Show me where that is covered in the PFS guide? I will save you the time as it isn't in there and it is PERFECTLY legal.

Not everything is in a rules guide. Just because it isn't printed doesn't mean it can not happen. The GM are the line of defense to cover thing not covered by print. Paizo doesn't have the staff or time to answer emails of this GM killed my PC because of "X" or I was doing something questionable alignment wise and my PC was banned.

Trust. Exactly.

Trust works both ways. Either the players can trust the GM not to be a dick, or they cannot. Either the GM can trust the players to do the same or they cannot.

When a Player oversteps the boundaries of "Don't be a jerk" or "Don't be a bully", then he should feel free to act out-of-game to address the problem. Conversely when a GM oversteps the same boundaries, then the player should also feel free to address the problem out-of-game.

It was not me that brought up the word cheating. I simply said that cheating goes both ways.

There is nothing in the Campaign documentation that allows a GM to unilaterally remove a character from the campaign. A player should feel free to completely ignore a GM who makes his own campaign rules.

If you have a problem player that you remove from your game, that is perfectly your right. Tell him to leave your table, or your store. If you have a problem character that you feel should not be in the campaign, you do not have the right to remove that character. That is beyond your authority. The most you can do is simply refuse to GM for that character.

Several months ago, I had a character concept that was entirely disturbing to one of several local GM's. He told me of his feelings, and out of respect for him, I chose never to play that character in any of the sessions that he GM'd. He did not have a right to tell me that the character could not be played, but he could ask that it not be played at his table.

Osirion **** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Dennis Baker wrote:

When they add an alignment tracking grid to the chronicle sheets I'll start tracking it and paying attention if other people are tracking it. Then monks can get defrocked for being chaotic too many weeks in a row, druids can get defoliated for being too far from neutral, and players can get booted for being too evil. Until then this is all about as useful as writing "Character X really pissed off Drandle Dreng". Curious but not particularly additive to the PFS experience.

+1

If this was legal behavior on the part of the GM there would be a place on the report form for "Character removed from campaign due to alignment change.

Osirion **** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Darius Silverbolt wrote:
Fozzy Hammer wrote:


Point me to text in the campaign rules that allows you to unilaterally remove a character from the campaign. If you cannot, then doing so is in itself cheating. If you feel a character should be removed from the campaign, then you should do so through campaign staff.

Fozzy This type of quote above is what drives me nutz. I can tell you that as a GM I allow players at my tables I trust. If there isn't a trust then I WILL remove the PERSON from the campaign at the store. As I am the event organizer at a LFGS with the trust of the owner and manager I am in my right to do so. I have never needed to do this ever! Show me where that is covered in the PFS guide? I will save you the time as it isn't in there and it is PERFECTLY legal.

Not everything is in a rules guide. Just because it isn't printed doesn't mean it can not happen. The GM are the line of defense to cover thing not covered by print. Paizo doesn't have the staff or time to answer emails of this GM killed my PC because of "X" or I was doing something questionable alignment wise and my PC was banned.

Of course you can 86 someone from your game or your store but that is not what we are talking about here.

We are talking about a GM permanently changing a character's alignment to ban him from the campaign as a whole. There is no basis for that core rules or in the guide to society play.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Alorha wrote:
There is another rule in the guide apart from no evil - Play play play.

Actually, to save Dragnmoon another 'head explodes' moment, the Play, Play, Play, rule has been removed from the Guide.

What I am hearing is that there are two camps. One seems to claim that you can do whatever you want, alignment (or other considerations) be damned. As long as the other players at the table don't object, you have carte blanche. The other camp says if you perform an evil act you shall be excommunicated and all knowledge of your PC be stricken from the hearts and minds of the population.

Why does it have to be sooo black and white? I believe that as a GM, one of my innumerable tasks is to provide a fun gaming experience within the confines of a sometimes imperfect rule-set. That means I have to evaluate every action, die roll, etc to determine its legality and implication on the game. In a system like that, you are always going to have disagreements on where the "line" is and when it is crossed.

