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Originally Posted by Abits
Just to be clear, does the concept of redemption doesn't exist in FR?


In the D&D multiverse gods exist but they are not omnipotent/omniscent. They are "just" superpowerful beings with sway over the souls of their dedicated followers after they die.

In D&D the whole universe is ballanced on the moral axis of Good vs Evil, Law vs Chaos and neutrality in between.
This means Neutral Good deities are usually big about forgiveness. Lawful Good deities could contemplate forgiveness but only after strenuous process of repentance and penance as defined by the law. Chaotic Good deities would forgive misdeeds or not depending on their personal choices/ideology (Chaotic Good is mostly about fighting istitutionalized evil without a great commitment to a code of laws, tradition and so on). Lawful Neutral deities would stress the importance of following the letter of the law while true Neutral deities would try to judge deeds without prejudice or moral inclinations of any kind. Chaotic Neutral deities just don't care. Lawful Evil gods are big on punishment, possibly capital, for very minor infractions unless the law gives you a way out (pay a huge fee only the rich could afford). Neutral Evil deities judge you based on what profits them the most and ignore/change the law as it suits them. Chaotic Evil deities just don't care they will torture/kill or make use of you based on a whim.

Edit: to answer your question more clearly. In D&D redemption depends on what deity you follow and how you position yourself on the cosmic moral axis that determines how the universe works. Being "redeemed" as a Sharran is way different from redeeming yourself as a follower of Selune for example.

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Originally Posted by Firesnakearies
Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Firesnakearies

I agree with you, the slate should not be wiped clean. I like redemption stories, but in order to be redeemed, a person has to earn it. They have to turn from their evil ways and actually do good in the world.

Just to have a better grasp of this... Of what "evil" actions she's supposed to be guilty of so far in the game, exactly?


I have no idea, maybe we'll find out. I mean, maybe she hasn't done much.


The Tieflings "she feels guilty" mind reading narrator says she has killed before and enjoyed it. It also says she has no idea what the feeling is (narrator call it guilt) and the Tielfing is the only time she feels it (but only if killed via the Goblins path, she doesn't appear to suffer guilt if you kill them for Khaga).

Going by the praises and tips she is giving the Priest of Loviathar, she has tortured people before and she's enjoying the scene a bit too much.

Post Raphael's conversation has her bring up how well versed she is in manipulation/torture and knowing people into it. You can ask her to be presented to her friends, her answer is a playful "maybe one day, but I wonder if you will survive the encounter".

Tadpole Dream conversations and her enjoying slaughtering people in them.

And now the classic Sharran tactics:
- her banters are mostly about gathering personal information. Sharrans gather information to manipulate people later. Sharran are wolf in sheep's clothing.
- Her post Raphael's conversation and putting doubts into people's mind. You only find out most of her evil inclinations if you follow more evil options and this thread is a result of people doubting she is evil...

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Originally Posted by Abits
Just to be clear, does the concept of redemption doesn't exist in FR?


On top of what Tulkash01 has said, evil gods tend to not like it when their worshippers abandon them. They usually send people to kill those ex-worshippers.

Shar is one of the nastiest deity when it comes to that, she even goes after worshippers who are only showing signs of weakening faith in her.

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Originally Posted by Tulkash01
Originally Posted by Abits
Just to be clear, does the concept of redemption doesn't exist in FR?


In the D&D multiverse gods exist but they are not omnipotent/omniscent. They are "just" superpowerful beings with sway over the souls of their dedicated followers after they die.

In D&D the whole universe is ballanced on the moral axis of Good vs Evil, Law vs Chaos and neutrality in between.
This means Neutral Good deities are usually big about forgiveness. Lawful Good deities could contemplate forgiveness but only after strenuous process of repentance and penance as defined by the law. Chaotic Good deities would forgive misdeeds or not depending on their personal choices/ideology (Chaotic Good is mostly about fighting istitutionalized evil without a great commitment to a code of laws, tradition and so on). Lawful Neutral deities would stress the importance of following the letter of the law while true Neutral deities would try to judge deeds without prejudice or moral inclinations of any kind. Chaotic Neutral deities just don't care. Lawful Evil gods are big on punishment, possibly capital, for very minor infractions unless the law gives you a way out (pay a huge fee only the rich could afford). Neutral Evil deities judge you based on what profits them the most and ignore/change the law as it suits them. Chaotic Evil deities just don't care they will torture/kill or make use of you based on a whim.

Edit: to answer your question more clearly. In D&D redemption depends on what deity you follow and how you position yourself on the cosmic moral axis that determines how the universe works. Being "redeemed" as a Sharran is way different from redeeming yourself as a follower of Selune for example.

I would generally agree with this.

