So, Index III is really bad, and I think it's really weird that it's really bad, but it's also not all that difficult to understand why it's really bad.
Index III is doing this thing where J.C. Staff are absolutely hell-bent on spending no more than three episodes per book of the novel, no matter how badly doing so messes with the pacing of the show. I could understand doing that for volume 14 because nothing really happened in it besides a boring antagonist that no one liked (Terra) dying and Accelerator blowing things up in France. And I guess Itsuwa was also there. But it doesn't make any sense to put so little effort into doing a good job with the first arc of the new season. Index II was eight years ago. That's a really long time for fans of the series to have to wait and J.C. Staff couldn't project any harder just how much they want to speed through the source material so they can make something that makes money instead. Volume 15, while largely self-contained, has the most going on it out of any single book in the entire series. It's starting to show the cracks in Academy City as well as the beginning of GROUP breaking free of the Board of Directors's control. And almost everything of relevance to that arc except the fights was cut out (and even the fights were made pretty underwhelming). And volume 16. Oh my god. If any arc of the series deserved to be at least four episodes, it was Rules of Nature. Doing the whole Acqua fight in only three episodes is nothing short of a tragedy. In any just universe, the British Magic Civil War arc would be the major conflict taking up the majority of the second cour of a 24-episode season. The end of the Old Testament saga of the novel series deserves to be its own 24-episode season, not hastily
So, Index III is bad largely because of its pacing. But pacing problems have been part of the Index anime from the very beginning. Remember ten years ago in season 1, when J.C. Staff spent six episodes adapting volume 1, one more episode that went into adapting the Sisters Arc where they introduced Accelerator? Or when they cut out subplots from volumes 2 and 4, one of the three stories from volume 5 (all of which were decisions I ultimately agree with), and then hastily shoved that story into the beginning of season 2 (which I completely disagree with)? Or hen they put the adaptation of SS1 at the end of season 2 instead of making the better decision of putting it at the beginning of season 3? Or how about how both seasons of Railgun are half a meandering adaptation of an arc of the manga with a bunch of filler, with the second half being original content that's worse than what came before it?
So, yeah, Raildexverse anime have pacing problems, but usually those pacing problems involve spending too many episodes on some material, not too few. In the end, Index and Railgun are still J.C. Staff anime, so I can't say I hadn't set my expectations fairly low. But to fall below even those low expectations is just... disappointing.
The Artificer is one of the most complicated classes in d20. By far, the Artificer's most important class feature is Craft Reserve. In 3.5, crafting a magic item requires an expenditure of XP. Craft Reserve is a pool of points the Artificer spends instead of or in addition to XP to craft items. Points of Craft Reserve are not carried over between levels. If you don't use them, you lose them. Don't worry about taking Item Creation feats. The Artificer gains them automatically. Item Creation lets you craft an item if you don't know the spells it requires to craft it, so long as you make a fairly easy Use Magic Device check. Artificer Knowledge, Artisan Bonus and Disable Trap are pretty self-explanatory in terms of what they do.
Level 5 is the game-changer for Artificers, because of Retain Essence. Retain Essence lets you take a magic item, break it down and add the XP used to craft that item to your Craft Reserve. What this means is that every single magic item in the entire game is useful to an Artificer. This completely breaks the clause on Craft Reserve about points not carrying over between levels. To the Artificer, every magic item is a battery for storing Craft Reserve. The party no longer sells magic items they don't need anymore. Just give them to the Artificer and let them turn the obsolete junk into something new.
Your key responsibility as an Artificer is to jack your Use Magic Device bonus as high as you possibly can. It is the end-all be-all.
So long as some people are talking examples, I have one.
One of my favorite evil characters I've ever played was an Infernal Pact Warlock in 4E. His whole thing was that he was the scion of a noble family in a country whose entire noble class and royal family had made bargains with Hell. In exchange for bargaining with devils that their lives would be cut short and their souls claimed by Hell, they received enough magical power to turn their country into a paradise. The people of his country, even the commoners, enjoyed a higher standard of living than almost anywhere else in the setting, all at the cost of the lives and souls of whatever creatures the nobility cursed in order to extend their own lives (that was part of the bargain. Your devil caseworker can and will kill you the moment your time is up, but you can extend your time by laying curses on other creatures, which damns their souls to the Pit when they die).
