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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 05 Nov 2020 :  02:01:05  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

I prefer more absolute alignment systems. Good and Evil (and Law and Chaos) are fundamental building blocks of the D&D cosmos. Or at least the typical incarnation of the D&D cosmos and the array of Outer Planes structured around it.

Beings like Celestials and Fiends are made of this stuff. For them to act contrary to their essential natures is unthinkable, even suicidal. An angel weakens and perishes after embracing Evil acts. A devil loses all power and stature (and is quickly slain by others of his kind) after embracing Good acts.


No fallen angels or risen fiends in your games, I take it? There is at least one canonical example of a Fiend (Devil) that is hinted to be a celestial being that fell from grace: the Erinyes. Also, I seem to recall reading about an official succubus paladin (!). Note that I am not criticizing you for any such exclusion...I am merely pointing out that they do exist in standard Dungeons & Dragons (along with its standard Alignment system).

That said, I have toyed with an interpretation similar to your own. A Pit Fiend is the concept of corrupted law manifested into tangibility; were they to commit an exceedingly potent act of good, they may transform into a Celestial of some kind.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4509 Posts

Posted - 05 Nov 2020 :  02:43:39  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Eludecia, the Succubus Paladin http://archive.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/fc/20050824a

Though I did not approve of how she was treated after wining the D&D Creature Competition, I suspect everyone that came up with competitors were hoping for another to win.

However the contest promised to provide a story for the winner of the contest. They also did stat blocks. Because she was evil born she got six, three for falling. Some objected at the time, however others liked the increased stat blocks for the crunch forgiving the flavor of having her fall.

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
7311 Posts

Posted - 05 Nov 2020 :  02:47:31  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
No fallen angels or risen fiends in your games, I take it? There is at least one canonical example of a Fiend (Devil) that is hinted to be a celestial being that fell from grace: the Erinyes. Also, I seem to recall reading about an official succubus paladin (!).

The ultimate canonical example of a fallen angel, at least in some mythologies, is Asmodeus.

Some deities also have histories involving fundamental shifts in their alignments and natures. It might be argued that they're the most profound examples of this whole idea. Or it might be argued that they're "above" the rules of lesser beings.

Planescape also offered a number of other "crossover" beings, mostly one-offs to help build weirdness into the setting.

While not proper canon, Planescape: Torment was quite populated by such examples. Almost every character in the party was some flavour of contradictory freak: an unliving immortal protoganist, a zealously law-abiding githzerai, a redeemed succubus priest, a chaotic warmongering modron, etc.

So there's plenty of room in D&D for any possibility. But my point is that the vast majority of unexceptionals are constrained by the cosmos. And even the exceptionals - PCs, heroes, villains, and other extraordinary characters - rarely possess unique enough qualities to endure such radical transgressions against their own defining natures. Let alone any desire to do so.

[/Ayrik]
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2020 :  07:07:01  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Great Reader Ayrik,

quote:
While not proper canon, Planescape: Torment was quite populated by such examples. Almost every character in the party was some flavour of contradictory freak: an unliving immortal protoganist, a zealously law-abiding githzerai, a redeemed succubus priest, a chaotic warmongering modron, etc.


I don't know why, but upon reading this, I thought of the movie, Nightbreed. Not sure how old you are, have ever heard of it or watched it, but it sounds like that movie. lol

Best regards,




Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2020 :  08:48:52  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by bloodtide_the_red

A cleric or paladin of Tyr must be Lawful Good, so not to get too deep in alignments they can't do evil acts...ever. Even if they wander into a land with evil laws. Say Triadic Knight Steve is playing catch with boy Bob...and when Bob goes to catch the ball he falls through a fence and tramples/crushes from special flowers. The law keepers rush over and say "it is instant death to disturb special flowers, Triadic Knight Steve, as you were witness to the act, the LAW says you must kill this boy immediately. So does Lawful Good Triadic Knight Steve draw his weapon and slaughter the innocent young boy and just say to himself "yuck yuck, I'm following the law"?

I will say NO. If Tyr was that type of deity, he would be Neutral, not lawful good.


Hm. Would Amaunator (a Lawful Neutral god that vastly prefers the letter of the law to the spirit) enforce the flower death penalty?

