Please stop metagaming god alignments / basing good evil on deities alone

  • We had this discussion on Discord, so I will bring it here. To worship an evil deity, or pray to them, does not make you evil. Period. All gods have a place in the world, and in the Forgotten Realms, few have a patron deity. If you want to read some more, there is a lovely discussion on the subject on the Candlekeep forum, here

    IMO, it is beginning to feel, as if Detect Evil V2, where, instead of judging actions, allowing evil folk to exist until they do something evil, we use "Detect alignment based on deity". It is ONLY NWN, that forces non divine classes to choose ONE patron. Usually, most non divine servants will have several gods they worship, based on several aspects in life (Farmer will worship Chauntea, Talos to make it rain / NOT destroy his crops with storms, Talona to not make his crops go bad, Lathander in the summer, Auril in the winter, Shar when it is dark, and Waukeen whenever he goes to the market to sell his grain.) The deity that gets the soul when he dies, is the deity who sends a divine servant to meet him in the fugue first.

    The way we are treating religion on CoA, is that EVERYONE is a sworn sword of the church of their PATRON, and that all other religions are pointless (unless we are quest buds with a cleric).

    Not all who worship Bane are evil, not all who go to the sharran shrine to pray are evil. It is fine that YOUR character is a very devoted servant of a god, even if he is not a divine spellcaster. But metagaming the alignment of someone based on their god, is bad IMO. Good, Evil, Law and Chaos are fixed aspects of the setting, yes. But knowing the ENTIRE Pantheon, their specific alignments vs yours, and thus judging the alignment of someone who holds a patron, is a big no no IMO.

  • As a person who absolutely adores playing fanatics or heretical versions of faith - 100% this.

    Common folk pray to any and all for different reasons in their life - and hey even if someone has an EVUL god as their patron, they might have a different viewing of the faith than what you can pick up on the Forgotten Realms wiki.

  • My PC pays homage to Kozah/Talos all the time, fears the evil Shaundakul, and has kneeled before the Alter of Bane. Also, At'ar is EVIL AS HELL, didn't you guys know that?

  • Admin [DM]

    I agree, I would love things to be a little more greyzoned. It is a shame FR made things so damn black and white when it really isnt!

  • I agree with O-louth.

    I'm not sure why this came up on Discord though. Personally, I haven't seen any metagaming in terms of alignment.

    When I was playing my Banite a lot of good aligned people worshipped Bane just due to my character's lawful actions. There was one point a person who worshipped Torm thanked Bane too.

  • I mostly agree.

    That being said if you are a cleric of an evil god people will probably think you are evil

  • Remember, there is a difference between praying to a god, and worshipping a god.

  • Prayer is a form of worship.

  • Uh, is there a whole lot of chaotic good worshippers of bane or chaotic evil barbarians of tyr?

    For gods like malar or say sune, i dont assume an alignement but it seems totally ic to assume some stuff based on certain gods that characters worship.

  • Admin [DM]

    You can be CG and have Bane as deity, just like you can be LE and have Tyche as deity. As long as you aren't a cleric it don't really matter.

  • You can also be a dwarf vegetarian bowman who refuse alcohol and dislike hurting goblins but its just rare and weird isnt it?

    Id imagine the vast majority of bhaal worshippers were evil and that there is extremely few lawful evil adventurers of akadi?

    I really dont see this as metagaming but as a legitimate proven stereotypes if such things exist?

  • I'm with Tempest...

    I don't see the big deal here. It's not metagaming to me, I mean what am i going to do? Make a bulletin to say someone is evil? So what?

  • Storyteller [DM]

    The realms are polytheistic and people should keep that in mind. 99% of people are true neutral, and follow Chauntea. Seriously, do NOT piss that goddess off!

  • Yes, but if someone is openly wearing a single holy symbol, that tells you a lot about their beliefs. The dogma of evil gods are evil.

  • As a worshipper of an evil god, both in game and in real life, I see no problems with people assuming that I am evil. Both in game and in real life.

  • What I meant by "prayer is not the same as worship" is that, just because you may say praise bane or praise torm, in no way does that make you good or bad. A good person prays to banda if they grief over a death of a loved one. An evil man being framed would pray to tyr to defend him in court. Simply praying to a god for their portfolio doesn't have any bareing on your alignment.

    That said, actually worshipping a god is different. Worship involves agreeing with that specifics gods outlooks and living by them. It means incorporating their beliefs into your everyday lives. That said, people are open to interpret your morality simply based on your speech, the same way people automatically draw conclusions if you call yourself a mormon or a satinist.

  • Who uses discord? IRC is where it's at !


    This is probably the 100th time I'm addressing this.

    You can pray to Cyric that the lie you told is believed. Doesn't necessarily make you evil.

    That does NOT mean, however, I'm going to let a guy with a jawless skull on a purple sunburst tattoo on his forehead who says he is a staunch devotee of the god of MURDER date my sister. Even if he's a Lawful good teenager who is just trying to be all cool to impress chicks.

    It's perfectly fine to "metagame" (if you can even call it that) what major pantheon dogmas area. They are MAJOR, which means everyone's heard of them at least.

    A God of Nazis who advocates that you fear only HIM and encourages you to ruthlessly crush people under your bootheel? Yeah, I don't see a Chaotic Good guy WILLINGLY worshiping a deity that is the exact OPPOSITE of what his nature is. He may pay lip service out of fear, but he is not a true worshiper in his heart for a dogma that is directly opposite to his nature. If I hear someone praying to Bane, I'm going to look twice at him, regardless of his circumstances.

    Prejudice exists, like polytheism does. I grew up in a major, real life polytheistic religion, and I promise you, if I see someone having an idol to an "evil" god with the exclusion of all others in their house (though the religion doesn't really have an "evil" god per say, it has some edge cases) I'm going to be a little uncomfortable going into their house alone. Despite the fact they are probably harmless, and in this day and age.

    Now if you hear Velsharoon and say "OMG necromancer" then I do tend to giggle. Because demigods have less than a thousand followers, IN THE WHOLE WORLD. This means yes, most people won't even know this god EXISTS. Their portfolios are so narrow, that there's probably little reason to pray to them ever as most people will never need what they offer.

  • To offer context to the discussion that started this- it was an argument whether or not a Good character has a justified case"in name of goodness" to gank another player because said players character openly declared themselves to be a follower of an evil deity like Velsharoon.

    If they have no proof that the evil dude is killing babies, it's certainly not a good action to kill him because you -think- this follower of Velsharoon (who you have never seen commit an evil act) could go kill babies tomorrow because he said "I'm going to play in the orphanage tomorrow."

  • Precisely. The point is not that you should not be SERIOUSLY distrusting of a cleric of Bane. Any Cormyran would think that fellow was up to no good, most likely.

    The point is, that it is not "ganking evidence", that a person took part of a sermon, where a priest of Shar counseled the grieving during a war. Would you keep an eye on him? SURE. But, it would be nice to see a bit more leeway. If someone is helping Lord Mertoi sacrifice kittens on the altar in Easthaven, yeah, that guy is most likely pretty evil. If someone walking around in the holy vestments of Bane, and declaring themselves the Holy Warrior of Bane, yeah, thats legit.

    It goes the other way around too. The evil crime lord, will likely participate in a sermon of Sune, because he wants his whores to look pretty, or he wants his wife not to grow old and ugly. Does not make him good.

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