I think that we somewhat agree that there are actions which could be construed as evil. I'm not going to argue the difference between being evil and evil acts. For me they are largely one and the same. Big parts of the equation are intent and circumstance. We cannot unilaterally rule a certain action is always evil or is never evil. Again, that is where the GM comes into play.

I agree that a table GM does not technically have the power to expel a character from play. But, IMHO, he does have the right (and responsibility) to note if a character is played in extreme contradiction to the listed alignment, regardless of whether that is good vs. evil or law vs. chaos.

IMO, the alignment system is not a choice by the player who then plays the PC in that manner. It is a reflection of the character's actions. To some extent, you probably shouldn't select an alignment until level 2 or 3 after the GM can observe your actions. But that is not reasonable in organized play.

In the end, it must be a collaboration between the player and the GM to determine what is "okay" play and what is not. If either party is being unreasonable, the issue can be escalated. Although, in my experience, it is extremely rare that it needs to come to that. As long as both sides is open to some compromise can be reached. I have seen the stoic GM just continue to say NO, to whatever the player says, claiming "the rules say this." I have also seen players who take the position of "Screw you. It's my character and I'll do whatever I want." Neither is good for the game.

Fozzy Hammer wrote:


Several months ago, I had a character concept that was entirely disturbing to one of several local GM's. He told me of his feelings, and out of respect for him, I chose never to play that character in any of the sessions that he GM'd. He did not have a right to tell me that the character could not be played, but he could ask that it not be played at his table.

Keep in mind that PFS is intended to exist in the PG-13 arena. That does not mean that you, the other players, and the GM cannot bump it to something more risque` but it should be mutual among all involved. You rarely know who you'll be playing with in a public venue and if your character concept is too disturbing, keep it in your home game. It does not belong in a public game. This could be construed as "Don't be a jerk." The GM often has to do this when the content of a scenario includes some "adult themes" and s/he has younger players at the table.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bob Jonquet wrote:
What I am hearing is that there are two camps. One seems to claim that you can do whatever you want, alignment (or other considerations) be damned. As long as the other players at the table don't object, you have carte blanche. The other camp says if you perform an evil act you shall be excommunicated and all knowledge of your PC be stricken from the hearts and minds of the population.

Actually, neither of these sides exist. There are two sides, but your descriptions are how each side paints the other, not where each side actually is. ;)


Bob Jonquet wrote:
Alorha wrote:
There is another rule in the guide apart from no evil - Play play play.

Actually, to save Dragnmoon another 'head explodes' moment, the Play, Play, Play, rule has been removed from the Guide.

What I am hearing is that there are two camps. One seems to claim that you can do whatever you want, alignment (or other considerations) be damned. As long as the other players at the table don't object, you have carte blanche. The other camp says if you perform an evil act you shall be excommunicated and all knowledge of your PC be stricken from the hearts and minds of the population.

Why does it have to be sooo black and white? I believe that as a GM, one of my innumerable tasks is to provide a fun gaming experience within the confines of a sometimes imperfect rule-set. That means I have to evaluate every action, die roll, etc to determine its legality and implication on the game. In a system like that, you are always going to have disagreements on where the "line" is and when it is crossed.

I think that we somewhat agree that there are actions which could be construed as evil. I'm not going to argue the difference between being evil and evil acts. For me they are largely one and the same. Big parts of the equation are intent and circumstance. We cannot unilaterally rule a certain action is always evil or is never evil. Again, that is where the GM comes into play.

I agree that a table GM does not technically have the power to expel a character from play. But, IMHO, he does have the right (and responsibility) to note if a character is played in extreme contradiction to the listed alignment, regardless of whether that is good vs. evil or law vs. chaos.

IMO, the alignment system is not a choice by the player who then plays the PC in that manner. It is a reflection of the character's actions. To some extent, you probably shouldn't select an alignment until level 2 or 3 after the GM can observe your actions. But that is not reasonable in organized play.

In the end, it must be a...

Actually, the only thing in your entire post that I disagree with is the PG-13 rating.

