Is the behaviour of Champions (Paladins) more restricted than ever?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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Shadow Lodge

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Puna'chong wrote:
demon321x2 wrote:
If a bad guy asks "What are you going to do about it?" you can't respond because saying "I'm going to beat your face in." sounds a lot like a threat and coercion even though that's exactly what you are going to do.

"Is that a threat?"

"It's a promise."

"You are free to make that choice, but you should make it with the full awareness of the consequences of that action."

Grand Lodge

demon321x2 wrote:
If a bad guy asks "What are you going to do about it?" you can't respond because saying "I'm going to beat your face in." sounds a lot like a threat and coercion even though that's exactly what you are going to do.

You absolutely can if the reason you told them to do something (presumably stop being bad) is because they are actively inflicting pain or suffering against another being (presumably an innocent). In that case, the tenets would allow you to defend the victim, but its because of their actions, not their ideals (presumably evil).

OTOH, if its just a matter to two keyboard warriors arguing over social media, the champion would not be able to threaten (or worse) the other one with violence just because he doesn't like his language.


I just straight removed the god part of the champion class at my table, so god anathema aren't an issue for my group.


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That's the whole point of the class...


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Guntermench wrote:
That's the whole point of the class...

Some people really hate the baked in RP and constraints of the class.

But I agree with you that removing that part to me waters down the class and I would rather remove the class than remove that part.

Verdant Wheel

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"The Duke of Thunder doesn't appreciate mealy-mouthed liars who aren't honest to other people about what they really think of a person. That, and don't insult Him, His wife, or me seems an easy 'ask' for representing Him."


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TOZ wrote:
Puna'chong wrote:
demon321x2 wrote:
If a bad guy asks "What are you going to do about it?" you can't respond because saying "I'm going to beat your face in." sounds a lot like a threat and coercion even though that's exactly what you are going to do.

"Is that a threat?"

"It's a promise."

"You are free to make that choice, but you should make it with the full awareness of the consequences of that action."

"You may test that assumption at your convenience."

(There really should be a skill feat for using Diplomacy to Coerce...)


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Staffan Johansson wrote:
(There really should be a skill feat for using Diplomacy to Coerce...)

Key Ability

Key Ability wrote:
If the GM deems it appropriate for a certain situation, however, they might have you use a different ability modifier for a skill check or when determining your skill DC.

Not quite what you are looking for, but it is close.


I wasn't willing to champion a cause I'd probably play a fighter with the blessed one archetype.

Envoy's Alliance

WWHsmackdown wrote:
I wasn't willing to champion a cause I'd probably play a fighter with the blessed one archetype.

"I don't know about a fighter, but I've got some drunken bird and a weird sword I'm trying to get back to some angry drunken yet apologetic bird-person. Somehow picked up the knack for healing with lightning and don't ask me *how* that even works."


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My older daughter plays a tailed goblin champion Tikti with detective background and liberator cause in my PF2-converted Ironfang Invasion campaign. The character does not feel restricted.

Arachnofiend wrote:
Albatoonoe wrote:
I am also playing a Liberator. He follows Kurgess and it has generally not been difficult to play. I had a personality that I wanted to play and picked the deity to fit that.
Golarion's pantheon is so large you can decide what you want your character to believe in first and then find a deity to match it afterwards. There's probably an Empyreal Lord somewhere for whatever weirdly specific questionably good thing you want your character to be about.

That is what my daughter did. She searched through the gods and selected Grandmother Spider. Her champion Tikti trained in Crafting in order to repair her shield and with thoughts of making magic items. By selected a crafting god, she justified that repairing her shield would function as a Refocus activity, doing two things at once during a 10-minute rest.

Grandmother Spider's Edicts are be skilled and clever, think for yourself, take due payment for your work, humiliate the powerful. The party outwits the powerful Ironfang Legion regularly with clever tactics. Tikti is built for defense rather than offense, and that gives her a unique role in the tactics. The team has no leader; instead, the PCs suggest ideas and quickly decide on the best. Due payment is a bit of a quandary, since the party aids refugees for free, but technically the party members are also refugees, so they are aiding themselves, too. A fair share of the loot feels enough to satisfy the edict.

