When a Noble is a Paladin

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
Tom Kalbfus
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When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:15 pm

Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:35 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
His gear and clothing end up in some guy's private collection of archaic tools and armour, and his body parts end up in the stockrooms of numerous organleggers.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Mon Oct 17, 2016 4:11 pm

alex_greene wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
His gear and clothing end up in some guy's private collection of archaic tools and armour, and his body parts end up in the stockrooms of numerous organleggers.
Yet if he can detect evil, he can see them coming! Detect evil is something most people in the Traveller Universe don't have, and there is all sort of evil going around, if someone intends him evil, and intending murder qualifies, then the Paladin can detect it.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 5:21 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:
alex_greene wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
His gear and clothing end up in some guy's private collection of archaic tools and armour, and his body parts end up in the stockrooms of numerous organleggers.
Yet if he can detect evil, he can see them coming! Detect evil is something most people in the Traveller Universe don't have, and there is all sort of evil going around, if someone intends him evil, and intending murder qualifies, then the Paladin can detect it.
Does detect evil work against someone filling the room with pure nitrogen?
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Mon Oct 17, 2016 5:26 pm

alex_greene wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:
alex_greene wrote:His gear and clothing end up in some guy's private collection of archaic tools and armour, and his body parts end up in the stockrooms of numerous organleggers.
Yet if he can detect evil, he can see them coming! Detect evil is something most people in the Traveller Universe don't have, and there is all sort of evil going around, if someone intends him evil, and intending murder qualifies, then the Paladin can detect it.
Does detect evil work against someone filling the room with pure nitrogen?
Sure it does, if the intent is to kill, that is evil.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 5:45 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:Sure it does, if the intent is to kill, that is evil.
Or pest control.

Tom, the presence of D&D characters in Traveller is not thematic of the game at all. To have something like Paladins implies that religions have force, and that Good and Evil exist as some sort of metaphysical dichotomy governing forces in the universe.

Traveller is science fiction. Even the weird stuff like psionics follows patterns established in scientific research. Admittedly, psionics is pseudoscientific - but then, so are grav propulsion and meson beams. Everything is explainable through some variety of technobabble or another, and nothing is left to mystical concepts and woo like gods and demons.

To bring in D&D characters would be to condemn them to a long, slow, tedious death, like taking a Terran butterfly and sticking it in an airtight bell jar. This universe would kill them, the first time one of them started waving a sword at a man carrying a gauss rifle.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby AndrewW » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:00 pm

alex_greene wrote:.This universe would kill them, the first time one of them started waving a sword at a man carrying a gauss rifle.
What if they dropped a fireball on the man carrying a gauss rifle?
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:08 pm

AndrewW wrote:
alex_greene wrote:.This universe would kill them, the first time one of them started waving a sword at a man carrying a gauss rifle.
What if they dropped a fireball on the man carrying a gauss rifle?
The only people able to cast fireballs would be the ones who happened to be carrying flamethrowers at the time.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby -Daniel- » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:41 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
If I were going to try this in my game the first thing I would do is ask myself can the Paladin be reached by his/her god. Remember their powers come from their god. So if they can't they lose all of it. If, on the other hand, they do still have access to the god, I would ask if that god has worshipers in some system(s) that the Paladin might link up with.

As for "acting" like a Paladin, I would expect that he or she would be seen as a Religious Fanatic and how they are treated would be based on how many laws they break. In the end, if you play them smart, it might be an interesting exercise. If you play them as Lawful Stupid then I imagine they will not last long. :D
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby -Daniel- » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:43 pm

alex_greene wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Suppose we translated a D&D paladin's abilities into Traveller terms. Forget about level advancement for a moment. Suppose this Paladin appeared in the Traveller setting, and he has some ability to lay on hands and heal people, lets say its a 3rd level paladin for argument's sake, Those abilities are Aura of good, detect evil, smite evil 1/day, Divine grace, and lay on hands, some other power is supporting tese abilities, or lets just say they become psionic powers to remove that complication if you like. So lets say this paladin wanders around, buying passage on ships, and learning new skills, while acting like a paladin, what is likely to happen?
His gear and clothing end up in some guy's private collection of archaic tools and armour, and his body parts end up in the stockrooms of numerous organleggers.
Wow, what a way to go. :lol:

I would hope the Paladin would be a little better at avoiding trouble, but then again, who knows. :mrgreen:
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby AnotherDilbert » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:17 pm

alex_greene wrote:Tom, the presence of D&D characters in Traveller is not thematic of the game at all.
Who hasn't run crossovers between Fantasy and Sci-fi? I know I have, the results can be amusing.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby AnotherDilbert » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:21 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:
alex_greene wrote:Does detect evil work against someone filling the room with pure nitrogen?
Sure it does, if the intent is to kill, that is evil.
I seem to recollect that Detect Evil mostly works on true evil, such as demons, not simple murderers. Depends on what system you use, I suppose.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:27 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
alex_greene wrote:Tom, the presence of D&D characters in Traveller is not thematic of the game at all.
Who hasn't run crossovers between Fantasy and Sci-fi? I know I have, the results can be amusing.
I remember the comic strip The Travellers, written by Mark Harrison, where the bad guy conjures up all sorts of D&D horrors and monsters ... and the Travellers just send in Gavin, armed with an FGMP.

