Hobgoblin Lieutenant

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It'd be potentially possible to tackle this and the "boring feats" issue in one go: provide more of a scaling chassis.

I know the idea of a stacking Lego-like class structure is appealing, and this sounds like a step back, but. Some compromise (paths?) could solve both issues. Balanced, it may be possible to have cake and eat it, too.

That said...the game just feels off, to me. Watching and hoping, here.

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Quandary wrote:
ErichAD wrote:

Maybe this is the question they're referring to?

I would prefer no potency on weapons and armor at all. Attack roll bonuses and AC bonuses would come from item quality, damage would come from my character's inherent martial ability, and any necessary saving throw bonuses could come from elsewhere.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure I answered that in negative, although I have posted here how weapon damage dice increases SHOULD be scaled based on character Level/Proficiency (die TYPE based on weapon type). I don't have problem with attack bonuses and SOME damage coming from weapon magic (flaming, other effects), and I don't have problem with armor magic boosting AC, and I don't strongly care either way but would be happy with normal enhancement Save bonuses being tied to character.

But that question was vague & convoluted enough I didn't fully understand what it was talking about, and couldn't specifically address each issue individually, so I'm pretty sure I answered negative to over-all question. I'm really horrified if Paizo is using that poll question to determine design.

After reading that question, it seems like the only safe answer IS negative, because it could be read as "you're taking magic items away, entirely" on one end. Plus, it is a number of questions put into one, as others have said.

It's incredibly easy to write leading questions by mistake. or unclear ones. Here are a few:

Q version A: Would you prefer characters to be more powerful on their own, or would you prefer them to rely on magic items for that power?

Q version B: Would you prefer to see less powerful MIs?

Q version C: Would you like to see less reliance on MIs?

Q version D: ...

Perhaps the question could be presented again? How would you phrase it?

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Druids being able to shapechange has always been a core part of the class. You could scale the abilities they get from wild shape for balance, but let them have the duration. Flying forms, for example,happening at a later level. Greater fly speed happening at a yet greater level. Having them spend feats to gain overall wildshape abilities is another. Nerfing their spell list is yet another, and I believe Natural Spell is gone, isn't it?

Limit what they can do when transformed, unless they take a feat to do x thing.

There are balances fixes. Let them roleplay. :p

Basically, all they're saying is, "I want to be the spirit of nature, inhabiting the form of an owl, because that is what being a druid means to me." The owl doesn't need all of those abilities at once, and for free--but it should let be to be an owl.

Death by Hummingbird was silly. It's something to learn from, to be sure--but, we don't want to hurt folks in the meantime.

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When 2e moved to a model of no or few built-in class features, and instead, "class feats," it meant that the nice yet less interesting stuff you'd get as part of background progression became...unexciting feats. That you had to take.

The previous model, 1e, had some exciting but also "less interesting" (yet important) options built in as part of automatic class features. This let the less exciting options fade "into the class" as background noise. Helpful, but still background noise.

Taking those less interesting options out and making them a forced choice frustrating and less interesting. A player cared about interesting options like wildshape, but perhaps less about "hey, you now get +2 versus fae magic."

That one change alone might make things feel bland, but let's push it further.

In 1e, archetypes offered unique flavoring along a concept. Archetypes (often times) exchanged for "less interesting" options. If the archetype replaced a more interesting feature (like wildshape), then it (the archetype) needed to be more interesting to compete.

In 2e, everything is leveled out. The "boring" options aren't automatic. They're right out there with the cool stuff, so things can feel just...

...I want to like 2e. I really, really do. I'm sure the devs are tired of me at this point. I don't want to be a tiring person, and I have respect for what they do. I appreciate we don't see eye to eye.

PF2e hasn't inspired me to play 2e, and I hate saying that. What it's instead inspired me to do is pick up and play other systems. I just spent about $70 on books for a new RPG, for example, and have subscribed to some of their podcasts.

The change, from "small, piddly-sounding (though not piddly in practice)" abilities from being more in the background to being made into a "forced choice" and brought into the foreground could be part of that feeling.

I'm not sure if it would help, but perhaps if 2e yoinked out several of those less interesting feats and repackaged them as part of a "Class Paths" it might feel more exciting. Yes, this might make a person a little more locked in, but the Path wouldn't need to give abilities every level, and you could still offer choices.

We're essentially talking about what "feels right," here, in the end. The engineer versus the artist. Yes, Model X might be more efficient than Model X.3, but it feels more dull. The two need to get along.

In fact, Paths might solve the "generic flavor" issue that creeps in, in more than one way. Much like how folks have called for 2+ ancestry feats early on to feel as though they have more definition to their character, I'd just have the Paths be an "in addition to" system. You'd need to do some cleanup of the system, but hey.

Anyhow, no. You aren't imagining it.

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There are a lot of threats on arcane casting. SoP is a popular addition to PF1. What would you have thought if it had been brought in as a core part of PF2?

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Poor dwarves. I've always had problems getting people to play them due to looks.

Having more dwarven art could help others visualize how diverse dwarves can be.

Many will make a character also, after being inspired by a particular artwork.

You make a good point for many reasons. Thank you for this analysis.

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Silas Hawkwinter wrote:
Mark is there design space for adding PF1 style Smite Evil in PF2?

My theory is they "offloaded" smite damage to the monster.

Instead of the paladin doing a fixed or predictable amount, that amount is now controlled by the GM behind the screen--it's tied invisibly to the monster statistic.

I suspect this was done because of some complaints in PFS of the paladin smite being strong versus BBEGs.

Mind, this does remove player agency. :/

The weakness to Good in the Bestiary stats, then, is effectively the new smite. The GM in PF2 sets how effective they want the paladin to be per creature or challenge.

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Don't forget the Warded feat. It just needs rolled into the base ability.

A player looking to play a LoH focused paladin will naturally gravitate towards LoH feats. These feats don't grant +SP, though. To gain more uses, they need to take non-LoH feats or multiclass. This reminds me of the old monk description versus its mechanics, in a way. It's a little of that.

For Blade of Justice, smite, etc: in general, some "smite" ability that was an effect on the paladin would be nice. If it matters, there's thematic issues with divine wrath being able to be flicked away by a disarm.

Reactive vs active flavor options.

Nice to have: Give the paladin Aura of Courage as a class feature, instead of a feat. This creates a natural launch point for other aura feats to be added in. Auras on paladins have always been popular, and the concept fits the support, tank, team player aspect in the current mechanics.

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Fuzzypaws wrote:
MuddyVolcano wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:

If the Paladin remains a class, I agree with not nerfing it but instead fixing it, and in general with bringing every class up to the level of the cleric.

Move the Righteous Ally ability to first level. For the weapon version, strip out the critical specialization bonus as a default ability and make it a feat upgrade. For the shield version, specify either that you choose a new shield each day (like the weapon version has text for) or that a busted shield ally reforms each morning. For the companion version, no changes, this just lets them get a companion at 1st like the druid and Ranger.