This guy was arrogant, absolutely convinced of his own superiority and more than willing to give each and every one of his enemies to the devils, not just to keep himself alive, but also because he'd made a deal with his contracted devil to help her advance in the infernal hierarchy in exchange for even more power should she succeed (this was how I represented his Hellbringer Paragon Path and Prince of Hell Epic Destiny). He was also intensely loyal to his party members. As far as he was concerned, there was an "in" group and an "out" group. All of his horrible magical power was for the sake of supporting his friends and countrymen (which is to say, the "in" group), as well as for destroying anyone who got in their way (which is to say, the "out" group). When he served someone, he made them a king so long as their ambition was genuine. When he served alongside someone, he conspired to make their work effortless so long as their efforts were stout-hearted. When someone served him, be basked them in marvels and riches so long as their service was to his standards. He was leal servant, dark confidante and uncompromising-but-rewarding taskmaster.
Was he evil? Only if you consider making pacts with devils, sacrificing your enemies to those devils and supporting an empire that does the same on a mass scale evil. But just because you're an unstoppable force of evil on a quest to become a Lord of Hell and turn your imperial capital into paradise on Earth doesn't mean you have to be a jerk about it.
He was even a member of a mostly-good party. And why not? Good people on a journey tend to fight bad people, and bad people tend to not only have a lot of good stuff, but are also usually bound for Hell already, which just makes the whole process so much smoother. As far as he was concerned, if you're going to sacrifice people's souls to the Pit, you might as well do it to other bad people. The party's already murdering those bad people, and they're evil people so they're probably headed for Hell anyway, so does it really make any difference if it just happen to have this warlock's devil patron's name attached to it? The good people get to beat up the bad people and the scheming devil-worshiper who works with them gets what he wants, too. Everyone wins.
You can't call something "broken" for failing at something it wasn't trying to do in the first place.
Igor Horvat wrote:
It's a feature, not a bug. Lower level encounters should be trivial to higher level characters, and quickly so.
Igor Horvat wrote:
No and double no.
Signature Skills feel wonky to me, too. At the very least, I'd like to see every class get get to pick one skill from off-list to be a Signature Skill. The big breaking point for me there is rituals. As much as I love the idea that you don't have to be able to cast spells to use rituals, the way the Signature Skill lists work functionally locks Fighters, Barbarians and Rogues from ever using them.
You were lied to.
"Expected" is the operative word. Most adventure paths are also expected to have 5 PCs at 15 point-buy, but I've never done that before, either. A party that exceeds wealth by level is obviously going to be punching above their weight class, but so is a party whose ability score point-buy totals out to 55. And yet that's the array I give my players. Wealth by level, like the ability score generation rules, was always intended to be a loose measuring stick rather than a hard-and-fast rule.
This is an adaptation to defend against a particular problem behavior epidemic among GMs. What's point in investing time and effort into giving my character a family if their first actual appearance just has them be murdered for cheap drama? They never understand that it's not engaging or interesting. It's just disheartening. Like, why did I waste all that time in the first place? Sure, you can tell your GM that your character's family is off-limits, but how often does that work?
Now, a new version is coming out. To prevent combat abuses, lets have resonance on magic items so you can only use/have so many. Ok.. so no magic items just for fun? The magic cat who I can play with 3 times a day now costs a resonance point each time I play with it? My character has 50,000 gold pieces, and is homeless. My character has gems and jewelry, but no wife/husband/children to support. Look, I'm rich, but I have no parents to send money to so that they do not loose the farm because they had a bad year.
As a GM, I would probably rule that a magic item that does literally nothing wouldn't cost resonance. If you want a house, a family, then fine by me. If you want to invest in them, then good. You'll be rewarded commiserate to your investment, because that's how I like to do things.
There has never been, and likely will never be, a maximum cost of gear you can own. Maybe the culture of the boards is distorting your view of how people play, but the people on the internet generally want to discuss mechanics because mechanics are objective. They're an easy place to establish common ground between people who may otherwise have wildly different experiences. Personally, I always run well ahead of wealth-by-level, but a lot of that extra is in intangibles: property, convenience, clothes and art, expensive rare books and chess sets, houses and castles, things that are not easily liquidated, sometimes not easily transported, but exist to add richness to the world and help the party be of prominence. I can't speak to anyone else's GMing style, but I can't imagine it's all that uncommon to give PCs a little something extra once their level-appropriate adventuring needs have been taken care of. And crafting has never provided a livable wage in d20, because the game's money system wasn't built on the assumption that normal people use it. If it were, then some prices would be way higher than they are in PF, and some would be way lower. It was build with the idea that player characters, the kinds of people who go through magic swords, potions and spell scrolls like toothpicks, cheap beer and toilet paper, would be the people making use of it. I don't think it discourages roleplaying. It just leaves it up the party.
