Do the people of Golarion know their alignment?


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This is a real question - in a world where good, bad, lawful, chaotic, are tangible forces of the universe, does a person know if they are good or evil? Starting at level five, I pop up on detect evil/good, etc, so I am measurably somewhere on this scale.
Is the greedy, lying, CE merchant aware that he is going for an afterlife in the Abyss? Is he surprised when the Paladin asks him pointed question afte looking at him for a while?
In our current WotR campaign, where redemption and damnation are necessarily important topics, this is a really interesting question.
I have one of the NPC's drifting toward evil. It just takes away a lot of the roleplaying involved if the Paladin or Cleric can just cast a spell and prove to the guy "You went to far, you are in neutral territory. Better change your ways, or you will become evil." And the guy knows that's true!
So, rambling mode off, have you ever encountered this dilemma and how did you work with it?


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I don't think exact alignment is known, that's just a game abstraction. People would, however, be able to see if they've got more in common with Iomedae's values or Urgathoa's values, for instance, and extrapolate from there. No one will ever outright say they're evil or chaotic, as no one is the villain in their own story. But they might recognise they don't place much stock in "common" values.
Paladins might reproach people for not living up to society's standards (and maybe some Clerics), but other than that, I don't think anyone cares too much what alignment people are. They might disagree with other people's alignments if they clash with their own.
Other than that, I'm not sure if people even care about their own alignment, much less someone else's. Some evil people might have the presence of mind to realise they might be damning their soul, but those people usually prefer immediate gratification over long-term happiness. Either they don't care about the afterlife, or haven't thought about it long enough to change their ways.


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I suspect the various religions preach about it, but some will lie. Unless you have really high Knowledge skills backed up with Plane Shift to go do some confirming field research, I don't know that you can approach objective knowledge about your fate. Evil people might believe they will be rewarded with power over others.

Shadow Lodge

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Plausible Pseudonym wrote:
Evil people might believe they will be rewarded with power over others.

To be fair, they are. The evil planes reward the exact kinds of cutthroat methods to climb the planar ladder as an evil creature did during its life on the material plane. It's just competing with other evil creatures now.


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It's a problem with level inflation on the NPC Codex and the adventure paths. In theory, for a fantasy world to make sense, 95% to 98% of people should be BELOW level 5. Just normal regular people.

Have you seen how much xp you need to reach level five? You need to go through some very difficult problems to reach that level. It is basically impossible to reach that level without killing a lot of things.


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VM mercenario wrote:

It's a problem with level inflation on the NPC Codex and the adventure paths. In theory, for a fantasy world to make sense, 95% to 98% of people should be BELOW level 5. Just normal regular people.

Have you seen how much xp you need to reach level five? You need to go through some very difficult problems to reach that level. It is basically impossible to reach that level without killing a lot of things.

Nah, you have to "defeat" not kill an opponent, and APs always give you full xp for talking or sometimes even stealthing or decoying your way past challenges. Every time I got drunk at a party in college, had three belligerent guys threaten to beat me up, and then defused the situation with a joke (something that happened more than once) I would have earned xp for defeating them in combat in that encounter if life worked via Pathfinder rules. There are also story awards for accomplishing plot points, an Expert merchant would get xp for hitting certain profit thresholds.


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Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Most people don't know anyting about alignment in world, but some people can figure things like that out.

My PC, for example, is a lawful good spellcaster from Cheliax with high knowledge skills. It is rather easy for her to figure out that she is most likely lawful good (because she is willing to summon archons but not devils) and that her queen is most likely lawful evil (for the opposite reason). She cannot totally rule out the possibility that either of them has drifted into lawful neutral territory, of course, but the general tendencies are obvious.


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I feel like people on Golarion (or whatever other world you're playing Pathfinder on) should not really have a concept that "alignment" exists. Just because some magical effect that 98% of people don't understand pings differently on different people doesn't mean that the average person puts any stock in it.

Though they probably do hear from whatever Church they follow they will be rewarded/punished appropriately based on their actions, any given individual should be able to rationalize that away if they choose to do so. Very few people should have reliable access to the outer planes, and what random individuals think they know about them should probably be colored by hearsay and, well, the fact that fiends are happy to lie.