You get a spell point power based on which Ally you chose. Paladins who chose the other two allies can still pick up this power with their 1st level feat, gaining more spell points in the process. Weapon ally grants Smite, which maybe can spend a spell point to increase weapon potency by +1 but the extra damage is good and positive. Shield ally can grant a better Retributitive Strike, which because it will now cost a spell point can be beefed up so it grants a free Step (making it easier to actually use) and doesn't take an attack penalty. Companion ally can grant Lay on Hands.

Like bard and druid, pallies who feat into another "path's" first level power can keep taking more feats later based on that power. This is obvious, it increases customization generally.

Paladins have a ton of reaction-based abilities and need some way to get extra reactions. Maybe it's a static +1 reaction/turn, maybe it's baked into the feat trees for each reaction-using ability as a bonus benefit, maybe it's a spell point power that lets you spend 1 spell point to use an extra Paladin reaction. However it happens, there needs to be some way to do this.


A. Smite shouldn't be disarmable. That leads to a villain just being able to flick away divine wrath.
B. Warded Touch needs merged with the base ability. Much of the feedback seems to


In PF1e, smite was an effect on the paladin. If the villain flicked away a sword, the paladin was far from defenseless. It switched just as easily to a table leg.

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Fuzzypaws wrote:

If the Paladin remains a class, I agree with not nerfing it but instead fixing it, and in general with bringing every class up to the level of the cleric.

Move the Righteous Ally ability to first level. For the weapon version, strip out the critical specialization bonus as a default ability and make it a feat upgrade. For the shield version, specify either that you choose a new shield each day (like the weapon version has text for) or that a busted shield ally reforms each morning. For the companion version, no changes, this just lets them get a companion at 1st like the druid and Ranger.

You get a spell point power based on which Ally you chose. Paladins who chose the other two allies can still pick up this power with their 1st level feat, gaining more spell points in the process. Weapon ally grants Smite, which maybe can spend a spell point to increase weapon potency by +1 but the extra damage is good and positive. Shield ally can grant a better Retributitive Strike, which because it will now cost a spell point can be beefed up so it grants a free Step (making it easier to actually use) and doesn't take an attack penalty. Companion ally can grant Lay on Hands.

Like bard and druid, pallies who feat into another "path's" first level power can keep taking more feats later based on that power. This is obvious, it increases customization generally.

Paladins have a ton of reaction-based abilities and need some way to get extra reactions. Maybe it's a static +1 reaction/turn, maybe it's baked into the feat trees for each reaction-using ability as a bonus benefit, maybe it's a spell point power that lets you spend 1 spell point to use an extra Paladin reaction. However it happens, there needs to be some way to do this.


A. Smite shouldn't be disarmable. That leads to a villain just being able to flick away divine wrath.
B. Warded Touch needs merged with the base ability. Much of the feedback seems to point to this.
C. Give Aura of Courage as a base class ability--as a means to then offer future class feats that build on the initial paladinic aura concept. Auras have always been popular.

And well, at this point I'd rather have the paladin in a later book. Put Zealot/Alignment Champion in core so that folks stop fighting, each side gets their options, and the flavor of the class gets maintained.

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At this point, given all of the yelling, I'd be for removing paladin from the Core, and replacing it with an alignments Champion/Zealot class. Then, release paladin in a later book for folks who want that specific flavor.

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There's no reason to take it. I mean heck, look at its traits. There's many, many reasons NOT to take it.

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I'm enjoying the 3 action system so far. There are some things though, like shifting grip, that would feel so much better as a minor action, if:

* Minor actions existed
* Minor actions were limited to 1/turn

Does this fit with others' experience playing? Would it improve the "feel" of play?

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Soulboundx wrote:

Wow this way more response than I expected! Clearly a contentious issue!

I think one of the biggest points talked about is being a defender rather than striker as compared to 1E, and I feel it is a missed point. They could easily be a defender in 1E as they were reliable and feat buildable. This edition they are not reliable as they were.

Now, let us discuss the Paladin as a defender and striker from 1E to 2E. I think the biggest point that can be made about such roles is Smite Evil, Feats like Step-Up, Divine Grace, Lay on hands and SPELLS

In Pathfinder 1, Paladins smote as an offensive option of reliability, and defensive option of divine grace, they were RELIABLE. Far beyond fighters Paladins were reliable. They warded against magic, and resisted such attempts to control so they could do what needs to be done. Lay on hands was reliable, a swift action to tank for oneself or a single action for others. If you wanted to be a reliable defender feats like Step Up were available and AoO were DEFAULT. Last but definitely not least was spell options. Far beyond this a paladin could be a defender with these alone, taking half damage for an ally and having wards and control effects!

So here is why I am disappointed with Retributive strike, lay on hands, and the actions paladins have as is in 2E. First of all the action economy of Lay on Hands and having a Somatic Component completely changes it from a reliable, defender, in combat heal to a ineffective action cost. Smite is no longer reliable way to support your damage necessities. Retributive strike is not a reliable way to reduce ally damage or protect them. Divine Grace is not a reliable way for the Paladin to pull through the effects that would falter others. They have 1 reaction folks, They can only chose between Grace and Retributive when that wizard throws a fireball or control spell. They can only smite in "defense." Part of a defender is also being able to look at the enemy needing killing and chosing to face it head on while it runs and avoids...

You've expressed this so well.

Thank you.

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Rysky, I think you're saying some important things. I don't think everyone's as far off though, as it appears. Mind, I haven't done this in some time, but I'm going to try.

In the 1970s, a man named Wiess did an experiment involving a user's access to predictability and control, and how that affected their stress response. He took a series of rats and did the following:
* He placed rats into a cage and administered no shock
* He placed rats into a cage, then gave them a warning before administering a shock
* He placed rats into a cage, then gave them no warning before administering a shock

The rats who received shocks received the same number of shocks; only their circumstances were different (a warning or no warning).

The results were that the rats that were unable to predict impending electric shock showed significantly greater stomach ulceration. This was opposed to the rats that received exactly the same amount of electric shock but were warned that it was about to be delivered.

The point of this isn't to say that gamers are rats. That would be silly and insulting. It also isn't to argue that a player should have control over their character at all times.

The point is more, for something Highly Important to a player, such as the Signature Ability of their character's class, that it is important for the player to have a little more agency than usual.

This is why we've seen the response, and stress, with Sneak Attack for over a decade. Sneak Attack in 3.x has been poorly designed when it comes to player agency and we've seen frustration from players as a result. That design isn't Paizo's fault; it's just a function of inheritance. They've done what they can to reduce for example, the things that SA is immune to (which importantly, increases player agency).

My wish is more for the paladin not to enter into that space that SA's inhabited; it isn't saying that RS is a bad ability. It's only bad if it's the Signature Ability, if that makes sense.