So, maybe this is just me, but the burden of the RP side of RPG has always been on the players, at least with respect to d20. The system has never done all that much to encourage it. Maybe it's done what it could to not get in the way (personally, I disagree with this. There's been some level of obstruction in nearly every edition I've had the chance to read), but almost all encouragement thereof has been at the level of the individual table, not at the level of the system.
Darigaaz the Igniter wrote:
Same, save for gods.
I don't even think Chaos necessarily has a problem imposing their will on people, because Chaos doesn't shy away from conflict. If you shove enough people with loud, passionate personalities into the same place, sooner or later someone will have a problem with someone else. Even fighting is, in a narrative sense, a conflict born of two groups of people trying to impose their will on each other. So what? It happens. Conflict, once resolved, brings about change, and change is part of Chaos's bag. Nobody's perfect, so everyone always has the potential to change for the better. So, a paragon of Chaotic Good wouldn't so much avoid conflicting with someone else's will or freedom (while asserting their own will and freedom, naturally) as they would try to turn as many conflicts as they could into engines of positive change.
So, with regard to how Chaotic Good interacts with societies and laws, I'd like to bring up something from Eberron: the nation of Breland and its Chaotic Good king, Boranel. King Boranel, believing in the people's right to independence and autonomy, gave the legislative duties to a democratically-elected parliament, who revised the Galifar Code of Justice and made it the nation's constitution, making Breland the continent of Khorvaire's first constitutional monarchy (of course, it wouldn't be a fantasy constitutional monarchy without a Lawful Evil Prime Minister). The Brelish seriously value their great political experiment, as it allows local laws to be voted upon by public assembly and anyone with enough support to be voted into parliament. They are a people who believe that no man is born superior to any other, than different is just different, and that anything can change. Your average Brelish is Chaotic Good, but they're accepting of most other creeds and attitudes, so long as those attitudes don't infringe upon the autonomy of others.
So, yeah. Chaotic Good can totally support nation-building and even laws, so long as those nations and laws foster the independence, free thought and autonomy of the people.
Outside of examples entirely specific to Golarion, there also isn't anything mechanical that contradicts it. It's certainly always been my interpretation that paladin codes are internally-enforced, and I've never encountered any resistance to the notion until extremely recently.
Discussion of clerics is kind of out of the wheelhouse, so I'm not going to touch that one.
Chaotic characters are not children. They understand the nature of personal responsibility. In fact, it's part of their thing. Owning yourself means owning your actions. If what you (a Chaotic character) does makes someone mad, it's their right to be mad at you. If it makes the police mad, then it's similarly their right to be mad at you. When people break laws, the consequence is that those people get arrested (so long as they're caught). Chaotic characters might not let rules and restrictions get in their way, but they understand that what they do has fallout, and some of that fallout might be related to rules and restrictions.
Different Chaotic characters interpret this differently. One Chaotic Good character might peacefully surrender to arrest in a Good-aligned society because they understand that it's just the consequence of breaking laws. Even if what you did was Good, it wasn't permitted. Getting busted is just the cost of doing business. Another might decide that if you manage to catch him, then getting thrown in the slammer is fair game. Until they catch you, you're a free man. But once they do catch you, then you have to accept the consequences of your actions. Another still might accept long-term cosmic-level consequences, but not short-term ones. Evade the cops, break out of prison and skip town. You'll get yours when the time comes and they balance the scales, but until then, nothing ties you down except your own sense of morality.
Bolding for emphasis by me.
