PDA

View Full Version : The Paladin (3.5 Base Class, PEACH)



NeoSeraphi
2011-08-23, 09:16 AM
The Judge


http://i1098.photobucket.com/albums/g374/TVTroper/Awesome%20pictures/stephen_colbert_paladin_by_todd_loc.jpg

"The peace of the world can only be maintained when those in authority have absolute power."- Tsubaki Yayoi, BlazBlue Continuum Shift

The judge is an instrument of law and order for his deity. With much stronger convictions than a normal cleric, a judge will fight until his last breath in order to maintain the stability of the rulers of the world.

Religion: A judge must select a lawful deity to worship and bestow power upon him. The judge cannot gain his power from an idea such as Law as a cleric can.

Alignment: Any lawful. A judge is not bound by the relative moral system of "good" and "evil". As long as the judge obeys what is stated as law, he is in the right in his own mind.

HD: d10

Class Skills: The judge's class skills are Climb, Concentration, Diplomacy, Gather Information, Intimidate, Jump, Knowledge (Nobility and Royalty), Knowledge (Religion), Sense Motive and Swim.

Skill Points: 4+Int per level (x4 at 1st level)

{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

1st|+1|+2|+0|+2|Aura of Law, Detect Chaos, Smite Chaos 1+Cha/day

2nd|+2|+3|+0|+3|Divine Grace, Law Before Justice

3rd|+3|+3|+1|+3|Divine Health, Aura of Order

4th|+4|+4|+1|+4|Turn Chaos

5th|+5|+4|+1|+4|Smite Chaos 2+Cha/day

6th|+6/+1|+5|+2|+5|Shackles of Order

7th|+7/+2|+5|+2|+5|Sword of Law +1

8th|+8/+3|+6|+2|+6|Rebuke Law

9th|+9/+4|+6|+3|+6|Rule of Law

10th|+10/+5|+7|+3|+7|Smite Chaos 3+Cha/day, Sword of Law +2

11th|+11/+6/+1|+7|+3|+7|Aura of Restriction

12th|+12/+7/+2|+8|+4|+8|Improved Shackles of Order

13th|+13/+8/+3|+8|+4|+8|Sword of Law +3

14th|+14/+9/+4|+9|+4|+9|Natural Diplomat

15th|+15/+10/+5|+9|+5|+9|Smite Chaos 4+Cha/day

16th|+16/+11/+6/+1|+10|+5|+10|Sword of Law +4

17th|+17/+12/+7/+2|+10|+5|+10|Improved Rule of Law

18th|+18/+13/+8/+3|+11|+6|+11|Greater Shackles of Order

19th|+19/+14/+9/+4|+11|+6|+11|Sword of Law +5

20th|+20/+15/+10/+5|+12|+6|+12|You Will All Submit, Smite Chaos 5+Cha/day

[/table]

Class Features:

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A judge is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, as well as light, medium, and heavy armor, and shields (except tower shields)

Aura of Law (Ex): A judge is a being of law and order, much like an inevitable or a devil. He projects a magical aura of law, as if he were a lawful outsider with an HD equal to his judge level.

Detect Chaos (Sp): A judge is able to sense the wild abandon within people, so that he may either correct or remove them in order to protect the stability of society. A judge is able to cast detect chaos as a spell-like ability at will, with a caster level equal to his judge level.

Smite Chaos (Su): A judge's blade carries will of his deity. A judge may declare his intention to cleanse the world of his enemy. If the enemy he has targeted is chaotic, he receives a bonus to his attack rolls equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum +0), and a bonus on damage rolls equal to his judge level for the rest of the encounter. These bonuses only apply to attacks and damage rolls made against the targeted creature. If the enemy is not chaotic, the paladin does not gain a bonus, though he still expends a use of his divine power as a lesson of restraint to him. The judge receives one use of Smite Chaos per day, and an additional use for every 5 judge levels he gains, plus one use per point of Charisma bonus (minimum +0).

Divine Grace (Su): The judge is a warrior, and though he does not receive the spellcasting power from his god that the cleric does, he does receive more protection from harm. Starting at 2nd level, the judge receives a bonus on all his saving throws equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum +0)

Law Before Justice (Ex): Even when the scum of the earth have raped, pillaged, and destroyed everything in sight, even when the goody-two shoes creeps have convinced so many of your allies to atone and join the side of good, even when every inch of the judge's being wants nothing more than to plunge his sword into the creature's neck and end its life for good, the paladin knows that it is not his place. He is not a vigilante or some defender of justice. He is simply an officer of the law. Starting at 2nd level, the judge may deal nonlethal damage with any attack without taking the standard -4 penalty.

Divine Health (Ex): The divine power of law allows for regulation of things that normal creatures couldn't even begin to understand, including the most effective immune system in the world. Starting at 3rd level, the judge's completely structured life affects his own body as well. The judge becomes immune to all mundane and magical diseases, such as those caused by the contagion spell, as well as supernatural diseases such as mummy rot and lycanthropy.

