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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    Which has nothing to do with "Evil/Good".

    Just lawful application of force.

    Law.
    Nope. Law sets rules on the force that you can use, or not. But the personal reason still matter on your "alignmeter". If you have to use lethal force and you use it just because you have to, it's just fine for Good or Neutral characters. If you enjoy using lethal force, or you kill a person that pose no real threat to you other than "distract you from your researches"...

    But honestly, I'm not putting my heart on this debate. This is a game story, not real world. In a medieval setting. A fantasy one. I'm surprised that Vaarsuvius didn't charmed Kubota into write a confession and drown himself.

    Mind that half of this forum would gladly kill a person in the real world to prevent twenty pages of a trial, if only they could avoid legal consequences.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    Nope. Law sets rules on the force that you can use, or not. But the personal reason still matter on your "alignmeter". If you have to use lethal force and you use it just because you have to, it's just fine for Good or Neutral characters. If you enjoy using lethal force, or you kill a person that pose no real threat to you other than "distract you from your researches"...

    But honestly, I'm not putting my heart on this debate. This is a game story, not real world. In a medieval setting. A fantasy one. I'm surprised that Vaarsuvius didn't charmed Kubota into write a confession and drown himself.

    Mind that half of this forum would gladly kill a person in the real world to prevent twenty pages of a trial, if only they could avoid legal consequences.
    To be fair: Half the forum is evil, a quarter is nuetral, and a quarter is good.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    Mind that half of this forum would gladly kill a person in the real world to prevent twenty pages of a trial, if only they could avoid legal consequences.
    But what if the trial were to somehow involve Harvey Birdman, Denny Crane, Alan Shore, Lionel Hutz and Two-Face with a guest appearance from Perry Mason?

    Who in the real world would possibly want to stop that trial from happening?

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    It does, in terms of "reasonable force". If you have a prisoner, the amount of force needed to subdue him is... zero. And the risk by the law enforcer to subdue him is zero, too.
    I don't think that's the distinction. I think the distinction is in Elan's acceptance of the surrender.

    Kubota doesn't think he should die, or we assume he doesn't. Elan does, or we assume he does. By the terms of Kubota's surrender, and by Elan's acceptance of the surrender, they have agreed to settle their differences in court.

    Saying "okay, I agree to take this to a magistrate as long as you don't fight back" to fool someone into allowing himself to be tied up, then taking advantage of that to knife them in the back, is not good - it's evil. If Miko had accepted a surrender from Belkar in the storeroom, then chopped his head off after tying him up, she would have fallen there and then.

    Now, there is the added complication that Vaarsuvius may not be bound by Kubota's surrender to Elan. However, it's strongly implied that Miko would have fallen by killing Belkar in the second panel of 285, even though Belkar deserves death, has not surrendered, and is not prisoner, by which we may conclude that in the Ootsiverse, killing someone helpless is likely always evil.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Skaarg View Post
    I have to say though, when the evil act is murder of a helpless prisoner, even if you might not quite be in the evil boat yet, you're out of the good boat.
    We've been here before:

    #0399

    «would it not just be wiser to execute all three of them and be done with it?»

    Haley countered that with "Sh'heah, right" and then went to explain why that would not solve the problem. Being wrong or evil wasn't one of the reasons not to do it.

    I didn't see any member of the order complaining about killing the prisoners per se, just about how pointless that would be. And they didn't take them to court either, they were sent to life emprisonment without trial. OOTS have acted has law enforcers and judges before.

    V has been on this boat for long, it's not just the fatigue. This wasn't really out of character, menacing Elan yes.
    Avatar: ruthless Parson (Erfworld).

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    V has gone freakin nuts.
    I would be a procrastinator, but I keep putting it off.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    Again, avatars don't affect personal views.
    True, true. Still "the apparel oft proclaims the man. " as the Bard wrote.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cthulwho View Post
    But what if the trial were to somehow involve Harvey Birdman, Denny Crane, Alan Shore, Lionel Hutz and Two-Face with a guest appearance from Perry Mason?

    Who in the real world would possibly want to stop that trial from happening?
    Needs Matt Murdock and Jennifer Walters.

    And Phoenix Wright.
    Remember how I was wishing for the peace of oblivion a minute ago?

    Yeah. That hasn't exactly changed with more knowledge of the situation. -Security Chief Victor Jones, formerly of the UESC Marathon.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    On the one hand, V is clearly not bound by Elan's promises, his action in and of itself is Neutral at worst. However, the way he threatened Elan immediately afterwards was clearly meant to imply that V is most definitely going off the deep end and is rapidly approaching CE status. There's even a chance V might be there already, but I doubt it.