If RS is the Signature Ability, then a player's agency is removed three and four times. The first is whether they are giving a choice to build their PC around it (their choice/not their choice), the GM's agency and control of the field (whether enemies attack them or their allies, and how the GM chooses their positioning), and their teams' agency (how their teammates choose their positioning).

This is also not saying that D&D/PF/etc. aren't team games. They are. The importance here is the /degree of agency in a key feature/. Removing agency on three separate points, as above, is too much. Removing choice takes us back to the experiment by Weiss and the resulting stress response. (His isn't the only one; I'm mostly quoting it because it's the most familiar.)

It also isn't saying that a GM shouldn't create tension in a story. A GM creates tension by adjusting the amount of control characters have, carefully. They also have the lever of predictability. There may be traps on the stairs, for example. Darkness may be cast over the manor. All of these are in the GM's toolbox.

Managed control vs stress in a scene can lend itself to story. However, for a character's key ability to continually be subject to the shifting grounds made by both GM *and* team mates, it's nigh on frustrating, and shifts fun away from the game.

That isn't fun. It's different, as a Signature Ability, than a one-off or singular choice among many, such as a fireball cast by a mage.

This also isn't to say that abilities shouldn't fail occasionally.

However, contrast RS and classic 3.x SA with something like, for example, the cavalier's Challenge ability. Even though it was usable a limited number of times per day, it can end up feeling more satisfying than the rogue's SA.

The comparison of SA to Challenge shows us also, that the frustration is not as tied to damage (often touted) as it is to player agency. On a normal hit, SA may ultimately deal more damage. However, Challenge gives the player greater agency--while dealing with the other elements the adventure provides.

We can see the results of this frustration in the feat chains surrounding the use of SA, the number of forum posts about 'how to guarantee SA', the anger over creatures being 'flat-out immune' and even Paizo's response in decreasing those immunities. For SA, specifically.

We see nothing like that for Challenge, or at least, we see it much less often.

It comes down to agency. The silence surrounding Challenge speaks just as loudly as the loud, decades-long clamour over a player's access to SA.

Anyhow, I apologize for going on, here. I hope it's helpful in some way. I realize, too, that I didn't bring in playtest data. I'm less sure the point of this is playtest data, though--it's more a discussion of user studies, and what we've seen from the 3.x SA, and I hope at least, it's been done respectfully.

Thank you for reading.

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HWalsh wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Taenia wrote:
My major concern about the Paladin smite is its invalidation by moving. Oh you hit me because i hit your friend? I will just move around him and hit him with you way over there, so sorry by by. And this doesn't include GMs that will just immediately meta and move their creatures in such away to prevent the ability from working. Since the Paladin doesn't have an AoO, it means that a single action can negate their main class ability.

How this actually plays out in-game will be interesting to note, as it’s not just the enemy, the Paladin, and a motionless ally. It could be a lot of enemies, it could be a big enemy, and you have (hopefully) more than one ally doing their own thing. The enemies might not have the freedoms to do the above roundabout. The Ally in question might be a Barbarian or Fighter up there alongside the Paladin.

There’s plenty of scenarios to work through, and yes while there’s scenarios where it doesn’t work there’s plenty where it does.

It does work very well if the Paladin is flanking a target with a Rogue and if the Paladin has Shield Wall and AoO. It is a lot of set up but it is pretty much a guarantee that someone is getting hit with something.


How many years have been spent on rogue players trying to ensure they get control of their SA? The last thing I'd want is to turn the paladin into the new rogue. Not in terms of being sneaky, but in terms of "I don't want whether I can use my core ability to be so much in control of the GM AND my other party members."

Whether that's a fair assessment or not, or whether the rogue (or here, paladin) has other things to bring to the table aside from SA isn't the point. It's the perception and ergo, frustration, surrounding player agency and a core class ability.

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A little history, here.

When it first published, the PF 1e playtest paladin was an update from the 3.5 paladin. However, in comparison to other classes, it engendered similar responses to what we're seeing, now.

(Edit: Here's what it looked like, for historical/comparison purposes.)

The reaction at the time was much like we see, today, though the playtest is being handled by a more experienced team (the 1e playtest was like the wild west, and I felt really sorry for Paizo staff).

At the start of the 1e test, it felt like the paladin was left behind.

It was not like that by the end of the playtest.

But, it was the efforts of the community and Paizo staff together that made the final paladin what it is in 1e. That effort was truly dedicated, and monumental. Please keep speaking up!

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My suspicion has been that a MC fighter/cleric would make a stronger paladin. I don't really want this to be true, mind.

It might be worth it though, running a mc fighter/cleric through scenarios, and then a paladin.

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PF2e's OGL might solve this issue.

Imagine a site like the Archives of Nethys. Now imagine if in that site, a dedicated gamer(s) went through and tagged each numeric entry involving proficiency or DC. Include a reporting mechanism, so that visitors could report inconsistencies.

Users of the site could then use a coded toggle switch, to switch between versions. This would be something like the E6 of 3.x, just fan maintained and made.

I wouldn't expect Paizo to keep up with something like this, but it's well within the realm of the fandom.

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Reactions from the table so far:

* Loving the streamlined chassis
* Concerned about individual elements
* Concerned for the "busyness" of the layout
* Concern for decision paralysis

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Slurmalyst wrote:

Lay on Hands has a Somatic component, which gives it the Manipulate trait.

The Manipulate trait provokes attacks of opportunity (from the apparent minority of creatures that now have that ability).

So for practical purposes, Warded Touch reads "Lay on Hands no longer provokes attacks of opportunity".

Paladins are martial characters. I'm...disappointed that their main "battle healing" ability causes AoOs. Unlike most casters, paladins expect to be in the middle of the field.

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Is there a way to remove concepts like these? The old CL -3, Animal Companion is Druid -3, or CL = L/2 added a layer of complication for new players.

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Secret Wizard wrote:


Through this post, I'll talk about a phenomenon that is observable in 5E. I'll posit this phenomenon is a detriment to the game, both in terms of thematics and mechanics; and I'll foray into how PF2E is tackling it and where there may be danger.

What is the STR/DEX Dichotomy in 5E?

The STR/DEX Dichotomy is a character development property of 5E.

Due to the game mechanics, there is little to no incentive to pick up STR if your character is DEX-based; simultaneously, STR-based characters receive minimal returns from investments in DEX.

This leads to STR-based characters who keep minimal, sometimes negative, DEX, and viceversa.

The one exception is found where characters are mandated through class features to avoid doing so – the Barbarian forces the player to use medium armor and make STR-based attacks if they want to fully enjoy its class features.

Why is the STR/DEX Dichotomy bad for the game?

There are two facets of the game which I consider to be negatively impacted by it:

  • Thematically: Having light, nimble characters with no sinew is a whiff; street rats, acrobats, brawlers – all of them require muscle to climb, run, jump, dodge, deflect, pry open, and so forth. Encouraging them to keep 8 STR makes them more of a game construct than an individual in a fantasy setting. The opposite case is also true – while hulking STR-balls with no speed are as conceivable as DEX-amassing mousers, most real warriors of all stripes should have picked up some motor coordination with their training.

