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 How do You Feel About Alignment?

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Tequila Sunrise
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PostSubject: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:41 pm

The JUST PLAY 4E thread recently gave me an idea about how to start a fun discussion. (Read: I'm here to stir up the shit, so read on at your own peril!)

Alignment is one of those topics that tends to provoke strong reactions; people tend to love it or hate it. What do you think about alignment? What place does it have in the game? Have you even thought about it since playing 4e?

Personally, it took me a very long time to work out why some gamers get so worked up over alignment. To this day, I've never witnessed or been part of a live alignment argument. I've hardly ever heard it discussed outside of 'net forums. And so, although I have nothing but derision for alignment restrictions, I always thought "What's the big deal? If your DM has weird ideas about alignment, just avoid classes like the paladin."

But at some point during one of the many alignment flame wars I've posted in, it dawned on me: DMs are taking the game's half-baked definitions at face value, and then trying to conform non-Disney-like characters to those definitions. I honestly don't know how it took me so long to figure out that other DMs don't just default to their own ethical sensibilities; maybe because Good and Evil are pretty clear to me, even in those hypothetical corner-case situations that inevitably come up in alignment debates.

In any case, I now have more of an understanding of why alignment pisses so many people off. And truth be told, I hardly think about alignment any more -- I don't even give my characters one. But there's a part of me that misses when alignment meant something. (Yeah, 4e has alignment, but I can write "Chaotic Carrot" on my character sheet for all it matters.)

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:51 pm

The Paladin needs his oath.... The paladin was the oath bound hero, the The Samson, the CuCulaine, the Lancelot, they had stories strongly influenced by a LOSS of power and occasionally sanity and for Christian one a measure of redemption. Those oaths often made even less sense than alignment, never cut your hair... dont eat dog... and so on.

Oaths were themselves things of magical potence.

I have ideas about how to make a "proper" paladin and alignment still isn't on my list.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:07 pm

Ha, I don't even include the Code in my paladin definition. I don't think such a specific theme should be unilaterally imposed on an entire class. If the Code is just fluff, that's one thing; but if it can cause a character lose a significant portion of his/her power, that sucks!

PS: Lancelot was a douche, not a paladin. Wink His son was a paladin though.

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:04 pm

I actually prefer the non-4e alignments. (lawful, neutral, chaotic crossed with good, neutral, and evil) They are more descriptive of how people actually act. The 4e alignments are too vague. Lawful evil and chaotic good especially make sense to me. Lawful evil is a wealthy business man, attorney, or old-school conservative politician. Chaotic good is a vocal PeTA member, an 'Occupy Wall Street' protester, or someone who does a lot of 'un-commissioned' (but otherwise harmless) street art.  

I also think that a divine character needs to role play the part of someone who worships who their character worships. ie: a cleric or paladin of Bahamut shouldn't be lying, cheating, stealing, or ignoring a cry for help. But, I do like how 4e made that something for players to RP themselves or ignore; rather than something that had actual rules attached to it. DR 10/good on tons of monster entries, for example. Alignment should matter to divine characters. You can't act selfish and evil and also worship Bahamut. Nor can you be kind and generous and worship Lolth. Alignment should just a role playing guide to everyone else, IMO. Again, though..These are my opinions, and the opinions of my players.

If I had a paladin PC who broke her oath, I'd punish that PC somehow; until the character made amends. Same with a cleric who didn't play his PC in any way thinking about the deity he said he was a cleric of. Hard to say what that punishment would be, as I've never had a PC do that. I'd probably talk to them about it. And, if I really had to, I'd take away powers until they atoned in game for their transgressions. But, I doubt I'd ever have to go that far as a DM...I don't play with strangers at cons, clubs, or stores.

