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Staven
2008-08-14, 11:22 AM
I am currently in a campaign based around, in short, a resistance group trying to overthrow an evil warlord. It's been progressing smoothely, except for one little detail: I am a paladin/grayguard, and a party member is a VERY evil dread necromancer. We are constantly at odds, but that's only half of the problem. The other problem is that I'm a paladin, and he does horrible things to people at night which are audible throughout our secret base. I am associating with an evil character, albeit i'm trying to keep it to a minimum. I have two questions:

1. Is a necessary association with evil covered by the paladin code? and
2. If it isn't, will being a grayguard help my case? (we're using an alternate set of grayguard rules where instead of it being easy to get your pally powers back if you break a rule, the rules are just ill defined)

Tormsskull
2008-08-14, 11:24 AM
1. Is a necessary association with evil covered by the paladin code? and


Ask your DM.



2. If it isn't, will being a grayguard help my case? (we're using an alternate set of grayguard rules where instead of it being easy to get your pally powers back if you break a rule, the rules are just ill defined)

Ask your DM.

Regardless of what anyone on the forums here tells you, its still going to be up to your DM. Unless your DM said he was unsure and would like additional opinions before making a ruling, getting other peoples opinions on this is not going to help.

Staven
2008-08-14, 11:34 AM
The problem is that I've asked him a couple times and his only answer has just been "don't kill each other, please," which doesn't really help my character. My character is a bit of a martyr, which causes a couple problems. First, if he dies, the state of his soul is ambiguous, he might get in to his afterlife, he might not, and the player behind the dread necro has openly told me, both meta and IC, that if I were to die (and he hinted that it might be by his hand), that he would be raised as a death knight or something (although i'm pretty sure you need a god to make something like that). So really, I'm not concerned with what the DM says, but what I should do.

FatherMalkav
2008-08-14, 11:45 AM
WEll, looking at the code in black and white:

A paladinís 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.

So four bullets: 1) Respect legitimate authority (whether legitimate is determined by you or the DM is up to him), 2) No lying, cheating, poison, or similar, 3) Help those in need who don't help evil or chaos, and 4) punish those who hurt the innocent (again, innocence can get gray, so ask the DM).

So look at your problems:
1) Does this association with evil break a point of your code? If not, then you're fine, if it does then no.
2) I don't know Grayguard so I can't say.

Again though, ask the DM if possible. It sucks he's taking a neutral stance, as he is the gods and he determines what makes and breaks your code.

EDIT:

While she may adventure with characters of any good or neutral alignment, a paladin will never knowingly associate with evil characters, nor will she continue an association with someone who consistently offends her moral code. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good.
RAW, no. ask your DM for a final answer.

Tengu_temp
2008-08-14, 11:49 AM
A DM who lets a paladin and an evil character be in the same group is either neglectful, stupid, or a jerk who loves to see inter-party conflict. How does the rest of the party look? If they're good/neutral, I don't think if there is a place for the necromancer here. Confront him on his evil deeds, if he doesn't stop then imprison/kill him.

A perfect example why I'm against evil characters in non-evil groups.

AstralFire
2008-08-14, 11:55 AM
A DM who lets a paladin and an evil character be in the same group is either neglectful, stupid, or a jerk who loves to see inter-party conflict. How does the rest of the party look? If they're good/neutral, I don't think if there is a place for the necromancer here. Confront him on his evil deeds, if he doesn't stop then imprison/kill him.

A perfect example why I'm against evil characters in non-evil groups.

I've allowed it a rare few times it's made sense. But this is why I try to have all of my PCs talk to each other extensively about intra-party coordination before a game starts.

kamikasei
2008-08-14, 11:59 AM
I am currently in a campaign based around, in short, a resistance group trying to overthrow an evil warlord.

Why, if you want to overthrow an evil warlord, would you team up with a thoroughly evil necromancer who threatens to kill you and desecrate your corpse, and who commits atrocities daily?

Shouldn't you kill the necromancer first for being an evil monster who's done evil with your knowledge, then get on with defeating the warlord with a resistance group who have compatible goals?

I'm not suggesting PvP as a solution to your problem, but I don't understand how your character can plausibly get in to this situation.

Tengu_temp
2008-08-14, 12:14 PM
I've allowed it a rare few times it's made sense. But this is why I try to have all of my PCs talk to each other extensively about intra-party coordination before a game starts.

If you have a Jayne around, sure. But having a Belkar or Black Mage in an otherwise good/neutral group works only in comedy (and such characters often get annoying quickly). And I don't think if we're talking about a comedy campaign here.

Tokiko Mima
2008-08-14, 12:16 PM
Greyguard essentially lets you bypass all the nasty lawful goodness bits of the Paladin code, though, so I wouldn't worry. Technically a greyguard paladin could themselves do all the things your dread necromancer friend is doing (interrogation by torture, right? Greyguards are cool with that (http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/compscoundrel_gallery/102042.jpg)) without getting in trouble with his Paladin Code.

All you have to do is be sure you're serving a "greater cause" and any amount of association with evil or innocent blood that has to be spilled on the road to hell and back is A-OK fluff-wise. That's kinda why I don't like the Greyguard PrC, personally, but that's only my opinion. :smallcool:

hamishspence
2008-08-14, 12:20 PM
Exalted Deeds said you can associate with an evil character, when working toward a good goal, as long as you do not let them do evil things.

Paladins Code is usually seen as overriding this.

Drgaon Mag paladin rules compilation: gathering basic rules together, said paladin can associate with evil, on a limited basis, with the aim of redeeming it.