  • Mechanically: When STR or DEX are more valuable than the other, the baseline for characters created with the less optimal attribute should be lower, and it should make anyone who is being relatively pragmatic on character creation disregard one of the main core attributes as a viable option.

What went wrong in 5E?

5E did not attempt to splinter the Dichotomy with its...

I like most of these points, and have to agree with others that the ACP adjustment is probably the favorite out of the bunch. Providing and offering different flavors and benefits for the two stats is a great way to go. "Dex to damage" just makes one feel like the other, and is a lazy approach. With the customization focus of PF2, it makes sense that we'd apply the same mindset to DEX and STR and say hey, 'let's let you be different people, and that's okay. Oh, and let's give you cool options you can pick from'.

So, +1 for the ACP option, and let's keep discussing the others, as well.

Thank you for making the post.

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Okay. So I like this, but in particular because it suggests the spell lists will be balanced against one another.

Which suggests you may could swap them out more easily to create new things.

So...how would you use say, the alchemist chassis and make an artificer? I can see reflavoring alchemy, but beyond that?

In a bit of a bind, here. My players love their steampunk powered armor style artificers with all the options. :D

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I'm a little mixed on this.

1. Are you locked into a singlular action type during Exploration Mode?
2. Is it something the GM announces? This feels MMOish. >.<

This is one aspect that I would really like to see during play.

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Just the act of having some basic consumables NOT cost Resonance might be the boost those items need to spur their purchase. In my own experience, players tend to like their gold. Consumables tend to get pushed a little further down the list.

I appreciate the OP's reasoned/thoughtful approach to this. I'm curious how it will play out, myself.

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I'm less fond of it being a Reaction, but only because it interferes with an iconic style of play.

What's more iconic than a paladin reaching out to save someone? Be it the old Paladin's Sacrifice spell or some of the shield tricks we've read about in PF2e, such acts will take Reactions. This makes sense--the paladin's Reacting to a friend in danger.

What does this mean, though?

It means that before, the paladin could reach out and defend someone--and would do so because of their code, because their faith helped them withstand it. This combination made this type of play survivable and desirable. This filled a niche and was stylistically amazing to play!

I understand the wont for balance, but this looks like it would destroy that iconic style.

I'll be looking at: How can we address this? I'm afraid it might mean adding 'add-on' lines to different Paladin Sacrifice/Reactive abilities that say, 'these other things activate.' That seems messy, but I just don't know.

Second, AC in PF1 was one of the worst defenses in terms of surviving at upper levels. That's what made Paladin healing, and UnBarb's temporary HP so fantastic. ...I guess barring seeing how AC works in PF2, I'm a little concerned for the armor.

Fighters and rogues were the ones sucking up healing resources in PF1, in the upper levels.

All classes need options. It's more that "just AC as a defense" was kinda bad.

Anyhow, sorry for this coming across as grumpy. It's been a really bad month.

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The Raven Black wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:

Purity has quite negative connotations to me as a buzzword for cleanse the impure violently or even lethally. Where impure mostly means anyone that does not fit the norm of purity

I think we should steer well away from it

Okay, how is that, exactly? Purity is a sense of absolution, usually in a positive manner (which has been twisted due to historical atrocities, but those have no bearing here).

I mean, you can say it doesn't make particular sense, but calling it Superstition is an equal misnomer.

I beg to differ. Those RL atrocities could have quite an impact on would-be customers and bystanders

I think it better to just not open this can of worms

Edit : I feel that my words might sound harsh and accusing, which is not my intent. I just wish to convey the deep unease I personally feel with using the word Purity

Perhaps because throughout history there've been arguments for "pure bloodlines," "pure races" and so on that have been a sort of calling-cry behind more violent movements. The phrase made me uneasy, also.

It isn't not liking the word--but it does strike the mind and remind of things like cleansings, the "pure race" and so on.

Also, as pervasive as magic is, it might make sense to have a barbarian that only exorcises certain /types/ of magic. To keep that from being OP and everyone choosing the same mechanically advantageous schools, schools might need to be presented in pairs, or have carefully thought out penalties.

For example, under a focused system, barbarians might choose to stand against evocation in order to save vs fireball--then still get protection bonuses from abjuration magic. So, balance.

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Secret Wizard wrote:

It's all up to interpretation.

Take Robin Hood.

Is he Chaotic Good because he's a Libertarian hero, someone who spurns taxation from an oppressive regime?

Or is he Chaotic Good because he's a Socialist hero, someone who wishes to undermine an unfair hegemony to redistribute to the poor?

So no, I would not put Chaos vs Law as Collectivism vs Individualism.

To me, Chaos vs Law is simpler: the Lawful will suffer a detriment to their interests, or the interests of those they care for, in the name of an abstract conceit. The Chaotic would not.

Of course there is room for mercy, but it is for a Lawful creature to give unto others, NEVER unto itself or those that they consider to be intrinsically tangled with them.

For example, the Lawful Evil ambitious secret broker that cares deeply about the advancement of his nation. If they discover that their actions have undermined their nation, they will pay a burden of conscience.

The Chaotic character will always place the personal and material above the abstract.

That does not imply that the Chaotic is less collectivist, just less abstract about it.


And yet...to not put you down at all, there are a million interpretations of these same scenarios.

I developed an 'alignment policy' once. It basically laid out some broad examples for L & C, then said, it is up to that person. Otherwise, folks fought over what it meant. No one either, was exactly wrong.

Many of them touched on things you said, but viewed it from the opposite angle.

Mind, I've seen the same thing echo'd in these forums, from reading other posters. I'm not putting you down; more saying yes, you've got a vision. I have one too, and so does Bob, or Mary. Along L & C though, those have trouble lining up.

Iron Matt expressed it better than I would.

A part of the issue is that the terms have to be explained to new players; they aren't intuitive. I'd rather just get to playing, you know?

A part of the issue is that the terms are outdated.

A part of the issue is that we're all 'just human.'

...but updating the dictionary would help, you know?

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Deadmanwalking wrote:
MuddyVolcano wrote:
I really wouldn't mind a terminology switch. When it comes down to it, folks play L & C fairly similarly, even when in our hearts, we want them to be different, you know?

This isn't actually my experience. My groups tend toward Chaotic Alignments, with some Neutral Alignments thrown in and those can play fairly similarly sometimes. Every Lawful character I've seen played has been distinctly different from that norm, however.

MuddyVolcano wrote:
They're just old terminologies, I guess? Also, I think we as humans want to see certain traits in them that we ourselves like. So, it colors them.
Well sure, but that's gonna happen regardless of what terms you use. It's human nature.

I like to think it'd happen a little less with terminology that matches modern language. >.>

And yeah, I get you. I have this image of Chaos and Law in my head. I've learned here though, that everyone's interpretation is very different, when discussion comes out. Even at my own tables.

