So, let's talk about the new Drow...


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HWalsh wrote:
Drow were, initially, a unique group of Elves that ONLY existed on Faerun. They technically shouldn't even be on Golarion. They were meant to exclusively be the servants of Lolth.

Sorry, but no.

Drow first appeared in the 1979 1st Ed AD&D G3 Hall of the Fire Giant King tournament module set in Greyhawk. Several years before the Forgotten Realms setting was even published.

The continuation of the G1-3 Against the Giants series (D1-2 Descent into the Depths of the Earth, D3 Vault of the Drow, and Q1 Queen of the Demonweb Pits) is one of the primary sources of drow "lore." Much of it was ported over to Faerun, with only minor changes.

They also appeared in A1-4 Scourge of the Slavelords, T1-4 The Temple of Elemental Evil, the Fiend Folio, and as a PC race in Unearthed Arcana; again, before the publication of the Forgotten Realms setting.


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MageHunter wrote:

I wasn't trying to say that patriarchies are more evil, it's just that it makes played more uncomfortable. A large fan base wouldn't like that, so paizo has to be careful.

Whereas for Drow, paizo has taken great steps to represent women in all aspects. Good, evil, and neutral. It's why there are a lot of female villains, and they took specific measures in Iron fang to just make female scoundrel.

So patriarchy is as bad as a matriarchy, it's just that one is a bit riskier to include in a game. To make money companies have to be careful of story elements like this.

Honestly, I'm cynical enough to say that the real problem with an oppressive patriarchy in the game is not that it makes players uncomfortable, per se. . . but that for an unfortunate number of players, it'd make them entirely *too* comfortable. Which is to say, the problem is that there's a not-insignificant minority of players who'd *not* view it as an evil horrible society. Instead, they'd get their Starfinder of Gor on, unironically.


Metaphysician wrote:
MageHunter wrote:

I wasn't trying to say that patriarchies are more evil, it's just that it makes played more uncomfortable. A large fan base wouldn't like that, so paizo has to be careful.

Whereas for Drow, paizo has taken great steps to represent women in all aspects. Good, evil, and neutral. It's why there are a lot of female villains, and they took specific measures in Iron fang to just make female scoundrel.

So patriarchy is as bad as a matriarchy, it's just that one is a bit riskier to include in a game. To make money companies have to be careful of story elements like this.

Honestly, I'm cynical enough to say that the real problem with an oppressive patriarchy in the game is not that it makes players uncomfortable, per se. . . but that for an unfortunate number of players, it'd make them entirely *too* comfortable. Which is to say, the problem is that there's a not-insignificant minority of players who'd *not* view it as an evil horrible society. Instead, they'd get their Starfinder of Gor on, unironically.

Doubt that. Paizo's been fine with proper oppressive patriarchies in the past (orcs and Koshticae's cult [butchered spelling ho]) in Pathfinder and I haven't exactly seen people coming out of the woodwork to defend those cultures. What people DID get their jimmies rustled by was when LG Erastil preferred women be homemakers while men did the hunting/farming etc.


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Envall wrote:

Instead of being slaves, the males are now WAGE SLAVES.

Brave new world.

An entire society where every one, male and female, is trying to be Gordon Gecko and Patrick Bateman rolled-into-one. Eek.

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Spacecaptain Pillbug Lebowski wrote:
Envall wrote:

Instead of being slaves, the males are now WAGE SLAVES.

Brave new world.
An entire society where every one, male and female, is trying to be Gordon Gecko and Patrick Bateman rolled-into-one. Eek.

That...is a terrifyingly good metaphor.


Seems I've got my work cut out for me...


About matriarchies: All matriarchalic cultures on Earth are not gender inverted patriarchies in which women have all the power and men are just better slaves. This kind of matriarchy did never exist. Most of the so called matriarchies were in fact only matrilinear societies.