P.S. Star Trek: The Next Generation reference?

quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

quote:
No fallen angels or risen fiends in your games, I take it? There is at least one canonical example of a Fiend (Devil) that is hinted to be a celestial being that fell from grace: the Erinyes. Also, I seem to recall reading about an official succubus paladin (!).


While not proper canon, Planescape: Torment was quite populated by such examples. Almost every character in the party was some flavour of contradictory freak:

...

a zealously law-abiding githzerai

...


Because of him, they are now - as of 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons - a Lawful Neutral race. Go figure . Not even Drizzt had that much influence!

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2020 :  18:08:27  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe Azar,

quote:
Hm. Would Amaunator (a Lawful Neutral god that vastly prefers the letter of the law to the spirit) enforce the flower death penalty?

P.S. Star Trek: The Next Generation reference?


Ahhhh, perfect point you make there. Your love for Star Trek is likely on par with mine. That was a fantastic episode to explore ethics and morality in. It hit the nail right on the head. The irony was that while it discussed the death penalty, it was really more of a referendum on what is right, wrong, etc. I feel that a retort to this, as a means to get ahead of it relates to Tyr's dogma, which I will post below and then comment on:

Tyr's dogma:

quote:
Novices of Tyr are charged to: "Reveal the truth, punish the guilty, right the wrong, and be always true and just in your actions." Tyr and his followers are devoted to the cause of justice, to the righting of wrongs and the deliverance of just vengeance. This is not necessarily equality or fairness, as some make the maimed god out to represent, but rather the discovery of truth and the punishment of the guilty. Tyrrans tend to be stiff-necked about theology and to see matters in black and white terms. Clergy of Tyr are sworn to uphold the law wherever they go, and to punish those wronged under the law. They are to keep complete records of their own rulings, deeds, and decisions. Through these records, a priest's errors can be corrected, his or her grasp of the laws of all lands can grow and flourish, and lawbreakers can be identified by others. No known injustice done by a Tyrran priest must go unbalanced. Priests of Tyr should also always be vigilant in their observations and anticipations, seeking to see what forces and which beings intend or will cause injustices and threaten law and order in the future. They should then act to prevent such challenges to justice in coming to pass. In short: Abide by the laws, and let no others break them. Mete out punishment where lawbreaking occurs.


Clergy of Tyr are sworn to uphold the law wherever they go, and to punish those wronged under the law. Though poorly worded as that should have said, "...and to punish those who wronged under the law.", the point is still wrong for the editorial flub up.

This by itself mandates that the answer to your question would emphatically be yes. However, wait, there's more!

quote:
Tyr and his followers are devoted to the cause of justice, to the righting of wrongs and the deliverance of just vengeance.


What is "justice" in the non-textual consideration, and in order to right wrongs, you have to know what "right" and "wrong" is, in order to avenge wrongs. If followers of Tyr end up upholding "...the law wherever they go,...", then they will eventually uphold "evil" laws (whatever that means) as well as "good laws (whatever that means). The only argument out of this is to say there is absolute good and absolute bad. While that is a Realms setting/cosmology thing, everyone knows that is silly. If that was the case, free choice wouldn't exist, and the fight over souls in the Blood War wouldn't be a thing. You could just grab your morning Demon or Devil Newspaper, read the soul stock market read out and go cash in at the end of the day.

There are other huge problems with the Tyr dogma that are a little.......dirty.

quote:
Reveal the truth, punish the guilty, right the wrong, and be always true and just in your actions.


What does that even mean? Who's truth? It can be considered a capital crime in Semphar to worship anyone else. If you're a Tyrran walking into the country do you just kill yourself for being "illegal" in your thoughts upon entering? If it isn't wrong to worship another deity in Semphar, then why is Semphar not being challenged by the Tyrran's, and specifically, Triad aligned countries, like Cormyr?
quote:
...and Tyr's shrine is perched in the angle where the Promenade and the Royal Ride meet. (Volo's Guide to Cormyr, p17)


Also, when revealing the truth knowing that there is no universal truth, even if there is a universal alignment (I don't accept that, but it is canon) how can someone "always be true and just in your actions" when the rubric changes as soon as someone crosses the "magical" boundary between Mulhorand and Semphar? It's poppycock.

quote:
Tyr and his followers are devoted to the cause of justice,...


That is only true as it regards Tyr not advocating for
quote:
...equality or fairness, as some make the maimed god out to represent, but rather the discovery of truth and the punishment of the guilty.