The extent to which a given character prioritizes the ethical portion of their alignment with respect to the moral portion is entirely up to the player. But I want to focus on the portion I bolded there. As I've expressed previously, I don't see Chaotic as being all about personal freedom. I see them as being all about agency, self-ownership, self-determination. It's easy to conflate that with full-stop personal freedom, but like I said, Chaotic characters understand that actions have consequences. They're not children. They know that being without external control also means being without external protection, and they accept it and everything that comes with it. So, they instead have internal control. Their best qualities are theirs to express, however they see fit. So, to that end, a Chaotic character could certainly follow a code of behavior, but only because see the tenets of that code as part of who they are. They're never going to use that code as an excuse for doing or not doing something, because that isn't Chaotic. If they do something, and someone asks why, they'll say that it's because that's who they are. If they don't do something and someone asks why, they'll say it's because they wouldn't have been able to live with themselves if they did. The reason they'll live by their code and resist breaking it isn't because they need order and stability in their life. It's because they looked inside of themselves and realized the code was what was written in their heart, and breaking it would send them into an identity crisis of self-loathing and existential angst. Their oath is part of who they are. If they break their oath, when they betray themselves, their heart breaks too.
I'm going to paraphrase the only intelligent thing any Assassin's Creed game has ever said, from Revelations and with respect to the latter half of the code "Nothing is true. Everything is permitted." To say that "everything is permitted" means that we must be the shepherds of our own societies and fates, and accept whatever consequences come of our actions, be they glorious or tragic. We can't hold out our laws and orders and use them as excuses for action or inaction, because the choice or whether or not to act ultimately comes down to us. Chaos doesn't object to rules (at least, not inherently). They just don't see the value in using rules as an excuse or justification for anything, because people themselves are ultimately the arbiters of what they do. A law doesn't stop you from acting. You stop you from acting. A law doesn't compel you to act. You compel you to act. That is Chaos.
If a Chaotic character's god said "Thou shalt" and they wanted to do it anyway, then they'd still do it. If the god said "Thou shalt not" and they already weren't going to do it, they'd wonder why the god's wasting their breath. You see the paladin as "holy warrior devoted to a deity," and I think it's a shame that Paizo seems to see it that way as well, because I've never seen it that way. I've always seen paladins as oathsworn heroes empowered by their devotion to a cause bigger than themselves. They draw their power from a light within, a light that exists inside of every good heart (if only they knew it themselves), a cosmic force of good that is divine in equal measure to the gods, but is simultaneously part of them and separate from them. The light cannot abandon a paladin. When a paladin falls, it's the paladin losing sight of the light, and only atonement allows them the perspective to forgive themselves. I've never gotten any pushback for that interpretation before. It's always been a valid interpretation of the paladin. It's totally the paladin's design space. It's just that the design space has recently become artificially limited, and I don't think I stand alone in hoping that fake restriction gets removed.
You as well.
Conflict over depictions of a holy person has a particularly-fun solution: non-iconic art. A good number of religions around the world admonish depicting the gods in their art, believing that art is a kind of creation and that humans, incapable of making use of the power of creation, are stepping on the toes of the gods by depicting them in their art. Non-iconic art naturally cropped up as a way of representing the gods and their works through abstract representation in visual art and architecture. Islam in particular takes issue with artistic depictions of Allah, and some of the religious art in mosques is seriously kicking-rad. While I think any in-world religion that had a rule against depicting a particular holy person or persons would've already figured out non-iconic art, it would certainly be interesting for a group of PCs to bring about a renaissance of religious art.
I still feel like losing their powers for breaking their oath is appropriate. I realized earlier today that I really like the imagery of a self-sworn oath being something you make a part of yourself, and that you can't against with damaging your self-image to the point of existential crisis. It's like "You swore this oath because this is who you are. You said the words because the virtues they represented were written in your heart. When you betray yourself, when you break your oath, your heart breaks, too."
I can respect that. I think we arrive at different conclusions from the phrase "Respect legitimate authority." Respect, to me, does not imply obedience. You can respect someone and their position while disagreeing with them. You can even do it while disobeying them. After all, they have a hard job and it's made harder by disagreeable elements like Chaotic Good people going off and doing good without their authorization or approval. If that means the good king has to have you arrested, then that's fair (you know, so long as they can catch you). They probably had a good reason for telling you not to do whatever you did, and you probably jeopardized something or another by doing it anyway. A Chaotic Good person owns their actions, as well as the consequences of those actions. If the consequences of what they did is that they're considered an outlaw, then it's only fair.
It's possible I've also been too narrow in how I think of paladins. Personally, I don't see maintaining a standard of honor as being inherently Lawful, but I guess the decision of whether or not to lie, cheat, or steal (as a last resort to protect the innocent from the forces of tyranny) should be a personal one. I still think even a Chaotic Good paladin should get to choose whether or not they get the standard paladin code or the CG-specific one (what with agency being so important to Chaos), but if a variant code helps more people fully commit to their vision of their character, then I'm in support of it.
