Paladin Alignments - More than just LG?


Homebrew and House Rules

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RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Weirdo wrote:

And another opinion on the LG/CG deal:

From a CG perspective, LG is just authoritarian, but not outright evil. It's the truth, LG never stops to think about how their rules stifle individuality. They just follow their codes and assume that's what's right all the time. Makes for a self-righteous bent in their personality, and a lack of real compassion.

actually, LG does think about how the rules stifle individuality. What CG does not understand is that LG considers it worth the sacrifice to do that.

It seems self-righteous from CG's standpoint, but wise and prudent from LG's. It shows true compassion and understanding, while CG simply shows passion and emotion without comprehension of the underlying reasons...willfully!

:)

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:

Chaos is not just Creation, it is dissolution and lack of focus.

Law is not merely stagnation, it is advancement and progress.

Law is about restrictions, Chaos is about no restrictions.
While LG is not inherently more 'good' then CG, it is inherently more limited and restricted in what 'good' actions it can take.

Because of this, it is seen as a purer alignment. The entire suite of actions available to LG is available to NG and CG. The reverse simply is not true.

So your saying good should be restricted and that makes it better? I disagree. I don't think the goodest of good is restricted, and Lawful is conservative, they are in many ways not progress.

Silly Example:
"We have to save the world by stopping the evil factory!" "no can do citizen. He filled out all the proper paperwork and breaking and entering would be illegal. Also the king doesn't allow protesting or scathing letters!"

Aelryinth wrote:
And us diehard paladin lovers love the fact that the paladin comes with that LG restriction on it. We tend to think people who want paladins of any alignment are simply power-gamers who want to corrupt the legacy of what being a LG hero means. Paladins get their powers because they are LG, not because they follow this or that god.

Don't forget other peoples opinions. Just because you like the restriction doesn't mean it works. You strike at a villain that doesn't exist. Your paladin doesn't cease to exist without the restriction.

By saying the restriction has to exist and everyone else is defiling it by wanting elsewise. You completely destroy progress. Its coveting to place your needs over everyone elses. Its also just a pile of mechanics. You can make a paladin out of a fighter or cavalier if you want a LG hero right? I mean, if you can expect everyone else to deal with you saying that?

It only helps the game to give more options. It gives everyone a chance to be who they want to be and use the mechanics they want. Though moderation is nice, I believe saying paladins are special and reserved for special players, really goes a little too far.

Aelryinth wrote:
If you want to play a CG Big Damn Hero, play one. You can do it without playing a Paladin!

Or, I can play a CG paladin with a different code. The only lawful thing about the paladin is his code and his divine bond being able to gain the axiomatic property.


MrSin wrote:


It only helps the game to give more options. It gives everyone a chance to be who they want to be and use the mechanics they want. Though moderation is nice, I believe saying paladins are special and reserved for special players, really goes a little too far.

Wrong. Here's why: From the very beginning, Paladin was a class that you could only qualify for if you had high enough attributes and were LG, otherwise you were a plain Jane Fighter or maybe a Ranger.

A Paladin was a LOT more handy to have around than a Fighter, once upon a time, because they kicked more butt. Only problem was, they were LG, which meant that they didn't approve of being Chaotic, swiping things etc. They got LOTS of bennies simply because they were LG, and it made players wish they could run one.


Fluff does not balance mechanics.

Shadow Lodge

Piccolo wrote:

Wrong. Here's why: From the very beginning, Paladin was a class that you could only qualify for if you had high enough attributes and were LG, otherwise you were a plain Jane Fighter or maybe a Ranger.

A Paladin was a LOT more handy to have around than a Fighter, once upon a time, because they kicked more butt. Only problem was, they were LG, which meant that they didn't approve of being Chaotic, swiping things etc. They got LOTS of bennies simply because they were LG, and it made players wish they could run one.

And now they're not OP and attribute minimums don't exist period. So why is the alignment restriction still good for anything other than nostalgia? Do you see anyone arguing that because AD&D paladins were human-only, the class lost something when you could be an elven or dwarven or (gasp!) half-orc paladin?

Piccolo wrote:

there's a difference between self centered, and selfish.

self centered thinks about themselves primarily, but if they discover others are passionate about something, they take that into account when making their decisions. Thing is, that's not a habit.

Selfish doesn't give a rip about other's feelings, period.

Buy that definition, the neutral spread (LN, TN, CN) is self-centered. The good alignments are still all other-centered: the whole point of Good is to put others before yourself.

Piccolo wrote:
Mikaze, I really think you should take a look at Lawful alignments. By nature, they first look at how their actions will affect everyone else. That's not necessarily good or evil, because that can be taken many ways. It just means that their focus isn't on themselves at nearly all times, as it would be for Chaotics. It's on society as a whole, the big enchilada. "Yeah, I could break this law, but why is the law there? Oh, it's to prevent (blank), and I agree that makes sense. I shouldn't break this law."

No, that's a Neutral (L/C) type. The Lawful person reflexively obeys the law unless there's an obvious reason not to (eg the law says to kill all members of race X). It's not just a willingness to obey, remember, it's a compulsion to do so.

Piccolo wrote:
Meanwhile, a Chaotic type wouldn't even consider the law in the first place. They'd just think about what they figure is the right thing to do in their eyes, and do it.

But if they are CG "the right thing" is always what is best for the other individuals involved. Having a personal conscience is not the same thing as thinking of yourself first, it just means you're thinking with your moral apparatus rather than borrowing a pre-made moral system.

Aelryinth wrote:
Weirdo wrote:

And another opinion on the LG/CG deal:

From a CG perspective, LG is just authoritarian, but not outright evil. It's the truth, LG never stops to think about how their rules stifle individuality. They just follow their codes and assume that's what's right all the time. Makes for a self-righteous bent in their personality, and a lack of real compassion.

actually, LG does think about how the rules stifle individuality. What CG does not understand is that LG considers it worth the sacrifice to do that.

It seems self-righteous from CG's standpoint, but wise and prudent from LG's. It shows true compassion and understanding, while CG simply shows passion and emotion without comprehension of the underlying reasons...willfully!

And CG thinks that by forcing everyone to make that sacrifice rather than let everyone decide for themselves whether stability is worth individuality, LG is deluding itself into thinking it's compassionate, willfully ignoring what the people need while claiming to represent "the big picture" and "the greater good."

LG and CG do not agree on the best way to be good, and that is totally normal because they're on opposite ends of one of the two alignment spectra. But giving an argument for LG superiority from the POV of LG does not prove that LG is actually superior - I can just as easily condemn LG from the CG viewpoint.