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Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:

About matriarchies: All matriarchalic cultures on Earth are not gender inverted patriarchies in which women have all the power and men are just better slaves. This kind of matriarchy did never exist. Most of the so called matriarchies were in fact only matrilinear societies.

Absolutely true. But we're talking about fantasy and science fiction, so we're free to speculate.

The topic at hand, the classic Drow society is hardly "only matrilinear". It pretty much is a simple gender inversion (with a few tweaks).


thejeff wrote:
Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:

About matriarchies: All matriarchalic cultures on Earth are not gender inverted patriarchies in which women have all the power and men are just better slaves. This kind of matriarchy did never exist. Most of the so called matriarchies were in fact only matrilinear societies.

Absolutely true. But we're talking about fantasy and science fiction, so we're free to speculate.

The topic at hand, the classic Drow society is hardly "only matrilinear". It pretty much is a simple gender inversion (with a few tweaks).

And that makes them so fascinating (in addition of being evil, that also is a reason for the Drow being so fascinating (the so-called "Fascination of Evil")).

For some reason we all are fascinated by matriarchalic or even misandristic cultures (like the Amazons) and not so much by patriarchalic and misogynistic cultures.


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Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:

About matriarchies: All matriarchalic cultures on Earth are not gender inverted patriarchies in which women have all the power and men are just better slaves. This kind of matriarchy did never exist. Most of the so called matriarchies were in fact only matrilinear societies.

Absolutely true. But we're talking about fantasy and science fiction, so we're free to speculate.

The topic at hand, the classic Drow society is hardly "only matrilinear". It pretty much is a simple gender inversion (with a few tweaks).

And that makes them so fascinating (in addition of being evil, that also is a reason for the Drow being so fascinating (the so-called "Fascination of Evil")).

For some reason we all are fascinated by matriarchalic or even misandristic cultures (like the Amazons) and not so much by patriarchalic and misogynistic cultures.

Uhm... I'm just as interested in matriarchial and misandric cultures as I am with patriarchic and misogynistic cultures. I find both absurd ideas that would be nearly impossible to keep alive for the length they have been in place in Fantasy periods.


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HWalsh wrote:
Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:

About matriarchies: All matriarchalic cultures on Earth are not gender inverted patriarchies in which women have all the power and men are just better slaves. This kind of matriarchy did never exist. Most of the so called matriarchies were in fact only matrilinear societies.

Absolutely true. But we're talking about fantasy and science fiction, so we're free to speculate.

The topic at hand, the classic Drow society is hardly "only matrilinear". It pretty much is a simple gender inversion (with a few tweaks).

And that makes them so fascinating (in addition of being evil, that also is a reason for the Drow being so fascinating (the so-called "Fascination of Evil")).

For some reason we all are fascinated by matriarchalic or even misandristic cultures (like the Amazons) and not so much by patriarchalic and misogynistic cultures.

Uhm... I'm just as interested in matriarchial and misandric cultures as I am with patriarchic and misogynistic cultures. I find both absurd ideas that would be nearly impossible to keep alive for the length they have been in place in Fantasy periods.

Is there something in particular about Fantasy that you think makes it unlikely?

Or are you pushing the definitions to such extremes that most of human history doesn't qualify as patriarchic or misogynistic?

Grand Lodge

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While all of these concepts, (matriarchal, patriarchal and the like) are all a big thing to mine ideas, I think we do a disservice trying to compare it to much to real world concepts. Real world politics run the risk of making people uncomfortable, and I think that the thread has some very interesting ideas, I just don’t want to see it locked.


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Dragonchess Player wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
Drow were, initially, a unique group of Elves that ONLY existed on Faerun. They technically shouldn't even be on Golarion. They were meant to exclusively be the servants of Lolth.

Sorry, but no.

Drow first appeared in the 1979 1st Ed AD&D G3 Hall of the Fire Giant King tournament module set in Greyhawk. Several years before the Forgotten Realms setting was even published.