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If you're below level 5 you are likely to have a hard time pinning down your alignment, you'd be no better or worse than real life people at determining whether you're living a good life.

Level 5 and above it becomes unavoidable. You have an aura detectable by even 1st level spellcasters, you have plenty of money to spend on their services. How could you miss it?


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VM mercenario wrote:
It's a problem with level inflation on the NPC Codex and the adventure paths. In theory, for a fantasy world to make sense, 95% to 98% of people should be BELOW level 5. Just normal regular people.

In my Rise of the Runelords game 97.5% of the population are level 4 or below, the people the PCs compete against are level appropriate challenges.

In real life there are ~6 billion humans and ~450 of them are professional basketball players in the NBA. That's .0000075% of the population. 100% of the people professional ball players compete against are NBA players though because they aren't hitting opponents at random, the .0000075% are being funneled onto teams and into tournaments.

One in a million people might be 15th level, but if the PCs are trying to overthrow a kingdom with 10 million people in it, the 15th level people who support the government are going to come out of the woodwork and oppose them.

Shadow Lodge

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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:

If you're below level 5 you are likely to have a hard time pinning down your alignment, you'd be no better or worse than real life people at determining whether you're living a good life.

Level 5 and above it becomes unavoidable. You have an aura detectable by even 1st level spellcasters, you have plenty of money to spend on their services. How could you miss it?

First, people aren't going to automatically know when they hit level 5, and thus won't know exactly when they'd start getting a result from Detect Alignment spells. So I think there would be plenty of level 5-6 people who just wouldn't think to get "tested."

The second half of the question is whether there is consensus about what alignment actually means. See this article for a discussion of why someone might not be responsive to a paladin telling them that they have an evil aura and need to repent.


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The educated will know which alignments correspond to which planes. It's all very well to call your lawful evil "organized realism" or whatnot, but when you're the same alignment as Pinhead from Hellraiser you should rethink your life.

How rare is that sort of knowledge? If you're playing Epic 6 then maybe it is pretty rare, but in Golarion every major city is going to be able to scrounge up 9th level clerics without any trouble and keeping the secret from *them* and (more importantly) anyone inclined to believe them is going to be impossible.


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http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/e/early-judgment/ <Possibly more-useful and convincing than the detect-alignment spells.

I think it's also worth noting that which deity you worship can have an even greater effect on a person's afterlife than their alignment.

For example: If you worship Torag and commit suicide, regardless of how lawful or good you were, you're going to Avernus. (Unless this was retconned?)

Shelyn probably brings in a fair number of neutral souls to herself, and even a few evil ones...


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Agreed with above (Linea), and the teachings of religions will de-emphasize alignment as such and emphasize their own tenets.
Those will be vastly more "real" and relevant for low-HD majority than abstract technical measurement of Alignment.
Beyond varying views on cosmology, we see wide variety of views of "afterlife" with invocation of ancestor spirits
being major perspective which really is agnostic of "alignment based" reincarnation, and much more relevant to daily lives.

I do see Detect Alignment would be objective technical measurement, but don't see why people would care about it,
if NG/N character comes into conflict with NE worshipper of same religion as theirs, why they wouldn't prioritize religion/deity.
(while Cleics have 1-step rule, there is none for lay followers, and 'alignment wings' of Church can diverge in doctrine)

In modern world we can assess DNA which is statistically more associated with certain negative behaviors.
Do most people think that hinging judgements of people based on that is legit approach to life? No. So why Alignment?

I tend to view it as one more overlapping paradigm amongst others, similar to Al-Qadim's schools of Clerics.
That system hinged on Law/Neutral/Chaos axis, but likewise overlapped with other factors (Deity/Ethnicity/Good/Evil/etc).
So while it doesn't have ZERO importance, there are other factors, and the plurality of those combined will rule.
Anybody trying to push "Alignment fundamentalism" will probably tend to upset too many people.
OTOH, when it does line up with other issues (religion, ethnicity, etc), they can strengthen each other.


