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ToEE dev diary at RPG Vault
Preview - posted by Saint_Proverbius on Fri 13 June 2003, 14:29:23Tags: Temple of Elemental Evil
RPG Vault has another developer diary for Temple of Elemental Evil, this time covering the concept of Party Alignment. Here's a taste:
Early in the development of ToEE, we felt the need to control which character alignments were allowed in a particular group. We were creating test parties consisting of lawful monks and chaotic barbarians, or paladins and evil sorcerers, and this felt wrong. In a paper and pencil session of D&D, the DM might disallow such pairings (certainly the pairing of paladins with any evil characters) or at least point out the unlikelihood and difficulties of that such a group would face. And certainly, such pairing would lead to bickering and intra-party strife.
Such mixed-alignment groups could abuse the quest and dialogue system of our game very easily. For example, a good character in the party might pick up a quest, such as locating a holy religious artifact, which would never even be offered to an evil character. But an evil character in the party could then complete the quest by destroying the artifact in the name of evil. Should the party be penalized or rewarded for that act? Should the good character be penalized and the evil one rewarded? Since the player can add and remove characters from the party during play, it would be an easy task to swap in and out characters of different alignments as needed, to maximize quest experience and take advantage of dialogue options.
I've kind of wondered why a lot of the previous generation of D&D games even bothered with alignment given how inconsequential it was or handled poorly. It's nice to see some more thought on the subject.
Spotted this at HomeLAN Fed.