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11 December 2002 @ 11:06 am
The slaves are free  
Well, we had gaming last night (because one of the characters important for the session was not going to be able to make it for Wednesday).

The GM pulled off a minor feat (which some of the players were desperately trying to derail) and got all of the characters back together. While this game doesn't qualify as the best game I have ever been in, it certainly isn't the worst and I am still having fun.

This game has been incredibly instructive in terms of GM styles and role playing habits. I find myself developing distinct, concrete pet peeves regarding how individuals play their characters.

For example: The paladin. He is lawful good. He is supposed to be a champion for order and good. He attacked two guards in last night's session. This was the middle of a town, broad daylight, without being provoked. The guards were not evil. They were simply hired swords to guard a lord's manor house. The paladin stabilized the two guards (one of which was knocked unconscious by his horse), but was censored by the GM was not feeling quite right about it.

When the player complained that his paladin was not wishy-washy, I knew I had another "I want to be just like the other fighters only with cool tricks" paladin on my hands. These players (I have met two) play their paladins as if their actions have no consequences and that lying, cheating, and disobeying the law (even if it is the law of a presumably non-good establishment) are OK if their ends are met.

I am starting to agree with DHelms that paladin should be a prestige class in most games.
Feeling like: amusedamused
Listening to: rustle rustle (paper)
Keshwynkeshwyn on December 11th, 2002 10:08 am (UTC)
Mm. I know some people who could play good/in-character paladins, but yes, I can see the reasoning there.

I hope your paladin's god gets annoyed at him and lays some smackdown upon him. :) Several Retribution gaming stories jump to mind, (one of which was about a cleric, not a paladin, but same sort of reasoning), as does one story about mindways's paladin, who was a nice guy, but not too bright...
The Darkermindways on December 11th, 2002 11:59 am (UTC)
I ran a paladin named Drew in a somewhat tumultuous AD&D 2nd Ed game. Perhaps his most distinctive aspect was his mind. It worked oddly. He had a Wisdom of 16 and an Int of 5, IIRC - so he was very insightful, yet very stupid.

He was insightful enough to realize that not everyone he travelled with was particularly moral. He was insightful enough to realize that they would try to make end-runs around his sense of morality, doing things while his back was turned. He was, however, dim enough that this awareness didn't prevent those end-runs from happening every so often.

On one occasion, we were interrogating a prisoner. The prisoner - seeing Drew - refused to talk, knowing that a paladin would never condone the use of torture. In a (genuinely upset and worried) rage, Drew verbally berated the prisoner, saying:

  "No! Of *course* I won't hurt you, or suffer you to be hurt! But I am thick of skull and numb of wit, and these others will undoubtedly find some way around me to get the information out of you!"

(As it turned out, he was right. There was a disturbance nearby, and while the paladin was helping to deal with it, a member of the party came back to the bound prisoner and...well...ick.)
Qarylla Windragarqarylla on December 11th, 2002 01:08 pm (UTC)
How you ran your paladin was reasonable.

Heck, how Ian ran his paladin (except for one incident that really rankled) was also reasonable.

I think that if I run a D&D game that I am going to write a contract for those individuals who are playing characters where alignment is particularly important (mostly paladins, clerics, and monks - lawful alignments seem to cause this difficulty on a more regular basis), and stress to them what I consider their alignment to mean.

That way if their character is out of alignment, they will already have a warning as to what I expect from them as roleplayers. Not too terribly important as I am more likely to run Changeling again first.

Honestly, the paladin situation wouldn't have been so bad if the lawful good monk hadn't been staring off into space in the front of the manor, gotten up his gumption, and knocked on the door and asked to speak to the lord of the manor. I mean, he asked and because the town/society was lawful (maybe lawful evil or lawful neutral, but still), he was allowed to make his case.

Eh. I just find the one person to be playing a paladin who wants to be a rogue to be annoying.