And to go back to LG Paladins not always fitting in:

In the last 5 years I've played in 3 campaigns in which the premise was some variation on "you are fighting an evil government without the support of any lawful authority." These campaigns by nature require the PCs to conceal their activities. And they are not unheroic games - I don't think any of them featured any evil acts. But because we had to lie at least once every other session, and regularly oppose lawful authority, these campaigns would be very hostile to a RAW LG paladin. 3 campaigns in which the very premise, not the presence of antiheroic party members, makes a classic paladin difficult or impossible to play. No other core class has that problem. And if paladins were "any good" the class would be equally heroic, but would not have that problem.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Restrictions on play balance many mechanics.

Your CG paladin wanna-be can lie, cheat, forge papers, sleep around, break promises, rob from the rich and do all sorts of things a paladin simply cannot do.

So, yes, there is balance. You just can't enumerate them. That's one of the great things about the paladin.

And Mr. Sin, that was a hugely silly and untrue example. It was very Lawful Stupid. You're assuming the paladin can't use the law against someone abusing the law.

==Bob D.


Aelryinth wrote:

Restrictions on play balance many mechanics.

Your CG paladin wanna-be can lie, cheat, forge papers, sleep around, break promises, rob from the rich and do all sorts of things a paladin simply cannot do.

My CG Paladin is still a paladin. Not a wanna-be. Your trying to make it look like their total jerk bags. Taking the extremes. Not everyone wants to play CG as constantly going out of their way to break the law or be a jerk. That's chaotic stupid, and can easily fall into evil. Sometimes its the guy who does what's best for everyone and breaks a few laws in the process if he has to. Younger heroes are usually a good example of this.

LG paladins can sleep around. Its not against their code. They also can't debilitate foes with poison, lie to save lies, blahblahblah.

Aelryinth wrote:
So, yes, there is balance. You just can't enumerate them. That's one of the great things about the paladin.

Care to elaborate? What exactly are we enumerating?

Restrictions on play are awful if they never come up. Situational negatives are like situational bonuses, they just aren't that great. Many games I've played never have poison involved, many characters just won't lie, and many characters are naturally good. Should they get bonuses for this? How about if I only use slashing weapons?

Aelryinth wrote:
And Mr. Sin, that was a hugely silly and untrue example. It was very Lawful Stupid. You're assuming the paladin can't use the law against someone abusing the law.

I said it was silly in the title. It takes the extreme of what you just said about paladins. They have restrictions in place right? What exactly do you expect a hero to do in that situation, break the law?

Shadow Lodge

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Aelryinth wrote:
And Mr. Sin, that was a hugely silly and untrue example. It was very Lawful Stupid. You're assuming the paladin can't use the law against someone abusing the law.

And you're assuming there's a law they can use against the villain. There might not be - at least, not one that can be used in time to save the day. LE villains are very good at setting up layers of red tape for a LG hero to wade through, it's classier than trying to slow them down with disposable minions.

Aelryinth wrote:

Your CG paladin wanna-be can... sleep around...

MrSin wrote:
LG paladins can sleep around. Its not against their code.

Why is chastity so important for a paladin again?

Oh yeah, those Judeo-christian values being imported into a totally inappropriate context.

If you feel the CG paladin still needs some fluff restricitions, here is a list of choices:

  • Cannot assume titles of authority or use them in addressing others (ex: Your Highness, Your Honour)
  • Cannot participate in rituals of obedience (ex: bowing, doffing hats)
  • Cannot use or condone the use of magic interfering with free will, including Charm, Dominate, Suggestion, or Mark of Justice
  • Cannot keep a prisoner who prefers death to imprisonment
  • Cannot tolerate execution of persons for crimes that are not evil in nature (ex: adultery)
  • Cannot enter into or encourage others to enter into a binding contract (one that has penalties for breaking the contract beyond the loss of its benefits)
  • Cannot make promises, as this gives the impression of having entered into a verbal binding agreement. Instead of saying "I promise to save your brother" the CG paladin says "I intend to save your brother."

If you think being unable to forge documents is inconvenient for the LG paladin, wait until the CG paladin refuses to bow to the king. This is why the CG paladin is "hard mode" in my next campaign.

"But Weirdo, Chaotic people can do all those things!" Yes, and LG people can lie, cheat, steal, forge documents, etc. They generally don't like to (just like a chaotic doesn't generally like bowing to the king) but most will if the alternatives are worse. LG paladins have extra requirements characteristic of but beyond their alignment - so would the CG variety.


I actually highly disagree with some of those examples of choices. I suppose if its a choice about what you follow it helps, that is what I what I house rule. You get some interesting things. I love it when kids do it, you get either really silly or something super interesting to work with.

Shadow Lodge

Which ones do you have a problem with and why? I wouldn't throw all those on the same CG paladin at once - for starters, it really is hard mode compared to the standard LG. But to address the argument that CG paladins are a powergaming attempt to get paladin powers without restrictions, CG-aligned restrictions are needed to replace the lawful items "respect legitimate authority, don't cheat, lie, or use poison" in the LG code. I think most of those are decent options - "give them liberty or death" and "no promises" are a little extreme but well within the grounds of what I can see a CG paladin taking on.

Ideally the "any Good" paladin would have a core code including protect the innocent, punish evil, no evil actions and then would be instructed to pick 1-3 additional codes, some lawful (respect authority) or chaotic (no compulsions or binding contracts) or neutral (stuff like poverty, chastity, or peace). The "philosophies" in Champions of Purity are a good starting point since they offer several viewpoints typical of each good alignment with behavior typical of that viewpoint.

And for a good fictional example of a CG paladin, try Shuna from Elfquest. She disobeys her father (an agent of the law) to free an innocent prisoner, starts a revolution against the tyrant, and instinctively puts herself in danger to save an ally. She's a classic CG freedom fighter and also clearly not a fighter or cavalier since she has no martial training - instead she runs off of faith and courage and acts as an inspiration to the people providing them with the will to change their circumstances.


Mostly I have issues with the "Not using titles" and "Refuse to do rituals". "They call me sir... DOH!". I would much rather have "pick your own conduct" as a thing.

Pick your own conduct can be a lot of things. It could give lenience and allow people to control what they really want to deal with. It would make being a paladin for fun I think. You could get "I will protect the name and individuals of the Church of Saranrae" or you could get "I refuse to bow before any man. We are all equal". You also won't get "I won't use poison. Even though I'm a vishkanya and my people only use poison, and we use sleep poison which is the least lethal thing in the world." Mind you it supports individualism, but as this is a game that's likely a good thing. You can still choose to support only outside structures, the law and authority. You can also choose to use the old code, or even make it more strict if you wanted. You could add the virtues, diligence, charity, and such to it if you wished and that fit what your ideal of being good and honest is. You could even add sobriety if that's big for you.

Like I said, you get all sorts of things. I remember as a kid one of the first games I played in, a guy wanted to play a kensai. They had to make their own code. So he decided to protect the ale. That was his oath as a dwarven monk.