It's at least, also what I've picked up through multithreaded forum entries lately.

Mind, maybe you can bring some insight to that. I'm referring to the multitude of posts we've had, and threads, that've come up like so many gardens, haha.

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CrystalSeas wrote:

Most of your issues with high level play rest on the assumption that the math is broken (1).

3) Most campaigns end by 10-12: Perhaps the broken math is the cause
4) The ‘vast majority’ of games take place in the level 1-12 range: Perhaps the broken math is the cause. (and btw, this is exactly the same statement as 3)

1. Low-level modules sell better than high-level ones (significantly so): Perhaps the broken math is the cause.
2. The 6th installment of an AP typically sells far less than installments 1-3. Perhaps the broken math is the cause (and btw, this is exactly the same statement as 1)
4. Pathfinder Society tops out in the level 12-13 range: Perhaps the broken math is the cause

does it make sense from a business standpoint to devote ½ your development effort and page count to something that (for example’s sake) only 20% of your customers will use? Perhaps the broken math is the cause
If Product A is selling more than Product B, barring trying to recoup costs, most companies try to sell the hell out of A rather than continuing to devote resources to Product B.Perhaps the broken math is the cause.

If you're a company that sees broken math as the primary cause for a lot of the problems with a product, why not try to fix the broken math and solve all those other problems at the same time?

If you fix the broken math, look at how many of the issues you cite disappear.

This, yes. Let me add a few layers, and a few propositions. Maybe they'll help; I'm not sure.

1. Gamers *like to keep their characters*, and *develop their characters*. From this standpoint, high level play is /very/ attractive. It's just that before, the math breaks down. Fix the math, and people enjoy their PCs, longer.

2. If we look at the pyramid effect, of fewer high level PCs and more lower ones, that's also due to math. But, that can be easily addressed.

A. Switch downtime costs and rewards to be based off of the encounter-awards system. This can let players choose to level their PCs faster at different points in their career, which will up their higher level numbers--and therefore number of players.

B. Offer a level as a Society reward, which has a similar effect as #2, plus opens up a new way to reward players (I hope they do #2 anyway, because it's just that much cleaner in other respects.)

C. Do like the old days, and just let folks start with a LX PC for certain scenarios. This is an old tradition, or "sacred cow." Haha. :D

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AnimatedPaper wrote:
MuddyVolcano wrote:

I like where this is going. I understand we don't have the details of it just yet. Some part of me though, is saying--what if we tied this to encounter rules?

This both simplifies it, and would offer characters new and varied ways to advance, no matter their story. What doesn't a master craftsman learn from the forge? Or a bard from their street performance?

I know we don't have the details, yet. I know that. So, some of what I share below may well be covered, or unneeded. I apologize in advance and offer: this is wholly off the cuff.

So go with me here. If we break down the PF1e rules, there's essentially set rewards per encounter, with level-based rewards. I suspect that PF2e will have the same, because it's still a level-based system, yeah?

I had a little trouble following your post, but assuming I got it in the end, you might be on to something. I imagine exploration mode will involve various skill checks and skill challenges akin to the social combat, research, and wilderness exploration rules from Ultimate Intrigue and Ultimate Wilderness. Those challenges might well result in XP, it would be interesting if downtime likewise did.

Parenthetically, that was the one disappointing thing I saw on this blog. I would rather Gather Information be a skill challenge measured in hours during exploration (assuming I understand the three modes correctly), not days during downtime. But its hardly something I'm going to make waves over.

Haha, yeah. I'm not doing well at explaining, here. I'll try again?

Assume the following to be true:
1. In PF1e, it's possible to break award numbers down to a "Per-encounter" basis. Say, 1 encounter for at 4th level PC at their CR is worth about 300 xp and 287.5 gold.
2. Assume that PF2e can be broken down similarly. Say that 1 encounter for a 4th level PC at their CR would be worth 100 XP and 300 gold (I'm guessing and rounding for simplicity; we don't have the numbers.)

Therefore, couldn't we take Downtime Activity and award it based on encounter numbers?

We don't want 1 Downtime Activity to = 1 Encounter, exactly. That would also be boring. So, we would do something like:

1 Downtime Activity = 1/4th Encounter Award

This fractionalizing also lets a GM set "Downtime Activity Slots." This "Slots" mechanic lets us account for task complexity, resources, and so on. But, knowing how many "Downtime Activity Slots" are available, PCs could then arrange their Downtime Activity however they saw fit.

This would be an example:

A GM could say, "You have roughly enough time for 3 Downtime Activity Slots," basing that number off of things like:
* Resources available
* Time available
* How much the GM wants the PCs to be able to level

Either way, the PCs can then decide to fill those "Slots" with whatever activities appropriate to their PCs. Making a sword might require 2 slots.

All of this would mean that rewards for Downtime are based on existing Encounter Rules, because it's all based on the Encounter Tables in the end.

In our example, assuming that:
* A 4th level PC completing a standard encounter at their CR would earn 100 XP and 300 gold (I'm guessing; we don't have the numbers.)
* 1 Downtime Activity = 1/4th Encounter Award
* 3 "Slots" are available, as declared by the GM

...each of these 4th level PCs could earn up to 75 XP and 150 gold, by doing *whatever Downtime Activities were storied to their PC*. That is, it rewards whatever concept you want to develop, from opera performer to whatever. This benefit could be themed as a discount on the crafted item, money to purchase it. I'm still working on that, but it is pretty flexible. :3

A GM who didn't want to award specific numbers could just award slots in sets of 4, or whichever. So, 4 Downtime Activities = 1 Encounter.

This doesn't preclude having pre-reqs for certain Downtime Activities, or for skill in an Activity reducing its slot cost. A PC could also choose to "spend" more slots to get a better result (such as in Gathering Information, crafting a better item, writing a better play, etc.). It all awards up to the limit set by the GM/adventure, but obviously a skilled PC would get more out of fewer slots.

Another idea is that the rulebook could include rules for increasing/decreasing slot costs due to: Aid, Resources, Task Complexity (and these would end up being simple adjustments, such as +1 slot, +2 slots, or -1 slot, -2 slots). This is actually pretty easy; it's all based on Encounter Tables.

The benefit here is that it makes Downtime flexible, it reduces rulecount, and it ties it all into the same reward system. Most of all, it makes how you adventure, and what you do on that adventure to advance as a character and in your story very, very flexible. A system like this could be its own Mode, or layered on top of and within, other Modes.

...I may not be explaining well. Maybe someone can give it a try?

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I like where this is going. I understand we don't have the details of it just yet. Some part of me though, is saying--what if we tied this to encounter rules?

This both simplifies it, and would offer characters new and varied ways to advance, no matter their story. What doesn't a master craftsman learn from the forge? Or a bard from their street performance?