Aura of Order (Su): Though weaker creatures can, through magical influence, succumb to their inner madness, a judge has no such tendencies to begin with. Starting at 3rd level, the judge becomes immune to confusion, and allies within 10 feet of the paladin receive a morale bonus to their saving throws against confusion effects equal to the judge's class level.

Turn Chaos (Su): The judge is a force of law. He stands firm against outsiders who would spread their filth about freedom and destruction through the world. Beginning at 4th level, a judge gains the ability to turn chaotic outsiders, as a cleric turns undead. If the judge is of good alignment, he may turn demons, if the judge is of evil alignment, he may turn eladrin. A neutral judge chooses one or the other when he gains this class feature, he may not change this option later. The judge gains daily uses of this class feature equal to 3+his Charisma modifier. His effective cleric level for this class feature is equal to his judge level-3.

Shackles of Order (Sp): Unfortunately, sometimes those who would disobey don't stand and fight for their freedom like men, but run like cowards. Like slaves who try to escape from their owners. In order for a judge to capture criminals without harming them and bring them to justice, his god has given him many tools. Starting at 6th level, once per day, the judge may cast hold person as a spell-like ability, with a caster level equal to his class level. The save DC is 13+the judge's Charisma modifier.

Sword of Law (Su): In the judge's hands, any weapon becomes an instrument of law and is infused with the power of order. Starting at 7th level, any weapon the judge wields has its enhancement bonus increased by 1 and automatically receives the axiomatic weapon ability. At 10th level, and every 3 levels after that, the enhancement bonus increases by another +1, to a maximum of +5 at level 19. Additionally, starting at level 13, the weapon also projects a magic circle against chaos effect, with a caster level equal to the judge's class level. (The judge's Aura of Restriction automatically suppresses the sword's protection from compulsion effect) This ability allows a weapon's total enhancement bonus to increase up to +10, regardless of whether the judge holding it is epic level or not. It also allows the weapon to be axiomatic regardless of how many other abilities the weapon has. If a judge's weapon has a total enhancement bonus of +6 or higher, it overcomes DR/Epic.

Rebuke Law (Su): The judge speaks for his deity, and creatures of law find it difficult to question his authority. Starting at 8th level, the judge gains the ability to rebuke lawful outsiders. A lawful evil judge is able to rebuke and command any lawful evil outsider, such as a devil. A lawful neutral judge is able to rebuke and command any lawful neutral outsider, such as an inevitable. A lawful good judge is able to rebuke and command any lawful good outsider, such as certain angels and celestials. A judge's effective cleric level for his rebuke/command law ability is equal to his judge level+his Sword of Law bonus. A judge may rebuke law 3+his Charisma modifier times per day (minimum 3).

Rule of Law (Sp): A judge does not always use his weapon to restore order. Sometimes all it takes is a few strong words, and a little magic. Starting at 9th level, a judge gains the ability to cast dominate person as a spell-like ability once per day per four class levels (to a maximum of 5/day at 20th level). His caster level is equal to his judge level, and the save DC is equal to 15+his Charisma modifier.

Aura of Restriction (Su): A judge does not have the time to deal with those who believe themselves above the law. The strength of his deity exceeds all other magic, and even those who thought themselves gods with their arcane power bow before the judge's commands. Starting at 11th level, the judge projects an aura of restriction, which completely negates magical freedom. Any creature with an Intelligence score of 3 or higher within 60 feet of the judge loses any immunities to mind-affecting and compulsion abilities, whether those immunities were natural (such as a vampire's) or magical (such as a wizard's mind blank spell) for as long as they remain within the judge's aura. This aura affects the judge's allies, as well as the judge himself.

Improved Shackles of Order (Sp): Starting at 12th level, the judge's shackles of order ability improves. The judge may now cast hold monster as a spell-like ability, once per day per four class levels, maximum of 5 at 20th. The DC is 16+his Charisma modifier. This ability overlaps Shackles of Order, and the judge loses his daily casting of hold person.

Natural Diplomat (Ex): The judge respects authority, and he is able to naturally adapt to any social situation that is called for, though his honesty often betrays him, he is not naive. Starting at 14th level, the judge receives an insight bonus on his Diplomacy, Knowledge (Nobility and Royalty), and Sense Motive checks equal to half his class level, but takes the same amount as a penalty to his Bluff and Forgery checks, as well as his Disguise checks made to act in-character.

Improved Rule of Law (Sp): A judge must have authority to maintain the order of the world. That authority must command the respect of all, from the mightiest dragon to the strongest giant. Starting at 17th level, the judge's rule of law ability now allows him to cast dominate monster as a spell-like ability once per day per four class levels instead of dominate person. His caster level is equal to his judge level, and the save DC is equal to 19+his Charisma modifier.

