My party just wants to KILL EVERYTHING


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This is my second PF party. The first party I was a part of the GM frowned on any and all skill choices that didn't maximize deadliness/combat skills.

My character doesn't like to kill and would rather knock out and tie up an evil character to turn over to the authorities than be judge/jury/executioner on the spot. However he will kill if he has to if it will save lives (his own or that of another).

I've been trying to get to "improved disarm" but that is next level.

I've found that my party just prefers to KILL ALL THE THINGS even when they don't need to and it bothers me.

My character was actually shoved up against a wall and screamed at by another player character because my character chose not to kill an enemy when he had the chance because he didn't have a non-lethal alternative to disable the enemy and stood down.

I dual wield and carry 2 saps now (one master crafted) but my main weapons are 2 scimitars.

It also bothers me when my teammates know I am trying to take an enemy alive and disarm them only to have another teammate then stab (the now defenseless enemy) and kill them.

I guess what I'm asking is, "am I normal?"

What are your thoughts? Does everyone just like to play "paper and pen Diablo 3" or do you choose skills that align with a character's life choices/beliefs instead?

Sovereign Court

You are definitely normal.
Combat is a huge part of Pathfinder, and killing monsters too. That DOES not mean it needs to be a slaughter-fest, especially if sentient opponents are involved.
You should definitely have a talk with your group, and let them know you are unconfortable. Maybe they don't see the moral part of the issue.


1) Different groups have different preferences. "Kill them all" is as valid a way of playing as "save them all". That said, it really does help if the party reaches an agreement on how to do things.

2) That said, deliberately interfering with what you're attempting to do is kind of a jerk move. It'd be one thing if they didn't know, but if they're specifically disrupting you? That's generally not conducive to the fun of the group. It would probably be best to ask why they want to kill everything - out of character - and see if you can reach an agreement they'll be willing to uphold.

3) Personally, I play characters with specific life choices. For example, one of my characters regularly attempts to get enemies to surrender - usually after a show of force - but has no problem with dropping people who attack them first.

4) Some people may tell you to "find another group". I will not, because I know that's not always possible. I will, however, invite you to check out the online games here on the Paizo forums. You may well be able to find a group that doesn't consist solely of murderhobos. XD You could also decide to make a character that fits in with your RL table better. Someone has to change in order for this to be solved, and that someone may need to be you, especially if you value your time with this group and want to play with them.


Stereofm wrote:
Maybe they don't see the moral part of the issue.

Oh our "characters" had an argument over it where I called the other player a "murderer" because that character has improved disarm and trip but still prefers to just kill things. They know how my character feels. And that other character said they couldn't understand why anyone wouldn't kill them.

That human has more in common with the drow than I do. ;)

The nat 20 I rolled when I shoved the other player's character back felt good though ;p


First off, just in case it happens to be everyone's motivation, talk to your GM about how the players are being awarded experience. Some people might actually reward solid roleplay and planning over pure battle, even going so far as to give a sizable bonus of XP on top of the experience for killing or successfully navigating through an encounter.

Secondly, everything done seems legit to me. As someone that finds it more fun to have in-character roleplay rather than out-of-character agreements, everyone seems on point to me. Of course, if you're personally troubled by this or just outright not having fun, then yes, it's time to either confront the GM, others, or propose a new character.

Chances are, if your GM is at all worth his/her salt, they'll throw in an encounter where your style of play is favored. As an example, they'll throw in an opponent with vital information or importance that other players would simply gloss over and loot once dead. However, your character might be rewarded for their efforts by someone who scries upon their last moments before death.

I sympathize very much with playing a character that refuses such heinous acts that other players usually find easy to commit. All I can say is, Find enjoyment in what you do. Also, the GM can begin to toy with the others' alignments given such choices to be straight-up unmerciful, maybe even evil. I hope your group doesn't have any paladins.


Sounds like your the odd man out as far as play style goes. So either adapt to the rest of the groups style or leave the group. It's not fair to them to have you shoving characters and ruining there fun with YOUR moral dilemma.


jeremiah dodson 812 wrote:
It's not fair to them to have you shoving characters and ruining there fun with YOUR moral dilemma.

To be fair, I was shoved up against a wall first. :)

And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

I'm a big proponent of playing a game the way I would in real life and not dismissing my terrible actions with "it's just a game so I can be as horrible as I want."