Given that a great deal of the game deals with dealing violence to living creatures, PG-13 is not an appropriate rating.

It always strikes me as odd that something in the American psyche feels that the creation of life is more disturbing than the destruction of life.

But in any case, my character wasn't really any more risque than half of the characters I've run across at convention tables. It was just that the combination of character traits and feats left a disturbing image in his head. I respected his wishes and have not run the character at his tables. Which is really the hear of "don't be a jerk".

** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
IMO, the alignment system is not a choice by the player who then plays the PC in that manner. It is a reflection of the character's actions. To some extent, you probably shouldn't select an alignment until level 2 or 3 after the GM can observe your actions. But that is not reasonable in organized play.

This is just treating the players like children (which is fair enough if they *are* children, but you know what I mean).

And if I'm unable to determine the alignment of my own character as a player, what right do I have to tell someone else what *their* character's alignment is when I GM for them? This idea that the GM is an all-powerful figure at the table is really out-dated.

EDIT: well, it makes no sense in an OP environment anyway, when the very next game might see the roles reversed and I'm now GMing the former GM. In the interests of consistency it makes far more sense to be light-handed on any judgement calls and just go with the flow.

I also don't believe anyone in this thread has asked to simply 'do whatever they want' regardless of other people's wishes. We all know its a communal game. Its just that there appears to be a profound disagreement on whether certain actions are acceptable or not. Specifically, is executing a helpless prisoner such an evil act that it risks changing your alignment? We're not talking about innocent little orphans here, we're talking about evil cultists, bandits and enemy agents that just tried to kill us.

If Paizo could rule that executing someone for a faction mission and killing prisoners captured on the battlefield are not considered evil and never risk changing your alignment then the bulk of the issue goes away.


Bob Jonquet wrote:


I agree that a table GM does not technically have the power to expel a character from play.

We agree here. It's not the place of the table GM to make this call.

Bob Jonquet wrote:

But, IMHO, he does have the right (and responsibility) to note if a character is played in extreme contradiction to the listed alignment, regardless of whether that is good vs. evil or law vs. chaos.

I disagree here. There is not an appropriate place for 'DM notes on play the DM didn't like' or instructions for him to do so on the player's chronicle sheet. Those instructions that went point by point in how to fill them out.

There is a place where the DM is instructed to place such things as curses, diseases and the like. Personally I would be annoyed if other GMs cluttered it up with things that they are not instructed to track. It would make my job of quickly looking over it to see if there are any no longer quick.

Perhaps we should also take it upon ourselves to track the actions relating to factions of the PCs? Chelliax faction member helped free slaves.... I see that they helped free slaves on a prior 'DM play note' from a prior chronicle and when he does it at my table I declare that he's no longer his old faction but is now Andorran and takes whatever losses based on that...

Does that sound like something we're supposed to do? Something that we have the responsibility to do?

This is all about what a GM is supposed to do, and some GMs that seem to cross that line and usurp administration calls.

It is one thing for a table GM to make sure that his table runs for everyone's enjoyment. If a young child is sitting at your table and the scenario or another PC has themes that you are not comfortable with them there, then you (and they) adjust things. Likewise if you feel that something is so out of whack (the LG Paladin wants the party Wizard to bind Demons for the party to slaughter helpless orphans) then you just deny it at the table.

In other words, you run your table and attempt to let everyone enjoy themselves.

But what you don't do is threaten players with removal of either their characters or themselves from the campaign because you don't like their actions. You don't say 'I'm going to write this down like a curse, and if enough people do so then you're removed, etc' because that would be lying and frankly, trying to bully the player. Its neither the proper atmosphere or actions that I would expect a PFS GM to encourage or be making.

If a player is playing his character 'wrong' what should you do? Frankly I'd first say that you respect that its his character and not yours whether you are the table GM or a fellow player. But if its SO egregious that you feel you MUST do something, then contact the administration and then they can elect whether they want to do anything or simply to say 'thank you for GMing for us/being part of our campaign'. Just as if you were a player in a home campaign you could not insist that the DM make another player's character change alignment because you disagreed with how they were playing that character. You could respectfully bring it up to them, but its their call and certainly not yours.