Greater Shackles of Order (Sp): A judge will stand and fight every enemy of law, even if he is outnumbered 30 to 1, in order to protect the structure of the world. Starting at 18th level, the judge may cast mass hold monster as a spell-like ability once per day, with a caster level equal to his judge level. The DC is 19+his Charisma modifier. This ability is in addition to his spell-like abilities from Improved Shackles of Order.

You Will All Submit (Su): The 20th level judge is a remarkable force of law and order. At 20th level, the judge gains DR 10/Chaotic and projects a supernatural aura that imposes the rule of law on all who enter. Any creature within 100 ft of the judge takes a -5 penalty on all saving throws against compulsion effects, as well as a -4 HD penalty for the purposes of turning and rebuking checks.

Code of Conduct: A judge must always be lawful, and must submit to the authority of those above him, as well as to the laws and customs of the land. If the judge comes from a country that has banned slavery, it does not permit him to free the slaves of other countries where slavery is legal, for example. The rule of law is all-important. The judge must also never knowingly ally himself with chaotic creatures.

The judge must worship his Patron Deity, and must obey his deity's will. If the law of the land changes or if the judge enters new territory that clashes with the deity's beliefs or orders, the judge treats his deity's will as the absolute law over the local law.

The judge may not employ the following dishonorable tactics in battle: poison, ravages, sneak attack, death attack, sudden strike. The judge may not deal lethal damage to a creature who has voluntarily surrendered to his authority.

The judge may only accept followers and cohorts whose alignment matches his own exactly, should he take the Leadership feat or gain followers through some similar system.

If the judge violates this code of conduct in any way, he immediately loses all his class features until such time that he has atoned and received an atonement spell from a cleric of the church of his deity.

Unlike the PHB paladin, this judge does not face any multiclassing restrictions.

Jade Dragon
2011-08-24, 06:17 PM
I never get why things get DR/alignment of the weapons your most powerful enemies are likely to wield. Why are you only weak against your enemies?

Anyway, I don't like this much. Probably because
A) I have strong leanings towards chaotic neutral.
B) I read a lot of One Piece.
C) this is just begging to be played as lawful stupid.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 06:19 PM
I believe Paladins have strong lawful convictions. And you're weak against your enemies, but only your enemies. You are able to ignore all other forms of attacks.

Knaight
2011-08-24, 06:25 PM
Its mechanically solid, if clearly T4. That said, the code is highly disruptive, and the capstone ability is a liability (it includes allies for some reason). That said, it doesn't feel like a paladin - if anything this is the sort of class that seems to work for secret police style imperial agents.

Antonok
2011-08-24, 06:26 PM
The Smite Chaos just doesn't sit quite right with me :smallconfused: The rest seems good from my quick read through.

One idea I do with the regular paladins is make thier smite per encounter rather then per day.
The reason for that is I imagine a Smite to be the paladin calling upon his convictions to bring justice to his foes, and him only being able to do it so many times a day makes little sense. It also helps give them a bit more battle prowess then usual.

Knaight
2011-08-24, 06:32 PM
One idea I do with the regular paladins is make thier smite per encounter rather then per day.
The reason for that is I imagine a Smite to be the paladin calling upon his convictions to bring justice to his foes, and him only being able to do it so many times a day makes little sense. It also helps give them a bit more battle prowess then usual.

Given that it already lasts for an entire encounter, this might be a bit excessive.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 06:45 PM
Indeed. The Smite Chaos ability is similar to the Pathfinder paladin instead of the 3.5 paladin, except it's toned down. (The Pathfinder paladin also gets their Cha as an insight bonus to their AC against attacks made by the enemy they're smiting)

The reason it affects allies is because the world must have order. The paladin does not defend his allies against their duty to obey the commands of the law. Besides, once a creature is rebuked, it's your ally, but if it suddenly has more HD than it did, you've no longer got it rebuked, so...yeah. That wouldn't work out.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 06:48 PM
I don't understand what makes the code of conduct disruptive. It's exactly like the 3.5 paladin's code, except that you are unable to use ravages, sneak attacks, sudden strikes and death attacks. (You already couldn't use poisons)

In every other way, it is the same as the 3.5 paladin, with the good requirement removed.

Jade Dragon
2011-08-24, 06:50 PM
I think I ninja edited you in my above post while you were typing. My points still stands, this is begging to be lawful stupid. And I just can't see a situation where this guy won't be a major pain in the party, unless it's entirely made of paladins, and maybe clerics of Saint Cuthbert.

Knaight
2011-08-24, 07:20 PM
I don't understand what makes the code of conduct disruptive.


A paladin must always be lawful, and must submit to the authority of those above him, as well as to the laws and customs of the land. If the paladin comes from a country that has banned slavery, it does not permit him to free the slaves of other countries where slavery is legal, for example. The rule of law is all-important. The paladin must also never knowingly ally himself with chaotic creatures.
That bit, that right there - it causes problems. Sure, if the world has stable nations as the default this might be reasonable, but various tiny areas ruled by a tyrant without a stable legal system aren't exactly uncommon in fantasy, and it doesn't work well with those. It works for things along the lines of imperial agents in China or Rome during their more stable periods, not to mention the Aztec Empire, Carthaginians, Inca Empire, Ghana, Numidia, and Mali prior to European influence but the early Germanic kingdoms? The Scottish highlands? There are issues.