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I was not thinking about the Paladin going lawful stupid, it's really more about the good old descent into evil arc.
So, the neutral merchant has started to unknowingly consort with devils, but is still a good old follower of Abadar. He is pushed in the direction of the Hellknights as role models as they are doing more against the demons in his neck of the woods than any other organisation. And after all, the Order of the Godclaw worhsips Abadar as well, so no problem there.
Long story short, slippery slope and all that, he will start offing people first for the greater good, than because of convenience and finally out of habit. Better to burn a thousand innocents than to miss one heretic, all that. Clearly went over to the evil side.
Without even needing to witness one of these acts, Paladin can step up to him and tell him, "Boy, you got evil since last we met. Better rethink your ways." And the Merchant would have no reason not to believe the Paladin - he knows about Paladin Codes and all that. This feels off, somehow.
And this is kind of why I am asking - of course the merchant guy could afford Undetectable Alignment - but why would he? He still thinks he's lawful neutral, doesn't he?


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Quentin Coldwater wrote:

I don't think exact alignment is known, that's just a game abstraction. People would, however, be able to see if they've got more in common with Iomedae's values or Urgathoa's values, for instance, and extrapolate from there. No one will ever outright say they're evil or chaotic, as no one is the villain in their own story. But they might recognise they don't place much stock in "common" values.

Paladins might reproach people for not living up to society's standards (and maybe some Clerics), but other than that, I don't think anyone cares too much what alignment people are. They might disagree with other people's alignments if they clash with their own.
Other than that, I'm not sure if people even care about their own alignment, much less someone else's. Some evil people might have the presence of mind to realise they might be damning their soul, but those people usually prefer immediate gratification over long-term happiness. Either they don't care about the afterlife, or haven't thought about it long enough to change their ways.

Well, there are direct tests to check alignment though- entire planes are defined by being infused with an alignment's energies. So alignment is real.

But for the common man? No- it means almost nothing in practical terms. You are right there. Most people are too low level for common detect spells, and even if they were the right level, you would likely have to cast 4 2nd level spells (most people are neutral- you can only define that in the negative, so it takes all 4 tries). If you are buying the spells, that is 240 gp (2nd level spell, caster level 3, x10 gp, x4 times)! That would be a few years worth of salary for most commoners. Who would spend that much on what amounts to a glorified personality test?

So most people just go with a god that 'sounds' good, and says they are either 'normal' or 'good, I guess?'. Really, alignment is mostly a thing for clerics to argue about (since they have a hard limit based on it- can't cast opposite alignment spells, so easy to check).

And people might worship a god because it sounds cool or it is the norm of their community, rather than having opinions that actually match up to the god's teachings. I mean.... just look at real life religion...


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An inquisitor can use all 4 Detect Alignment spells at will. An Inquisitor could pinpoint the alignment of anybody not actively hiding their auras in about 72 Seconds.


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technarken wrote:
An inquisitor can use all 4 Detect Alignment spells at will. An Inquisitor could pinpoint the alignment of anybody not actively hiding their auras in about 72 Seconds.

Except a huge% of the population is under 5hd and wont show up to alignment detection at all


Most people probably don't. Most are probably pretty ambivalent to it.

But Hellknights know (as do many other characters of classes or organizations with strict alignment restrictions.)

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Some know that certain spells register an aura purported to be aligned with cosmic forces. How much they believe those spells varies.

Grand Lodge

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I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

Silver Crusade

Linea Lirondottir wrote:
For example: If you worship Torag and commit suicide, regardless of how lawful or good you were, you're going to Avernus. (Unless this was retconned?)

Erastil, not Torag.


technarken wrote:
An inquisitor can use all 4 Detect Alignment spells at will. An Inquisitor could pinpoint the alignment of anybody not actively hiding their auras in about 72 Seconds.

yeah, that is nice for the church's resources. But inquisitors are a rather specialized job that are used for specific purposes (like investigations).

Clerics are the workhorse spell casters of most religions. It is much easier to imagine a small village having a 3rd level cleric than it is to imagine they have an inquisitor on call. Inquisitors seem like they are typically stationed at the headquarters of the church for fast dispatch, or stationed in particularly troubled areas.