The continuation of the G1-3 Against the Giants series (D1-2 Descent into the Depths of the Earth, D3 Vault of the Drow, and Q1 Queen of the Demonweb Pits) is one of the primary sources of drow "lore." Much of it was ported over to Faerun, with only minor changes.

They also appeared in A1-4 Scourge of the Slavelords, T1-4 The Temple of Elemental Evil, the Fiend Folio, and as a PC race in Unearthed Arcana; again, before the publication of the Forgotten Realms setting.

I recall an article mentioning that Ed Greenwood's original Faerun had own undeground elves that were evil and decadent, which, when the setting was published were replaced with pre-existing D&D drow, while the original concept was later reused as Fey'ri - demon-blooded elven tieflings.


Because of there life span many were around when the changes happened so there is little reason for radical change. And if they still worship demons a change in the drow power struggle so radical could loose them a lot of controll. I think to keep the flavor they should stay the same just throw in the inevitable trouble makers and you can play any kind of drow you want. They can be a great economic necessary evil and great opponents for PC's.


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thejeff wrote:

Is there something in particular about Fantasy that you think makes it unlikely?

Or are you pushing the definitions to such extremes that most of human history doesn't qualify as patriarchic or misogynistic?

Not about typical fantasy - science fantasy? Yes.

Cultures that had a single sex "rulers" still had justifications. Those might have been BS, but they had them. The more technologically advanced a culture gets, the less likely it is that those justifications hold.

This holds to almost all forms of classism.

The Drow were a Matriarchy because their Goddess said so. That works because their deity is there. That works less when they now have numerous demon Lord's who have no such uniform beliefs.

The Lashunta pulled it off because the females were demonstrably wiser than the men.

Other excuses are things like, the people are physically weaker - Which doesn't work in Pathfinder/Starfinder because sex has no effect on stats, and I believe doesn't work in the real world either. Also since the majority of shooting battles don't use strength that becomes a non-issue. Other claims are things like genetics or traits or what not, which are usually debunked as technology advances.

So, after thousands of years, cultures will evolve. Outdated and ignorant ideas about gender/sex/racial superiority will eventually go away. I mean look how far humanity has come in just over 2000 years.


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The drow's government is pretty odd in that context too. You essentially have a collection of small, competing fiefdoms over an underclass that's pretty much left to its own devices unless one of those fiefdoms has a direct interest in whatever's going on.

Such a system seems ripe for an eventual unification or complete destabilization, but paradoxically instead is stable enough to maintain itself for thousands of years.

The drow's mass migration to Apostae is especially bizarre given this system. I can't even really fathom how that worked.

HWalsh wrote:
The Drow were a Matriarchy because their Goddess said so.

I know that's how it is in Faerun but is that still the backstory in Golarion? I don't remember there being any Lolth analog in PF.

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There isn’t, that’s correct. In Pathfinder, the reason drow have a matriarchal evil society is because their initial leader became more and more “pragmatic” as the proto-drow struggled to survive in the Darklands, and after one of her sons murdered another in jealousy, she declared that her sons would serve her daughters, since in her view they were more level-headed and better leaders, which would increase the drow’s chances of survival. It had nothing to do with divine mandate in this instance, just an old rule that became entrenched as the status quo once the drow became settled.

As for the evil demon-worshipping part, that’s a combination of toxic divine essence from Rovagug that leaked out of his prison thanks to Earthfall, that made the proto-drow more ruthless and cruel, and then one of the daughters of their first leader began to hear whispers from demon lords in her head, offering her and her people enough power to not just survive in the Darklands, but thrive in it, and since her mind was already drifting more towards Chaotic Evil because of the Rovagug radiation, she agreed. And since the demons gave her the power to stay on top, other drow leaders, all of them women because of that decree, followed suit with other demon lords, thus founding the noble houses that continued through the Pathfinder days and past the Gap into Starfinder.

I admit this isn’t 100% accurate to the text, since my copy of Inner Sea Races is at home right now (otherwise I’d have just quoted it), but that’s the basics of why the drow are the way they are in this setting.