Personally, I see no reason a Chaotic Good paladin couldn't still follow the same code as the base paladin, save that any clause specifically referencing the term "Lawful Good" simply be changed to "Good." I've always felt that the code is sufficiently-broad that it could apply to all of the Goods. I suppose is if there were to be a code that exclusively applied to Chaotic Good, the latter of the proposed codes would be my preference, though I do think that seven clauses might be a bit too many.
No one said it was. Both Law and Chaos are equally capable of honor, dedication, honesty and following codes. They just follow codes for different reasons.
Jester David wrote:
Yes, because the oath is a solidification of part of who they are. In violating the oath, they've betrayed themselves.
Jester David wrote:
What would a CG paladin have to do to cease to become a paladin and be rejected by their god?
Betray their own heart (which, in this case, is the oath). Chances are, a Chaotic god would want their followers to follow their own conscience and never compromise what they saw as right. Never let anyone, not even your god, tell you what's right and what's wrong, because you already know it. If they stopped doing that, if they went against their own conscience of their own free will and said it was just because they were doing what someone else told them to do, then that would be enough to drive a Chaotic Good god to disgust.
Jester David wrote:
If CG paladins are given more leniency in actions than LG behaviour then it is mechanically advantageous to be a CG paladin as you don't have to walk the moral tightrope.
They wouldn't be given more leniency. Not everyone who follows the code sees it as a tightrope, not even Lawful Good people.
Jester David wrote:
He could swear an oath to never abandon his friends if they're in danger, obviously.
Jester David wrote:
Chaotic Good isn't selfish. Chaotic Good is just as devoted as the other Goods to bringing out the best in people. It just has different ideas about what "best" means. Chaotic Good prioritizes agency. It prioritizes self-ownership, being free from control, but unable to use external influences and complications as a shield and taking full ownership of one's self and one's actions. Chaotic Good believes that people are at their best when they don't betray themselves; when they're given the freedom to express who they are without having to worry about their best qualities being suborned by anyone or anything else. Chaotic Good would want to encourage other people to be free, to create a society where no one has to feel like they're not allowed to be who they are or try and become who they want to become.
Chaotic Good is just as likely to value causes larger than themselves as the other Goods. A Chaotic Good character dedicated to fighting evil would do so with all of their heart, because that's who they are. Fighting evil, protecting the innocent and safeguarding the world is the cause in their hearts. If they did anything else with their life, it would be not only a betrayal of who they are, but a rejection of their self-hood. If you're one of those people who thinks that the only acts of real altruism require not wanting to help people but feeling obligated to, then sure. I guess you can call that self-centered. But I think that most people would consider someone who sees helping people and stopping villains from doing bad things to be part of who they are to be a good person.
Chaotic Good would follow a god who they felt aligned with their own views and goals, if they followed one at all. They wouldn't take orders, because they wouldn't need to. They and their god care about the same stuff and want to do the same stuff. Orders are redundant. If their god communicated with them at all, it would probably just be a revelation to make information available. How their adherent goes about making use of that information is to their discretion. Any god that has a problem with one of their adherents following their own path of justice probably isn't very chaotic in the first place.
Jester David wrote:
I don't care. I'm the guy who wants paladins to be free from gods altogether.
Jester David wrote:
You're mis-characterizing Chaotic Good, so this line of questioning is invalid. They would swear the same oath that any other paladin would, but only because they really and truly believe in it at the core of who they are. Free from external influence, this is the kind of person they want to be. They won't let anyone else tell them how they should live or who they should be, but they will do everything in their power to live the kind of life that's most true to who they are and be the kind of person who's most true to who they want to be. The tenets of the oath are what they found when looked inside of their own heart. Breaking that oath means betraying themselves. When that oath breaks, so does their heart.
Reject My Paladin Compromise, and Then Talk About What Martial Characters Should Be Capable of Please
I'm afraid I'm going to have to disappoint you. Option 2 is just fine for me. I basically never play or run in Golarion and the only games where I've ever had to twist anyone's arm about running a Chaotic Good paladin were games I wasn't too thrilled about being in anyway.