Grandmother Spider's Anathema are abuse someone you have power over, harm someone who has given you sincere kindness, let a slight go unanswered, own a slave. Abuse and harm require deliberate actions, so they are easy to avoid. The party is freeing the slaves of the Ironfang Legion. The anathema about slights has come up, since some foes insult the party. Tikti answers these slights by fighting the foe or aiding a party member against the foe.


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It's alot easier when you start playing than theorycraft the restrictions. It might not work sometimes, but most of the time, it will work. Like a Cayden champion crying over spilled ale, trying to save as much as possible, then if the one who spilled your ale is acting like a bully, you know that is his choice, so you punch him and the tavern brawl follows...

Champions are alot of fun and full of flavour
Fighters are blank canvases to be painted by its creator

Thank god this is a roleplaying game and not a combat simulator


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I would say it's more robotic than before, not so much restrictive, which is different. The code of conduct hasn't really changed in Paizo's eyes (except for poisons, but that's such a minor change that it's borderline non-sequitur), but given a set of priorities, not unlike Asimov's Laws of Robotics that have "laws" which precede one another, but have their own intrinsic value.

Does that make it better? Kind of. You're having far less fatal errors resulting in crashes, AKA "gotcha" GMs imposing their shenanigans on players, which is a net gain for the consumers. Otherwise, not really.

Is it more fluid than before? Not particularly, it's less free-form and open to interpretation compared to previous editions, but the previous editions have proven that a less-codified anathema creates more problems than one given priorities, meaning this might be more preferred.

Does that mean it's a straight-jacket for players to roleplay or participate? Not any more than previous editions. In fact, there is still wiggle room for certain codes in regards to their intent and application, so players can play up or work around those things, and it can still create awesome roleplaying moments.


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Guntermench wrote:
That's the whole point of the class...

I disagree, given it wasn't the point of the class in 3e, PF1 (outside of PFS), or 5e.

I just see no reason to reduce the valid concepts of paladins in 2e.

Liberty's Edge

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Milo v3 wrote:
Guntermench wrote:
That's the whole point of the class...

I disagree, given it wasn't the point of the class in 3e, PF1 (outside of PFS), or 5e.

I just see no reason to reduce the valid concepts of paladins in 2e.

Well, the PF2 Champion is indeed all about the deity (except the weird thing about your reaction depending on your alignment rather than that of your deity, which is a legacy from the old Paladin).

We might not like it, but currently it is what it is, and consistent with the way Golarion has always depicted both Paladins and Clerics.


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The Raven Black wrote:

Well, the PF2 Champion is indeed all about the deity (except the weird thing about your reaction depending on your alignment rather than that of your deity, which is a legacy from the old Paladin).

We might not like it, but currently it is what it is, and consistent with the way Golarion has always depicted both Paladins and Clerics.

It probably wouldn't be too difficult to uproot Champions from having to represent deities. Off the top of my head:

1. Remove Deific Weapon and the Deity part of Deity and Cause.

2. Change the deity skill into a generic skill.

3. Change the Deity's Domain feat to Divine Champion, add Deific Weapon into it and make it add the deity's edicts and anathema. Make being proficient in the deity's skill a prerequisite.

That gives you a Champion that's primarily alignment based but with the option to serve a deity over principles. It would also open up some design space among the causes for more interesting things like 5e's Oaths.


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Milo v3 wrote:
Guntermench wrote:
That's the whole point of the class...

I disagree, given it wasn't the point of the class in 3e, PF1 (outside of PFS), or 5e.

I just see no reason to reduce the valid concepts of paladins in 2e.

Except the 2e Champion is none of those things.

Champion wrote:
You are an emissary of a deity, a devoted servant who has taken up a weighty mantle, and you adhere to a code that holds you apart from those around you.

It's literally the first sentence of the Champion section.

Liberty's Edge

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This just in: Man devoted in life and soul to a deity suddenly bewildered by the need to follow the scripture governing their faith! More on this developing story at 11!

