Why are some people so dead set on trying to get rid of the Paladin's alignment restriction?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Let's just start off with a caveat: The following is my opinion.

The paladin is not the champion of lawful good. The paladin is the champion of Good. It is the strict adherence to the Paladin's code that makes him lawful. The Paladin is Good and only Good, no exceptions. Chaotic and Neutral Good allow for exceptions.

I think a lot of the "Paladin Hate" comes from players who want to play a character how they want to (which is fine, not trying to present that as a negative), while a paladin has to be played as their code dictates.

So again (in my opinion), a Paladin is not Lawful Good. A Paladin is Good, lawfully.


shallowsoul wrote:
Being a pure hearted champion of good is the core of the Paladin.

This screams Neutral Good to me not Lawful Good. I also personally find the other restrictions that have been mentioned in this thread and agree with what others have said.

I also find other alignment restrictions stupid such as Necromancy and Intelligent free willed Undead always being evil; but enough about that back to Paladins I think it would be better if they were restricted to Any Good, Anti-Paladins to Any Evil, and finally another class similar to them which could be Any Neutral and could decided to Smite an alignment that doesn't match theirs(LN can pick Chaos, Good, or Evil), Channel Positive or Negative(Which would decided if they get Lay of Hands/Touch of Corruption and Mercies/Cruelties), their weapons are as their alignment and they get DR opposite that(LN weapons Lawful DR/Chaotic Neutral picks one and it can't be changed), etc.


Scavion wrote:
Adjule wrote:
Game mechanics-wise, non-metal armor wearing druids allows there to be a reason why dragon-hide armor exists. Because who besides a druid would ever wear dragon-hide armor when they can wear mithral?

Because dragon-hide armor is bad ass?

Dragonhide wrote:
If the dragonhide comes from a dragon that had immunity to an energy type, the armor is also immune to that energy type, although this does not confer any protection to the wearer. If the armor or shield is later given the ability to protect the wearer against that energy type, the cost to add such protection is reduced by 25%.
Plus cheaper resistance enchantments?

I completely agree, and have had a couple characters (non-druids) wear dragon-hide armor. But I have never seen anyone else do so, as they can wear mithral armor. And dragon-hide is the only special material armor for druids (though some do get permanent ironwood armor) that can be applied to metal armor.


Adjule wrote:
Scavion wrote:
Adjule wrote:
Game mechanics-wise, non-metal armor wearing druids allows there to be a reason why dragon-hide armor exists. Because who besides a druid would ever wear dragon-hide armor when they can wear mithral?

Because dragon-hide armor is bad ass?

Dragonhide wrote:
If the dragonhide comes from a dragon that had immunity to an energy type, the armor is also immune to that energy type, although this does not confer any protection to the wearer. If the armor or shield is later given the ability to protect the wearer against that energy type, the cost to add such protection is reduced by 25%.
Plus cheaper resistance enchantments?
I completely agree, and have had a couple characters (non-druids) wear dragon-hide armor. But I have never seen anyone else do so, as they can wear mithral armor. And dragon-hide is the only special material armor for druids (though some do get permanent ironwood armor) that can be applied to metal armor.

I would say you see no one use Dragonhide because it's pretty bleh, as well as obscure, and saying Druids shouldn't be able to use metal armor strictly to justify it existing?... Don't really know how to respond to that.


Because mechanics should always trump flavor.


Eh. Mechanics trumping flavor doesn't work so well when the flavor is part of the mechanics.


MagusJanus wrote:
Eh. Mechanics trumping flavor doesn't work so well when the flavor is part of the mechanics.

If you go all the way flavor though, your liable to create some horrific inflexible possibly imba' abomination. If your making that for a community to use, you might have to prepare for pitchforks and torches, because people tend to want a lot of different things and a lack of flexibility might not end too well.

At least people sometimes point the pitchforks at each other instead of you.


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I prefer flavor and mechanics to be blended such that they support and espouse what the flavor is supposed to describe.

Probably why I have such issues with Rogues and Fighters.


Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:

Let's just start off with a caveat: The following is my opinion.

The paladin is not the champion of lawful good. The paladin is the champion of Good. It is the strict adherence to the Paladin's code that makes him lawful. The Paladin is Good and only Good, no exceptions. Chaotic and Neutral Good allow for exceptions.

I think a lot of the "Paladin Hate" comes from players who want to play a character how they want to (which is fine, not trying to present that as a negative), while a paladin has to be played as their code dictates.

So again (in my opinion), a Paladin is not Lawful Good. A Paladin is Good, lawfully.

That may be the case if the code does not specifically say MUST MAINTAIN GOOD AND LAWFUL ALIGNMENT. So the Paladin is both GOOD and LAWFUL.


K177Y C47 wrote:
Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:

Let's just start off with a caveat: The following is my opinion.

The paladin is not the champion of lawful good. The paladin is the champion of Good. It is the strict adherence to the Paladin's code that makes him lawful. The Paladin is Good and only Good, no exceptions. Chaotic and Neutral Good allow for exceptions.