Reject My Paladin Compromise, and Then Talk About What Martial Characters Should Be Capable of Please
I feel like, so long as we're talking supernatural powers, every martial character should eventually have the ability to use or manipulate something like qi to create supernatural effects, but monks should be able to do things beyond what the others can. A fighter or barbarian could strike a distant foe through the air or invoke their own inner fire to set their soul alight, and a rogue could steal something from across the room and put out an aura of "I'm not even here," but a monk who simultaneously embodies harmony with all things and the oneness of self should be like a qi wizard.
It's possible that this ability will just exist on its own, but I'd be interested in seeing the paladin have easier access to it, given that they're being tooled as the "durability" class: Mettle. I don't remember if the ability exists in PF1, but in 3.5 it was a feature that maybe four classes in the game got that was evasion but for fortitude and will saves and while wearing medium or heavier armor. I think the rationale behind why Mettle gave you that feature for two saves when Evasion was just one was that there were fewer things in the game that targeted fortitude and will than there were for reflex (at the very least, almost every trap was reflex-based).
No, my point is can a Chaotic character live by a Code of Conduct that in itself seems to be very Lawful. So however one answers that question tells me if they want a solely LG Paladin or an any alignment Paladin. But in a way I am relieved to see that you want something more than multi alignment Paladin. Each alignment class should be flavourful in its own way.
I say the answer is yes. A Chaotic character absolutely can abide by a Code of Conduct, even one as strict as the paladin's. I think that a Chaotic Good character who swore the oath would consider it a cause worthy of them. Yes, even the "Respect legitimate authority" part. You can respect someone's authority while still thinking they're wrong. You can respect them while telling them they're wrong. I even think you can respect them while breaking their laws (naturally, the cause would have to be really important), so long as you respect their right to enforce them and surrender peacefully once the deed's been done. (this doesn't reflect my thoughts on the Code of Conduct as it applies across the board. It's just the sort of thing I wouldn't rule provokes a fall as a GM) Others may disagree with me, but I also see paladins as paragons of moral courage, and moral courage means taking action for moral reasons in spite of possible consequences.
I don't think they'd swear an oath to a king or a god or anyone else, but they'd swear one to themselves. Chaos is about owning yourself, so betraying themselves by breaking their oath is something they'd never dream of doing. For the record, I support opening up the paladin, with all of its abilities and Code of Conduct, to any character of a Good alignment. I don't want multiple paladin variants for multiple alignments. One chassis applicable to any hero who swears the oath.
Whatever happens, I hope we keep a huge lists of minutiae. I have something of a soft spot for how crazy long the gear list was in PF1, especially by the time of Ultimate Equipment. It's another form of character expression. An adventurer having a stove can, a journal, a chess set and a shaving kit paints a completely different picture than the guy whose only significant non-adventuresome possessions are a religious text and a bottle of wine.
Nox Aeterna wrote:
Would they be? What if all of their formal magical knowledge came from studying at a wizard's college, from which they graduated (if only barely)? They cast arcane spells using their intelligence modifier, prepare them out of a spellbook and have to use material components barring taking the Eschew Materials feat. Would it still be a lie for them to claim to be a wizard? Because if that was my magus's background, he would definitely call himself a wizard.
Nox Aeterna wrote:
And if that's how you want to do things, then more power to you. But if I don't want to, I don't think the game shouldn't assume that I do. How you do things shouldn't have to conflict with how I do things.
Nox Aeterna wrote:
Would they still need to if their principle responsibility at their temple was clerical work? If their primary function in the temple of Razmir where they serve is to provide general support and assist in the ongoing functioning of the temple in an official capacity, then I think of them, in the most literal interpretation, as a cleric of Razmir.
Nox Aeterna wrote:
Hopefully classes will be even better defined now come PF2.
I hope for the opposite. Few things in a class-based game irritate me more than character classes being in-universe terminology. The only purpose it serves is to limit what concepts and character types are allowed to be expressed by which classes. Like, my favorite class is the magus, but not a single one of my magi has ever referred to themselves as a magus. They've been knights, swordsmen, spell-fencers, scholars, magicians and just wanderers, but never magi. I've never defined a single paladin as just being a paladin. Demon hunter? Sure. Crusader? Sometimes. Hero? Only on one occasion. As far as I'm concerned, the class name is for the players' convenience and nothing more.