SuprisedPicachuFace.jpg


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
The Raven Black wrote:


Well, the PF2 Champion is indeed all about the deity

Well I mean, thematically kind of, but mechanically the only real connection to their deity is a trained skill at level 1 and a die size boost to their favored weapon if it's simple or unarmed.

That's honestly pretty minor.

Liberty's Edge

Squiggit wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:


Well, the PF2 Champion is indeed all about the deity

Well I mean, thematically kind of, but mechanically the only real connection to their deity is a trained skill at level 1 and a die size boost to their favored weapon if it's simple or unarmed.

That's honestly pretty minor.

Well, I do count the anathema as part of the mechanics, because of the very big impact they can have on the Champion's abilities ;-)


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
cavernshark wrote:


I originally planned to invest heavily in intimidation to use demoralize as a third action on my Liberator (sweet summer child I was thinking I'd have a third action while trying to raise a shield, but whatever...) and then noticed that coercion would probably run foul of anathema for a Liberator. So I swapped that and have instead emphasized diplomacy. It's been an interesting challenge any time I want to threaten an NPC into compliance; I have to come up with a compelling argument instead. It's far from unplayable and brings a lot of life to the character for me.

I would strongly argue there are plenty of ways the Demoralize combat action doesn't have any conflict with the liberator code. It can be screaming at a foe to startle them, boasting about what you're about to do, putting down the opponent's skills so that they doubt themselves. That action's use of the skill is just about momentarily shaking someone off their game.

Intimidate is just a skill: Coercion and Demoralize are explicitly named and called out as two different ways it could be used.

That said, I quite like the current implementation of champions. All three codes have real but distinct limitations, which makes the holy warriors of different gods really seem to approach things differently from each other


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When ditching it takes a second of effort and doesn't really change anything... It's not actually a core element imo. Removing it both creates a more focused class at my table and means that players don't have to deal with as many anathema at once. Since then you only have to deal with the code.

I did consider only using the code, but there isn't anything especially to represent your connection to your god over a paladin to any other god so decided against trying to force it into being a god-tied class.

I also couldn't care less if of matches golarion since I don't play golarion (and that wasn't actually how they worked in most of 1e golarion, they are even direct quotes from James Jacobs about how only clerics required gods worship).

Silver Crusade

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You may think it “doesn’t really change anything” but in actuality that’s not true, the Code/Anathema is a big part of Champion.

Removing or ignoring that is a major change.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Major change? TBH (and from actual experience with similar issues) I'm not sure most people would even notice the difference between a Liberator of Sarenrae and a hypothetical generic Liberator without specifically asking, much less that it makes the class fundamentally different (or as others have suggested, leaves the class so severely altered that you might as well simply remove champions from the game).

It's something clearly very important to Paizo and as a result a major feature of Golarion, which is completely fair and reasonable obviously, but it's a relatively minor homebrew to do away with too. The intensely visceral reaction to the suggestion some people might want to make that change in their own games seems a bit much.

Silver Crusade

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“You can ignore it” doesn’t make it not be a major change.

You can change it however you want in your home games, no one cares. Saying it’s not an issue and should be applied to all games is what people are pushing back against it.


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You're gonna need a pretty big justification for the power source of a champion that's working without a deity. The reactions alone are beyond what a mortal is doing solo, especially a mortal that's working with a lot of martial might.


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Rysky wrote:

“You can ignore it” doesn’t make it not be a major change.

You can change it however you want in your home games, no one cares. Saying it’s not an issue and should be applied to all games is what people are pushing back against it.

No one said it should be applied to all games. I said why I did it for my home games.

Quote:
You're gonna need a pretty big justification for the power source of a champion that's working without a deity

No more than Oracle does. It even worked the exact same as oracle did back in 1e and 3.5e. Back then, a paladins power comes from good, or gods of good. So It'd be the same as that, just not limited to good.

Not worshipping a god does not make all divine power invalid to you.

Liberty's Edge

Milo v3 wrote:

When ditching it takes a second of effort and doesn't really change anything... It's not actually a core element imo. Removing it both creates a more focused class at my table and means that players don't have to deal with as many anathema at once. Since then you only have to deal with the code.

