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Classic D&D / Re: OD&D Help needed to find missing stuff
« Last post by Pladohs Ghost on July 04, 2018, 10:30:19 PM »
"THE MEANING OF LAW AND CHAOS IN DUNGEONS & DRAGONS AND THEIR RELATIONSHIPS TO GOOD AND EVIL
by Gary Gygax
Many questions continue to arise regarding what constitutes a “lawful” act, what sort of behavior is “chaotic”, what constituted an “evil” deed, and how cer- tain behavior is “good”. There is considerable confusion in that most dungeon- masters construe the terms “chaotic” and “evil” to mean the same thing, just as they define “lawful” and “good” to mean the same. This is scarcely surprising considering the wording of the three original volumes of DUNGEONS & DRAGONS. When that was written they meant just about the same thing in my mind — notice I do not say they were synonymous in my thinking at, that time. The wording in the GREYHAWK supplement added a bit more confusion, for by the time that booklet was written some substantial differences had been determined. In fact, had I the opportunity to do D&D over I would have made the whole business very much clearer by differentiating the four categories, and many chaotic creatures would be good, while many lawful creatures would be evil. Before going into the definitions of these four terms, a graphic representation of their relative positions will help the reader to follow the further discourse. (See #I)
Notice first that the area of neutrality lies squarely athwart the intersection of the lines which divide the four behavioral distinctions, and it is a very small area when compared with the rest of the graph. This refers to true neutrality, not to neutrality regarding certain interactions at specific times, i.e., a war which will tend to weaken a stronger player or game element regardless of the “neutral” par- ty’s actions can hardly be used as a measure of neutrality if it will benefit the par- ty’s interest to have the weakening come about.
Also note that movement upon this graph is quite possible with regard to campaign participants, and the dungeonmaster should, in fact, make this a standard consideration in play. This will be discussed hereafter.
Now consider the term “Law” as opposed to “Chaos”. While they are nothing if not opposites, they are neither good nor evil in their definitions. A highly regimented society is typically governed by strict law, i.e., a dictatorship, while societies which allow more individual freedom tend to be more chaotic. The following lists of words describing the two terms point this out. I have listed the
                                                                                   
THE STRATEGIC REVIEW
FEBRUARY 1976
words describing the concepts in increasing order of magnitude (more or less) as far as the comparison with the meanings of the two terms in D&D is concerned:
GOOD (cont.) Honest
EVIL (cont.) Dishonest Bad Injurious Wicked Corrupt
LAW
Reliability Propriety Principled Righteous Regularity Regulation Methodical Uniform Predictable Prescribed Rules Order
CHAOS Sincere Unruly Helpful Confusion Beneficial Turmoil Pure Unrestrained
Basically, then, “Law” is strict order and “Chaos” is complete anarchy, but of course they grade towards each other along the scale from left to right on the graph. Now consider the terms “Good” and “Evil” expressed in the same manner:
GOOD EVIL
Harmless Unfit Friendly Mischievous Kind Unpleasant
LAWFUL/GOOD CHAOTIC/GOOD
LAWFUL/EVIL CHAOTIC/EVIL
Random Irregular Unmethodical Unpredictable Disordered Lawless Anarchy
The terms “Law” and “Evil” are by no means mutually exclusive. There is no reason that there cannot be prescribed and strictly enforced rules which are un- pleasant, injurious or even corrupt. Likewise “Chaos” and “Good” do not form a dichotomy. Chaos can be harmless, friendly, honest, sincere, beneficial, or pure, for that matter. This all indicates that there are actually five, rather than three, alignments, namely:
NEUTRAL
The lawful/good classification is typified by the paladin, the chaotic/good align- ment is typified by elves, lawful/evil is typified by the vampire, and the demon is the epitome of chaotic/evil. Elementals are neutral. The general reclassification of various creatures is shown on Illustration II."

Hmm. Dunno if I can get the illustrations to C&P.

