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Thread: Merc Capt CG?

  1. #1
    Kenneth Gauck
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    Merc Capt CG?

    - -----Original Message-----
    From: the Falcon
    Date: Tuesday, February 23, 1999 8:43 AM
    Subject: Re: [BIRTHRIGHT] - Alignment falwed?
    >
    >If you want some examples of CN characters in the AD&D game,
    >check out any mercenary captain. 9 of 10 times it'll be a CN.
    >Some merchants and wizards are CN as well. Take Orthien Tane
    >for example. Is he insane? I reckon not. What about that
    >renegade Khinasi necromancer? All different approaches to CN.
    >

    Machiavelli's warning against mercenaries must never have been so true as in
    your campaign. Rather than repeat my own descriptions of lawfulness once
    more, I shall quote the PHB, "Chaotic Neutral characters believe there is no
    order to anything ... they tend to follow whatever whim strikes them at the
    moment. Such characters have been known to cheerfully, and for no apparent
    reason, gamble away everything they have on the roll of a single dice."
    What uniformly bad behavior for an officer! Where is the troop discipline?
    Does he cheerfully throw away men's lives in battle? Does he lead his
    company of men away from the army over a petty slight, or on a whim?

    Many guidebooks were written in the age when mercenary captains were common,
    and they advocate quite lawful behavior, considering risk-taking and
    ill-discipline to be great vices.

    I will post a second note to deal with the illusion of a contradiction for
    those who think of Cuiraécen and would argue on this point.

    Kenneth Gauck
    c558382@earthlink.net

  2. #2
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    Merc Capt CG?

    > Machiavelli's warning against mercenaries must never have been so true as in
    > your campaign. Rather than repeat my own descriptions of lawfulness once
    > more, I shall quote the PHB, "Chaotic Neutral characters believe there is no
    > order to anything ... they tend to follow whatever whim strikes them at the
    > moment. Such characters have been known to cheerfully, and for no apparent
    > reason, gamble away everything they have on the roll of a single dice."
    > What uniformly bad behavior for an officer! Where is the troop discipline?
    > Does he cheerfully throw away men's lives in battle? Does he lead his
    > company of men away from the army over a petty slight, or on a whim?

    You can quote all you want, but that's just not what Chaotic Neutral
    entails to me. Hell, the above sounds just as stupid as saying the use of
    poison is inherently Evil. Clearly, the AD&D alignment system was written
    from a conservative, American point of view in the 70s.

    > Many guidebooks were written in the age when mercenary captains were common,
    > and they advocate quite lawful behavior, considering risk-taking and
    > ill-discipline to be great vices.

    Let me give you a short explaination as to how I see the mercenary captain
    in terms of alignment...
    The mercenary captain is Chaotic Neutral. Why?
    First of all, he owes no allegiance to any party; his only interests lie
    with himself and with his men. Thus, the neutral part.
    Second, they will fight for anyone, provided they will pay him and his
    man. He does not fight because of someone else's interests; he only
    fights to support himself and his men. Thus the chaotic part.
    Finally, I would like to emphasize that Chaotic characters can just as
    well be disciplined as Lawful or Neutral ones. They just have a different
    understanding between them and their leaders.

    > I will post a second note to deal with the illusion of a contradiction for
    > those who think of Cuiraécen and would argue on this point.

    I can't wait to read it.

    - the Falcon

  3. #3
    Binagran
    Guest

    Merc Capt CG?

    the Falcon wrote:

    > The mercenary captain is Chaotic Neutral. Why?
    > First of all, he owes no allegiance to any party; his only interests lie
    > with himself and with his men. Thus, the neutral part.

    I would have thought that the fact that his interests lie with himself AND his men
    puts him on the Good part of the scale. (He may fight for anyone, but he WILL
    protect his men. I don't know about you but that sounds pretty good to me.)

    > Second, they will fight for anyone, provided they will pay him and his
    > man. He does not fight because of someone else's interests; he only
    > fights to support himself and his men. Thus the chaotic part.

    Chaotic means they will fight for anyone???? I would've thought that neutralness
    meant they would fight for anyone. Does this mean that (for the sake of argument)
    a Neutral Evil mercenary leader will not fight for anyone because his evilness
    means he will only fight for evil causes?

    > Finally, I would like to emphasize that Chaotic characters can just as
    > well be disciplined as Lawful or Neutral ones. They just have a different
    > understanding between them and their leaders.

    How can a Chaotic character have any discipline when Chaos means disorder, and
    discipline seeks to bring order to chaos. The whole idea just doesn't make any
    sense, it seems to me that you're trying to say that CHAOS can equal ORDER when
    the two are at extremes from each other.Admittedly, you might have very different
    ideas as to what the term Chaos means to you, but I can only think that it means
    (at the very least) randomness. And randomness in a mercenary captain cannot but
    make him unpopular with his troops.