Okay, here's where I can make my first clarification about my intent. I see this as a false dichotomy. The paladin isn't a divine champion for me, either. It also isn't a Round Table knight. But all of those are things the mechanics of the paladin can represent, even as they stand right now. The champion of the divine can differentiate themselves from the Round Table knight and the oathbound hero driven and empowered by a higher purpose even if they use the same base mechanics. It's the same for every class. The alchemist can be the mad shapechanging chemist, the terrifyingly-calm bomb-maker, the slave-driving reanimator or the focused scholar depending on how the player decides to build and play them. The barbarian can represent the hardy survivor from the wastes, the hot-blooded gladiator or even a werewolf. I think it's weird and kind of wrong to restrict the paladin to such a narrow band of what kind of character the class is allowed to represent.
In a four corners option, I sacrifice the 100% unique paladin. I'd be up for a subclass for each alignment, I just think that's a lot of work and space, and I kind of like the idea of paladins (or exemplars maybe?) being hard-line (two non-neutral aspects) for alignment.
I don't have anything to say here that I haven't said a dozen times already.
For the warpriest plus paladin prestige class option, I'm trading in a base class for a prestige class. That's a LOT to give up. But I also offered to let the paladin wait a book. That's also huge (not sure whether it gives up more or less than making the paladin a prestige class).
I'm also not in favor of making it a prestige class, even if it does remain locked to one alignment. It's a character type that should be playable from the world go. I hate having to houserule in something I want to play that I think really shouldn't be out of reach in the first place (especially given that it's much easier to houserule away extant options than to houserule in new ones) but if that's what I have to do to play the character I want to play from level 1, then I will never stop complaining about how absurd it is that it's my only option.
Because it really isn't much to ask.
And we go around in circles as I explain why that won't work for me.
Because, at least to me, those reasons don't make any sense. Near as I can tell, your objection is based on a singular vision of the kind of character the class represents. The thing is, fulfilling that vision doesn't become impossible by opening it up. You want an order of Round Table knights, all of whom are Lawful Good paladins? Fine, it's yours. No one wants to take them away from you. But please explain, clearly and in detail, how that is being damaged or restricted by other people being able to fulfill a different vision of the class, which is already fully supported by the rules save for a single point. How does it become impossible for you to play and run your paladins as Round Table knights if someone else is able to play and run them as the divine warriors, or if I'm able to play and run them as oathbound heroes? Because clearly there's something one of us isn't seeing.
So my urge is to simply not compromise. I have what I want in PF1, and I have what I want in the PF2 Playtest (sort of, I'd like to see other options tested). I don't like the balance of the other options in PF1 (Antipaladin, Gray Paladin, etc.), but that's not my problem to solve (because if everyone thought like I thought, there would be no need for those options). I want to compromise, because I want people to have fun options and enjoy the game and because I accept that not everyone feels the way I do, but with the way the conversation has been going, why should I?
Great. You have what you want. But we don't. And us getting what we want does not preclude you getting to have what you want, no matter how much you claim that to be the case. And until we do get what we want, this will never end.
Well, since said paladin is Chaotic, he doesn't give two hoots about any rule or oath and can simply ignore any point he believe to be interfering with his cause of a greater good. So we can skip bothering with the code altogether.
Chaotic Good cavaliers of the Order of the Sword disagree with you.
Of course corner cases are difficult. It wouldn't be called moral courage if the answer was easy.
It's not often I find myself on the same side of an argument as HWalsh, but... yes. A paladin would gamble on their divine backing, martial prowess and every iota of their ability to get the job done the hard way. Otherwise, why do they have that divine ability and martial prowess in the first place? I don't think a paladin would automatically be willing to make e sacrifice, and I don't think they should fall just for making a choice unless they think they should. It's not a sacrifice of personal honor or morality. It's a sacrifice of lives. Kill one to save a thousand sounds plenty reasonable on paper, but who's going to save that one while the paladin's busy saving the thousand? Who care's about a villain's ultimatum? Saving one person today means a thousand will die later? That's convenient. It means they have until later to save all those people. There is no big picture. There's only an artificial big picture created by a collage of smaller pictures. And every one of those smaller pictures that burns or fades or gets stolen diminishes the big picture. The only way to protect the big pictures is to keep all the smaller ones as intact as you can. You can't let evil get away today in order to do more good tomorrow because you can't promise that there'll even be a tomorrow. You've got to do today's good today and trust tomorrow's you to handle tomorrow's good.