"Placement of characters upon a graph similar to that in Illustration I is necessary if the dungeonmaster is to maintain a record of player-character alignment. Initially, each character should be placed squarely on the center point of his alignment, i.e., lawful/good, lawful/evil, etc. The actions of each game week will then be taken into account when determining the current position of each character. Adjustment is perforce often subjective, but as a guide the referee can consider the actions of a given player in light of those characteristics which typify his alignment, and opposed actions can further be weighed with regard to intensity. For example, reliability does not reflect as intense a lawfulness as does principled, as does righteous. Unruly does not indicate as chaotic a state as does disordered, as does lawless. Similarly, harmless, friendly, and beneficial all reflect increasing degrees of good; while unpleasant, injurious, and wicked convey progressively greater evil. Alignment does not preclude actions which typify a different alignment, but such actions will necessarily affect the position of the character performing them, and the class or the alignment of the character in question can change due to such actions, unless counter-deeds are performed to balance things. The player-character who continually follows any alignment (save neutrality) to the absolute letter of its definition must eventually move off the chart (Illustration I) and into another plane of existence as indicated. Note that self- seeking is neither lawful nor chaotic, good nor evil, except in relation to other sapient creatures. Also, law and chaos are not subject to interpretation in their ultimate meanings of order and disorder respectively, but good and evil are not absolutes but must be judged from a frame of reference, some ethos. The placement of creatures on the chart of Illustration II. reflects the ethos of this writer to some extent.
Considering mythical and mythos gods in light of this system, most of the benign ones will tend towards the chaotic/good, and chaotic/evil will typify those gods which were inimical towards humanity. Some few would be completely chaotic, having no predisposition towards either good or evil — REH’s Crom perhaps falls into this category.
What then about interaction between different alignments? This question is tricky and must be given careful consideration. Diametric opposition exists between lawful/good and chaotic/evil and between chaotic/good and lawful/evil in this ethos. Both good and evil can serve lawful ends, and conversely they may both serve chaotic ends. If we presuppose that the universal contest is between law and chaos we must assume that in any final struggle the minions of each division would be represented by both good and evil beings. This may seem strange at first, but if the major premise is accepted it is quite rational. Barring such a showdown, however, it is far more plausible that those creatures predisposed to good actions will tend to ally themselves against any threat of evil, while creatures of evil will likewise make (uneasy) alliance in order to gain some mutually beneficial end — whether at the actual expense of the enemy or simply to prevent extinction by the enemy. Evil creatures can be bound to service by masters predisposed towards good actions, but a lawful/good character would fain make use of some chaotic/evil creature without severely affecting his lawful (not necessarily good) standing."
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Classic D&D / Re: OD&D Help needed to find missing stuff
« Last post by Pladohs Ghost on July 04, 2018, 10:20:07 PM »
I've been on a bit of a journey starting with the OD&D books and then combining the supplements into them, trying to use as much of original text and possible and bring certain aspects up-to-date without ruining the original concept (for example combining all the monster statistics together like in later editions).

Some points and rules seem to be debatable and I was wondering if anyone could guide me to where I could find answers, perhaps editions of Strategic Review or Dragon?

* what is the xp progression for higher level Fighting-Men, Magic-Users and Clerics
* do Druids attack and save as Clerics?
* rules regarding spell memorising, there is an indication that the spells/level matrix applies daily, but no rules as to how the character regains spells or actually needs to specify which spells beforehand (as per later editions)
* the alignment tables don't cover all monsters
* some monsters are missing statistics altogether, e.g. Brain Mole

Looking through SR, now. Will offer pertinent material as I find it.

"Spells: A magic-user can use a given spell but once during any given day, even if he is carrying his books with him. This is not to say that he cannot equip himself with a multiplicity of the same spell so as to have its use more than a single time. Therefore, a magic-user could, for example, equip himself with three sleep spells, each of which would be usable but once. He could also have a scroll of let us say two spells, both of which are also sleep spells. As the spelIs were read from the scrolls they would disappear, so in total that magic-user would have a maximum of five sleep spells to use that day. If he had no books with him there would be no renewal of spells on the next day, as the game assumes that the magic-use gains spells by preparations such as memor- izing incantations, and once the spell is spoken that particular memory pattern is gone completely. ln a similar manner spells are inscribed on a scroll, and as the words are uttered they vanish from the scroll."


