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rgtriplec

DM/GM Power

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I can see scenario 2. I'm even up for that.

 

Scenario 1...it really depends. Was it in character that the rogues told the cleric to go distract the priest. Or was this out of character and the game had player knowledge mixed together. Then again, I'm not a fan of removing a player from the game in that method. I wouldn't have blinded them. Take away their powers sure. They could at least run around trying to fight and use potions and do other things to at least stay in the game. And realize how dependent they were on their powers. 

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No, she was actively participating. When the others said "We're gonna stealth and see if we can steal those bags of gold." The first time she was like "I didn't see anything." By the third time, she was like, "Hey, I'll go distract the priestess.

 

@pcktlnt - I think it was fair. Not only was she not following her deity and order's mandates... She broke a verbal contract with high priest and his order, and was participating in our desecrating this tomb.

Edited by rgtriplec

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That mostly sounds like an example of using alignment wrong. If a character isn't behaving lawfully and... goodly... then they aren't LG. Don't punish them for not behaving that way, just say that they're really acting more like XYZ alignment, and have a chat about maybe changing what's written on the sheet. Now, if there's some rule in this system that a cleric's alignment must match your deity's, then maybe that player should have thought about the kind of character they wanted to play before deciding on a Lawful Good god. (If such a rule does exist, I don't like it. I think there's tremendous potential in characters who aspire to loyally follow their religion's precepts, but struggle with their inherent nature to behave otherwise. Now, punishment from a deity or order if one strays too far out of bounds would become interesting character and plot development, rather than arbitrary and un-fun punishment of the player.) Regardless, this player either wasn't being true to their Lawful Good character, or they were being true to their non-LG character. Behaving according to one's alignment should never be a struggle in-character; it is by definition what the character is naturally inclined to do.

 

I think that was a poor choice of punishment from the DM, since it did take the player out of the game. Punishing the player like that sounds like the actions of a DM who let his frustration get in the way of his game-running. With the benefit of hindsight, I would say that a punishment which affected but didn't totally cripple the character would be a better choice. Removing spells for a period of time would be reasonable, since the cleric would at least not be a danger to themself and others, so would be able to travel with the party and hit stuff with a rock or whatever. Even better would be a punishment that advanced the plot, like ordering them to go on a quest of some sort to redeem themselves, either by the order or the deity itself. Or they could be exiled from the order if the crime was great enough, introducing a whole new element to the story.

 

The psionics thing seems a little arbitrary but generally fine, given the well-known nature of wishes.

Edited by Slendertroll

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If it's D&D, you're allowed to be one step removed from your chosen deity's alignment on either the Lawful-Chaotic or Good-Evil scale, but not on both as a cleric.  A Cleric cannot be Neutral unless the diety is also Neutral.

 

So a LG god could have clerics of LG, NG, LN alignment; NG god could have cleric of LG, NG, CG.

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@ Slendertroll - I disagree. A character that draws its power from a deity, which would be all magic users needs to play within that alignment. The alignment chosen meant that she was law abiding and of good moral character. She was also not just a magic user but a cleric, a holy person, a representative of sorts of her deity. In character she chose to be a thief and she chose to be deceitful, and she chose to desecrate the tombs. As a player she chose to disregard subtle warnings from the DM. Part of rpgs is playing your character the way its created or suffer the consequences. At one point someone was doing a check on some treasure to see if it was booby trapped and valuable. When the DM said it wasn't trapped, and told us it value. She said, "I'll go talk to the priestess."

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If you are going to be good then be good, so good it annoys everyone else in your party. Call all the monster "foul fiends" that you will "send back to the blackened abyss" in your best goodly voice.

Au Contrair, mon frer. Sometimes being Lawful Good is about seeing the Good in everyone, even the Undead. In the World's Largest Dungeon, I played a Paladin and we encountered a Cleric of Vecna, who was clearly a force for stability, peace, and reason. He saw his actions as evil, but we saw them as good and parted ways, if not as friends, then as colleagues.

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I have no problem with the second, at all. Wishes are meant to not work. I would hope someone would fill the player in a little bit if they were unaware of that context, though.

 

The first I disagree with. Not because of the LG alignment thing, but as GM I feel you have a responsibility to run a game for everyone, and in this case it sounds like the GM removed a player from the game for three hours?!

 

That's a pretty nasty thing to do to someone, in my opinion.

 

It's hard to tell not being in the game, but it sounds like the cleric's player just wanted to participate and didn't understand the problems with being a lawful good cleric in a group of rogues. In this case I think the better way to go would be to make the cleric lose the benefits of spellcasting and have a more appropriate deity start appealing to her, or if it's early enough in the campaign, just have her choose a different patron god. Rebuild, maybe. It's not hard.

 

The player may not be playing her alignment well, but it doesn't sound malicious. There's no need to punish someone like that. All it does is drive them out of the group.