There are areas where this works perfectly, such as a bunch of NPC secret police, or within a group template where the PCs are said secret police. The freelance adventuring group isn't one of them.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 07:26 PM
That seems to be the lawful thing to do though. Even if you don't agree with the law personally, a lawful character will obey it because those are the rules and you must respect authority. Now some might argue that a lawful character isn't that extreme and I would agree, but the character who epitomizes law would be.

Prime32
2011-08-24, 07:38 PM
Good sir, I must most strongly disagree.


http://i345.photobucket.com/albums/p388/proteus_lives/Scan10961.jpg
http://i345.photobucket.com/albums/p388/proteus_lives/Scan10962.jpg
http://i345.photobucket.com/albums/p388/proteus_lives/Scan10963.jpg
http://asylums.insanejournal.com/scans_daily/455693.html (http://asylums.insanejournal.com/scans_daily/455693.html)

[hr]

"The earth cries out! The heavens cry out! The people cry out! They cry out for me to defeat evil! Listen up, evildoers! I am the warrior of justice, BANG SHISHIGAMI!" -Bang Shishigami, BlazBlue Calamity Trigger

http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=11792

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 07:45 PM
I don't find that to be lawful, rather I find that speech to be extremely Chaotic Good. The "I will decide what is right and the majority will have to accept me or fight me" is not lawful at all.

Jade Dragon
2011-08-24, 07:56 PM
I don't find that to be lawful, rather I find that speech to be extremely Chaotic Good. The "I will decide what is right and the majority will have to accept me or fight me" is not lawful at all.

His principles haven't changed from when he was on the government's side. His principles have stayed the same, and the government's have changed. You don't have to have to be on speaking terms with the government to be lawful, you just have to follow a personal code of honor and stick to it.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-24, 07:59 PM
His principles haven't changed from when he was on the government's side. His principles have stayed the same, and the government's have changed. You don't have to have to be on speaking terms with the government to be lawful, you just have to follow a personal code of honor and stick to it.

*shrugs* I guess we just disagree on what it means to be lawful then.

Sarco_Phage
2011-08-24, 07:59 PM
I never get why things get DR/alignment of the weapons your most powerful enemies are likely to wield. Why are you only weak against your enemies?

It only looks that way if you're looking at it from a metagame perspective.

Consider that most powerful angels have DR/Evil and most powerful fiends have DR/Good.

You can read it as them being specifically weak to only their greatest foes, but rather, read it as something like they are only capable of being harmed by a source of great holiness/evil. Or in other case, something of great Order/Chaos.

Knaight
2011-08-24, 08:48 PM
*shrugs* I guess we just disagree on what it means to be lawful then.

Regardless of that, the code is disruptive. Any story where the authority isn't working and needs to be opposed - and there are a bunch of these in fantasy- or any case in which the laws aren't really consistent and tend to be self contradictory cause the code to start breaking the game. Anyways, on lawfulness:

Lawful Good, "Crusader"

A lawful good character acts as a good person is expected or required to act. She combines a commitment to oppose evil with the discipline to fight relentlessly. She tells the truth, keeps her word, helps those in need, and speaks out against injustice. A lawful good character hates to see the guilty go unpunished.

Lawful Neutral, "Judge"

A lawful neutral character acts as law, tradition, or a personal code directs her. Order and organization are paramount to her. She may believe in personal order and live by a code or standard, or she may believe in order for all and favor a strong, organized government.

Lawful Evil, "Dominator"

A lawful evil villain methodically takes what he wants within the limits of his code of conduct without regard for whom it hurts. He cares about tradition, loyalty, and order but not about freedom, dignity, or life. He plays by the rules but without mercy or compassion. He is comfortable in a hierarchy and would like to rule, but is willing to serve. He condemns others not according to their actions but according to race, religion, homeland, or social rank. He is loath to break laws or promises.

This reluctance comes partly from his nature and partly because he depends on order to protect himself from those who oppose him on moral grounds. Some lawful evil villains have particular taboos, such as not killing in cold blood (but having underlings do it) or not letting children come to harm (if it can be helped). They imagine that these compunctions put them above unprincipled villains.

Some lawful evil people and creatures commit themselves to evil with a zeal like that of a crusader committed to good. Beyond being willing to hurt others for their own ends, they take pleasure in spreading evil as an end unto itself. They may also see doing evil as part of a duty to an evil deity or master.

Only in lawful evil are particular existing laws even mentioned as more than just part of a list of options, including personal codes. Then it goes back to said personal codes. It is mentioned in the generic description of lawfulness, but even there personal discipline is stressed.

