Support the GITP forums on Patreon
Help support GITP's forums (and ongoing server maintenance) via Patreon
Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 190
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    Daemon

    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Gender
    Male

    Default Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Inspired by the latest of the many "ZOMG MIKO IS EVIL!?!?" threads, and the responses concerning what constitutes an evil act, someone mentioned that killing for no (apparent?) reason at all is CN, not evil.

    By this reasoning, killing someone simply because they exist is also chaotic neutral? i truly doubt this myself.

    But anyway,
    there is one such character that comes to mind that does exactly that - the 2000AD character Judge Death.

    Those of you familiar with Judge Death might recall that he's a semi-ethereal being of pure malevolence who has "judged" existance (or more exactly, life) to be a crime punishable only by nonexistance/death. As cunning as he is, the methods he uses are cruel and grusome, random and based on how much he can kill and hurt in the shortest time-frame possible.

    What would you say his alignment is?

    Considering he calls himself a Judge and that he's simply following "the law" of ending all concievable life, one could argue that he is in fact lawful neutral.

    However, considering that he more than anything seems like a perverse and vile mockery of the Street Judges (and Judge Dredd in particular) - all of whom I'd generally place at lawful neutral - wearing a warped version of the Street Judge uniform, he could just as easily be either lawful evil or even chaotic evil, considering how much he revels in slaughter.

    So, maybe the real answer is that indiscriminately murdering (or at least turning everyone into undead - as long as they aren't alive) simply because the victims are alive is in fact a neutral/true evil act?

    What are your thoughts?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Georgia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    I'd put him at Lawful Neutral.
    He's not Good, so there goes Lawful Good. He's not doing it for personal gain, so he's not Lawful Evil. If he has an internally-consistent sense of doing what he's doing to enforce a greater order, then he's probably Lawful...just an extreme example of it.

    Mind you, I think any of the alignments taken to an extreme would send moderate people screaming into the streets sooner or later.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Taking enjoyment from causing harm, simply because it's harm, is a clear evil trait.

    If it were simply a matter of holding all living beings as due for a death sentence by the most expedient means available, that might be an extremely disturbing form of lawful neutral. Not that that should stop any sane person from either killing the thing or running away as fast as possible, depending on relative power levels. Joyously painting the walls with the blood of your not-quite-dead victim, on the other hand, is almost certainly an indicator of evil...

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    It's evil. It's clearly and obviously evil. I don't know if the argument you mention in the other thread may have been more nuanced than you describe, but those nuances don't really apply here. He may be lawful or he may be chaotic, that's often hard to determine, but he's certainly evil.

    Ask this question: what would make him not evil?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sardia View Post
    He's not doing it for personal gain, so he's not Lawful Evil.
    I don't agree that "personal gain" is the criteria that determines Evil.
    Last edited by kamikasei; 2007-03-22 at 07:16 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Deus Mortus's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    The Netherlands, Deventer
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
    Joyously painting the walls with the blood of your not-quite-dead victim, on the other hand, is almost certainly an indicator of evil...
    Now I have the image of a gay designer going "You know what would be like totally awesoooome on that wall, the color of the blood of newborn, it's a nice shade to contrast the couch and it really lights up the room, lovely don't you think?"
    Last edited by Deus Mortus; 2007-03-22 at 07:17 PM.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Georgia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by kamikasei View Post
    I don't agree that "personal gain" is the criteria that determines Evil.
    Look at it this way-- if a lion catches a limping child out on the plains, runs it down, chews on it until it dies, then loses interest and moves on, the lion isn't evil-- it's explicitly stated that animals like the lion are neutral. It's just doing what it does without the slightest thought of good or evil.

    Now, not being totally familiar with Judge Death, the one question I have is how much joy (if any) he takes in the suffering of others. That would probably affect the answer.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Based on Judge Death's Wiki entry, I think it's fair to say he's Evil. If one applies the "personal gain" standard, then the gain here is personal pleasure (the character is a sadist, after all).

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Georgia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by greenknight View Post
    Based on Judge Death's Wiki entry, I think it's fair to say he's Evil. If one applies the "personal gain" standard, then the gain here is personal pleasure (the character is a sadist, after all).
    Yep, that'd do it. Put me down as calling him Lawful Evil, then, due to attitude.
    Last edited by Sardia; 2007-03-22 at 07:52 PM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ElfWarriorGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Haven't looked at Judge Death's wiki, but I will before we end this debate. First off, it is difficult to judge someone's alignment by a single (or even a few) actions. No one action or course of action defines an alignment.