PS: I like an 'ideal' game...So, even though I feel that many religious people in reality don't follow the alignments of their chosen deities, I expect D&D characters to do so. But, that's a whole other thing...A thing that might really piss off people, and doesn't belong on a D&D forum. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:26 pm

Here's a question. What do you guys think about 'true neutral'? Is that even possible, for a sentient being? Should it be called 'unaligned' instead? Or...is being unaligned just as impossible for a sentient being?
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:12 pm

Personally I always liked the alignment system from Warhammer Fantasy RP 1E. It was

Lawful --- Good --- Neutral --- Evil --- Chaotic

The unique part was most people you would meet would be considered 'Neutral' and indeed aside from Elves every PC started Neutral and could only move off of it by role playing it in game at the GMs discretion. Neutral was not like 3E D&D neutral though and much more like 4E's unaligned meaning the person in question while maybe trying to create a better world for themselves and those around them would nearly always act in their own best interests when it really mattered. The best part was that as you got out to the extremes (Law and Chaos) they were very rigidly defined - if you went Lawful you wanted complete order in every aspect of life and for that order to never change - more of a cultural stasis than a Rule of Law. Chaos was seen as the ultimate destroyer (and indeed the forces of chaos were primary antagonists in the default campaign world) as they wanted constant, never ending change. Change for the better or worse didn't matter in the least - change for changes' sake was the goal.

In play alignment was only seldom touched upon and never used as a kludge to make PCs behave in certain ways. They could see how terrible Chaos and Law were and decide for themselves in the end.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:22 pm

Tequila Sunrise wrote:

PS: Lancelot was a douche, not a paladin. ;)His son was a paladin though.
Fallen and Forgiven and full of miraculous events  only one such is even attributed to Galahad and even that one was originally Lancelots... ok It was Lwch LleanLleawg (Hibernous - the Irishman not actually french) or some variant when the Grail was the cauldron of life perhaps a pagan paladin not Xian Surprised.... If its not obvious - the cauldron was also symbolic of the womb.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.


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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:24 pm

Holy Bovine wrote:

In play alignment was only seldom touched upon and never used as a kludge to make PCs behave in certain ways.  They could see how terrible Chaos and Law were and decide for themselves in the end.
Most definitely thought of and implemented as a club by Gygax to wack on an unruly player.... it was part of his adversarial dming made mechanically manifest. Losing levels cause your character didn't match the dms alignment ideas... yippeee. The original character who inspired alignment was a thief... who was stealing from his own party.

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“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:33 am

I don't use alignment any more. I was actually happy that 4E pretty much removed the entire mechanical component of alignment from the game. I've disliked it for a long time because it seemed to be something put into the game to quantify role-playing. And those that read my posts know that I don't think there need to be rules to tell a player how their character should act. I feel that if a player wants a character to act a particular way, then they will make their character act that particular way. And they will do that regardless of what is in the "alignment" box on their character sheet.

And really, that's the problem, based upon my experience. In previous editions of the game, I cannot count the times that some player would want to play a particular class that had an alignment requirement (Paladin, Monk, Barbarian, whatever). And so they'd put down whatever alignment was required of them. Then, throughout the campaign, they would act however they wanted to act and then twist themselves through ridiculous "logic" to try to justify how summoning a demon in the middle of town was considered a "good act" and completely okay by their Lawful Good alignment. Not only that, there are an equal (if not greater) number of times where one player would do something and then another player (or the DM) would chime in and say "Your character is this alignment and they wouldn't do that action!" and the argument would ensue.

I found it cause more arguments and problems at the table that it ever solved. I've been in countless discussions of what constitutes a "good" or "evil" act. And what it means to be "lawful" or "chaotic". ...And any combination thereof... Alignment rules seemed to give every "rules lawyer" a sticking point to argue through the whole game session and it gave every "min-maxer" the mechanism to make some ridiculously gross class combinations.

Obviously I'm speaking from my own experience of playing D&D. But I will say that it has been since 1981 that I've experienced these issues. I would love to have had a more positive experience with the alignment rules, but alas I've been soured on the topic for decades!

Now there was a comment earlier that I do actually have an opinion on because it spoke of the only class that I ever felt worked properly. But that was likely only because it was more of a "lack of" alignment. That would be the True Neutral alignment.

I played several TN characters over the years (when I wasn't working behind the screen as the DM). And there were two basic ways I would do this. They both fit with what I felt was both the intend AND the letter of how alignment was written. But they were very different.

The first (and most common for me) was the "indifference" approach. With this view of TN, the character was relatively indifferent towards good and evil, law and chaos. These characters understood that laws and rules were there for a reason and as long as they weren't overly restrictive, they were probably just fine. And though they didn't approve of people running around stealing, murdering, and otherwise causing great harm to others; they also didn't feel the need to be constantly performing altruistic acts of random kindness to every individual they met. I liked this sort of character because it gave a lot of freedom to act in a manner that was appropriate to the situation at hand without being "hung up" on moral and ethical issues.