I think a lot of the "Paladin Hate" comes from players who want to play a character how they want to (which is fine, not trying to present that as a negative), while a paladin has to be played as their code dictates.

So again (in my opinion), a Paladin is not Lawful Good. A Paladin is Good, lawfully.

That may be the case if the code does not specifically say MUST MAINTAIN GOOD AND LAWFUL ALIGNMENT. So the Paladin is both GOOD and LAWFUL.

I'm not sure I understand your comment. I said the Paladin was both good and lawful.


I agree with stonebreacker that paladins are Good lawfully. it is one of the best blends of mechanics and flavor of the game that has lasted though 5 editions of the game and even made it into the zeitgeist of our culture. I like it that way. but this game has always been about doing your own thing. you want CG and NG paladins then by all means play it that way at home.


Kryzbyn wrote:
Because mechanics should always trump flavor.

I disagree. IMO mechanics exist only to support flavor.


Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:
I think a lot of the "Paladin Hate" comes from players who want to play a character how they want to (which is fine, not trying to present that as a negative), while a paladin has to be played as their code dictates.

Yeah. Most of the issues I see people having the Paladin boil down to just how tightly restricted the class' flavor is. A lot of players don't like being narrowly pigeonholed into a single specific character type, and no class is more prone to that than the Paladin. If a fighter or wizard is played in a unique or different way, everything's cool. If the Paladin is, you're risking a fall and/or table drama unless everyone agrees that your character is acting appropriately for a Paladin.

Any rules that seem arbitrary or overly restrictive will tend to get players annoyed. The Paladin gets the most attention of any class because his roleplaying restrictions are by far the tightest and most narrowly defined. At base, it's the same reason players don't like being told "Your dwarf must be bearded, drink heavily, and have a scottish accent" or "Your elf must be a snooty uptight tree-hugger." Players generally want to be free to define their characters as they wish, not have someone else's vision imposed on them. And no class is more prone to having other people's ideas of how it ought to be played imposed than the Paladin.


JoeJ wrote:
Kryzbyn wrote:
Because mechanics should always trump flavor.
I disagree. IMO mechanics exist only to support flavor.

Imo, good mechanics can be refluffed, bad mechanics can destroy your game. If you make everything based around one singular inflexible fluff, your going to end up with a very limited number of characters and personalities available.


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JoeJ wrote:
Kryzbyn wrote:
Because mechanics should always trump flavor.

I disagree. IMO mechanics exist only to support flavor.

You can't make a game that way. That sort of thinking is what directly leads to stuff like godlike casters spitting on non-casters "Because it makes sense in the flavor!".

It never ends well.

The two things should be as separate as possible. The flavor should not inform the mechanics. The mechanics should not inform the flavor.

They should complement each other, but not INTERFERE with each other.

Flavor: "I swing my sword in a vicious overhand chop, putting all my strength behind it."

Mechanics: "I Power Attacked him."

This is good. Flavor is what fleshes the world out, but it's not interfering with anything, merely enhancing it.

Now have another example, a new version of Power Attack.

"When you swing your sword overhanded, you may take a -1 penalty on attack rolls to gain +2 to damage".

This is bad. The flavor has now restricted Power Attack to overhanded attacks with a sword.

It is interfering with the mechanics, imposing restrictions for no purpose, and adding nothing by its presence.

Now replace the new Power Attack with the Paladin's Code or a Monk's Lawful-only restriction.

Still bad.


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Because Being a Paladin, is a JOB, not an adventure.

The fatal flaw lies in the NON-description of the acting paladin.
Would he kill in this situation?
Run in this situation?
Fight and die in this situation?
spare an enemy in this situation?

We don't know. All we know is that paladins are MOST THINGS EVERYBODY AIN'T. yeah, I said ain't.

All rolled up into one.

Since people have NO WRITTEN CODE TO FOLLOW ("Jus Be Good, Baby") people playing paladins tend to take it to EXTREMES.

Paladin? Oh boy, table shrug. Because depending on the person playing the paladin...

1. Now we cant make deals with the enemy - they all must die or be brought to justice. Can't make a deal with a dirty cleric to catch a devil, gotta cut a swath of non-information providing justice everywhere.
2. Kill a school full of children? It's back to the jails with you bad man - our quest will have to wait as we march 23 days BACK TO TOWN to deliver him to the authorities.
3. 6 days before our companion dies? Must travel through undead territory? Ooh wait, we've stumbled upon a town where 6,123 old ladies need to cross the street, go on without me - I'll be here a couple of months.
4. Let me be annoying and try to convert you to justice all day and show you my moral superiority - yes, being good like I am requires me to be the ethical equivalent of a Jehovah's witness in your game.
5. It's the stealth or guile equivalent of wearing a red sweatband and pink hot pants and no shirt to a formal dinner. All dialogue is direct, righteous, and evil thwarting.

My problem is - no one ever displays WHAT A PALADINS LIMITATIONS ARE - how much can he do?

Since there is none - Players take the little of Selfless good they know in the world and crank it up to 11.