The interesting thing is that the original drow were really mirror images of the original elves. They were evil, because the elves were good. They were strong in divine magic, because elves were strong in arcane magic. They had a matriarchy, because the elves had a patriarchy. They lived in city in the underdark, because the elves lived in nature on the surface. Etc.

The original male drow had beards, similiar to the one Spock has in Star Trek's Mirror Universe.


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Tarik Blackhands wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:
MageHunter wrote:

I wasn't trying to say that patriarchies are more evil, it's just that it makes played more uncomfortable. A large fan base wouldn't like that, so paizo has to be careful.

Whereas for Drow, paizo has taken great steps to represent women in all aspects. Good, evil, and neutral. It's why there are a lot of female villains, and they took specific measures in Iron fang to just make female scoundrel.

So patriarchy is as bad as a matriarchy, it's just that one is a bit riskier to include in a game. To make money companies have to be careful of story elements like this.

Honestly, I'm cynical enough to say that the real problem with an oppressive patriarchy in the game is not that it makes players uncomfortable, per se. . . but that for an unfortunate number of players, it'd make them entirely *too* comfortable. Which is to say, the problem is that there's a not-insignificant minority of players who'd *not* view it as an evil horrible society. Instead, they'd get their Starfinder of Gor on, unironically.
Doubt that. Paizo's been fine with proper oppressive patriarchies in the past (orcs and Koshticae's cult [butchered spelling ho]) in Pathfinder and I haven't exactly seen people coming out of the woodwork to defend those cultures. What people DID get their jimmies rustled by was when LG Erastil preferred women be homemakers while men did the hunting/farming etc.

Two points. One, part of the reason people objected to Erastil was *because* he was LG. Having an outright good aligned deity espouse hardcore gender roles and patriarchy is basically saying "patriarchy is good, or at least not incompatible with good", in a way that is awfully close to espousing it. This is different from simply having a patriarchy in the setting, or having this come from a neutral aligned deity.

Two, this actually feeds into my point: note that Erastil is a major deity, and a good aligned one at that. He and his followers are *not* monsters or cultists or otherwise Clearly Bad And Outliers. Somebody tempted to play Pathfinder of Gor can't do that with orcs, without being openly evil. They *could* do so with followers of Erastil, and put on the veneer of being just fine.


Paizo still has a matriarchal society backed by Empyreal Lords where men can’t own property or participate in the government, so obviously they don’t actually thing this stuff is inherently evil, just situationally unpopular with their fan base and their bottom line.


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Xenocrat wrote:
Paizo still has a matriarchal society backed by Empyreal Lords where men can’t own property or participate in the government, so obviously they don’t actually thing this stuff is inherently evil, just situationally unpopular with their fan base and their bottom line.

If you’re talking about Anuli in Holomog that’s outright false, and I don’t know of any other societies backed by Empyreal lords.


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Yeah, the Anuli article in Distant Shores even mentions several male government ministers by name. Skimming through it again, I couldn't find any mention about non-women not being able to own property either.

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Metaphysician wrote:
Two points. One, part of the reason people objected to Erastil was *because* he was LG. Having an outright good aligned deity espouse hardcore gender roles and patriarchy is basically saying "patriarchy is good, or at least not incompatible with good", in a way that is awfully close to espousing it. This is different from simply having a patriarchy in the setting, or having this come from a neutral aligned deity.

Well, Anuli is a Neutral Good Matriarcy so it seems like that sort of government is not really attached either way to non-good cultures, that good groups can in fact be patriarchal or matriarchal. That and if I recall correctly, people read a LOT of stuff into Erastil that wasn't actually there because he was a traditionalist deity with conservative leanings so people ended up assuming he lined up 100% with certain real life political/religious beliefs.

Progression/Conservation is really more of a Chaos/Law argument than a good/evil one and he's very much a lawful god. Change isn't inherently good or evil, after all.

