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Author Topic: Alignment in SPAAAACE!  (Read 1787 times)

Nobby-W

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2020, 10:02:52 am »
Quote from: Jamfke;1127716
I'm working on a design for a sci-fi OSR game and I'm wondering if alignment rules are that necessary. I can see them being useful in fantasy games with deities and the like being an ever present factor for the characters, but sci-fi doesn't dip into that pond so much. However, with dark and light themes being a thing (à la Star Wars) I can see where it can come in handy for gauging a character's allegiances.

Do you guys/gals use alignment that often during a session?
I've never used alignment anywhere but D&D with one exception.  Although the Palladium system largely wasn't anything to write home about the alignment system from Palladium was a neat idea, a bit different from the gartner-ish Law/Chaos, Good/Evil of D&D.  I grafted that onto Rolemaster for a game at one point.  

Instead of the good/evil and law/chaos it has 7 basic personality types

Principled (essentially lawful good) - Boy scout types
Scrupulous (essentially chaotic good or neutral good) - Maverick with a heart of gold
Unprincipled (primarily self-serving) - Lovable rogue, e.g. Han Solo
Anarchist (self-serving) - Untrustworthy rogue, roughly equivalent to chaotic-neutral
Aberrant (honourable evil) - Likely violent and ruthless but honourable.
Miscreant (lawful evil) - Evil, manipulative, scheming, for example Littlefinger.
Diabolic (chaotic evil) - Violent psycho with little regard for consequences.

See here - https://imgur.com/gallery/DmKvb

Because it views alignment as more of a personality trait rather than some abstract good-vs-evil concept it could be used outside of sword-and-sorcery without looking too much like D&D-in-space.  I've never bothered with Alignments in sci-fi games but if you think it would add to the game something like the Palladium alignment system might work for you.
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Ghostmaker

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« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2020, 10:09:44 am »
I would suggest that alignment makes sense in games where those concepts -- order, chaos, good and evil -- are tangible, real forces in your cosmology and campaign world.

In games where the lines get blurry and they're moral and ethical questions, not something 'real', you can probably discard them in favor of some form of a reputation system.

RPGPundit

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #17 on: May 07, 2020, 04:56:48 pm »
I think in Star Adventurer, most Jedi and most Sith would be Lawful, probably.
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GeekyBugle

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« Reply #18 on: May 07, 2020, 07:19:52 pm »
Quote from: Jamfke;1127716
I'm working on a design for a sci-fi OSR game and I'm wondering if alignment rules are that necessary. I can see them being useful in fantasy games with deities and the like being an ever present factor for the characters, but sci-fi doesn't dip into that pond so much. However, with dark and light themes being a thing (à la Star Wars) I can see where it can come in handy for gauging a character's allegiances.

Do you guys/gals use alignment that often during a session?


Why not replace it with loyalties, and maybe motivation?

You're loyal to your country, world, cause, etc.
Why did you embark into adventuring? Riches, Revenge, Loyalty, Fear (to be captured by the Empire for instance).
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GeekyBugle

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #19 on: May 07, 2020, 07:21:12 pm »
Quote from: S'mon;1127924
Lawful Star Knights (Jedi) vs Chaotic Void Knights (Sith). It makes more sense in a Star Wars based universe than in most D&D fantasy!

Only if you buy into the Jedi propaganda :eek:
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danskmacabre

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2020, 07:43:43 pm »
I don't mind Alignment for Fantasy DnD, but don't use it in Space RPGs.

If there were a re-issue of say "Spell jammer" a sort of Scifi/Fantasy DnD RPG (for 5e), I'd use alignment though.

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #21 on: May 15, 2020, 11:51:50 pm »
It would depend on the setting. Obviously, in a star-wars style space-opera, ethical alignment is an important element of roleplay. In a game that's more hard sci fi it might be less important.
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Krugus

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2020, 01:44:45 pm »
The way we use Alignment at our table is its a tool for the GM for the NPC's views and how they react to the world around them.  Players pick what Alignment they feel their characters are most of the time so its just a simple POV guide line that can and will shift over time for some and not so much for others.    Just because a CE player decides to follow the laws while they are in town don't mean he's now LE.   He's just playing it smart.    A Freedom loving CG person can do evil things or lawful things if needed but their overall POV will be CG.  