If the rules don't change (and I do not recommend breath holding)

These are the kind of questions to answer that would make paladins more playable.

Can paladins flirt? chase girls?
Could I make a dirty deal with a slave trader? Turn my head and let him run to catch his boss? maybe IF he gives up information?
Can I lie? Can I lie to save my or someone else's life?
Can I lie to evil?
Can I kill evil where it stands in whatever form? Or must I bring only humanoids to justice?
Do I have to bring anybody to justice?
Can I smite all evil and let my god sort them out?
Can a paladin knowingly let someone walk into a trap? if their evil?
Can a paladin set a trap? if their evil?
Can a paladin enjoy gold? Getting rich? After all if you are all for law and order, that requires taxes, and taxes require money.
Can paladins own businesses?
Visit Cat houses? Pubs? Gambling dens?
Can paladins make a deal with a lower level evil to get his hands on and slay a greater evil?
Can it trap evil by pretending to do it a favor, then turn around and trap or kill them both?
Can a paladin don a disguise?
Can paladins act as if they are at least aware that the rest of the world is indeed selfish and/or evil and adjust accordingly? While also obeying their code?
which still doesn't exist (cough, cough, print a book)

Because the easiest way to die and be least effective with their life is to start unruly fights and charge the biggest foe at lvl 1? Tiny dogs do that, well most do anyway.

(sidenote: Maybe tiny dogs are paladins?)

Can paladins act as IF THEY CAN REALIZE THAT NATURE IS GODS free for ALL buffet/royal rumble/wwa smackdown and THAT ALL wild creatures eat each other EVERYDAY and will EAT YOUR FACE, so they can drop the salvation for 5 minutes? They can also stop trying to sing to canaries and trying to get the canary to sing back solo in response?

Can a paladin NOT give money to an alchoholic beggar? A normal beggar? Any other?

any point could be argued.

But the tendency (at least I have seen) is for people to play paladin's like

Holy, Socially, and Mentally, Impaired People.

"MY God telleth me to SMASH!"

So what if any are the RULES FOR PLAYING A GOOD PALADIN.

I don't remember where it was - but somebody in the forums references a list of non-normal paladins that were listed in fantasy stories.

Far from the ones I have seen. They were holy-devout and just,
but they kicked but, drank beer, some gambled, and some lied.

And they were still holy at the end of the day.

Nobody has the rules, but everyone can go "Oooh that's NOT what a paladin would do, because its not the opposite/holy/neutralized intellectual/backwards casting/more work making version of what I would do."

Playing pathfinder is fun.

Playing a paladin, is an ENTRY LEVEL CARPENTER'S JOB in a fictional universe with STRICT REGULATIONS, HIGH FATALITY RATE, AND GREAT PAY AND ASTOUNDING BENEFITS.

Your Tool belt: 1 hammer of justice

All of the rest of the world: Nails.

Really.

You sit down at the table to Play your character. You are ready to enjoy.

Unless the highlight of your day is to "Rules and Order Up" and you somehow unwind that way,

You punch the clock - and get to dispensing justice and railroading/destroying/sidestepping any intrigue that might have been placed or developed in any campaign.


I actually prefer the paladin the way it is. I merely answered the OP's question with the most true response.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

Power shouldn't be gated by alignment restrictions anyway.


shallowsoul wrote:

Druid: A druid who wears prohibited armor or uses a prohibited

shield is unable to cast druid spells or use any of her
supernatural or spell-like class abilities while doing so
and for 24 hours thereafter.

Barbarian: Any nonlawful

Clerics: A cleric who grossly violates the code of conduct required
by her god loses all spells and class features, except for
armor and shield proficiencies and proficiency with
simple weapons. She cannot thereafter gain levels as a
cleric of that god until she atones for her deeds (see the
atonement spell description). A cleric’s alignment must be within one
step of her deity’s, along either the law/chaos axis or the
good/evil axis (see Chapter 7).

These classes here have restrictions as well.

And, similarly, they are all bullcrap.


MagusJanus wrote:
Eh. Mechanics trumping flavor doesn't work so well when the flavor is part of the mechanics.

Which shouldn't happen.


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Rynjin wrote:
JoeJ wrote:
Kryzbyn wrote:
Because mechanics should always trump flavor.

I disagree. IMO mechanics exist only to support flavor.

You can't make a game that way. That sort of thinking is what directly leads to stuff like godlike casters spitting on non-casters "Because it makes sense in the flavor!".

It never ends well.

The two things should be as separate as possible. The flavor should not inform the mechanics. The mechanics should not inform the flavor.

If neither one is informing the other, it's pretty much inevitable they'll end up in contradiction.

As I see it, mechanics in an RPG is what lets a group tell shared stories without endless arguments over who killed whom. Flavor is the stories. It's why you're all sitting there around the table instead of at home watching TV.


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I think the one of the big questions at the heart of the matter is "How much flavor should come out of obedience to the rulebook and/or the conventions of the game, and how much should be added by the player when making their character?" I think most of the people who would like to see things like the Paladin's alignment restrictions relaxed or removed believe that most of the flavor for a character comes from the player, not the rulebook.


