The unpopular opinion; Maybe Paladins shouldn't be a class


Prerelease Discussion

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Paladin functions best as one 'branch' of an Extremist Champion type class.

They get their things from Lawful Good roughly the way Walsh says, but others get similar thematic things from their own sources.

Emphasize the 'Patron Deity is optional' aspect. Many deities desire Champions, but not every champion chooses to serve a deity.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Manager

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Removed some posts and replies. Paladins have a history of being a touchy subject. Please be respectful of each others opinions on what they want to see for Paladins.

Shadow Lodge

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Quote:

Come on, we all know the answer...

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers.

They know that for a simple 2 level dip they can get +Charisma to all of their Saves. That is it. That is the ONLY reason people really want non-L/G Paladins.

They don't care about being a Paladin. They want those sweet, sweet, powers. That is it.

And that, to me, is reason enough to fight to keep them away from the Paladin.

Okay. I'm done laughing.

Hwalsh, you've just proved you know jack squat about powergaming.

No powergamer in their right mind is going to do a two-level out-of-class dip on an Oracle or Sorcerer.

That's a full Spell Level worth of progression, out the window. On two classes that already have delayed casting compared to their prepared counterparts.

Cha-to-saves is not worth that. At all. Especially to a powergamer.


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Rule number one of power gaming.

Thou Shalt Not Lose Caster Levels.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


HW, you and others keep insisting that LG gets 'all the candy' even though mechanically there's not a lot of 'all the candy' in such a class.

Few have offered reasoned responses to my 'if the candy was removed would you still play the class if it required LG' thought experiment.

Most have said "Well, it'd need different candy to make up for the candy not being there."

Exactly. Barbarians in PF1 can be just as effective as paladins and they don't have a code at all. They have the chaotic thing going, but that's a lot easier to deal with than the code.

If it's really about the power(candy) people would just play caster's who are also more powerful than paladin, and typically don't have a code, and if they do they it's much easier to deal with than a paladin.
The ideal of wanting the code removed for power has no legs to stand on.

Fix the issues with jerk GM's, jerk players, and the poorly explain alignment system, and people would be more open to keeping it LG.

Another Paladin example:
I was in a game with a paladin as a player, and we were about to break into a place, and he wanted us to knock on the door and ask for permission to come in.

So we all gave him the "are you serious" look, in real life.
We then told the player this was a terrible idea, and that he would be the one knocking on the door.

The bad guys of course told him to go away. He kept knocking and asking to come in. The opened a small panel and shot him with a crossbow.

He finally got the hint, and then still insisted that we go in through the front door. Once again we tried to tell him they're probably going to be waiting for us. I forgot to mention that he announced himself as a paladin.

So we told him that he's going to be the one to open the door.

He opens the door, and gets met with more arrows.

We won a fight that was a lot tougher than it needed to be because of "honor". He almost died in the fight.

If HWalsh wants people to embrace this paladin concept he at least needs to do come up with suggestions on how to handle lawful stupid paladins and overly restrictive GM's.

It won't satisfy everyone, but he'll remove some opposition.

Personally I'm fine with an LG paladin if there is more wording about what is ok and not ok about what a paladin can do.

If not then an "any good" Paladin also works.

Despite me not having any problems with the class as a GM I did have that one instance as a player, and I'd prefer for it to not happen again.


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It seems silly to base your argument on 1e abilities we don't even know are going to be there in 2e. (I rather think that Divine Grace will not exist as-it-is-now in 2e, frankly.)


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Ian Bell wrote:
It seems silly to base your argument on 1e abilities we don't even know are going to be there in 2e. (I rather think that Divine Grace will not exist as-it-is-now in 2e, frankly.)

Even if it does exist, we have no idea how saves will work...


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again I am for any good aligned
and im no popwer gamer. just real big on defense


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HWalsh wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


HW, you and others keep insisting that LG gets 'all the candy' even though mechanically there's not a lot of 'all the candy' in such a class.

Few have offered reasoned responses to my 'if the candy was removed would you still play the class if it required LG' thought experiment.

Most have said "Well, it'd need different candy to make up for the candy not being there."

Wei Ji - Here is the thing...

What is the number one power people want out of non-LG Paladins...

Is it Smite Evil? Nope.
Is it Lay on Hands? Nope.
Is it Channeling? Nope.
Is it the Divine Health? Nuh uh.

What is it?

Divine Grace... See, and this is why people were never satisfied with the non-L/G Paladins they made... None of them got Divine Grace. (And no Antipaladin, as stupid as it is, isn't a Paladin, it is an Antipaladin.)

Not getting Divine Grace instantly made the Archetype suck... Why?

Come on, we all know the answer...

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers.

They know that for a simple 2 level dip they can get +Charisma to all of their Saves. That is it. That is the ONLY reason people really want non-L/G Paladins.

They don't care about being a Paladin. They want those sweet, sweet, powers. That is it.

And that, to me, is reason enough to fight to keep them away from the Paladin.

No, that is not it. That is a terrible way to power game. Losing caster levels is very detrimental, and not worth the bonuses to saves.

As a non-paladin I've been able to get casters to have high fort saves, and they already get the good will save progression. Most reflex saves are attacking hit points so energy resistance helps with that. In addition, with them being a SAD class they can also get high hit points.

This is from a REAL game, not theorycrafting. I've also had a player try to do the paladin/sorcerer thing. It failed horribly.

One of the basic rules of power gaming is to not lose caster levels.
----
How did I get a good fort save and high hit points.
As a caster I can at least put a 14 into con to start. Hit points just like weapon damage relies more on the bonuses than the base hit point roll or weapon roll.