I did consider only using the code, but there isn't anything especially to represent your connection to your god over a paladin to any other god so decided against trying to force it into being a god-tied class.

I also couldn't care less if of matches golarion since I don't play golarion (and that wasn't actually how they worked in most of 1e golarion, they are even direct quotes from James Jacobs about how only clerics required gods worship).

I would be interested to see the JJ quotes to that effect. I clearly remember him stating that Clerics and only Clerics had to be exclusive in their faith (ie cannot worship several deities) but that is not the same as Paladins not having to worship a deity.

Liberty's Edge

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Squiggit wrote:

Major change? TBH (and from actual experience with similar issues) I'm not sure most people would even notice the difference between a Liberator of Sarenrae and a hypothetical generic Liberator without specifically asking, much less that it makes the class fundamentally different (or as others have suggested, leaves the class so severely altered that you might as well simply remove champions from the game).

It's something clearly very important to Paizo and as a result a major feature of Golarion, which is completely fair and reasonable obviously, but it's a relatively minor homebrew to do away with too. The intensely visceral reaction to the suggestion some people might want to make that change in their own games seems a bit much.

What I am wondering is what is the holy warrior of a deity if it is not a Champion? Fighter with MC Cleric?

Also, deities' codes are really varied and they come first for Champions. I think erasing them makes Champions of the same alignment blander and less varied. Not more.


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Milo v3 wrote:
Rysky wrote:

“You can ignore it” doesn’t make it not be a major change.

You can change it however you want in your home games, no one cares. Saying it’s not an issue and should be applied to all games is what people are pushing back against it.

No one said it should be applied to all games. I said why I did it for my home games.

Quote:
You're gonna need a pretty big justification for the power source of a champion that's working without a deity

No more than Oracle does. It even worked the exact same as oracle did back in 1e and 3.5e. Back then, a paladins power comes from good, or gods of good. So It'd be the same as that, just not limited to good.

Not worshipping a god does not make all divine power invalid to you.

Oracles are a bit different though, since their divine power is more of a side-effect of their curse (which may or may not be Deity-bound) than it is a simple matter of having actual raw divinity to them like a Deity would. As without that curse, they are no different than any Commoner class on the city streets. It's not like they are worshippers granted their power like Clerics, or studied practitioners of divinity like some Witches are, or even inherently born with the power like Sorcerers can be.

That being said, I do agree that divine power being limited to worshippers is fallacious, since that means even the Gods who grant the divine power have to be a worshipper of another, greater God to get their power, which then has to be a worshipper of another, greater God, and so on and so forth until you reach a source that somehow grants it autonomously. Can't mortals also cut out Deities, whom seem to act like middlemen to Divinity in this case, and just go straight to the source in some fashion?


The Raven Black wrote:
Squiggit wrote:

Major change? TBH (and from actual experience with similar issues) I'm not sure most people would even notice the difference between a Liberator of Sarenrae and a hypothetical generic Liberator without specifically asking, much less that it makes the class fundamentally different (or as others have suggested, leaves the class so severely altered that you might as well simply remove champions from the game).

It's something clearly very important to Paizo and as a result a major feature of Golarion, which is completely fair and reasonable obviously, but it's a relatively minor homebrew to do away with too. The intensely visceral reaction to the suggestion some people might want to make that change in their own games seems a bit much.

What I am wondering is what is the holy warrior of a deity if it is not a Champion? Fighter with MC Cleric?

Also, deities' codes are really varied and they come first for Champions. I think erasing them makes Champions of the same alignment blander and less varied. Not more.

I would technically go with MC Oracle, MC Divine Sorcerer, or even MC Divine Witch, depending on preference, since even MC Cleric still adheres to anathema and requires Deities, which defeats the entire point of a Deity-less divine being. In fact, the Fighter in one of our groups did exactly this, even though he technically worships a "deity." That "deity" is actually destroyed, shattered across the entirety of Golarion in the form of lesser creatures of its form.