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@ Slendertroll - I disagree. A character that draws its power from a deity, which would be all magic users needs to play within that alignment. The alignment chosen meant that she was law abiding and of good moral character. She was also not just a magic user but a cleric, a holy person, a representative of sorts of her deity. In character she chose to be a thief and she chose to be deceitful, and she chose to desecrate the tombs. As a player she chose to disregard subtle warnings from the DM. Part of rpgs is playing your character the way its created or suffer the consequences. At one point someone was doing a check on some treasure to see if it was booby trapped and valuable. When the DM said it wasn't trapped, and told us it value. She said, "I'll go talk to the priestess."

Well right, but I would say that that isn't a Lawful Good character. That might be what is written on the sheet, but the character, based on their actions, is clearly at least Neutral on one axis, if not Chaotic or Evil. Every system I've ever played allows you to change the alignment written on your sheet in response to character action. Now, it might be that switching to a non-LG alignment might result in a loss of powers, if alignment is a condition of employment from your deity. But that doesn't mean that the character was behaving uncharacteristically within the fiction of the game universe, just that the player didn't understand who their character was when they wrote their character sheet. Alignment isn't an arbitrary restriction on what a character can or cannot do; it's a description of what a character is predisposed to do.

 

A DM is certainly within his rights to say that certain behavior doesn't fall within the precepts of a game religion, and that a deity will revoke powers (or otherwise punish) if someone continues to behave that way. They're also certainly able to say that given actions aren't those that a LG character would be inclined towards, and suggest a better one if those actions come up more often than not. (A few out-of-alignment actions are only natural, and not cause for concern, but the majority of actions should be according to alignment.) They don't get to tell a player that they're playing their PC incorrectly. They have a whole world of characters to control; the players just get one. (They should also make sure their NPCs are held to rules as strict as those they subject the PCs to. If a few sins results in blindness or loss of power for a PC, then there had better not be any corrupt priests and every high-ranking church official should be a paragon of good and light.)

 

A deity punishing a character for breaking the rules of its religion (if that's an agreed-upon concept from the start) is all well and good, and makes sense from the logic of the game universe. A DM punishing a player for acting "out of character" is arbitrary and punitive.

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The first is a bit muddy.  If the cleric was willingly complicit, then the cleric had it coming...as at that point they were warned by their god not to do it again, and intentionally did it again anyway, likely due to wanting a share of the take.  I probably would have stripped holy abilities [smite / spells] instead of striking blind and deaf, but that's a style thing; making the cleric who should be stopping them blind and deaf makes the rogues' jobs easier and only promotes further kleptomaniacal murder-hoboism.  Plus then the cleric could have participated in the end of the adventure, albeit at a handicap.

 

But, that's just my style.  I usually reserve alignment changes for patterns of behavior and overarching philosophies; everyone has moments of indiscretion or temptation, and enforcing alignment over every little thing promotes an "I am my alignment" mentality.  But you can't completely ignore it either; otherwise you get an SML [stupid Magic Loophole], and those never end well.

 

The second is just funny.  When the DM asks "Are you sure?", the correct answer is "On second thought, nevermind".  Using a Wish is writing a contract with the DM: I want something, and if you don't like it you're free to mess with me.

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In the first case the DM didn't do enough especially if she was willingly compliant. I would have taken away her power of speech until she atoned. No speaking, no spells. As for the second case all I can say is bahahaaha. I can't believe that they used a wish, wishes always, always come back to bit you in the butt. It was their own fault. If you do something stupid, your DM has plenty of right to punish you.

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i had dm run a game where a necromancer was saved from death via a soul drain spell by an angel (neutral deity)  who made the necromancer a soul sucking vampire the player was trying to be a 'good' necromancer and didn't find it funny but went with rule of cool and deus ex some what machina

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Their is a lady in the Encounters league that is a l/g rogue assassin and is part of the l/g faction, the Harpers. Seems like an oxymoron to me.

 

My question would be, is she a former assassin?  Also, it's very important to note that "rogue" <> "thief", and the former covers a lot of ground.  Having a Lawful Good Rogue is entirely reasonable (for example, they could be a scout in the king's army).

 

As far as wishes, I think it's poor DMing to always make them backfire.  After all, if the DM didn't want the players to have a wish... don't give them one.  However, if the players insist on doing something stupid with said wish (especially after a DM warning), then they get what they deserve.

 

As far as handling the cleric, was this a new player or an experienced one?  If they're new, then the DM might be advised to explain to them how alignment works, and maybe even what being a priest entails.  It's possible that a new player might just be going with the flow of the party, and not realize that they really shouldn't based on their character choices.  On the other hand, an experienced player should know better and realize that there's going to be a price to pay.  I agree with the others that the loss of powers and need for atonement might have been a better solution, as that would also open up the possibility for the cleric to find a better fit for a deity...

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