The big thing I have against the code as it stands, is mostly that its rigid and doesn't always fit. A code used by a man out to do good shouldn't be about bowing to authority, or performing a particular cultures idea of "good". It should be about justice, and doing the right thing. This should be vague. It shouldn't be restrictive, it should be open and be about actively pursuing good, and being a hero. LG isn't the best good or the only good. Its not the purest form. Not lying doesn't mean always good. Poisons aren't always evil. Sleeping around is... oddly not on the list. Fighting for justice, protecting innocents, and undoing wrongs however are always good, right? They're also very open, and you can go about them in many ways.

Silver Crusade

This is something they ought to make some Paladin class Archetypes for. There's even precedent for it; look at the various Genie/Djinni variant Sorcerer Bloodlines out there. They have one for pretty much every version of the species, and they're mostly minor tweaks of one another; one core, with different nouns and adjectives plugged in to fit the desired flavor.

I would be thrilled to see a similar setup for the Paladin. Give us a NG archetype, a CG one... hell, toss in LE, NE, and CE if you want (though the Anti-Paladin may already cover that to some extent).

Also, to those who have commented they have trouble seeing 'CG White Knights'... I find this absurd. Chaotic Good is not solely limited to wandering drunken pickpocket pirates who get into bar brawls before going off to do something benevolent (Edit: Exaggeration mine. I don't think any of you have directly said anything like that, though I am making a note of it because it's a very common trend in Paizo's art to primarily depict CG in this way). It's entirely possible for a creature to arrive at a CG philosophy through an intelligent, articulate thought process. They may actively reject the notion that a society 'supposedly needs' order if it wishes to remain peaceful and prosperous, but some of them are are people who can make eloquent and sensible arguments to back it up.

The lesser deity Milani is an example of this; her dogma focuses primarily on uprisings (an extremely Chaotic thing) aimed at clearing the way for that society to return to a more benevolent (or at least less oppressive) way of operating... this could even wind up being a LG society once they're done (one can infer they'd prefer NG or CG results instead, but are willing to accept LG), and they're mostly okay with that. What little info we have on her suggests she counts Iomedae, the patron of 'white knights', as a philosophical ally and the feeling is mutual; apparently they're both okay with civility, large cities, intelligent study of topics, and so on when used to accomplish Good things. CG can definitely be a multi-faceted philosophy.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

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I'm not concerned about specific examples on CG...I'm focused on the overall breadth.

And the breadth of CG says that their flexibility of actions far, far eclipses that of what LG can do. Chaos simply has more choices, in both the short and long term. Examples of tightly wound CG people adhering to a code are disengenuous. The possibilities of actions open to CG is simply wider then that allowed to LG, especially a strict LG like a paladin. And that means a CG paladin is simply more powerful then an LG one if they have the same abilities, because he can resort to tactics and methods the LG cannot.

And that's why we don't like 'paladins' of other alignments. If you want to downgrade the stuff a CG guy gets to pay for his flexibility and looser moral code, that's fine...but don't call him a paladin or make him the twin, but better.

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:

I'm not concerned about specific examples on CG...I'm focused on the overall breadth.

And the breadth of CG says that their flexibility of actions far, far eclipses that of what LG can do. Chaos simply has more choices, in both the short and long term. Examples of tightly wound CG people adhering to a code are disengenuous. The possibilities of actions open to CG is simply wider then that allowed to LG, especially a strict LG like a paladin. And that means a CG paladin is simply more powerful then an LG one if they have the same abilities, because he can resort to tactics and methods the LG cannot.

And that's why we don't like 'paladins' of other alignments. If you want to downgrade the stuff a CG guy gets to pay for his flexibility and looser moral code, that's fine...but don't call him a paladin or make him the twin, but better.

==Aelryinth

Alright, so why doesn't this logic fall into every other lawful character ever? Should Lawful Clerics get more than chaotic? How about Lawful Druids? How about Lawful Fighters?

Its not true that they are given extra options for being chaotic. Only the paladin class has an absolute mandate that they can't do something or they lose all their class features. Though Druids have something similar, not nearly as bad and unlikely to matter. It does affect who you are, but people don't just live in a box of "I can only do this because I'm Lawful." and "I can't listen to laws because I'm chaotic."

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

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I'm not sure why you are making the argument.

It is the restriction to LG that makes the paladin what he is...a heroic defender of the highest ideals, and given extra abilities to compensate for the restrictions he operates under.

All clerics are servants to the gods, and are equal beneath them...to an extant. There are lots of people who will tell you the alignments and the domains are not created equal, and that good clerics do indeed operate under a handicap vs their evil counterparts. All things being equal, two clerics with identical domains, one good, one evil, the evil one has the advantage because he has no moral limits on what he is capable of.

So the classes are NOT inherently equal in game play, and that's what makes them heroes...good defying evil, even at a disadvantage.

The instant you make paladins of all alignments, the LG paladin is the weak cousin. The CG paladin is MUCH more playable and can be interpreted so much more freely. Switch Lawful stuff to Chaos, and you're done! What could be better? Now I can do all the edgy stuff that some strait-laced LG paladin can't do, and get all his benefits.

Uh-uh.

==Aelryinth


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You just said that LG gives you special rights, and now your saying its only for paladin because their special, because not all classes are created equal, while argueing that the restrictions are what balance them... That's how I read it anyway.

The fluff is that they embody an ideal of good. NG can do that too, as can CG. Its also fluff, which is very mutable, and its values don't really change if all of the sudden there are CG Templars running around. Your paladin is still a paladin. He may be better respected because he's so straight laced, he may be looked down upon because he's got a stick up his butt by others. If I gave any other class restrictions like the paladin, should they get super powers for it? That was my point earlier.

The moment you make paladins of all alignment it does not make the LG a weak cousin. Chances are you'll end up making a new code for the others, and giving lenience to the code that already exist. The current code is broken. Vishkanya lose their main racial feature to it as written. You can't lie to save peoples lives as written. Doing completely ordinary things can make you fall. There are Fall-Fall situations. Its highly subjective, and played strictly its a game of watching out for landmines and inviting cruel GMs to make you fall for entertainment, drama, and to make things "interesting". Of course if you ignore the code entirely in this argument, then remember they are only as strict as everyone else who is lawful compared to chaos. Why play lawful as any other class?

Why is playable used in a negative sense? Shouldn't all classes really be playable in a game? Why does a CG character have to be edgy? Do you think he's some drunken maniac out killing people in the night or something? He might be a big hero who's modest and fights for what's right without care for tradition or rules.

Really though, the idea that alignment restricts you is sort of crazy. Its not supposed to be a straight jacket. Alignment is not a straightjacket. You shouldn't be arguing that it is, or should be. Straightjackets are a bad thing to be in.