You can still technically have those same flavor of champions that have those very same deity values, but not have it be tied to deities specifically, which is really what that discussion is about: cutting out deities from the equation entirely. It's actually more of a straight-jacket than if it wasn't included in the first place, since you might have players that simply don't want to be outright tied to deity values, or might have values that a published deity simply doesn't promote.


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
That being said, I do agree that divine power being limited to worshippers is fallacious, since that means even the Gods who grant the divine power have to be a worshipper of another, greater God to get their power, which then has to be a worshipper of another, greater God, and so on and so forth until you reach a source that somehow grants it autonomously.

What?


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Guntermench wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
That being said, I do agree that divine power being limited to worshippers is fallacious, since that means even the Gods who grant the divine power have to be a worshipper of another, greater God to get their power, which then has to be a worshipper of another, greater God, and so on and so forth until you reach a source that somehow grants it autonomously.
What?

It's a bit of a tongue-in-cheek argument behind Divine's real world definition creating an infinite loop to an undefined original source, which ultimately proves that you can have Divine power from nothing at all. The whole "can't get something from nothing" counterargument.


Ah.


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HyperMissingno wrote:
You're gonna need a pretty big justification for the power source of a champion that's working without a deity. The reactions alone are beyond what a mortal is doing solo, especially a mortal that's working with a lot of martial might.

The crux of the matter I think is that while these things are very important to the Champion's fluff they are largely irrelevant to the mechanics. You can't extricate alignment from the Champion because the Champion's alignment determines what your reaction is and a whole bunch of other stuff. The deity, on the other hand, mostly just determines some optional things that you can ignore without having to modify the mechanics of the Champion much at all. Compare again to the Cleric, who's deity determines spell access to a major degree.


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I mean...Cleric doesn't take that much work to yank out the deity part from its mechanics either. Just have them pick a weapon, pick a skill, pick 3 spells (one at 1st level) and pick 4 domains. If all you want is mechanics and not flavor then godless cleric is not only operational but it's also optimal. Full control over your spells and weapon after all. You just don't see anyone advocating for it because it spits all over the thematics of the class.

Champion is the same way, mechanically easy to tear out the deity. It's just finding an uncommon weapon you want, a skill, and some domains if you want to spend some feats for them. Thematically it's a different story. That power doesn't come from nowhere and it certainly ain't something a Sorcerer or Oracle can produce with how neutered their weirdness is in PF2.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Arachnofiend wrote:
You can't extricate alignment from the Champion because the Champion's alignment determines what your reaction is and a whole bunch of other stuff. The deity, on the other hand, mostly just determines some optional things that you can ignore without having to modify the mechanics of the Champion much at all. Compare again to the Cleric, who's deity determines spell access to a major degree.

TBH, just letting the champion pick their reaction doesn't seem like it'd be so bad either. Arguably might be less disruptive, at least diegetically if not mechanically, than messing with the deity.


The Raven Black wrote:
I would be interested to see the JJ quotes to that effect. I clearly remember him stating that Clerics and only Clerics had to be exclusive in their faith (ie cannot worship several deities) but that is not the same as Paladins not having to worship a deity.

Here you go. To be clear, that was his view for 1e, but he also mentioned here and there throughout 1e that he wasn't a fan of the paladin class and how he thought they should change it more than they did back when making the core rulebook so I imagine PF2e's champion class having you worshipping a god more directly involved as better matching his preferences. I also believe that post predated warpriest's existence.

Quote:
Oracles are a bit different though, since their divine power is more of a side-effect of their curse (which may or may not be Deity-bound) than it is a simple matter of having actual raw divinity to them like a Deity would. As without that curse, they are no different than any Commoner class on the city streets. It's not like they are worshippers granted their power like Clerics, or studied practitioners of divinity like some Witches are, or even inherently born with the power like Sorcerers can be.

Oracles handle their divine power in a certain way, but it is not the only Possible way for a divine class to work that isn't based on worship. Gods did these exact things PF1e and 3.5e.