Grey Guard has limited bonuses: by strict ruling a non-10th level GG still Falls every time he breaks code, but, if done in good cause, casters of atonement on HIM take no XP penalty.

AstralFire
2008-08-14, 12:23 PM
If you have a Jayne around, sure. But having a Belkar or Black Mage in an otherwise good/neutral group works only in comedy (and such characters often get annoying quickly). And I don't think if we're talking about a comedy campaign here.

NWN 2 has a good example of a ruthless, evil character fitting into a good party. Basically they have to be one of those Machiavelli/Vetinari evil for the greater good (or alternatively, evil with no megalomania and a bigger evil to fight, like due to vengeance or simple pragmatism) for it to work. And it's not a guaranteed fit, by any means.

only1doug
2008-08-14, 12:34 PM
It seems impossible to me for the 2 of you to work together, If you as a player feel that continued association with him will cause your Paladin to fall then you can't proceed or you won't have any fun.

Possible resolutions (discuss with your GM):

1)
Attempt to redeem the evil PC, prevent his torture and try to turn him good. (highly unlikely to work by the sound of the other players preferred style)

2)
Create another character that can tolerate the Evil PC and hand your Paladin to the GM with the instruction that he intends to be the personal enemy of the Evil and should be used as a re-curring foil for the Evil guys dark ways.

3)
Stop playing with the group because your preferred style clashes with the other player and the GM won't smooth things out enough for you.

4)
Carry on playing the Paladin and get more and more frustrated by the evil PC.

hamishspence
2008-08-14, 12:47 PM
A point to remeber is the book released immediately prior to Scoundrel (Tyrant of the Nine Hells) covers what happens to those who do evil and do not atone, apologize, and provide restitution, as well as giving up benefits of evil acts (might make exception for non-physical benefits like information or Other People's Lives.

If you're Lawful, and you haven't atoned fully (i.e. not just the atonement spell) and your evil acts are enough, your character's soul goes to Nine Hells. Even if they were LG at end of their life. If they died repentant and attempting to atone, they become hellbred instead. Repenting at moment of death has them become spectres of Dis.

So, even if your character is getting what they want: not falling, completing quest with help of evil character, they might have unpleasant fate awaiting them.

Undefined code: Dragon magazine tried to define it more. Wasn't very successful. 3rd party sources like Quintessenial Paladin 2 definied it in detail. The problem with using a low-definition code is A: 10th level benefit becomes meaningless, and B: Do not Do Evil is in basic code.

AstralFire
2008-08-14, 12:50 PM
A point to remeber is the book released immediately prior to Scoundrel (Tyrant of the Nine Hells) covers what happens to those who do evil and do not atone, apologize, and provide restitution, as well as giving up benefits of evil acts (might make exception for non-physical benefits like information or Other People's Lives.

If you're Lawful, and you haven't atoned fully (i.e. not just the atonement spell) and your evil acts are enough, your character's soul goes to Nine Hells. Even if they were LG at end of their life. If they died repentant and attempting to atone, they become hellbred instead. Repenting at moment of death has them become spectres of Dis.

So, even if your character is getting what they want: not falling, completing quest with help of evil character, they might have unpleasant fate awaiting them.

Undefined code: Dragon magazine tried to define it more. Wasn't very successful. 3rd party sources like Quintessenial Paladin 2 definied it in detail. The problem with using a low-definition code is A: 10th level benefit becomes meaningless, and B: Do not Do Evil is in basic code.

How does associating with evil yet not committing enough evil to lose paladin powers equal performing evil acts?

Riffington
2008-08-14, 12:58 PM
At the very least, you have to help his victims. If you know they are being tortured downstairs, you need to go save them or play a new character.
Greyguard does change things, but surely not quite to that extent.

hamishspence
2008-08-14, 01:05 PM
Greyguard are designed to perform evil and get free atonements. Since Staven said they were blurring the code rather than having paladin fall every time, that suggests paladin is getting away with evil acts in a good cause.

Depending on your views, allowing a companion to commit evil and doing nothing, might be minor evil act, but its not listed in Tyrants, so might not add points to your corruption rating.

hamishspence
2008-08-14, 01:07 PM
and normally said evil acts must be "in a good cause" or in furtherence of their faith. Beating confessions out of baddies costs no atonement XP to guy giving you atonements. Bar-room brawls do.

And, of course, your superiors can exile you from order if you take your acts too far.

Pandaren
2008-08-14, 01:10 PM
If working with the dread necromancer can help sovle a larger goal, the paladin can deal with him later.

Gamebird
2008-08-14, 01:19 PM
Sounds like your DM is being a ball-less wonder. If you aren't comfortable having your character be cool with adventuring with an evil dork like the necromancer, then tell the DM you're done with this character. (Let the DM decide what to do with him.)

Make a new character that better fits the enemy and the party's weak points. Make sure he's evil*.

Game on.


*If playing an evil character doesn't sit well with you, then not only retire your current character, but retire yourself and find another group. Because trust me - evil-necromancer-boy here is playing evil to annoy you, to show that no one can stop him and that he's better than everyone else. He's not going to stop (unless everyone plays evil, and then he might play good and insist that he has to stop everyone else from being evil). Most gaming problems can be solved by finding a better class of players.

AstralFire
2008-08-14, 01:22 PM
Yeah, anyone playing up how they're going to kill you and raise your body is just doing it to be a jerk. In an evil campaign, I can see doing it after the fact, but the OoC gloating before it's even come up is ridiculous.