    I'd say V's alignment by the beginning of Book 2 was TN, became CN soon after this whole refugee plotline began, and is now screaming towards CE. Whether or not V turns it around is yet to be seen.

    And by the way, were I in Vaarsuvius' position, I would've killed Kubota even if I couldn't escape legal consequences. Kubota had just finished explaining how he was going to escape justice and go on to kill who knows how many more people. How many Therkla's must die before someone bites the bullet and takes the law into their own hands, and damn the torpedoes? In my opinion, one is too many.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by teratorn
    I didn't see any member of the order complaining about killing the prisoners per se, just about how pointless that would be. And they didn't take them to court either, they were sent to life emprisonment without trial. OOTS have acted has law enforcers and judges before.
    Although really, until V suggested it, claiming to also be playing Belkar's advocate at the time, none of the Order seemed to think of it it as an option (and Roy wasn't even there). When it was raised they didn't really have a chance to object before Haley pointed out the practical problem with V's plan.

    They didn't send them to jail for life imprisonment without trial either. If I'm not mistaken Elan's plan was only to put them on ice till their current missions were concluded and they could come up with a better plan with how to deal with them.
    Last edited by Dr. Cthulwho; 2008-10-01 at 12:14 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest View Post
    Actually thats covered, paladins are allowed to kill, not murder. Its a hard distinction, but there is an actual distinction, you just have to buy a source boko to get it


    The system isn't bad itself, its just its delivery.
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    I'll reference again the slayer of Dromiel, who presents a class accessable by paladins, and it excplicitly states that they may act, when occassion arises, as assassins. Assassins, by definition of the term, are those who engage in assassination, which is defined as murder in all cases. Paladins may never, ever commit evil deeds without falling, yet here, a situation is given where they may murder. May not commit evil+may sometimes murder=not all murder is equivalently and blindly equal.
    Me: I'd get the paladin to help, but we might end up with a kid that believes in fairy tales.
    DM: aye, and it's not like she's been saved by a mysterious little girl and a band of real live puppets from a bad man and worse step-sister to go live with the faries in the happy land.
    Me: Yeah, a knight in shining armour might just bring her over the edge.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    Elan has still not retracted his threat to tell Hinjo.
    How is telling Hinjo the truth a threat to V?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    Killing Elan AFTER that will not remove the obstacle.
    That's because Elan is not an obstacle. Neither was Kubota, really, but V somehow decided that was all he was.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    So if V wants to kill Elan for tattling, especially since high INT is high logical acuity, he would do it now.
    The same logical acuity that has left the elf severely sleep deprived -- itself having negative effects on judgment -- for how long now?

    Forget V's smoke and mirrors arguments for having killed Kubota -- truly logical thinking would have realized how poorly the action would be received by the other members of his group (including Haley). It would also have lead to the realization that the act would make V's teammates less likely to trust or cooperate with the wizard.

    Of course, this is the same elf that couldn't remember Blackwing's name even as late as strip 440, the last time we see the bird, acknowledged only in dire need. Usually, the raven only becomes involved as a result of Haley's prompting -- otherwise, it is beneath V's notice.

    Blackwing, or "Bird-That-Miss-Starshine-Named" as V calls the raven, demonstrates the logical consequences of treating other inviduals as nothing more than either tools or obstacles.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    Your proposition he will is not supported by either fact or inference of such.
    You'll find I offered no such proposition. Elan offers less distraction to the mage than either V's conscience or the consequences of his actions, and V makes it clear how such distractions will be handled. You might think it's a bluff, but V's also the sort that believes in vengeance from beyond the grave.

    Quote Originally Posted by teratorn View Post
    We've been here before:

    #0399

    «would it not just be wiser to execute all three of them and be done with it?»

    Haley countered that with "Sh'heah, right" and then went to explain why that would not solve the problem. Being wrong or evil wasn't one of the reasons not to do it.
    The expressions displayed by Haley and Elan in the tenth panel, to say nothing of Haley's comment in the eighth, say otherwise. V's observation that he was representing the halfling's viewpoint was just another way to say, "Okay, it's evil, but is there any other reason it's a bad idea?"

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Its probably been said before, but I'm sure Rich mentioned something about V's wife/husband showing up. Perhaps she/he will be able to pull him/her back from the brink... hope so

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    assassination being evil goes right back to 3rd ed: just hiring an assassin is "not a good act" a term they only use for what, in 3rd ed, would be an evil act, like animating undead.