As a caster I had access to magic item creation feats allowing me to get the stat boosting items before I'd get access to them by buying them.

The same applies to the fort save. I also picked up Great Fortitude, and by the time it was said and done I was rivaling full BAB classes with regard to fort saves and hit points.

You see as a low BAB caster the average roll for hit points is 3.5.
For bards and oracles it's 4.5 per level.

D10 classes only get 5.5. So before you add in constitution the difference isn't really all that great.

How those martial classes have to worry about 2 physical stats. So when they choose a belt they can get the belt that boost one stat to a greater degree or a much more expensive belt that boost two stats, but each stat will be lower.

Casters(bards, sorcerers, and oracles) can just boost con, and not care about 2 stats. Even if they do those magic item creation feats make the price a lot less important.

That same con score also allows the casters to not have to worry as much for saves. By the time you add in great fortitude as mentioned above and cloaks of resistance(remember magic item creation) they don't have a problem with fort saves.

All of the goodness(candy), without losing class levels or spells(the best candy in the game).


wraithstrike wrote:

If HWalsh wants people to embrace this paladin concept he at least needs to do come up with suggestions on how to handle lawful stupid paladins and overly restrictive GM's.

It won't satisfy everyone, but he'll remove some opposition.

I've never had the issue of clashing with a GM about what is, or isn't, allowed to be honest. Not in PFS, not in any home game, nowhere. Most of the people I play with share my views in general so I haven't ever run into this.

The Paladin code in the book is completely cut and dry though:

"A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class features except proficiencies if she ever willingly commits an evil act.

Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.

Associates: While she may adventure with good or neutral allies, a paladin avoids working with evil characters or with anyone who consistently offends her moral code. Under exceptional circumstances, a paladin can ally with evil associates, but only to defeat what she believes to be a greater evil. A paladin should seek an atonement spell periodically during such an unusual alliance, and should end the alliance immediately should she feel it is doing more harm than good. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good."

So let us break this down, as Paizo already had one of the least restrictive Paladin codes *ever* in the history of Paladins.

1. Paladin must be Lawful Good and loses all class features except proficiencies if she ever willingly commits and evil act.

This is easy peasy lemon squeasy.

You can commit non-lawful acts as long as it doesn't change your alignment, but perform one evil willingly and you're toast. The great line their is willingly. You have to willingly do the act, meaning you also have to know the act is evil. It isn't that hard to avoid evil actions.

2. Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority

This is pretty simple. Legitimate authority is pretty clear. A tyrant king is not usually a legitimate authority. Even if it is, you have to respect it, not necessarily heed it. If legitimate authority says to let innocent people die, any Paladin worth their salt, is going to save innocent people anyway.

3. act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth)

This is the one that gets people. What does "acting with honor" mean. That is the one that causes the most problems. Some people define it as "Don't use sneak attack" and I am a bit iffy on that one, ambushing an opponent and actually stabbing them in the back... Sure. Feinting someone and them hitting when you have an opening... Probably not. Even so, it is something you should probably avoid doing.

Generally I codify this for my players by saying:

No using poisons.
No ambushing people.
No killing opponents who you accepted the surrender of.
No killing enemies who can't fight back. (Executions are a different situation, those aren't enemies. Also there is a difference between can't and won't as well. An enemy who is irredeemable who tries to get out of death by feigning surrender isn't in the clear if the Paladin doesn't accept the surrender.)
And a few others...

I have a pretty firm grasp on honorable, and so do most people, if the fight doesn't seem fair, then it probably isn't honorable.

4. help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends)

This is self explanatory.

5. punish those who harm or threaten innocents.

Again, self explanatory.


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Not allowed to ambush anyone? Yeesh. And I say this as someone arguing for KEEPING Paladins LG.


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HWalsh wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:

If HWalsh wants people to embrace this paladin concept he at least needs to do come up with suggestions on how to handle lawful stupid paladins and overly restrictive GM's.

It won't satisfy everyone, but he'll remove some opposition.

I've never had the issue of clashing with a GM about what is, or isn't, allowed to be honest. Not in PFS, not in any home game, nowhere. Most of the people I play with share my views in general so I haven't ever run into this.

The Paladin code in the book is completely cut and dry though:

"A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class features except proficiencies if she ever willingly commits an evil act.

Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.

Associates: While she may adventure with good or neutral allies, a paladin avoids working with evil characters or with anyone who consistently offends her moral code. Under exceptional circumstances, a paladin can ally with evil associates, but only to defeat what she believes to be a greater evil. A paladin should seek an atonement spell periodically during such an unusual alliance, and should end the alliance immediately should she feel it is doing more harm than good. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good."

So let us break this down, as Paizo already had one of the least restrictive Paladin codes *ever* in the history of Paladins.

1. Paladin must be Lawful Good and loses all class features except proficiencies if she ever willingly commits and evil act.

This is easy peasy lemon squeasy.

You can commit non-lawful acts as long as it doesn't change your alignment, but perform one evil willingly and you're toast. The great line their is willingly. You have to willingly do the act,...

You don't get that this isn't just about you. I also only had one bad incident, but the difference between me and you is that I realize not everyone is me. My experiences don't dictate what the game should be. Going on my experiences I can just dismiss everyone and tell them to be quiet, but I've seen enough other people have problems to know that just because it's not a problem for me, that it's not a problem for someone else.