Grand Lodge

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So I went back to read the entry on the Drow planet and while it does state that they houses still control the Drow population, they are more or less broken up into city states. (I my minds eye, kinda like the Italian states were for quite a long time.) They are still Matriarchal, and all the top positions are Drow only.

But they aren't isolationist. People go to them for weapons and armaments, and they also go to them for fleshcrafting. I would imagine that there are others that go to them for other more base reasons as well.

So the Drow has a chance of becoming more relevant than the Elves in the new order of things.


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Ikiry0 wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:
Two points. One, part of the reason people objected to Erastil was *because* he was LG. Having an outright good aligned deity espouse hardcore gender roles and patriarchy is basically saying "patriarchy is good, or at least not incompatible with good", in a way that is awfully close to espousing it. This is different from simply having a patriarchy in the setting, or having this come from a neutral aligned deity.
Well, Anuli is a Neutral Good Matriarcy

We can stop right there, because everything past this is missing my point. Having a matriarchy in the setting as good-compatible *is not* the same problem as having a patriarchy in the setting decreed as good-compatible. This is not because of abstract elements of setting design, but because of things *in the real world*. Paizo doesn't need to be worried about groups of female gamers running the worst most abusive type of matriarchies as a power fantasy, and driving away male gamers from the hobby. They *do* have to worry about the reverse.

Scarab Sages

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*Sigh*. Wow, I can’t believe I’m going to post this here, and I’m sure I’m just going to get a TON of hate for it but, here goes.

A society where a gender has a significant political/socioeconomic advantage over the other is’nt INHERANTLY evil BY PATHFINDER STANDARDS. However, they can certainly quickly turn evil.

Pathfinder good is defined as being selfless, and having respect for others rights and feelings. Now could a matriarchy or patriarchy theoretically do that? Probably. Our own human history though shows that it quickly devolves into the people in charge not respecting the people under them, and our patriarchies have certainly done some TERRIBLE things to women that are evil and inexcusable.

Now Erastil’s platform kind of makes sense in strict pathfinder terms. Men and women both did work in his philosophy, and they both cared for each other and were encoraged to sacrafice to keep the family strong. One had more political power, and that’s unfair, certainly, but not pathfinder-evil.

Now, I want to make one thing 100% crystal clear. I do not DO NOT support mysogony or sexist regimes. Period, full stop. I don’t like them, and I am all for gender equality. I just want to point out that freedom and socio-political equality do not factor in to pathfinder’s good-evil alignment system. I am not saying we should have any sexual discrimination. I think it is wrong, it just isn’t evil in the pathfinder heavens-vs-Hells schema


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Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Scarab Sages

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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Sure, but pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are the same.

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VampByDay wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Sure, but pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are the same.

Pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are *mostly* the same.


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KingOfAnything wrote:
VampByDay wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Sure, but pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are the same.
Pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are *mostly* the same.

I was under the impression it was the same cosmology, just displaced by X amount of time.

Which, leaves me to wonder....

Spoiler:
What has Nocticula been up?


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VampByDay wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Sure, but pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are the same.

In a low-tech world, most jobs benefit more from high physical stats. In a high-tech world, most jobs use mental stats more, especially the best-paying jobs. So sexes that are equal in one setting may not be equal in the other.

In a muscle-powered world, the stronger sex can more easily oppress the weaker than vice-versa.

Scarab Sages

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whew wrote:
VampByDay wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Nobly stated, but as been noted several times in-thread, this IS Starfinder...

Sure, but pathfinder and Starfinder cosmology are the same.

In a low-tech world, most jobs benefit more from high physical stats. In a high-tech world, most jobs use mental stats more, especially the best-paying jobs. So sexes that are equal in one setting may not be equal in the other.

In a muscle-powered world, the stronger sex can more easily oppress the weaker than vice-versa.

Sorry, that is 100% not true. I have a degree in anthropology, and in general it works like this.