Also.... what incentive does the church have for giving out free spell castings? Again- that is 240 gp the church could have earned (the only thing I see churches giving out for cost would be holy water... and that has the obvious advantage of killing enemies of humanity like demons). Maybe you could have a holy church try to make a list of evil people (...or an asmodean church make a list of chaotic people).... but generally, it is too mundane (again- most are neutral, so it would be 4 castings just to find out that the person is probably normal).

Or I could see it as a background check thing for some organizations. As in- the kingdom wants to make sure its new officers aren't CE and potentially part of a demon cult. In that case, they might have a contract with the church of abadar to do routine alignment checks using inquisitors... But that is about the limit of what I could imagine as being routine.

For the common man in his everyday life.... he just assumes he is 'good' or 'normal'. Everything else is for people in power and investigations when crimes, particularly super naturally related crimes, occur.


In a very old, pre-PF publication I read that asking someone their alignment was considered an extremely personal question. I do not bring this up to say that people know their alignment in PF, but rather I bring it up to say that you can run your game however you like. I think that alignment, class, and other labels are abstractions in nearly all games these days (they are in mine), but they don't have to be.


Personally, I contextualize the information from "Detect Alignment" type effects as a character scanning the aura of a person and the information the character derives from that is abstracted to the *player* as "Neutral Good" or whatever. It's not actually a detector that lights up with one of nine different colors; the actual game world effect is more subtle than that.


Some of them, certainly, but the exact detail on the character sheet or GM blurb or what have you would not be known to people who had not had some means of magically testing it.

Knowing whether one is Good, Neutral, or Evil is readily accomplished just by looking at a certain form of either fabric or paint, so that axis is much more testable than the other one.


Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

What abstract? In game these are concrete concepts. A high enough priest can literally call down angels and ask "What religions are right and allow you to go to Heaven?"

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Of course should be, that would make the life of Paladins of Ragathiel so much easier.

PoR: ARE YOU EVIL?
NPC: Errr ... no? *rolls Bluff poorly*
PoR: *rolls Sense Motive well* KILL MAIM BURN KILL MAIM BURN! *applies +3 holy vivcious chainaxe to NPCs face* DEATH TO ALL EVIL! *wipes blood and guts away* WHO'S NEXT? YOU! ARE YOU EVIL?


It shouldn't be an abstraction if Detect Alignment spells are a real game mechanic for determining a character's moral compass. I know Pathfinder shouldn't be based on realism, but it doesn't make sense if a character or a NPC is tagged as Chaotic Evil but is considered "Chaotic Good," for example. If he considers himself good, I think he should reflect towards that general alignment.


VM mercenario wrote:
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

What abstract? In game these are concrete concepts. A high enough priest can literally call down angels and ask "What religions are right and allow you to go to Heaven?"

Kind of hope said high priest would look sagely on as the engel says:

"Well its actually a complicated matter...You see a Goddess or God can have a divine realm on a plane that doesn't match their Alignment.
As the soul of one of the faithful goes to their God or Goddess, that means that some amount souls of one Alignment will be going to a plane that doesn't match that Alignment.
And yes I know it can seem confusing that Calistria worshipping anti-paladins end up in Elysium, but them's the apples priesty-boy/girl..."

the angel would then look a bit smug, then he would drop the act and say:
"Look, if you want some advice, be sure to worship a God or Goddess, especially one of those with a divine realm in one of the "heavens" as that would pretty much guarantee you going to heaven when you pass on"


VigorBird wrote:
It shouldn't be an abstraction if Detect Alignment spells are a real game mechanic for determining a character's moral compass.

A 5' square grid is also a real game mechanic for determining how everything moves around, but we understand this is an abstraction to enhance the tactical aspect of playing the game, rather than something people in the diagesis think about ever.


Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".

Grand Lodge

Corathonv2 wrote:
There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".

Not to a zealous believer.


Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:
Corathonv2 wrote:
There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".
Not to a zealous believer.

and not to an nonbeliever after the inquisitors finish their job....


Corathonv2 wrote:
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".

In a world with objective morality? Not really.


Ventnor wrote:
Corathonv2 wrote:
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".
In a world with objective morzality? Not really.

There's plenty of neutral things that can be the wrong response to a situation.