JoeJ wrote:

As I see it, mechanics in an RPG is what lets a group tell shared stories without endless arguments over who killed whom.

Been there, done that.

Free form RPGs, especially PbP offer a nice freedom to explore a gripping narrative so much better than mechanical table top games, but that freedom just as easily gives said RPG enough rope to hang itself.

Table Top RPGs, aside from being able to tell a narrative in a way that players can cope with, also makes a fun board game.


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Players want to remove the LG restriction as they fear to fall, which comes from a lot of DMs which force Paladins into situations where they have to fall (Goblin Babies, LG Goblin tribes, Evil Orcs which aren't evil, just forced to do such things etc.). Also some DMs (and players) overinterprete the alignment.

The reason for this is that most "modern" players/DMs aren't use to the alignment system at all, they have the "game of thrones"-everyone-is-everything approach.

But D&D in it's core was a game of heroic, stylized fantasy, which means there is a clear good/evil axxis. Good and Evil ARE real powers in this world (like Fire or Gravity).

Also some people want to have the goodies of a paladin without the restriction (Paladins are a powerfull class).
If you want a non LG Paladin, play a Cleric, Fighter/Cleric/HV, Inquisitor or go for Divine Scion... but no they don't have this cool lay on hands, Cha to Saves etc. ;)

For me a Paladin have to be LG, why?
Because he's a champion of good (Good) who follows his own code as good as he can (Lawful).

P.S.:
You cna play a bad ass Paladin and still be LG (e.g. Bowen from Dragonheart). Did it myself once in 3.5 (dirty, battle-worn armor, two longswords at the back, always looking out for a fight (against the evil)... my group didn't realized I'm a Paladin before level 4))

P.P.S.:
Same goes for the Lawfull component at monks (they have a ordered mind and follow their own code), chaotic at Barbarians (this is where they got their power from, from their wild, uncontrollable side), no worked metal at druids (oath) etc.

For all the "alignment is bad" people out there, I would ask you to re-read the alignment pages in the CRB.


Chengar Qordath wrote:
I think most of the people who would like to see things like the Paladin's alignment restrictions relaxed or removed believe that most of the flavor for a character comes from the player, not the rulebook.

I'd say that's pretty correct about me, for what its worth. I like examples of what kinds of characters can be created, but being pigeonholed or arbitrarily forced into one isn't one I'm a big fan of. Sort of awkward to be told your supposed to life to be someone else's character rather than crafting your own. Comes with a plethora of problems of its own, but some guy named Chengar has been really good at listing them so its hard to add in...

Seriously though, could you imagine if another class like barbarians had a barbarian code about being tribal and uncivilized? Or rogue's had to steal things and couldn't make long-term alliances.


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Chengar Qordath wrote:
I think the one of the big questions at the heart of the matter is "How much flavor should come out of obedience to the rulebook and/or the conventions of the game, and how much should be added by the player when making their character?" I think most of the people who would like to see things like the Paladin's alignment restrictions relaxed or removed believe that most of the flavor for a character comes from the player, not the rulebook.

Personally I see two different levels here, with issues compounded by the two being squished together.

There's the core rulebook, which is supposed to allow you to play any setting you wish with it. To me, this implies the base classes ought to be pretty generic. Individual campaigns could be placed anywhere, so it ought to be up to players and GMs to flavor the classes to fit.

Then there's the Golarion setting. This is where I feel the majority of flavor restrictions should come into play. For the most part, player freedom can only go so far if you're adhering to the setting - although of course individual tables may decide to diverge as much as they wish. However, it makes sense that the rules would adhere to the setting requirements here, and leave any tweaks or changes up to individual tables to implement.

The issues stem, I guess, from Golarion originating from 3.5's default assumptions, and the CRB then being required to also do the same. We're then left with the inherited 3.5 Paladin, when a more generic "Holy Warrior" class might have been more appropriate if designed from scratch (with a "Paladin" archetype or PrC that can then be applied in the Golarion setting itself)

The reasons things are the way they are are fairly obvious. That doesn't mean they're right, just that there wasn't really that much choice at the time to do it differently. Perhaps the best fix (in terms of what could actually be done right now) would be to stop worrying about the Paladin class as it stands, and introduce that generic "Holy Warrior" (with different archetypes for different alignments) instead.


I don't mind the alignment of paladin much. But if I could rewrite the rules, I will make it non chaotic, good. For anti paladin, any evil.

I see that you can be normal person who is chosen by god because you are good, or you are lawful, doesn't have to be both. Your skills exceed others and the organisation want you to be there champion. You can be their champion, blessed by their god, but doesn't have to follow rules all the time even if it's wrong and evil. Anti paladin can be lawful evil if they want. Imagine the high overlord of holy champions is evil when his followers are blindly following him in the name of good. It would be fun. And true paladin will break rules, start war against nobles and royals for the people who has been suffering from high tax and slavery.