TheThan
2008-08-14, 01:41 PM
*Sigh*

Iíve talked in depth about paladins before, so Iíll try to save everyone the really long winded speech.
Your Dm really needs to work this sort of thing out before the game starts. Seriously it stops a lot of trouble like this from happening.

Generally its bad to have two characters with such diametrically opposed alignments. Particularly when it comes to paladins.

While there is the rare situation where the two classes can coexist, most of the time it results in either a PK or a fallen paladin. Neither situation should be forced upon the players. By definition paladins are supposed to be the ones to kill guys like dread necromancers. Which is the core of the problem, the white knight is supposed to kill the villainous necromancer. Itís part of his nature, and character.

In every game I run I check over all the character sheets and when I find when two such classes clash, I get the two players together and come to an agreement. Basically I explain the situation and ask for one of them to compromise and play a different character. If you have reasonable players it usually solves the problem.

As far as in game actions, a paladin cannot stand by and let evil happen. Apathy and inaction is not an option for the paladin. He should seek to stop the (obviously) evil acts of his companion; how he chooses to do that is up to him and his character.


Oh and

I the deny existence of grey guards.

Staven
2008-08-14, 01:55 PM
I seem to be in a bit of a fix here, though, since the player behind the dread necro minmaxed him to the point where if I were to confront him, the legions of the Scourge (WC III, anyone?) would be upon me, and there would be little I could do about it. I'm actually regretting the fact that I didn't kill him at a low level when I had the chance. He was "hiding his alignment" at that point. Oh, and redeeming him is not an option. This player is really the only problem, the DM I actually phoned up, he said that he's actually going somewhere with this, and that I'd like the conclusion. The player, like I was saying, constantly plays evil, regardless of the group's alignment, and if he plays good, he plays a Miko-reminiscent paladin. Every character he makes is a carbon copy of the last one: talks like a badly designed anime character, looks like he was dipped in a vat of black ink (i'm not kidding about this one), overconfident as hell, and a boring backstory that just reinforces the fact that he's irredeemably evil with truly awful writing. We can't kick him out, because my group is all old friends, so I'm out of options. I may just have to start killing his characters at low levels, because he rolls casters that get more powerful as they go along most of the time, until he gets the idea.

EDIT: Although commenting on his Miko-like paladins (if you want a point of referance for what they're like, combine Miko with the power-playing half ogre with a spiked chain) while playing a grayguard may seem hypocritical, I tried to differentiate my actions from his, i.e. not regarding everyone not of my clergy as heretics, only fighting evil creeps (he goes far enough as to go after chaotic and neutral good while playing a paladin), etc.

Telonius
2008-08-14, 01:57 PM
Hm. So, your Grey Guard has need of teaming up with a Necromancer.

Here's what probably should have happened.

Grapple check. Hold him by his ankles over a precipice.
"Now, let's discuss this necromancy business. I'm a reasonable man, so let's make a deal. You stop doing it, and work with me to help overthrow this tyrant, and I allow you to live. Agreed?"

If he refuses or gets snippy, let him drop.

There you go. Blurry moral code, yet attempting to redeem a villain.

EDIT: Hm, differential in power level makes a difference there.

chiasaur11
2008-08-14, 02:06 PM
The DM said "Just Don't kill each other", right?
Sounds like an excuse for a visit from poetic justice.
You lock HIM up in the basement torture cellar, force him to do good or he suffers the agony of the nine hells, and feel justified. I mean, if Grey Guard can't torture this guy for the greater good, than the whole point of allowing them Jack Bauer interrogation is lost.

Or you could just talk it over with the player, but where's the ffun in that?

LordMalrog
2008-08-14, 03:15 PM
OK OK! I'm here to put this whole situation into a deeper level of context. Personally i'm in this party. I'm a ninja assasin who is prone to pulling this party up the metaphorical hill that is this adventure. Before you ask, we're using alt rules that allow assasins to be chaotic good. Alright, first lets put our common enemy into context. He's an unusually large blackgaurd named Garm. He's the overlord of a kingdom that we as an underground have been trying to uproot. Our now infamous necromancer has often summoned horrible unspeakable abominations, but only to fight this greater evil. His overall intentions are generally nefarious, but we tolerate him because he pulls a large amount of the weight. (he's the party twink, so he sorta has us covered when anything gets too difficult). His character is not overall aggressive, as overly defensive. These two openly bite back at eachother, while i try to keep the whole operation under control. OH and our DM is not limpwristed, he's actually an exceptional DM. He's just tired of having to stop the whole godamn campaign over this friggen arguement that comes up every other adventure. Personally i'm fine with the term "The enemy of my enemy is my friend." and responses to this?:smallconfused:

AstralFire
2008-08-14, 03:20 PM
Admirable of you, but if it's coming up that often, the DM should probably step in so you guys get an OoC resolution (followed by IC reflections of this.)

hamishspence
2008-08-14, 03:28 PM
Grey Guard is not really suited to that big a stretch. It can work for a certain amount of freedom of action for paladin, but not usually that much.

Now if GG reaches 10 levels in class, maybe, if said necromancer keeps his efforts heavily focussed on the job and his hands off non-combatants. Since GG can do pretty nasty things off his own bat, should be, not OK with, but willing to delay discussions of, necromancer's nastiness to baddies.

Personally, I'd say, the Fall and Atone lots, fits better that trying to fuzz the Code. And, if high enough level, no more falls, if acts are tied firmly to the mission.