So tell me how would you handle the lawful stupid paladin or the GM who insist on "because honor", when "honor" is not a defined game term, and is very subjective.

How do you deal with the paladin in a catch-22 situation as a player and GM?

You're dismissing other people's experiences, not helping them find solutions, and as long as you do that your crusade(pun intended) won't get you anywhere.

I've never had a problem with full casters and/or SoD and SoS spells taking over my games either, but I know some people do. That's way I won't be complaining when they get toned down.

If I ranted against them with "well it works for me" that wouldn't get me nearly as much traction as trying to find common ground.

edit: I've seen arguments that a tyrant king is a legitimate authority. I don't agree, but these are the things that people deal with at tables.

edit 2 :Sorry I missed things on my first read, but everyone thinks they have a firm grasp on "honorable". Saying I have a firm grasp on honorable isn't really helping.

To some your "no ambushing" would fall into the lawful stupid category.

I mentioned how this can be bad idea in an earlier post.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Orthos wrote:


Any solution that makes one group happy is going to irrevocably infuriated or at least frustrate the other. The two opinions here are not at all compatible, as both rely on infringing against the core desire of the other group in sone way.

Isn't that a good description of pretty much the line Paizo is going to have to walk with any rule change in the upcoming new edition/playtest? :P

I mean at its heart...this to me has always been a challenge of a new edition. Lot's of folks thing one is warranted, but most of those folks have widely different ideas of what their Pathfinder Second edition would look like


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HWalsh wrote:

What is the number one power people want out of non-LG Paladins...

Is it Smite Evil? Nope.
Is it Lay on Hands? Nope.
Is it Channeling? Nope.
Is it the Divine Health? Nuh uh.

What is it?

Divine Grace... See, and this is why people were never satisfied with the non-L/G Paladins they made... None of them got Divine Grace. (And no Antipaladin, as stupid as it is, isn't a Paladin, it is an Antipaladin.)

Not getting Divine Grace instantly made the Archetype suck... Why?

Come on, we all know the answer...

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers.

They know that for a simple 2 level dip they can get +Charisma to all of their Saves. That is it. That is the ONLY reason people really want non-L/G Paladins.

They don't care about being a Paladin. They want those sweet, sweet, powers. That is it.

And that, to me, is reason enough to fight to keep them away from the Paladin.

I disagree. I couldn't give a flying flip about Divine Grace particularly. I care a lot more about the actually iconic Paladin features, like Lay on Hands, Channel Energy, Detect and Smite Evil, Divine Bond, and just generally being Cha-based.

You know what I really want from Paladins? I want to be the Paragon of Good. I want to stand up for the weak, defend the defenseless, heal the wounded, liberate the oppressed, lead the armies of Good against the forces of Evil, and lay down some Sacred Judgement against the forces of Darkness.

But here's the thing: I am by nature Chaotic. I physically cannot play Lawful worth a dang, it disagrees with me on a metaphysical level. In fact, I feel most comfortable playing Chaotic Good. So I'm flat barred from playing this Paragon of Good, unless I want to take the archetype that explicitly calls out as "weakening" and being "drained" just because I want to utilize a Good alignment that's not Lawful. In contrast, the Antipaladin, the Paragon of Evil, can not only be Lawful or Chaotic, it has two separate archetypes that allows Law.


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Well, yes. As a chaotic it doesn’t work to play the paragon of lawful good. That is true.


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RDM42 wrote:
Well, yes. As a chaotic it doesn’t work to play the paragon of lawful good. That is true.

Point being the game has equal space for a Paragon of Chaotic Good, that doesn't have to be handicapped for being chaotic but makes a lot of sense to share certain traits with the Paladin.

Hence my suggestion of a branched class.


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something else a lot of people don't get about divine grace being it is cha bonus to all throws. is that it is only really good early on. as it stands now, the paladin becomes immune to charm and compulsion later on
and being that paladins get immunity to all diseases including magical ones also makes divine grace not as powerful as it seams.

so to add that to a neutral good paladin and a chaotic good paladin would not be that big of a deal and I fail to see how it would be since only LG ones the so called pure of hearters would be the ones that would be prime targets to fall...


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RDM42 wrote:
Well, yes. As a chaotic it doesn’t work to play the paragon of lawful good. That is true.

You're right, Chaotic cannot be Paragon of Lawful Good. At no point did I ever say anything about being Paragon of Law, just being Paragon of Good. Why does only Lawful get to be a Paragon of Good without being literally drained and weakened?


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HWalsh wrote:
Xerres wrote:
Stuff

Okay, hold on, this is a red herring.

Nobody here, not even myself, said that Lawful Good is the best good. I've said, time and time again, that the Lawful and Good have NOTHING to do with "best good" it has to do with those are the energies needed to make the Paladin's POWERS work.

I'm a little frustrated that people keep ignoring this part. Its not about the best good, or the most good, and never has been. It is about the lore behind how this class works.

Yes, to many, the concept of the Lawful Good character is among the "Most Good"

It is simply put someone who is altruistic (good) who believes that laws, both natural and supernatural, improve society (lawful) are the most beneficial to the people.

That isn't saying that someone who is chaotic good, IE are altruistic (good) who believes that personal freedom, and not laws, improve people's lives, and doesn't care particularly about social constructs (chaotic) which they feel is not the most beneficial to people, isn't good.

That isn't saying that someone who is neutral good, IE are altruistic (good) who doesn't really care strongly one way or the other about laws and doesn't particularly have a strong belief on if laws or personal freedom are more important to society, (neutral) isn't good.