    But can we judge the alignment of a single act? Perhaps. Indiscriminate killing is probably evil, because we define evil from the perspective of living beings. We value our own lives. We want others to value them, so we have to place an intrinsic value on all lives. If it's wrong for you to kill me; it's wrong for me to kill you; it's wrong to kill anyone (with certain exceptions).

    But if we eliminate the premise that life is intrinsically valuable, we cannot make that distinction. Although I think animals are neutral because they lack moral accountability, the lion example demonstrates my point. If life has no intrinsic value, it becomes a resource to be expended like any other. That's why it's not evil for the lion to kill his prey. Animal life does not have the same intrinsic value as human(oid) life and thus it's OK to kill animals for food. The predators right to life supercedes the prey's right to life.

    I admit that I'm suggesting that morality is relative and it depends on what you believe. However, D&D has a fixed morality and we have to accept that life has intrinsic value and killing without moral justification is wrong, i.e. evil.

    However, the lion example again steps in and provides a moral justification for certain killings. If a lion destroys even the intrinsically valuable human life, that act is not evil, becuase animals are not morally culpable. Lions cannot choose between good and evil. And this gets us back to Judge Death. His mistaken (but honest) belief that life has no value (and actually has negative value) eliminates his moral culpability. He, like the lion, cannot make a moral decision, because he is morally impaired- he does not know right from wrong and cannot make the correct moral choice. His actions are unaligned.

    Does this unbalance the game or make alignments useless? No, it just accepts that some people are insane, mentally retarded, demon-possessed (or otherwise morally impaired). A player should not successfully rely on the insanity defense unless they have DM approval.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    DwarfFighterGuy

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Novi Sad (Serbia)
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Sardia View Post
    Look at it this way-- if a lion catches a limping child out on the plains, runs it down, chews on it until it dies, then loses interest and moves on, the lion isn't evil-- it's explicitly stated that animals like the lion are neutral. It's just doing what it does without the slightest thought of good or evil.

    Now, not being totally familiar with Judge Death, the one question I have is how much joy (if any) he takes in the suffering of others. That would probably affect the answer.
    Animals are neutral because they can't tell diference between good and evil, not directly because their int. Though they cannot tell diference because they are not very inteligent (this is RAW I think). If you are aware that you are doing evil deeds then you are evil, but if you are for some reason unaware (like if you are mentaly ill) then you are not automaticaly evil. I'm not familiar with this judge but painting walls with someone's blood can be neutral if you are somehow unable to make diference between good and evil.
    It's like in movies when serial killers kill people and believe they are helping them by sending them to heaven. They do this because they think it is good for the people they kill not because they like it. This isn't evil IMO. Those killers need help or something but they are not evil.

    Though I cannot think of reason why would somebody think that it is good to paint walls with other person's blood.
    Last edited by marjan; 2007-03-22 at 10:29 PM.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    I wouldn't go *that* far. You don't have to know that you're evil to be evil. You do have to have a basic understanding of concepts like the suffering of others, though, which animals have at most very vaguely.

    I can't tell from the wiki entry if Judge Death is so psychotic as to have lost touch with these basic things (in which case, however analytically clever he may be, he's as neutral as an animal), but assuming he's capable of...well...judgment, then he's clearly LE.
    My latest homebrew: Gastrus

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Orc in the Playground
     
    OzymandiasVolt's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Yes.
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Judge Death is blatantly evil. He's guilty of mass murder on a grand scale. I'll never be able to understand how people can convince themselves people like him are neutral.
    "Of course you should fight fire with fire. You should fight everything with fire." - Jaya Ballard, task mage

    STFUitP

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Krellen's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    It is impossible to argue he is anything but Chaotic Evil (though of course people will, since a lot of people don't take the time to really "get" the alignment system, or even look at the examples set forward.)