The other way I would play the TN alignment was the "balance keeper" character. This person felt that good and evil, law and chaos were balanced forces in the universe. But they had to be monitored and action taken to maintain the balance. So if there was too much "evil" around, actions that promoted "good" were in order. If there was too much "lawfulness" going on, more "chaotic" things needed to be done. One character in particular that I played was in a group of characters that were all good aligned. In fact, they were LG, NG, and CG respectively. So since there was a preponderance of "goodness", his actions tended towards "evil". It wasn't always blatant or overtly evil, but it was there. I recall a couple times where the party had captured an enemy from the fight with the intent of turning the enemy over to the authorities. My character figured this was being too nice (i.e. "good") and so he killed him right in front of the party during interrogation. His justification was "He was being a jerk" or "I don't trust that he was telling us the truth" and it would really irritate the rest of the party. But he felt he was "balancing out" the "goodness" and in some cases the "lawfulness" of the situation.

Anyway, overall, I'm not a fan of the alignment system.

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:16 am

I feel that alignment is best used ala-factions, where only outsiders are explicitly the embodiment of each alignment (whereas most other folks can operate within or even across the various alignment spectrum, so long as you don't commit acts that are so blatantly against the principles and values of said alignment that they would immediately renounce your association with them). So no matter how good or evil you're actions are, as long as you adhere to the principles of Law, you're fine as a Lawful person.

[ D&D 0E and Stormbringer, I feel, are the best representations of the alignment system as intended. ]

When you bring in the 9-point alignments, it becomes a lot more complicated -- especially when you're bringing in morality (as the unintended side effect of defining good and evil as your alignment) -- but if you treat alignment as factions rather than as moral guidelines, it's a little easier to handle cases like Paladins treading in the moral grey areas of roleplaying: instead of thinking, "this Paladin isn't doing something morally acceptable" and working from that point, I'd prefer thinking, "what does the factions of Order and Good require of its members/followers?", then if the action being taken isn't covered by these divine edicts, then morally grey or not it should be fine.

The reason why I like the 5-point alignment is that it takes the "moral compass" idea (unintentionally) established by the 9-point alignment system as well as the "faction" idea of the 3-point alignment system and makes a neat compromise for it all:

  • Lawful Good = Members of the faction of Good that also follow the edicts of Law
  • Good = Members of Good who may or may not adhere to the edicts of Law
  • Unaligned = Members of Law who will follow it blindly, members of Chaos who also follow it blindly, and those who simply avoid the alignment wars wholesale
  • Evil = Members of Evil who may or may not be bound by Law
  • Chaotic Evil = Members of Evil who also follow the edicts of Chaos

And if you observe the 9-point alignment system descriptions, you may notice that...

  • Lawful Good and Lawful Neutral are very, very similar
  • Lawful Evil and Neutral Evil don't have that much difference
  • Chaotic Good and Chaotic Neutral have very little difference as well

Which is why, for me, it really made a lot of sense to just merge it all into the 5-point alignment system.

My favorite "alignment" system though would have to be where the cosmic-level nature of alignment was brought to a more "real" level, as done in non-D&D systems Smile
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:27 am

I prefer to abandon any alignment system. 4e makes it easier because the mechanics attached are gone.
When I DM, my one advice to player: You are the "good guys". I expect you to act like it. Sometimes "good guys" have to do "bad things". If you do "bad tings" without "good" in mind, there will be real good guys pursuing you to the ends of the world.
I don't do evil campaigns, or even evil one shots. Just don't like them at all.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:28 am

seti wrote:
Here's a question. What do you guys think about 'true neutral'? Is that even possible, for a sentient being? Should it be called 'unaligned' instead? Or...is being unaligned just as impossible for a sentient being?
Not only is true neutrality possible, it's humanity's default alignment.

Of course, the way I define TN is as 'the average Joe.' He thinks of himself as a good person, and occasionally helps people when it's not too inconvenient; but he lacks the commitment to be truly altruistic. He might even take the shirt off his own back...for his close friends and family, but he turns a blind eye to the problems of everyone else. Additionally, he probably has a few minor prejudices and perhaps some callous tendencies anchoring him solidly to the baser end of neutrality.

He has a similar relationship with the Law-Chaos axis.