Is Lawful Good the most good? That is a matter of opinion. All that the lore states is that those Lawful and Good energies together are required to activate Paladin powers. It is you who are reading too much into that and saying that it is stating that is the most good.

None of us have said it is, or isn't, the most good. We have just said that it is what is required to activate the powers of a Paladin. That is all it is.

HWalsh wrote:
*Regarding desire for a Paladin of Desna* They like the abilities of the class, but they don't want to play a "goodie two shoes" character.

That seems like saying that allowing other alignments is a way to get less righteous characters to be Paladins. Because only Lawful Good can be righteous.

HWalsh wrote:
*Regarding Chaotic Good Paladins in general.* If the Paladin code says they aren't allowed to use Poison, the Chaotic Good Paladin will easily be able to argue, "Nope. I'm Chaotic, so I'll use Poison, who cares about the Code if it gets in my way. I'll also cheat, lie, and do all kinds of other non-Paladin-like things because... Again... Chaotic... If the rules get in my way, and it isn't like this is a self-imposed code, this is a code handed down to me, which my alignment says I have no reason to uphold."

That's outright saying that Chaotic Good characters apparently can't follow any guidelines at all and are morons who just do whatever because lol teh randomz. A Chaotic character won't follow rules just because they're rules, but they will follow what they believe in and if your belief is strong enough to become a Paladin then its strong enough to follow the Code you believe in.

HWalsh wrote:
*Snipped from your first post in your thread about keeping the Paladin the way you like it, saying what a Paladin is.* The Paladin. The idea of a warrior of good that was the epitome of virtue.

Paladins are the epitome of virtue, and cannot be anything but Lawful. Virtue does seem synonymous with Good. So I read that as "Paladins are the epitome of Good." and then read further how vehemently you despise the notion that an epitome of Good could be Chaotic, and thus do I fish up this apparent herring.

HWalsh wrote:
*Endless Posts About Chaotic Aligned Characters Wanting Power Without 'Price' or 'Responsibility'.

I mean, come on, what am I supposed to take away from that Walsh? Its not that Lawful Good is inherently better, just that Chaotic is inherently worse? Why does it always come down to "They just want money for nothing!" with that. And don't go off about Divine Grace again. That's as annoying to them as my 'Red Herring' was to you.

Nox Aeterna wrote:

This one isn't Walsh, different post about Paladin special sauce. Do keep in mind, im unsure people that people who want to play a "paladin" will want to play it after said lore changes.

Because ultimately being a paladin does matter ingame or atleast should in my opinion. You arent just a random sacred warrior, aka warpriest or cleric, no, you are a paladin, you are a symbol that goes beyond even the god you serve.

This symbol you become comes from both its restrictions. Simply put, being a paladin means a lot of things, very key things.

If paizo changes those things to each time broad more and more, then being a paladin ingame also change with the lore.

To the point where yes, you will eventually just be another sacred warrior of your faith, no better than a cleric, not to be treated any different either.

Its really the posts like this that lead me to draw the assumptions of my 'Red Herring'. The opposition to letting any other alignment in on this tasty pie, because then the Lawful Good variant isn't 'Special' any more. Its just like all those other heroes...

And again, how do I not take that to mean that Lawful Good is the superior alignment apparently! Its the alignment that gets the Super Special Ultimate Champion, because the other alignments aren't good enough!

And sorry to Nox that I picked out your post in response to Walsh, you're of course welcome to your opinion, it just sticks out to me as what I'm talking about.

Lastly, credit where credit is due:
You absolutely did say that the Paladin is the combination of Lawful and Good energies, repeatedly in many posts, and I'm not claiming otherwise. And there was one or two mentions that you don't oppose classes for other alignments as long as they're nothing like the Paladin.

But, it still comes across to me in the posts of many Pro-Pala-Dinners that they want to keep the Paladin the "ELITE CHAMPION OF JUSTICE!" who is morally superior to the other Heroes. Recognized in game for how amazing they are. And when people talk about wanting to open the class, you talk a lot about power and not wanting those other Heroes to get any of it. Justify it by saying that other alignments just aren't up to snuff.

So yeah, it still seems to me like many Pro-Pala-Dinners think that Lawful Good is Best Good, other alignments can't handle the awesome responsibility of being a real Champion of Justice, and you want to keep things that way because it gives a sense of moral superiority and just having your favorite view validated.

I do not doubt, for a second, that you care about the tradition as well. I am certain you're very attached to the idea of the Paladin, have enjoyed it for decades, so on and so forth. I've only played since 2001, so I don't get to claim decades. But I do claim love for the Paladin, everything I think it represents, and I absolutely think that you and many others are attached to the wrong aspects of the Paladin class and what I think it should represent.

You're so adamant that only a Lawful Good Paladin, Warrior of Good and Epitome of Virtue, can wield such power. But only a Sith deals in absolutes, and I shall do what I must. ;)

(Man, a Paladin vs Paladin battle because each thinks the other is falling from the Code would be so rad... I have to go arrange something like that.)


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4

Sovereign Court

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I don't think it's that unpopular of an opinion. I'm all for it in fact. However I'd want them to be an archetype of Cavalier and see that as a charisma based martial class.


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HWalsh wrote:
Divine Grace... See, and this is why people were never satisfied with the non-L/G Paladins they made... None of them got Divine Grace. (And no Antipaladin, as stupid as it is, isn't a Paladin, it is an Antipaladin.)

You seem overly focused on Divine Grace, a class feature that we don't even know will make it to 2e in the same form.

HWalsh wrote:

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers.