    As for why, precisely, he is Chaotic Evil, it's clear from reading the description of Chaotic Evil in the SRD:
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    A chaotic evil character does whatever his greed, hatred, and lust for destruction drive him to do. He is hot-tempered, vicious, arbitrarily violent, and unpredictable. If he is simply out for whatever he can get, he is ruthless and brutal. If he is committed to the spread of evil and chaos, he is even worse.
    Bolded the most relevant parts. Sure, Judge Death is somewhat "predictable" - in that you can be reasonably sure he's going to kill you - but he is driven by an incessant need to destroy, torture, maim and kill. That is the very essence of Chaotic Evil; thus, so is he.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ElfWarriorGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    @OV- what makes killing people evil? If its the deaths, than a natural disaster is evil. Everyone eventually dies, so time (or life or giving birth) is evil. We kill animals all the time, so are we evil? Even killing humans (or humanoids in a game setting) is acceptable under certain circumstances. What is the distinction? How do we know when the ending of a particular life is an evil act?

    If we take moral culpability out of the equation, the question makes no sense. There must be some notion of the moral value of the action and also the actor's awareness of that moral value. If not, morality is not about right and wrong, but whether or not we agree with the result achieved.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by OzymandiasVolt View Post
    Judge Death is blatantly evil. He's guilty of mass murder on a grand scale. I'll never be able to understand how people can convince themselves people like him are neutral.
    Because if he weren't a vicious, sadistic monster as he is reported to be, and were actually motivated by "The crime is life, the sentence is death!" (which the Wiki seems to say was his actual basis in an alternate version), he'd be nothing more than a merciless enforcer of an extremely bizarre code. Enforcing a code without applying moral judgment to it is a perfect example of LN. It just so happens that, while he may have "compunctions about killing the innocent" (PHB p104), he's never met an innocent, by his standards, who it was possible to kill.

    As a vicious, sadistic monster who explicitly joined with the forces of 'law' to have an excuse for killing, he's more of an 'any evil' type. I'd actually say probably neutral rather than lawful or chaotic. Claiming to be a law enforcer, or even being employed as one, doesn't imply a lawful alignment. (But it does imply some degree of willingness and ability to work the system...not usually a CE trait)

    About animals...if they were sapient, your typical animal would be NE, with some individual or species lawful or chaotic. Animals, pretty consistently, are completely unconcerned with lives other than their own and in some cases those of their immediate family. However, moral classifications aren't attached to non-sapient creatures in D&D. At a guess, this is to keep paladins from going insane any time they accidentally scan a beehive. It doesn't mean that a thinking creature with a poor or erroneous understanding of good and evil gets off the hook.
    Last edited by Ulzgoroth; 2007-03-22 at 11:16 PM.

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Krellen's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Desaril View Post
    @OV- what makes killing people evil?
    I'm not OV, but - The SRD does:
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    "Evil" implies hurting, oppressing, and killing others. Some evil creatures simply have no compassion for others and kill without qualms if doing so is convenient. Others actively pursue evil, killing for sport or out of duty to some evil deity or master.
    Hurting, oppressing, killing. That's the definition of evil.

    Things without intelligence (or with animal intelligence) get a pass, mainly because they don't wontonly kill. If an animal kills, it's for one of three reasons: 1) territory, 2) food, 3) defense. Those situations don't really fall under the purvue of "evil", especially since one can escape said death just by running far enough away. An animal never kills because it's "convenient".

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Banned
     
    EvilElitest's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Oh gods i wish i knew
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Sardia View Post
    I'd put him at Lawful Neutral.
    He's not Good, so there goes Lawful Good. He's not doing it for personal gain, so he's not Lawful Evil. If he has an internally-consistent sense of doing what he's doing to enforce a greater order, then he's probably Lawful...just an extreme example of it.

    Mind you, I think any of the alignments taken to an extreme would send moderate people screaming into the streets sooner or later.
    God damit, what is with all these pity cases? Killing for no reason is an evil act. And before people bring up aligments on animals, they don't have the int or the motive for such actions sort of the rare insane case. The lion that kills the kid musth have wanted to eat him, but changed its mind. No high int, no morals. A lion that eats it babies for no reason, i would call insane, and evil at that.

    Barry the Chopper says when asks why he kills

    "Why? What a strange little question, i surrpose because i enjoy it."
    Ed (who is a captive and main charcter) "What kind of person would kill for such a foolish reason like that?"
    Barry "Because i can. Men have morals, but send them to war and they have no problem killing eachother in the most brutal of fashions. Why is that?"
    Ed "I have no idea."
    Barry "Because deep down we all want to kill, we just need an excuse. I don't need such an excuse, i kill people for the sole intoxicating feeling of having blood between my fingers, to reduce people to their most basic building blocks. I KILL THEREFOR I AM"
    Not all put together, but extra points for however knows the show this is from. Anywas, mindless killing is evil. And that included the judge, as he has no right to take other's lives to further his own ideals.