Sexual dimorphism (physical difference between the sexes) in humans is between 5-10%. Now for the top athaletes in the world, that is a pretty big gap, but for the general population, it is pretty easy to overcome with random genetics and training. Plus physical intimidation has never been a good basis for power. Not when a child can sneak up and kill your evil dictator with a knife in his sleep.

The current working theory as to why humans tend towards patriarchies has to do with procreation. In short it is much easier for guys to contribute to procreation than gals. Think about it: if a girl got pregnant before modern medicine, she had to carry the child to term which limits her, then nurse it for quite a while (babyfood not having been invented yet). So she’s out of the ‘procreation population’ for a while.

In essence, women are the bottleneck to procreation. So if a woman gets killed hunting or meeting an unfriendly tribe or exploring or whathaveyou, its a MUCH bigger problem than if a man gets killed. So the logical and thing to do (BACK THEN, not now) was to put women in low-risk tasks. Gathering food from well-known spots, raising children, stuff like that. (Tasks that NEED to get done to survive, but are low risk). Women were more valuable than men. Men were expendable and could be risked on the more dangerous hunts and meeting foreign tribes and exploring things.

So the theory is that early humans either figured this out, or the matriarchies died out, and patriarchies became the norm. And now that we have modern medicine, we don’t really need it, but it is so ingrained in our society it is hard to get rid of it (though we are making strides)


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How ironic that bad things happened from women being less expendable than men... Very well put.


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Metaphysician wrote:
We can stop right there, because everything past this is missing my point.

And my point is that having only one of them be good-compatible would be incredibly sexist. Either neither of them are able to be so, or both of them can be so. Otherwise it would be a double standard.

Yes, there very much are real life concerns about gender equality but it would also be sending rather a nasty message to go 'If you are traditional, you can't actually be good'. As Erastil doesn't 'Expouse hardcore gender roles' unless you really put a spin on his religion that isn't in the text.

Erastil's Beliefs wrote:
Erastil teaches his followers to embrace traditional and simpler ways of life, free of the constraints of modern civilization, a trait that often results in disagreements with more progressive deities such as Abadar; this difference in opinion leads to increasing conflict between these deities' respective clergies


Well “traditional” in the form of the patriarchy hasn’t been good so it’s actually not a double standard.


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Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Well “traditional” in the form of the patriarchy hasn’t been good so it’s actually not a double standard.

It's perfectly fine to believe what you believe, but arguing that a certain form of discrimination is compatible with good but only if applied in one direction and not the other is pretty much the definition of a double standard.

Arguing that the double standard is necessary or fine given the real world context surrounding the issue is one thing but call it what it is.


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Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Well “traditional” in the form of the patriarchy hasn’t been good so it’s actually not a double standard.

It rather is still. That and this is Pathfinder, not real life. Pathfinder doesn't have any record of being patriarchal as the 'Traditional' situation. When it talks about tradition in the context of Erastil, it talks about how he was the first hunter.

It seems to be more 'Small town/rural' rather than 'Patriarchal' and I think people are jumping at shadows with him. Shadows that DO exist in other places, yes but that doesn't mean they are everywhere.

Grand Lodge

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Actually there are precedence in Golarion of instilled patriarchy in Taldor. Taldor has never had a ruling queen, due to patriarchal rules and that is part of the plot in the upcoming AP line, where the party is trying to place Stavin's daughter on the throne.


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Herald wrote:
Actually there are precedence in Golarion of instilled patriarchy in Taldor. Taldor has never had a ruling queen, due to patriarchal rules and that is part of the plot in the upcoming AP line, where the party is trying to place Stavin's daughter on the throne.

Mind you, Taldor also doesn't worship Erastil. In fact the very first god mentioned is his more progressive opposition, Abadar. I imagine Erastil prefers 'Elders' to 'Decadent Bureaucracy'.

But yeah, I was talking more about the setting in general rather than specific nations. It's a much more egalitarian setting, which makes me very hesitant to link 'Traditional' with 'Patriarchal'.


Ikir0: I generally agree with you, but, for clarification purposes, the main "problem" most people have with Erastil stems from a line (or three?) in his deity article published in the Kingmaker AP.

Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Well “traditional” in the form of the patriarchy hasn’t been good so it’s actually not a double standard.
Squiggit wrote:

It's perfectly fine to believe what you believe, but arguing that a certain form of discrimination is compatible with good but only if applied in one direction and not the other is pretty much the definition of a double standard.

Arguing that the double standard is necessary or fine given the real world context surrounding the issue is one thing but call it what it is.

Also, this.

Let it be clear: I'm one who is disappointed the matriarchy concept was dropped from the lashunta (and am, in normal instances, just fine with the drow having it), but I find the drop makes sense, given the in-universe broad availability of the serum of sex-change - there just isn't a viable reason or method of keeping things "matriarchy" anymore, especially after the gap. So it makes sense.

And that's my problem with the drow. Are you seriously telling me that it wouldn't be a thing? Yeah, there's going to be body disphoria. That doesn't matter. Pop a pill, be an in-control female. Change back on your own time. It's cheap, easy, and lacks any sort of side-effects. There is going to be a sizable enough subculture that doesn't care that it isn't really reasonable to allow things to continue. It may have only been 300 years since the Gap, but it's not only been 300 years since the drow were thrown into social chaos - it can't be, because they don't know how or when they arrived (though some believe it happened "shortly" before the Gap).

Add that to the fact that drow have, traditionally, specialized in body (and genetic) modification; the entire lot of them are built on smuggling and dangerous shipments (weapons), and none of them are trustworthy. All of this makes it pretty clear that this isn't a brand new thing. It feels unjustified, even in a good guys/bad guys way, to have one system replaced and the other not.

Also, interestingly, the Core book suggests nothing like the matriarchy still exists, so... that's also it's own bit of weirdness, leaving this feeling more like a ret-ret-con... at least to me. I do understand that others feel differently, it's just a really odd thing, to my way of looking at it.


Herald wrote:
Actually there are precedence in Golarion of instilled patriarchy in Taldor. Taldor has never had a ruling queen, due to patriarchal rules and that is part of the plot in the upcoming AP line, where the party is trying to place Stavin's daughter on the throne.

This is actually a really interesting thing that I hadn't considered before. Thanks, Herald!

It's worth noting as well that Taldor, in-setting (at least as of PF), isn't evil. So... that's very interesting.

Ikiry0 also makes a good point: that it's neither associated with Erastil, nor clearly indicative of a broader trend in-setting. Hm.


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Tacticslion wrote:
And that's my problem with the drow. Are you seriously telling me that it wouldn't be a thing? Yeah, there's going to be body disphoria. That doesn't matter. Pop a pill, be an in-control female.

...do we have anything yet talking about how the Drow feel about that? As that feels like it could be something VERY interesting to examine if they continue with the 'Drow are Matriarchal' thing. Both in the concept of how it reflects their opinions on transgender people and in how they respond to people who would happily be a body they don't feel they line up with for the social advantages.

Heh...though I suppose it would literally make them Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists. That might not be something Paizo wants to take a bite of, issue-wise.

Grand Lodge

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Tacticslion wrote:
Herald wrote:
Actually there are precedence in Golarion of instilled patriarchy in Taldor. Taldor has never had a ruling queen, due to patriarchal rules and that is part of the plot in the upcoming AP line, where the party is trying to place Stavin's daughter on the throne.

This is actually a really interesting thing that I hadn't considered before. Thanks, Herald!

It's worth noting as well that Taldor, in-setting (at least as of PF), isn't evil. So... that's very interesting.

Ikiry0 also makes a good point: that it's neither associated with Erastil, nor clearly indicative of a broader trend in-setting. Hm.

Sorry didn't mean to invalidate a point. Merely wanted to add to the conversation.


I don't think you invalidated the conversation, my dude - you did a good job!


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Metaphysician wrote:
Paizo doesn't need to be worried about groups of female gamers running the worst most abusive type of matriarchies as a power fantasy, and driving away male gamers from the hobby. They *do* have to worry about the reverse.