I know we don't have the details, yet. I know that. So, some of what I share below may well be covered, or unneeded. I apologize in advance and offer: this is wholly off the cuff.

So go with me here. If we break down the PF1e rules, there's essentially set rewards per encounter, with level-based rewards. I suspect that PF2e will have the same, because it's still a level-based system, yeah?

1. To start, tie quality to skill and level. This isn't a change. This rule, however, addresses both story and balance.

Anyone might swing a sword, but it's the fighter who really, truly knows how to use it. Likewise, anyone might swing a hammer, but it's the master blacksmith who is the artesian.

2. Secondly, all Downtime Activities **offer rewards** that scale around Encounter Tables. For purposes of discussion, say 1 Activity Slot (or whatever we'd call them) is worth 1/4th of an Encounter Award. Obviously, this is just a working number.

This means that PCs would earn experience AND gold, based on existing scales.

However, it would also let the GM set aside a number of "floating Activity Slots" that can be snatched up via Downtime Activities. This has further story benefits, which I'll explore, below. Maybe you can think of some, too.

3. Third, Activity Slots costs might be adjusted based on:
* Complexity (crafting a sword might require 2 Activity Slots at minimum)
* Access to additional help or resources

The above general rules could be presented in a table, as guidelines to reduce or increase slot costs by a +1 or -1, +2 or -2, and so on. We'd need to play with/test this.

4. By using the encounter tables as the base, awards auto-level to the character, and Downtime is more tightly integrated into how PCs level, anyway.

5. Downtime rewards could be storied/set as a discount on the item, or a bonus-when-purchasing. I'm a little fuzzy on the details here, but the framework's present. :D

In effect, the above just means that PCs can advance in even more ways. Shoot, even the 1e PHB talked about receiving awards from roleplay. With the different A La Modes, why not standardize how to earn XP/GP across them, and truly let PCs level through story, however that story happens to be told?

Example: The party hits a break, and the GM declares that they have enough Downtime for 3 Activity Slots. This number could be based, story-wise, on time available, resources, and so on.

The characters then, have 3 "Activity Slots" they can fill. Crafting a sword would take 2 of those. Rewards, remember, (or item discounts) are based around those Encounter Tables.

Examples with Napkin Numbers
So, I just realized this could be simplified, further. Here's an example with numbers.

Say in the new system, a standard encounter at Level 5 is worth 100 XP and 400 gold (every level is 1,000 xp, remember).

A standard Downtime Award might be worth 25 XP and 100 gold at that same level. A GM would then say, "You have up to 3 Downtime Slots available."

This means that a PC could combine whatever Downtime they wanted to participate in, up to that number of Slots, and gain up to 75 XP and 300 gold from it.

This ties Downtime into the overall system, and makes Modes more interchangeable; a scene could then, be composed of any Mode and PCs still learn/advance from it.

Why do this?
1. The time it takes to accomplish an Activity becomes flexible according to the story, and how much the GM wants/needs to allow advancement at that point in the tale.
2. We cut down the number of individualized rules significantly.
3. It works no matter the downtime, and could even work in a "living world" setting.
4. It awards developing your PC in their own way, however that PC plays or functions.
5. Rewards automatically scale based on existing rules.
6. More possibilities of "layering" adventures. It would be easy to toss a few Downtime Slots along the middle of adventures.
7. It includes cooperation/aid and resource rules right off the bat, just by adjusting slot costs.

Anyhow, I know we don't have all the details, so I apologize if I've repeated things, here. This is more inspired by, I suppose?

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I had a thought, and wanted to toss it y'all's way. Is there any way you could see, based on what we know so far, to elegantly draw some parallels between a fighter's weapon capability in a weapon type, and subsequent bonus effects on a critical success, and an evocation specialist or diviner specialist and what they might get out of certain iconic spells?

I'm not sure if this is coming across well. It just seems to me that an evoker should be able to get a "critical success" on a fireball, in a way that was less likely for other specialists, and a diviner should get more from a critical on scrying.

It seems like this, combined with some of the flexibility we've seen in are like heal and harm, could offer flavorful and iconic flexibility, as well as a means to better define and reward the arcane schools.

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I like the flexibility!

How will societies respond to this growth of concealed casting? It seems as though they should--something that responds to the increased presence of Resonance in the area or a person.

I could see nobles buying indicators for their guards (not unlike radiation indicators that common workers wear in industry), that would change to black if the guard's resonance was increased--a warning sign that magic was involved, though not where or what. More advanced ones could turn a certain color, to indicate the school of magic. Other indicators might only respond to certain schools.

Some sort of "resonance indicator powder" that blackened with resonance was increased in an area, such as a court room or villain's hall, could be seen as useful.

This reminds me of another question that I've had come up. If we assume adepts are a thing, and hedge wizards--there would more minor magic users about the world. What would someone with a bit of means but not a lot use to protect themselves against magic?

Will we see more "basic protection charms"?

Obviously, there are nobles, but--"commoner protections" exist everywhere in classic storytelling. A widower might be cautious and have invested to purchase a charm against being swayed by any of the collectors showing up to pounce her property. A youth being given a charm before heading off into the woods that night.

These seem like simple things that wouldn't need a lot of rules at their core. Others might be more creative and powerful--such as it might be a charm type that's difficult to overcome unless an additional action is used when casting.

I'd like to see "commoner's options" out there if there is space for it. Just a few lines, sketched. Maybe it's a place for the expanded alchemy, who knows.

One way to mitigate the power and effect that magic may have (and has had throughout 3.x/PF's history) is to provide creative challenges--but challenges that make sense, storywise. For example, the wizard might suspect the guards are wearing a few protection charms, or could ID them with a check, and may need to work with the rogue to get around that, or just be smarter in what she casts.

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gustavo iglesias wrote:
The question was who could be a CG Paladin. Obviously, those would be different than the LG ones.

Going by many of the posts above--from Greystone's onwards--there doesn't seem to be much of a difference in how actual play has evolved.

Things are to a point of, "give them the same Code." Which, given the essence of the paladin--there would be no breaking the Code, no "different shades of leniency" based on someone's personal beliefs.

The differences being pointed out/argued for now are minor nuance. I mean, if the main difference is, "Law just means more laws," then that is hardly a difference and is something of a false statement when broken down. The number of laws will forcibly scale as the size and complexity of a society does. There are more resources to manage, more people to take care of. :/ Small company versus large company, which makes it a natural effect of scale.

If we look at dedication to laws and oaths, it's been demonstrated in this thread how ordered, and dedicated chaotic followers are to these ideals and structures.

Heartfelt examples given from the Bestiaries.

Law cannot be slavish followers in contrast: again, with PCs completely rebuilding themselves once they cross a border. It turns the alignment into a zombie. o.O

...I am at a loss any more to see the differences, or argue for them in actual play, if these are what we go with. Allowing a CG paladin, while adding the needed: there is no difference in leniency in how the Code is followed, based on personal belief," only places a nail in the coffin of an old ideal even further.

