Tag: rpg

Friday Night D&D – Things that Go Bump

Friday Night D&D – Things that Go Bump

I think that this idea can be used as a campaign or as a one shot, depending on what you want to do with it. When using iconic monsters like werewolves, vampires, and other classic monsters, you can always turn it into a one off […]

D&D Alignment: True Neutral

D&D Alignment: True Neutral

The alignments are interesting because, in the middle you have this state of both being neutral on the good and evil axis and the law and chaos axis. And I don’t know that I have the greatest grasp on what this true neutral position is […]

D&D Alignments – Neutral Good

D&D Alignments – Neutral Good

Neutral is an interesting position to talk about when it comes to Dungeons and Dragons characters. I mainly have a harder time nailing down what I think it is and how you use it in role playing.

I think, the best way that I can describe neutral is that you’re going to do the best option in a given situation based off of the other part of your alignment. So a neutral good character is going to do what they perceive as the best option after they’ve thought about it. Neutral is going to lean away from the impulsive that you can get with both Chaotic and Lawful alignments. In the case of a neutral good character, if they are in a just land, they are going to appear fairly lawful, because the laws are just. However, they aren’t basing their decision off of the law being there, they are basing off of what they believe to be good in the given situation.

Image Source: D&D Beyong

This is going to create a more introspective character, which is going to be better for a character who is less combat focused. The martial classes like fighter and barbarian aren’t going to be the best fits. And as normal, classes like rogue and warlock which can have a more chaotic bent to them, don’t fit the easiest. With that said, any class can be any alignment. I think the two classes that I would lean towards playing Neutral Good would be Druid and Monk.

For me, both the Druid and the Monk classes are those more focused on the long view of things. The druid is surrounded by nature which is going to do what is good for it, and when looking at how long a tree can live and how unchanging mountains are, a druid will take a longer view and more of a loo at what is good. And they are not just going to look at the good for the people living in the land, but also of the land itself. A monk has meditation and that calm and martial arts sort of feeling for their play style. While they can go out with a rush of action and hit you a lot, it seems more like their traditions are built around the discipline of learning those skills versus using them, so again it fits with that long view of figuring out what is good before taking any action.

Let’s look a little bit back at some of them that are less ideal? How could you make a fighter into a lawful good character? I think that it is not that difficult because you would have the jaded soldier who thought that the laws of the land were good, but then saw violence done in the name of those laws against those who were only guilty of not being from that land. While they understand that the sword can be a tool of justice, they weigh it out to determine if using the sword is going to be the just option and the good option or if there is another way. And while they might not themselves know how to do the other option or at least do it well, they can know that the sword is not the right option. The rogue is also fairly easy, because they can have a Robin Hood sort of mindset. They will only ever steal from someone that they know is evil. And they will only do so to improve the state of the common folk who are being oppressed, and not for their own riches.

Image Source: D&D Beyond

Now, you still need to tie those things into why you’d go adventuring. Even the monk and druid. Generally you have to threaten something that they think is good. For a druid that might be their grove. For a fighter that might be a people that they see as innocents. If I were to play a neutral good character that would be the direction that I’d lean into it anyways. I’m sure that there are other ways to play a neutral good character that I haven’t mentioned yet.

If you have some interesting ideas for playing a neutral good character, leave them in the comments below. If you have played one, let me know how you did that, and what the story of your character was.

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D&D Alignment – Lawful Evil

D&D Alignment – Lawful Evil

Welcome to the dark side of Dungeons and Dragons. Today we’re looking at the only evil alignment, in my opinion, that would make sense to join a generally good adventuring party, and that is why they make an interesting character. I also think that Lawful […]

Friday Night D&D – When Aliens Attack

Friday Night D&D – When Aliens Attack

Wait, wait, wait, isn’t Dungeons and Dragons fantasy? Yeah, Dungeons and Dragons is epic fantasy and we’re adding aliens into the mix. And not just some weird creatures from another plane, we’re adding in spaceships and craziness like that to Dungeons and Dragons, deal with […]

D&D Alignment – What is Alignment?

D&D Alignment – What is Alignment?

I think this is the last big character creation piece that I haven’t touched on. I’ve previously done series of articles on the Classes, Backgrounds, and how to develop an interesting backstory. But I’ve only touched on the various alignments in passing. Some of that is because the alignment system can be somewhat controversial and can be used as a reason to be a jerk while playing. What I’m hoping to do with this series of articles is go through and show how you can use alignment in your game to inform your characters decisions.