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Squiggit wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
You can't extricate alignment from the Champion because the Champion's alignment determines what your reaction is and a whole bunch of other stuff. The deity, on the other hand, mostly just determines some optional things that you can ignore without having to modify the mechanics of the Champion much at all. Compare again to the Cleric, who's deity determines spell access to a major degree.
TBH, just letting the champion pick their reaction doesn't seem like it'd be so bad either. Arguably might be less disruptive, at least diegetically if not mechanically, than messing with the deity.

Might not be an issue for everyone but it would feel a bit off to me if a CG Champion could command lesser mortals to kneel before her or else take evil damage. The reactions, for the most part, tie their mechanics pretty strongly to the flavor of the alignment they represent. The big exception there is the LG one, which I would imagine is what people are looking at when they want Champions unchained by alignment.


Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

I would say it's more robotic than before, not so much restrictive, which is different. The code of conduct hasn't really changed in Paizo's eyes (except for poisons, but that's such a minor change that it's borderline non-sequitur), but given a set of priorities, not unlike Asimov's Laws of Robotics that have "laws" which precede one another, but have their own intrinsic value.

Does that make it better? Kind of. You're having far less fatal errors resulting in crashes, AKA "gotcha" GMs imposing their shenanigans on players, which is a net gain for the consumers. Otherwise, not really.

Is it more fluid than before? Not particularly, it's less free-form and open to interpretation compared to previous editions, but the previous editions have proven that a less-codified anathema creates more problems than one given priorities, meaning this might be more preferred.

Does that mean it's a straight-jacket for players to roleplay or participate? Not any more than previous editions. In fact, there is still wiggle room for certain codes in regards to their intent and application, so players can play up or work around those things, and it can still create awesome roleplaying moments.

Source on paizo changing stances on poisons?


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Arachnofiend wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
You can't extricate alignment from the Champion because the Champion's alignment determines what your reaction is and a whole bunch of other stuff. The deity, on the other hand, mostly just determines some optional things that you can ignore without having to modify the mechanics of the Champion much at all. Compare again to the Cleric, who's deity determines spell access to a major degree.
TBH, just letting the champion pick their reaction doesn't seem like it'd be so bad either. Arguably might be less disruptive, at least diegetically if not mechanically, than messing with the deity.
Might not be an issue for everyone but it would feel a bit off to me if a CG Champion could command lesser mortals to kneel before her or else take evil damage. The reactions, for the most part, tie their mechanics pretty strongly to the flavor of the alignment they represent. The big exception there is the LG one, which I would imagine is what people are looking at when they want Champions unchained by alignment.

Oh yeah, the good/evil dichotomy might feel odd to mess with, but imo there's nothing particularly strange conceptually about a Lawful Good champion interested in redemption or a Chaotic Good champion dealing out divine retribution against her foes.


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Caralene wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

I would say it's more robotic than before, not so much restrictive, which is different. The code of conduct hasn't really changed in Paizo's eyes (except for poisons, but that's such a minor change that it's borderline non-sequitur), but given a set of priorities, not unlike Asimov's Laws of Robotics that have "laws" which precede one another, but have their own intrinsic value.

Does that make it better? Kind of. You're having far less fatal errors resulting in crashes, AKA "gotcha" GMs imposing their shenanigans on players, which is a net gain for the consumers. Otherwise, not really.

Is it more fluid than before? Not particularly, it's less free-form and open to interpretation compared to previous editions, but the previous editions have proven that a less-codified anathema creates more problems than one given priorities, meaning this might be more preferred.

Does that mean it's a straight-jacket for players to roleplay or participate? Not any more than previous editions. In fact, there is still wiggle room for certain codes in regards to their intent and application, so players can play up or work around those things, and it can still create awesome roleplaying moments.

Source on paizo changing stances on poisons?

It was a subtle change, but intentional.

The PF1 Code of Conduct for Paladins had the following text:

Code of Conduct (PF1) wrote:

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.

It expressly lists Poison as not being valid for use with Paladins.

Compare it with the Lawful Good Champion tenets:

Paladin Tenets wrote:

-You must never perform acts anathema to your deity or willingly commit an evil act, such as murder, torture, or the casting of an evil spell.