BOOM. D&D creature-shaped shadows on the wall.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:29 pm

alex_greene wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Sure it does, if the intent is to kill, that is evil.
Or pest control.

Tom, the presence of D&D characters in Traveller is not thematic of the game at all. To have something like Paladins implies that religions have force, and that Good and Evil exist as some sort of metaphysical dichotomy governing forces in the universe.

Traveller is science fiction. Even the weird stuff like psionics follows patterns established in scientific research. Admittedly, psionics is pseudoscientific - but then, so are grav propulsion and meson beams. Everything is explainable through some variety of technobabble or another, and nothing is left to mystical concepts and woo like gods and demons.

To bring in D&D characters would be to condemn them to a long, slow, tedious death, like taking a Terran butterfly and sticking it in an airtight bell jar. This universe would kill them, the first time one of them started waving a sword at a man carrying a gauss rifle.
You sure gods don't exist in the Traveller Universe? Maybe they are not called gods, but higher powers could certainly exist and they are explainable in scientific terms, that is if you can understand he science. Besides you only have to explain what you see, the Paladin's powers, he prays to somebody, and somebody answers, to everyone else it could just as easily be psionic powers. There is a psionic power to heal oneself, a Paladin can heal others with his lay on hands ability, that makes him a little different and puts him in competition with doctors. But in Traveller, there is a man or a creature behind that curtain. the reason I would use a paladin and not a wizard, is because his powers are a little more low key. Anyway fireballs don't impress so much in Traveller.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby alex_greene » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:34 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:Anyway fireballs don't impress so much in Traveller.
Nor do knights in shining armour waving swords about. Plate armour would be laughed at by anyone wearing real combat armour, and the humiliation alone would probably destroy the poor innocent cinnamon roll's mind long before he came across anything really dangerous, such as a speeding truck or hard vacuum.

Stuck in a universe ten or more technological levels above him, with not even so much as Streetwise skill to help him survive the mean concrete streets and glassteel canyons of the Far Future? Future Shock alone would break his soul, even before the crushing sense of obsolescence got to him.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby AnotherDilbert » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:59 pm

alex_greene wrote:Nor do knights in shining armour waving swords about.
But Marines in combat armour waving cutlasses do?


To a technological world he would just be a barbarian with delusions of grandeur, until he start to perform miracles such as Lay on Hands. There might be a new Imperial Research Station if Imperial authorities finds out... Or a religious renaissance.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby -Daniel- » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:35 pm

As I was sitting here at work doing some mindless repetitive tasks I was thinking about Tom's idea. Some poor D&Dish Paladin is fighting a horde of demons, he is the last man standing and about to go down himself. His god pulls him from his reality and sends him to a small planet in the Traveller setting. On this planet is a small convent of priests and nuns dedicated to the same god that the paladin serves. The paladin shows up in the middle of the chapel bloody and almost dead. The priests see his symbol and realize the god has sent him there. They remove his odd armor and place him in one of their autodocs. Once he is healed enough to talk, they spend weeks discussing where he is and who they are. The paladin shows some minor psionic abilities but clearly is disturbed he can't hear his god speak clearly anymore. Rather he just feels a faint presents. The priests explain they are looking for an old artifact and the paladin agrees to help locate it. The paladin and a couple of the priests go on a journey to find this artifact and thus starts the adventures of D&D Paladin in a Traveller setting.....

I figure it will all be up to how much effort the player and GM want to exert to make it work. But it could be a fun exercise in character.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Condottiere » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:17 pm

1. Transplant the abilities of a paladin does not necessarily mean ideology, the obvious example would be Jedi Knights with the capability to induce rapid regeneration. Since it's likely psionic abilities, not likely to be welcome within the borders of the Imperium. The Zhodani may have such a militant order.

2. Such paradoxical genre crossovers may cause your campaign to jump the shark, if you actually use fantasy archetypes.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:19 am

A Traveller Paladin need not necessarily be an out of touch barbarian in plate mail, the weapons and equipment he uses isn't the important part of being a Paladin, you can easily substitute futuristic equivalents. Paladins see things in terms of good and evil, in much the same way as the Jedi in the Star Wars Universe. If one looks hard enough, one can find both good and evil in the OTU. Paladins tend not to see grey morally ambiguous positions, their world is in black and white, and their challenge is to apply that philosophy to the world they see around them, they have some unusual abilities, but in many ways they are like Don Quixote, it their minds a noble is supposed to be brave and honorable, they understand modern military tactics, but eschew tactic based on betrayal and deception. Paladins are honest to a fault, they tend to be popular with the public because of that honesty, but they need sneakier characters to watch their backs.
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Re: When a Noble is a Paladin

Postby -Daniel- » Wed Oct 19, 2016 4:30 am

Tom Kalbfus wrote:A Traveller Paladin need not necessarily be an out of touch barbarian in plate mail, the weapons and equipment he uses isn't the important part of being a Paladin, you can easily substitute futuristic equivalents.
Ok you are now changing the question. You asked about bringing a D&D Paladin to the Traveller setting. You now are asking if it is possible to make a religious fanatic soldier. Of course that is easy to do. No challenge there.

To just create a religious fanatic you could use the Marine career for example then just play the character as a more "black or white" thinker. The original idea seemed more of a challenge to play. :-)

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