Image Source: Wizards

So, let’s start, what is alignment?

Alignment is the moral touchstone for your character that has been laid out in Dungeons and Dragons and used some in other role playing systems to give you a better idea how to play your character. There are two axis for alignment, from good to evil and from lawful to chaotic, with neutral between both pairs, so you end up with nine different alignments.

When you create your character, you select one of these nine different alignments for your character. You can use that alignment as a filter to make the decisions for your character. And it’s possible during the game that your alignment will change, but that will be up to you and possibly your Dungeon Master if that happens. In most cases, going up from Neutral to Good or Evil to Neutral will be informed more by your Dungeon Master, but if you have a character that falls from Good to Neutral that’s something that can come from either direction.

How do you pick an alignment?

I personally think that it ties into what you want to do for your backstory a lot. The story you will create will help inform if you are a law abiding character or a character who is out to cause trouble. Your class can also determine some of that as well, though there are both Paladin and Cleric sub classes that allow you to play a fallen or evil version of both classes. However, normally both will align with Good or at least Neutral and generally both will lean more lawful while someone like a Rogue would be more chaotic.

If you don’t have an idea for a backstory, the Dungeons and Dragons backgrounds can help you pick out your alignment as some of the items that you roll, personality traits, flaws, bonds, and ideals will help inform that decision and give suggestions base off of which one you pick from the list or randomly roll.

But what does alignment really mean?

Image Source: D&D Beyond

This is where alignment is controversial. Some people use it as a crutch for their character to be a jerk. Something like a Chaotic Neutral Rogue stealing from party members would be an example of this. It might annoy everyone at the table, but if they can’t roll a high enough perception to catch her as she stealth’s and steals, there’s nothing that the players can do. Or the dumb Barbarian who gets bored as a Chaotic Neutral character and randomly picks fights, and then in the presence of the king decides to pick a fight. Players at time will say something along the lines of “It’s what my character would do because I’m chaotic neutral.” But really it’s more about wanting to play that jerk character and have the spotlight. The same can be the case for the Lawful Good Paladin who won’t go into the tavern because they don’t drink, who will stab anyone if they do anything wrong, but then will also refuse to go along with any plan that might be a little bit morally grey. Or it would be the true neutral druid, so neutral on both the lawful and chaotic scale as well as the good and evil scale, who then refuses to get involved in anything and won’t latch onto they are neutral and just at peace with the world.

But that’s the extreme. When alignment works well, you use it to inform some decisions and a touchstone for your character in the long run. That means that your Chaotic Neutral rogue might not steal from the party, though borrowing something from someone they don’t like and forgetting to return it, that’s a possibility. Or a Paladin might look the other way when the rogue does steal a bunch of money, and even take a share that they then donate to the church. But those are all fairly specific examples still, I think more generally, alignment is what you use when you aren’t sure which of two options or more that your character would take. Instead of agonizing over a long time, if you can’t come to a fast decision, you look at see which options aligns most closely with your alignment. Using it that way, you can have a fully developed character, as even in real life, some people might be lawful good when it comes to one area and chaotic neutral in another area of their life. So don’t let your alignment stop you from playing like you want.

So what’s coming next in this series on alignment?

We’re going to go through the nine different spots on the alignment matrix. I’m going to do an article on each one of those so you can get a better idea of what they mean and how you can use them in your role playing.

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Friday Night D&D – The Devil’s Maw

Friday Night D&D – The Devil’s Maw

We are back for our regular Friday special, looking at a grim world where hell has come to earth. But it’s not all bad or is it? A portal from the abyss has opened up a few generations ago in terms of humans, and probably […]

Friday Night D&D – Zombie Apocalypse

Friday Night D&D – Zombie Apocalypse

The name says it all really, we’re going to be doing a zombie apocalypse. However, we aren’t going to be playing the game where the players are trying to stop it. Instead, we’re going to pull from things like The Walking Dead, Dead of Winter, […]

GenCon Vol 2 – Events

GenCon Vol 2 – Events

Woo… we’ve reached the point where event registration is open for GenCon. Let’s talk a little about how the process went with getting registered for events.