-James


Fozzy Hammer wrote:

Actually, the only thing in your entire post that I disagree with is the PG-13 rating.

Given that a great deal of the game deals with dealing violence to living creatures, PG-13 is not an appropriate rating.

It always strikes me as odd that something in the American psyche feels that the creation of life is more disturbing than the destruction of life.

But in any case, my character wasn't really any more risque than half of the characters I've run across at convention tables. It was just that the combination of character traits and feats left a disturbing image in his head. I respected his wishes and have not run the character at his tables. Which is really the hear of "don't be a jerk".

Note that the PG-13 stance is not a by-GM/VC concept. It's a core assumption of PFS and part of the writing guidelines for scenarios:

Quote:
2. Understand that Pathfinder Society is not a good-aligned organization, nor is it evil. Also understand that evil characters are not allowed in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. Also understand that all scenarios must be PG-13.

In my opinion, the debates raging right now would be less of a problem if the scenarios and faction missions stuck more closely to this rating. Of course, that will also limit those wanting to play the morally gray roles. I'm not saying it's the "best" option, or the option PFS must take. I'm saying it's the path that would lead to less conflict with regard to alignment. So we understand what PG-13 means:

MPAA.ORG wrote:
PG-13 — Parents Strongly Cautioned. Some Material May Be Inappropriate For Children Under 13. A PG-13 rating is a sterner warning by the Rating Board to parents to determine whether their children under age 13 should view the motion picture, as some material might not be suited for them. A PG-13 motion picture may go beyond the PG rating in theme, violence, nudity, sensuality, language, adult activities or other elements, but does not reach the restricted R category. The theme of the motion picture by itself will not result in a rating greater than PG-13, although depictions of activities related to a mature theme may result in a restricted rating for the motion picture. Any drug use will initially require at least a PG-13 rating. More than brief nudity will require at least a PG-13 rating, but such nudity in a PG-13 rated motion picture generally will not be sexually oriented. There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence. A motion picture’s single use of one of the harsher sexually-derived words, though only as an expletive, initially requires at least a PG-13 rating. More than one such expletive requires an R rating, as must even one of those words used in a sexual context. The Rating Board nevertheless may rate such a motion picture PG-13 if, based on a special vote by a two-thirds majority, the Raters feel that most American parents would believe that a PG-13 rating is appropriate because of the context or manner in which the words are used or because the use of those words in the motion picture is inconspicuous.

The major relevant portion for this, I believe, is "There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence." If a player, GM, or author is depicting this sort of violence, it's in conflict with the PG-13 rating sought by PFS.


erian_7 wrote:
Fozzy Hammer wrote:

Actually, the only thing in your entire post that I disagree with is the PG-13 rating.

Given that a great deal of the game deals with dealing violence to living creatures, PG-13 is not an appropriate rating.

It always strikes me as odd that something in the American psyche feels that the creation of life is more disturbing than the destruction of life.

But in any case, my character wasn't really any more risque than half of the characters I've run across at convention tables. It was just that the combination of character traits and feats left a disturbing image in his head. I respected his wishes and have not run the character at his tables. Which is really the hear of "don't be a jerk".

Note that the PG-13 stance is not a by-GM/VC concept. It's a core assumption of PFS and part of the writing guidelines for scenarios:

Quote:
2. Understand that Pathfinder Society is not a good-aligned organization, nor is it evil. Also understand that evil characters are not allowed in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. Also understand that all scenarios must be PG-13.

In my opinion, the debates raging right now would be less of a problem if the scenarios and faction missions stuck more closely to this rating. Of course, that will also limit those wanting to play the morally gray roles. I'm not saying it's the "best" option, or the option PFS must take. I'm saying it's the path that would lead to less conflict with regard to alignment. So we understand what PG-13 means:

MPAA.ORG wrote:
PG-13 — Parents Strongly Cautioned. Some Material May Be Inappropriate For Children Under 13. A PG-13 rating is a sterner warning by the Rating Board to parents to determine whether their children under age 13 should view the motion picture, as some material might not be suited for them. A PG-13 motion picture may go beyond the PG rating in theme, violence, nudity, sensuality, language, adult activities or other elements, but does
...