Which may be no bad thing, overall.

And, we would not want the Code to be more lenient for one alignment over the other. To have an "easier route" would make a lesser paladin.

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So...things I have learned from this thread. I suppose the main thing I've learned from this thread is that that as it has evolved, there is no functional difference between "Law" and "Chaos" and how they're played ingame.

I know that my saying this might prompt the immediate response, that immediate WANT to say, "but there is!" And that's natural. We want to point out the opposite, to look for flaws, to preserve a tradition.

...but think on it, yeah?

Chaos, apparently and as attested to by posters and Bestiary entries, has laws. Law has laws, and yet neither are defined defined by what's legal (otherwise, a PC's alignment changes when they cross a border, or you could simply 'outlaw evil' and other silly things). Either alignment, in the view of posters, may make broad, binding oaths and complicated arrangements. They have broad convictions, and intricate societies with levels of law and structure. Mercy, honor, and hope are not exclusive to either axis. .

..take a look at the thread.

I can't find a functional difference when you get into it. If there is one, it's so fine as to be a mouse's whisker.

Perhaps...there may be by now bare shades of difference, but those mostly lie in personal preference. Those mostly lie in phrases like, "I had a bad experience with organized religion" or, "I had a situation with my GM, and I didn't want to be told how to play my character; it wasn't that my character didn't respect the laws or order of where they were. It was more a personal, and OOC thing at the table."

I know the immediate response is: that can't be true! ...but read, reread. This is what folks are saying, about how they play at their table, and so on. Difference is just this...OOC preference. Functionally, as it's evolved, there is none.

This doesn't mean that there used to be though, you know?

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Deadmanwalking wrote:

If you present some other aspect of Chaos I can't easily see as a useful methodology a CE person could readily utilize, I'm perfectly happy to focus on that as well.

That hasn't happened yet.

...I *knew* you'd do that. And oh no. Nonononono. Not with a ten foot pole. XD Even if ladders are technically cheaper.

Your definitions, your understanding are specific in a different way than some of what myself or others who have shared, though there is some overlap. We need to start with your understanding and build forward and expand. Otherwise we risk that endless cycle of one person or maybe two proposing ideas and the other saying no, that does not fit.

I cannot read your mind, to put it another way. Ideas I put forward will not make you happy.

If chaos has only the one good thing as it's what, end goal? ... Maybe end goal is better than "means." ... That is an issue, but hey. Issues are just problems that haven't been solved yet.

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djdust wrote:
Last week I finally finished and submitted my grad school thesis paper. Only took me 6 months :|

Wait, wait. Only 6 months?! Wait, wait.

Are you secretly Superman. I must know.

djdust wrote:

Its a Masters of Art Therapy and Counseling program, so case studies from my internship working with adults with developmental disabilities and dual diagnoses, as well as a personal study tying together the practice of blind-contour drawing and zen meditation.

EDIT: Yes.

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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Perhaps that is some of the disconnect here?

Both sides want to save everyone they can, but Chaotic is the Harder path because *some people don't want to be saved*.

I think that right there is the difference.

A Chaotic Good paladin needs to somehow sway that subset of folks back over to 'having value and worth' when their lives are 'worthless', and do it without overtly demanding it or insisting on it.

There is no Harder path just as there is no best Good

Good > Chaos here, just as Good > Law for the LG Paladin's dilemna

I humbly accept this synposis as has been fleshed out in this thread, for it is elegant yet simple, and covers the bases as far as why others may have issues with more than one type of 'Paladin'.

Rephrase Law into Ordered, and that's another step forward.

One of the concerns over wanting a CG option is law being equated to legal, and players being concerned over that stricture, whether it was a GM telling them how to play, or something else. If that artificial barrier were removed--you'd see more cordiality, and fewer arguments, table and forumside.

And I would hope, more and varied exploration of what those two axis could be.

One concern I have here is that a CG holy warrior option would push that interpretation even further, and solidify the two camps.

The other is that through that, yes, it's one part of what would water down the original paladin's concept. It's the old: if I force x into X, then y becomes Y sort of thing.

Do I say this is a "there should never be a holy warrior for CG" type of thing? No. It's an issue brought forward, though, that would be great to have addressed.

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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Perhaps that is some of the disconnect here?

Both sides want to save everyone they can, but Chaotic is the Harder path because *some people don't want to be saved*.

I think that right there is the difference.

A Chaotic Good paladin needs to somehow sway that subset of folks back over to 'having value and worth' when their lives are 'worthless', and do it without overtly demanding it or insisting on it.

A big concern is that if Chaos becomes All About Freedom, it can become too much of an all-defining concept and end up pigeonholing the chaotic holy warrior concept. Anyhow, I've blathered enough today, so here is some awesomeness from 2008 that I just dug up!

Ross Byers wrote:

A bit...inspired by the Alignments of Pastry thread, I wanted to clear up what appears to be a common misconception (in my opinion) about Good and Evil.

Good is Hard.

Let me repeat that. Good is Hard.

What makes Good hard? Let's go back to basics. At its simplest, Evil is about being willing to hurt others to help yourself. Good, as Evil's opposite, is about being willing to hurt yourself to help others. Evil is selfish, Good is selfless.

Good is also more than 'not doing Evil'. That's Neutral. We equate Good with purity because it is so very easy to lose.

Not stealing? That's easy.
Giving my stuff away to make someone else's life better? That's hard.
Restraining myself from stabbing someone because I don't like them? That's easy.
Risking (or giving!) my life to save some guy I don't even know? That's really hard.

It's difficult enough to remain Good as a monk in a monastery, where temptation is minimized: there will always be the ability to say 'screw this' to celibacy and bland food and working long hours at potentially backbreaking labor for no personal reward.

Good is hard.

It's more difficult in civilization proper, even surrounded by Good-to-Neutral neighbors. The Prisoner's Dilemma and the Tragedy of the Commons tell us that you do better personally by worrying about yourself first. The orphanage isn't going to close just because you personally don't donate. You earned that money fair and square.

Good is hard.

Being Good as an Adventurer is even harder because, in addition to 'killing things and taking their stuff' being hard to justify in the first place, all of a sudden you're running into all the moral dilemmas that shopkeepers get to avoid. When does killing orcs turn from self-defense into genocide? What do you do with an Evil creature that has surrendered? Am I doing more Good by keeping the magical doodad than selling it to a rich idiot and tithing the proceeds?

Good is hard.

I think there is a certain tendency for people to think 'I consider myself a good person, therefore I'm Good.', and thus lowering the bar. Everyone thinks they're doing the 'right' thing, even Evil ones. That is what makes the alignments different. Most people are Neutral.

Likewise, I've seen comments to the effect of charm person isn't an [Evil] spell, therefore it is fine to use on everyone, all the time. Play-doh is labelled non-toxic, that doesn't mean its food. Charming a person is harm, same as stabbing them with a sword (swords aren't Evil) or lighting them on fire (neither are fireballs and alchemist's fire.) Charming a guard into letting you pass is certainly better than killing them, but it isn't harmless.