Bane Wraith wrote:
I hope your group doesn't have any paladins.

lol we actually DO and I've been wondering about that myself. So far our Paladin has been ok with watching someone, who I brought in alive btw, be killed after being interrogated (killed by an NPC benefactor of ours, who made my crap list after that) and doesn't seem to have a problem killing anyone they can justify as attacking them first (even though our paladin is a walking tank and most foes won't stand a chance).

Dark Archive

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I'm not a fan of how D&D has always given experience for defeating foes only. Well, 2nd edition gave minor amounts of experience for spells cast. Namely 10 xp per spell cast during the session. The thing is, you don't have to kill everything to defeat the encounter. Manage to talk your way past the evil duke's guards so they'll let you by without a fight? You just defeated the encounter, I'll record the xp. You managed to sneak past the ravenous beast of Aaaaarrrrrggggggh without being noticed? XP is recorded, well done. Did you completely bamboozle the BBEG with your witty repartee and jocular japes to the point he accidentally caught himself in his own Web spell? I'm rather amused, here's your xp (and maybe some bonus xp for such awesome roleplaying).


Kahel Stormbender wrote:
I'm not a fan of how D&D has always given experience for defeating foes only. Well, 2nd edition gave minor amounts of experience for spells cast. Namely 10 xp per spell cast during the session. The thing is, you don't have to kill everything to defeat the encounter. Manage to talk your way past the evil duke's guards so they'll let you by without a fight? You just defeated the encounter, I'll record the xp. You managed to sneak past the ravenous beast of Aaaaarrrrrggggggh without being noticed? XP is recorded, well done. Did you completely bamboozle the BBEG with your witty repartee and jocular japes to the point he accidentally caught himself in his own Web spell? I'm rather amused, here's your xp (and maybe some bonus xp for such awesome roleplaying).

I like your style! :) Maybe I can convince my GM to be more like that.

Dark Archive

What? If the party manages to fluster the BBEG so badly that he takes himself out of the fight, they deserve the win. And the bonus xp.


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Well, it somewhat depends on the situation. If you're deep in enemy territory fighting implacably evil foes that are bringing destruction to all in their wake, it's a bit different than if you're sent out to deal with a group of farmers-turned-bandits.

For example.

If you have no valid way to actually bring a defeated foe to justice, and non-lethal defeat merely means that you will have to fight them again, and again, and again, until they (or you) are dead, then not killing them is indeed putting your party in danger.

Without more information on your particular circumstance, it's hard to offer an opinion.

Dark Archive

At the same time, deliberately killing a helpless prisoner simply because one person was trying to take them captive is just plain mean spirited. From what has been described, any sensable GM would have definately told the paladins that they had fallen. Any monks would probably have become ex-monks too. Because it sounds like most of the party is playing chaotic neutral at best, chaotic evil at worst. Neither of which are alignments that let you keep progressing as a paladin or monk.


Oh, the roving bands of murder hobos...


thatOneRogue wrote:
And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

I blame Grand Theft Auto.

Srsly though, I think it is the new normal. I don't know what the old normal was but murder hobos on steroids and crack seems to be a common way to play RPGs these days.


Kahel Stormbender wrote:
At the same time, deliberately killing a helpless prisoner simply because one person was trying to take them captive is just plain mean spirited. From what has been described, any sensable GM would have definately told the paladins that they had fallen. Any monks would probably have become ex-monks too. Because it sounds like most of the party is playing chaotic neutral at best, chaotic evil at worst. Neither of which are alignments that let you keep progressing as a paladin or monk.

Again, it depends. If this is the 10th time the player has tried to take an imp prisoner, where the 9 previous times resulted in more party damage and or used resources to try and keep the imp confined and harmless during a trek through hell for no other reason than the player didn't want to kill it, I could definitely see the rest of the party growing pretty tired of catering to this particular player quirk.

On the other hand, if the player wanted to bring a petty thief to justice only to have him murdered out of hand, that's another story.

More information on the circumstance is needed.

Dark Archive

From the descriptions, it sounds like they are actively working to prevent the OP's character concept from being viable. Shoving the OP's character into a wall and screaming at them because they chose not to kill doesn't improve how the group sounds either. We don't know the full story behind that event, but it still sounds like the party is actively ruining the OP's character concept because it's "not killing"


Not all character concepts are compatible. I would argue that a strict 'does not kill' concept is not very well suited for most pathfinder campaigns. At the very least, it's something that is unusual enough that you should get buy in from the rest of the players BEFORE you decide to go down that road.