Good to know as a man I can't be trusted to not drive women away from the community without additional vetting, but all women can be intrinsically trusted not to do the same with no vetting necessary.

Shame on you and the people who favourited your post. These sorts of comments are what drives people away from the community. I only hope you and those who supported your sentiment are all men, lest you be hypocritical as well.


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Metaphysician wrote:
Paizo doesn't need to be worried about groups of female gamers running the worst most abusive type of matriarchies as a power fantasy, and driving away male gamers from the hobby. They *do* have to worry about the reverse.

I am extremely offended by this post. As a "male gamer" who has strictly opposed any players from driving any other players away (and yes, I HAVE had abusive female players AND GMs who were just as bad as the most abusive male gamers and male GMs) regardless of gender/creed/etc.

I do not need Paizo to police me just because of the biology that I was born with. This is just offensive.

Pro-tip:
If you swap the subject of a post, and it becomes offensive, then it is still offensive if they aren't. So, if you saw:

"Paizo doesn't need to be worried about male gamers running the worst abusive type of patriarchies as a power fantasy, and driving female gamers from the hobby. They *do* have to worry about the reverse."

And you found it offensive? Then what you originally posted is just as offensive.


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Tacticslion wrote:

{. . .}

Let it be clear: I'm one who is disappointed the matriarchy concept was dropped from the lashunta (and am, in normal instances, just fine with the drow having it), but I find the drop makes sense, given the in-universe broad availability of the serum of sex-change - there just isn't a viable reason or method of keeping things "matriarchy" anymore, especially after the gap. So it makes sense.

And that's my problem with the drow. Are you seriously telling me that it wouldn't be a thing? Yeah, there's going to be body disphoria. That doesn't matter. Pop a pill, be an in-control female. Change back on your own time. It's cheap, easy, and lacks any sort of side-effects. {. . .}

Who says that stuff is even legal among the Drow?

Hmmm . . . plot hook . . . .


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UnArcaneElection wrote:
Tacticslion wrote:

{. . .}

Let it be clear: I'm one who is disappointed the matriarchy concept was dropped from the lashunta (and am, in normal instances, just fine with the drow having it), but I find the drop makes sense, given the in-universe broad availability of the serum of sex-change - there just isn't a viable reason or method of keeping things "matriarchy" anymore, especially after the gap. So it makes sense.

And that's my problem with the drow. Are you seriously telling me that it wouldn't be a thing? Yeah, there's going to be body disphoria. That doesn't matter. Pop a pill, be an in-control female. Change back on your own time. It's cheap, easy, and lacks any sort of side-effects. {. . .}

Who says that stuff is even legal among the Drow?

Hmmm . . . plot hook . . . .

Lets consider some things here with the drow. As far as my understanding goes:

They have taken up residence on the second furthest planet of the system, they may have a major space port and center of commerce but it is heavily controlled by House Zeizerer, and the Drow may have a long time to expand their 'meager' population but it clearly hasn't been long enough for them perhaps in part due to the houses making use of tightly controlled genetic-selection technology.

Given their matriarchal status and relatively limited population, I would not be surprised to know if House Zeizerer has tight controls on it. This may take the form of Laws or social pressure. It may be widely available on Pact Worlds, and the drow do live on a Pact World, but.. It wouldn't be a stretch to assume its usage would be less common. Hell, its possible that there is discrimination against female drow that used to be male if the usage of such a potion isn't illegal among them.

Am I the only one who feels odd saying that a CE race would have laws, and discussing something to potentially be illegal?


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Nah, you can have chaotic groups with laws. Otherwise you'd never have a chaotic government ever and there are plenty of chaotic countries.

But yeah, I wouldn't be surprised if there is a lot of back and forward politics about 'Trying to hide useful women that used to be men in your own house' and 'Trying to find out which women in an enemy house used to be men to get rid of them'.

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