Gideon Falcon
2011-08-24, 08:49 PM
Eh, I myself see Paladins as G-O-O-D Good, not L-A-W-F-U-L Lawful. The idea of a Paladin that puts something as silly as traditions and faulty governments ahead of the greater good strikes me as something that simply isn't so. The Paladin isn't about doing what the king says, or what any given person says; it's about doing what is Right. In another Paladin fix, the idea was referenced that the very existence of Paladins meant that there is a definable, objective definition of Good, however difficult it may be to see it. Thus, the Paladin's duty is not to the Laws of people, but to the Laws of everything that is Good and Just.

Thus, disobeying the laws of the land in order to do what is needed isn't being chaotic or even unlawful; it's simply submitting to a higher law than anything even a deity could set in place.

Roderick_BR
2011-08-25, 12:28 PM
It only looks that way if you're looking at it from a metagame perspective.

Consider that most powerful angels have DR/Evil and most powerful fiends have DR/Good.

You can read it as them being specifically weak to only their greatest foes, but rather, read it as something like they are only capable of being harmed by a source of great holiness/evil. Or in other case, something of great Order/Chaos.
This. You can read DR <n>/evil, as being very resistant against most mundane attacks. You don't worry with "lesser" harming, as you are protected. Only the most evil, cruel, vile-powered attacks have a chance to puncture your divine carapace. Also, being immune to your enemy's attacks is evil. Choosing to fight the only one that has the chance to actually harm you, that is trully heroic.
For DR <n>/good... well, something similar. A dark power so poweful that only the strongest light powers can penetrate it. And usually evil guys will avoid the ones with the divine can-opener and try tricks to win without getting in harm's way.

Finally, I agree this is less a paladin of justice, and more as an inquisitor.
"relative moral system of "good" and "evil"" is the typical excuse villains use to try to justify their acts. You never see heroes saying it. Even anti-heroes admit they are not above good and evil, but are willing to take the blame for extreme actions.

Other than that, these abilities looks good. I'd say they are on par with the variant paladins from Unearthed Arcana (also in the hypertext d20 website).

Andre
2011-08-26, 12:03 PM
While there are plenty of Paladin variants, given the law-law-i-love-law-give-more-rules-rules-rules behaviour of this class I'd rather call it 'the Enforcer'.

The class progression isn't bad and is slightly less MAD than the normal Paladin, but in the end it narrows down on fighting exclusively chaotic creatures - and using the diplomatic skills out of it. Not many options there.

Renegade Paladin
2011-08-26, 12:34 PM
If you behave as this code dictates, and someone told you you're "paladin-esque" because of it, then, sir, she was wrong. The paladin is the paragon of heroic chivalry, not the thoughtless lapdog of whichever government happens to rule the land he's standing on at a given moment.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say that changing your stance based on changing geopolitical location is not lawful at all. Such a character would be all over the place, both morally and ethically, based on whichever ruler happened to be telling him what to do at the time. Hell, if he were fighting on behalf of his ruler against an invading army, and the invaders successfully took the capital and conquered his regime, he'd have to switch sides. :smallannoyed: There is no honor, there is no heroism, there is no paladin in what this class represents.

As to the mechanics of that code, even disregarding all the above, it is set up to fail. What if your religion is not the state religion of the nation you are in? What if it has some other state religion? What if worshiping your god is banned by law? What if your lawful ruler orders you to participate in an attack against some other country that has cleverly made attacking it illegal? You'd have to disobey your lawful orders the instant you crossed the border. The code doesn't pass the basics of internal consistency for all of these reasons and more.

Aside from all that, you've committed the very basic mistake of conflating "lawful" the alignment with "lawful" the word meaning "law-abiding." The two are not the same, and the game suffers immeasurably from Gary Gygax's (all praise his name) inability to get out a thesaurus. This is by far the worst example of that I have ever seen. In terms of fluff, in terms of ability to function, and in terms of faithfulness to the concept of paladin, this class has no redeeming value.

Moving on to pure mechanics, I haven't thoroughly read the whole thing and probably won't, but one thing jumped out at me while going through. What's with the save DCs on the abilities? 13+CHA? 15+CHA? 19+CHA? That's not how it's done at all; save DCs for offensive class abilities are 10 + half level (for base classes; PrCs usually use level because they get less of them) + the relevant ability modifier; static DCs are of waning usefulness as levels increase, for obvious reasons.

That's about all I've got to say on this.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-26, 01:07 PM
If you behave as this code dictates, and someone told you you're "paladin-esque" because of it, then, sir, she was wrong. The paladin is the paragon of heroic chivalry, not the thoughtless lapdog of whichever government happens to rule the land he's standing on at a given moment.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say that changing your stance based on changing geopolitical location is not lawful at all. Such a character would be all over the place, both morally and ethically, based on whichever ruler happened to be telling him what to do at the time. Hell, if he were fighting on behalf of his ruler against an invading army, and the invaders successfully took the capital and conquered his regime, he'd have to switch sides. :smallannoyed: There is no honor, there is no heroism, there is no paladin in what this class represents.