    Closest thing to a solution is looking at the term: Its a targeted killing of a public figure, especially a political one. Exalted deeds says explicitly that Sneak Attack is not automatically evil in description of rogue. So, maybe, this public figure would be one that you can target normally. An uber-evil creature, such as a polymorphed dragon ruling a city.

    The number of these in Faerun, and maybe other settings, is pretty high, so, maybe, Slayer's "assassinations" are focussed heavily on uber-evil infiltrators of society: fiends with alter self ability, for example. the Angelic prestige classes put an high focus on targeting fiends, rather than just the mundanely evil.

    In fact, there are lines early in book which play this up: its the Big Threats game should be focussed on.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cthulwho View Post
    But what if the trial were to somehow involve Harvey Birdman, Denny Crane, Alan Shore, Lionel Hutz and Two-Face with a guest appearance from Perry Mason?

    Who in the real world would possibly want to stop that trial from happening?
    Ironsides, Matlock, and the two lawyers. Duh. ;)

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    It does, in terms of "reasonable force".
    What this means is that there are more excuses/reasons for killing when the victim is free and armed than when a helpless prisoner. It gives no support to any claim that killing the helpless prisoner is especially horrible. Either way somebody is dead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    But this is a real life case. OotS works in a fantasy, epic setting, where the value of human life is much lower.
    Largely irrelevant to the point at hand. Whether one steals $1000 or $10,000, one is still stealing.

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest
    by D&D rules, V commited an evil action.
    Nope. An unlawful action definitely. Evil, that's an entirely different story. The idea that he killed for convenience is a misreading. It had been an act of mercy not to kill Kubota earlier. V simply stopped granting mercy. [BED does say one should always be merciful, but quickly turns around and shows that "always" in fact means "almost always", which is also the D&D definition of "always evil".]

    Quote Originally Posted by Stormoverkrynn
    V in this case was willing to kill an active member of his party.
    V was entirely too willing to threaten to kill. However, there is the saying "threatened men live long lives." An extremely high percentage of threats do not get carried out.
    Essentially V was bluffing. He made the threat and Elan "called" it by not understanding it. So she had the choice to back down or kill, and chose to back down. So we have to rule V was not [yet?] willing to kill.
    Now we can hardly rule V innocent here. If V had scared Elan into attacking, a quite possible result, we would blame her for any resulting damage. So he is on distinctly shaky ground here. Those of us who don't like the idea of mage sliding to evil have to be quite worried. But so far there are at least grounds for hope.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew
    By the terms of Kubota's surrender, and by Elan's acceptance of the surrender, they have agreed to settle their differences in court.
    As has been noted, V is not bound by Elan's agreement. And by being chaotic, Elan is not particularly bound either. [Given that there was no formal agreement, a lawful wouldn't be that bound either.]
    Surrender does not carry with it any binding restrictions on the other side. You have surrendered, you are property, to be used as desired. What surrender does is eliminate a large number of the moral grounds for harming you. You are not trying to hurt someone, and are not trying to escape. That makes it much harder to find grounds for just cutting your throat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew
    Saying "okay, I agree to take this to a magistrate as long as you don't fight back" to fool someone into allowing himself to be tied up, then taking advantage of that to knife them in the back, is not good - it's evil.
    Chaotic yes. Evil, that depends on the death, not the technical details about how.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew
    If Miko had accepted a surrender from Belkar in the storeroom, then chopped his head off after tying him up, she would have fallen there and then.

    it's strongly implied that Miko would have fallen by killing Belkar in the second panel of 285, even though Belkar deserves death, has not surrendered, and is not prisoner,
    That seems the inferior reading. V defends Belkar, not on any grounds like Miko's attack would be evil, but by saying she hates Miko more. Roy denies it is a matter of good or evil [which here implies that the good act would have been to dice Belkar]. And in 286 we learn that Belkar's idea was dangerously flawed. So assuming Miko would have fallen is very much just an assumption.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shatteredtower
    How is telling Hinjo the truth a threat to V?
    Hinjo is lawful and thus he has a very high possibility of trying to arrest V for murder. At the least, he is going to investigate, and annoy V, taking time from his research. From a purely personal view, Hinjo will likely cause V more trouble than Kubota would have. V could have just continued the research all thru the trial and beyond. It is the fleet and the rest of the party that get any benefit from the killing. [which meets some of the standards for a good action according to many theories].