    Binagran

  4. #4
    Christopher Beattie
    Guest

    Merc Capt CG?

    At 10:04 PM 2/25/99 +0800, Binagran wrote:

    >the Falcon wrote:

    >> The mercenary captain is Chaotic Neutral. Why?
    >> First of all, he owes no allegiance to any party; his only interests lie
    >> with himself and with his men. Thus, the neutral part.

    >I would have thought that the fact that his interests lie with himself AND
    his men
    >puts him on the Good part of the scale. (He may fight for anyone, but he
    WILL
    >protect his men. I don't know about you but that sounds pretty good to me.)

    It all depends on the reasons why he will fight for his men. He will fight
    for his men because they need each other. That was why they banded together
    in the first place. He probably wouldn't risk his life to save another crew
    member unless that crew member was important. He sees the group as important,
    as opposed to the self, but doesn't yet quite grasp the more bigger picture
    of the poor the opressed. He is willing to extend his loyalty to a small
    clan but no further, thus he does not cross into the boundary of "good."

    >> Second, they will fight for anyone, provided they will pay him and his
    >> man. He does not fight because of someone else's interests; he only
    >> fights to support himself and his men. Thus the chaotic part.

    >Chaotic means they will fight for anyone???? I would've thought that
    neutralness
    >meant they would fight for anyone. Does this mean that (for the sake of
    argument)
    >a Neutral Evil mercenary leader will not fight for anyone because his
    evilness
    >means he will only fight for evil causes?

    No because "Evil" doesn't not always mean "works for the 'cause' of evil."
    Evil, first and foremost means the First person is first, at the expense
    of the second and thrid person. The Evil character looks out for Himself
    first and foremost. Since he is "Neutural" he is not bound by the "cause"
    of Evil, (as would be a Lawful Neutural character) and can choose between
    the cause and his primary objective, Himself, as necessary.

    So if a Paladin is in need of a mercenary group taking out a group of
    pirates, and is willing to pay enough money, the Neutural Evil might
    enlist himself and his men to the cause, but since the ends for him
    are first and foremost himself, he will use any means at his disposal
    (within reason) to accopmplish this task. Lie, poison, torture, etc.

    His thoughts for his "crew" are based simply on the basis of economy,
    he supports them because they in effect support him. But if push came
    to shove, if the only way to get ahead would be to throw his crew into
    the maw of the dragon, he would do that in a heartbeat, and he knows
    his crew would do the same thing to if they had the chance, so he makes
    sure that they never have the chance. Some trust, but a lot of verify.

    >> Finally, I would like to emphasize that Chaotic characters can just as
    >> well be disciplined as Lawful or Neutral ones. They just have a different
    >> understanding between them and their leaders.

    >How can a Chaotic character have any discipline when Chaos means disorder,
    and
    >discipline seeks to bring order to chaos. The whole idea just doesn't
    make any
    >sense, it seems to me that you're trying to say that CHAOS can equal ORDER
    when
    >the two are at extremes from each other.Admittedly, you might have very
    different
    >ideas as to what the term Chaos means to you, but I can only think that it
    means
    >(at the very least) randomness. And randomness in a mercenary captain
    cannot but
    >make him unpopular with his troops.

    I might argue with the Falcon here myself, but then again, "discipline"
    can be a vaguely defined term. Used in the manner of military discipline,
    the chaotic character has no discipline at all. Chaotic as in the alignment
    does not by any means mean random. It does mean that when the person wakes
    up every morning, if he doesn't feel there is a need to do the Lawful person's
    500 daily pushup routine, then he won't do it, and won't feel guilty about
    not doing it. Of course, if he knew that he was going to have to pass a
    physical exam that afternoon,or the next day, he would probably do it, but
    because of necessity, not because of daily required routines of order.

    If a lawful person comes across a regent who is legally under the law burning
    the witch, his hand would be stayed because he is witnessing a perfectly legal
    act. He might later work to have the law changed, but he would not "violate"
    the law. The chaotic person would (assuming both were good) see the violation
    of something preceived as "good" right then and now, placing the law as no
    importance, and rescue the lady right there on the spot, resisting all lawful
    attempts by the regent to arrest him and burn him as well.

    Thus in the same manner the "chaotic" person will use discipline as necessary
    in the course of his life. It is not a lifestyle for him, however, as it is
    with the lawful person. There are days when the chaotic person just feels
    like
    doing the dishes, arranging the CD's on his entertainment center, and so
    forth.
    It's just that he doesn't do it every day like the lawful person, more like
    once
    every other decade.

    | _______ |Christopher Beattie | 801 Eisenhower Dr|
    | /__ __\ Peace |Tantalus Inc. | Key West, FL 33040|
    | / \ and |Development Div. |Phone: (305) 293-8100|
    | /___\ Good |chrisb@Tansoft.com | Fax: (305) 292-7835|
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