They know that for a simple 2 level dip they can get +Charisma to all of their Saves. That is it. That is the ONLY reason people really want non-L/G Paladins.

They don't care about being a Paladin. They want those sweet, sweet, powers. That is it.

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers can all be multiclassed with the Paladin already. If you feel that Divine Grace is so overpowered, maybe Divine Grace needs to be altered or removed from 2e.


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How about we fix the code and add an ability to solve how it's handled?

Code: Add a clause that states something to the effect that you have to choose the path of least harm or evil when put in a catch 22. So yes you can lie to save a bunch of children from certain death etc. if not lying is the only other option. That being one example.

Divine Guidance: A voice in your head or your conscience or whatever gives you a warning before you do something which will violate the code. Why? Because while players might be confused about what causes a fall the character should after years of training know better. Not a perfect solution but it could work.


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Lemartes wrote:

How about we fix the code and add an ability to solve how it's handled?

Code: Add a clause that states something to the effect that you have to choose the path of least harm or evil when put in a catch 22. So yes you can lie to save a bunch of children from certain death etc. if not lying is the only other option. That being one example.

Divine Guidance: A voice in your head or your conscience or whatever gives you a warning before you do something which will violate the code. Why because while players might be confused what causes a fall the character should after years of training know better. Not a perfect solution but it could work.

I don't think that will work with people who want the other alignments, because I think they care about the idea that their favorite or chosen alignment can be just as special as Lawful Good.

But I do think that would be a great addition to the Paladin in general, regardless of the other arguments. Just something to reassure players that they don't have to walk on eggshells with the class. All things said and done, I love having more people play the Paladin and characters like it, so anything that makes it easier would make me happy.


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I'm okay with other alignments. :)


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Xerres wrote:
Lemartes wrote:

How about we fix the code and add an ability to solve how it's handled?

Code: Add a clause that states something to the effect that you have to choose the path of least harm or evil when put in a catch 22. So yes you can lie to save a bunch of children from certain death etc. if not lying is the only other option. That being one example.

Divine Guidance: A voice in your head or your conscience or whatever gives you a warning before you do something which will violate the code. Why because while players might be confused what causes a fall the character should after years of training know better. Not a perfect solution but it could work.

I don't think that will work with people who want the other alignments, because I think they care about the idea that their favorite or chosen alignment can be just as special as Lawful Good.

But I do think that would be a great addition to the Paladin in general, regardless of the other arguments. Just something to reassure players that they don't have to walk on eggshells with the class. All things said and done, I love having more people play the Paladin and characters like it, so anything that makes it easier would make me happy.

Nah - Paladins are fine if they take the crap about falling out - the fact is that 'falling paladins' should be a sidebar that explains that removing a core part of a player's character is a violation as much as having that character sexually assaulted in game.

In other words it always starts as a hard NO and can only be handled if everyone is aware of the implications and OK with telling that type of story. That's beyond 'other alignment' paladins. If they put that kind of language in the class and remove the 'does a paladin fall if they step on a kitten's tail' crud the class will have been made better for it.


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Bloodrealm wrote:
Not allowed to ambush anyone? Yeesh. And I say this as someone arguing for KEEPING Paladins LG.

Looking over his list and seeing some common sense tactics to be used by anyone including Paladins imo. His version of a Paladin is to play one with suicidal tendencies imo. Paladin must stupidly charge forward against overwhelming opposition calling attention to his allies even if it is detrimental to them and may cause their death. Throw out any common sense because dammit Paladins are supposed to throw their lives at every damn opportunity. Heroism is one thing. Throwing one lives away is not heroic imo.

Correct me if I am wrong where in literature or in any version of D&D are Paladins supposed to commit suicide. At the very least if someone asks me to show what a Lawful Stupid Paladin looks like I can point to Hwalsh list as a example.


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I'm gonna throw my hat into the ring; despite not being a huge fan of playing as divine casters, the Paladin has always been my favorite divine class to play as, both mechanically and explicitly because of their alignment restrictions.

In a mystery/P.I. game that I've been running, I had the party get hired by the brother of a paladin who was being tried for the murder of his girlfriend, but because he still had his paladin powers, his brother was dead set that he was innocent.

Spoiler:
In reality, he did kill his girlfriend; he discovered that she was associating herself with a murderous cabal of mages, and that she was going to murder an innocent woman in the near future because the cabal ordered her to.

The mere presence of a paladin in any game brings the perfect opportunity to bring up questions of ethics into a game (but a GM should NEVER single the paladin out in desperate attempts to get them to fall, because at that point it's just being a jerk), and frankly I wouldn't want to give that sort of narrative potential up for anything.

That being said, I feel like that the archetype system in P2e does present some opportunities to play with the paladin's alignment restrictions; I feel like the antipaladin/tyrant antipaladin should be retooled into paladin archetypes, as it would prevent the need to make a base class that's essentially just mirror versions of the paladin. Additionally, I always thought that it would be cool if there was a paladin archetype that made the paladin chaotic good and had a specific focus on liberation and opposing tyranny (maybe called the liberator?), but that's just an opinion of mine, and I've heard good arguments about how a CG paladin could backfire.


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The main problem is, my suggestion was "let's have Paladins appear in a different form for 2e," while it seems some are hearing "let's remove Paladins entirely."

I'm suggesting the Paladin class be diversified to represent Paladins/AntiPaladins and any full BAB divine warrior, whilst still requiring those with the title of Paladin to remain LG.