As to the mechanics of that code, even disregarding all the above, it is set up to fail. What if your religion is not the state religion of the nation you are in? What if it has some other state religion? What if worshiping your god is banned by law? What if your lawful ruler orders you to participate in an attack against some other country that has cleverly made attacking it illegal? You'd have to disobey your lawful orders the instant you crossed the border. The code doesn't pass the basics of internal consistency for all of these reasons and more.

Aside from all that, you've committed the very basic mistake of conflating "lawful" the alignment with "lawful" the word meaning "law-abiding." The two are not the same, and the game suffers immeasurably from Gary Gygax's (all praise his name) inability to get out a thesaurus. This is by far the worst example of that I have ever seen. In terms of fluff, in terms of ability to function, and in terms of faithfulness to the concept of paladin, this class has no redeeming value.

Moving on to pure mechanics, I haven't thoroughly read the whole thing and probably won't, but one thing jumped out at me while going through. What's with the save DCs on the abilities? 13+CHA? 15+CHA? 19+CHA? That's not how it's done at all; save DCs for offensive class abilities are 10 + half level (for base classes; PrCs usually use level because they get less of them) + the relevant ability modifier; static DCs are of waning usefulness as levels increase, for obvious reasons.

That's about all I've got to say on this.

Spell-like abilities are always spell level + 10 + modifier. Hold person is a 3rd level spell, dominate person is a 5th level spell, hold monster is a 6th level spell, dominate monster is a 9th level spell, hold monster mass is a 9th level spell.

And you will never convince me that a paladin stands for good more than for law. Laws exist to keep others safe. Perhaps everyone here has been playing in too many campaigns where the government is corrupt. Order must be upheld to maintain stability in the world, and therefore chaos would have to be extinguished. That is the code of my paladin.

"All over the place, morally and ethically?" I'm saying the paladin is thoughtless, his only concern is that he upholds the laws of the land. He has no personal morals or convictions other than the desire to maintain structure. If a person has their own beliefs, their own opinions on how things should be done, then they will rebel, eventually. That's just part of being human. And if you rebel against the law, if you destroy a government, then the people no longer receive the law's protection or benefits, and that would plunge the world into, wait for it...chaos.

Togath
2011-08-26, 03:04 PM
Actually what you are describing is more lawful neutral than lawful good, possibly even true neutral, while I can understand that some laws need to be upheld, saying that even those of a corrupt government need to be is illogical.

Dralnu
2011-08-26, 03:27 PM
While there are plenty of Paladin variants, given the law-law-i-love-law-give-more-rules-rules-rules behaviour of this class I'd rather call it 'the Enforcer'.

The class progression isn't bad and is slightly less MAD than the normal Paladin, but in the end it narrows down on fighting exclusively chaotic creatures - and using the diplomatic skills out of it. Not many options there.

I have to agree with this.

jiriku
2011-08-26, 03:47 PM
I'm saying the paladin is thoughtless, his only concern is that he upholds the laws of the land. He has no personal morals or convictions other than the desire to maintain structure. If a person has their own beliefs, their own opinions on how things should be done, then they will rebel, eventually. That's just part of being human. And if you rebel against the law, if you destroy a government, then the people no longer receive the law's protection or benefits, and that would plunge the world into, wait for it...chaos.

Textbook lawful neutral.

While I'll try not to get as passionate as others, I'd agree that your code is disruptive to a party. Totally sidestepping the whole "what is lawful" thing for a bit, parties include characters of varied alignments, classes, goals, and methods. Your paladin can party with Neutral Evil characters, who strongly reject your pally's "abandon the self" philosophy. He can party with druids and rangers, who tend to have agendas that run counter to local laws from time to time. He can party with bards, rogues, ninjas, and assassins - classes that have skills and features intended to help them break the law, and very crime-friendly fluff. He can party with members of prestige classes like vigilante, avenging executioner, and scar enforcer - classes themed around taking the law into your own hands. It is inevitable that your pally will come into HARD conflict with parties containing these sorts of characters, since he is compelled to obey the rule of law (ALL the laws, ALL the time) under threat of losing his class features.

As an alternative, consider restricting the pally so that he can only party with other lawful characters. This would dramatically reduce the potential for conflict, and if the group is rolling an all-lawful party, it's probably understood by all that skullduggery is not to be considered in such a campaign.

Telonius
2011-08-26, 03:58 PM
And you will never convince me that a paladin stands for good more than for law.

A single Evil act will cause a Paladin to fall.

A single Chaotic act will not.

Sarco_Phage
2011-08-26, 05:40 PM
Guys, keep in mind


Alignment: Any lawful. A paladin is not bound by the relative moral system of "good" and "evil". As long as the paladin obeys what is stated as law, he is in the right in his own mind.