Assassin should be able to be chaotic neutral too. Someone hired me to do the job, I get the job done. I'm just a gun, those people are the monsters who pointing it.

But then against Pathfinder has many flews everywhere mechanical wise. I hope D&D next are better.


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Quote:
And true paladin will break rules, start war against nobles and royals for the people who has been suffering from high tax and slavery.

And you can do this also with LG alignment. Lawfull only means you stick to a code of conduct, this could be the law or your own code (example (again): Bowen, Dragonheart)


^^^ this

If Being Lawful required you to obey the laws of your area, then every Paladin that walks into Cheliax would pretty much immediately fall...

Silver Crusade

Decimus Drake wrote:

I don't think the wizard without spells is a good analogy since a Wizard without spells is just a physically weak intelligent guy whereas a Paladin minus the alignment restriction still has a a range of martial and divine abilities.

I think what people want is not the mechanics without the restrictions but rather they want the mechanics of the Paladin but with the restrictions of a different code other then lawful good. An example could be a LN Paladin of a LN god that opposes oath-breakers - their purpose would be to bring individuals who break oaths and contracts to justice regardless of the reasons that individual breaks the oath in question. A pure champion of Law.

Actually, it's a spot on analogy.

Arcane magic is what defines a wizard, always has. Lawful good has always defined a paladin and of you take that away then the paladin no longer exists, it becomes something else. This isn't about mechanics, this is about what defines a paladin.

The abilities of the paladin have changed through the years, but the thing that has always remained was they had to be lawful good.

Silver Crusade

kyrt-ryder wrote:

Because the Paladin is a cool class with nice mechanics which is overly restricted by alignment restrictions.

(Also, Anti-paladin code screws them out of ever being a reliable party member)

So basically you just want access to cool mechanics without the restrictions?

This is an RPG BTW.


shallowsoul wrote:


Actually, it's a spot on analogy.

Arcane magic is what defines a wizard, always has. Lawful good has always defined a paladin and of you take that away then the paladin no longer exists, it becomes something else. This isn't about mechanics, this is about what defines a paladin.

The abilities of the paladin have changed through the years, but the thing that has always remained was they had to be lawful good.

I agree with that. However, I see "Paladin" as being the "Lawful Good" entry in what should ideally be an array of holy warrior archetypes (each with their own alignment-flavored abilities and variations on restrictions, codes, and penalties for breaking them), or PrCs to advance to from a more generic base class.

Alternatively, strip the class of a few abilities in return for losing the restrictions, and allow taking the restriction as an option (which then gains you the extra abilities in return.)

The Exchange

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shallowsoul wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:

Because the Paladin is a cool class with nice mechanics which is overly restricted by alignment restrictions.

(Also, Anti-paladin code screws them out of ever being a reliable party member)

So basically you just want access to cool mechanics without the restrictions?

This is an RPG BTW.

I imagine he just wants to have people not tell him how to play his character.


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"Let me make a thread aggressively accosting others on why they don't like the alignment restrictions on the Paladin and when they give reasons why, mock their reasons."

Maybe just maybe, you'll realize that alignment restrictions only limit roleplaying experience.


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shallowsoul wrote:
Decimus Drake wrote:

I don't think the wizard without spells is a good analogy since a Wizard without spells is just a physically weak intelligent guy whereas a Paladin minus the alignment restriction still has a a range of martial and divine abilities.

I think what people want is not the mechanics without the restrictions but rather they want the mechanics of the Paladin but with the restrictions of a different code other then lawful good. An example could be a LN Paladin of a LN god that opposes oath-breakers - their purpose would be to bring individuals who break oaths and contracts to justice regardless of the reasons that individual breaks the oath in question. A pure champion of Law.

Actually, it's a spot on analogy.

Arcane magic is what defines a wizard, always has. Lawful good has always defined a paladin and of you take that away then the paladin no longer exists, it becomes something else. This isn't about mechanics, this is about what defines a paladin.

The abilities of the paladin have changed through the years, but the thing that has always remained was they had to be lawful good.

Except this is false comparison. So does the Barbarian's Non-lawful-ness define him? Does the Druid's neutrality define him? No. The Barbarian is defined by his rage. When people thing barb, they thing raging hulking fighter, not chaotically aligned dude. For dude people think of the shapechanging, their nature themed spells, and their nature-y abilities.

The Paladin is defined not by his alignment, but by his opposition to his alignment. People don't think of the (anti)paladin as the LG guy. The (Anti)Paladin is defined as the (Dark)Shining Knight who smites (Good)evil with (un)holy power and is blessed by the (Profane)divine. That can easily be described in nearly any alignment so long as the paladin holds true to his god...

Silver Crusade

Scythia wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Being a pure hearted champion of good is the core of the Paladin. It would be like taking magic away from a Wizard, lawful good is what makes the Paladin what it is.

The problem is that many people disagree with this. To me, being a warrior that has divine abilities is what makes a Paladin what it is. Because a full BAB, divinely empowered, minor divine caster is what a Paladin is. It is reasonably easy to describe them as martial champions of a faith, but there are gods that are not lawful good. Some people enjoy having divinely empowered warriors that represent other gods than the lawful good ones.