Dark Archive

The OP didn't have a strict "does not kill" policy, but rather a "tries to capture criminals to turn them over to the authorities" policy. Which is perfectly acceptable. My core monk in PFS prefers using non-lethal attacks. He wont stop others if they are going for the kill, but he prefers not to kill whenever possible.


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There is no "normal" or right or wrong when it comes to how to play an RPG. Clearly, you (OP) have one idea on how to play and your fellow party-members have another. What I find interesting is that your conflict is limited to in-game interactions, indicating that the people playing the game have no issues with each other. Sure, James Bond isn't a fan of Spectre, but Daniel Craig probably has no issue with Christoph Waltz (sp?), they might even be friends - I'll admit to not following who hangs with who in Hollywood.

I think the MurderHobo play style has always been a part of the game. Just look at how much of the rule books are devoted to combat. If the game were intended to be about social interaction, Diplomacy would be 200 pages rather than a few paragraphs. Also look at the wonderfully polar alignment system, where good is good and evil is evil. No chance that the red dragon who kidnapped the princess as a bargaining chip to end the constant flow of knights trying to kill it, happens to be a model parent and upstanding member of dragon society. No, no, it is an evil, selfish creature that must be killed on sight, or so the Bestiary (and 1st edition Monster Manual) tells us. It isn't that surprising that many players take a "nuke it from orbit" approach to the game.


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Well, the next time one of them has the back of your favorite head up against a wall, and you've just told them Jack Burton has their check in the mail, just look 'em in the eye and remind them:

"Concern for life is not weakness. Contempt for life is not strength."

It won't change anything. But it might confuse them for awhile, and that's good for a laugh or two.


thatOneRogue wrote:
jeremiah dodson 812 wrote:
It's not fair to them to have you shoving characters and ruining there fun with YOUR moral dilemma.

To be fair, I was shoved up against a wall first. :)

And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

I'm a big proponent of playing a game the way I would in real life and not dismissing my terrible actions with "it's just a game so I can be as horrible as I want."

We need more information really...

Who, or what, were the things you wanted to bring in alive? Humans? Monsters? Does your GM generally throw in non-standard aligned monsters?

So, for example let's use a Goblin. In the world of Golarion, Goblins are racially majority evil and eat humans. They hunt and kill and eat humans and feel no remorse.

Do they get taken alive by your character's logic? If so, then yes, some characters may see you as insane.

Is there laws where your character is? Are you even empowered to make arrests? Can you provide evidence, beyond your word, that these people committed a crime?

Are they demons or devils? They *can't* be good under Golarion standard rules, nor can undead.

Are they too powerful to jail? Some characters simply can't be brought in. A sorcerer who knows teleport, for example, can't be jailed in most normal jails. Anyone with a really high charisma can also always talk their way or intimidate their way out.

There is one HUGE problem with playing a fantasy game, "how you would in real life" and that is its not real life.

There are different threats, responses, and commonly accepted things that are part of the world paradigm.

People aren't educated, there is no internet, concepts that you had in real life don't exist in Golarion.

I once, for example, was in a game where a person's character tried to lecture my Paladin of Iomedae that everyone had a right to be what they wanted to be and that I should, and I quote, check my privilege.

Why? An evil Aasimar NPC was about to raise a demon in order to have her celestial half replaced with a demonic half. She was going to go from Aasimar to Teifling. My character was morally outraged over that act because they were an Aasimar and saw it as all kinds of blasphemy.

The crux of his argument was that everyone has the right to worship whoever they want and do whatever they want with their bodies.

My character calmly explained that such a belief is utterly insane. The other characters backed me up. He got ooc angry and started to berate the players for being small minded.

I had to ooc explain that, in a fantasy world, where evil gods do things, like kill people, worshipping them is not tolerated by most people. The same with removing a Celestial element and replacing it with infernal from a demon.

So this could be the case here. Are the things you're trying to save legitimately worth trying to save in the perception of a resident from the fantasy world rather than our world?