I think we're talking about the same thing. I think generally speaking, killing other individuals crosses into R (persistent or intense violence) territory.

Thank you for pointing out the writers guidelines!


Fozzy Hammer wrote:

I think we're talking about the same thing. I think generally speaking, killing other individuals crosses into R (persistent or intense violence) territory.

Thank you for pointing out the writers guidelines!

Sure thing. Note that it would be possible to allow lethal combat in a PG-13 movie, even combat that results in death. What you wouldn't see is graphic depiction of this combat, lingering on the violent aspects/wounds, but rather perhaps a sword fight where the combatants parry back and forth for a bit, then the bad guy gets stabbed and falls to the floor. You would not see the victor do something like cut off a body part or mutilate/torture a living person. I've gathered that may be what the Sczarni mission required? If so, it seems to be in clear violation of the actual PFS writing guidelines.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

erian_7 wrote:
The major relevant portion for this, I believe, is "There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence." If a player, GM, or author is depicting this sort of violence, it's in conflict with the PG-13 rating sought by PFS.

I don't think this is an issue. PG-13 can depict some violence and even death, just not in a graphic manner. Most GM's resolve combat simply with the die rolls with little to no descriptions. It is almost clinical.

We can debate whether that is the "right" way to play, but it is the truth nonetheless. So, IMO, the standard scenario would still be PG-13.

EDIT--I hate forum ninja's ;-)


And another thing to note--sometimes folks disagree with the MPAA rating for a movie. For me, as an example, the PG-13 rating for Batman: The Dark Knight is ludicrous. The disturbing depiction of the Joker alone would knock this into NC-17 territory in my view. Of course, when you've got the money/clout/etc. to get the rating you want in order to make more money...

So, it's not exactly an iron-clad system, but for me it does at least give some guidance as to the level of violence/drugs/sex/etc. that are appropriate for PFS.


erian_7 wrote:

And another thing to note--sometimes folks disagree with the MPAA rating for a movie. For me, as an example, the PG-13 rating for Batman: The Dark Knight is ludicrous. The disturbing depiction of the Joker alone would knock this into NC-17 territory in my view. Of course, when you've got the money/clout/etc. to get the rating you want in order to make more money...

So, it's not exactly an iron-clad system, but for me it does at least give some guidance as to the level of violence/drugs/sex/etc. that are appropriate for PFS.

Truth.

*

Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

I'm just wondering why we're debating this at all, too much time on our hands? Did something actually happen at Gencon, or is this all hypothetical?

If something happenned at Gencon and someone's PC killed 1000 children and burned down a city of angels, please let me know. Thank you.


Jason S wrote:
Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

I'm just wondering why we're debating this at all, too much time on our hands? Did something actually happen at Gencon, or is this all hypothetical?

If something happenned at Gencon and someone's PC killed 1000 children and burned down a city of angels, please let me know. Thank you.

Well, angels can be kind of douchey, you know.

And those children. They can get kind of annoying...

But no. What sparked it was a comment in another thread where a GM stated that he viewed some faction goals as traps, and that should a PC actually complete that goal, he would make a notation on that PC's chronicle that the PC had committed an evil act and risked removal from the campaign.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Jason S wrote:
Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

I'm just wondering why we're debating this at all, too much time on our hands? Did something actually happen at Gencon, or is this all hypothetical?

If something happenned at Gencon and someone's PC killed 1000 children and burned down a city of angels, please let me know. Thank you.

Actually kind of the opposite. No one has contested that a problem player needs to be reigned in (though some parties in the discussion seem to think that their opponents are claiming that). The issue sparking the debate is more about a PC being satisfactorily NON-evil (to use your hyperbole, they save the orphans and angels), but then complete a faction mission that the GM deems "evil" and have that marked on their chronicle, bringing them a step closer to an alignment change.