I think people tend to have a strict shallow view on Good and Evil thus making Alignment's a Strict POV that you must toe the line or else! zealot mentality which its not.   Its just a RP tool mainly for the DM and the Players to use to assist in guiding them to have a base POV to start your character off with.   Nothing more, nothing less.

Pat

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« Reply #23 on: May 17, 2020, 12:37:58 pm »
Traveller-style space game? No. Star Wars? Maybe, though you'd probably want to use an explicit light/dark side system and some kind of dark force mechanic, instead of the nine-point axis. Alternatively, the d20 Modern allegiance system is a good way to create factions without a strict Us Good/Them Bad divide, and would be easy to adapt.
http://www.d20resources.com/modern.d20.srd/basics/allegiances.php

VisionStorm

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« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2020, 03:34:03 pm »
The thing about Light Side/Dark Side in Star Wars is that in the context of the setting there's kind of a tricky gray area that may tip even good people over to the dark side through temptation or even simple loss of temper. So its hard to tell exactly were the Light Side ends and the Dark Side begins (until its already too late...). The way that the old West End Games Star Wars RPG used to handle it was a good way, though, since doing "bad" things would get you Dark Side points, which could be spent to gain bonuses to your actions, but if you did, you'd start tipping over to the Dark Side. So it added an element of temptation, since giving into the Dark Side had its benefits, but it would start corrupting you, even if done for "good" reasons.

Altheus

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« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2020, 04:24:22 pm »
Quote from: VisionStorm;1130327
The thing about Light Side/Dark Side in Star Wars is that in the context of the setting there's kind of a tricky gray area that may tip even good people over to the dark side through temptation or even simple loss of temper. So its hard to tell exactly were the Light Side ends and the Dark Side begins (until its already too late...). The way that the old West End Games Star Wars RPG used to handle it was a good way, though, since doing "bad" things would get you Dark Side points, which could be spent to gain bonuses to your actions, but if you did, you'd start tipping over to the Dark Side. So it added an element of temptation, since giving into the Dark Side had its benefits, but it would start corrupting you, even if done for "good" reasons.

We're the Jedi, we're the good guys, don't mind the army of slave soldiers. *mystic gesture* You don't need to worry about them.

I don't think alignment serves much purpose in space.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2020, 04:26:28 pm by Altheus »

jeff37923

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Alignment in SPAAAACE!
« Reply #26 on: May 17, 2020, 05:00:21 pm »
Quote from: Jamfke;1127716
I'm working on a design for a sci-fi OSR game and I'm wondering if alignment rules are that necessary. I can see them being useful in fantasy games with deities and the like being an ever present factor for the characters, but sci-fi doesn't dip into that pond so much. However, with dark and light themes being a thing (à la Star Wars) I can see where it can come in handy for gauging a character's allegiances.

Do you guys/gals use alignment that often during a session?


If you need Alignment in a space opera game, then you should just go back to playing D&D.

BronzeDragon

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« Reply #27 on: May 18, 2020, 03:18:42 am »
Quote from: Jamfke;1127716
I'm working on a design for a sci-fi OSR game and I'm wondering if alignment rules are that necessary. I can see them being useful in fantasy games with deities and the like being an ever present factor for the characters, but sci-fi doesn't dip into that pond so much. However, with dark and light themes being a thing (à la Star Wars) I can see where it can come in handy for gauging a character's allegiances.

Do you guys/gals use alignment that often during a session?


The question you have to ask yourself is "Are Good and Evil real things in this universe?".

If Good and Evil are not just abstract concepts people use to rationalize actions taken by individuals or groups, but rather actual things, true things due to the presence of a creator or creators that set the rules, then alignment is not only appropriate, it's a requirement in my view.

If, on the other hand, Good and Evil are simply words, concepts created by mortals to describe situations they experience, then alignment is unnecessary.

As for alignment coming up during play, it certainly does in most D&D worlds, since I subscribe to the whole Planescape cosmology.
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VisionStorm

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« Reply #28 on: May 18, 2020, 10:21:37 am »
Quote from: jeff37923;1130343
If you need Alignment in a space opera game, then you should just go back to playing D&D.


Plot Twist: Alignment also sucks donkey balls in D&D! :eek:

Shasarak

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« Reply #29 on: May 18, 2020, 05:13:59 pm »
Quote from: VisionStorm;1130457
Plot Twist: Alignment also sucks donkey balls in D&D! :eek:

That reminds me of the old joke:

You dont come here for the hunting.
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