Paladin just committed murder - what should happen next?

pemerton

Legend
The world view of the knights which forms the basis of the Paladin archetype was absolutely based on duty, sacrifice, and objective morality. Capturing that archetype in play is absolutely about objective morality.

<snip>

our goals as players and Dungeon Masters should not be to solve moral questions, only to play an exciting game where the story involves fantasy morality.
In my experience it is helpful to adopt certain approaches/conceits found in 4 colour comics, and other fantasy also - namely, to avoid presenting issues which show, to contemporary sensibilities, the absurdities of the objective morality of (historical) knights and (imaginary) paladins.

For instance, present the peasants as suffering, disease-ridden, down-trodden etc and the question of why the paladin is off fighting troglodytes rather than healing all these sick comes right to the fore. Just as we might wonder why Storm spends her time fighting Arcade rather than helping crops grow by controlling the weather.

The solution I tend to adopt is to avoid too many of those narrations of real-world issues that trouble the morals of many contemporary people; while also framing the fantasy opposition such that overcoming it is important to solving problems for the rest of the world - eg the way to stop blights on the crops isn't to help with fungicides and the breeding of resistant varieties, but rather to go to the Abyss and kill Juiblex. Etc.
 

5ekyu

Adventurer
In my experience it is helpful to adopt certain approaches/conceits found in 4 colour comics, and other fantasy also - namely, to avoid presenting issues which show, to contemporary sensibilities, the absurdities of the objective morality of (historical) knights and (imaginary) paladins.

For instance, present the peasants as suffering, disease-ridden, down-trodden etc and the question of why the paladin is off fighting troglodytes rather than healing all these sick comes right to the fore. Just as we might wonder why Storm spends her time fighting Arcade rather than helping crops grow by controlling the weather.

The solution I tend to adopt is to avoid too many of those narrations of real-world issues that trouble the morals of many contemporary people; while also framing the fantasy opposition such that overcoming it is important to solving problems for the rest of the world - eg the way to stop blights on the crops isn't to help with fungicides and the breeding of resistant varieties, but rather to go to the Abyss and kill Juiblex. Etc.
IMO a good example of this in practice was the Buffy series - monsters as metaphor for all the various dangers, sins and woes of high school and later college.

Meanwhile as an anecdote, in my last supers game, one player played a weather wizard who supported himself with a few NDA contracts with PGA, NASCAR, etc to guarantee them favorable weather for their bigger events each year. It was a shades of gray supers gsme - perhaps shades of green.
 

Wiseblood

Adventurer
If the dragon had tried a different tack how would the paladin respond?

Dragon: (Bluff) “ Leave this one in my care I will get him to safety.”

Paladin:?
 

PsyzhranV2

Explorer
If the dragon had tried a different tack how would the paladin respond?

Dragon: (Bluff) “ Leave this one in my care I will get him to safety.”

Paladin:?
Dragon rolls Charisma (Deception) against the Paladin's passive Insight (10+Wis, +prof if proficient). Or if the Paladin gets suspicious, they can initiate an active Insight vs Deception contest. If the dragon makes the check, then he comes off as honest. If he fails, Paladin knows something's up, and we're back at OP's scenario.
 
Wanted to add a final comment to the thread.

This is 5E this is not DnD or ADnD. This is the "balanced" edition where you don't need stupid rules like Paladin codes to "balance" what was an OP class. So the reality is that in 5E Paladin codes are fluff for the character. They should not be considered a straight jacket to be used by DMs who think not committing suicide makes one a MURDERER.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
Wanted to add a final comment to the thread.

This is 5E this is not DnD or ADnD. This is the "balanced" edition where you don't need stupid rules like Paladin codes to "balance" what was an OP class. So the reality is that in 5E Paladin codes are fluff for the character. They should not be considered a straight jacket to be used by DMs who think not committing suicide makes one a MURDERER.
I've not seen anyone claim the Paladin committed murder besides the opening post. We have debated whether he did wrong. Whether be broke his oath. Heck, I don't even think we touched on whether he should be deemed an accomplice to murder.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
In my experience it is helpful to adopt certain approaches/conceits found in 4 colour comics, and other fantasy also - namely, to avoid presenting issues which show, to contemporary sensibilities, the absurdities of the objective morality of (historical) knights and (imaginary) paladins.

For instance, present the peasants as suffering, disease-ridden, down-trodden etc and the question of why the paladin is off fighting troglodytes rather than healing all these sick comes right to the fore. Just as we might wonder why Storm spends her time fighting Arcade rather than helping crops grow by controlling the weather.

The solution I tend to adopt is to avoid too many of those narrations of real-world issues that trouble the morals of many contemporary people; while also framing the fantasy opposition such that overcoming it is important to solving problems for the rest of the world - eg the way to stop blights on the crops isn't to help with fungicides and the breeding of resistant varieties, but rather to go to the Abyss and kill Juiblex. Etc.
It's also important to know your players and whether they will find it fair that you put them in a position where their character's life is at risk for fulfilling his beliefs in a very extenuating circumstance.

Some players are perfectly fine with their character's life being at risk for their beliefs. Other will call foul.
 

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