There are two big things to note that we did, since there were two of us, when when we went through and picked events, we always selected, a ticket for yourself and one other person, and only process it if you can get both tickets. This meant that we would get into events with the other person always, and since it was our first year, it’s a good way to get a feel for what is going on and both of us will be able to keep track of it better. In future years, I could see us branching off and doing our own thing, or if we get more people to join us, then we might also see more splitting up on events.

The other thing we did was we had both of us grab the events in our wishlist, so that when the moment came to process everything, we could both hit submit for processing and whomever got onto the wait list higher would make the purchase. Turns out that the other person I’m going with was able to get in about 1000 people higher on the list than I was.

Image Source: Brain Games

Even with that, there were several events that were sold out that we were interested in. Out of the fourteen or fifteen we had our our lists, by the time we were at the top of the queue, we were down to nine that we could get into. Once the wishlist is processed, we didn’t have to worry about our spots, so we decided to drop two and got down to seven events that we’re doing.

Overall, it ended up costing us $46 for those few events. GenCon charges for the events that you get into because, otherwise, you’d end up with people signing up for a ton of things and then just skipping out on them or doubling up on things and picking whatever one they felt like doing more. While I don’t love dishing out extra cash when I did already for the con itself, I get why, with 60,000 people that you’d need to do that.

So what are we doing?

Thursday: 3 PM
Role Player Adventures – Role Player is an interesting game where you are rolling up a D&D character, basically, and using abilities to manipulate your stats. The original game to me felt like half a game, but with a name like Adventures, I’m assuming we’re going to use our characters for something, such as adventuring, instead of just rolling them up. This one is also interesting because it’s a prototype of a game that they’ll be coming out with.

Friday:
9 AM
Savage Dresden – Our one RPG on the list, Savage World is the system that we’re going to be playing in, and I don’t know anything about that system. But the world we’re playing in, the the world of Dresden Files, and if you can’t tell, I really like the Dresden Files series, so I’m excited to play an RPG in that setting, though it won’t actually have Dresden in it.
6 PM
Village Attacks – Our most expensive game on the schedule. But this was the game that I really wanted to get into, and the other person I’m going with was excited with as well. And you do get something out of it more than just playing a game. You get a scenario with it, now you obviously need to own the game, which I don’t. But Village Attacks seems fun, because you’re playing the monsters dealing with the Villagers who are coming after you with pitchforks and torches while you just try and live your best life.

Image Credit: Amazon

Saturday
9 AM
Ice Cool North American Championships – This one is just a bit silly, it’s the penguin flicking game that I really like. However, one that I’m just okay at. But they have a North American Championship there with a chance to go to the World Championship in Latvia. It should be a silly time, I don’t expect to do all that well, but I’ll put some effort into training, plus I can say that I competed North American Championship.
8 PM
Hobbit Drinking with Marc Gunn – I don’t know much about Marc Gunn, but apparently he does nerdy drinking songs. That should be fairly entertaining event to just sit back and enjoy. A good laid back thing after an a morning of competing at penguin flicking.

Sunday
10 AM
Harry Potter Miniatures Game – I know nothing about this game, other than that it’s a Harry Potter game. It seemed like something interesting to checkout on Sunday when things will be slowing down as a lot of people will be leaving early. We’re actually staying around that whole day, so that should be fun. All I know is that I want to be Neville.
2 PM
Marvel Legendary – Now, you know I’m not a huge fan of this game, but it’s a play and win event. So you have a chance to come out of it with something, and the other person is a huge Marvel Legendary fan. I’ve grown to like it a bit more, but it’ll be nice to not have to learn how to play a new game again.

That’s my GenCon schedule. GenCon also does one nice thing, and that’s that you can buy generic tickets. Using the generic tickets, you can get into an event you didn’t sign up for, if there is still room. So I got $6 worth of those, they come in as $2 tickets, so if an event costs $4, I’d need to use 2 tickets. But I feel like that’s a pretty nice schedule for GenCon and I’m really excited for it.

Next article on GenCon will talk about different places or things that I’m thinking about doing around the Con, since we won’t want to be there all the time, or only eat the Con food.

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Malts and Meeples

Malts and Meeples

Hey! Second post today, woo hoo. This time it’s introducing the new Nerdologists Youtube Channel – Malts and Meeples. Malts and Meeples is going to be the channel where I play solo board games and do RPG related content. We’ll probably be getting some content […]