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:34 am

Garthanos wrote:
Tequila Sunrise wrote:

PS: Lancelot was a douche, not a paladin. ;)His son was a paladin though.
Fallen and Forgiven and full of miraculous events  only one such is even attributed to Galahad and even that one was originally Lancelots... ok It was Lwch LleanLleawg (Hibernous - the Irishman) or some variant when the Grail was the cauldron of life perhaps a pagan paladin not Xian Surprised.... If its not obvious - the cauldron was also symbolic of the womb.
Lancelot earned the moniker 'Knight of the Cart' by stealing a peasant's cart, and then murdering him when the man was like "Hey, you can't just take my cart!"

Lancelot gets all the press because he's a more interesting character than his son and because he's Sir Thomas Mallory's Mary Sue, but he's definitely not what most people think of when they think 'paladin.' Unless we attach 'anti-' to the word.

Garthanos wrote:
Holy Bovine wrote:

In play alignment was only seldom touched upon and never used as a kludge to make PCs behave in certain ways.  They could see how terrible Chaos and Law were and decide for themselves in the end.
Most definitely thought of and implemented as a club by Gygax to wack on an unruly player.... it was part of his adversarial dming made mechanically manifest. Losing levels  cause your character didn't match the dms alignment ideas... yippeee.   The original character who inspired alignment was a thief... who was stealing from his own party.
Wow, did not know this. Where did you hear this?

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:40 am

Holy Bovine wrote:
Lawful --- Good --- Neutral --- Evil --- Chaotic
This spectrum implies that Law is ideal, while Chaos is eviler than Evil. But from your description, it sounds like Law and Chaos are equally bad. So I'm confused; is WH alignment supposed to be a linear spectrum, where 'just left of center' is ideal? Or is it more like the 9-alignment system, where Law and Chaos are orthogonal to Good and Evil, and therefore unbiased toward them?

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:15 am

Tequila Sunrise wrote:
Garthanos wrote:
Tequila Sunrise wrote:

PS: Lancelot was a douche, not a paladin. ;)His son was a paladin though.
Fallen and Forgiven and full of miraculous events  only one such is even attributed to Galahad and even that one was originally Lancelots... ok It was Lwch LleanLleawg (Hibernous - the Irishman) or some variant when the Grail was the cauldron of life perhaps a pagan paladin not Xian Surprised.... If its not obvious - the cauldron was also symbolic of the womb.
Lancelot earned the moniker 'Knight of the Cart' by stealing a peasant's cart, and then murdering him when the man was like "Hey, you can't just take my cart!"
Was aware he went under cover in that story elaborating it into theft and murder sounds like somebody with an axe to grind (rather bizarre). He's a tough one to nail down in a number of ways.  That particular story was apparently abandoned before finishing by its author. (he may have resented the story being thrust upon him by his patroness - including its outright adulterous element)... which were lacking in earlier works such as the German Lanzelet. The significant elements of the mounting up a Cart which I was aware of was ... he was induced by circumstance and love of Gwenivere to operate in a style beneath his social standing and in so doing accomplish what Gawaine couldn't.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Lancelot the not so randomly murderous    Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:28 am

The translation/synopsis I just read includes no murder .. but rather a Dwarf who volunteers the Cart. IE his villainy at that point is riding like a peasant ;p

I did notice something else Lancelot is featured fighting armed and armored knights while himself unarmored in a number of versions including this one - I tend to lump him in with the independent combatants who do not rely on their gadgets along side Beowulf.

Something to remember most of the examples we read about.. are indeed about those broken oaths... that doesn't make them somehow not heroes who gained great power from oaths.

Prior to reading it I hadn't recognized the source of elements from "A Knights Tale", which has me appreciating that movie even more (the Lady tests her awesome knights loyalty by having him fight poorly)

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“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.


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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:19 pm

I guess alignment has all the subtlety of accusing a man of murder because he was willing to ride in a wagon.Hide 

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:19 pm

I'll spare this board the drawn out posts I've give other alignment threads, but I will ask the same question I always ask.

What can be achieved WITH alignment that cannot be achieved WITHOUT?
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:20 pm

Garthanos wrote:
I tend to lump him in with the independent combatants who do not rely on their gadgets along side Beowulf.
Beowulf has both a magic sword (Hrunting) and the magic of the dragon horn. Depending on which version of the tale you are following of course.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:47 pm

ToeSama wrote:
I'll spare this board the drawn out posts I've give other alignment threads, but I will ask the same question I always ask.