    Quote Originally Posted by Shatteredtower
    truly logical thinking would have realized how poorly the action would be received by the other members of his group (including Haley). It would also have lead to the realization that the act would make V's teammates less likely to trust or cooperate with the wizard.
    So do you think V really values this?

    Quote Originally Posted by teretorn
    #0399
    «would it not just be wiser to execute all three of them and be done with it?»

    Haley countered that with "Sh'heah, right" and then went to explain why that would not solve the problem. Being wrong or evil wasn't one of the reasons not to do it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shatteredtower
    The expressions displayed by Haley and Elan in the tenth panel, to say nothing of Haley's comment in the eighth, say otherwise.
    Quite the contrary actually. In the 8th, Haley is talking about soul binding as evil. By contrast, she has not said that killing Nale & friends is evil. So the implication is that killing the prisoners is not evil, merely a bad idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shatteredtower
    V's observation that he was representing the halfling's viewpoint was just another way to say, "Okay, it's evil, but is there any other reason it's a bad idea?"
    V's comment was "intellectual discussion", indicating his distaste is for Belkar's limited brainpower. However her question does not concede the action is evil at all. Rather it also asks "Is the action actually evil in this case?" [Belkar's approval of such an idea does not mean it is evil, but it is hardly a good sign after all.] Haley's failure to reject the idea as evil is not an absolute sign she agrees the idea isn't evil, but since she starts talking about effectiveness, one would assume that she at least has doubts on the point. One often starts with the solid argument and leaves the questionable points for later, if at all. When we add in that she does find something else evil, we have a decent case that the killing of the prisoners is not, of itself, an evil act.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    Chaotic yes. Evil, that depends on the death, not the technical details about how.
    To the contrary: an army with a policy of always accepting surrenders and then always backstabbing the prisoner would be perfectly lawful - lawful evil is still lawful. In any particular case, betraying a trust is evil, not chaotic.

    That seems the inferior reading. V defends Belkar, not on any grounds like Miko's attack would be evil, but by saying she hates Miko more. Roy denies it is a matter of good or evil [which here implies that the good act would have been to dice Belkar].
    I'm not sure why you mention Vaarsuvius and Roy; neither of them appears in the second panel of 285, and they are irrelevant to my argument. To clarify, my argument is this: getting Miko to fall is a major goal of Belkar's, and he seems to know the rules on it pretty well, so the fact that he wants her to kill him in that panel indicates that it will cause her to fall. Miko's colored "demon eyes" in that panel reinforce this. There is no indication elsewhere in the comic that Belkar is wrong about what would cause Miko to fall, and he's frequently right about the rules. His only error is about whether he would have been resurrected afterwards, and that has no bearing on whether killing him would have been an evil act.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    The idea that he killed for convenience is a misreading.
    How is the idea V killed for conveniance a misreading when she clearly states that was her reason for doing it, and then reiterates it when she tries to threaten (or bluff) Elan?

    That is "you've seen the steps I'll take to remove a distraction, so do you really want to become one yourself?"

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    I'm not sure why you mention Vaarsuvius and Roy; neither of them appears in the second panel of 285, and they are irrelevant to my argument. To clarify, my argument is this: getting Miko to fall is a major goal of Belkar's, and he seems to know the rules on it pretty well, so the fact that he wants her to kill him in that panel indicates that it will cause her to fall. Miko's colored "demon eyes" in that panel reinforce this. There is no indication elsewhere in the comic that Belkar is wrong about what would cause Miko to fall, and he's frequently right about the rules. His only error is about whether he would have been resurrected afterwards, and that has no bearing on whether killing him would have been an evil act.
    Weird as it feels to agree with David Argall, I think you're granting Belkar way too much insight here. He assumes that killing him would cause Miko to Fall. Short of Rich posting, "Yes, it would have," or another paladin falling from an identical action, we have no way of knowing whether he was right or wrong.
    I can think of no character in the entire comic I'm less inclined to consider an authority on moral issues.
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    "The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in the future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present--they are real." --Aral Vorkosigan

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Okay, my two copper pieces.

    My guess is that V is feeling frustration, shame, and loneliness.

    The frustation part is the obvious most surfaced emotion; his (and I've always thought of V as male, so sue me) reaction to the immediate circumstances. There's a quest and he's stuck on endless subplots. Every one else's priorities are occupied with trivialities. Really, what does the OotS owe the refugees of Azure City? For Elan and Durkon, it's a no-brainer. People need help and they're in a position to give it. For V, the help is meaningless if they fail to secure the Snarl. What does it matter if they save a bunch of refugees if the world gets destroyed or enslaved or whatever? So the conflict of priorities is clear...