Dark Archive

True Make J. As far back as 2nd edition, and probably even further then that D&D has primarily been hack-n-slash. In large part this was because you flat out couldn't get xp otherwise. In the DMG for AD&D 2nd edition it lists the following: How much xp to award based on enemy hit dice/level (ranging from 7 for one hit die up to 3000 at 13 hit dice. Add another thousand xp for every hit die over 13. That's per creature, so an encounter with six 15 HD creatures gives 5,000 xp per creature in the encounter, or 30,000 xp. The effective HD of the creture is modified various abilities/equipment they might have.

Next you had the common individual rewards. These were as follows

1. Player has a clever idea: 50-100 xp

2. Player has an idea that save the party: 100-500 xp

3. Player role-plays his character well: 100-200 xp (can be higher if they sacrifice an in-game advantage to roleplay a character)

4. Defeating a creature in single combat: xp value of the creature

Then for class specific xp bonuses you had

Warriors
10 xp per hit die of creature defeated

Priests
100 xp for successful use of a granted power
50 xp per spell level for spells cast to overcome foes or problems

Wizards
50 xp per spell level for spells cast to overcome foes or problems
500 xp per spell level for researching a spell successfully

Rogues
200 xp for successfully using a special ability
2 xp per gold piece value of any treasure obtained
(bard only) 5 xp per hit die of creature defeated

Oh, wizards and priests also got bonus xp equal to the value of the item when they crafted or brewed potions. As you can see, 2nd edition put heavy emphasis on actually defeating enemies to get experience. Thus a political intrigue adventure or murder mystery adventure would provide less experience then a dungeon crawl.


thatOneRogue wrote:
And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

Because one of those things isn't real life?

Quote:
I'm a big proponent of playing a game the way I would in real life and not dismissing my terrible actions with "it's just a game so I can be as horrible as I want."

And if that's how you want to play that's fine, but it doesn't give you nearly the moral superiority that you seem to think it does in this situation.


Obviously, the adult thing to do would be to have a disscussion with your GM and group about their expectations vs your expectations and try to reach a compromise so that everyone is having fun.

The passive-aggressive, sinister, fun thing to do would be to jump full on board with your party's murderous ways, preferably starting with the NPC questgivers.


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Quark Blast wrote:
thatOneRogue wrote:
And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

I blame Grand Theft Auto.

Srsly though, I think it is the new normal. I don't know what the old normal was but murder hobos on steroids and crack seems to be a common way to play RPGs these days.

It may be "normal", unfortunately, but it certainly isn't at all new. I remember that a lot of 1st Edition AD&D (and presumably Basic/Expert/etc. D&D) players were like that back in the late 1970s through the late 1980s. The monster descriptions as well as the XP award system encouraged this. This was WAY before Grand Theft Auto. Grand Theft Auto is just a symptom, not the underlying disease.


the kill everything we get into combat with seems pretty standard across all the groups I've been with. you seem to be the odd one out which gives you a couple options 1 you can try and work things out with the group irl or you can find a group that coincides more with your play style i would highly recommend at least trying the second option as playing the game will be a lot more fun for you if your not clashing with everyone else and you wont feel as if your play style is quote on quote "wrong".


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Kahel Stormbender wrote:
I'm not a fan of how D&D has always given experience for defeating foes only.

Defeat =/= kill.

You can overcome an encounter through any number of non-lethal means, including deception or diplomacy.


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jeremiah dodson 812 wrote:
Sounds like your the odd man out as far as play style goes. So either adapt to the rest of the groups style or leave the group. It's not fair to them to have you shoving characters and ruining there fun with YOUR moral dilemma.

I agree with this.

PF is a pretty open-ended sandbox game, what you do with it depends a lot on what the GM and the players has in mind.

If the GM if fine with the PCs just killing everything (or indeed wants this), and that's what almost all the other players want, it's not really fair for you to try to impose an opposing style upon everyone.

A common grounds should be discussed, but if it can't be reached, adapt or leave seems the most appropriate path.

Also, the problem with non-lethal is that it is harder to achieve, and of very temporary nature. From my experience, many GMs expect you to kill the bad guys, and will profit of any opportunity for a recurring villain to troll you, or otherwise just make any mercy stab you in the back. "You should have known that if you let the bad guy go he'd go and plot his revenge" is something I've actually heard quite a few times. This kind of behavior conditions the PCs into being ruthless and into sparing none. Because not only is it harder to find a non-lethal solution (high check DCs, -4 to attack with non-lethal, etc.), but the outcome ends up sometimes dramatically worse (they come back at night and murder you in your sleep - I've seen it go this far).


