Paladin as King in Kingmaker?


Kingmaker


Without any spoilers, do people think that a Paladin could make a good king in the kingmaker series?

High Charisma?

Sigurd


Pretty much any character can work as the ruler in Kingmaker. The rules are generalized enough to support that (intentionally, I bet). Paladins will make good kings mechanically due to the high Charisma, but the moral code may cause issues. Really, really big issues.

Specifically, Paladins are prohibited from having cohorts or followers that are non-LG. That could be interpreted to mean a paladin king would only accept LG ministers, guards, etc etc for the kingdom. It could be interpreted other ways, too, of course, but it's definitely something to talk over with the GM first (or to consider on if you are the GM).


Sigurd wrote:

Without any spoilers, do people think that a Paladin could make a good king in the kingmaker series?

High Charisma?

Sigurd

My group is only one session in, but we're already thinking that the paladin in the group will be king. That may change, but he's the natural candidate thus far based on his backstory. The other characters are a low charisma ranger, a scheming wizard, and a cleric primarily interested in the opportunity to build monuments and fortifications. As such, the paladin is probably the most qualified and the most likely to receive support from the rest of the party.

Liberty's Edge

Zurai wrote:

Pretty much any character can work as the ruler in Kingmaker. The rules are generalized enough to support that (intentionally, I bet). Paladins will make good kings mechanically due to the high Charisma, but the moral code may cause issues. Really, really big issues.

Specifically, Paladins are prohibited from having cohorts or followers that are non-LG. That could be interpreted to mean a paladin king would only accept LG ministers, guards, etc etc for the kingdom. It could be interpreted other ways, too, of course, but it's definitely something to talk over with the GM first (or to consider on if you are the GM).

This is why I believe Cavaliers to be the logical choice, if present.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Not to mention a LG ruler tends to get strong support from a populace who know they have a good man as the ruler, not some Neutral bastard taking advantage of them or some Evil guy who'll leave them high and dry.

LG guys make great kings because people believe in them. I really don't see alignment being a problem. Indeed, it may be a great help.

==Aelryinth


Jeremiziah wrote:
This is why I believe Cavaliers to be the logical choice, if present.

Yep. We have a Cavalier of the Lion who's going to be the queen when we get to that part of the AP. Perfect choice.


Zurai wrote:

Pretty much any character can work as the ruler in Kingmaker. The rules are generalized enough to support that (intentionally, I bet). Paladins will make good kings mechanically due to the high Charisma, but the moral code may cause issues. Really, really big issues.

Specifically, Paladins are prohibited from having cohorts or followers that are non-LG. That could be interpreted to mean a paladin king would only accept LG ministers, guards, etc etc for the kingdom. It could be interpreted other ways, too, of course, but it's definitely something to talk over with the GM first (or to consider on if you are the GM).

That depends - a paladin can adventure with non-LG characters because they are not followers. As all the chief ministers in the government are likely PCs, the same rules will apply. If you are a head of state ruling with the aid of a parliament, then you won't have much choice about the members of the parliament.

Liberty's Edge

Paladins are just oppressors willing to administer the fascist laws of their god unto the innocent starving masses !

See my brochure ? It's written right here !

Off to the guillotine with them.

Join the People's council where we can decide how to kill them, and what to replace them to.

Vote is by unanimity - if you don't vote like us, we'll kill you. Slowly !


Dabbler wrote:
As all the chief ministers in the government are likely PCs

Not even close. There are 12 leadership positions, 10 of which give penalties if not filled (you don't get penalized for not having a co-ruler or royal assassin). The AP assumes a 4 person party. That means only 3 of the 9 ministers are going to be PCs; 1/3, in other words. Less than 1/3 if there's a royal assassin (although that seems unlike when you have a Paladin ruler).

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

But as was mentioned, just because the person is the ruler doesn't mean he necessarily have complete choice over who is running the other parts nor does that mean they are his followers or cohorts.


Which is why I said "could be interpreted". Also, I'd think a Paladin ruler would pretty much need to have some pretty hefty choice over who he delegates authority to. Maybe not to the degree of them needing to be LG, but he would definitely have to be much more sure of their motivations and actions than a non-Paladin ruler would need to. The actions of the underlings reflect on their superior, after all, and by accepting the stewardship of a nation, the Paladin makes himself responsible for all of the lives in that nation. Honestly, RP-wise, I don't think Paladins would make a good ruler at all. Being a good ruler requires flexibility, and that's not something Paladins are really permitted.


I just don't want to run into a situation all the time where strategically right decisions for the country are abhorrent to an LG alignment or that the rulers strong alignment is turned into a weapon against him\her somehow.
Some of the games I have seen (though not Paizo modules) are jaded and cynical - believing anything, is seen as a weakness.