    Because if he weren't a vicious, sadistic monster as he is reported to be, and were actually motivated by "The crime is life, the sentence is death!" (which the Wiki seems to say was his actual basis in an alternate version), he'd be nothing more than a merciless enforcer of an extremely bizarre code. Enforcing a code without applying moral judgment to it is a perfect example of LN. It just so happens that, while he may have "compunctions about killing the innocent" (PHB p104), he's never met an innocent, by his standards, who it was possible to kill.

    As a vicious, sadistic monster who explicitly joined with the forces of 'law' to have an excuse for killing, he's more of an 'any evil' type. I'd actually say probably neutral rather than lawful or chaotic. Claiming to be a law enforcer, or even being employed as one, doesn't imply a lawful alignment. (But it does imply some degree of willingness and ability to work the system...not usually a CE trait
    No, just because you can hide behind a code does not make you not evil. A LN person might be able to commit some evil acts, but their code has to be good for that to pass and they can't be breaking it. By you defination, only deamons and devils are evil and that would make Redcloak good.

    from,
    EE
    Last edited by EvilElitest; 2007-03-22 at 11:13 PM.

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Just over the Dutch border in Belgium
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Through the intent rather then action argument?

    This refers to the lion argument, and it's a subjective moral viewpoint - do we consider certain action to be inherently evil, or does evil require evil intent?

    If the lion, despite killing indiscriminately, is neutral because he does not have evil intent (because he is incapable of understanding the concept of evil) then a similar argument can go for this Judge Death thingy.

    EDIT: whoa, leaving threads in tabs doesn't work so well when it's a "hot thread". My response was directed at OzymandiasVolts post
    Last edited by ElHugo; 2007-03-22 at 11:21 PM. Reason: Outdated

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    NemoUtopia's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    wouldn't YOU like to know
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Everything I know about Judge Death screams "insane NE." Why? Well, he/it is clearly insane, for one thing. That aside, the "judgment against life" is just the being's rationalization and not really an indicator of lawfulness...he/it follows no codes that I can think of other than "kill and enjoy it." Also, he doesn't exactly seem to be chaotic...he's neither going to pretend he's not evil to try and get away or do anything random unless it is specifically taking up an opportunity he/it didn't know about to kill some more. Put in another way:

    Judge Death, in D&D terms, is a fiend. He/it is neither from Baator (The Nine Hells) nor the Abyss, and would not participate in the Blood War. He/it would just go and try to kill, kill, kill. Judge Death represents just that, death, and could basically be an avatar of Nerull.
    Awesome avatar by potatocubed

    Without improvisation, magic is inherently limited

    Spoiler
    Show

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Banned
     
    EvilElitest's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Oh gods i wish i knew
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by NemoUtopia View Post
    Everything I know about Judge Death screams "insane NE." Why? Well, he/it is clearly insane, for one thing. That aside, the "judgment against life" is just the being's rationalization and not really an indicator of lawfulness...he/it follows no codes that I can think of other than "kill and enjoy it." Also, he doesn't exactly seem to be chaotic...he's neither going to pretend he's not evil to try and get away or do anything random unless it is specifically taking up an opportunity he/it didn't know about to kill some more. Put in another way:

    Judge Death, in D&D terms, is a fiend. He/it is neither from Baator (The Nine Hells) nor the Abyss, and would not participate in the Blood War. He/it would just go and try to kill, kill, kill. Judge Death represents just that, death, and could basically be an avatar of Nerull.
    Well done, but i would say CE, as NE seems a bit more self serving in nature, and LE would not tolerate such chaotic acts. He can delusion himself, but he is CE in my book. As for fiend, in you mean it isn a poetic sense, well done.
    from,
    EE

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Krellen's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Chaos isn't just "random"; it's also a love of conflict, competition and change.