Kahel Stormbender wrote:
I'm not a fan of how D&D has always given experience for defeating foes only. Well, 2nd edition gave minor amounts of experience for spells cast. Namely 10 xp per spell cast during the session. The thing is, you don't have to kill everything to defeat the encounter. Manage to talk your way past the evil duke's guards so they'll let you by without a fight? You just defeated the encounter, I'll record the xp. You managed to sneak past the ravenous beast of Aaaaarrrrrggggggh without being noticed? XP is recorded, well done. Did you completely bamboozle the BBEG with your witty repartee and jocular japes to the point he accidentally caught himself in his own Web spell? I'm rather amused, here's your xp (and maybe some bonus xp for such awesome roleplaying).

Getting sidetracked but I hate xp altogether. I'd rather run adventure paths and tell the players to level up their character when the AP says they should.


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If you watch a lot of fantasy movies such as conan or read fantasy novels there not many prisoners taken. Typically in groups nonlethal damage is not the order of the day unless the group is trying to keep someone alive to ask them questions. That is why doing nonlethal damage gives you a penalty to your attack, and you need a feat in order for spells to do nonlethal damage.

I have spared NPC's as a PC, but they were the low level mooks who I didnt think would come back to haunt me later. In such cases the group did not mind, but if the group was like "I dont trust him", then I would not have tried to stop them.

Liberty's Edge

Relevant link


XP is terrible, and I do remember that when we did use it, decades back, it did incite outright genocide, because most GMs for most of that period considered that xp was only awarded upon killing a foe, and that if the foe escaped, no xp was gained. At the end it got more lenient, with some xp rewards for non-combat achievements and quest bonuses, but it still relied heavily on killing enemies (avoiding a challenging encounter through diplomacy invariable resulted in less experience than killing them).

I haven't been in a group that uses it since a while, though. Mostly now it's been level ups per story progression, if not at a more or less fixed rate per session (once per two sessions or once per three sessions, typically).

As for non-lethal, I don't really get why it's so hard to do with bludgeoning weapons, without taking the feat bludgeoner. So few weapons have the nonlethal trait: whips, bolas, and sap, pretty much. I feel players would be more open to using non-lethal damage more frequently if they could avoid the -4 more easily.


For XP, i make it where confronting an obstacle and overcoming it will grant you xp. Whether it's combat, social discourse, or any crazy creative ways they can think of.

At the beginning of every game, I also let players know that they don't have to kill everything and that always evil races and monsters don't exist. Still, it can be difficult to show mercy because generally, a GM will use that mercy against players and have the creature betray them for more conflict. So if the players are going to show mercy, you have to make them not regret it.


Snowlilly wrote:
Kahel Stormbender wrote:
I'm not a fan of how D&D has always given experience for defeating foes only.

Defeat =/= kill.

You can overcome an encounter through any number of non-lethal means, including deception or diplomacy.

Read the posting in question further, and you will notice he actually agrees. And yes, alternative ways to overcome an encounter are great, not only to serve different character concepts, but also to offer the whole party interesting choices and new experiences. It's not always easy to provide such alternatives, but as a rule of thumb I try to make up one per encounter. Players might surprise me anyway, with their very own approaches...


Goblin_Priest wrote:

XP is terrible, and I do remember that when we did use it, decades back, it did incite outright genocide, because most GMs for most of that period considered that xp was only awarded upon killing a foe, and that if the foe escaped, no xp was gained. At the end it got more lenient, with some xp rewards for non-combat achievements and quest bonuses, but it still relied heavily on killing enemies (avoiding a challenging encounter through diplomacy invariable resulted in less experience than killing them).

I haven't been in a group that uses it since a while, though. Mostly now it's been level ups per story progression, if not at a more or less fixed rate per session (once per two sessions or once per three sessions, typically).

As for non-lethal, I don't really get why it's so hard to do with bludgeoning weapons, without taking the feat bludgeoner. So few weapons have the nonlethal trait: whips, bolas, and sap, pretty much. I feel players would be more open to using non-lethal damage more frequently if they could avoid the -4 more easily.

Weapons kill things. That's what they're designed to do.