    But I think it goes a little deeper than that. I also think that V is feeling some pretty intense shame. Shame that his magic wasn't enough to save Azure City. Shame that he's unable to use magic to find Haley. It's one failure after another at something that he excells at; and rather than admit that failure he's pushing harder and harder with the belief that if he can just succeed once with his magic then it will all be vindicated. Finding Haley isn't just to get the group together to save the world. It's proof that he is still an effective mage. Even the crack about Therkla's exp reflect this desperate need to get one more level higher to succeed.

    But underneath all that, I suspect that V is intensely lonely. The group is all the family that V connects with; even this "mate" of his was mentioned only once. Durkon we know has kin he wants to see. Elan makes friends with every NPC that he's not making saves against. Even Haley and Belkar associate with outsiders better than V does ( when Belkar's not spontaneously killing folks). But the splitting of the order, Roy's death, Haley's and Belkar's possible deaths, and his own self exile have left him utterly alone. Durkon and Elan have adjusted, working with Hinjo and Diego and Therkla. V can't. And the longer he is on the boat, the worse he feels. If it was just a matter of saving the world then V could simply leave at any of the cities and find new members.

    I think that V is, technically, evil in the sense that he no longer seems to have concern for the consequence of his actions, particularly the harm that may be caused by his actions. For some one desperate to reunite the Order, he was likewise apparently willing to kill Elan, a member of the Order! Not exactly logical or intelligent. V might be bluffling, but who knows? Not feeling remorse for his action; taking the immedately most expedient and ruthless action as suits his goals... really how is V much different than Belkar? Sure, Belkar takes enjoyment in his murder, but dead is still dead. Disintigrating a person just for being tied up? It's hard to get more cold blooded. But I don't think that V is evil in the classical sense. I just think that, psychologically, he is unable to rationally act in a non-evil way.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    To the contrary: an army with a policy of always accepting surrenders and then always backstabbing the prisoner would be perfectly lawful - lawful evil is still lawful.
    PH, p. 104 "Lawful characters tell the truth, keep their word..." So no, our LE army could not promise treatment A and then provide something inferior without endangering their alignment.

    Talking about "consistent policy" is generally a sign of trying to fiddle with the rules. The player "consistently" does what they feel like doing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    In any particular case, betraying a trust is evil, not chaotic.
    also PH, P. 104 "Chaotic characters ... do what they promise if they feel like it."
    By contrast, the good-evil section has no reference about either being more or less trustworthy. So betraying a trust is clearly chaotic. It is only evil to the extent one can show damage [And a CG would feel no hesitation about warning somebody of an evil plot even tho he promised not to tell anyone. The fact he damaged the plotter is more than balanced by the benefit to the intended victim.]

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    I'm not sure why you mention Vaarsuvius and Roy; neither of them appears in the second panel of 285, and they are irrelevant to my argument.
    They are in panels 4 & 7, among other places. And they present reasons to doubt killing Belkar would have been an evil deed.


    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    getting Miko to fall is a major goal of Belkar's, and he seems to know the rules on it pretty well, so the fact that he wants her to kill him in that panel indicates that it will cause her to fall.
    But we find in 286 that Belkar's understanding of the situation was majorly flawed, not to mention that Belkar has very limited brainpower in any case. Thus we can't accept that his reasoning is correct. If anything, we are to assume the reverse.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    There is no indication elsewhere in the comic that Belkar is wrong about what would cause Miko to fall,
    But that is what V and Roy provide. Roy in particular. He is in perfect position to tell Miko she is doing something evil. Instead he denies there is a good or evil aspect to the situation. We also have Durkon who also fails to call Miko's plan evil.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    and he's frequently right about the rules. His only error is about whether he would have been resurrected afterwards, and that has no bearing on whether killing him would have been an evil act.
    And you don't think an error that would have gotten him killed permanently doesn't bring his logic into major question? Not even when someone who called him an idiot now wants to call that a compliment?
    Nor do we have any reason to deem Belkar especially knowledgable about what constitutes good and evil. He needs only a casual understanding that good folk generally don't slaughter prisoners to get a misunderstanding that this is a grave sin.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by spectralphoenix View Post
    They are the defining rules on the subject for campaigns that use the BoXD as part of their setting. Eberron, Ravenloft, Forgotten Realms, Planescape, and pretty much every other campaign setting ever produced has different defining rules on the subject. The BoXD are optional, and most people don't use them.
    You do realize that in order to prove a point, other than you know, claim it without backing. FR, PS, Ebberon, Ravenloft still use the rules, find me a disclaimer in any of the books where they say they don't. They had different rules for other things, but not for the rules of good and evil.