To your earlier point, how would we, within a game, know/judge repent from "repent"? What if the game writers believe they have written the character in such a way that they have repented, but I as the player profoundly disagree. What then?

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Originally Posted by kanisatha

I would generally agree with this.

To your earlier point, how would we, within a game, know/judge repent from "repent"? What if the game writers believe they have written the character in such a way that they have repented, but I as the player profoundly disagree. What then?

Your only option is to engage with in-universe systems. There a lot of failings of the D&D alignments mixing with IRL morality. You can disagree only as much as your god belief allows you to which, as demonstrated, can vary wildly. This is assuming you want to disagree within the game. If you as an IRL player don't care then you really can only go with kill or ignore.

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Originally Posted by kanisatha

I would generally agree with this.

To your earlier point, how would we, within a game, know/judge repent from "repent"? What if the game writers believe they have written the character in such a way that they have repented, but I as the player profoundly disagree. What then?


From my experience with BG3 EA I think it's fair to say the game will provide us with several paths leading to different outcomes. For example I believe that with Shadowheart we will get a chance to turn her away from Shar (which could be interpreted as a "redemption" of sorts but a Sharran would simply call this "betrayal") OR to sabotage her secret mission causing her to become hostile towards us OR to help her with her evil mission confirming her as a Sharran making her fully and completely evil.

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Originally Posted by SacredWitness
Your only option is to engage with in-universe systems. There a lot of failings of the D&D alignments mixing with IRL morality. You can disagree only as much as your god belief allows you to which, as demonstrated, can vary wildly. This is assuming you want to disagree within the game. If you as an IRL player don't care then you really can only go with kill or ignore.

I think this is where I have a profound issue, because the game is approaching the idea of redemption from a very specific IRL cultural/religious perspective. But since I don't come from that particular religious tradition, I am having great difficulty accepting it.
Originally Posted by Tulkash01
From my experience with BG3 EA I think it's fair to say the game will provide us with several paths leading to different outcomes. For example I believe that with Shadowheart we will get a chance to turn her away from Shar (which could be interpreted as a "redemption" of sorts but a Sharran would simply call this "betrayal") OR to sabotage her secret mission causing her to become hostile towards us OR to help her with her evil mission confirming her as a Sharran making her fully and completely evil.

Okay, but for me this is insufficient (a weakness of the game's writing), because a more reasonable path (for me) would be turning SH away from Shar but then making her truly pay for any and all evil she's done (i.e. atonement without any reward for the atonement).

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Originally Posted by Abits
Just to be clear, does the concept of redemption doesn't exist in FR?


It does and I think @Tulkash1 has got it down pretty well. Minor disagreement on neutral but neutral has always been the hardest to pin down smile

In first edition D&D changing gods came with penalty of one experience level -- it was never clear if this was from the former god or some AO like god. Alignment change was free unless it was involuntary then it came an experience point cost. (say your DM decided that your decision to join the Zents is not Lawful Good). You also lost your 'alignment language' which no longer exists.

In the realms Elistraee concerns herself with the redemption of the drow and the church has secret enclaves dedicated to converting Lolth's faithful.

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Oh and in the Viconia romance she dies when Lolth causes a spider figurine to come to life and poison her. So yes, expect some retribution.

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Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by SacredWitness
Your only option is to engage with in-universe systems. There a lot of failings of the D&D alignments mixing with IRL morality. You can disagree only as much as your god belief allows you to which, as demonstrated, can vary wildly. This is assuming you want to disagree within the game. If you as an IRL player don't care then you really can only go with kill or ignore.

I think this is where I have a profound issue, because the game is approaching the idea of redemption from a very specific IRL cultural/religious perspective. But since I don't come from that particular religious tradition, I am having great difficulty accepting it.


The game is?

So far I have only seen players approach redemption that way and speculating the game will allow for it. That is when they don't think she will discover she was a Selûnite all along and switch belief system just like that. That's not a redemption arc, it's just a toggle to make the character good or evil based on the player's whim.

The only way I see Shadowheart redeemed is after years of (conversion) therapy...and at that point, is it really therapy or good people brainwashing her to be good?

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Originally Posted by kanisatha

Okay, but for me this is insufficient (a weakness of the game's writing), because a more reasonable path (for me) would be turning SH away from Shar but then making her truly pay for any and all evil she's done (i.e. atonement without any reward for the atonement).


I can't say for sure if the game will do the things you'd like it to do. What I can tell you is that redemption in the religious mindset you think the game assumes (and I'm not so sure that's the case but we'll see) usually is a reward onto itself AND more often than not it implies personal sacrifice not some form of material reward. Take the Lord of the Rings (a book that certainly shares the mindset you are talking about) as an example. At a certain point one character realizes he did wrong and redeems himself by allowing his companions to escape while he stays behind and protects their retreat. He did redeem himself in the end but he paid the price of redemption by dying.

That may very well be the case with redeeming Shadowheart (although I'm not sure modern players would like that outcome...) also keep in mind evil gods in D&D do not like when their faithful leave them and often try to make an example out of them.

Fun fact:

As Killer Rabbit says in BG2:Throne of Bhaal you get the chance to redeem Viconia, an evil NPC companion, drow cleric of Shar changing her allignment from evil to neutral. If you do so and complete the game, a few years later Viconia is killed by agents of Lolth, the evil drow goddess of spiders she was a former priest of before leving her worship for Shar's. Given the similarities between Shadowheart and Viconia (ok, Viconia is more evil and way hotter...) I don't think it would be a stretch for SH to get killed if she changes her allignment

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Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for


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Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for


True but she's got a Githyanki's weapon and she needs to deliver it into Baldur's Gate... doesn't that sound a bit ominous to you at all?

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Originally Posted by Tulkash01
Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for


True but she's got a Githyanki's weapon and she needs to deliver it into Baldur's Gate... doesn't that sound a bit ominous to you at all?

It's not like she stole something from a hippie temple... It's the gith they are pretty bad themselves. More than that I don't know, but neither anyone who isn't a Larian's employee


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Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now.


Just so you know, the initiation to join the clergy of Shar is to murder people they assign to you.

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Originally Posted by kanisatha

LOL, yeah it amazes me to see how far some people (not everyone, mind) will spin things out of some desperate need to have SH be not evil and/or redeemable. And I can't imagine it doesn't have at least a little to do with her being portrayed as attractive and "lovey dovey." wink


Right? She is a zealot, a terrorist, a liar, a manipulator, logically if you are not a worshiper of Shar yourself at the very least you would be wise to stay the hell away from her, as she cannot be trusted in any way shape of form, at most you would slit her throat on the spot... But she is hot! So yay romance!

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Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for

Yes this is true. You, and also @azarhal and @Tulkash01 are all correct in that we don't know a lot of what's all actually there in the game at this point.

Also @Tulkash01, when I say reward I definitely do not mean material reward. I mean some sort of abstract reward, for example society applauding and giving you credit for having abandoned your evil past and become good now. One should not get any credit or be celebrated for doing penance for one's past wrongs. And I definitely agree with the Lord of the Rings example you give; that's *exactly* how I see penance and redemption happening for anyone who's committed capital crimes.

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Originally Posted by Abits
Originally Posted by Tulkash01
Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for


True but she's got a Githyanki's weapon and she needs to deliver it into Baldur's Gate... doesn't that sound a bit ominous to you at all?

It's not like she stole something from a hippie temple... It's the gith they are pretty bad themselves. More than that I don't know, but neither anyone who isn't a Larian's employee


That wasn't my point. My point is:"What do Sharrans need a Githyanki weapon for in Baldur's Gate?"

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Originally Posted by kanisatha
Originally Posted by Abits
Just pointing out that any "evil" that shadowheart commited is pure speculation right now. The only thing we know for sure she did was stealing the gith artifact, and we don't even know for sure what this artifact is. Sure she is Shar worshiper, but we have no idea what service (if at all) she provided her goddess.

The talk about atonement is somewhat premature if we don't even know what she needs to atone for


Also @Tulkash01, when I say reward I definitely do not mean material reward. I mean some sort of abstract reward, for example society applauding and giving you credit for having abandoned your evil past and become good now. One should not get any credit or be celebrated for doing penance for one's past wrongs. And I definitely agree with the Lord of the Rings example you give; that's *exactly* how I see penance and redemption happening for anyone who's committed capital crimes.


There's very little chance of that I think. narratively speaking redemption arcs are "end game" stuff. They happen when the game is nearing its end, unless there is a perfect ending where charname and companions win and save the day you can be sure they won't get all the credit they deserve for their success. If Shadowheart gets credit it would be because she helped defeat the conspiracy of the "Absolute" threatening the Sword Coast not because she had a crisis of faith and changed the goddess she worships.

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Does one have to commit evil "acts" in order to be evil? Can one merely be, philosophically, emotionally, intellectually evil? Can one be evil due to their intentions and worldview, even in the absence of technically doing any evil "deeds"? Or is one automatically good, regardless of the state of their heart and mind, regardless of the thoughts they have, regardless of what they desire and how they consider or ignore the lives and needs of others, UNTIL the very moment in which they actually do something "bad"?

How many of these evil acts does it take for someone to BE evil? How evil does the act have to be? If I steal someone's wallet, am I now evil? If I kill one person in the heat of passion during a drunken rage, am I now evil?

Can I seethe with hatred of others and plot horrendous atrocities in the secret privacy of my own mind, but not ever technically do anything, and still be considered "good"?

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