Silver Crusade

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I'll admit part of why I'd like to see these variants exist is to take a direct swipe at the often implied notion that LG is the 'superior' form of Good. One sees it in a lot of material, especially older/non-PF material.

Let's rework the Paladin's code to not cause a million "should this Paladin fall?" threads. Let's give the other alignments some exemplars equal in standing to them. These are things I'd like to see. I actually wish they'd reverse the alignment noun order to do Moral ethos first, THEN Social. Good Chaotic. Good Neutral. Good Lawful. Emphasizing Good over a social ethos. It's relatively minor semantics, but I'd still like to have that happen.


Aelryinth wrote:


If you want to play a CG Big Damn Hero, play one. You can do it without playing a Paladin!

==Aelryinth

There's no reason we shouldn't be able to if we want to, though. Again, this is a decision to be made at the player/table level, not at the system level.

People say 'LG is what makes a paladin a paladin'. That's YOUR definition of paladin, which is no more or less valid than mine or anybody else's. So, if it's your character, you only play LG. If you're DMing, then ban non-LG paladins. Other people should certainly be allowed, by the rules, to play their paladins the way they want, because that means everybody is happy. Those who want restricted paladins have them, and those who don't, don't.

Other people gain things, but the 'traditional' crowd loses nothing. Best of both worlds.

Silver Crusade

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Piccolo wrote:

Mikaze, I really think you should take a look at Lawful alignments. By nature, they first look at how their actions will affect everyone else. That's not necessarily good or evil, because that can be taken many ways. It just means that their focus isn't on themselves at nearly all times, as it would be for Chaotics. It's on society as a whole, the big enchilada. "Yeah, I could break this law, but why is the law there? Oh, it's to prevent (blank), and I agree that makes sense. I shouldn't break this law."

I...have. I've been familiar with the game for quite some time, and Planescape is one of my all-time favorite settings. Exploration of alignment and what they actually mean isn't really new to me.

The problem here is that this is still a selective comparison. The worst elements of CG are being compared to the best elements of LG, rather than taking the entire package into account for both.

Aelryinth wrote:
looser moral code

This is where some of the resentment from the CG and NG crowd is coming from. CG and NG don't have looser moral codes than LG. They have looser ethical codes. Again, CG and NG aren't less good than LG.

Regarding LG as a more "pure" alignment, if I had to pick one of the goods to represent "pure", it would be NG when it is played as elevating the concerns of good over the hindrances of both chaos and law. And even then I wouldn't say NG is more good than CG or LG by default, as that alignment still covers a wide range of characters who might tend towards neutrality on the moral axis. But when it comes to applying alignments to "Ultimate Good"-type figures, NG is my usual go-to. After all, vanilla angels are NG rather than LG.

I have to admit, the argument that LG is Ultimate Good has irked me for a long time. Particularly now when my CG barbarian, who has been played as Good as any paladin, is possibly going to have to sacrifice himself because some ostensibly good beings won't(or can't because of their hardwired nature) do the right thing because of their lawfulness.

Silver Crusade

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Celestial Pegasus wrote:
I'll admit part of why I'd like to see these variants exist is to take a direct swipe at the often implied notion that LG is the 'superior' form of Good. One sees it in a lot of material, especially older/non-PF material.

Heck, that sort of thing was one of the early warning signs that the new Dungeon Crawl Classics system was almost the antithesis of the game I want to play.


Mikaze wrote:
when it comes to applying alignments to "Ultimate Good"-type figures, NG is my usual go-to. After all, vanilla angels are NG rather than LG.

I once tried playing an absurdly and selfless good character I could and he turned into a NG druid. Unhindered by law/chaos, cared about nature, didn't really get into the whole society thing, but spent his whole first gaming session giving charity to a town and fellow players. The result was... Being told I wasn't being good enough, because I was willing to kill an evil creature, and therefore I was Pure Neutral, or worse chaotic Neutral. Sometimes you just can't be good enough. Meanwhile, the LG paladin who refused to kill anyone ever got a lot of love... Alignment arguments can really end up weird. They can be subjective, and you aren't always with like minded individuals on the subject.

The point is, that sometimes some lenience helps the world run. Especially with subjective subjects you can get into arguments easily over. "What is good and evil?" "What is Chaos?" "What is following the law" "Is it the means, the thoughts, or the ends?" are easily philosophical questions. Sometimes people tend to disagree.

Silver Crusade

That's screwed up, MrSin. Not what you were doing; how it was evaluated from an Alignment perspective. All three brands of Good have numerous adherents that are willing to kill. Some of them, especially within Pathfinder, follow Good-aligned Deities who have gone out of their way to kill mortals to prove a point.

For example, Sarenrae got tired of a city that was openly allowing priests of Rovagug to preach in the streets. After numerous efforts by her faithful to convince the town to abandon some of the more blatant displays of evil, she... just cut a hole in the ground and let the city fall in. That's pretty extreme. She's still upheld as a paragon of Good in the setting.

Sometimes Evil has to be put down. Sometimes it's not possible or practical to stop said Evil in a 'soft arts' style where it doesn't die. Anyone who wants to hand out alignment shifts to Neutral for the mere act of (I'm presuming here) justified violence is being absurd.

Mikaze: Shows what I've been paying attention to lately. My response is "what 'Dungeon Crawl Classics'?" If by 'classics' they mean 'bringing along decades-old tripe that should have died with its era', I suspect my reaction may be the same as yours.


Celestial Pegasus wrote:
That's screwed up, MrSin. Not what you were doing; how it was evaluated from an Alignment perspective. All three brands of Good have numerous adherents that are willing to kill. Some of them, especially within Pathfinder, follow Good-aligned Deities who have gone out of their way to kill mortals to prove a point.

Well, the evil going on was that people were being stabbed or robbed, but my first reaction to things was supposed to be "talk them down" or "let them go". The DM was big on this I guess. I left the day after we were supposed to somehow figure out how to talk with Dark Folk who were robbing the city... but who had poisoned blades pulled on us, and didn't speak common. I mean, it really would have made sense, if he hadn't presented it in such a ridiculous manner. What else do you expect people to do, politely ask them to stab stabbing in a language they don't speak? That game was a particular extreme however. I couldn't run a good or lawful character, much less a paladin under the expectations presented.

Not everyone likes gray morality, or 2 dimensional characters. Sometimes they like black and white, and sometimes its fine to keep alignments simple. That was a not a game where "evil has to be put down" was ever supposed to be an option, nor one where gray morality nor being chaotic was socially accepted by the group.

Silver Crusade

Celestial Pegasus wrote:
Mikaze: Shows what I've been paying attention to lately. My response is "what 'Dungeon Crawl Classics'?" If by 'classics' they mean 'bringing along decades-old tripe that should have died with its era', I suspect my reaction may be the same as yours.