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Ya know, 5e does this class, called a paladin, which has an archtype in which you can play the classic style of paladin, even without being LG (gasp!)


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DrDeth wrote:
karlbadmannersV2 wrote:
I see absolutely no reason Paladin cannot *EVOLVE* to being multiple alignments. It's silly to hold onto the "LG ONLY!" notion
Why is it "silly"? Look, no one has a big issue with Monks being Lawful, right?

As much as I’ve been arguing for freeing the Paladin class from its alignment restrictions, Monks are what I care about the most. And their alignment restriction needs to be purged with fire and brimstone, too.

Mechanically, the only things lawful about them was Ki Strike Lawful and the DR 10/Chaotic from Perfect Self. Which could just as easily have been Ki Strike (Lawful if you’re lawful, Chaotic if you’re chaotic, and if you’re neutral, pick one) and making your Perfect Self DR reflect your Ki Strike.

Fluffwise, Monks are only lawful because they’re supposed to be disciplined. Which, yes, is a lawful trait (depending on what you’re defining as lawful versus chaotic). But there’s so much else to be lawful that the Monk concept just does not give a damn about. Putting society’s needs first versus individualism. Rigidity and tradition versus creativity based on merit. Respect for authority on the basis of authority versus respect for a person never minding their authority.

Is a lawful character someone who is neutral, neutral, neutral, lawful (insofar as he is disciplined), neutral, neutral? Yes, he’s hitting the only checkmark the Monk’s fluff cares about, but that’s not the same as being lawful on the law/chaos axis. Or worse, what about chaotic, chaotic, neutral, lawful (disciplined), neutral, chaotic? Again, the fluff of the Monk is satisfied that it’s being met and uncaring about those other aspects of the law/chaos axis that don’t matter, but can such a character be fairly said to be lawful?


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graystone wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Look, no one has a big issue with Monks being Lawful, right?

I do...

Kain Dragonhand wrote:
Because they want all of the Paladin goodness without the restriction of actually being good and lawful.

I want to be able to take the class and be fairly sure that the game isn't going to devolve into a 'did I fall' quandary in a catch 22 moment because the DM is like you and HWalsh MUST have a restriction in alignment and it's a duty/requirement to test it. I want to have a good time, not 'hold a grenade/bomb' and hope it doesn't go off ruining everyone's good time because I played a character class with a know alignment/code issue that makes me lose my entire class abilities because of a disagreement over aligned actions.

From my experience, CE characters have less issues than paladins as far as party cohesion and have less moments of disruption...

Bolded for emphasis.

This is a Saturday afternoon game. A diversion. Something that should be eagerly anticipated and looked forward to, not dreaded. As such, introducing such things as worrying about suddenly not being able to level up my Monk or losing my class features for an honest disagreement in good faith and for disagreeing that being good can even BE a class feature do not and cannot have a place. That level of scrutiny is unfair, unwanted, and unwarranted. Especially when it wouldn’t even be the case with the same character but in a different class.

I don’t come for the Sword of Damocles. I don’t come for the criticism of my values or the attacks on my character. I come to play a freaking game, creating what I think a cool adventurer would be, teaming him or her up with other people’s ideas of fun characters, and exploring weird places and fighting awesome monsters. How does that suggest, imply, or even have room for this level of disdain and elitism?


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In regard to Monks I feel there is confusion between "lawful" and "disciplined." A circus acrobat would require just as much training and discipline as a Monk, but when people think carnie they think "chaotic."

To go even further, why must Barbarians be non Lawful? Why couldn't a character be a straight-laced warrior poet with anger issues?


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Simply put, Temple Monks committed to their order is only one of many forms characters in the Monk class can take. Chaotic monks are just as much a thing as lawful ones [in fact I imagine many monks from fiction are neutral on the Law/Chaos axis.]


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HWalsh wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


HW, you and others keep insisting that LG gets 'all the candy' even though mechanically there's not a lot of 'all the candy' in such a class.

Few have offered reasoned responses to my 'if the candy was removed would you still play the class if it required LG' thought experiment.

Most have said "Well, it'd need different candy to make up for the candy not being there."

Wei Ji - Here is the thing...

What is the number one power people want out of non-LG Paladins...

Is it Smite Evil? Nope.
Is it Lay on Hands? Nope.
Is it Channeling? Nope.
Is it the Divine Health? Nuh uh.

What is it?

Divine Grace... See, and this is why people were never satisfied with the non-L/G Paladins they made... None of them got Divine Grace. (And no Antipaladin, as stupid as it is, isn't a Paladin, it is an Antipaladin.)

Not getting Divine Grace instantly made the Archetype suck... Why?

Come on, we all know the answer...

Bards, Oracles, and Sorcerers.

They know that for a simple 2 level dip they can get +Charisma to all of their Saves. That is it. That is the ONLY reason people really want non-L/G Paladins.

They don't care about being a Paladin. They want those sweet, sweet, powers. That is it.

And that, to me, is reason enough to fight to keep them away from the Paladin.

Divine Grace never had a bloody thing to do with it.

Alright, I’m going to suggest a class right now.

Full BAB
Two good saves
4/9 spellcasting ability from a divine source
Enough class features to justify the XP the player spent on all those levels, mixed between martial ability and supernatural stuff derived from and inspired by their divine source (so no, not the Gray Paladin)
No need for devotion, no alignment restriction, no Ex-(this class) entry anywhere; a character of this class could, in theory, act against the source of his own power and still get spells and his other abilities

By the way, that’s the Ranger. AKA, the “Nature Paladin”. Sharing a large swath of what the LG Paladin gets to enjoy. Full BAB, full complement of class features despite not having a connection to that over-hyped Paladin spark. How is that not stepping all over the Paladin’s toes? And the Nature Paladin is on the very next page after the LG Paladin. One wonders how you could stomach Gygax’s baby being thusly snubbed for the past decade.