What can be achieved WITH alignment that cannot be achieved WITHOUT?
Mechanically speaking, you have a point.  When I first saw the alignment change in 4E, I questioned whether it was D&D anymore, I saw the 9-point alignment as a central pillar to the game.  As I thought about it and played with the alignment system with 4E, I realized that the 9-point Alignment was more of a strait jacket then a playing aid.  There are no mechanical advantages to having one alignment over another.  None have a advantage or give bonuses in cretin situations or with cretin races.  The only use I have seen is using spells like Detect (Evil, Good, Neutral, ect).  Other then that, it is just there.

So I am with ToeSama on this.  What can be achieved WITH alignment that cannot be achieved WITHOUT?
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:19 pm

Garthanos wrote:
The translation/synopsis I just read includes no murder .. but rather a Dwarf who volunteers the Cart. IE his villainy at that point is riding like a peasant ;p
Recent retellings of Arthurian legend tend to be Disney-fied in order to appeal to children and modern romanticism. The original legends themselves and even older retellings -- such as Sir Thomas Mallory's Le Mort D'Arthur -- are very dark. Hell, Mallory was a French knight-turned-highway-robber and the title of his book literally means 'The Death of Arthur.' At the end of his book, he writes something like "Some people think that Arthur will return to once again raise Britain to greatness, but I think he's dead and gone. Britain is a third-world country whose people don't realize that their fifteen minutes of fame ended hundreds of years ago, if it ever happened at all." (Culturally, Britain was essentially a French colony at the time.)

Real chivalry isn't about Lancelot getting help from kindly dwarves in order to save Guenevere, and then return her to Arthur. It's about Lance taking what he wants from foes and peasants at swordpoint, and then maintaining the polite pretense of love from afar while he has in fact been bedding Guenevere for years.

Real chivalry isn't about protecting the innocent or idealism; it's about the male nobility maintaining their power in the name of God and fighting each other over wives and mistresses.

Garthanos wrote:
I did notice something else Lancelot is featured fighting armed and armored knights while himself unarmored in a number of versions including this one - I tend to lump him in with the independent combatants who do not rely on their gadgets along side Beowulf.
Like I said, Lance is Mallory's Mary Sue character, and as a result would be undefeatable naked and with no limbs.

Garthanos wrote:
Something to remember most of the examples we read about.. are indeed about those broken oaths... that doesn't make them somehow not heroes who gained great power from oaths.
Lance doesn't get his awesome fighting prowess from any oath; he's just got skillz and a strong sword arm. His only moment of redemption comes shortly before he dies, when he confesses his many sins to a priest, and then pays lip service to God. It's an epilogue of redemption, but he never lifts his sword to smite anyone after gaining redemption, so it doesn't exactly relate to adventurers.

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:38 pm

ToeSama wrote:
What can be achieved WITH alignment that cannot be achieved WITHOUT?
Maybe some players get some mileage out of alignment as role play training-wheels. Maybe some gamers enjoy playing trite Disney-esque campaigns where alignment as-written makes sense.

But speaking for myself, I can't think of anything I can do with alignment that I can't do without it. It doesn't help me role play. I certainly don't like alignment restrictions, or half of the other strings that D&D has traditionally attached to alignment.

At the same time, though, alignment gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Not as-written; merely as I interpret it.

...Yes, I realize how absurd this sounds. "Under very specific and ideal circumstances, which have never actually existed in D&D's history, I like alignment." Razz But it's the truth.

I'm a huge Planescape fan -- if my avatar didn't give that away Wink -- and alignment is a big part of its charm. And D&D's charm. What can I say? I like the idea of some cosmic force passing judgment on everyone from semi-intelligent orcs to the gods themselves. It's a refreshing contrast to the real world, where I can call a genocidal pedophile evil until I'm blue in the face, but at the end of the day he'll remain utterly convinced that he's a great guy.