I think people who want their paladins to do something dubious are better of saying: I do this, I fall, I go get atonement, rather than trying to to come up with reason for dubious actions not breaking code. And as GG, atonement comes easier.

And discuss the GG/necro interaction beforehand. less arguing at the time. List what paladin will tolerate (and maybe Fall for doing so) and what they will not.

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 04:45 PM
Greyguards aren't really lawful good, nor are they classic paladins, because "the ends justified the means" is exactly what lawfulness stands against, and the whole point of lawfulness is that you stand against that kind of reasoning even when it's inconvenient.

So since you're neutral or chaotic on the law/chaos axis, go nuts?

Aquillion
2008-08-14, 04:59 PM
The problem is that I've asked him a couple times and his only answer has just been "don't kill each other, please," which doesn't really help my character.I think that that is your DM's answer, though. He's saying, basically -- don't kick up a fuss that would cause problems for his game.

Respect him. Some DMs like to handle massive interparty conflict; others don't, and it sounds like yours doesn't. Starting an unnecessary fight with the dread necro is not going to be fun for anyone involved. If it helps, try talking to both the dread necro and the DM out of character to get them to lay off.

And since your DM has made it clear that keeping the party running smoothly is his first priority, you just have to justify things to yourself; your DM certainly isn't going to punish you for not causing problems. One easy answer, as long as they don't commit atrocities directly in front of you, is to simply have your Paladin stop taking the necromancer seriously (that, at least, will let you deal with their taunts -- your Paladin views them as empty chatter.) You might also answer that it is your deity that will decide what happens to your spirit after death, not the necromancer, and that you do not care what happens to your earthly shell.

You could also take a more fatalistic outlook; you have to ally with the dread necromancer because that is what has happened, and because it therefore must be your deity's will. It is a burden you must endure, at least until your current tasks are complete or your deity gives you a sign otherwise (hint: they won't.)


Greyguards aren't really lawful good, nor are they classic paladins, because "the ends justified the means" is exactly what lawfulness stands against, and the whole point of lawfulness is that you stand against that kind of reasoning even when it's inconvenient.This is not true. In fact, lawfulness itself is a form of "ends justifies the means" thinking. A lawful character will uphold a law or principal even if it causes pain or unnecessary suffering, on the belief that the law itself has value beyond those individual cases.

A chaotic good character who says that a clearly innocent but lawfully-convicted character must be freed is using ends-justifies-the-means reasoning, yes -- but the lawful good Paladin who says that they must nonetheless be executed because that is what the law says is also using such reasoning, since he is arguing that the ends of a concrete and universal system of justice sometimes justifies treating individuals unjustly.

The lawful character simply has more broad, communally-oriented ends, as opposed to a chaotic character's more individualistic views.

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 05:30 PM
A chaotic good character who says that a clearly innocent but lawfully-convicted character must be freed is using ends-justifies-the-means reasoning, yes -- but the lawful good Paladin who says that they must nonetheless be executed because that is what the law says is also using such reasoning, since he is arguing that the ends of a concrete and universal system of justice sometimes justifies treating individuals unjustly.

Since when is a clearly innocent person going to be executed?

Yes, innocent people have been executed, but I don't know of even one who was known at the time to clearly have been innocent.

Edit: Also, you're wrong. Lawfulness is not "the ends justify the means" thinking at all. It is "the means must be consistent regardless of the ends" thinking.

InkEyes
2008-08-14, 05:55 PM
OK OK! I'm here to put this whole situation into a deeper level of context. Personally i'm in this party. I'm a ninja assasin who is prone to pulling this party up the metaphorical hill that is this adventure. Before you ask, we're using alt rules that allow assasins to be chaotic good. Alright, first lets put our common enemy into context. He's an unusually large blackgaurd named Garm. He's the overlord of a kingdom that we as an underground have been trying to uproot. Our now infamous necromancer has often summoned horrible unspeakable abominations, but only to fight this greater evil. His overall intentions are generally nefarious, but we tolerate him because he pulls a large amount of the weight. (he's the party twink, so he sorta has us covered when anything gets too difficult). His character is not overall aggressive, as overly defensive. These two openly bite back at eachother, while i try to keep the whole operation under control. OH and our DM is not limpwristed, he's actually an exceptional DM. He's just tired of having to stop the whole godamn campaign over this friggen arguement that comes up every other adventure. Personally i'm fine with the term "The enemy of my enemy is my friend." and responses to this?:smallconfused:

You've said yourself that your character is chaotic good and I can understand how you'd justify working with a necromancer, but this is a Paladin we're talking about. Using the standard setup from the PHB, Paladins are the paragon of law and goodness, and that's exactly opposite of everything the Dread Necromancer represents. The Gray Guard prestige class offers a small bit of leeway when it comes to consorting with evil and committing less-than-lawful good acts, but you've pointed out that this necromancer has nefarious plans of his own. Even a Gray Guard can't let this stand for long without voicing some objections.

The DM might be tired of listening to the Gray Guard say, "I don't approve of what you're doing Mr. Necromancer", but at this point it should be obvious that such problems aren't going to go away if they're ignored long enough. These problems should be worked out between the DM and the two players.

TheThan
2008-08-14, 06:27 PM
It sounds like your DM just doesnít want to deal with this situation, which is something he should have taken into consideration when he received the character sheets from his players. As a Dm thatís part of his job.