It's a retro-style game made by the folks that made the DCC line of adventure modules first for 3.x and then 4E. It's a style of game that has its fans, and I don't begrudge them their fun, but man it is not for me.

The tagline for the module line:

Quote:
"Remember the good old days, when adventures were underground, NPCs were there to be killed, and the finale of every dungeon was the dragon on the 20th level? Those days are back. Dungeon Crawl Classics don't waste your time with long-winded speeches, weird campaign settings, or NPCs who aren't meant to be killed. Each adventure is 100% good, solid dungeon crawl, with the monsters you know, the traps you fear, and the secret doors you know are there somewhere."

Which is helpful in that it offers warning signs for those who are really not going to enjoy that style of game as well as selling it to the folks that are looking for that sort of thing.

The DCC rules themselves also went even further back. They removed gnomes and half-orcs and turned halflings, dwarves, and elves into classes. And alignment was shaved down to Lawful, Neutral, and Chaotic. And yeah, it sells the idea of Lawful=good/Chaos=evil pretty hard.

It just wasn't what I look for in my fantasy gaming.

Silver Crusade

Mikaze: Up to a point I could actually be cool with that. That sounds like low-thought/high-action tabletop play. That's not a bad thing, as you say. A lot of the other baggage brought up that description just makes me go "Naaaaah" and look elsewhere though.


Weirdo wrote:


Piccolo wrote:

there's a difference between self centered, and selfish.

self centered thinks about themselves primarily, but if they discover others are passionate about something, they take that into account when making their decisions. Thing is, that's not a habit.

Selfish doesn't give a rip about other's feelings, period.

Buy that definition, the neutral spread (LN, TN, CN) is self-centered. The good alignments are still all other-centered: the whole point of Good is to put others before yourself.

The thing about Lawful vs Chaotic is Lawful takes the ethical bits out of Good and codifies them, then adheres.

Or to put it another way, the 3 Neutral alignments won't go out of their way to help OR harm someone they don't know personally. The thing about Good is that they go to lengths to help others that they have no reason to help other than altruism. Evil is the polar opposite in that it goes to great lengths to satisfy their own urges and don't care if they hurt others in the doing. Meanwhile, Neutral isn't going to go for extremes either way, just helping when its convenient unless they know and care for the recipient in which case they will go to more intense examples of weal or woe.


The alignment system is one of the most misinterpreted concepts ever thought up in the long history of this hobby, and it will probably never be fixed or properly understood, so I say go ahead and make paladins of any alignment you need in order to feel right about your characters.

That said, I really think that if you *need* to make a paladin that can't be LG without being a moron or a complete ass, then you probably don't understand the alignment.

These guys are all about charisma and doing the right thing. Any "rule" that somehow encourages you to do the wrong thing is an incorrect rule, probably written by a guy who didn't understand alignment or paladins.

Once upon a time, there was this woman I had the hots for, but I found out that she was dating this guy that I knew (I really am going somewhere with this). I'd known this man for years, and jealousy got the better of me and I really wanted to dislike him or say something terrible about him... and I couldn't. At least, I couldn't if I were being honest. He was just that kind of guy - dealt fairly with people, had strong convictions but didn't force them down your throat, didn't judge, but also avoided spending time with people of questionable morals. Truthfully, he was exactly the kind of guy you'd want your daughter to date.

THAT is what a paladin is like. He may be a determined, crusading warrior against evil, but he's also the one that's so steadfast in his conviction that *simply having him nearby gives you courage*.

He may not approve of your intention to pickpocket every poor commoner in the local tavern. He'll forcibly object if you suggest gang-raping the farmer's daughter, but if you've proven yourself, you'll never have somebody more reliable or more formidable than him watching your back.

At the end of the day, if his high charisma score and willingness to put his money where his mouth is hasn't at least won over some grudging respect from you - if indeed you don't find yourself wishing that you could be a *little* more like him, then somebody is playing the paladin wrong.

Just sayin'.


Okay, a bit of a long post here so I apologize to those who hate reading long posts.

Gotta love how I start the thread asking about how or if allowing different alignments of paladins in a home-brew game would cause an unbalance or break the game in any way. Most, if not all, of the posters have agreed that it wouldn't, but that didn't stop the thread from going full-blown paladin alignment debating. Makes me laugh.

I've read almost all of the posts so far and there are good arguments on both sides on whether a paladin should even be called a paladin if he's anything other than LG. To me, as I've explained, they are holy warriors and a holy warrior of any god could be a paladin as long as they strictly adhere to that god's tenets/codes/dogma. I really don't think it would be hard to play with, play as, or run a game for any other kind of paladin as long as they followed those.

Sure Cayden Cailean could have a LG paladin, but to me that kind of paladin wouldn't be the essence of who the god is and what his true teachings and beliefs are. This is a god of freedom, travel, and drink. Most people play their paladins as pretty stuffy guys who wouldn't touch a drink and would walk into Cheliax keeping their mouths shut because they are following the laws of the land.

The CG paladin would be actively trying to incite a rebellion by any means necessary to overthrow this evil government and free the poor slaves. He'd know he couldn't enter the city and keep his mouth shut and would probably end up getting killed so he'd probably use agents, spies, and other means which would go with the "greater good" philosophy that the LG counterpart wouldn't because it would be "against the law."

So basically, the reason I ask is that I think that the alignment restriction doesn't necessarily restrict the PC, but rather the players and their views of how to play a paladin. People get all caught up in the lawful part of what a paladin is and sometimes forget that they are the epitome of good as well. Some can play the LG paladin as walking on the edge of that lawful part and keep to the good part really well, but then get called out by other people on forums and in their groups for "not playing their alignment as it should be played."

TL;DR: Removing the restriction would open it up for people to play some absolutely awesome characters who are a bit different than your run of the mill paladin, I could see so many possibilities for story hooks, plots, and role-playing opportunities that it's just plain ridiculous.


I forgot to mention this, but in for a penny, in for a pound...

Though the setting is far from the "Knights in shining armor" stereotype that people think of when they imagine paladins, I think that Kevin Sorbo's character from Hercules: The Legendary Journeys would actually be a pretty good example of a paladin with some daddy issues.

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I'd probably make him a NG barbarian or LG fighter, he just doesn't have that sense of greater purpose that paladins keep about them.

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:
I'd probably make him a NG barbarian or LG fighter, he just doesn't have that sense of greater purpose that paladins keep about them.

Barbarians and fighters can't be religious or have a sense of purpose? ouch.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

No, Kevin Sorbo doesn't. :) I'd say a paladin requires that sense...that doesn't mean other classes can't have it.

Since he doesn't have it, not a paladin! ;)

=+Aelryinth


Oh? Kevin Sorbo? I... Don't know who that is. Thought you were talking about any fighter or barbarian.