Coidzor wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
Corathonv2 wrote:
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

There's a big difference between "incorrect" and "evil".
In a world with objective morzality? Not really.
There's plenty of neutral things that can be the wrong response to a situation.

"This startin' to sound like Asmodeus talk. You ain't a Chelaxian, are ya boy? I ain't standin' by no devil worshipers in these parts."


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Ventnor wrote:
In a world with objective morality? Not really.

Just because "evil" is a quantifiable elemental force doesn't mean that all moral questions are resolved, though. It's entirely possible that the devils, as unpleasant as they are, are correct and the elemental forces associated with "good" are hopelessly naïve.

Which is to say there's a fundamental disconnect between the elemental forces termed good/evil/law/chaos and the ordinary ethical reasoning sense of "which things are most desirable/generate the best outcomes."


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
VigorBird wrote:
It shouldn't be an abstraction if Detect Alignment spells are a real game mechanic for determining a character's moral compass.
A 5' square grid is also a real game mechanic for determining how everything moves around, but we understand this is an abstraction to enhance the tactical aspect of playing the game, rather than something people in the diagesis think about ever.

Well, I firmly believe 5' grids are the basis for Pathfinder physics. A human cannot stand in the middle of a traditionally-aligned ten foot by ten foot room; they will be drawn by inexorable forces to one of the corners.

Liberty's Edge

Matthew Downie wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
VigorBird wrote:
It shouldn't be an abstraction if Detect Alignment spells are a real game mechanic for determining a character's moral compass.
A 5' square grid is also a real game mechanic for determining how everything moves around, but we understand this is an abstraction to enhance the tactical aspect of playing the game, rather than something people in the diagesis think about ever.
Well, I firmly believe 5' grids are the basis for Pathfinder physics. A human cannot stand in the middle of a traditionally-aligned ten foot by ten foot room; they will be drawn by inexorable forces to one of the corners.

Or go into a 15 x 15 room in order to find his center.


Matthew Downie wrote:
Well, I firmly believe 5' grids are the basis for Pathfinder physics. A human cannot stand in the middle of a traditionally-aligned ten foot by ten foot room; they will be drawn by inexorable forces to one of the corners.

I believe a human on Golarion can stand 6 feet from a wall and take a couple steps so they are now 2 feet from a wall. A world in which this is not possible would be bizarre.

Like ballroom dancing would be incredibly difficult if you can only move in 5' increments.


Alignment exists and is known in the world. I would expect that many organizations with an ethical bent would test their people. Common folks wouldn't know and most wouldn't care.

While detect spells only work on level 5, aligned weapons affect anybody despite their aura, and despite spells that mask it. Prick somebody with the holy axiomatic needle and if their arm turns black then that's a sign.

I'm imagining a box with four needles. You press it to their skin and see how big each wound is. Sort of like an allergy scratch test.


Philo Pharynx wrote:

Alignment exists and is known in the world. I would expect that many organizations with an ethical bent would test their people. Common folks wouldn't know and most wouldn't care.

While detect spells only work on level 5, aligned weapons affect anybody despite their aura, and despite spells that mask it. Prick somebody with the holy axiomatic needle and if their arm turns black then that's a sign.

I'm imagining a box with four needles. You press it to their skin and see how big each wound is. Sort of like an allergy scratch test.

The extra damage would kill a lot of low level NPCs.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

Most Muslims don't see Christians as evil and vice versa. Christians and Muslims follow the same God and Islam has the same line of prophets as Christianity. The biggest divergence is that Muslims disagree with the idea of a Holy Trinity--they view God as indivisible, so Jesus in Muslim tradition cannot be God on Earth.

Back on topic, alignment is real, although most common people are only vaguely aware of it and most religions are probably focused on their tenants over hard alignment.

Grand Lodge

Gorbacz wrote:

Of course should be, that would make the life of Paladins of Ragathiel so much easier.

PoR: ARE YOU EVIL?
NPC: Errr ... no? *rolls Bluff poorly*
PoR: *rolls Sense Motive well* KILL MAIM BURN KILL MAIM BURN! *applies +3 holy vivcious chainaxe to NPCs face* DEATH TO ALL EVIL! *wipes blood and guts away* WHO'S NEXT? YOU! ARE YOU EVIL?