It starting to look like the only solution that wonít spark an OOC problem is for someone to come up with a new character, either the paladin or the necromancer. The only other real option is to just ride it out. youíve said the DM is ďgoing some where with thisĒ so maybe thereís something up the road that will make all the irritation worth while.

Occasional Sage
2008-08-14, 07:08 PM
I am currently in a campaign based around, in short, a resistance group trying to overthrow an evil warlord. It's been progressing smoothely, except for one little detail: I am a paladin/grayguard, and a party member is a VERY evil dread necromancer. We are constantly at odds, but that's only half of the problem. The other problem is that I'm a paladin, and he does horrible things to people at night which are audible throughout our secret base.



*snip*
This player is really the only problem, the DM I actually phoned up, he said that he's actually going somewhere with this, and that I'd like the conclusion. The player, like I was saying, constantly plays evil, regardless of the group's alignment,
*snip*
We can't kick him out, because my group is all old friends, so I'm out of options. I may just have to start killing his characters at low levels, because he rolls casters that get more powerful as they go along most of the time, until he gets the idea.


So, you're playing in a (mostly?) good-aligned group, with a character that fits in, and this one guy plays something diametrically opposed? I'd put a fair amount of money on "he knew this would be a problem and did it anyway."

Since he is (you say) an old friend of yours, can you talk to him outside the game and explain that he's wrecking the game for you? *Hopefully* he'll be reasonable, see that he's the squeaky wheel, and agree to die in some spectacular fashion so that he can bring in a new character.

But I doubt that will work, from what you've said.

I'd pin down your GM on exactly what his "plans" are for this. Is he intending to teach this guy a lesson in party composition, written in his character's blood? You need to have a resolution to this, in order to keep the group functioning (and maybe the friendship, too, if this is how the guy behaves).

Waspinator
2008-08-14, 08:25 PM
I'd say your best bet would be to talk to the guy outside of the game and try to convince him to tone it down a little. Evil characters in a mostly-good group can work, but usually only if the evil guy is relatively lawful or otherwise has put restraints on himself (for example: he likes to inflict pain but knows that that would usually get him in trouble, so he works for the good guys so that he can kill enemies with the excuse of righteousness. Or something else like that). The "kill anyone just because I'm bored" kind of evil is really hard to justify your typical heroic party tolerating unless it's a Belkar-type situation where they basically need him for his fighting ability and have a means of keeping him in check.

OneFamiliarFace
2008-08-14, 09:19 PM
The problem is that I've asked him a couple times and his only answer has just been "don't kill each other, please," which doesn't really help my character.

This sounds like you answered your own question. If the DM doesn't say it is wrong, then you are good to go. (And I argue for stricter 3.5 paladin morality :p).

If the Necromancer is threatening you, then just take the moral high ground and know you could kill him if you wanted, because you have the forces of good on your side. Don't tell him so. It's good enough to just know it. Unless this player is roleplaying well, it sounds like he may be setting up to backstab you at some point, so I would recommend getting the other players on your side by not creating party conflict and not being snobby about it. If it is too serious, then maybe talk to the DM, because while PCs may scuffle every once in awhile, they shouldn't be out to kill people.

In the meantime, Undead have a lot of weaknesses. And it is reasonable to assume the Evil Warlord might use them, so I wouldn't see any problem in your stocking up a few useful magic items that might be good against undead or in boosting your turning ability. Also, buy a contingency Gentle Repose :-p. That way, you can't be raised as undead.

Occasional Sage
2008-08-14, 09:26 PM
*snip*
Also, buy a contingency Gentle Repose :-p. That way, you can't be raised as undead.

Oh yes, I'd forgotten that threat.

Seriously, this guy is *not* acting like he wants to be part of the group that the rest of you want. He's being selfish by putting his own fun ahead of the group having fun. The two should not incompatible by a LONG stretch, but he's creating situations where they are. Any idea why?

This isn't the behavior of anybody I'd call a friend of mine, frankly.

Fawsto
2008-08-14, 10:00 PM
That one is itchy to say the least...

The Dread Necromancer actions are contrary to everything a Paladin (even being a Grey Guard. yikes) believes. He is evil, he admits being evil, he does nothing to redeem himself, he likes being evil, he does a lot of evil during the night, he RAISES THE DEAD FOR PERSONAL PROFIT! Damn it, kill Orcus impersonation right away, please?

Now, seriously, don't do that if your group is not PvP friendly or if you or your friends are "passionate players" who will not digest a character's death all too well (trust me, I am a Paladin fanboy who does not like seeing his character die due to other players' evil characters). All options presented in this thread are valious, but keep your attenction in the ones that do not involve puting up with the situation, ok? This will only cause more and more distress.

I would prefer a more RP solution, but it will, unfortunatly, end in a face off. In a game session, reply that death threat with some rightous speech. Do that but prepare a good fighting strategy for yourself before it. Walk around with some Death protection spells and stuff for removing ability drain, and most important, buy yourself some rightous poison, I mean, ravages, for some ability damage from yourself (I mean, if you can get this sort of stuff). I bet his fortitude isn't all that high, so you can spam some "ravaged" arrows at him at any sign of hostility. Be prepared, he is a Necro indeed, but still a caster. It will not be an easy fight, probably.

Back to the RP. Be what you are: a Paladin! Do not martyrize your character in this situation, it will only bring him more options to criple you. Be firm. Every time he does something evil, warn him, punish him or stop him. By the time he is well warned, serve him a nice Smite right on the face, specially when he runs out of spells, so he will be able to understand what is to be the "weaker part". Then, while he is KOd, proceed with the good and old mark of justice. Now he is at your hands. Just be sure to not push it too much. Otherwise you will be the one anoying someone this time.