    1) Since OotS is a parody of D&D at large, and not "D&D when using the weirdest campaign supplements ever to stain WotC's presses," there's a good chance the world doesn't use those definitions.
    2) See above. Additionally, since the BoVD's definition of murder is different from the BoED's, even if you use them you still have to choose which of the contradictory rules takes precedence.
    3) Hyperbole, meet EE. EE, Hyperbole.
    1) Considering MIko fell for a rule in the BoED deeds, and there is nothing to say it wouldn't be in their (and there have been monsters from the book), until you can prove this, its worst nothing
    2) BoVD had a different definintion within a different context. Again, no proof
    3) Point meet Mr. S Phoenix, on wait, i think he's avoiding you today, come back next time


    I'll reference again the slayer of Dromiel, who presents a class accessable by paladins, and it excplicitly states that they may act, when occassion arises, as assassins. Assassins, by definition of the term, are those who engage in assassination, which is defined as murder in all cases. Paladins may never, ever commit evil deeds without falling, yet here, a situation is given where they may murder. May not commit evil+may sometimes murder
    Um, thats not quite true, they still have to follow the exalted rules


    Nope. An unlawful action definitely. Evil, that's an entirely different story. The idea that he killed for convenience is a misreading. It had been an act of mercy not to kill Kubota earlier. V simply stopped granting mercy. [BED does say one should always be merciful, but quickly turns around and shows that "always" in fact means "almost always", which is also the D&D definition of "always evil".]
    see the section on killing prisoners and mercy. It won't make V evil because its just one deed, but it is an absolute evil action
    from
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    Last edited by EvilElitest; 2008-10-01 at 10:10 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Oops, missed this:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shatteredtower View Post
    You might think it's a bluff, but V's also the sort that believes in vengeance from beyond the grave.
    I'd guess that's a bluff, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Weird as it feels to agree with David Argall, I think you're granting Belkar way too much insight here. He assumes that killing him would cause Miko to Fall. Short of Rich posting, "Yes, it would have," or another paladin falling from an identical action, we have no way of knowing whether he was right or wrong.
    We can know few of the things we discuss here with certainty; we have to make inferences based on what we see in the strip.

    Now, I like Miko and dislike Belkar, and I would love to believe that Miko would have been perfectly justified in killing Belkar there, and that Vaarsuvius and the rest of the order are doing evil in attempting to prevent her.

    But if that's the case, how do we reconcile panel 3, where Miko clearly has an inner conflict about whether to kill Belkar, with the idea that Miko is only marginally good? If it's not evil to kill a helpless Belkar, Miko should have no qualms about it, and Belkar should not have been around for the past 300 strips.

    Now, you could argue that the common perception is mistaken, and in fact, Miko holds herself to a much higher standard of good than is required for a paladin. However,
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    this seems inconsistent with Rich's commentary in the books.


    Now Rich's posts have been acknowledged by him not to be canon, and that perhaps is true of his commentary in the books as well, but the idea that Miko would have been justified in killing Belkar and the Order of the Stick was wrong to defend him just seems to me to be a long way from the consensus in this forum. Is my perception skewed here? Do a lot of people believe that Miko was right and the order wrong in 285?

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    So betraying a trust is clearly chaotic. It is only evil to the extent one can show damage
    I think Kubota could show damage - or he could if his remains hadn't been scattered to the four winds.

