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  1. - Top - End - #271
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    Deathless (although they might have been Eberron-style rather than BoED style).

    Eye of Fear & Flame (BoVD).

    Yes, the books have flaws- but they're still the main sources for the general definitions of Evil acts (and good ones).

    And which "magical evil-torture spells" are you thinking of? BoED is pretty clear that torture is evil in itself.
    Whoops, forgot about the monster, yes. There was that.

    But, anyway, torture. Page 34, the ravages and afflictions. They aren't exactly spells (that I picked up from having them described to me admittedly), but they inflict both physical and psychological harm upon anything evil, and are explicitly like poisons but good, except their effects actually go far beyond any possible poison. Like the one that causes the creature to starve to death, or the one that causes, and I quote, "insatiable sexual desire" in something while simultaneously, somehow, rendering them unable to act upon it. And no, I did not make that up, it's an affliction called "Raging Desire".

    So, yeah. A bunch of "good" tools that are not unlike poisons (except magic) for some really messed-up forms of what is pretty blatantly torture, from, as mentioned, a book that says that both torture and poison are always terrible things. That's not going into all the bad things, but I think it exemplifies them rather effectively.

    Edit: In addition to my point that the contradictions in this make taking anything in the books at face value somewhat risky at best, there's that the BoVD only has the material appearing alongside two other books that are... Hm. Not "obscure", but... Well, none of them are prominent enough in the series to imply that they have major influences elsewhere. BoVD basically gets a cameo appearance and I'm still a bit unsure about BoED's being around at all, which does not lead me to believe that they play major roles in the overarching morality of the universe.

    Also, while I've been rather harsh on those two books, I'm not saying that they're completely without value. They do get some things right; however, the amount of things they get wrong, at least in my opinion, especially when it comes to things like the outright moral contradictions described above, makes trying to take moral guidelines from them a bad idea. As I said, it outright endorses the various magical torments and tortures (despite saying that all torture is bad); that doesn't seem like a source you should be readily accepting the moral advice of.
    Last edited by Kojiro; 2011-08-09 at 04:31 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #272
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    hamishspence's Avatar

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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    They are a bit dodgy- i think they were intended to represent the various nasty things a deity can inflict on "villains", without actually compromising the deity's standing.

    It's a bit difficult to go into detail, thanks to forum rules.

    That said, just because a substance or spell is "good" doesn't mean it can't be misused.

    Holy water is "good" but tying a vampire down and dripping it over the vampire in order to coerce them into divulging info, is torture- Evil.

    The Holy Word spell is Good subtyped- yet it can be used to murder Neutral people.

    And so on.

    same principle should apply. If the subtance is not used to coerce info, or as "punishment for crimes" but purely to incapacitate an enemy in battle, it doesn't really qualify as torture. At least for ravages- afflictions are more iffy- but I believe there's some precedent for deities using them.

    Poison being evil wasn't invented in BoED though- it goes right back to the earliest editions of D&D. I'm told Gygax probably came up with the idea after seeing just how much of a game-breaker it was.
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  3. - Top - End - #273
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    Quote Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
    I would disagree with that conclusion. If you allow major Evil to happen because the only way to stop it would be an Evil act and you don't want to treat the purity of your soul as a commodity, I can't see how you can remain Good. I would definitely expect a Good character to act.
    Whatever your motivations, if your actions are Evil, then you are not Good. I would definitely expect a Good character to take a hit to alignment for doing so.

  4. - Top - End - #274
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    There's a certain amount of grey area.

    A Good character can commit very occasional Evil acts and still be Good.

    A character who routinely commits minor Evil acts (like casting Evil spells) but only with the best of intentions, may be able to maintain a Neutral alignment.

    A character who commits one extremely major Evil act, or starts routinely committing fairly major ones, is likely to drop straight to Evil regardless of their motivations.
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  5. - Top - End - #275
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    There's a certain amount of grey area.

    A Good character can commit very occasional Evil acts and still be Good.

    A character who routinely commits minor Evil acts (like casting Evil spells) but only with the best of intentions, may be able to maintain a Neutral alignment.

    A character who commits one extremely major Evil act, or starts routinely committing fairly major ones, is likely to drop straight to Evil regardless of their motivations.
    A neutral character who doesn't commit evil towards others but uses Evil spells when those spells best solve a problem should be fine. If a character was neutral and not leaning towards good or evil why should they care that someone somewhere is saying the spell is evil?
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  6. - Top - End - #276
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    Possibly because of the idea that "evil magic corrupts".

    Spells having the [Evil] tag may have less to do with "what people say" than "they invoke the force of Evil when cast".

    In PHB, it points out (for turning/rebuking undead) "even if the cleric is neutral, channelling negative energy is an evil act and channelling positive energy is good."

    LN clerics of Wee Jas can only channel negative energy, not positive- so might have to be careful to avoid overdoing the evil acts.
    Last edited by hamishspence; 2011-08-15 at 10:09 AM.
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  7. - Top - End - #277
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    I think the real problem here may be that real world morality is being applied to a world where killing monsters is a daily occurrence that not many people are bothered by. I wouldn't doubt that most adventurers, or people in general, are raised believing that killing things recognized as evil is perfectly ok and acceptable. Most probably can't think about it objectively because they were raised in a way that justifies it and thus don't question if its good or not. Evil=makeitdead

    this sounded much better in my head...
    A wall was here. Now it is dust.

    A tower rose here. Now it is fallen.

    An army fought here. Now it is dead.

    Chances are, a wizard did it.

  8. - Top - End - #278
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    May depend on the setting, and the edition.

    In some "monsters" are often on diplomatic terms with "player races". Eberron, and Planescape, are like this.

    3.5 in general has tended to move away from "monsters are there to be killed on sight" with orcs and goblins being an accepted part of some cities (Cityscape mentions this).
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  9. - Top - End - #279
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    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    I'm in the True Neutral camp. He's never seemed particularly Lawful or Chaotic, and has shown both good tendencies and a willingness to commit evil acts (ie strip 399). However, after the Soul Splice and that message the deva wanted Roy to deliver to V, it's a crap shoot.
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  10. - Top - End - #280
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    Quote Originally Posted by WickedWizard17 View Post
    I'm in the True Neutral camp. He's never seemed particularly Lawful or Chaotic, and has shown both good tendencies and a willingness to commit evil acts (ie strip 399). However, after the Soul Splice and that message the deva wanted Roy to deliver to V, it's a crap shoot.
    Huh? Why would you shoot feces?

    I'm in the True Neutral camp too, V is the everything in one being. (except in class. The everything class is commoner. )
    Last edited by Mutant Sheep; 2011-08-16 at 10:53 PM.
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  11. - Top - End - #281
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    Default Re: Is Varsuuvius Lawful, Chaotic or True Neutral?

    This thread has long since abandoned the issue of Vaarsuvius' alignment and since strayed into the usual "is it morally justified to do Evil acts for Good ends?" territory. Which, as most of you should know, falls under the Inappropriate Topic category.

    Also, V is True Neutral.

    Thread closed.
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