To many people, lawful good is what prevents the Paladin from being a useful class.

Divorce yourself from the mechanics for a moment. A divine warrior and a champion of the faith is nothing but a cleric, always has been.

Being Lawful Good is what makes a paladin what it is. A paladin is not a champion of the faith, it is a champion of the most good and pure hearted as you can get, which BTW os the lawful good alignment. If you want an actual divine warrior who has partial divine magic then a fighter/cleric is what you want, but then again it's not the most optimal.


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shallowsoul wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:

Because the Paladin is a cool class with nice mechanics which is overly restricted by alignment restrictions.

(Also, Anti-paladin code screws them out of ever being a reliable party member)

So basically you just want access to cool mechanics without the restrictions?

This is an RPG BTW.

And? The mechanics of the Paladin are interesting and sometimes people want to play a Paladin-esque character, but wants to play as say... a harbinger of Law and the absolution of law. The Warpriest, the cleric, and the Inquisitor can mimic it to some extent but lacks things like Smite that really bring the flavor to the forefront. Say, as an LN "Paladin" you would have Smite Chaos, and you would basically be flavored as smiting down chaos with the absolute power of law.

Oh BTW, this is a RPG...i.e. YOU PLAY ROLES... WHATEVER ROLE YOU WANT...

Silver Crusade

K177Y C47 wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Decimus Drake wrote:

I don't think the wizard without spells is a good analogy since a Wizard without spells is just a physically weak intelligent guy whereas a Paladin minus the alignment restriction still has a a range of martial and divine abilities.

I think what people want is not the mechanics without the restrictions but rather they want the mechanics of the Paladin but with the restrictions of a different code other then lawful good. An example could be a LN Paladin of a LN god that opposes oath-breakers - their purpose would be to bring individuals who break oaths and contracts to justice regardless of the reasons that individual breaks the oath in question. A pure champion of Law.

Actually, it's a spot on analogy.

Arcane magic is what defines a wizard, always has. Lawful good has always defined a paladin and of you take that away then the paladin no longer exists, it becomes something else. This isn't about mechanics, this is about what defines a paladin.

The abilities of the paladin have changed through the years, but the thing that has always remained was they had to be lawful good.

Except this is false comparison. So does the Barbarian's Non-lawful-ness define him? Does the Druid's neutrality define him? No. The Barbarian is defined by his rage. When people thing barb, they thing raging hulking fighter, not chaotically aligned dude. For dude people think of the shapechanging, their nature themed spells, and their nature-y abilities.

The Paladin is defined not by his alignment, but by his opposition to his alignment. People don't think of the (anti)paladin as the LG guy. The (Anti)Paladin is defined as the (Dark)Shining Knight who smites (Good)evil with (un)holy power and is blessed by the (Profane)divine. That can easily be described in nearly any alignment so long as the paladin holds true to his god...

It's not a false comparison not matter how badly you think different. If you know anything about the history of the paladin then you will know that being lawful good is what makes a paladin what it is, just like a wizard and spells.


shallowsoul wrote:
Scythia wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Being a pure hearted champion of good is the core of the Paladin. It would be like taking magic away from a Wizard, lawful good is what makes the Paladin what it is.

The problem is that many people disagree with this. To me, being a warrior that has divine abilities is what makes a Paladin what it is. Because a full BAB, divinely empowered, minor divine caster is what a Paladin is. It is reasonably easy to describe them as martial champions of a faith, but there are gods that are not lawful good. Some people enjoy having divinely empowered warriors that represent other gods than the lawful good ones.

To many people, lawful good is what prevents the Paladin from being a useful class.

Divorce yourself from the mechanics for a moment. A divine warrior and a champion of the faith is nothing but a cleric, always has been.

Being Lawful Good is what makes a paladin what it is. A paladin is not a champion of the faith, it is a champion of the most good and pure hearted as you can get, which BTW os the lawful good alignment. If you want an actual divine warrior who has partial divine magic then a fighter/cleric is what you want, but then again it's not the most optimal.

No... the cleric has always been the priest.. the pastor.. the minister of faith. The cleric has always been the divine equivalent to a wizard. The armor and BAB was given to them because their spells are not quite as potent in combat as a wizard and so the creators gave them a bone to help balance it out a bit vs arcanes.


shallowsoul wrote:


Divorce yourself from the mechanics for a moment. A divine warrior and a champion of the faith is nothing but a cleric, always has been.

Being Lawful Good is what makes a paladin what it is. A paladin is not a champion of the faith, it is a champion of the most good and pure hearted as you can get, which BTW os the lawful good alignment. If you want an actual divine warrior who has partial divine magic then a fighter/cleric is what you want, but then again it's not the most optimal.

That actually feels like it would fit exactly with a "Paladin as a setting-themed PrC" (for Golarion and any number of other settings that have Paladins) concept. The only issue would be then it'd hinge on multiclassing being rebalanced before many people would want to touch it (personally I'm a big fan of multiclassing simply from the PoV of being able to customize the character to get something more unique than just bolting a feat or two on top.)

