According to Webster: "Pal.a.din, noun; 2) an outstanding protagonist of a cause."
It is this definition that is the justification and inspiration for making the Paladin a general group like the Rogue, rather than simply a special version of the Warrior. The original paladin in the PHB was intended as a holy warrior, supporting the cause of Good in all its forms. The article "A Plethora of Paladins" by Christopher Wood, which was printed in Dragon #106, brought up the important idea of equality. Why does only Lawful Good get the benefit of these warriors of faith? Why can't people believe strongly enough in the tenets of the other alignments to have their own paladins?
This article serve to present a balanced system to present/support this view. We will be primarily looking at the "generic" paladin of each alignment. However, we will include pointers on how to customize these paladins to serve a specific deity. Throughout this work, the word "paladin" will refer to any holy warrior, regardless of alignment. Although this work will still make reference to "good" and "evil" in relation to the paladin, it is interesting to note that with this system the word "evil" can now mean "anything opposed to the paladin's cause" (thus a LE paladin would call a LG paladin "evil").
While alignment is no longer an issue for becoming a paladin, it does affect the required statistics of each version.
|Any Good||12||--||9||--||13||17||STR & WIS|
|Any Neutral||9||--||9||16||16||--||INT & WIS|
|Any Evil||17||--||9||--||9||*||STR & CHR|
* For LE/NE, minimum CHR is 9, 16 or greater for +10%;
For CE, maximum CHR is 9, 4 or less for +10%.
All paladins need a minimum constitution of 9 because they are primarily warriors. The good requirements are the same as those for the PHB paladin. These were defined as such because good paladins tend to lead by example, and offer advice to those they would help. The reason neutral paladins place high emphasis on the mental stats is because it is a very difficult task to determine the correct way to maintain the balance. Evil paladins primarily desire strength, for might makes right. CE paladins have different views on CHR because they prefer to go out and perform evil acts - they don't care if people like them. LE paladins like CHR because it helps them get others to see their ways; it also allows them to manipulate others easier. NE paladins also like high CHR, but for a different reason. Most NE paladins work for either the benefit of themselves, their cause, or their deities (depending on which they hold in highest re- gard). A high CHR helps them to survive and deal with anyone long enough to accomplish their goals.
Additionally, race is no longer an issue. Who's to say that only humans can get worked up enough about something to rate a paladin? The current racial limits for fighter still apply (thus a halfling paladin can only reach 9th level, while a dwarven one would be able to reach 15th). Some DMs may desire to only allow demi-human paladins if they are serving a racial deity.
The basic statistics of proficiencies (weapon and nonweapon), THAC0, saving throws, starting money, experience chart, and hit point progression are the same as they are in the PHB. Note that Paladins may NOT specialize in a weapon unless their diety allows priests to do so.
The powers of the PHB paladin now apply to all paladins. However, their affects vary depending on alignment. The common abilities are listed below. Any variations are given in Table 7 (which is at the end of this section). Common abilities:
This ability works up to a range of 60 feet. The paladin must concentrate for one round in a specific direction. This only detects living creatures, not spells or traps.
+2 bonus to all saving throws.
Aura of Protection
This ability is a 10 foot radius effect. Within the radius, all summoned creatures and creatures of the specified alignment suffer a -1 penalty to attack, regardless of who it is. Creatures affected by this aura can easily spot the source of this difficulty.
Holy Weapon Bonus
A paladin using a holy weapon (of his alignment, obviously) projects a circle of power in a 30 foot diameter area. This dispels all hostile magic of a level up to that equal of the paladin's.
Immune to Disease
Note the disease cannot be magical in nature; i.e. mummy rot and lycanthropy can still affect the character.
Any paladin can "Lay Hands" on himself to heal up to 2 hit points per level of the paladin. It can be used on others, but its effect varies based on the paladin's alignment. Regardless of the recipient, this power can be used only once per day. In addition to being immune to natural diseases, the paladin has some power over them as well. This power varies with alignment and can be used once per week for every 5 levels of the paladin (once at 1-5, twice at 6-10, etc.).
This is the ability to either turn or command undead creatures and those from the outer planes. It is gained at 3rd level, and the paladin functions a cleric two levels lower - i.e. a 3rd level paladin acts as a 1st level cleric with regards to turn/command. The ability to turn or command is based on the paladin's alignment.
Call for Steed
Upon reaching 4th level, the paladin may call for his warhorse. This animal, which need not be a horse, is special and bonded by fate to the paladin. The paladin receives a vision of his mount, and then must quest for it.
Upon reaching 9th level, the paladin attracts a body of 2-20 0th level soldiers to help him further his cause.