I tend to agree that an LG alignment will inspire confidence in a population and I hope it might mean some ready allies as well. I don't want to be the only one on the block who actually opposes evil though.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I seem to recall that it was Constantine, though he was a Christian, who refused to be baptized because his job, as Roman Emperor, required him to sin. It's a very realist/real politik view of the world that a ruler may need to perform immoral acts to competently rule.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

cohort and follower is language specifically used only in the Leadership skill. There's no such express prohibition on paladins as far as governmental duties go.

He won't be able to appoint Evil people to work with, because he can't, and not even non-Evil Neutrals for such important positions he will have to associate with for long periods of time. BUT...a paladin can appoint Good people, not just LG people, to those positions, and there will be no difficulty with us.

Of course, he'll want LG people in those positions. If the 'people' are smart, they'll want them, too. Corruption in the bureaucracy is much less a problem with LG people. Fairness from rulers goes a long, long way. Nothing wrong with strict rulers...strict rulers who are blatantly unfair, that's LE and LN for you.

==Aelryinth


In the game I am running, the bard is the king as he has the highest charisma and he is the most "fluid" character as a CG character. He doesn't push others into any religions or ideologies and is pretty relaxed while still inspiring those around him to do good.


Aelryinth wrote:
cohort and follower is language specifically used only in the Leadership skill. There's no such express prohibition on paladins as far as governmental duties go.
Paladin code, page 64 Core Rulebook wrote:
Associates: While she may adventure with good or neutral allies, a paladin avoids working with evil characters or with anyone who consistently offends her moral code. Under exceptional circumstances, a paladin can ally with evil associates, but only to defeat what she believes to be a greater evil. A paladin should seek an atonement spell periodically during such an unusual alliance, and should end the alliance immediately should she feel it is doing more harm than good. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good.

"Henchmen" is not a defined game term like cohorts or followers, and makes it clear that Paladins are only supposed to delegate authority to LG individuals. The "anyone who consistently offends her moral code" clause also prevents Chaotic individuals from working with the Paladin ruler.

Dark Archive

Sigurd wrote:

I just don't want to run into a situation all the time where strategically right decisions for the country are abhorrent to an LG alignment or that the rulers strong alignment is turned into a weapon against him\her somehow.

Some of the games I have seen (though not Paizo modules) are jaded and cynical - believing anything, is seen as a weakness.

I tend to agree that an LG alignment will inspire confidence in a population and I hope it might mean some ready allies as well. I don't want to be the only one on the block who actually opposes evil though.

Sigurd, you're metagaming by asking this. Build your character first. >.<

{Yes, he is one of my players.}

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Zurai wrote:
Aelryinth wrote:
cohort and follower is language specifically used only in the Leadership skill. There's no such express prohibition on paladins as far as governmental duties go.
Paladin code, page 64 Core Rulebook wrote:
Associates: While she may adventure with good or neutral allies, a paladin avoids working with evil characters or with anyone who consistently offends her moral code. Under exceptional circumstances, a paladin can ally with evil associates, but only to defeat what she believes to be a greater evil. A paladin should seek an atonement spell periodically during such an unusual alliance, and should end the alliance immediately should she feel it is doing more harm than good. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good.
"Henchmen" is not a defined game term like cohorts or followers, and makes it clear that Paladins are only supposed to delegate authority to LG individuals. The "anyone who consistently offends her moral code" clause also prevents Chaotic individuals from working with the Paladin ruler.

Henchman is not defined as 'government officials.' Do try again. Henchmen are personal servants of the paladin for being a person, not members of the government. While there's nothing preventing him from appointing a henchman to Ambassador Plenipotentiary, there's nothing forcing him to, either. Good alignment is enough.

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:
Henchman is not defined as 'government officials.' Do try again. Henchmen are personal servants of the paladin for being a person, not members of the government.
Dictionary.com wrote:

hench·man

1.
A loyal and trusted follower or subordinate.

"A loyal and trusted subordinate"? Sounds like a member of the Paladin's government to me. Do try again.

Grand Lodge

Zurai wrote:
Aelryinth wrote:
Henchman is not defined as 'government officials.' Do try again. Henchmen are personal servants of the paladin for being a person, not members of the government.
Dictionary.com wrote:

hench·man

1.
A loyal and trusted follower or subordinate.
"A loyal and trusted subordinate"? Sounds like a member of the Paladin's government to me. Do try again.

As was stated earlier it really is up to the group on how they want to define this issue and especially the GM. Remember we make the rules - as long as its consistent and everyone knows them it should be cool.