Silver Crusade

K177Y C47 wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:

Because the Paladin is a cool class with nice mechanics which is overly restricted by alignment restrictions.

(Also, Anti-paladin code screws them out of ever being a reliable party member)

So basically you just want access to cool mechanics without the restrictions?

This is an RPG BTW.

And? The mechanics of the Paladin are interesting and sometimes people want to play a Paladin-esque character, but wants to play as say... a harbinger of Law and the absolution of law. The Warpriest, the cleric, and the Inquisitor can mimic it to some extent but lacks things like Smite that really bring the flavor to the forefront. Say, as an LN "Paladin" you would have Smite Chaos, and you would basically be flavored as smiting down chaos with the absolute power of law.

Oh BTW, this is a RPG...i.e. YOU PLAY ROLES... WHATEVER ROLE YOU WANT...

In a homebrew game you can play what ever you want, but this isn't the homebrew section. We are discussing the default of the game which cannot be ignored in these conversations. Can you play any way you want? Sure you can, but the game is set up with a specific default flavour and that flavour has carried on for over 30 years now.

Dismissing the lawful good alignment with the paladin is dismissing the paladin itself. If you remove the restriction you no longer have a paladin, you have something else.

Silver Crusade

K177Y C47 wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Scythia wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Being a pure hearted champion of good is the core of the Paladin. It would be like taking magic away from a Wizard, lawful good is what makes the Paladin what it is.

The problem is that many people disagree with this. To me, being a warrior that has divine abilities is what makes a Paladin what it is. Because a full BAB, divinely empowered, minor divine caster is what a Paladin is. It is reasonably easy to describe them as martial champions of a faith, but there are gods that are not lawful good. Some people enjoy having divinely empowered warriors that represent other gods than the lawful good ones.

To many people, lawful good is what prevents the Paladin from being a useful class.

Divorce yourself from the mechanics for a moment. A divine warrior and a champion of the faith is nothing but a cleric, always has been.

Being Lawful Good is what makes a paladin what it is. A paladin is not a champion of the faith, it is a champion of the most good and pure hearted as you can get, which BTW os the lawful good alignment. If you want an actual divine warrior who has partial divine magic then a fighter/cleric is what you want, but then again it's not the most optimal.

No... the cleric has always been the priest.. the pastor.. the minister of faith. The cleric has always been the divine equivalent to a wizard. The armor and BAB was given to them because their spells are not quite as potent in combat as a wizard and so the creators gave them a bone to help balance it out a bit vs arcanes.

Ehhhhh no.

The default cleric was a full plate wearing, shield toting, mace swinging warrior of the faith.

You could choose to wear no armour and carry no weapon but that wasn't the default.


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shallowsoul wrote:
K177Y C47 wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Decimus Drake wrote:

I don't think the wizard without spells is a good analogy since a Wizard without spells is just a physically weak intelligent guy whereas a Paladin minus the alignment restriction still has a a range of martial and divine abilities.

I think what people want is not the mechanics without the restrictions but rather they want the mechanics of the Paladin but with the restrictions of a different code other then lawful good. An example could be a LN Paladin of a LN god that opposes oath-breakers - their purpose would be to bring individuals who break oaths and contracts to justice regardless of the reasons that individual breaks the oath in question. A pure champion of Law.

Actually, it's a spot on analogy.

Arcane magic is what defines a wizard, always has. Lawful good has always defined a paladin and of you take that away then the paladin no longer exists, it becomes something else. This isn't about mechanics, this is about what defines a paladin.

The abilities of the paladin have changed through the years, but the thing that has always remained was they had to be lawful good.

Except this is false comparison. So does the Barbarian's Non-lawful-ness define him? Does the Druid's neutrality define him? No. The Barbarian is defined by his rage. When people thing barb, they thing raging hulking fighter, not chaotically aligned dude. For dude people think of the shapechanging, their nature themed spells, and their nature-y abilities.

The Paladin is defined not by his alignment, but by his opposition to his alignment. People don't think of the (anti)paladin as the LG guy. The (Anti)Paladin is defined as the (Dark)Shining Knight who smites (Good)evil with (un)holy power and is blessed by the (Profane)divine. That can easily be described in nearly any alignment so long as the paladin holds true to his god...

It's not a false comparison not matter how badly you think different. If you know anything about the...

I like how you immediately like to attack a person and act all -holier-than-thou...

Yes I know the history of the paladin. The history of the paladin is a blessed knight of charlamegne. In D&D they became the shining knight in fairy tails. The guy who is divinely protected and blessed by his very virtue of goodness. But what defines a paladin is his ability to smite and his immunity to "corruption" and his resistances to his classic enemies ( Fear immunity because he is partially stylized after the Saint who slew the dragon and dragons have fear/disease because the blessed knights of god were seen as protected from gods wrath/poison because their bodies are protected from such underhanded means/Negative energy based things because such things are seen as very obvioulsy corruption/ect..). So his DIVINITY and his strength vs his OPPOSITION is what defines him more than anything...

so yes, try again.