Ah, Paladins of Ragathiel. The simplest answer to the baby goblins question.


Matthew Downie wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
VigorBird wrote:
It shouldn't be an abstraction if Detect Alignment spells are a real game mechanic for determining a character's moral compass.
A 5' square grid is also a real game mechanic for determining how everything moves around, but we understand this is an abstraction to enhance the tactical aspect of playing the game, rather than something people in the diagesis think about ever.
Well, I firmly believe 5' grids are the basis for Pathfinder physics. A human cannot stand in the middle of a traditionally-aligned ten foot by ten foot room; they will be drawn by inexorable forces to one of the corners.

^-^

Of course that human cannot stand there unaided. The Rule tells us that the intersections are the rightful domain of the Large and Gargantuan, and only those. All who believe otherwise are heretics and deceivers.

EDIT ADD
You can make a decent argument that for most non-divine touched Humanoids, Allignment does not exist until they reach the mystical power threshold, Level 5.


To the OP - the answer is "yes but".

Yes, but it depends on the PC/NPCs wisdom score.

You can be smart and fool yourself (into, for example, thinking you're quite good when in fact you're seriously not), but you cannot be wise and fall into the same trap.

Also, this from Weirdo's link

Archon wrote:
Because it's a game produced by writers from the Judeo-Christian tradition, it's not altogether surprising that Dungeons & Dragons {and it's clones, like Pathfinder} has assigned its metaphysical Good and Evil to approximately correlate with Judeo-Christian "good" and "evil" - indeed, the game's alignments can probably best be understood as being written from a Lawful Good perspective.

I don't think I agree with everything but that part rings true.


Stephan Taylor wrote:
Kemuri Kunoichi wrote:

I always think back to a quote I heard years ago when I think about alignment. "The villain is always the hero of their own story"

Alignment is game mechanic designed to quantify an abstract concept, based on societal values...in a real world example...take 2 of the largest religions on Earth...Christianity and Islam...if you ask anyone in either religion if they are 'good' the answer will most likely be yes...and if you ask them if the other is evil (or at least wrong)...guess what the answer to that is likely to be.

Most Muslims don't see Christians as evil and vice versa. Christians and Muslims follow the same God and Islam has the same line of prophets as Christianity. The biggest divergence is that Muslims disagree with the idea of a Holy Trinity--they view God as indivisible, so Jesus in Muslim tradition cannot be God on Earth.

I think the biggest difference is that Christians (and everyone else) simply cannot see the prophet of Islam as legit. All else being equal, that is an unforgivable offense in all branches of Sharia Law. The declaration, written in plain text right there in the recitation itself, of the unequaled status of the prophet is unequivocal. It's not even a concept that "doesn't translate well".

All those other concepts that religious types bicker (and worse) over? They are equally in dispute within their own respective faith traditions/communities.


ThePuppyTurtle wrote:
Linea Lirondottir wrote:
For example: If you worship Torag and commit suicide, regardless of how lawful or good you were, you're going to Avernus. (Unless this was retconned?)
Erastil, not Torag.

I'm fairly sure that both of them have, or have had, that behaviour ascribed to them in the books, and I am almost certain that I have specifically read that Torag condemns the souls of those who commit suicide to Avernus in one of the adventure path book's articles.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
In a world with objective morality? Not really.

Just because "evil" is a quantifiable elemental force doesn't mean that all moral questions are resolved, though. It's entirely possible that the devils, as unpleasant as they are, are correct and the elemental forces associated with "good" are hopelessly naïve.

Which is to say there's a fundamental disconnect between the elemental forces termed good/evil/law/chaos and the ordinary ethical reasoning sense of "which things are most desirable/generate the best outcomes."

Well, that second part is true in the real world, too. It might produce a good outcome for me to hack people's bank accounts and steal all their money (assuming I could get away with it), but that doesn't make it an ethically good thing to do. A lot of fiction/fables does focus on the idea that being good is harder than being evil, after all.

I'd imagine that those following evil gods in Golarion know their actions aren't Good by moral standards; they just view "good" as a foolish concept clung to by those too weak to know any better or have actual power. So they recognize Good as a concept, but they're scornful of it.

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