-You must never knowingly harm an innocent, or allow immediate harm to one through inaction when you know you could reasonably prevent it. This tenet doesn't force you to take action against possible harm to innocents at an indefinite time in the future, or to sacrifice your life to protect them.

-You must act with honor, never taking advantage of others, lying, or cheating.

-You must respect the lawful authority of legitimate leadership wherever you go, and follow its laws.

In this, Poison is not expressly listed, meaning unless it is anathema to your deity, or is used for murderous or torturous ends, it's perfectly legal for a Paladin to use Poison.

I know, absence isn't evidence, but I did dig up this old blog post with the Paladin Class playtest, wherein Mark Seifter expressly stated that Poison being prohibited by them was changed. For ease of reference:

Paladin Playtest Preview wrote:
So let's break down what's the same and what's different. We still have all the basic tenets of the paladin from Pathfinder First Edition, with one exception: we've removed poison from the tenet of acting with honor. While there are certainly dishonorable ways to use poison, poisoning a weapon and using it in an honorable combat that allows enhanced weaponry doesn't seem much different than lighting the weapon on fire. However, by ordering the tenets and allowing the paladin to prioritize the most important tenets in the event of a conflict, we've cut down on the no-win situations.

So, there you go. Proof that the absence was a deliberate change.


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Zoomba wrote:
cavernshark wrote:


I originally planned to invest heavily in intimidation to use demoralize as a third action on my Liberator (sweet summer child I was thinking I'd have a third action while trying to raise a shield, but whatever...) and then noticed that coercion would probably run foul of anathema for a Liberator. So I swapped that and have instead emphasized diplomacy. It's been an interesting challenge any time I want to threaten an NPC into compliance; I have to come up with a compelling argument instead. It's far from unplayable and brings a lot of life to the character for me.

I would strongly argue there are plenty of ways the Demoralize combat action doesn't have any conflict with the liberator code. It can be screaming at a foe to startle them, boasting about what you're about to do, putting down the opponent's skills so that they doubt themselves. That action's use of the skill is just about momentarily shaking someone off their game.

Intimidate is just a skill: Coercion and Demoralize are explicitly named and called out as two different ways it could be used.

That said, I quite like the current implementation of champions. All three codes have real but distinct limitations, which makes the holy warriors of different gods really seem to approach things differently from each other

Just going to chime back in quickly and note that I'm very aware they are different actions, and I agree that demoralize is relatively uncontroversial. But I don't personally like investing heavily in a skill you can only use part of, especially on a class with few skill trainings.

The point I was trying to make is that adapting your player behavior and character choices to deity edicts and anathema is hardly crippling in most cases and can also result in very satisfying gameplay in practice.


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Anyone else remember when people were predicting that Chaotic Good Paladins would ruin the game because they could do anything they wanted?


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The poison thing was always kind of weird, since "I'm going to use knockout darts, instead of indiscriminately killing everybody who stantds in my way" seems like a thing a Good person might want to do, but those same knockout darts were categorized as poison.

Liberty's Edge

Milo v3 wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I would be interested to see the JJ quotes to that effect. I clearly remember him stating that Clerics and only Clerics had to be exclusive in their faith (ie cannot worship several deities) but that is not the same as Paladins not having to worship a deity.
Here you go. To be clear, that was his view for 1e, but he also mentioned here and there throughout 1e that he wasn't a fan of the paladin class and how he thought they should change it more than they did back when making the core rulebook so I imagine PF2e's champion class having you worshipping a god more directly involved as better matching his preferences. I also believe that post predated warpriest's existence.

Thank you very much.

Liberty's Edge

PossibleCabbage wrote:
The poison thing was always kind of weird, since "I'm going to use knockout darts, instead of indiscriminately killing everybody who stantds in my way" seems like a thing a Good person might want to do, but those same knockout darts were categorized as poison.

Using poison was not Not Good. It was given as an example of not acting with honor (ie, Not Loyal).

Putting it in the code made, in this specific case, the average Paladin more Lawful than Good. With a definition of Lawful that considered poison always dishonorable to boot.

This did not fit the view the devs had for the new edition, so they erased it.

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