Sorry for keep pushing this more off-topic, but, I really want to ask Aelryinth, Piccolo and other "Paladin only LG" people.
What do you think off the alignment restrictions that are there? I would really like more Paladin alignments, but I understand the issues many people have with it. But the other alignment restrictions? It REALLY bugs me that, RAW, there can not be True Neutral monks or Chaotic Good druids. And the old alignment restrictions, like only neutral bards?

And back on topic, for my personal setting, based on Persia/Greece but with standard technology, we have the "four extreme paladins" and cause not trouble at all. But of course, is not the same for house setting that for official ones.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Alignment restrictions are flavor, fluff, and playstyle mandates.

Why is the paladin LG? Because it's the attempt to force a player to play a truly classic heroic mold character, complete with all the do's and don'ts that come with it. To compensate for the fact, you're given special powers so you're really good at your job, and someone without the same restrictions doesn't walk all over you.

Why is the ranger good? Because rangers are definitely and completely based on the Aragorn of legend. 'ranger' means 'militaristic woodsman patrolling the frontier to defend against incursions of evil creatures' to people like us.

It does not mean 'hunter good at killing favored enemies.' A 'ranger' is a heroic word to us grognards. You want a hunter...a hunter can be of any alignment.

Druids being neutral is because druids are tied to nature. Nature was never defined with extremes. They, like bards (bards are descendents of the druidic traditions) were always people in between, aloof from the extremes of civilized behavior, go betweens and mediators, travellers and loremasters. When you're tied to all the elements, extremism is to be avoided. Druids, like animals, tended to be neutral...they were the clerics of the natural world.

heck, until 2E, there were no neutral nature-priests...all such were druids. You could get Neutral clerics of smithing, trade, merchants and the like, but nature-priests were druids, and their turf wasn't impinged by clerics.

Eberron blasted this wide open by making druids servants of the land, and clerics servants of gods, so it introduced conflict between them. Previously, druids were most defined by FR, where gods granted their powrs, and the gods could have both druids and clerics as servants.

As for paladins of extreme alignments...'paladin' has a core meaning enshrined in the heart of grognards. If you want holy warriors of other alignments, just don't call them paladins, and don't make them paladin clones.

A CG holy warrior should NOT get all the goodies an LG paladin does. he doesn't operate under anywhere near the restrictions an LG paladin does. He'll make up for his lesser powers with fewer constraints on his activities...he can beat the LG paladin by not playing the same game.

That's REALLY hard to mechanically define, and its why so many people hate it. Having to make role playing choices to play this awesome class, when I want to have my cake and eat it too? We tend to lump it in with people creating their own custom PrC because they didn't get what they wanted out of this one or that one.

I would also like to point out that one of the things that the originial Paladin labored under was his tithing and wealth restrictions. To wit, he had to give away 10% of all his earnings to charity (usually his church), could not have more wealth then he could carry, and was limited to ten permanent magic items!

yes, you were required to reflect your humility and modesty in your lack of copious gear! heh.

==Aelryinth

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As for monks, the whole idea with monks is that they are incredibly disciplined. They are not animalistic, nor are they free spirits. They acheived what they did by incredible pursuit of self-perfection.

Neither neutrality unwilling to go to extremes or chaos' inability to temper their own emotions goes will with that image. Monks are Lawful, disciplined extremists, so totally devoted to their own path that they refute civilization...and yet, no uncivilized society can truly evolve something with such a sophisticated philosophy.

Us grognards equate Law with discipline. Simply pursuing the path the monk does requires such discipline they will be lawful.

If you want something that can fight unarmed effectively, don't call them a monk and don't make them a monk clone. Unarmed fighters of different sorts do exist, but 'monk' has a very specific context to us.

===Aelryinth


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Aelryinth wrote:
Alignment restrictions are flavor, fluff, and playstyle mandates.

Fluff and flavor changes between games. They shouldn't be unquestionable absolutes in the core rules unless its about balancing the system. Which they are not. Monks being lawful, bard not being lawful, and clerics not being neutral didn't and don't help the system. They might help world building, but that's only useful if you expect everyone to play in the same world.

Aelryinth wrote:
As for paladins of extreme alignments...'paladin' has a core meaning enshrined in the heart of grognards. If you want holy warriors of other alignments, just don't call them paladins, and don't make them paladin clones.

The paladin has changed a lot since it was first created. This isn't the same game the grognards from 1E remember. Sticking to old traditions because they stuck isn't always the best. Could you imagine if wizards had to go find bat guano in character or people died from system shock for being buffed?

Aelryinth wrote:

Why is the ranger good? Because rangers are definitely and completely based on the Aragorn of legend. 'ranger' means 'militaristic woodsman patrolling the frontier to defend against incursions of evil creatures' to people like us.

It does not mean 'hunter good at killing favored enemies.' A 'ranger' is a heroic word to us grognards. You want a hunter...a hunter can be of any alignment.

Aragorn was something special, not entirely human if I remember right.. I think you want an "Aragorn" class if you want to be Aragorn. The current woodsman style class fills a variety of roles however, and does many different things. Why can't a militaristic huntsman of the same training or abilities be evil or neutral or be anyone other than Aragorn? I think that's extremely limiting. There is one Aragorn. I'm fine with calling it hunter if that makes everyone happy. Mind you ranger has a definition of its own, unrelated to Aragorn..

Aelryinth wrote:

A CG holy warrior should NOT get all the goodies an LG paladin does. he doesn't operate under anywhere near the restrictions an LG paladin does. He'll make up for his lesser powers with fewer constraints on his activities...he can beat the LG paladin by not playing the same game.

That's REALLY hard to mechanically define, and its why so many people hate it. Having to make role playing choices to play this awesome class, when I want to have my cake and eat it too? We tend to lump it in with people creating their own custom PrC because they didn't get what they wanted out of this one or that one.

I would also like to point out that one of the things that the originial Paladin labored under was his tithing and wealth restrictions. To wit, he had to give away 10% of all his earnings to charity (usually his church), could not have more wealth then he could carry, and was limited to ten permanent magic items!

The game has removed all those monetary and magic item limits beyond the slot you equip them in. Again, by the same logic, all lawful characters should get more than chaotic because they have to live with being lawful. Chaotic characters also have to face tough decisions however. Does a chaotic fighter always beat a lawful fighter because he's chaotic?

Fluff and Mechanics don't always mesh well. Roleplaying and gaming styles vary greatly. What is important is to have good and flexible core rules. Anyone can face roleplaying choices as a character. You can play with a code as any character. You have personalities and goals. They are an entirely blank slate without any characterization, if you don't have mechanics enforcing how you roleplay. Roleplaying and fluff need to be handled with the table and GM. Enforcing a single ideal as fluff is just limiting.