Silver Crusade

countchocula wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:

Because the Paladin is a cool class with nice mechanics which is overly restricted by alignment restrictions.

(Also, Anti-paladin code screws them out of ever being a reliable party member)

So basically you just want access to cool mechanics without the restrictions?

This is an RPG BTW.

I imagine he just wants to have people not tell him how to play his character.

It's not that simple. Paladins are built with a default assumption. This isn't a discussion about homebrew, you cam homebrew anything you like. Are you going to go to one of the devs amd tell them to remove each and every restriction because you feel they are trying to tell you how to play your character? If that's how someone feels then I would actually suggest a system like GURPS.

Part of what makes D&D/Pathfinder a unique game is it's default flavour.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

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The traditional cleric is just a healbot in plate. I'm sure a high number of groups will expect anyone who rolls a cleric to be healing every round, not charging in with their greatsword.

Now, if you divorce yourself from outdated expectations and consider the mechanics for a moment, then sure, you can play the Cleric as a divine warrior, since he can make up for the mid-tier BAB with self-buffs.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Let me boil down this thread to two posts by my aliases so that the mods can lock it since it's going nowhere:


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The LG alignment is the core of Paladin class! This is tradition! This is how Gary did things! This is how you underscore the fact that LG is the "goodest" alignment! That's how us, true roleplayers prefer! Of course, all those gamist anime robots with lazors fanboys of Monte Cook think otherwise...


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shallowsoul wrote:
K177Y C47 wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Scythia wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Being a pure hearted champion of good is the core of the Paladin. It would be like taking magic away from a Wizard, lawful good is what makes the Paladin what it is.

The problem is that many people disagree with this. To me, being a warrior that has divine abilities is what makes a Paladin what it is. Because a full BAB, divinely empowered, minor divine caster is what a Paladin is. It is reasonably easy to describe them as martial champions of a faith, but there are gods that are not lawful good. Some people enjoy having divinely empowered warriors that represent other gods than the lawful good ones.

To many people, lawful good is what prevents the Paladin from being a useful class.

Divorce yourself from the mechanics for a moment. A divine warrior and a champion of the faith is nothing but a cleric, always has been.

Being Lawful Good is what makes a paladin what it is. A paladin is not a champion of the faith, it is a champion of the most good and pure hearted as you can get, which BTW os the lawful good alignment. If you want an actual divine warrior who has partial divine magic then a fighter/cleric is what you want, but then again it's not the most optimal.

No... the cleric has always been the priest.. the pastor.. the minister of faith. The cleric has always been the divine equivalent to a wizard. The armor and BAB was given to them because their spells are not quite as potent in combat as a wizard and so the creators gave them a bone to help balance it out a bit vs arcanes.

Ehhhhh no.

The default cleric was a full plate wearing, shield toting, mace swinging warrior of the faith.

You could choose to wear no armour and carry no weapon but that wasn't the default.

No, again, the reason he was given the Armor proficiency and BAB is because the divine spell list is sub-par vs an Arcane. If the cleric spell list matched the wizard's spell list when it comes to options and combat capabilities, the cleric would probably be a 1/2 BAB with no armor... i.e. THE WIZARD...

What the iconic image of the cleric is, is the priest. The cleric IS the minister of faith. If you go into a church who is providing services? That is right, A CLERIC.

try agian.


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The alignment restriction of Paladin is an example of arbitrary limit on player options, of inviting Mister Cavern to be a douche, paying homage to outdated 'traditions' of the genre, curbing essential civil liberties and generally I'd love to travel back in time and make sure whoever came up with the idea was never born in the first place.

Silver Crusade

Chengar Qordath wrote:
Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:
I think a lot of the "Paladin Hate" comes from players who want to play a character how they want to (which is fine, not trying to present that as a negative), while a paladin has to be played as their code dictates.

Yeah. Most of the issues I see people having the Paladin boil down to just how tightly restricted the class' flavor is. A lot of players don't like being narrowly pigeonholed into a single specific character type, and no class is more prone to that than the Paladin. If a fighter or wizard is played in a unique or different way, everything's cool. If the Paladin is, you're risking a fall and/or table drama unless everyone agrees that your character is acting appropriately for a Paladin.

Any rules that seem arbitrary or overly restrictive will tend to get players annoyed. The Paladin gets the most attention of any class because his roleplaying restrictions are by far the tightest and most narrowly defined. At base, it's the same reason players don't like being told "Your dwarf must be bearded, drink heavily, and have a scottish accent" or "Your elf must be a snooty uptight tree-hugger." Players generally want to be free to define their characters as they wish, not have someone else's vision imposed on them. And no class is more prone to having other people's ideas of how it ought to be played imposed than the Paladin.

Then I would just give the advice to not play a paladin.

Notice how we don't get arguments about how so and so is angry because they can't play their lawful good barbarian? I will bet you any amount of money that if it somehow led to awesome mechanics we would hear about it.

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