View Full Version : Paladin Flavor

2013-08-04, 12:56 AM
So recently I have been giving my character a lot more thought. In my quest to come up with some flavor for my character, I am having difficulty coming up with flavor that isn't just me following the tenants of my god. Yes, those are important. But shouldn't Peregrin Honorarrow Thorngage the level 6 Halfling Paladin of Abadar be more?

I mean okay sure, he rides a boar named Tyrannus. That's a little flavor I guess. And I've just bought some fancy clothes, and am getting jewel encrusted small crossbow cufflinks and a gold plated chain for my coin purse. But these are really extensions of Abadar. What he would want and expect. How do I make Peregrin a toon with more substance? What am I missing? Or what is he missing? Does he need fears? How do you pick fears? Do I need stronger goals? Family wasn't a big part of his life, and I would like to make a goal without it, but other then getting rich, and helping the less fortunate, I am drawing blanks.

Basically, I have a cheerful Paladin that is very trusting, with a dumped wisdom and no sense motive (until he gets a headband.) Probably the only non-religious goal I have set, is to set an example that halflings are not thieves, and to encourage my brethren to not steal or cause mischief. Also, I don't play the jerk gotta be my way Paladin guy. And if you are curious, the campaign is PFCRB only. It seems this got long winded =x Hope My first post gets some reads.

2013-08-04, 01:02 AM
Flavor is something you actively do just as much as something you have. Give him quirks, mannerism and "talk funny" (aka roleplay) when you roleplay him.

2013-08-04, 01:29 AM
Figure out why he became a paladin.

Was he just naturally born to it? If so, how did that affect his relationships with other people? Were they jealous, did they put him on a pedestal, try to take advantage of him?

Was there something that made him want to follow this path, like emulating a hero or mentor, righting a specific wrong, or just realizing that the world could use more people who stood up for what was right?

Where did he learn how to fight? Who are his friends? What does he do for fun? What does he want to accomplish? What purpose is he going to serve in your game, and how is he likely to react to your players?

2013-08-04, 01:58 AM
Right so for the longest time I thought Paladins were sticks in the mud and made fun of them. Then a soon to be gm mocked me saying I'm predictable because I love me some Bards and Barbarians. So I took him up of this challenge and decided I want a halfling Paladin. He told me this is just a module so character isn't important. Nay the gauntlet hath been thrown down and I shall take this challenge.

So I thought about everything for this guy what made him think why he does stuff. I let his god play an integral part in who he was because that's how it should be, that's a Paladin. So I worshipped Kord I figured it fit well. I was brash and brave I would always volunteer for any task no matter how great and I would go the distance. Upon finding a village being haunted by a ghastly rider wielding a wicked scimitar I set to the townsfolk and standing in their huddled masses and laughed. "Fear not for I shall vanquish this foe" The people laughed or just ignored me. I didn't just do it for them I did it because that's who he was. He knew he could do it. He wasn't just this warrior though I put a soft side to him.

So I didn't want him to have a magical mount I wanted him to have a real creature for a mount. It was a dog named Blue. A cross breed between a basset hound and a german shepherd. He named it Blue because Red would be lying and he's a Paladin and Yellow would be mean.Blue's a friggin' coward but he's loyal to his master and braves the dangers for him. On our way to the town I made sure to bring along some hard boiled eggs for Blue and my lute since Blue liked to bark along to my playing. I took perform strings because it mattered to Percival. And since I was a knight in my head I had a squire I named Dudley. (He was apparently British. Think Woodhouse from Archer) I sent Dudley off to watch to see if a villain came by so we could trap him somewhere. I was worried about him the whole time I kept wanting to run off to check on him because I thought he died.

So I had a brave and brash warrior who rose to any occasion but took things lightheartedly and took time to enjoy his friends and those who were close to him.

Now for my second Paladin. He's a Petal. They're sissy little fey who are only a threat because they sing and make adventurers fall asleep. They then strip the adventurers down so they can have a good nights sleep and then some monster comes around to slit their throat. They also have a tendency to hide behind stronger fey or nature spirits. So I made a Paladin who despises hiding behind others. He ventures out to prove that success is not done with cowardice but bravery. His catchphrase "Death to fear."

He's a working progress but you get the idea.

Xuc Xac
2013-08-04, 10:13 AM
I am having difficulty coming up with flavor that isn't just me following the tenants of my god.

Why do you have to follow the tenants around? Couldn't you just drop by to pick up the rent once a month and leave them alone the rest of the time?

How do I make Peregrin a toon with more substance?

You can start by not thinking of him as a "toon" that you dress up and customize with accessories to make him different. Make him into a real character with an actual personality. Give him a three-dimensional personality and not the flat personality of a sitcom character based on a couple quirks and catchphrases. Make him a person.