I think your putting too much specialness in the name of something. When you play a fighter does he call himself a fighter all the time? When you play a monk is he not allowed to call himself a martial artist in game?


Paladins have a code of conduct they cannot deviate from. A character who does not break a code of conduct even if it seems to his best judgment that it's a really good idea to make an exception in a rare case is lawful.

Paladins are then good because the code of conduct they follow demands they "punish those who harm or threaten innocents" and avoid evil acts. Anyone who followed the paladin's code as closely as a paladin has to would, as a result of his consistent actions, be a lawful good character.

You could invent alternate "paladin" codes for LN or LE characters. Those would work well enough, though you'd have to modify the class abilities. To make a "paladin" of non-lawful alignment, you'd have to give them outs for the code of conduct wide enough they don't bind a character very much (such as the CE antipaladin's "provided such actions don't interfere with his goals" and "evil cares only about results").

On other class alignment restrictions, I'd lift them all, except on druids. Druids I'd just change. Druids should be putting "nature" first. To me that means they can't put the welfare of sapient creatures first, which means they cannot be good. Any other alignment could be justified, though.


see wrote:
Druids I'd just change. Druids should be putting "nature" first. To me that means they can't put the welfare of sapient creatures first, which means they cannot be good. Any other alignment could be justified, though.

Radagast the brown seemed like a good guy to me, if a little crazy. I could totally see someone caring for nature and other beings.

Shadow Lodge

Piccolo wrote:
The thing about Lawful vs Chaotic is Lawful takes the ethical bits out of Good and codifies them, then adheres.

Sure, but codification doesn't always improve things. Zero Tolerance policies and Three-Strikes laws are supposed to prevent authorities from being lax in enforcing the law and to keep repeat offenders from continuing to commit crimes, respectively, but in practice they prevent authorities from considering mitigating factors in a crime and perversely encourage people to commit worse crimes since "you might as well hang for a sheep as for a lamb."

A LG person will obviously attempt to change a law that doesn't actually serve the good, but that's a slow process. That's why people opposed slavery in two ways: trying to end it legally/lawfully, and helping current slaves to escape or rebel (the chaotic option).

Aelryinth wrote:

No, Kevin Sorbo doesn't. :) I'd say a paladin requires that sense...that doesn't mean other classes can't have it.

Since he doesn't have it, not a paladin! ;)

Did you check out Shuna? She has purpose.

MrSin wrote:
I once tried playing an absurdly and selfless good character I could and he turned into a NG druid. Unhindered by law/chaos, cared about nature, didn't really get into the whole society thing, but spent his whole first gaming session giving charity to a town and fellow players. The result was... Being told I wasn't being good enough, because I was willing to kill an evil creature, and therefore I was Pure Neutral, or worse chaotic Neutral. Sometimes you just can't be good enough. Meanwhile, the LG paladin who refused to kill anyone ever got a lot of love... Alignment arguments can really end up weird. They can be subjective, and you aren't always with like minded individuals on the subject.

That sounds kinda like my NG druid and the CG paladin, except no one gave either of us alignment grief and were were buds.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

+1 to killing alignment restrictions.


Aelryinth wrote:

a very specific context to us.

===Aelryinth

This is the key phrase. 'TO YOU'. So, what should happen, is that they open things up, and let the individual players and groups decide if they're going to restrict them. That way, you get the restrictions you want, and we don't have to deal with them. You lose nothing.

To me, a class is nothing more than a mechanical construct used, singularly or in tandem, and with other game elements, to realize a character concept. A Monk (class) doesn't have to be a monk (concept), or vice versa.

Dark Archive

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Petty Alchemy wrote:
+1 to killing alignment restrictions.

Ditto. The 'all Rangers must be Good' thing has gone away. The 'Bards can't be Lawful' thing has gone away. Neither change caused stars to fall from the sky.

I don't think axing the 'Barbarians can't be lawful' or 'Monks must be Lawful' alignment restrictions would break any seals or unleash any apocalypses. A berserker who enters a cold fury, or 'the zone,' or quiet state of focus and determination, mechanically functioning as a lawful raging Barbarian sounds perfectly on-theme. A martial artist who focuses on animal styles or dance or a philosophy of entering a state of no-mind or emulating the movements of the wind, and is non-Lawful, or even Chaotic, also seems reasonable.

As for Paladins, I didn't really like the nine Paladins from that ancient Dragon article, but very much did like the freeform Holy Warrior options from Green Ronin's Book of the Righteous (and the later Unholy Warrior options, from Unholy Warrior), and also liked the Unearthed Arcana 'Paladins' of Freedom, Corruption and Tyranny. That's cool.

I've played LG clerics and wizards, and never once thought that the alignment was somehow so magically harder than other alignments that I deserved special powers over non LG Clerics or Wizards, so I don't get where the martyr-y self-entitlement that 'Paladins have to be special-er because LG is so haaard' comes from.

LG, in my experience, is not hard to place (IMO, NG is easier than LG, and CG is harder, because, despite growing up in a more freedom-loving authority-suspicious society, I find Chaotic alignments to be less intuitive and 'easy' as a Lawful alignment that has clear cut rules and codes to follow).

CE, in my experience, is almost impossible to play without the session breaking down. Should they get special powers?

But, with all classes now being theoretically balanced and costing the same XP to advance (whether or not one agrees with the posit that a Monk and a Wizard are 'balanced'), there's literally no mechanical support for the 'Paladins have special powers because of X.' They don't. A Ranger or Barbarian also has special powers, and not at all 'because of X.'

Alignment restrictions haven't been about balance for decades (if, really, they ever were), but about 'theme' or, more recently, 'backwards-compatibility' and, IMO should be optional, as they only serve to restrict options, and not channel creativity (which is what restrictions of this sort should do).

Call the CG 'Paladin' of Cayden Cailean a Crusader or a Champion or a Holy Warrior, if the word Paladin is sacrosanct to you, but there's no reason to say that all CG holy champions are automatically going to be medium BAB Clerics or Inquisitors.

LG is not and never has been 'better good.'

Neutral Good is 'better good,' pure undiluted morality unfettered by kowtowing to undeserving hierarchy or inbred entitled aristocracy or possibly unjust or anachronistic or class-reinforcing rules of law. And NG doesn't deserve a special NG only Paladin that is 'better' than a LG or CG Paladin either.

A Paladin of CG Cayden (or a CG 'Paladin' of Cayden) isn't going to break anything, any more than Paladins of CG Sune (or Paladins and Monks being able to break multiclassing restrictions, in certain cases) broke the Forgotten Realms.

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I'm seeing a lot of very amusing commentary and pushback on what was a direct question from Alaryth to me.

I'm not going to respond to any of it, because it's all out of context. He wanted an opinion and answer, and I gave it to him.