...

It’s not about Divine Grace and it’s frankly incredible to suggest otherwise. It’s about there being a plethora of sources of divine power out there, but for some reason, only three are able to rein it in just enough to give their servants some spellcasting while leaving them primarily warriors: the intersection of law and good (the LG Paladin), the intersection of chaos and evil (the Anti-Paladin), and nature (the Nature Paladin, AKA the Ranger).

We just want those options to expand to cover the other intersections, each alignment by itself, or being completely independent of alignment but still associated with something divine (you’re seriously telling me the mystery of Battle can grant an Oracle 9th level spellcasting but it can’t rein in its gifts just enough to leave their servant a full BAB?). While still being a full class, rather than a Warrior with two whole class features by 15th level (yay?) or whatever the Gray Paladin was supposed to be (also underwhelming).

And while Divine Grace is in no way a requirement, whatever would exist in its place (assuming P2E Paladins would even have this ability that, somehow, was apparently the One Punch Man of P1E class features) does need to be just as worthwhile.

The Ranger isn’t stepping on the Paladin’s toes. Neither would a Champion or a Holy Warrior or a Core Rulebook Class Ability Set #8 (hereafter referred to as a Not-Paladin MagiKnight).

And had the Warpriest been full BAB with 4/9 spellcasting, it would still fill its specific role, it would still not step on the Paladin’s toes, and it would have been a better representation of what we were looking for, anyway.

If you were able to stomach the Warpriest and the Ranger in P1E, you can get behind letting other players play the Paladin they want to play the way they want to play them.


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Nox Aeterna wrote:
Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
Bloodrealm wrote:
Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
gustavo iglesias wrote:

fun part is that actually having diferent kinds of paladins, such as 5e Devotion, Ancients and Vengeance paladins,

You understand in 5e they can be any alignment, right?
5E has no Paladins. They have "thing that isn't me hunters". They're specialized in fighting creature types, not Evil.

Looks at PHB, reads the Paladin entry

I think I can say for fact 5e has Paladins.

Let's make no mistake calling something a "paladin" doesn't a paladin makes.

You can create a CE class and call it a paladin. There. That doesn't mean it has anything to do with the PF1 paladin.

This is what people are discussing here.

A warpriest isn't a paladin, but hey it can be LG... so they are now the same clearly.

Paladin does involve a certain lore in PF that lore involves it's restrictions, and yes, we all have ever ideas to how to change an "improve" them, but at a certain point there is no value in keeping the paladin name anymore.

Core Paladin Cause Description wrote:

A paladin swears to uphold justice and righteousness, to stand with the good things of the world against the encroaching darkness, and to hunt the forces of evil wherever they lurk. Different paladins focus on various aspects of the cause of righteousness, but all are bound by the oaths that grant them power to do their sacred work. Although many paladins are devoted to gods of good, a paladin’s power comes as much from a commitment to justice itself as it does from a god.

Paladins train for years to learn the skills of combat, mastering a variety of weapons and armor. Even so, their martial skills are secondary to the magical power they wield: power to heal the sick and injured, to smite the wicked and the undead, and to protect the innocent and those who join them in the fight for justice.

Is that not a Paladin to you? What's different about it?

Or even an Oath for comparison:
Oath of Devotion Tenets wrote:


•Honesty: Don't lie or cheat. Let your word be your promise.
•Courage: Never fear to act, though caution is wise.
•Compassion: Aid others, protect the weak, and punish those who threaten them. Show mercy to your foes but temper it with wisdom.
•Honor: Treat others with fairness, and let your honorable deeds be an example to them. Do as much good as possible while causing the least amount of harm.
•Duty: Be responsible for your actions and their consequences, protect those entrusted to your care, and obey those who have just authority over you.

Yeah, what were we thinking? 5E sounds nothing like prior Paladins...

/smh


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HWalsh wrote:
Xerres wrote:

I have to say, that the prime reason I'd want to open the Paladin to other alignments is that I despise the elitism that people attach to the old idea.

"Not only am I Good, I'm the MOST Good. That Barbarian who champions everything that I do without my Code to guide them? Bah! A mere pretender, no where near my purity of soul. Chaotic Good? More like 'Decided not to be Evil today'! Those lesser Heroes know nothing of my incredible valor and my boundless humility! It is I, Lawful Good Paladin Man, who am the ultimate bastion of righteousness!"

And just wanting that to be enforced by the rules. So that anyone playing the game, whether they will ever interact with the "Keep em Lawful!" players or not, is 'forced' to acknowledge that Lawful Good Is Best Good.

I frankly find that sort of elitism completely goes in the face of everything a Paladin should stand for. Paladins are my favorite class, and I love Lawful Good more than every other alignment, but if this notion of "Paladins are the Greatest Good, an ELITE CLASS of Hero!" was brought up to one of my Paladins their response would be legendary! (Involving sitting down with whoever said that, and explaining that nothing about them elevates them above any other man, woman, or child. True Heroism is a choice that anyone can make, and to see those choices made every day is what inspires the Paladins I play to do their best too.)

So I want to burn those alignment restrictions to the ground, because I HATE the idea that only Lawful Good characters can be such champions! No! No, no, no, no, no! True Paladins would champion the idea that ALL people can make that choice to be a Hero, and they would be inspired by each and every person that made that choice.