I don't know whether or not it actually happened at GenCon.

EDIT: Ninja'd.

Osirion **** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Fozzy Hammer wrote:
Jason S wrote:
Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

I'm just wondering why we're debating this at all, too much time on our hands? Did something actually happen at Gencon, or is this all hypothetical?

If something happenned at Gencon and someone's PC killed 1000 children and burned down a city of angels, please let me know. Thank you.

Well, angels can be kind of douchey, you know.

And those children. They can get kind of annoying...

But no. What sparked it was a comment in another thread where a GM stated that he viewed some faction goals as traps, and that should a PC actually complete that goal, he would make a notation on that PC's chronicle that the PC had committed an evil act and risked removal from the campaign.

It was also said that gms are entitled to go through record sheets and look for other faction missions they disapprove of and use them to change the character's alignment banning him from the campaign permanently.

Qadira ** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Bob Jonquet wrote:
What I am hearing is that there are two camps. One seems to claim that you can do whatever you want, alignment (or other considerations) be damned. As long as the other players at the table don't object, you have carte blanche. The other camp says if you perform an evil act you shall be excommunicated and all knowledge of your PC be stricken from the hearts and minds of the population.

I don't think anyone is claiming you can do whatever you want.

If you think a player is running his character as genuinely evil a GM should talk to him, ask him to stop. If he persists the GM can and should ask him to leave the table. If a paladin player has clearly violated his vows then it's reasonable to put that down on his chronicle.

It is this idea of giving out 'evil points' at a con, or other random PFS event that bothers people. The whole idea is basically tracking an un-quantifiable factor on a chart with no scale and assigning negative consequences to it. If you don't like the way a player is running his character, tell him. Writing something negative down on a chronicle sheet is the sort of passive aggressive thing that just antagonizes people.

Edit: Also, the idea that players should be punished for accomplishing a faction mission is pretty high on the WTF? list.

Qadira *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Alorha wrote:
I'm sorry, people acting as the alignment police greatly, and I mean seriously, weaken the game.

+1

About the only punishment I would give for an evil act is to a paladin who really does only need one act to lose his powers. Note that this does NOT include banning his character; he can continue to play his warrior class until he gets an atonement. I would also consider it for a good cleric or chaotic/lawful clerics, but the act would have to be more severe than the paladin. A cleric of sarenrae burning down a village of innocents might just lose their powers too.

In the end the game is fun and someone having a bad day and causing them to take stupid actions in game shouldn't ruin their entire experience with PFS. Remember that in a normal home game where "no evil" is allowed would always get the chance to talk to the DM and rectify the problem. In PFS that's a no go with there being hundreds of DMs. Let's just remember the don't be a jerk rule, enforce that, and make sure everyone has fun at a PFS table!


Dennis Baker wrote:

If you think a player is running his character as genuinely evil a GM should talk to him, ask him to stop. If he persists the GM can and should ask him to leave the table. If a paladin player has clearly violated his vows then it's reasonable to put that down on his chronicle.

It is this idea of giving out 'evil points' at a con, or other random PFS event that bothers people. The whole idea is basically tracking an un-quantifiable factor on a chart with no scale and assigning negative consequences to it. If you don't like the way a player is running his character, tell him. Writing something negative down on a chronicle sheet is the sort of passive aggressive thing that just antagonizes people.

Edit: Also, the idea that players should be punished for accomplishing a faction mission is pretty high on the WTF? list.

+1

Dennis is right and we should listen to him. After all, he wrote the adventure that started the debate that this debate spun off from.

Grand Lodge ***

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Guy Humual wrote:

I posted this in another thread but I believe it has some value here as well:

Alignments have no place in PFS in my opinion.

If that's true, neither do paladins. Clerics are not nearly as alignment driven as Paladins are, they may be Faith driven, but that's a horse of a different stripe.

151 to 200 of 210 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | next > last >>
Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder Society® / General Discussion / Removing a character from play for being "Evil" All Messageboards

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.