    While Judge Death fits some aspects of Neutral Evil, he's a blatant violation of others:
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    A neutral evil villain does whatever she can get away with. She is out for herself, pure and simple. She sheds no tears for those she kills, whether for profit, sport, or convenience. She has no love of order and holds no illusion that following laws, traditions, or codes would make her any better or more noble. On the other hand, she doesn’t have the restless nature or love of conflict that a chaotic evil villain has.
    Judge Death doesn't just sit idle after wiping out life; he immediately has to move on to another inhabited place to wipe it out. He actively searches for new ways to kill more people. He thrives on the destruction, fear, pain and suffering of his victims - so much so that he is driven ever onwards to kill. That drive is the Chaos; he is, in fact, very much like Demons. He would participate in the Blood War, because it would be a perfect way to end more life.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest View Post
    No, just because you can hide behind a code does not make you not evil. A LN person might be able to commit some evil acts, but their code has to be good for that to pass and they can't be breaking it. By you defination, only deamons and devils are evil and that would make Redcloak good.

    from,
    EE
    You should re-position the quote tags on that...

    Why on earth would that be? Let me take it in two parts:

    -...Their code has to be good...
    What definition of 'good' are you applying to this code that allows its obedient follower to be other than good? This completely erases the LN alignment.

    A LN character is (can be) one who takes their 'moral' direction from their code, and doesn't yield (or balances) to pressures from either side of the good-evil axis. The moral character of the code itself is completely beside the point.

    -Only fiends would be evil, Redcloak would be good.
    Redcloak would be good...um, if neutral were the same as good, and if "hobgoblins suffering horrible deaths at random is desirable" were an element of a code (I can't quite fathom how) rather than a personal recreation. I think that covers that. And addresses how non-fiends could be evil.

    Neutral 'senseless killing' works like this: First, discover that the subject is not innocent, by some standard you follow, and is in fact deserving of a nasty end. Optionally, develop hatred for subject based on their wrongdoing. Then kill them.
    Evil senseless killing is more like this: First, notice that you want to kill the subject...either just because, or because you get some gain thereby. Optionally, make up a justification. Then kill them.

    EDIT:
    While I can't disprove the 'restless nature or love of conflict', I see no evidence that Judge Death has either. What he has is a love of killing (Evil, neither chaotic nor lawful), which isn't something you can satisfy without getting out a bit. If he could somehow arrange for helpless people to walk into a convenient slaughterhouse continuously as he 'executed' them, I don't think he'd get bored...though he probably would be looking for ways to do even better, on general principles.
    Last edited by Ulzgoroth; 2007-03-22 at 11:41 PM.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Seattle, USA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Good people kill when their life, the lives of a loved one, or an innocent's(a person who they have no personal attachment to and to their knowledge has done no wrong) life is at stake.

    A neutral person kills when their life, or the lives of a loved one are at stake.

    Killing for any other reason is evil...simple.

    However, just because someone does something thats evil (such as killing someone who isn't a direct threat), doesn't neccesarly mean your evil. Alignment is a measure of how you usually act, not just one or two events.
    "Sometimes, we’re heroes. Sometimes, we shoot other people right in the face for money."

    -Shadowrun 4e, Runner's Companion

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ElfWarriorGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    @ Krellen- You prove my point in your own post. The SRD says that evil implies hurting oppressing, killing. Killing an evil being could be judged a good act.
    You then go further and add something that's not in the rule- unintellgent creatures get a pass because the killing is wanton. That's my point. It's not the act of killing it's the justification (or lack of justification). The actor must be wrong in his act of killing; merely killing is not wrong.

    I further disagree that the alignment descriptions are strict definitions of the alignments. They are helpful examples. You can create a play a CE character who never hurts, oppresses or kills anyone. He may just steal. He may want to do all those things, but is never succesful (thank God for the PCs). In either case, the characters disposition and predelicitions are toward chaos and evil, so that's his alignment.

    @ NemoUtopia- You say that Judge Death's insanity is proof of his evilness. Are you saying all insane people are evil or all evil people are insane? Either way I think just the opposite. His insanity proves he can't be evil (or good for that matter). He lacks the moral decisionmaking to be good or evil. He actions are not determined by a moral guide, but by instinct (like an animal).

    Without moral choice, there is no morality. A creature that cannot choose to do evil or good cannot be evil or good. It is merely a moral nullity. This flies in the face of our notion of both real and imaginary spiritual creatures, but morality is always about the choice.