    And you don't think an error that would have gotten him killed permanently doesn't bring his logic into major question? Not even when someone who called him an idiot now wants to call that a compliment?
    I think there's a difference between character level logic and player level knowledge. I think that Belkar, and to a lesser extent Vaarsuvius and Roy, show a knowledge of the rules that would be expected only of characters played by optimizing players (aka "min-maxers" or 2000s use of "munchkin", the latter of which has changed from its 1980s meaning). A player can know the rules well and still play an illogical chaotic character - maybe it's his roleplaying nod to low intellectual stats.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    how do we reconcile panel 3, where Miko clearly has an inner conflict about whether to kill Belkar, with the idea that Miko is only marginally good?
    Well, it seems that panel 3 is a dramatic pause rather than any inner conflict at all. The actor tries to milk the moment by not acting right away, and often, like here, to allow the rescue squad to get in position.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    If it's not evil to kill a helpless Belkar, Miko should have no qualms about it,
    Quite incorrect. Any good individual should have qualms about just about any killing. It is almost definitionally The evil act. So any time the Good is about to kill, thinking it over to make sure it is actually a good idea is a reasonable action. And while we know that Belkar was entirely worthy of death, Miko does not have the same access to his record we do. So taking a moment to check the possibility there is reason to spare this slime when he is helpless is fully compatible with any degree of Good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    Do a lot of people believe that Miko was right and the order wrong in 285?
    Now I am not sure of writer intent, but yes, Miko had a fully adequate justification from a moral view for killing Belkar, and the party, one and all, made no attempt to show her action as evil, compared to blathering about group loyalty, a value denounced by nearly all moral philosphers.
    Possibly our writer had in mind later scenes here. If Roy had argued that virtue or law demanded Belkar live, Miko has problems considering Roy evil thereafter, which could have made her "reasonably" thinking there was a massive evil conspiracy more difficult. So Roy must argue on different grounds, which then give her grounds to think Roy does not fight for the good.
    But we still end up with a scene where the party can offer no Good reason to spare Belkar.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    I think Kubota could show damage - or he could if his remains hadn't been scattered to the four winds.
    Already covered. If any "promises" to Kubota are kept, that merely endangers a large number of innocents. So the verbal promises are not worth the paper they are written on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Dew View Post
    A player can know the rules well and still play an illogical chaotic character - maybe it's his roleplaying nod to low intellectual stats.
    Which still gives us no reason to trust his in-character remarks, which is what we have here.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Somber Requiem View Post
    Okay, my two copper pieces.

    My guess is that V is feeling frustration, shame, and loneliness.

    The frustation part is the obvious most surfaced emotion; his (and I've always thought of V as male, so sue me) reaction to the immediate circumstances. There's a quest and he's stuck on endless subplots. Every one else's priorities are occupied with trivialities. Really, what does the OotS owe the refugees of Azure City? For Elan and Durkon, it's a no-brainer. People need help and they're in a position to give it. For V, the help is meaningless if they fail to secure the Snarl. What does it matter if they save a bunch of refugees if the world gets destroyed or enslaved or whatever? So the conflict of priorities is clear...

    But I think it goes a little deeper than that. I also think that V is feeling some pretty intense shame. Shame that his magic wasn't enough to save Azure City. Shame that he's unable to use magic to find Haley. It's one failure after another at something that he excells at; and rather than admit that failure he's pushing harder and harder with the belief that if he can just succeed once with his magic then it will all be vindicated. Finding Haley isn't just to get the group together to save the world. It's proof that he is still an effective mage. Even the crack about Therkla's exp reflect this desperate need to get one more level higher to succeed.

    But underneath all that, I suspect that V is intensely lonely. The group is all the family that V connects with; even this "mate" of his was mentioned only once. Durkon we know has kin he wants to see. Elan makes friends with every NPC that he's not making saves against. Even Haley and Belkar associate with outsiders better than V does ( when Belkar's not spontaneously killing folks). But the splitting of the order, Roy's death, Haley's and Belkar's possible deaths, and his own self exile have left him utterly alone. Durkon and Elan have adjusted, working with Hinjo and Diego and Therkla. V can't. And the longer he is on the boat, the worse he feels. If it was just a matter of saving the world then V could simply leave at any of the cities and find new members.

    I think that V is, technically, evil in the sense that he no longer seems to have concern for the consequence of his actions, particularly the harm that may be caused by his actions. For some one desperate to reunite the Order, he was likewise apparently willing to kill Elan, a member of the Order! Not exactly logical or intelligent. V might be bluffling, but who knows? Not feeling remorse for his action; taking the immedately most expedient and ruthless action as suits his goals... really how is V much different than Belkar? Sure, Belkar takes enjoyment in his murder, but dead is still dead. Disintigrating a person just for being tied up? It's hard to get more cold blooded. But I don't think that V is evil in the classical sense. I just think that, psychologically, he is unable to rationally act in a non-evil way.
    1- New to this forum, so HI ALL
    2- Excellent post if I ever saw any

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    The Deva said that if Roy hadn't gone back to fetch Elan that single act would have been enough to send him into neutral, but not evil. Now V's actions are probably less serious than abandoning a good-aligned team member. So even if one considers this as evil, it's unlikely that it was enough to send V into evil alignment.

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest View Post
    It won't make V evil because its just one deed, but it is an absolute evil action
    If there was an alternative which didn't imply Kubota being released and keep doing his evil deeds than it would have been simple to classify. It's clearly non-lawful, but unlike killing a good aligned character, killing an evil guy who's going to get away with it and keep harming others isn't straightforward. I'd have a problem deciding if I were the DM.