Good luck

Aquillion
2008-08-15, 01:36 PM
Since when is a clearly innocent person going to be executed?

Yes, innocent people have been executed, but I don't know of even one who was known at the time to clearly have been innocent.

Edit: Also, you're wrong. Lawfulness is not "the ends justify the means" thinking at all. It is "the means must be consistent regardless of the ends" thinking.It's a theoretical. The point is, a truly lawful character will uphold the law even in situations where it the immediate actions involved might not seem like the most just alternative, on the principal of consistency.

Ergo, they feel that the goal of consistency (and the resulting overall benefits to society as a whole) justify occasionally treating individuals unjustly in the short term. This is "ends justifies the means" thinking however you look at it.

Tengu_temp
2008-08-15, 01:40 PM
Lawful != "upholds the laws at all cost"

AstralFire
2008-08-15, 01:43 PM
Incoming alignment debate that indirectly shows exactly why the full double axis as existed in 3.x was a bad idea in 3... 2..

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 01:47 PM
Even in second edition Lawful Good chracters had a certain amount of Leeway.

Paladins of Tyr in Realms, God of Justice, will not uphold unjust laws (defined as inconsistant with rest of legal code) however they may be required to uphold very unfair laws that are, nonetheless, just. Faiths and Pantheons.

In any case, paladins don't usually go with significantly Evil laws. By Exalted deeds rules, faced with choice between Evil but legal, and non-evil but illegal, paladins are required to choose the non-evil choice.

AstralFire
2008-08-15, 01:49 PM
Even in second edition Lawful Good chracters had a certain amount of Leeway.

Paladins of Tyr in Realms, God of Justice, will not uphold unjust laws (defined as inconsistant with rest of legal code) however they may be required to uphold very unfair laws that are, nonetheless, just. Faiths and Pantheons.

In any case, paladins don't usually go with significantly Evil laws. By Exalted deeds rules, faced with choice between Evil but legal, and non-evil but illegal, paladins are required to choose the non-evil choice.

Well, I was more nodding at "well if Lawful doesn't mean THAT, then how is Chaotic Good truly differentiated" etc. That's always inevitable after someone explains why Lawful doesn't mean you have to uphold dumb laws, or why Chaotic doesn't mean that you don't do things rationally or morally.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 01:50 PM
and backtrack to 2nd ed and you will see Alignment in all its ugly glory: chaotic Neutral defined as insane, Neutral defined as Must side with underdog, whatever alignment underdo is, and so on.

3rd ed at least gave us a slightly better Neutral, slightly less mad CN, and, in some WOTC published supplements, notion that being Evil is not automaticaly a death-sentence worthy crime, nor does it mean they are unable to behave in a Good way toward friends/allies (evil toward most others)

AstralFire
2008-08-15, 01:54 PM
and backtrack to 2nd ed and you will see Alignment in all its ugly glory: chaotic Neutral defined as insane, Neutral defined as Must side with underdog, whatever alignment underdo is, and so on.

3rd ed at least gave us a slightly better Neutral, slightly less mad CN, and, in some WOTC published supplements, notion that being Evil is not automaticaly a death-sentence worthy crime, nor does it mean they are unable to behave in a Good way toward friends/allies (evil toward most others)

I was more looking at 4E there as the improvement, not 2E. 3E's system is more realistic and player usable, but at the expense of making these apparently vital elements of the multiverse completely undefinable and almost random.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 01:55 PM
In 2nd ed, Chaotic had a number of variants. Chaotic Good meant very individualist, hates being told what to do, does not trust Authority.

Chaotic as a philosophy, on Law/Chaos axis, meant doesn't believe your actions have wide ranging effect, believe nations should be anarchistic, and that the individual is in control of their own destiny. Chaotic nonphilosphers were more pragmatic, able to accept benefit of order to society.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 01:57 PM
Law and Evil got some detailed lists of strongly Lawful and Evil acts in Fiendish codex 2. maybe its harder to be Chaotic or good than Lawful or Evil, since acts had a rating, and it took atonement to get rid of that rating.

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-15, 02:02 PM
Incoming alignment debate that indirectly shows exactly why the full double axis as existed in 3.x was a bad idea in 3... 2..

Yeah, no. I give up. I've had this argument enough times (with Aquillion in particular, among others) that my position and reasoning should be well-understood by now. There's no reason to keep repeating the same stuff indefinitely.

I think the one thing we can take away from all of this is that alignments as role-playing straightjackets, regardless of class, are a terrible idea, if only because it's impossible to get a group of people to agree on exactly what the terms mean and how they should apply. Take for example the fact that I don't even respect a "greyguard" as lawful good at all (and would call such a person out as at the very least dishonorable for even looking for ways to sidestep his/her code).

So ... alignment system: still generally a bad idea. But that wasn't news, was it? :smalltongue:

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 02:10 PM
Idea is good. And 2nd , 3rd, and 4th eds have all had paragraphs saying its not Supposed to be a roleplaying straitjacket.

Grey Guard was, I think, intended to be for "jack bauer" type players: Torture the bad guy to get the info to save the world. Common trope.

alignment debates are only bad if they become uncivil, or if people refuse to accept WoTC sources as authorative.

While I'm guessing its been do before, one can uses sources to show example, or exceptions, to views about what the Chaotic or Lawful can be.