He's not suggesting that his Paladin would be Lawful Good, anyway. There's plenty of room for a Lawful Evil Paladin that supports a corrupt government. Although the phrase "Lawful Evil Paladin" still grates.

Renegade Paladin
2011-08-26, 08:30 PM
And you will never convince me that a paladin stands for good more than for law. Laws exist to keep others safe. Perhaps everyone here has been playing in too many campaigns where the government is corrupt. Order must be upheld to maintain stability in the world, and therefore chaos would have to be extinguished. That is the code of my paladin.
And your "paladin" isn't, because that isn't good. It's also incredibly naive. Laws exist to keep others safe when there is good governance. When there is not, they exist for the aggrandizement of the government at the expense of the governed. "Law = safety" is pure fiction, even in a fictional world.

"All over the place, morally and ethically?" I'm saying the paladin is thoughtless, his only concern is that he upholds the laws of the land. He has no personal morals or convictions other than the desire to maintain structure. If a person has their own beliefs, their own opinions on how things should be done, then they will rebel, eventually. That's just part of being human. And if you rebel against the law, if you destroy a government, then the people no longer receive the law's protection or benefits, and that would plunge the world into, wait for it...chaos.
You are a "paladin" of Saint Cuthbert. You are in a land ruled by a cleric of Hextor. Worship of any god other than Hextor is banned by law. What happens? Or heck, you are a "paladin" of Saint Cuthbert, who commands protection of the common folk, and the land is ruled by some cultist of Erythnul who randomly slaughters said common folk and due to being in charge has made it legal for him to do. What happens?

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-26, 08:57 PM
And your "paladin" isn't, because that isn't good. It's also incredibly naive. Laws exist to keep others safe when there is good governance. When there is not, they exist for the aggrandizement of the government at the expense of the governed. "Law = safety" is pure fiction, even in a fictional world.


My paladin isn't supposed to be good.



You are a "paladin" of Saint Cuthbert. You are in a land ruled by a cleric of Hextor. Worship of any god other than Hextor is banned by law. What happens? Or heck, you are a "paladin" of Saint Cuthbert, who commands protection of the common folk, and the land is ruled by some cultist of Erythnul who randomly slaughters said common folk and due to being in charge has made it legal for him to do. What happens?

The code does not require you to obey your god. It requires you to worship your god and obey the law. So if you were in a place where your god's teachings were not obeyed, you would ignore your god's teachings and obey the law. The god would probably understand if it was only temporary, however if you continued doing this for months or years at a time it would be time to either relocate or choose a new god.

As for places where the worship of other gods is prohibited by law, I suppose the paladin would simply avoid those places. (Again, I've never played a game where religion was part of the law, and I designed the class based on my experiences) If it was unavoidable, he would lose his class features and have to atone, or change to the god who ruled the land. (Assuming the god was lawful)

Prime32
2011-08-26, 09:07 PM
My paladin isn't supposed to be good.And no one would have a problem if it wasn't called paladin, but "Judge" or something. :smalltongue: The name "paladin" is associated with good.

And Tsubaki is supposed to be a tragic character because she's trying to achieve good goals but doesn't realise that supporting the Librarium will ultimately cause far more chaos than rebelling against it. The Librarium doesn't need to be torn down entirely; if she killed the Omnicidal Maniacs in charge and installed people like Jin and herself in their place then it would barely cause any disruption at all, but she's so devoted to her methods that she forgets what her goal was.

Bovine Colonel
2011-08-26, 09:19 PM
I'd like at this point to direct you, NeoSeraphi, to this TVTropes page (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ThePaladin) which I feel quite accurately represents the modern conceptions of a paladin.

Draxar
2011-08-26, 09:23 PM
Code of Conduct:
<snip>
The paladin must worship and obey his Patron Deity.


The code does not require you to obey your god.

Central… law… systems… cannot… handle… this… contradiction. Paladin… shutting… down. All… going… dark. Law… law… what have you done to me?

Sarco_Phage
2011-08-26, 09:48 PM
And no one would have a problem if it wasn't called paladin, but "Judge" or something. :smalltongue: The name "paladin" is associated with good.

Strictly speaking, the name "Paladin" is associated with Charlemagne's knights, but that's just splitting hairs.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-26, 09:59 PM
I'd like at this point to direct you, NeoSeraphi, to this TVTropes page (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ThePaladin) which I feel quite accurately represents the modern conceptions of a paladin.

The idea wasn't to represent "modern conceptions". Read the OP. I wrote this class to portray my idea of what a paladin should be.

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-26, 10:00 PM
Central… law… systems… cannot… handle… this… contradiction. Paladin… shutting… down. All… going… dark. Law… law… what have you done to me?

Hm? Whoops. That's not what it says in my Word doc. Must have forgotten to edit. I'll change it.