Good is hard.

Nor is killing an Evil being always Good: if it were, Good and Evil might as well be Team Red and Team Blue. They are opposites, but they are not perfect mirrors of each other. Paladins aren't Good because they kill Evil things. They are good because they put their lives on the line to protect those who cannot defend themselves. They get a reputation for being Lawful Stupid because they don't always take the expedient path to rooting out Evil, but that is because they know the easy way is not always the Good way, and fear the slippery slope.

Good is hard.

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The Raven Black wrote:

Freedom is excellent for Chaotic but it does not necessarily ends in Good

I propose Hope as the most important cause for CG

...you know. I really like that. Let's expand on it, and some other concepts?

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Xerres wrote:
MuddyVolcano wrote:
...this is, as an aside, why I'd love to see a CG good warrior class built from the ground up, with mobility, teleport, and so on to leap them across the battlefield. In that way, its mechanics from the ground up have the opportunity to explore multiple definitions. It also avoids the "carbon copy of the paladin, but different" than the antipaladin kinda was. The anti had some neat abilities, but always felt a little cheap bc of that association (even though other elements were awesome), and I don't want that, here.

Not saying that's bad to want, or not something interesting to shoot for, but I do actually like the idea that a Chaotic class wouldn't be pushed away from Heavy Armor and Tanking.

Monks are Lawful, but they are the 'No Armor, Moving Free' masters (when magic isn't overshadowing everything, so they get a good three levels of it). So I don't think it follows that Chaotic is to be more focused on the moving and slippity bippities. I'd be happy with the Paladin focus on protecting others not changing between Good alignments.

Teleporting light armor stick em up being an archetype for Paladin would be great though. And I wouldn't be torn up if Chaotic was light armor by default, I just prefer they be as capable of tanking in heavy armor as the Lawfuls.

Mobile doesn't mean without armor. >.> That's a misconception put forward by a certain Mr. Twain that we've never gotten over.

They deserve more than an archetype, anyhow. An archetype would be kinda sad, because those sorts of abilities are both different and varied enough that an entire class could and should be made from them.

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johnlocke90 wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

I feel like the 9 alignments are so iconic as to be memetic (c.f. alignment chart memes) that we shouldn't bother renaming them. If we want to make the law/chaos axis less muddy somehow, that would be a positive change.

Like I, for one, have an extremely difficult time differentiating between an NG PC and a CG PC without looking at their character sheets since in practice both are "do good and ignore the rules when it suits you".

I have the same issue distinguishing a LG character who relies on a personal code vs a CG PC.

Updating Law into Order would update the game terminology in a way that aligns with tradition, and removes misunderstandings. It brings Pathfinder up to date with current literary and fantasy tradition, and brings us more into the realm of Order versus Chaos. Or Stability versus Instability, or Static versus Creative.

Modern literature is more likely to reference Order/Chaos rather than Law/Chaos. The latter is by now, an outdated term for newer audiences. It is one more thing that needs sat down and explained.

Law as-phrased seems as though it focuses exclusively on the realms of LAWyers and legal realms, which isn't the case. A player shouldn't need to change their character based on arbitrary rules. That was never intended, but LAWyer, you know?

As one poster wrote above, this nod to current literary tradition would address at least a third of concerns, which is just overall, worthwhile as heck. I'd argue at least half.


Ross Byers made a great post on it which inspired a lot of this.

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Bardess wrote:
Maybe we should discard the words "Lawful" and "Chaotic" and replace them with "obedient to external rules" and "obedient to internal rules".

Yet, it's more than that, and saying it is "only" that does a disservice to both ends of the axis.

We can't say that Order (Law) is only obedience to outside rules with no internal inspiration, just as we can't say that Chaos is only inside rules. It ignores other important elements, such as group well being versus individual, change versus consistency, and so on.

I'm concerned that this is the direction that these "Codes" are pushing. I enjoy your thoughtfulness, and yet--this is a very, very real concern.

The Chaos Codes submitted by and large? Strike me as very, very NG because things appear to be blurring into one another. That is:

* Focusing on one element of L & C, rather than multiples
* Focusing on preferred traits, ...as though this concept of mercy or humility is only a Chaotic trait.

This overall just furthers the idea tha perhaps the L-C axis shouldn't be part of PF in the future, as "things I identify with or prefer over the other" seem more closely ascribed to it, and in that vein things become overly squishy. This isn't meant as an insult--it's a respectful concern that has been buzzing about for some time, and I hope it will be seen in that vein.

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I'd still love to see this. Much of the confusion over "Law" seems to be whether it:
* Means your alignment changes when you cross borders (no)
* Law meaning Legal and only Legal

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It's not a journey.
Its a destination.

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Ckorik wrote:

People are getting too convoluted in this - because the current code has nothing to do with being lawful.

Does the anti-paldin have a code? Yes. This is RAW now - so nothing about being 'chaotic' says you can't follow a code, rules as written, historically set in stone.

Does the current Paladin code say anything about committing a chaotic act? No - that language was removed with the 3.x code update.

There is nothing inherent to the code as written that precludes a NG or Chaotic good knight from following it. Nothing. Because as written the code is about two things: Being good, and being 'honorable'. As written a chaotic knight could follow the current Paladin code and never violate alignment rules. This is the problem people are having and wrapping themselves up over trying to explain - if you go back to 2nd ed. or 1st you can at least say they can't commit a 'chaotic act' - whatever that is?

So what is a 'chaotic act'? I'm going out on a limb and saying perhaps leaving choices up to randomness? Flipping a coin to make a choice rather than using your own judgment?

Someone else posted an example of following orders if a village was attacked - I submit that the 'stay and follow orders' isn't Lawful good at all - but Lawful neutral. Following the law regardless of the consequences is LN - it puts orders above things like good or evil.

Hey, there. You know, I was starting to slide this or that way and then went back and reread the antipaladin code. The antipaladin code is very self-interpretive focused, very self-goal focused, and flexible.

The antipaladin opposes the paladin on every axis, you know? That includes Chaos and Law, not just Good and Evil. So, they'd be a good source.

You'd need to change the paladin Code to be mutable and self-interpretive, based on what we have in the antipaladin. It would also focus on the chaotic's personal goals, based on what we've seen.

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There are threads like this elsewhere. I'd like to see if we could make a gamer one. :D

Guidelines: Share vanilla, gently amusing, or everyday things about your gamerlife.

Life can seem hectic, or sometimes caught up in toxicity. The intent of this thread is to not to deny those moments, but to share the chill of others and that can be...benign gamerlife.


Today, I realized it was humid and that my precious gaming books might suffer. So, I carried a dehimidifier into the office and pressed the power button. My books are now happy, or I imagine they are. In the meantime, my office sounds as though it is inhabited by a rather large bumblebee.

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