Individualism is supposed some by Races of the Wild description of chaotic Good elven society.
Anarchism is supposed by the description in Dragon Compendium (not quite such a direct source) of Diaboli CG society. (maybe Mystara setting books would confirm it) However, as Outsiders with Chaotic subtype, they exemplify extremly chaotic, benevolent societies. Most Chaotic ones in D&D are not anarchies (even benevolent ones)

AstralFire
2008-08-15, 02:18 PM
My only issue with the double axis thing is that it seems to boil down to a vague inner philosophy and when you get down to it, seems like:

LG, NG, CG = Good
LN = I AM COMPUTRON
CN = Prettytacogod! Wheeeeeeeeeee!
TN = Nothing matters. I like my coffee mellow brown like my soul.
LE, NE = Redeemable (sometimes), rational evil
CE = MURDEROUSTACOGOD *slaughter*

The lack of consistency makes it hard for me to believe that these directly correspond to elemental building blocks of the universe - that there is an essential 'chaotic goodness'.

Essentially, alignment -has- to be something of a straitjacket for it to make sense to me as any sort of thing intrinsic to the universe. 3E, by loosening the strings inadvertently made it kind of fall apart, hence the LG, G, UA, E, CE spectrum we got in 4E.

Tengu_temp
2008-08-15, 02:24 PM
Alignment is a relic. Most other games went away with it ages ago.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 02:25 PM
I saw it as partly philosophy, partly personality traits. People who really like orderly lives, file everything they own neatly, are exceptionally honest, etc can be LN without being Computron.

In same way CG, or even CN can be "Don't Tread on Me" without being craaazy. My view was that CN could be accounted for at least partly by near-fallen CG types "moderately ruthless rebels" who are too good to be bad, and too bad to be good, and enemies of tyranny.

As for the more extreme types, they are embodied by outsiders. Maybe novels with Outsiders in, or the Planescape setting, can give rough idea of what the stronger alignments were intended to be, and what's changed over time.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 05:02 PM
Its handy shorthand, but the "its not a straitjacket" line should probablybe committed to memory by players if it is not to lead to playing cliches.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 05:08 PM
I've seen the What Alignment is Batman Pic, but my view is thats more a matter of different writers, since each writer might do Batman in a different, moderately consistant way, and its consistant behaviour that determines your alignment. How you behave most of the time, not occasional abberations.

AstralFire
2008-08-15, 05:10 PM
Hamish, who the hell are you responding to? I didn't think this forum had an ignore feature (and I'm pretty sure I've never ignored anyone) but I am getting very confused right now.

hamishspence
2008-08-15, 05:13 PM
Sorry, was responding to arguement that alignment is a relic with refutations, of likely arguments, since have seen arguments before. Probably should not have put out so many posts. While I would agree it has flaws, I feel they tend to be exaggerated somewhat.

LordMalrog
2008-08-17, 06:20 PM
OK, please don't think this is not a heavy pvp group. As you know from the Malrog conquest campaign, we infight like there was no tommorow. I think the DM just wants us to work together for once. Not like a team, but just people who know eachother. Tenrai (my guy) is of coarse fine with this. All of our characters have differant motivations. Tenrai is the classic revenge, Kilgrim (The gray guard in question) is looking to vanquesh evil, while our party necromancer seeks power. Right now we all have a common enemy and we work together to whipe hiim from the face of the kingdom. And in our delicate situation the last thing we need is infighting.

TempusCCK
2008-08-17, 07:09 PM
Eh, were I the Greyguard I would follow the Dread Necro around, watching him, making him come along on the missions. There would be no torturing, he wouldn't bring people in to be tortured in front of a paladin, and if worse come sto worst, you let him torture and fall asleep, then just coup de grace his punk ass. He's a caster, no Fort save to speak of.

LordMalrog
2008-08-18, 12:47 AM
Eh, were I the Greyguard I would follow the Dread Necro around, watching him, making him come along on the missions. There would be no torturing, he wouldn't bring people in to be tortured in front of a paladin, and if worse come sto worst, you let him torture and fall asleep, then just coup de grace his punk ass. He's a caster, no Fort save to speak of.

You forgot, necromancer... they don't sleep much... and he has a very high security room... oh and did i mention, that if the group fights to much their heads will soon adorn the lovely mantel of the evil dictators wall?

kamikasei
2008-08-18, 05:02 AM
You forgot, necromancer... they don't sleep much...

Unless he's already undead or something, he should be sleeping/resting as much as any full caster.

Philistine
2008-08-18, 06:26 AM
Given:

I am currently in a campaign based around, in short, a resistance group trying to overthrow an evil warlord. It's been progressing smoothely, except for one little detail: I am a paladin/grayguard, and a party member is a VERY evil dread necromancer. We are constantly at odds, but that's only half of the problem. The other problem is that I'm a paladin, and he does horrible things to people at night which are audible throughout our secret base...
And also:

...the player behind the dread necro has openly told me, both meta and IC, that if I were to die (and he hinted that it might be by his hand), that he would be raised as a death knight or something...
And furthermore:

... The player, like I was saying, constantly plays evil, regardless of the group's alignment, and if he plays good, he plays a Miko-reminiscent paladin. Every character he makes is a carbon copy of the last one: talks like a badly designed anime character, looks like he was dipped in a vat of black ink (i'm not kidding about this one), overconfident as hell, and a boring backstory that just reinforces the fact that he's irredeemably evil with truly awful writing....