PJ

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Speaking as a GM who had one of his two groups being led by a Paladin, I'll through out my insights as best I may, hopefully without giving too much away.

One of the PC groups "elected" the Party Paladin to be Ruler, and though the player/character wasn't comfortable with taking the post, he acceded to the groups wishes, and did his best for about a year. As a LG worshiper of Erastil (like the majority of the party), the party itself wasn't too problematic. There was one PC who was perpetually borderline neutral-chaotic with evil tendencies that he and the other players got a lot of milage out of role-playing struggling to redeem (as did the mis-aligned player/character in question), but given none of the PCs/NPCs in their court had a distinctively evil aura, all they had to go on was rp, so the acceptability issue never really came up.

What proved to be the deal breaker was when his leadership was called into question - up until then everyone was supportive of his reign.

This might arguably be a spoiler, but:
When, after several bad months, a stranger came into town and pointed out all the mistakes, the Paladin thought about it, and decided he agreed with the newcomer. Rather than ask for help or try to defend his position, he shocked us all by turning the crown over to the visitor, saying that if he could do better, he would not only give him the throne but do everything he could in his power to help him (such as keeping the Chaotic-neutral-and-occasionally-evil PC from taking him out on the spot for challenging his boss). The party was shocked. I was obviously surprised. But we ran with it.

I did decide, however, that the Paladin had broken faith with his god and his people (Erastil is particularly stodgy about that sort of thing, being the god of community), and had performed a chaotic act by doing it on the spur of the moment and not consulting his fellows. On top of that, he was an Oath-breaker (feudalism, which is basically the system behind how Brevoy's colonies have been established, is all about oaths), and handing the responsibility to the first critic to come along, especially one you know nothing about, is a serious breach. First Paladin I've had fall because of a serious chaotic (as opposed to evil) act.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
Zurai wrote:
"A loyal and trusted subordinate"? Sounds like a member of the Paladin's government to me. Do try again.

My question is, how do they know? Seriously, a Paladin can detect evil. How does he detect Lawful Good? Would you actually do this to your players:

Paladin: Oleg, you've assisted us in creating a kingdom. I'd like you to become our new Minister of Finance.
GM: Ha! You've nominated a Chaotic Good NPC for an adviser. This is a clear violation of your code of conduct as a Paladin. You have angered the gods and lose your Paladin's powers.
Paladin: WTF?

I mean, if you catch your advisers or council breaking the laws of your kingdom or torturing puppies and you don't fire them, that's one thing. Punishing them for trying to run a government when not all humans are easily identified by alignment. I also think it is a big stretch to call a government official a "henchman". Besides, what if your council is democratically elected by the people? Can a paladin reject a lawfully elected councilor even if he can't identify his alignment as a LG.

Sigurd: Can a paladin be king? Yes. Will it be challenging? Yes. Will it be a rewarding RP experience? Yes! Go for it and see what happens.


As a Paladin in a newer KM AP, I wonder about the same thing.
As a DM though for many, many years, I can't imagine that there are ANY LG countries that arn't run by many CG, N, NG, LN, LG officials. There just isn't enough LG people in my opinion to have every post filled. Most people are NG or N correct? The question is can these people implement the laws and wishes of a LG ruler? I would think so. I agree his direct followers would have to be, but government officials? Doubtful, in my opinion. Are most of a Paladins army going to be LG, again very doubtful. Are some of his key generals? Sure. Remember you can be 1 alignment shift away from your gods alignment and still follow that diety so that means he could have NG or LN clerics following his god in his clergy for example, I still think he would trust them and that they could represent his wishes.
Read page 168 of the core rulebook, it gives a good summary of what Alignment should be used for, a tool to guide, not as a handcuff to restrict.
Hopefully your GM will interpret it the same way.


To my mind, the Paladin's code of conduct requires some level of willfulness. The paladin has to know what he's doing. "Tricking" a paladin into a permanent loss of class abilities this way is impossible.

Now, once he's gotten to know his CG advisor very well and realizes "Hey, this guy's willing to bend things to get his way, even if that's generally good we can't have that" then there is the potential for a problem.

Silver Crusade

The ruler of Lastwall is Watcher-Lord Ulthun II. According to Cities of Golarion, he is a L6 paladin. Cities at p. 47. I'd suspect that the Queen Galfrey of Mendev is likely a paladin as well, though I haven't seen her statted out anywhere.

Of course, an individual DM can decide differently. But the existence of at least one paladin ruler in Golarion is pretty strong evidence that the paladins' code should be interpreted to allow paladins in positions of political authority (at least in LG-dominant nations).

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