    About being one deed, V wanted to do this before, so it's in character and marks a tendency. V surely lacks any kind of remorse about what was done, and doesn't seem to have major objections to this kind of stuff.

    I'd like to see Roy's take on this. Hinjo's reaction will also be interesting.
    Last edited by teratorn; 2008-10-02 at 08:31 AM.
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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Two more cents.

    Good and evil aren't about what actions you take. They are about the consequences of the actions taken. If you have a choice, and one action involves harming others, and the other does not, then you are committing an act of evil by choosing the first because of the consequences. Kubota and Belkar are strident examples of this. Belkar didn't care about the consequences of killing people, and ultimately he is paying the price for it. Personally I doubt he would care about getting gutted like a fish; he always seemed to have a reckless 'if they can kill me then good for them' streak, but when it came to killing others little kept him from doing so.

    For me, V's "evil act" was when he threatened to kill a member of the order who was impeeding him from reuniting the order. That's not just evil, but crazy as well.

    Off to teach class!

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    An unlawful action definitely. Evil, that's an entirely different story. The idea that he killed for convenience is a misreading.
    Repeating exactly what V stated is not a misreading. Please don't misrepresent the event that refutes your position.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    It had been an act of mercy not to kill Kubota earlier.
    V has never known of any reason for killing Kubota. The elf was satisfied with being handed one after the fact, but made it clear that it wasn't relevant to the action.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    V simply stopped granting mercy.
    Then it's the same sort of mercy that prevents people from shooting others just for being in the same room as them.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    As has been noted, V is not bound by Elan's agreement.
    It also would have had no meaningful impact on V, had V not killed Kubota.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    You have surrendered, you are property, to be used as desired.
    That's the evil point of view. It is not otherwise accurate.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    Hinjo is lawful and thus he has a very high possibility of trying to arrest V for murder.
    Therefor, V is responsible for the true distraction to self, no one else. This logical consequence should have been easily foreseen by the wizard, after all.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    At the least, he is going to investigate, and annoy V, taking time from his research.
    Research that could safely have been conducted anywhere in the world -- and still can. Therefore, there is no threat, unless V fabricates one.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    From a purely personal view, Hinjo will likely cause V more trouble than Kubota would have.
    As a foreseeable result of V's actions against a party that could have been safely ignored by V.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    It is the fleet and the rest of the party that get any benefit from the killing.
    Perhaps. Awfully big assumption, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    [which meets some of the standards for a good action according to many theories].
    The fallacious nature of this argument aside, it can't be a good action, because V didn't do it for a good reason. You might as well claim that the murder of the Waynes was a good action because it lead to Batman's emergence.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    It So do you think V really values this?
    If V doesn't, then V had no reason to stick around all this time, and even less reason than before for killing Kubota. Either way, the act cannot be justified.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    Quite the contrary actually.
    No, David, it's not "on the contrary." "More precisely," I will grant you.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    In the 8th, Haley is talking about soul binding as evil. By contrast, she has not said that killing Nale & friends is evil.
    As has been established previously, however, that is her viewpoint. Further back, we can see that Elan agrees. V would appear to agree as well, having presented the case as the argument from Belkar's perspective.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    V's comment was "intellectual discussion", indicating his distaste is for Belkar's limited brainpower.
    No. V's opening statements divorce distaste for the halfling from the case the halfling would present, a position both Haley and Elan have objected to in previous discussions.
    Last edited by Shatteredtower; 2008-10-02 at 11:14 AM. Reason: Fixed a tag.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Oops, missed this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Argall View Post
    Surrender does not carry with it any binding restrictions on the other side.
    There is a reason why the Allies specified that they wanted "unconditional" surrender in World War 2. That is because, contrary to what you say, surrender normally does carry conditions. In Kubota's case, those conditions were explicitly spelled out.

    So you are mistaken here, unless you are just trying to say "might makes right", by which theory there are never any binding restrictions on anyone.

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    Default Re: OOTS #597 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurentio II View Post
    Nope. Law sets rules on the force that you can use, or not. But the personal reason still matter on your "alignmeter".
    So you agree, harming a prisoner is a law/chaos act, not good/evil.

    Now you don't HAVE V's personal reason. What we have is:

    He's a bad guy.

    He's going to get away with it.

    We have much bigger problems than this.

    Let's get on with it.

    Nowt evil there.

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