That just, in a circular fashion, goes right back to what is the truth? Since we know truth, unlike alignment, isn't universal, this is effectively advocacy for the fact that Semphar's legal system is right since Tyrran's don't advocate for
quote:
...equality or fairness, as some make the maimed god out to represent,...
, but rather, "truth and the punishment of the guilty."

To be honest, it sounds like it is better to worship Leira than Tyr. lol

I personally find the inconsistencies fun, and that that is where the devil's playground is.

In the end, I completely agree with your position, and look forward to your response!

Best regards,







Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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bloodtide_the_red
Learned Scribe

USA
118 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2020 :  04:40:36  Show Profile  Visit bloodtide_the_red's Homepage Send bloodtide_the_red a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In most places Realmswide, the church of Tyr is not a legal marshal, sheriff or judge. So in most cases they can't really "uphamd" the law or really do anything else legally. At best cleric, knight or paladin of Tyr is a vigilante. Sure they could join a law enforcement or legal arm of any government, but that has nothing to do with their faith.

And try this spin. All the dogma of Tyr is really written with kid gloves, rose colored glasses and super delusional perfect world view. Tyr wants the follower to uphold truth and honor and justice and law and good...BUT only the, wink wink, 20th/21st century super elitist viewpoint. And the interesting twist is that Tyr is mostly active in the Heartlands of the Realms, and amazingly most of the Heartlands are all wacky 20th/21st century societies. Go most places in the Heartlands, and it's a lot like living in 20th/21st century America/Canada. So...amazingly (wink wink) the laws of most places in the Heartlands are 20th/21st American/Canadian century "perfect": innocent until proven guilty, freedom of religion, equality, and so on. This "perfect" land is where followers of Tyr are made to act in: the land that is made, just right for them.

And the really fun twist, is maybe the whole Heartlands are so 20th/21st America/Canada 'perfect' IS because of Tyr. More then likely most places in the Heartlands had a lot of laws more typical of any place or any when OTHER then 20th/21st America/Canada. But over the years (centuries) Tyr has gotten rid of all the bad and evil laws to MAKE the Heartlands 20th/21st American/Canadian century "perfect".
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LordofBones
Master of Realmslore

1263 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2020 :  04:53:48  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Tyr is from the Norse pantheon. It's likely he adapted to the rules set by the Faerunian pantheon than the other way 'round, given that Nordic justice gives us wonderful things like Loki's punishment.
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Dalor Darden
Great Reader

USA
4049 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2020 :  06:01:35  Show Profile Send Dalor Darden a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Some people can't help seeing things from their modern viewpoint of good, evil, law, chaos and insist that medieval societies adhere to their narrow experiences.

The Old Grey Box and AD&D for me!
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2020 :  06:17:23  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe bloodtide_the_red,

quote:
In most places Realmswide, the church of Tyr is not a legal marshal, sheriff or judge.


I actually agree with you. I very much enjoy the intricate arguments around this kind of material and thus, like digging into the nuanced points about it. Tyrran's would get wrecked if they went around doing what it says in the dogma.

quote:
So in most cases they can't really "uphamd" the law or really do anything else legally. At best cleric, knight or paladin of Tyr is a vigilante.


So true, and it says so, ironically, right in the dogma. They help others and themselves seek vengeance against the guilty. The interesting thing about that is the reality that the "guilty" can be quite a different thing from once place to another, hence my bringing up and juxtaposing Cormyr and Semphar.

quote:
And try this spin. All the dogma of Tyr is really written with kid gloves, rose colored glasses and super delusional perfect world view.


That is so true. Honestly, the tropey, "hero" ethic is in fact written with kids gloves. It's an ethic that is based on situational moments, and really appears to be a form of epicureanism. Which, is fine if that is how someone lives their lives, but it is a farse when such an ethic, or something similar to it, is an almost immutable ethic that everyone gets, as in moral realism, or certain normative ethic models. It seems to center around the group think notion of what the group tacitly feels is walking up to the line without crossing it, but letting the other party know it was bad, but not so bad that they have to take serious action. It is a bit bizarre.

quote:
Tyr wants the follower to uphold truth and honor and justice and law and good...BUT only the, wink wink, 20th/21st century super elitist viewpoint. And the interesting twist is that Tyr is mostly active in the Heartlands of the Realms, and amazingly most of the Heartlands are all wacky 20th/21st century societies. Go most places in the Heartlands, and it's a lot like living in 20th/21st century America/Canada. So...amazingly (wink wink) the laws of most places in the Heartlands are 20th/21st American/Canadian century "perfect": innocent until proven guilty, freedom of religion, equality, and so on. This "perfect" land is where followers of Tyr are made to act in: the land that is made, just right for them.