Although I have to say, Mr. Sin, you REALLY were stretching on a couple of those criticisms you had.

==Aelryinth


Weirdo wrote:
Aelryinth wrote:
And Mr. Sin, that was a hugely silly and untrue example. It was very Lawful Stupid. You're assuming the paladin can't use the law against someone abusing the law.

And you're assuming there's a law they can use against the villain. There might not be - at least, not one that can be used in time to save the day. LE villains are very good at setting up layers of red tape for a LG hero to wade through, it's classier than trying to slow them down with disposable minions.

Aelryinth wrote:

Your CG paladin wanna-be can... sleep around...

MrSin wrote:
LG paladins can sleep around. Its not against their code.

Why is chastity so important for a paladin again?

Oh yeah, those Judeo-christian values being imported into a totally inappropriate context.

If you feel the CG paladin still needs some fluff restricitions, here is a list of choices:

  • Cannot assume titles of authority or use them in addressing others (ex: Your Highness, Your Honour)
  • Cannot participate in rituals of obedience (ex: bowing, doffing hats)
  • Cannot use or condone the use of magic interfering with free will, including Charm, Dominate, Suggestion, or Mark of Justice
  • Cannot keep a prisoner who prefers death to imprisonment
  • Cannot tolerate execution of persons for crimes that are not evil in nature (ex: adultery)
  • Cannot enter into or encourage others to enter into a binding contract (one that has penalties for breaking the contract beyond the loss of its benefits)
  • Cannot make promises, as this gives the impression of having entered into a verbal binding agreement. Instead of saying "I promise to save your brother" the CG paladin says "I intend to save your brother."

If you think being unable to forge documents is inconvenient for the LG paladin, wait until the CG paladin refuses to bow to the king. This is why the CG paladin is "hard mode" in my next campaign.

"But Weirdo, Chaotic people can do all those things!" Yes, and LG people can lie, cheat,...

This is a very good point in that, a character whose restrictions are meant to be as tight as a LG paladin must be equally as tight on the CG version. Your character cannot formally show respect to the concept of authority, you don't follow stupid mannerisms, and you don't believe in kings/royalty. Where a LG paladin sees himself as above those who lack his dedication, a CG one would see everyone as equal and seek to create communities where everyone is seen equally and can make their own choices.

Also, paladins can totally sleep around. They are super studs, that's like, one of the main perks (fluff-wise) to being a paladin.

All of that said, I would very much like to see the alignment restriction completely removed, or at least the code of conduct that so many people try and interpret to constantly try and make paladins fall for doing something, or make them fall for not doing it.

I would even be okay with a code of conduct that said something like: "Respect authority, don't lie, don't cheat," but left the alignment open.

The main problem I think people have is that Smite Evil is such a powerful class feature. If all it did was add to attack bonus and damage (without bypassing DR or gaining that reflection bonus to AC) just letting them have a generic Smite attack that worked on anything wouldn't be that bad.


Quiet a bit of it was about paladins. You could respond to that, rather than brush them off. That would be on topic wouldn't it?

What did I stretch? Quiet a bit of what I said pertained to paladins. The most important parts I'd say are that alignment restrictions and the like should be at the "table level" where world building takes place, rather than at the "system level" where your tool kit comes from. I'd much rather see more things modular or interchangeable with lots of options than a lot of material that's restricted due to fluff that someone else uses.

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Sleeping around is generally considered chaotic behavior. Paladins are highly encouraged not to be lusty as a result. Fidelity to relationships is a historic paladin trait, as is romantic/courtly love.

CG does not mean communist (which is actually an LN philosophy). There can be tremendous imbalance in CG, because stuff goes to those who can claim it, and a CG would fight against the very idea that the profits of his labor would go to ANYONE else, be it a neighbor or the government.

It additionally does not hurt the CG paladin to lie, cheat and steal for a good cause. These are simply generic actions that are not allowed to LG paladins. The CG paladin is also perfectly free to tell the truth when it suits him, keep his word, and give generously to charity...all Lawful behaviors, but also good, and certainly not against his code.

==Aelryinth


Sleeping around is highly chaotic? Says who? There are plenty of agreements and business involved in it sometimes. How you go about things varies greatly.

I think that's taking a ridiculous extreme.

I think your playing in a game with restrictions rather than looking at how the character would act. Regardless of whether it hurt the CG paladin or not, he still has to think about other people. That's sort of how being good works. Your also creating your own CG paladin and making him a villain, rather than making one you would consider heroic.


I think I'll try a building exercise real fast.

Chevalier David:
We have a guy. Lets call him David. David is young, and he's lucky enough to hold the position of Chevalier. He's also not good at following rules. He parties a lot, and he worships Cayden. In fact, he spends most free nights at Cayden's temple 'worshipping'. He gets along well with the locals, but not so much with the elders who keep telling him how to do things. He's always doing the right thing and helping old ladies across the street and saving cats from trees, and even occasionally fighting off the demon hordes or the undead monstrosities that pop up here and there. He doesn't really sleep around, he definitely doesn't lie much, and he's definitely skilled with a blade. Chevalier David has very little respect for authority however, breaks many rules, and has terrible discipline according to any of his teachers. David, when times are slow, often leaves home to adventure. He's not in it for the glory, but he likes to get away from all the mess with schooling and responsibility, and he feels like he does much more away from home and being proactive.

So we have Chevalier David, good and helpful guy and demon and undead slayer. David is not constantly stealing, breaking the law on purpose, or using underhanded tricks to get by, in fact he's actively proactive and helping people. He however, has little discipline, and even goes adventuring for his own reasons. Is David an okay idea for a CG holy warrior?


Aelryinth, thank you for the honest response. All that Alignment restrictions thing has always interested me for my personal history with D&D.

I arrived at D&D 2 Edition from The Lord of the Rings (red book, ICE). Then, I really liked the few tables. My first character was a bard elf for Dragonlance. She was CG, and I loved the character. Even today, half the characters I made for videogames are based on her. But halfway the campaign, reading the Player's Handbook I find, surprised, that the character was illegal; she couldn't CG, must be NG. I was shocked. The DM wanted to change the alignment to NG, but finally we agreed to continue as CG. And the character was better for that. Latter, on 3.0, the combination was suddenly legal, but the campaign has ended years before.

Every edition has less and less restrictions about character's building; 3.0 lacked the race/class limitations, and step by step the alignment ones are going away. None of the Pathfinder ones have that kind of limitations except antipaladin, a very special case. And I find that for the better. I'm pretty sure that when a new Edition of Pathfinder arrives, there will be less limitations still.

Edit: All that said, I'm a bit undecided on the Paladin. I love the four extreme options, and have been doing them for some time without problems. But I can understand the opposition for them. The others, specially Druid and Monk... kill it with fire.

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