Renegade Paladin
2011-08-27, 06:20 AM
My paladin isn't supposed to be good.
I gather that. The problem is that this makes him not a paladin.
I'd like at this point to direct you, NeoSeraphi, to this TVTropes page (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ThePaladin) which I feel quite accurately represents the modern conceptions of a paladin.
The conception of a paladin is distinctly pre-modern, clearly displayed as early as the surviving manuscript of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, dating to the 14th century - and likely existing far and away before that, given how rare writing stories down was in the medieval period and how rarely such ideas as that simply spring forth fully formed at once, with the Pearl Poet clearly expecting his audience to understand what he was on about.
I instructed her to try you, and you truly seem
To be the most perfect paladin ever to pace the earth.
As the pearl to the white pea in precious worth,
So in good faith is Gawain to other gay knights.
For those unfamiliar with the poem, I will provide a synopsis. Spoilered for those who may wish to read the poem, which I recommend doing. The Green Knight was playing the classic "beheading game" of Celtic mythology with Gawain, having walked into Arthur's court and challenged the Knights of the Round Table to strike him one blow if the one who strikes it would take an answering blow a year and a day hence at the Green Chapel. Gawain cut his head off, upon which the Green Knight picked up his head, put it back on, reminded Gawain to meet him at the appointed place and time, and walked out.

Almost a year later, Gawain, being an honorable knight, sets forth with great trepidation to keep his word. He quests for days searching for the Green Chapel, and three days from his appointment, near the point of starvation, he comes upon a castle. The lord and lady welcome him, and he explains his quest and that he is lost, upon which the lord laughs and says the Green Chapel is but two miles from the castle, and proposes that Gawain stay the intervening three days. As sport, the lord says he will go hunting each day, and he will give Gawain what he catches if Gawain will give the lord what he gains during the time he hunted.

So of course the lord goes out hunting, and his lady immediately attempts to seduce Gawain. Gawain refuses, but she kisses him. The lord comes back, gives Gawain his catch, and Gawain gives him the kiss, refusing to say whence he got it. On the second day she kisses him twice, and the same scenario plays out. On the third day she kisses him three times, and offers him her ring. He refuses this, but she insists he take her green silk belt, which she claims will keep him from all physical harm. Upon the lord's return, Gawain gives him the kisses, but keeps the belt.

He then rides to the Green Chapel the next morning, where he meets the Green Knight as promised. The Green Knight takes a huge axe, and swings at Gawain's neck, but misses. He takes another one, and misses again. Gawain is getting impatient at this point, telling him to stop playing and be done with it. The Green Knight swings a third time, grazing Gawain's neck, upon which Gawain has received a blow and jumps up, putting his helmet on and declaring that he shall not accept another unanswered.

The Green Knight then laughs and removes his helmet, revealing himself as the lord of the castle. He tells Gawain that the first miss was for the first day's bargain kept, the second was for the second's, and the cut on his neck was for partially breaking it on the third. Gawain is mortified, but the passage above is the Green Knight assuring him that he has passed the test, and did not break the bargain out of desire for gain or for adultery, but rather to preserve his own life, for which the Green Knight faults him less - and says he has behaved as the "most perfect paladin ever to pace the earth," an odd turn of phrase if it is meant to convey the most rigidly mindless upholder of the law of the land.

jiriku
2011-08-27, 09:57 AM
It seems much of the debate at this point is merely over the meaning attached to the name of the class. If I could offer a suggestion, those who object to the choice of name could simply disregard it and critique the class as a nameless subject.

Knaight
2011-08-27, 11:27 PM
It seems much of the debate at this point is merely over the meaning attached to the name of the class. If I could offer a suggestion, those who object to the choice of name could simply disregard it and critique the class as a nameless subject.

I'd agree. However, the restrictiveness of the code remains a problem.

Prime32
2011-08-29, 05:00 AM
It would make more sense if he had to obey the orders of his deity/patron over local laws when they conflicted. Otherwise it's trivially easy to stop paladins from operating outside their home nations, making them useless for crusades.

Also, how do you determine what is a legitimate authority? Would a paladin who entered a place like Molossia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_of_Molossia) have to obey an order to kill himself? What's to stop anyone from declaring themselves president of a micronation consisting of the ground around them, and giving the paladin orders? Can the paladin's patron give him authority to break the laws of other nations by saying it does not recognise their sovereignty?

NeoSeraphi
2011-10-16, 01:19 AM
It would make more sense if he had to obey the orders of his deity/patron over local laws when they conflicted. Otherwise it's trivially easy to stop paladins from operating outside their home nations, making them useless for crusades.

Also, how do you determine what is a legitimate authority? Would a paladin who entered a place like Molossia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_of_Molossia) have to obey an order to kill himself? What's to stop anyone from declaring themselves president of a micronation consisting of the ground around them, and giving the paladin orders? Can the paladin's patron give him authority to break the laws of other nations by saying it does not recognise their sovereignty?

That seems like the best middle ground, yes. In order to keep the paladin out of harm's way, his deity may declare which law is most absolute.

Edit: Changed the name to "The Judge", though it's not letting me change the name of the thread along with it unfortunately...