IW Judicator
2013-08-04, 10:24 AM
What it boils down to is why he would choose the Paladin class over any other class that could be Lawful Good. If I may, I'd like to present the following anecdote:

For a Pathfinder game that never really got off the ground, I was going to run a Dwarf Fighter, Morgrim Thunderhammer. His special trait was the ability to stabilize someone with but a touch of his hand, no spell casting required. His parents were Clerics, and it seemed that he was destined to follow that path until a (relatively) low level Paladin came to town and, spotting natural talent, requested that he train the child as a Paladin, so that he could become a champion of justice for the dwarven people (instead of sitting around in the temple all day casting cure light wounds, remove disease, what have you). After some thought, it was agreed upon, and the young Morgrim set out with the Dwarf Paladin to begin his new life.

The life of a Paladin is no bed of roses, but they managed and as time went on Morgrim got a better understanding of how a Paladin operates, how they fight, why they fight...and was closing in on taking his first level of the class. However, one day, they came across a terrible sight: a group of travelers, frozen to the core in a mountain pass. A roar rang out through the woods. The paladin dropped his pack, told Morgrim to find someplace safe to set up camp, and to not come out until he said so, and left.

A day passed and Morgrim, worried for his master, disobeyed his orders and went out searching for him. He found him, half-buried under several tonnes of ice and rock, the tell-tale cries of a dragon calling out from beyond. Consumed with despair and rage, Morgrim took up his dead mentor's warhammer, vowed revenge on the dragon, and turned his back on the gods who had allowed his master, their willing servant, to die at the hands of a vile and wicked creature. A Paladin he would never be...but a champion of justice (albiet a grumpy one) he would...as a Fighter.

I recommend giving this guy a cause to fight against, specifically. A Favored Enemy, if you will (though not as the class feature). He might be rainbows and sunshine all day, every day...unless he's dealing with this personal antagonist of his. A young dragon that plagued his town (see above), a necromancer who violated his family mausoleum, a group of slavers who took his family captive, a nobleman who threw him in jail for no (at least in his mind) legitimate cause, a vampire who hunts/tries to corrupt him specifically because he comes from a line of skillful undead hunters, or even against a group who had allowed (even outright watched) terrible things happen to him/his community and didn't even lift a finger to aid them even as they begged for their salvation.

Failing that, perhaps he chose the paladin class for other reasons. Perhaps he owes a debt (to the church, to an adventurer, to ???) and believes the best way of fulfilling that debt would be to work as a Paladin. Alternatively, perhaps someone he knows is being blackmailed by...oh...lets say...a demon...and that he wants to help his friend get out of the demon's control via either conquest or discovering something as an adventurer that he could trade to the demon in exchange for his friend's freedom.

Hope this gives you some ideas. :smallsmile:

Toy Killer
2013-08-04, 10:44 AM
I'll just leave this here... (http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474976908598)

2013-08-04, 12:08 PM
I'll just leave this here... (http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474976908598)

Your link doesn't work for me. :smallfrown:

Wow, you guys have all been great, thank you.

I guess I kind of left some stuff out. Peregrin was almost captured by illegal slavers in a southron desert city (DM created world we are in) He was exausted from running when he fell onto the steps of the Church of Abadar, where Adjuster Johannes happened to open the door, and take Peregrin in. leaving the slavers high and dry. Abadar called Peregrin at that time in his life, for the Great Orc war that was being waged on the continent. Called into the service of the normally peaceful Abadar, Peregrin was sent north to do battle with the orc hordes. There, in Rad Bloodoathe's company Peregrin honed his skills with the longbow, taking hundreds, if not thousands of orc lives in the drive to push the orcs back.

Peregrin has reunited with 3 of members of Bloodoathes company, and is adventuring with them now. Brothers in arms. Friends. People that Peregrin would do anything for.

So the real question is, how do those experiences effect my character? Or how do I make them a part of my character without out constantly repeating, "I faught in the great orc war guys!" Is it a hatred for orcs? That feels passe. Same for hating slavers. Maybe Peregrin wants to ensure all souls are free? That none should be shackled?

Perhaps he owes a debt

I like it. I was thinking maybe something like a Halfling somewhere along the road, or after the war, that Peregrin has lost, or couldn't find to repay.

Why do you have to follow the tenants around? Couldn't you just drop by to pick up the rent once a month and leave them alone the rest of the time?

You are right of course. I should collect their rent once a month, and just stick to the tenets of my god.

IW Judicator
2013-08-04, 12:39 PM
I like it. I was thinking maybe something like a Halfling somewhere along the road, or after the war, that Peregrin has lost, or couldn't find to repay.

Hmm...in that case, what about his company commander or other ranking officer? Perhaps they saved his life at the cost of their own (...OR DID THEY? After all, they could have simply disappeared into an orc horde and disappeared) or even just another comrade in arms. It could be as simple as wanting to return the deceased's belongings to the family, with his condolences, or as complicated as swearing a life debt to his successor (Wife? Child?) and serving as their guardian...though he does not know where they are and needs to gather up the funding for a divination (or bribery). Or...if we really want to twist the knife...it could have been his lover, and he desperately wants to resurrect him/her and summarily repay the debt/be brought together once more.

Or perhaps he's heard rumors that the orc hordes are regrouping after all this time and wants investigate, so that he knows if he needs to try to stop the violence before it can begin again, so that such losses will not be repeated.