It is hilarious, no lie. I mean, in medieval times, it began with trial by ordeal, and then when the Church pulled out of that, it went to jury of presentment, and others after that too. All of which were insanely unfair and unreasonable in any way, shape and form.

quote:
And the really fun twist, is maybe the whole Heartlands are so 20th/21st America/Canada 'perfect' IS because of Tyr. More then likely most places in the Heartlands had a lot of laws more typical of any place or any when OTHER then 20th/21st America/Canada. But over the years (centuries) Tyr has gotten rid of all the bad and evil laws to MAKE the Heartlands 20th/21st American/Canadian century "perfect".



Oh yeah, could you imagine it not being that way, and then all of a sudden your 21st level player get some Semphar, Calimshan, Halruaa law? That would not make for a good session. It's fun dealing with this stuff and figuring it out for sure!

Best regards,





Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 07 Nov 2020 :  06:28:53  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Great Reader Darden,

You make a really good point. Some people do.

For example, as I was just commenting to Learned Scribe bloodtide_the_red, I have different medieval systems of law that I use in different places. A lot of them are trial by ordeal, which were of course public crimes due to the fact that crimes were issues of public impact in all manner. There are many examples of legal systems in the Realms adhering to old, "abusive" (to us, not them of course), unequal, and unfair practices. While laughable to us now, the idea of Questions of Importance were amazingly good ideas in medieval times, whether done by the monarch or his surrogate. lol

In Unther, I use the Code of Enlil, but it is the Vendidad, so I use what I know of that as well.

So yes, I agree of course: people do narrow things down often to one scope, without considering the panoply of legal systems that existed and the cultural complexity behind them.

Best regards,





Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2020 :  00:38:37  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I mentioned "Amaunator" and some heard "Tyr" .

quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

Some people can't help seeing things from their modern viewpoint of good, evil, law, chaos and insist that medieval societies adhere to their narrow experiences.



That may be so. However...the Realms aren't strictly medieval. Furthermore, many of us play to get away from the modern world, yes, but we're not looking to achieve full historical accuracy. I - personally - require just enough detail to get the immersion going and no more.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  23:29:28  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe Azar,

quote:
That may be so. However...the Realms aren't strictly medieval. Furthermore, many of us play to get away from the modern world, yes, but we're not looking to achieve full historical accuracy. I - personally - require just enough detail to get the immersion going and no more.


I completely agree with this. I like to have enough where the familiarity on average breeds comfortable association, without going to such a degree that it is too far gone with detail and the story is lost. It is a really hard thing to pull off, and I hope some day to get it correct! ;)

Best regards,





Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Azar
Learned Scribe

103 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2020 :  03:06:22  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cpthero2

Learned Scribe Azar,

quote:
That may be so. However...the Realms aren't strictly medieval. Furthermore, many of us play to get away from the modern world, yes, but we're not looking to achieve full historical accuracy. I - personally - require just enough detail to get the immersion going and no more.


I completely agree with this. I like to have enough where the familiarity on average breeds comfortable association, without going to such a degree that it is too far gone with detail and the story is lost. It is a really hard thing to pull off, and I hope some day to get it correct! ;)

Best regards,








There was this quote that really spoke to me and I'm paraphrasing it a bit, but it goes something like this.

quote:
"If a campaign is a meal, then realism is a spice; sometimes you only require a dash and other times a large amount is needed. Either way, the spice is not the meal."


You can swap out "realism" for "historical accuracy" and the message remains equally applicable. I hesitate settling on the phrase "historical accuracy" because, again, this setting isn't absolutely medieval; magic alone is a rather large game changer.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1764 Posts

Posted - 16 Nov 2020 :  07:44:51  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe Azar,

Great quote that you paraphrased there! I think I am going to keep that one.

Do you remember at all where that quote came from, originally?

Best regards,





Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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