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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« Last post by Lord Nikon on July 03, 2018, 06:00:08 AM »
Please bring back Blackstone's Vault and the old stuff!

I agree. I understand if you want to do other things, but I guess i'm one of those who just likes the old stuff. Many in the osr have embraced 5e, and that's fine. For me, though, D&D will always be locked during those years and the epic modules of the time. That's why I always enjoyed the reviews of the old modules the best of all.

Its very doubtful if BSV will come back. I can't force Nick to do the reviews, I can only ask him. The show is reaching 10 years, so we need to evolve and move onto different things to keep it fresh for us. Which is why we are reviewing the cartoon right now, its a fun little thing, where we can re-watch a childhood thing, and comment on things about the show and what monsters were what, how we'd handle it..etc.
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Classic D&D / OD&D Help needed to find missing stuff
« Last post by ian54 on July 02, 2018, 04:07:55 PM »
I've been on a bit of a journey starting with the OD&D books and then combining the supplements into them, trying to use as much of original text and possible and bring certain aspects up-to-date without ruining the original concept (for example combining all the monster statistics together like in later editions).

Some points and rules seem to be debatable and I was wondering if anyone could guide me to where I could find answers, perhaps editions of Strategic Review or Dragon?

* what is the xp progression for higher level Fighting-Men, Magic-Users and Clerics
* do Druids attack and save as Clerics?
* rules regarding spell memorising, there is an indication that the spells/level matrix applies daily, but no rules as to how the character regains spells or actually needs to specify which spells beforehand (as per later editions)
* the alignment tables don't cover all monsters
* some monsters are missing statistics altogether, e.g. Brain Mole
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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« Last post by longfoot on July 02, 2018, 02:39:19 PM »
Please bring back Blackstone's Vault and the old stuff!

I agree. I understand if you want to do other things, but I guess i'm one of those who just likes the old stuff. Many in the osr have embraced 5e, and that's fine. For me, though, D&D will always be locked during those years and the epic modules of the time. That's why I always enjoyed the reviews of the old modules the best of all.
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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« Last post by Lord Nikon on July 02, 2018, 01:50:12 PM »
Excellent!

Thanks!

A triumphant return, love the idea of reviewing the cartoons, but sounds a bit like what Something Awful have done. Please bring back Blackstone's Vault and the old stuff!

Glad you are into it, we were asked a long time ago, "why not review the cartoons?" -- figured as we are approaching 10 years, why not?
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Second Edition AD&D / Re: Question About Weapon Damage/Target Size
« Last post by AuldDragon on July 01, 2018, 05:36:43 PM »
There's also an interesting element in how the weapons most commonly favored by warriors deal extra damage against large creatures, while those usable by priests and wizards tend to deal less damage. So it also functions as a class ability for warriors.

Jeff
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Second Edition AD&D / Blibdoolpoolp the Sea Mother
« Last post by AuldDragon on July 01, 2018, 05:33:59 PM »
Nearly insane, Blibdoolpoolp the Sea Mother is patron of the declining subterranean race of kuo-toa. She hates humanity for the ancient wars that drove her race underground, and is well pleased when her followers sacrifice them to her. She is rumored to know great secrets of ancient magics, but in her insanity, she shares them with no one.

Jeff
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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« Last post by ian54 on June 29, 2018, 04:08:15 PM »
A triumphant return, love the idea of reviewing the cartoons, but sounds a bit like what Something Awful have done. Please bring back Blackstone's Vault and the old stuff!
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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« Last post by longfoot on June 29, 2018, 02:28:04 PM »
Excellent!
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