EDIT: Although commenting on his Miko-like paladins (if you want a point of referance for what they're like, combine Miko with the power-playing half ogre with a spiked chain) while playing a grayguard may seem hypocritical, I tried to differentiate my actions from his, i.e. not regarding everyone not of my clergy as heretics, only fighting evil creeps (he goes far enough as to go after chaotic and neutral good while playing a paladin), etc.

I'd have to go with the people asking, "Why are you gaming with such an utter tool?" Despite his m4d CharOp skillz, the guy sounds like a genuinely terrible player. And no matter how long you've known the guy, he doesn't sound like much of a friend either, based on the behavior you've described. (Of course, he could be the World's Greatest Dude as long as you keep him away from the gaming table, in which case it's more complicated.) Sometimes you just have to know when to walk away.

Aquillion
2008-08-18, 10:43 AM
Despite his m4d CharOp skillz, the guy sounds like a genuinely terrible player.Someone who is playing a Dread Necromancer does not have m4d CharOp skillz.

ThanatosOmnis
2008-08-22, 12:57 PM
Okay. Speaking as the necromancer, i just have a few things to say.
1. my area of the base is sound-proof, dark and none of the other party members have ever actually entered it. (though the fact that each enterance is warded against everyone but me might have something to do with that)
2. i've never said that i would raise the paladin. in fact, the corpse of the paladin and the assassian were the two corpses that i promised never to touch (and i am LE, so i keep my promises)
3. i don't play evil too my friends off, i play evil because i'm good at it.
4. my doesn't inflict bodily harm on my enemies, it is purely psycological.

any responses?

kamikasei
2008-08-22, 01:09 PM
What are your goals? Why are you fighting the evil overlord? Why are you with the party? How do you act towards them? Do you commit evil behind their backs or are you upfront about it on the grounds that they need you anyway?

Aquillion
2008-08-22, 02:03 PM
And do you, in fact, have m4d CharOp skillz?

ThanatosOmnis
2008-08-26, 09:10 AM
Ok, now that my grandfather's funeral is over, i have a bit of free time to answer those questions.
1. my goal is simply to research the "sun-risen" of the campaign and to (eventually) establish a necropolis.
2. i fight the evil overlord to help those that i consider my friend (the assassian) and his allies (the paladin), as well as to further my own personal knowaldge and create an environment where my necropolis won't be attacked every day by intolerant evil dictators
3. i am with the party because it is mutually beneficial. The party can deal with a few powerful figures, but wouldn't be able to fight off an army. I can fight off an army with my own army of zombies, skeletons, etc.; but i can't deal with the few high powered enemy generals.
4. i am nice towards everybody(for the most part), even those who would see me dead (or at least incapacitated)
5. I've always been up-front about my methods, which my guy doesn't view as evil, he views them as necessary (if a bit unpleasant)

Also, i didn't read the entire thread, so i don't know if this was mentioned before, but Staven always complains about something when we play, and we had to abort several campaigns because he wouldn't stop bitching about them.

InkEyes
2008-08-26, 09:31 AM
Ok, now that my grandfather's funeral is over, i have a bit of free time to answer those questions.
1. my goal is simply to research the "sun-risen" of the campaign and to (eventually) establish a necropolis.
2. i fight the evil overlord to help those that i consider my friend (the assassian) and his allies (the paladin), as well as to further my own personal knowaldge and create an environment where my necropolis won't be attacked every day by intolerant evil dictators
3. i am with the party because it is mutually beneficial. The party can deal with a few powerful figures, but wouldn't be able to fight off an army. I can fight off an army with my own army of zombies, skeletons, etc.; but i can't deal with the few high powered enemy generals.
4. i am nice towards everybody(for the most part), even those who would see me dead (or at least incapacitated)
5. I've always been up-front about my methods, which my guy doesn't view as evil, he views them as necessary (if a bit unpleasant)

Also, i didn't read the entire thread, so i don't know if this was mentioned before, but Staven [I]always[I] complains about something when we play, and we had to abort several campaigns because he wouldn't stop bitching about them.

I think in this case, subtle about your more evil deed is best (at lest around the gray guard); it will give him no reason to complain and you will have no reason to fight with him. If you need to, ask your DM if it's okay to modify your character and max your bluff, it will at least give you some sort of backup plan if the gray guard does discover you're still torturing people. Try to find a more secluded space to torture enemies and if possible try to make it soundproof. Stop talking about raising the paladin as a death knight-- and if this was a one-time throwaway joke I'd recommend telling the gray guard that, because it obviously didn't come across that way to him.

As far as the gray guard goes, I can only make a judgment based on what he's posted about his character in this campaign. I'd say it's reasonable for a gray guard to express concern over the methods your evil character uses. If you're frustrated with his complaints the two of you (and probably your DM) should sit down and lay out the problems that are causing the fights. Find an agreeable middle ground and try to play your characters in a way that doesn't cause as much friction. I say "as much friction" because some will occur because: lawful good holy warrior + evil necromatic spellcaster = inter-party conflict. In the future, the two of you should try making characters with the alignment and temperament of the rest party in mind if you want a group that doesn't fight at all.

ThanatosOmnis
2008-08-26, 10:02 PM
I can't speak for staven, but i think that all our problems have now been resolved. he now has a dwarven kingdom and an army (is it a bad thing when a necromancer is providing the health care for your military?) and, being the LE dude that i am, i now respect him enough to listen to his requests (it doesn't hurt that i was instrumental in his ascent to the throne) Don't forget- if you lose your limbs in the upcoming war. . . i'll replace them for free (all limbs donated by your enemies and embalmed by me)