    I think many of you are trying to deduce an alignment by comparing his actions to someone who chooses to do them (and therefore is morally culpable). I think that his actions most closely resemble what we would describe as lawful evil. He has a twisted but rational approach, he joined the judges to give him the authority to kill, he worked with others to establish the necropolis.

    @ Evilelitest- Your main point is that JD (and Barry) is evil because they kill for no reason. That's not true. They both have a reason, JD because he believes life is a capital crime and Barry because he enjoys it and values his joy over his victim's life. The problem is you disapprove with their reasons because you place a different value on life. It's not that they don't have a reason, it's only that their reasons aren't good enough for you.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    NemoUtopia's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    wouldn't YOU like to know
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Krellen View Post
    Chaos isn't just "random"; it's also a love of conflict, competition and change.

    While Judge Death fits some aspects of Neutral Evil, he's a blatant violation of others:

    Judge Death doesn't just sit idle after wiping out life; he immediately has to move on to another inhabited place to wipe it out. He actively searches for new ways to kill more people. He thrives on the destruction, fear, pain and suffering of his victims - so much so that he is driven ever onwards to kill. That drive is the Chaos; he is, in fact, very much like Demons. He would participate in the Blood War, because it would be a perfect way to end more life.
    I had considered this, and in the end ruled NE (again, IMO) for a few other reasons. The blood war is a conflict based on the conflict between law and chaos...which Judge Death doesn't care about in the slightest. He/it only cares about killing, and if placed on a Blood War battlefield would likely just destroy whatever was around him at the time...or even disregard the other fiends entirely. Judge Death cares about life...or rather, death...but specifically human death. Even if one argues that demons/devils are truly sentient in their own right as opposed to being a "split personality" manifestation of their home plane and its ideals (they are spawned and created, not born), JD is still very singular minded. Put another way: JD is too lawful and dead set (pun intended) to be chaotic, and too spontaneous and chaotic without a real code to be really lawful. While I can see arguments that would make him either lawful or chaotic, it's that same dichotomy that makes me think of neutrality on that axis.




    Quote Originally Posted by Desaril View Post
    @ NemoUtopia- You say that Judge Death's insanity is proof of his evilness. Are you saying all insane people are evil or all evil people are insane? Either way I think just the opposite. His insanity proves he can't be evil (or good for that matter). He lacks the moral decisionmaking to be good or evil. He actions are not determined by a moral guide, but by instinct (like an animal).

    Without moral choice, there is no morality. A creature that cannot choose to do evil or good cannot be evil or good. It is merely a moral nullity. This flies in the face of our notion of both real and imaginary spiritual creatures, but morality is always about the choice.

    I think many of you are trying to deduce an alignment by comparing his actions to someone who chooses to do them (and therefore is morally culpable). I think that his actions most closely resemble what we would describe as lawful evil. He has a twisted but rational approach, he joined the judges to give him the authority to kill, he worked with others to establish the necropolis.
    Actually, I never mentioned insanity as proof of evil, only that in Judge Death's case, they go hand in hand. Also, your insanity/good/evil argument reminds me of a defense lawyer trying to get the death sentance (man, that subject keeps coming up like the plauge [ok, somebody stop me, please, before we all drop de...)_)...(_(...deeply unconscious]) off the table for his sociopath client. In JD's case, the most correct term is "alien mindset", and alien in a form is defined by killing. Killing as a goal unto itself is evil. Still, let's assume he was an ordinary human being, albiet one who killed for death's own sake. That leaves us two options:
    1) JD is sane (in the legal but not what I would consider true sense of the word) and has made a choice to be evil and kill.
    2) JD's acts are the cause of clinical insanity (i.e. something that can be fixed with medication to re-balance brain chemistry or resolved by institutionalization).
    If option 1, he's evil and that's that. If 2, where does that leave you? A drunk is held responsible for their actions while drunk, as are drug users who commit atrocities while similarly influenced. So any person who chooses (while sane) to not take care of the situation / take medication is similarly responsible for their actions done as a consequence. The exception would be mental retardation (not the case here) or an outside force preventing JD from keeping the problem fixed even though he tried to do so...which means the other party is held responsible. Really, no matter how you argue it, you end up with "evil", and while the being itself might not be evil and not deserve the cessation of existence, its actions and effective non-fixed persona ARE, making it a moot point.
    Last edited by NemoUtopia; 2007-03-23 at 12:14 AM.
    Awesome avatar by potatocubed

    Without improvisation, magic is inherently limited

    Spoiler
    Show

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOOB View Post
    Good people kill when their life, the lives of a loved one, or an innocent's(a person who they have no personal attachment to and to their knowledge has done no wrong) life is at stake.