Casting of Priest Spells
Upon reaching 9th level, the paladin may cast priest spells. He may cast spells from the following spheres: All, Combat, Summoning (Minor), plus 2 others which depend on alignment. A paladin can never gain bonus spells from a high WIS, cannot use clerical or druidical scrolls, and may not use priestly magical items unless they are also allowed to the Warrior Group. The paladin's spell progression is the same as the one in the PHB.
|Heal Lawful Others
|Heal Self Only
|Heal Chaotic Others
|Lawful Evil||Illrigger||Good||Good||Protection (R)
|Neutral Evil||Arrikhan||Good||Good||Protection (R)
|Chaotic Evil||Maladon||Good||Good||Protection (R)
* = Names of all but the LG and CE paladins are taken from Mr. Wood's article.
** = This power has the same affects as the 1st level priest spell "Analyze Balance" (as found in the Tome of Magic).
*** = Instead of the standard -1 aura, the Paramander has the following abilities in the 10' radius: Soothing Word (see Complete Priests' Handbook) and Moderate Emotions (similar to bard ability, reactions are shifted one category towards "neutral").
**** = These abilities can be chosen by the paladin. Each one must be specified at the beginning of the week, and will remain until the next week.
(R) Denotes Reversed spells only (if no reverse version, DM's option to allow access).
These restrictions are very similar to those stated in the PHB.
Cannot possess more than 10 magic items.
These items may not exceed one armor, one shield, four weapons (individual arrows, bolts, etc. do not count), and four others.
A paladin does not hoard wealth.
He keeps enough treasure to support himself in a modest manner, pay his henchmen, men-at-arms, and servitors a reasonable rate. He may also keep enough to construct and maintain a small keep. All excess must be used to further the paladin's cause - whether it be by donations to the church, a sponsored institution, or other groups who also believe in his tenets.
A paladin must tithe 10% of all income (regardless of form) to a church or institution of his alignment.
A paladin has restrictions on the henchmen he employs.
A paladin may only employ henchmen whose alignment either matches his, or those who act in a manner consistent with the paladin's alignment. He may cooperate with people of other alignments only as long it is necessary (and they behave themselves).
All paladins must always act in a manner consistent with their alignment. If they ever unwillingly stray, they must atone. If they willingly stray, they lose all benefits and become a fighter of equal level.
The Mertidon believes in all that is just and right. He is in full support of the Law; but he also follows the spirit of the Law. All crimes must be punished; but if mitigat- ing circumstances are involved (killing in self-defense for example), he will ask for leniency in the sentencing. He will strive for Justice, but within the framework of the existing Laws.
The Myrikhan also believes in the cause of Good. But whereas the Mertidon wishes the Law to be followed in all cases, the Myrikhan is willing to ignore the Law in certain cases. In the Myrikhan's view, the Mertidon is short-sighted. The Myrikhan will look to the long term consequences of his actions; if Good will be better served by ignoring a law, so be it.
The Garath is the proponent of the Individual Good. These paladins tend to strive for Justice, regardless of what Laws are broken/ignored in it's achievement. They tend to be short-sighted with respect to the consequences of their actions. Whatever achieves Good is what these paladins will do.
The Lyan believes solely in Law and Order. Mercy does not apply. Justice does not apply. All that matters is that the Law is obeyed. This also applies to the world, not just society. If something can be made more orderly without violating natural laws, it should be changed. The Lyan never performs any action without thought beforehand. Everything is considered; no chaotic actions can be tolerated.
The Paramander is the active proponent of the Balance. Whereas most Neutrals tend to work subtly to maintain the Balance, the Paramander works openly. Good and Evil, Law and Chaos; none of these truly matter. Any means will be used to maintain the Balance.
The Fantra is the polar opposite of the Lyan. Chaos is all that the Fantra strives for. It does not matter if the revolution will bring Good or Evil, the process of change is all that matters. The Fantra acts mainly on instinct; thought rarely enters into the equation.
While the Mertidon enforces the spirit of the Law, and the Lyan enforces the letter, the Illrigger studies both. For the Illrigger looks for loopholes in the laws of Good and uses them to further his goals, while loopholes in the laws of Evil must be eliminated. The Illrigger seeks to manipulate the Law to benefit he and his cause, no one else. It is this framework that allows the Illrigger's cause to succeed.
The cause of the Arrikhan is Evil to benefit the self. This is one of the few paladins to take the long view. If Law is needed to win, so be it. If Evil is needed, so be it. These paladins are very sneaky, always working towards their own personal causes; but sometimes helping others along the way.
The Maladon seeks only to work Evil for its own sake. They do not worry about the consequences of their actions. This tends to make them rather short-lived. They rule by the "might makes right" rule. They have no concerns for others. As long as senseless Chaos reigns, they are happy.
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