Yes and absolutely. With the exception of having to be and stay Lawful Good, I have absolutely no qualms with any of the tenets of the Code of Conduct, especially now that the tenets are listed in order of importance. The other Goods can follow a Code of Conduct just as well as LG. When I say I want the paladin open, I mean with all the good and bad that comes with it.
I would also personally open a Paladin Confessional thread encouraging people to question if they should've fallen. Might as well consolidate all of the misdeed-confessing into one place.
In your case, it's that every argument you've made (really, that anyone makes) against opening up paladins even just to Any Good has been, to me, completely hollow. The argument has been, to my understanding, that they just can't handle the idea of the class having the ability to be played outside of a fairly narrow range. No one will ever be forced to play a non-LG paladin if they don't want to. No one will even necessarily be forced to play in the same party as a non-LG paladin if they don't want to. Hell, PFS could ban non-LG paladins and I doubt most of the people who want to open them up would even notice. You say that something's being taken away from you from opening up the paladin, but that something, the only conceivable thing that would go away, is exclusivity. You say that the playerbase is split evenly on the subject, but the boards probably represent a minuscule percentage of the playerbase. In my experience, people insufficiently-devoted to a tabletop RPG to post in its dedicated forums are also insufficiently-devoted to take personal offense to minor rules changes. I'm sorry, but that exclusivity isn't worth being defended. If the thought that someone on the other side of the country, hell, someone from the other side of the planet, plays this class outside of the unreasonably rigid way of which you approve somehow personally offends you, then I guess people houseruling away alignment restrictions makes your skin crawl, too. In which case, you're just going to have to deal with it because I'm not going to stop doing it until I don't have to anymore. You don't have to deal with them. You don't have to talk to them. You don't even have to look at them if even that's a bridge too far. But that something that is harmless to probably a majority of the playerbase because they either approve of it or just doesn't care is being denied to them because the last vestiges of resistance to it just can't handle it personally offends me, if only because of how staggeringly petty it is.
My problem is that the only argument against opening up paladins doesn't make any sense and any attempt to call that out is responded to with the rhetorical equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears and shouting until whoever disagrees with you gives up and goes away.
Also, tradition on its own isn't worth being protected. Times change, people change and traditions that don't prove valuable enough to stand the test of time are discarded and forgotten, the way they should be.
Same. Whether my paladin seeks the unity of all the good gods, is the champion of one of them or thinks that the cosmic principle of good is bigger and more worthy of veneration than all of them put together should be my call.
If anyone wants to see what non-lawful codes can look like, might I suggest reading some that are actually published by paizo? For example, see Shelyn's or Sarenrae's.
Or, hell, the edicts for the cavalier Orders, which aren't specific to any alignment (though obviously some are more of a challenge than others. An evil cavalier will find it difficult to maintain compliance with the Order of the Sword or Shield). Order of the Sword is only one whose Order abilities make reference to alignment, and even that is an alignment of your choosing.
I don't agree. It is totally within Chaotic Good's wheelhouse to want to bring out the best "you" that you can be. They just think that the best "you" that you can be is someone who wholly and fully takes ownership of themselves, without having to have their best qualities suborned by anyone or anything else. Restrictions and artificial choice limitations are what turn good people into bad people or force good people to do things they don't believe in. They'll give advice if asked, and guide people to discovering their own self-actualized sense of self-ownership if both parties are amenable to it, but that teaching isn't something to be forced onto people. If someone doesn't want to, if their best possible self happens to be someone who needs to be part of the system or even just someone a little less extreme than their philosophy of total and complete self-ownership, then that's fine. It's their choice. The important thing is that they know themselves well enough for that choice to be informed.
I keep hearing and answering this question. There are plenty of posts above.
I've looked through every post you've made in this thread. If you've given a clear and well-explained answer in there to the question "How does opening up the paladin to Neutral Good and Chaotic Good preclude the flavor of a Round Table-style knight?", I haven't seen it.
edit: needed to eliminate a typo
I'll be honest: if that's really where the line is, if that is genuinely the hill to die on, I can't see it as a position worth defending.
gustavo iglesias wrote:
Okay, but until I see any evidence to the contrary, I'm going to assume that druids still have divine magic and don't need to worship a god. Oracles still notably do not have to worship a god, but still use divine magic and divine abilities. As far as I'm concerned, that's reason enough for a paladin to not need to.