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General The child stealing food to survive scenario, for alignment

Possibly. But the portrayal of the Emerald Enclave from the Vilhon Reach supplement comes to mind, although they were druids and its a little of a different case, but I that was my mindset when I made that comment.
Ditto Mordenkainen and the Circle of Eight in Greyhawk; their whole shctick is maintain the balance.

But they're exceptions to the rule though. Generally speaking True Neutral people don't care strongly about good, evil, law or chaos, rather than caring deeply about neutrality.

Think of it as a person who does not care what team wins a sporting competition on one hand (not caring Neutrality) as opposed to a person who is dedicated to ensuring every team wins at least once, or sabotaging the competition so no team can ever win (Mordenkainen and the EE Druids).
 

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Ditto Mordenkainen and the Circle of Eight in Greyhawk; their whole shctick is maintain the balance.

But they're exceptions to the rule though. Generally speaking True Neutral people don't care strongly about good, evil, law or chaos, rather than caring deeply about neutrality.

Think of it as a person who does not care what team wins a sporting competition on one hand (not caring Neutrality) as opposed to a person who is dedicated to ensuring every team wins at least once, or sabotaging the competition so no team can ever win (Mordenkainen and the EE Druids).
Agree. Think this pertains more when there is a group of like minded TN individuals who get together behind a cause for neutrality rather than the individual. I have a player who always plays TN just so he can amble through the campaign for his gain.
 

DnD Warlord

Explorer
It's fun watching simualtionists and gamiest talk past each other through this thread:

Simulationist A: "in the real world, hitting someone with a hammer could cause permanent harm, therefore the act is evil"
Gamist A: "by the rules, it was impossible to hurt the kid with a hammer, therefore the act is morally neutral"

Simulationist B: "in the real world, falling off a cliff will kill you, so people wouldn't just do that in the game world"
Gamist B: "by the rules, you cannot die from falling off the cliff, so why would a character not do that?"

So long as everyone in your group is OK -- or at least understands -- the style of play you are playing, and so long as you are consistent in that style, either answer is right.
I am reminded of many years ago when someone on here told a story of her high teens level knight with tons of con stripping naked and diving into a volcano..."swim/sinking" getting an artafact from the bottom then clawingthere way out...continuing for 3 rounds to take damage...then still having double digit hp (bearly) left...because the good aligned party didnt want to deal with the red dragon the dm wanted them to to get it... then asking for healing.

Ut was an awesome thread I wish I still had my old acct to look for it... but it was back in 3.5
 

Agree. Think this pertains more when there is a group of like minded TN individuals who get together behind a cause for neutrality rather than the individual. I have a player who always plays TN just so he can amble through the campaign for his gain.
My suggestion is to reward other players at the table who have bothered to have causes, backstories and so forth with NPCs they have written into their backstory coming to help them out at times, churches they are aligned with doing the same, and rewarding players that do good, and punishing players that do bad (Karma).

Also aware inspiration to the same PCs liberally.

He only plays a faceless neutral gray man to prevent a DM from punishing him (making it harder to get stuff). He's likely had DMs lead him around by the nose by his alignment before, or had NPC's he has befrended always be used against him.

Make being a neutral gray man not conducive to his goal of getting stuff, and his play style will change accordingly.
 

DnD Warlord

Explorer
My suggestion is to reward other players at the table who have bothered to have causes, backstories and so forth with NPCs they have written into their backstory coming to help them out at times, churches they are aligned with doing the same, and rewarding players that do good, and punishing players that do bad (Karma).

Also aware inspiration to the same PCs liberally.

He only plays a faceless neutral gray man to prevent a DM from punishing him (making it harder to get stuff). He's likely had DMs lead him around by the nose by his alignment before, or had NPC's he has befrended always be used against him.

Make being a neutral gray man not conducive to his goal of getting stuff, and his play style will change accordingly.
This is also why power gamers need to learn to game the DM as much as the system...
Hey, if DM a and DM b both interpret thing diffrently and run diffrent style of games, your system mastery only gets you so far.
 

He only plays a faceless neutral gray man to prevent a DM from punishing him
As others have pointed out a TN character may just not care too much about the greater world going on around them, he plays his characters (mostly fighter) as such and generally goes by his whims and the direction the adventure or campaign is going and reaps the rewards or takes the punishment for his actions. I think maybe saying he is out for own gain was a poor choice of words on my part. His allegiance usually lies to himself and the party, leading the group in the general direction of the game from adventure to adventure. He actually will pick a few features for his character and stick with them throughout the campaign and play TN well, hence thats why he chooses to play that alignment. Its the alignment hes most comfortable playing and as hes been a player in our group on and off for 20+ years depending on RL circumstances it suits us well.

Hilariously this is a guy who once used a ring of dijinni summoning for the first wish, some "Elven Red Bud"...DM is that all master...PC, YES. PC, Crap need a pipe, second wish, summons the Dijinni again for a pipe...DM is that all master...PC, YES. PC, Crap need matches.... third wish, summons Dijinni again to get said matches...think you get the point, after a failed saving throw his WIS and INT were impaired for 8 hours.
 

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