The Sideromancer wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:

XP is terrible, and I do remember that when we did use it, decades back, it did incite outright genocide, because most GMs for most of that period considered that xp was only awarded upon killing a foe, and that if the foe escaped, no xp was gained. At the end it got more lenient, with some xp rewards for non-combat achievements and quest bonuses, but it still relied heavily on killing enemies (avoiding a challenging encounter through diplomacy invariable resulted in less experience than killing them).

I haven't been in a group that uses it since a while, though. Mostly now it's been level ups per story progression, if not at a more or less fixed rate per session (once per two sessions or once per three sessions, typically).

As for non-lethal, I don't really get why it's so hard to do with bludgeoning weapons, without taking the feat bludgeoner. So few weapons have the nonlethal trait: whips, bolas, and sap, pretty much. I feel players would be more open to using non-lethal damage more frequently if they could avoid the -4 more easily.

Weapons kill things. That's what they're designed to do.

Yeah bludgeoning weapons are arguably harder to use non lethally. They crush bones and skulls and do so much damage over a large area.


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Odraude wrote:


Yeah bludgeoning weapons are arguably harder to use non lethally. They crush bones and skulls and do so much damage over a large area.

That... makes no sense.

If someone offered you a million dollars to hit you really hard on the torso, and you had to pick between him using a sword and a staff, would you seriously argue that both hits are equally lethal? Man, may as well equip riot police with machetes instead of batons, same lethality right? And let's not talk about all those kids that die every day due to fighting with sticks.

Come on. Spreading the damage over so much of a larger area is precisely why bludgeoning weapons are less lethal. If you walk over a matt of nails, you will come through unharmed. If you walk on a single nail, it will pierce your foot. Why? Because multiplying the amount of nails doesn't multiply the damage, it divides it. The more surface area you add, the less penetration force each will have, until you have enough contact area that the force of your weight is no longer sufficient for the nails to pierce through.

Can bludgeoning weapons be lethal? Definately. But it will either take 1) an intent to kill (such as striking for vital spots with all of one's strength, reflected by opting for lethal damage or accidental critical hits) or 2) a lot more blows (reflected by nonlethal damage dealt beyond one's maximum hit points being lethal damage instead).

And no, not all "weapons are designed to kill". Many are designed to subdue. Many were designed for completely different purposes, usually agricultural.


Goblin_Priest wrote:
Odraude wrote:


Yeah bludgeoning weapons are arguably harder to use non lethally. They crush bones and skulls and do so much damage over a large area.

That... makes no sense.

If someone offered you a million dollars to hit you really hard on the torso, and you had to pick between him using a sword and a staff, would you seriously argue that both hits are equally lethal? Man, may as well equip riot police with machetes instead of batons, same lethality right? And let's not talk about all those kids that die every day due to fighting with sticks.

Come on. Spreading the damage over so much of a larger area is precisely why bludgeoning weapons are less lethal. If you walk over a matt of nails, you will come through unharmed. If you walk on a single nail, it will pierce your foot. Why? Because multiplying the amount of nails doesn't multiply the damage, it divides it. The more surface area you add, the less penetration force each will have, until you have enough contact area that the force of your weight is no longer sufficient for the nails to pierce through.

Can bludgeoning weapons be lethal? Definately. But it will either take 1) an intent to kill (such as striking for vital spots with all of one's strength, reflected by opting for lethal damage or accidental critical hits) or 2) a lot more blows (reflected by nonlethal damage dealt beyond one's maximum hit points being lethal damage instead).

And no, not all "weapons are designed to kill". Many are designed to subdue. Many were designed for completely different purposes, usually agricultural.

I wasn't really thinking staves, more clubs and maces. And I've seen the damage bludgeoning someone in the head with a baseball bat can do. It's not pretty.

Sovereign Court

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thatOneRogue wrote:
And I'm not understanding the "MY moral dilemma" part. I'm assuming in your real life that you would oppose senseless killing as well. So why is it ok in a game?

It depends upon the circumstances. Even in real life, I would have no problem killing someone if they were trying to kill me first.

Semi-unrelated note: You should take a look at the Blade of Mercy trait so that you can keep using your scimitars in combat with nonlethal. In addition, consider the Enforcer feat if you're already going nonlethal.


I was going to mention that if no one else did, well played Charon!

Dark Archive

I have the same trouble in PFS from time to time. I have 4 charcters who wont kill humanoids (barring monsters). One is a monk who belives in redemtion, the other is a lawyer/defense attorney (cleric of Asmodeus) who believes in the law. Two are paladins who wont look the other way while the "not evil folks" murder the helpless.

The angst I sometimes (not always) receive over stabalizing humans, elves, half elves. We're not talking evil outsiders, dangerous monsters, oozes, elementals, etc.

Sovereign Court

MeriDoc- wrote:


The angst I sometimes (not always) receive over stabalizing humans, elves, half elves. We're not talking evil outsiders, dangerous monsters, oozes, elementals, etc.

That bolded (by me) one is debatable. Some humanoids definitely qualify.


To the OP: Is this surprising?

The game rules actively reward murder-hobo behavior. Perhaps a clever GM can curb that behavior with relevant consequences unto the PCs* but still the fastest/surest route to leveling up is killing it and taking its treasure in virtually every published adventure/AP I've seen.

* and relevant consequences are harder to adjudicate than one might first think; think about it, if the PCs can be easily punished by the powers that be, then why didn't said powers take care of the problem the adventurers came in to solve?


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excellent... you might arrange a wedding between a princess with LARGE tracts of land and a reluctant prince who shoots an arrow with a message for help!

Liberty's Edge

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OP: You could really roleplay a "descent into madness" here if you wanted to.

Have your character be so upset about all of the murderhobo deaths that he becomes a necromancer. You always say, "No, I refuse to accept that you killed that guy. He will rise again!"

I recommend getting a level in occultist ASAP (vanilla is fine but necroccultist is preferable.) You can get "necromantic servant" at level one. If you want to get more levels, you can get more minions, because you have lvl/2 of them.

Then have the minion stare accusingly at the murderhobos. Don't have it get to a pvp fight or anything (that's bad news...) but just roleplay it to the hilt. Maybe you can have them say things like, "If only I were alive, I could return to my wife and kids. But alas, I am currently an undead servant to <insert your name here.>"

When some random monster kills a minion, you can raise it up again. Or you can say, "Alas, even my skills were not enough to keep Kenny moving on this Earth," and then sob quietly to yourself for a while.

FUN FACT: "Necromantic Servant" does not have the evil descriptor. So your virtue is safe.


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While I like playing intelligent, ethical characters... I also enjoy playing a game. And let me tell you, while the ethical quandary of "do we kill this person that is totally attacking us" is interesting at first, it quickly loses it's luster when it's brought up every time you encounter enemies.

My shorthand:
-If it's attacking us, it's *usually* ok to kill unless circumstances imply there's a misunderstanding of some sort.
-If it's of a race known to be evil, that is not a blanket ok to kill them, but combined with any other evidence of wrongdoing to confirm that yes the creature does fit into it's racial stereotype, then yes, it's fine to attack.
- Anyone currently engaged in evil acts or would put people in danger is ok to kill.

That should keep the moral quandaries to a minimum and ensure when they do happen they get the attention they deserve.


Odraude wrote:
I wasn't really thinking staves, more clubs and maces. And I've seen the damage bludgeoning someone in the head with a baseball bat can do. It's not pretty.

Sure, you can club someone to death by bashing his skull in. But you don't *have* to bash his skull in to wield a club or baseball bat effectively. And avoiding someone's head is not really such a difficult feat to achieve.

My point wasn't that bludgeoning weapons should *only* deal nonlethal damage, because it wasn't my intent to dispute that bludgeoning weapons can kill, but rather that it is much easier to go "soft" with bludgeoning weapons than with slashing or piercing weapons. While accidents can happen no matter what (critical hits), hitting someone without the intent to kill involves targeting the same body parts when done with a club as with a sword, but while the sword involves hitting with the flat side, the handle, or any other such unwieldy technique, doing so with a club doesn't.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Mike J wrote:
If the game were intended to be about social interaction, Diplomacy would be 200 pages rather than a few paragraphs.

Have you seen the social combat rules? It takes up a fair swath of Ultimate Intrigue, and are easily as complicated and in-depth as the physical combat rules in the Core Rulebook.


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Azothath wrote:
excellent... you might arrange a wedding between a princess with LARGE tracts of land and a reluctant prince who shoots an arrow with a message for help!

Saint-Lancelot, the patron of murderhobos.

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