    A neutral person kills when their life, or the lives of a loved one are at stake.

    Killing for any other reason is evil...simple.
    The death sentence is widely applied in most D&D settings, as far as I know. And not considered evil.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Seattle, USA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
    The death sentence is widely applied in most D&D settings, as far as I know. And not considered evil.
    I'd contend that the death sentance is evil, as it's done simply out of convienance. If you have a criminal subdued to the point where you could execute them, then they are no longer a threat to your society. At that point all killing them gains you is the money that would have been spent taking care of them in prison.

    Executing someone is pretty evil, though once agian just because a country has capital punishment doesn't mean the countries government is evil, it could even still be good, but it still does commit evil acts.
    "Sometimes, we’re heroes. Sometimes, we shoot other people right in the face for money."

    -Shadowrun 4e, Runner's Companion

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ElfWarriorGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Putting aside the insanity argument, there seems to be a dispute about why JD kills. If he does it for the joy of killing and he values that joy over the lives of his victim, that's pretty evil by most standards.

    If instead he truly is trying to rid the world of crime and this is the only means to do so, isn't he pursuing a good end. According to Judeo-Christian beliefs God did it once with a flood and is gonna do it again. I'm not saying JD is God, but good for the goose...
    BTW, I'll argue about anything!

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SolithKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    There can be no one answer until what consitutes Law, Evil, Chaos, and Good is firmly defined by an official source, as opposed to the different, often contradictory statements WotC books make. Since there is no firm definition, our opinions on the alignment of Judge Death are just that - opinions. Nothing more and nothing less.

    Me? Frankly, I say Lawful Evil, since he only joined the Judges to be able to kill legally.

    EDIT: Actually, now that I think about it, this could be a fine example of a character shifting alignments over time. He started NE, became LE when he signed on with the Judges, and finally shifted to LN over time as he became obsessed with stopping crime over all else.
    Last edited by lumberofdabeast; 2007-03-23 at 12:19 AM.
    Proud member of the Latte fanclub. FREEDOM!
    Origami frying pan face licker of the Chaotic Conscience Fan Club!
    I am a Chaotic Good Gnome Wizard, Str 10, Dex 7, Con 11, Int 15, Wis 15, Cha 8.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    NemoUtopia's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    wouldn't YOU like to know
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment question: Judge Death and killing for the sake of killing alone

    Quote Originally Posted by Desaril View Post
    Putting aside the insanity argument, there seems to be a dispute about why JD kills. If he does it for the joy of killing and he values that joy over the lives of his victim, that's pretty evil by most standards.

    If instead he truly is trying to rid the world of crime and this is the only means to do so, isn't he pursuing a good end. According to Judeo-Christian beliefs God did it once with a flood and is gonna do it again. I'm not saying JD is God, but good for the goose...
    And your signature proves its truth (btw, no ill will, I just love debate as much as you do )...

    Let's say JD DOES kill to rid the world of crime. Assuming the Judeo-Christian belief that God flooded the Earth to rid if of wickedness, said deity still saved the righteous (Noah and family) and the innocent (animals). JD does not strive for either, and strives for total nihilism and cessation of life. Also, crime as JD (and indeed, the word itself) defines it is based on laws...not basic strictures, but legal codes. To rid the world of crime in that sense would be a strictly lawful goal, not a good one. To rid the world of evil or influences and things that cause suffering and harm would be a good goal...and JD would take any life, even the most pure and good and innocent, on the premise that it can (not has, or is fated to, but can) commit a crime...taken in its own context, this is what the Inevitables of Mechanus do, but in a proactive sense based on possibilities, not in a retroactive manner based on facts. Neither good, nor lawful, you're still boiled down to four alignments (N, CN, NE, CN), and JD exhibits a sadism and sole purpose that precludes N and CN potential.
    Last edited by NemoUtopia; 2007-03-23 at 12:24 AM.
    Awesome avatar by potatocubed

    Without improvisation, magic is inherently limited

    Spoiler
    Show

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •