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Originally Posted by Natureboy
Tieflings in earlier versions of D&D were depicted as trending towards evil and reveling in destruction (like a certain bard in BG2). This was attributed to their fiendish ancestry, and their inability to resist (or willingness to follow) their innate evil predispositions. Their more recent depiction as occupational thieves and organized criminals is a "politically correct" revision of them as victims of non Tiefling prejudice, which forces them to live in the high crime areas of Humanoid cities, corrupted by non Tiefling criminal influence. Larian's writers have promoted them to "noble outcasts" and oh so fashionable victims. As part of this overhaul, they relentlessly smear Druids of all "races" and ethnicities except Arron and Halsin, because the Druids, too, are supposedly victimizing the noble and suffering Tieflings.

I would disagree on the tiefling bard. Yes, he had destructive and self-destructive tendencies but he was no evil and not geared towards enjoying causing pain and etc. Actually, he was pretty fragile soul, if I recall correctly.

I can not talk about other editions of D&D but in other systems (namely the Pathfinder which is based on 3.5) they are also not inherently evil. Meaning you can not really blame 5e for not being overly harsh for one of the more interesting races to play. wink

On the druids: you have a choice there. My guess is that when the full game is released you will have the option to slaughter every single tiefling regardless of gender and age. Talking with the druids shows they are split between helping the refugees and keeping the intruders of the grove's peace away. Unless Kagha has some kind of a change of heart, there is no hope for the tieflings under her rule. I would say the fault is mostly with her and she is the one who is pretty negatively portrayed. Halsin on the other hand is one of the most likeable characters.

Originally Posted by Natureboy
THAT IS why Tiefling children are unkillable. Larian's writers want you to like and support Tieflings, and hate and kill their enemies. They likely have an extended storyline coming up involving Tieflings that continues after the player reaches Baldur's Gate. The discussions I've seen on the internet don't even mention that the Tiefs have made enemies of the Druids who saved them from slaughter by goblinoids and humanoids by stealing compulsively and repeatedly from their saviors.

Nothing of what I have seen in the game supports the fact that Larian has a pet you can not touch (except for the talking skeleton but he likely has excellent lore reasons not to be killable; and he is very helpful). It is a bug without doubt.

Killing the druids is entirely optional. A more ruthless character will do it. However, it is clear not all the druids are bad so it is an alignment choice (good vs. neturalish or evil).

Originally Posted by Natureboy
Goblins, though given more dept and complexity in BG3 than in earlier D&D based CRPGs, are still ugly, filthy, irredeemably evil subjects for mass killing to keep their rapidly multiplying hordes from increasing out of control. This is the first CRPG I've player that actually includes (very cute but still maliciously evil) Goblin children, who are nevertheless remarkably scarce in the camp and the Shattered Sanctum relative to the supposedly rodentlike fecundity of their elders.

Well, they are evil judged by their actions (plunder, cruelty). Whether all of their members are irredeemable is beyond the scope of the game. You are under no obligation to slaughter every single goblin, you simply need to remove their leaders. You are forced to kill (some of) the goblin children, though. If you go against the tieflings, a similar fate expects the tiefling children. It is a cruel world. And I do not mind darker fantasy settings. Most of the players do not, either


Originally Posted by Natureboy
I'm also a hobbyist non venomous snake keeper who coexists with wild American Black Bears, Canadian Lynx, Bobcats, and Coywolves, and other potentially dangerous wildlife, none of which have any remaining equivalents in the wild in Larian's Germany because rhey were systematically exterminated centuries ago. This means that their writers' perspective on 'real world' Wolves, bears, etc is based on what they see safely confined in zoos or in entertainment mefia, NOT on their wild counterparts! Vipers do exist in Germany, in the fotm of the fairly rare Adder (Viper berus).

"Reality" is a product of surroundings based experience, and subjective perception!

The seat of Larian is Belgium, which to my knowledge is not great in biodiversity, sadly. But that does not mean it's bad to have friendly beasts. But I mean... I do not think we should be that strict towards wildlife portrayal. No viper would kill a child in seconds. There are no owlbears and etc. and animals do not talk in our world. Personal opinion, of course.

A final note: supporting the goblins does lead to the slaughter of both the tieflings and the druids. Goblins enjoy the process, no doubt but they only succeed because of their leaders.

Last edited by Scales & Fangs; 07/01/22 05:51 PM.
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Are there actually goblin children in the game? I had not seen any.

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There are 3 goblin children infront of Helsin cage in Selune temple and they are throwing rocks on him as he is in bear form

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Also there are another childern outside, kicking some corpse.
Probably another one of Aradin group ...

When you reach Crusher, just head left through the hole in the wall.


In the words of the senior NCO instructor at cadet battalion:
“If you ain’t cheating you ain’t trying. And if you got caught you didn’t try hard enough!”
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Halsin in his bear form is being teased by very cute but malicious Goblin children (named "One", "Two", and "Three"). You are not forced to kill them to rescue Halsin; in the latest version, at least, you can simply tell them to leave before you free Halsin (which conveniently opens the Worg cages so the player can and must engage in some killing).

A number of the Goblins appear to be adolescents, but given that Goblins are supposed to multiply like flies, actual Goblin children are oddly scarce even in this game.

Creepy, vaguely sinister children are a recurring trope in BG3; our Intellect Devourer companion, "Us" communicates with and thinks with the sweet voice of an innocent child. If you played the present form of the Mol subplot, you.would hear those Tief child thieves suddenly become sinister. They (very slowly) threaten you in a malevolent manner if you repeatedly try to kill them, and whether you turn on them or not, brag about going on a theft spree when they reach Baldur's Gate. Unlike the in your face depiction of the Druids, you won't encounter this unless you find and rescue Mino from the Harpies and visit the Tiefling hideout.

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First, thanks for taking the time to read and THINK about some (not all) of my "walls of text".

Tieflings are explicitly described in the D&D 3 versions of the Monster Manual as predisposed towards evil because of their fiendish heritage, which is not the sane as depicting them as flat out evil like Lolth Sworn Drow. Haer'Dalis describes the destruction and razing of Saradush to an increasingly horrified Aerie as "a marvel to behold indeed. 'T would be rare to find something to compare even on the planes... I am a Doomguard, my dove. The forces of entropy seek to destroy all of the universe, and it is our place to hasten the process whenever we can,... and marvel at its' effect." Earlier, he in reference to CHARNAME's transformation into the Slayer comments: "I find myself unable to tear my eyes away. In the Doomguard, we appreciate the forces of entropy that bring destruction in their wake... and with each passing day, I see a personification of that force taking shape before me." A verbatim quote from BHAERD25, his banter file from Throne of Bhaal. Unless you played BG2 ToB with both Aerie and Haer'Dalis in your party, and a brief romance developed between the two, and you didn't have an ongoing romance with Aerie, you would never see this side of that Tiefling bard. It promptly ends their romance!

My bad about Larian's location in Ghent. I'm actually half Belgian (Wallonian) by ancestry. NO Western European nation, even in prehistorical times even approached the extraordinary biodiversity of present day SE Asia, South and Central America, and even subtropical and most of temperate East Asia today, and roughly half of Western Europe's biodiversity has been lost since industrialization. Belgian consistently rated at the very bottom of measures of environmental safeguards and biodiversity among EU prior to the admission of former Soviet Bloc nations such as Poland and Lithuania.

I referred to Kagha as a "stereotypical misanthropic tree hugger", because they really exist in great numbers, and they have and continue to use conservation as a neocolonial weapon against demonized "other"people. Those who are unwilling to tolerate the ugly realities of bears, Wolves, etc as destroyers of crops and livestock are often quite willing to overlook the impact of Tigers, Lions, African Wild Dogs, Dholes, and Asian and African Elephants on the livelihoods and very lives of the Human inhabitants of other nations. PART of that process is the depiction of these animals in anthropomorphic, sentimentalized, and sugar coated and even romanticized ways.

I have NO problems with anthropomorphic animals in fantasy per se, and loved Okku, the very unrealistic magical talking male bear in NWN2. Many others did not. What I criticized in this game were the use of an anthropomorphic viper, an animal we are INNATELY predisposed to fear and hate (vipers kill, maim, cripple, and permanently disfigure thousands of people worldwide annually, and people in less developed nations suffer the most) and which as a consequence has been linked with Original Sin in Abrahamic religions, as a plot device to further incite us against a Druid who is already a one dimensional cliche collection plot device.

There is a huge difference between manipulation of players and forcing them to do things. David Gaider tried to force us to take Imoen (a thieving, lazy, vapid, dim witted, underachieving slacker) with us in Spellhold by turning our party against us. He tried to manipulate us into killing Zathrian and effecting regime change among the Dalish, or gleefully engaging in genocide, with his (angry white male) Werewolves, ham fisted sob story about the Dalish victim of lycanthropy, and his truly bizarre "Lady of the Forest" (a display of his contempt for straight males, like boorish philistine belching Ogrim), and even branded Dalish supporters who killed Witherfang and the 'weres as "Poachers" in the achievements. He also refused to develop a "comrades in arms" ending for the fight between Zathrian and Witherfang for a Dalish Warden. But he did not force us to support the Shemlen Werewolves!

I told Zevlor that I would escort him and his people to safety, which made him and Tilsis turn hostile, so I killed both. I was not give the possibility of explaining that I was risking my own life to escort them to Baldur's Gate, but it's still EA! Kagha grinned makuciously whrn informed of Zevlor's death, but that was that, and after I defeated (killed) Gut, Minthara, and Raghslin, Asharak briefly referred to Zevlor's "passing", then announced forthcoming festivities, as if nothing had happened to Zevlor. Earlier, I was railroaded (FORCED) into fighting the Druids, when I slept at camp, then returned to the Grove; a cutscene featurin Gnomish Druid Halah started and all of the Druids except Rath turned hostile. Likewise, if I put Arabella's parents out of their misery after Teela killed their darling thief, the Druids guarding the Sacred Grove and their bear turned hostile. If I killed Tiefs in the hollow, Arron (?) immediately tried to arrest my Tav.

I was able to kill Asharek, then talk my way out of arrest, leaving his bloody corpse while Tiefling trainees worked alongside with Wyll as if nothing had happened! I NEVER claimed that Larian's writers prevent the player from killing adult Tieflings, as I had killed over a dozen before putting up my first post on this thread. What I affirmed was the FIRST and starting comment by Twinkle Toes; Larian lets you kill Goblin children but Tiefling children are unkillable.

I explained in painstaking detail how Larian's writers MANIPULATE AND RAILROAD, not FORCE, players to side with EITHER the Tieflings or the Goblins (and the Goblins leg spreader ally Minthara) against the Druids. Apparently your reading overlooked this! As for "darker fantasy", it's very much a feature of French and Gallic children's tales as compared to their Anglo equivalents, as my Wallonian mother explained to me during my childhood. Within limits, I like it, too. What I hate is being manipulated into choices that in a real world are antisocial, decadent, and ultimately self destructive.

Oh, no Druid would tolerate a Sharran cleric, because enclosing Toril in shadow would kill all photosynthetic plants and the ecosystems that depend on them! Fantasy has its' limits; all of Toril's higher vascular plants have leaves and chlorophyll for a reason! Are the "Leaflord" and the "Great Oak" mere euphemisms?

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Originally Posted by Natureboy
I have NO problems with anthropomorphic animals in fantasy per se, and loved Okku, the very unrealistic magical talking male bear in NWN2. Many others did not. What I criticized in this game were the use of an anthropomorphic viper, an animal we are INNATELY predisposed to fear and hate (vipers kill, maim, cripple, and permanently disfigure thousands of people worldwide annually, and people in less developed nations suffer the most) and which as a consequence has been linked with Original Sin in Abrahamic religions, as a plot device to further incite us against a Druid who is already a one dimensional cliche collection plot device.

Well, while I get it's not the point, the snake is one of the most reasonable characters in that room (if the main character is a druid from what I have seen)

Originally Posted by Natureboy
There is a huge difference between manipulation of players and forcing them to do things. David Gaider tried to force us to take Imoen (a thieving, lazy, vapid, dim witted, underachieving slacker) with us in Spellhold by turning our party against us. He tried to manipulate us into killing Zathrian and effecting regime change among the Dalish, or gleefully engaging in genocide, with his (angry white male) Werewolves, ham fisted sob story about the Dalish victim of lycanthropy, and his truly bizarre "Lady of the Forest" (a display of his contempt for straight males, like boorish philistine belching Ogrim), and even branded Dalish supporters who killed Witherfang and the 'weres as "Poachers" in the achievements. He also refused to develop a "comrades in arms" ending for the fight between Zathrian and Witherfang for a Dalish Warden. But he did not force us to support the Shemlen Werewolves!

I told Zevlor that I would escort him and his people to safety, which made him and Tilsis turn hostile, so I killed both. I was not give the possibility of explaining that I was risking my own life to escort them to Baldur's Gate, but it's still EA! Kagha grinned makuciously whrn informed of Zevlor's death, but that was that, and after I defeated (killed) Gut, Minthara, and Raghslin, Asharak briefly referred to Zevlor's "passing", then announced forthcoming festivities, as if nothing had happened to Zevlor. Earlier, I was railroaded (FORCED) into fighting the Druids, when I slept at camp, then returned to the Grove; a cutscene featurin Gnomish Druid Halah started and all of the Druids except Rath turned hostile. Likewise, if I put Arabella's parents out of their misery after Teela killed their darling thief, the Druids guarding the Sacred Grove and their bear turned hostile. If I killed Tiefs in the hollow, Arron (?) immediately tried to arrest my Tav.

I was able to kill Asharek, then talk my way out of arrest, leaving his bloody corpse while Tiefling trainees worked alongside with Wyll as if nothing had happened! I NEVER claimed that Larian's writers prevent the player from killing adult Tieflings, as I had killed over a dozen before putting up my first post on this thread. What I affirmed was the FIRST and starting comment by Twinkle Toes; Larian lets you kill Goblin children but Tiefling children are unkillable.


I must clarify myself. That path is certainly underdeveloped in the current stage. However, what you have described does strike me as an half-cooked plot rather than an option that won't exist at full release. INMHO, they should even give an opportunity to join the Shadow Druids, though I am not sure they would go that far.

Originally Posted by Natureboy
I explained in painstaking detail how Larian's writers MANIPULATE AND RAILROAD, not FORCE, players to side with EITHER the Tieflings or the Goblins (and the Goblins leg spreader ally Minthara) against the Druids. Apparently your reading overlooked this! As for "darker fantasy", it's very much a feature of French and Gallic children's tales as compared to their Anglo equivalents, as my Wallonian mother explained to me during my childhood. Within limits, I like it, too. What I hate is being manipulated into choices that in a real world are antisocial, decadent, and ultimately self destructive.

I do consider that a truly good character will try to strike some compromise between the druids and the tieflings. The tieflings have been chased from their homes with their families and in the 5e lore there is nothing about the fact they will become evil at one point or another of their life. I see nothing self destructive about the tieflings as they are now. Well, there is some theft involved but a capital punishment is way too harsh.

Once we depart from the most common idea of a good hero, it starts to get complicated. Neither choosing the druids only (which is underdeveloped), nor choosing only the tieflings is the ideal choice for a truly good character.

In my playthrough, I played a drow with few scruples. The point is that he saw the tieflings as something similar to him: an escapee from his world into a new hostile one (his tragic story is not really the point here). In a way, he felt the tieflings close. Petty crime is not an issue as he was doing very shady things to survive. He does like music so Alfira did seal the deal. Then he went into the druid grove. He is not the psycho like Minthara so he did save the child from Kagha. He did engage in a dialogue with Nettie. In the latest patch Nettie was civil and she did not try to poison him. Had she tried, that could have triggered a chain reaction -> I killed Halsin's apprentice -> Halsin would not believe him it was self defense (as they always do) -> he would no longer care about the druids -> they have that idol his ally needs not to explode; AND they are rich... You get it. Pile of druid corpses. Well, as of the latest patch, Nettie behaved well. Just some civil chat. A result -> he needs a healer and has done nothing wrong to the druids -> no need to strain his relationship with a healer he desperately needs... A psycho such as Minthara and the primitive goblins worshipping the very reason his freedom has been violated... they were no option. Not for this character, at least.

If there is some tipping of the scale, it is towards choosing both the tieflings and the druids. You have good reasons not to attack the druids and some reasons not to attack tiefling families. I wonder if the attack by Zevlor against you was a result of another half-ready plot or it was simply a sheer desperation (for which your character does not have fault but could have foreseen). However, this starts to change when you go towards neutral or evil alignment. Maybe your character has some issues with the influence of the hells on the Prime Material Plane? Or maybe he considers the presence of tieflings a sacrilege on the holy ground of Sylvanus? In my case, I might have been lucky with Nettie... what if I were not?

I slightly digressed but I see nothing that could have strongly motivated me to attack the druids even as a drow with dubious morals. The more of a good alignment your character is, the easier it will be to not attack the druids.


Originally Posted by Natureboy
Oh, no Druid would tolerate a Sharran cleric, because enclosing Toril in shadow would kill all photosynthetic plants and the ecosystems that depend on them! Fantasy has its' limits; all of Toril's higher vascular plants have leaves and chlorophyll for a reason! Are the "Leaflord" and the "Great Oak" mere euphemisms?

Well, it does depend on the character. It is a dire situation. I can imagine a more practical druid not killing a Sharran cleric as he might need every ally to survive. After all, what is a single cleric in the cosmic fight between the gods? But it does depend on your character.

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Thanks! I played through completion of the "saving Halsin" quest 2X, first with patch 3, then with patch 6. In patch 3 Nettie reached for a bundle of "Kelemvor's Blessing"(?), which my Druid immediately recognized as a lethally toxic plant. He explained through available dialog options to Nettie that he was still hoping for a cure, wherein her explanation of how the current outbreak differed from past isolated cases started. At the end of their conversation I agreed to her request that my Druid pledge to kill himself if symptoms developed; I saw it as a far more honorable and ethical response than ANYTHING I had seen from Astarion (who I could barely tolerate, and killed after he revealed his painfully obvious vampirism) or from generally neutral Shadowheart. Larian's writers have significantly improved as well as expanded their BG3 characters, or in the case of Shadowheart, made them far less opinionated and abrasive, largely in response to player complaints! Except for his horrific "frontier justice" comment (I'm from the US, and frontier justice was John Wayne glamorized mass genocide against Native Americans!) Wyll was very likable and proved to be the most useful member of my party (I mistook him for a ranger on the basis of the fight with the Goblins at the Grove Gates), though I suspect that his unwanted relationship with Mizora will spawn more Tieflings. Gale was interesting and well written but keeping him required the lost of multiple magical items, and as a Druid, I bristled at his request that I steal that Idol of Silvanus.

I never played a Druid in versions 2 through 4 of D&D, because their weapons limitation made them so useless. Playing as a High Elf solves this problem, as I favor Longbows and Longswords as weapons.They are a blast to play in BG3, just as bards were a blast to play as the most overpowered class in 3.5 D&D. Druids still suffer from the ecological.and science illiteracy of most D&D and Pathfinder writers, who too often confuse "animal rights" with environmentalism and traditional European Druidic belief systems.

I'm enjoying this game immensely, but too many aspects of the Druids vs Tieflings plot seem to have been inspired or stolen from DAO, which I intensely hated on nearly every level! I did resolve the "Saving the Refugees" quest in favor of both Druids and Tieflings in both full EA playthroughs, but felt that what happens when you confront Kagha about her Shadow Druid involvement was extremely heavy handed and quite unbelievable, so I skip it entirely; and agree with Halsin that she is redeemable and still potentially a fine Druid.

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Originally Posted by Natureboy
Thanks! I played through completion of the "saving Halsin" quest 2X, first with patch 3, then with patch 6. In patch 3 Nettie reached for a bundle of "Kelemvor's Blessing"(?), which my Druid immediately recognized as a lethally toxic plant. He explained through available dialog options to Nettie that he was still hoping for a cure, wherein her explanation of how the current outbreak differed from past isolated cases started. At the end of their conversation I agreed to her request that my Druid pledge to kill himself if symptoms developed; I saw it as a far more honorable and ethical response than ANYTHING I had seen from Astarion (who I killed after he revealed his painfully obvious vampirism) or from generally neutral Shadowheart. Larian's writers have significantly.improved their BG3 characters, or in the case of Shadowheart, made them far less opinionated and abrasive, largely in response to player complaints! Except for his horrific " frontier justice" comment (I'm from the US, and ftontier justice was mass genocide against Native Ameticans!) Wyll was very lukable


Sorry for slightly changing the topic but did you find any difference between Nettie in patch 3 and in patch 6 when playing as a druid?

In patch 6 she did not poison my drow (he did reply to her questions politely), at the end she just asked him to swear he would kill himself if he would turn. He did shamelessly lie to avoid complications and needless bloodshed. smile

Well, about "frontier justice" it was an unintended choice of words stemming from the general meaning of the term and the Wyll's nickname. It is an unpleasant association (mildly put) but I hope you will be able to separate the current context from the horrific historical event.

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I'm going to test this out; I've liked Nettie right from our first meeting, since I'm also a bird and wildlife rehabber, and have thus always spoken politely and respectfully to her! Plus, she IS the resident temporarily High Druid, and comes across as more stable and sensible than.the more excitable Halsin! I've been just the opposite with Astarion; I love the arts (especially music) but despise the narcissistic, affected, immature people they attract in droves.

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This is continuation from Cyberpunk. Trolls are here.

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Just some quick information bites to supply some extra background here:

Originally Posted by natureboy
Tieflings are explicitly described in the D&D 3 versions of the Monster Manual as predisposed towards evil because of their fiendish heritage,

They are not described such in 5e, which is our current setting. In fact, in 5e tieflings have no inherent good/evil axis alignment leaning at all – though they often end up pushed into selfish or more evil lifestyles as a result of undue ostracism and prejudice directed towards them by others...

Which, I hesitate to add but feel compelled to... your language indicates that you're the sort to be directly contributing to ^.^

Originally Posted by natureboy
A quote from a doomguard from ToB

An interesting quote but one which is entirely unrelated to the individual's race, and is solely circling around their being a Doomguard, which is a completely race independent thing.

(https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Doomguard)
Specifically: “Alignment: Any | Races: All”

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Likewise, if I put Arabella's parents out of their misery after Teela killed their darling thief, the Druids guarding the Sacred Grove and their bear turned hostile. If I killed Tiefs in the hollow, Arron (?) immediately tried to arrest my Tav.

To be clear.... You literally committed murder in broad daylight, and the residents of the grove who were charged with those people's protection take issue with you for doing this.

Let me say it again: You. Murdered. Innocent. People. In. Front. Of. Them.

If you expected *Anything* to come of that but to be put down like a rabid animal by the other residents of the grove, that's on you. They might not be happy about it, but these refugees are formally guests of, and under the protection of, the druids of this grove. And you attacked and murdered them. Yes: the druids will take issue with that. It would make zero sense for them not to.

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I was able to kill Asharek, then talk my way out of arrest, leaving his bloody corpse while Tiefling trainees worked alongside with Wyll as if nothing had happened!

This is not an issue of druids and refugees – this is just plain and simple Larian's poor world system. It occurs literally everywhere in all of their games and is not at all related to the thing you're discussing.

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Larian lets you kill Goblin children but Tiefling children are unkillable.


As long as you side with the goblins, Mol and her crew get very murdered and you can go and poke their dead bodies with sticks if you want to. You're right that the game doesn't let you do it, specifically; I agree that it's a poor form choice that lets you fight and kill goblin children, but flags the refugee children as KO only, for you... but they certain can be killed, and will be, if you make certain choices.

==

More personally:

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I explained in painstaking detail how Larian's writers MANIPULATE AND RAILROAD, not FORCE, players to side with EITHER the Tieflings or the Goblins (and the Goblins leg spreader ally Minthara) against the Druids.

You ranted quite heavily, I'm afraid. While your points themselves had some decent amount of merit (and I will be very quick to say and agree that Larian's writing is ham-fisted, crude and poorly executed...), you mostly come off as a hateful and spiteful person who played the game a certain way, and then resented it; that may not have been your intention, I fully expect it wasn't, but your choice of language and phrasing created that impression. You could have made your points very well without resorting to the derogatory language and forms you opted to use (and are still using). The result was that it wasn't very convincing, on the whole. (And on a personal note, I'm especially not appreciating the sex-shaming – it's exceptionally uncalled for and inappropriate, so if you could stop that, I'd appreciate it)

You're strong contention seems to be that the game brow-beats you into hating the druids and pitting you against them and disliking them... well... No, it doesn't, I don't feel. That's on you. I've played through the game a number of times and I haven't ever found myself feeling inclined against the druids in any way, nor have I felt like the game has been trying to make me feel that way. It's pitted me very specifically against Kagha, but not against the druid grove as a whole.

To be honest, natureboy, you just come off as one of the handful of people here who are fundamentally racist against tieflings on principle, and are resenting that the refugees in this picture are being painted in a sympathetic light (because, what do you know – they're dispossessed refugees fleeing the near destruction of their former home and who have now been ostracised from it for nothing more than their appearance and race), and are also tieflings.

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Have I mentioned how much I dislike the post-3e Tieflings? Gee, someone that looks like a literal devil or demon in a setting where devils and demons are very real and very much dangerous is going to be suspected of wrongdoing, feared or even hounded? What a shock. Trying to compare them to real-world ethnic/racial groups is foolish because the context between the latter and the former is radically disparate.

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5e doesn't try to remove those prejudices or mistrusts - they ARE there and present, and teiflings are often mistrusted, ostracised or maligned, that's still there - it's just been made clearer that it's mostly unjustified, and that they are (in reality) no more naturally or intrinsically disposed towards evil alignments than any other mortal creature.... though as with anyone who is often treated that way, they often find themselves pushed into those sectors of society as a result, so you do find a lot of cruel, selfish and mistrustful teiflings, but it is, specifically noted, not because of their blood, and not inherent to their being.

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It all depends on the setting.

Goblins in Faerun = eat people like Brian. Evil, malicious monsters. Fun for adventurers to kill without feeling guilty. Same is true with gnolls.

Goblins in Eberron = neutral race that coexist with others. Not necessarily fun for adventurers to kill because you might have killed someone not necessarily bad. Now, you have to wonder. Did I just kill this goblin because he made enemies of the guy who hired me? What if he was a good guy who was working down at the refugee center helping war-torn victims of the Mourning?

If they make every race not evil and "realistic" with some good and some bad, it ruins the fun. Let me kill baddies without worrying about real life politics and social issues.

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Originally Posted by GM4Him
It all depends on the setting.

Goblins in Faerun = eat people like Brian. Evil, malicious monsters. Fun for adventurers to kill without feeling guilty. Same is true with gnolls.

Goblins in Eberron = neutral race that coexist with others. Not necessarily fun for adventurers to kill because you might have killed someone not necessarily bad. Now, you have to wonder. Did I just kill this goblin because he made enemies of the guy who hired me? What if he was a good guy who was working down at the refugee center helping war-torn victims of the Mourning?

If they make every race not evil and "realistic" with some good and some bad, it ruins the fun. Let me kill baddies without worrying about real life politics and social issues.

Eberron is a setting designed to turn everything Dungeons & Dragons on its head: amusing if you like being immersed in subversions, but far from classic fantasy.

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While I enjoy the deeper characterisation of things like goblin tribes, and having elements that let us see their 'real-person' culture and practices, etc., it's still a valid point that we very much need elements that CAN just be an evil to fight, without shades of grey. Shades of grey is fun and compelling ,when that's what you're looking for, and it does make a lot of PnP campaigns a lot more nuanced and interesting... but in a video game format, where combat will be the largest of the three pillars, the need for a simple evil that *doesn't* raise questions of moral quandary is still essential. It's a difficult balance at times.

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"Grey only" is far from my tastes; at the end of the day - be it on a table or on a computer - this is an escapist fantasy hobby and more of the same depressingly familiar murkiness we're subjected to in reality is thoroughly unappetizing.

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One of the worst things Star Wars did was start making this same mistake. What was fun in the original movies was that the Empire was evil and bad. The Rebels were good. What was so fun was that Stormtroopers were inhuman bad guys you could kill without remorse, like shooting endless armies of battle droids. Luke Skywalker killed millions of Imperials by blowing up the Death Star, and it was awesome because he killed millions of bad guys.

Then they made the Empire maybe not so bad, humanizing Stormtroopers and making it all more realistic. Suddenly, Stormtroopers were people with families and such. Imperials might be people just fighting for legit peace and justice. They just aren't on the side of the Rebels. So who's bad or good anymore?

And just like that, it's not as much fun because now a single Stormtrooper death makes one wonder. Did I kill someone good who is just not on my side with my agenda? Where once I could run around in my backyard shooting stormtroopers for pretend and hacking them all down with a lightsaber and I'd feel like a superhero, now I must question the morality of my fantasy story. Was Luke actually the good guy or the bad guy? He murdered millions with one shot. These were people who had no say whatsoever about the decision of some murder hobo Moff. They were government employees just trying to work for a living.

Now, all my childhood heroes are villains because people want to make the fantasy story more realistic. Han, Luke, Leia... They're now all murderers butchering innocent people just because they want democracy instead of a monarchy.

That is what will eventually happen to D&D if people keep pursuing this "no race is really good or evil" line of thinking. This is not reality. That's why it's fun. Real war sucks. It's not fun. It's tragic and terrible. I don't want my fantasy adventure game to be too much like it or it will suck too.

We want to play a game where we don't have to feel bad for murdering countless monsters. I know a goblin is evil and baby monsters will eventually grow up to be adults who will eat people. No question. Kill the vermin. Wipe them out without remorse before they come and get you or others. I am a hero for exterminating them all because I know they're all bad without question. In fact, I can feel good about killing as many as possible because they are all bad. The world is a better place because I butchered the bad monsters and saved lots of people.

As for tieflings, yeah. Never evil. Neeshka from Neverwinter Nights 2 was the first tiefling I ever encountered. Never evil. Mischievous and devious, maybe, with a splash of moral ambiguity, yes, but not evil. There's quite a difference. Never were they man-eating vile murderous monsters as a race.

And finally, a one-off is fine. Kobalds like Deekin are rare. They certainly aren't the norm. So, although you might encounter a single decent goblin at some point, making for a fun and interesting companion, it isn't by far the norm, making killing other goblins or kobalds still good.

Last edited by GM4Him; 08/01/22 06:27 AM.
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Admiral Piett might disagree, the Empire is full of evil people to be sure, but it rules through fear, people are cowed into evil because they live under a regime that normalizes it. This is actually a important aspect of the lore because its the actual manifestation of the conflict between the dark and light sides of the force, as the Empire's power grows it's influence on the people of the galaxy does so as well, and with that so does the dark side.

More apropos is a little fellow named Jabba the Hutt. We meet exactly one Hutt in all the (original) movies, he happens to be a big gangster, but because one-out-of-one of the Hutts we meet is a gangster, it means that %100 of all Hutts are now kingpins of the galactic underworld. So really he should be called Jabba the Tatooiner because calling him Hutt is a bit redundant. Assuming that Hutt was his species anyway. I wouldn't have an issue with this in most fantasy settings because morality can be inherent, it can be magically something you're preordained to, or it can just be something you are naturally predisposed of, like goblins and gnolls; but in Star Wars being good and evil is all about something called the Force, so having entire races of gangsters kind of doesn't totally jibe with it. It would have been better if the Hutts were a race of super mercantile types among whom the less scrupulous could easily fit into such underworld roles. Considering most of this is still just EU lore, that could still end up being the case.

As for killing goblin children, you interact enough with them and are shown enough of their rearing to understand that they're as ruthless and bloodthirsty as their elders to make it not seem so outrageous (I do K.O. them to be honest).

Last edited by Sozz; 08/01/22 06:48 AM.
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