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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:54 pm

Tequila Sunrise wrote:
Garthanos wrote:
The translation/synopsis I just read includes no murder .. but rather a Dwarf who volunteers the Cart. IE his villainy at that point is riding like a peasant ;p
Recent retellings of Arthurian legend tend to be Disney-fied in order to appeal to children and modern romanticism.
The writer of the Cart story was a frenchman who one could actually expect to have altered it the opposite direction for his french lady - other sources seem to have retrofitted elements from that telling in to renditions because of its popularity. My french is crapola so I certainly couldn't translate it directly.  But not thinking there actually IS a earlier version of this element you have conjured a murder out of.

http://www.geocities.ws/dagonet_uk/poemab.htm

Your vision of this seems trapped in its own, darkness (fantasy isnt exactly about realism for one thing) - Fantasy is the story in which Arthur does return from the dead and chivalry is about might turned to right.

I see no reason to be stuck in either a deep dark grey nor a black/white.

(Disneys Faeries were naked and not so light and fluffy - you do him disservice)

Tequila Sunrise wrote:

Garthanos wrote:
I did notice something else Lancelot is featured fighting armed and armored knights while himself unarmored in a number of versions including this one - I tend to lump him in with the independent combatants who do not rely on their gadgets along side Beowulf.
Like I said, Lance is Mallory's Mary Sue character, and as a result would be undefeatable naked and with no limbs.
This isn't Mallory, tho its possible any given rendering of the character infected others... and actually I think the version which presents the character as the ideal knight seems to be Lanzelet. Lancelot had miraculous events associated with the character that were most definitely unrelated to skills and quite lacking in Galahad... ranging from plunging himself in to thorn hedges and emerging unharmed to rescuing damsels from pools of boiling water without injury. I know he dodges thorns with uberskills ;p and like CuCulaine is so hot himself he makes the water boil.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Wed Nov 06, 2013 9:24 am

In Stormbringer or was it RuneQuest I seem to recall something very like alignment used for brownie points with ones deity and those where used to call in Miracles. Ie it was made a tool for having miracles not mages with religion skill.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: How do You Feel About Alignment?   Wed Nov 06, 2013 9:53 am

Garthanos wrote:
Tequila Sunrise wrote:
Garthanos wrote:
The translation/synopsis I just read includes no murder .. but rather a Dwarf who volunteers the Cart. IE his villainy at that point is riding like a peasant ;p
Recent retellings of Arthurian legend tend to be Disney-fied in order to appeal to children and modern romanticism.
The writer of the Cart story was a frenchman who one could actually expect to have altered it the opposite direction for his french lady - other sources seem to have retrofitted elements from that telling in to renditions because of its popularity. My french is crapola so I certainly couldn't translate it directly.  But not thinking there actually IS a earlier version of this element you have conjured a murder out of.
Read Le Mort before you start throwing accusations of 'conjuring' around, my friend. It's right there, in the world's oldest compilation of Arthurian legends.

If you want to use a more rosy version of the Lancelot character as your inspiration for paladinhood, I'm not going to stop you, but you should be aware that his image is highly dependent on source. Which is appropriate for what the paladin class should be -- a flexible class that can handle a wide variety of knight-in-armor archetypes.

Garthanos wrote:

(Disneys Faeries were naked and not so light and fluffy - you do him disservice)
I don't know what you mean, or what this has to do with anything. I do remember Tinkerbell and the fairy godmothers being both clothed and helpful, though.

Garthanos wrote:

Tequila Sunrise wrote:

Garthanos wrote:
I did notice something else Lancelot is featured fighting armed and armored knights while himself unarmored in a number of versions including this one - I tend to lump him in with the independent combatants who do not rely on their gadgets along side Beowulf.
Like I said, Lance is Mallory's Mary Sue character, and as a result would be undefeatable naked and with no limbs.
This isn't Mallory, tho its possible any given rendering of the character infected others... and actually I think the version which presents the character as the ideal knight seems to be Lanzelet. Lancelot had miraculous events associated with the character that were most definitely unrelated to skills and quite lacking in Galahad... ranging from plunging himself in to thorn hedges and emerging unharmed to rescuing damsels from pools of boiling water without injury. I know he dodges thorns with uberskills ;p and like CuCulaine is so hot himself he makes the water boil.
He does these same kind of things in all versions of the legend, and while the later author of your Lanzelet character may have attributed these amazing abilities to an oath, other legends simply attribute them to his badassery. Essentially, Lancelot is a sort of medieval John McClain.

And in every version I know of, Galahad is outright better in every way to his father, due to being righteous. His father can't even catch a glimpse of the Grail, due to his moral failings, while Galahad ends up finding it.

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