So, Yesterday there was a wonderful little "Drow prisoner wat do" type thread. Not that all such threads were wonderful, but there were a few highlights. The God-Emperor himself showed up and began a tale of Naive drow and terrified young men. There were many disputes over whether or not it was OK to be lewd to bashful drow maids, with surprisingly good imagery pertaining to it. I myself took up the mantle of an old Knight, bickering on the topic of the morality of committing genocide on their entire race with another anon who, I admit, was a highly competitive opponent.I tell these things for the thread was deleted, and I can only view the first half. /tg/, bring me your tales of glory, of adventure, of two angry knights fighting with silly proverbs, and naive drow maids seeing the world for the first time. BRING ME A CHAMPION /TG/
Hail fellow, glad ta see you enjoyed our little chat as much as I!
I hope to hear from others aswell today: if I manage to make time, I'll post something myself perchance.
Our conversation got me thinking, you know.
About paladins and how they should be the chosen champion of the god they serve: wouldn't it be natural for them to be sort of prophets aswell? Hearing the will of their god and carrying out their will.
That is, of course, if the paladin serves a god rather than an ideology in a setting.
That's why I prefer the ideological ones. Having a prophetic paladin doesn't make as much sense as a prophetic cleric, but it's like comparing priests to old grannies. Priests might read his messages and divine god's will, but grannies have him on quick-dial!
The paladins who follow an ideal, where do they get their powers from? Does their own willpower surface and give them the abilities they use in the name of their ideal? So as long as they hold on to their convictions they get to keep their powers, right? Wouldn't that prevent them falling completely, unless they actively choose not to do good anymore, just like a paladin would fall when he decides to do his own thing instead of obeying the orders of his god?
Paladins are incredible sources of plot, I'm sure. But if you play a paladin or cleric who follows his own idea, doesn't that take away some manner of control from the GM? Since.. you know, you can argue that killing the women and children of an enemy orc village is good, in the eyes of your paladin... but the GM can say that the village repopulated after a few years and the orcs resumed raiding and eventually overwhelmed and slaughtered all the innocent people of the villaage neighbours, making the paladin objectively evil, in that case, because he didn't prevent it when he could. Yet the GM can't say the paladin fell, because he's still following his own code and set of ideas, no?
but... that's... that's a good thing. Why would you actively try to make your paladins fall?? As a DM there's a few basic rules. 1st is "make sure everyone is included and enjoying themselves" As a DM you don't need that power. Just as you can't take a Wizard's magic away, or a monk's fists, why should you be able to take away a paladin's power? Sure, he can fall, but look at it this way. If a paladin is following his god, it doesn't mean he's doing good, as the tenets of his faith may allow for the wholesale slaughter of villages, orc, elf or otherwise, as long as they aren't human. A Paladin who follows his own ideology might do the same. But let's take your case, that the Paladin unknowingly causes evil: That doesn't cause him to fall, as he was not aware that he was doing wrong. While in the court of law, this would be the offence of gross negligence, it would still be up for debate of whether or not it was foreseeable, and if it was not, then it is of no fault on the part of the perpetrator. Another way to look at it is this. It might be objectively evil to allow the slaughter to happen, but it would have been far more evil had the paladin killed the orcs, instead of peacefully resolving the conflict. One evil never justifies another. In the end, the paladin falls in two cases: He is aware that the slaughter will happen, and does nothing to prevent it, or he slaughters the orc village on nothing but prejudice, with the exception of his faith allowing the slaughter of these people. The same conflict is there ideologically. But I wander from the point. The only times you should have your paladins fall is when your players completely break character, and intentionally break their tenets, of faith or ideals, or when the player wants their paladin to fall and have discussed it with you.
>Why would you actively try to make your paladins fall??
Don't get me wrong, please: I am not such a person. I don't have the GMvsPlayer mentality and I would never want to take away anyone's fun.
>The only times you should have your paladins fall is when your players completely break character, and intentionally break their tenets, of faith or ideals, or when the player wants their paladin to fall and have discussed it with you.
I completely agree with this sentiment.
Please allow me to explain my idea: I really like the Paladin, because he is supposedly the one character that is most in touch with the bigger scheme of things. I really enjoy settings where good vs evil is an overlaying thing going on: because I like it so much, I always envision the gods of good in a long-lasting strategy game against the gods of evil. Both move their pieces in due time, with a strategy that will eventually lead to one side being victorious. As such they will have moves that seem inexplicable right now, but will affect the outcome of the "game" where the fate of the world is at stake.
Because of this, I have this feeling of the ideological paladins being... short-sighted, if you'll allow me saying so. They might do good in the short term, but bad in the long run.
It's not to belittle ideological paladins or anything, it's just my personal preference. Of course, this kind of idea would be ill-suited for an Exalted game, since it's humans ascending to godhood, taking the "game" into their own hands: it's only really possible for moderate-power games.
I see... An interesting idea. Perhaps I have played too many JRPGs, or fought too many deities in campaigns, but I have a tendency to see it the other way around, with paladins aligned to a god following the god's rules to the letter, allowing too much or too little lee-way for a situation, inevitably leading to corruption in their ranks, and despicable acts by loophole, Whereas the ideological kind are bound to their code of duty. Both can do wrong, but the ideological kind are more flexible. Again, just the flavour I prefer.
>Again, just the flavour I prefer.
I think that we agree to disagree, as in that our opinions differ but that is okay: variety is the spice of life after all!
I also think trying out a setting such as you say would be very interesting. It's a shame I'm too busy to play right now.
Anywho: thank you for reading through my rambling, I've digressed a bit much. But now I understand your point of view a little better, so for me it has been a good exchange of ideas!