That true humility, that's something I don't think the Old Paradigm being pushed can accept. That they aren't Special Warriors that are Better Than Everyone Else. But its something I dearly want, for my Lawful Good Paladins to welcome Neutral Good and Chaotic Good champions to...

Okay, hold on, this is a red herring.

Nobody here, not even myself, said that Lawful Good is the best good.

Neither did Xerres. Stop straw manning.

He's clearly pointing out that the *Paladin* is the "elite, greatest good" problem. Not the LG alignment.
The very fact that the powers of Law and Good bestowed abilities to Person A (the Paladin) and not Person B (the LG Fighter that lives by an identical code) by definition means that Person A is "more good" than Person B; after all, if Person B were as good, they'd have Paladin abilities too, right?
That's the elitism he's speaking of. At no point was this about the LG alignment itself.


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I agree with removing the LG requirement for Paladins (let's chuck alignment altogether). All it does is pigeon-hole Paladins unnecessarily. If someone want to play the classic Paladin, all they need to do is play a LG Paladin and we can have holy warriors of all alignments, which would be so much better. The people who liked the old way can still have what they had, and those that didn't like the way it was can get something new and different.

Also, why do Druids have to be these weird agents of nature? Let's remove the nature-focus of the class, all it does is pigeon-hole Druids unnecessarily. If someone wants to play the classic Druid, they can just roleplay a nature-focused Druid and we can also have full-plate wearing agents of civilization, urbanization, and advancement of technology, which would be so much better. The people who liked the old way can still have what they had, and those that didn't like the way it was can get something new and different.

Also, why do Clerics have to be healers? Let's remove healing spells and abilities from their spell lists and class features, all it does is pigeon-hole Clerics unnecessarily. If someone wants to play the classic Cleric, they can invest in UMD and use wands, and we can have non-healing Clerics, which would be so much better. The people who liked the old way can still have what they had, and those that didn't like the way it was can get something new and different.

Also, why do wizards have to be spellcasters? Let's remove spellcasting from wizards.


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TheFlyingPhoton everything you just mentioned already exists in 1e:

Gorumite Druids can wear fullplate, and both Blight and Urban Druid Archetypes exist.

Clerics were never required to be healers; you see, they can channel both positive and negative energy.

The Alchemist class is a Wizard who doesn't cast spells and uses bombs to blast foes instead of to fireball spells.


And there are Paladin archetypes that remove the alignment restriction. I'm saying let's make those things that are currently the alternatives into the standard.


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And we are saying the Gray Paladin is a terrible Archetype that is objectively worse than the base Paladin, and maybe Paladin shouldn't have exclusive rights to the Divine Full BAB Warrior party.

We are not suggesting Paladins lose their LG restriction - only that their toys are shared.


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Diminuendo wrote:


We are not suggesting paladins lose their LG restriction

Umm, some of us are suggesting this very thing.


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Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
Umm, some of us are suggesting this very thing.

Correction; my original post did not suggest Paladins lose their LG restriction.


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HWalsh wrote:
gustavo iglesias wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
If you are allowed to play the Paladin "how you want to" it cheapens the lore behind the Paladin and thus it stops me from playing the class that I want to play.

Ok. Now ask me if I care.

Ut is up to you, buddy. Nobody FORCES you to take that decision. You do because you want. You can do whatever you want with the characters you want to play, because you are the supreme authority in your choices. You can't do that for the whole table, because you are not yhe supreme authority for my choices.

This is like going vegan. You don't like meat, don't eat it. I don't mind if you do. But don't tell me I can't like meat.

That is a bad analogy of the situation.

The fact is this... If you are telling me, outright, you don't care about how I feel regarding the class... Then why should I care, at all, about how you want to play the class.

You're trying to take something away from me by making Paladin "just a class" like any other.

I'm not taking something from you, because you never had Alignment free Paladins in Pathfinder.

You want to take the uniqueness of the class away, and I can tell you, I'll fight you until the last breath in my body.

that's just it, it is just a class, a class that anyone should be able to play however they want, don't want them to be just a class go read a book about paladins that have nothing to do with a game where one plays a character who takes levels in a class


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DrDeth wrote:
karlbadmannersV2 wrote:
I see absolutely no reason Paladin cannot *EVOLVE* to being multiple alignments. It's silly to hold onto the "LG ONLY!" notion

Why is it "silly"? Look, no one has a big issue with Monks being Lawful, right?

There are plenty of ways to make a non-LG holy warrior- The Inquisitor comes to mind, as well as several others.

Leave the LG Paladin alone- why CAN'T it be just LG?

I have a problem with monks being lawful only same problem with me not being able to have lawful barbarians, same issue with not being able to have non lawful good paladins

Dark Archive

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I actually like the 5th edition D&D version of paladins where they have codes or orders but they don't have to be lawful, or evil. (Assuming we don't get rid of alignment.)

Now in BECMI D&D, you couldn't become a paladin until level 9. In 3rd edition D&D you had the prestige paladin from Unearthed Arcana. I see no reason not to turn the paladin into a prestige class, but I don't see a good reason why it should be a prestige class. Except maybe for roleplaying being "called", but you could do that by multiclassing. (Assuming we don't get rid of multiclassing.)

As for a "calling", I don't see why non-lawful, non-good deities wouldn't call their own representatives of their cause, but I guess clerics and inquisitors can be called too. Still, it seems like a weird power vacuum. (Assuming we don't get rid of deities.)

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