Wrapping my head around Unfettered: Chaotic Neutral vs. Chaotic Evil:

Total posts: [11]
I'm making an adaptation of Merlin from the Arthurian Legends in my game, in this I intend him to be an Unfettered who is obsessed with becoming a Reality Warper, and perhaps his experiences have twisted him to the point where his sense of humanity is stripped away, to where most will view him as more akin to a Humanoid Abomination.

The thing is...I don't intend him to be truly evil, but instead I intend for him to be the farthest thing from good without going over the edge to evil.

The various tropes about Unfettered, Moral Event Horizon, and whatnot seem to give mixed messages. For instance, the entry for Unfettered says that there are no Moral Event Horizons for them, but why then are there so many Complete Monster type unfettereds?

Basically, I view Merlin as more someone who will do literally whatever it takes, but isn't really malicious, his attitude is 'nothing personal.' Is that enough to make him still Chaotic Neutral, even if it means blowing up the occasional orphanage?
Away on the wind~
I always read Unfettered types as being True Netral.
There are too many toasters in my chimney!
3 Tzetze27th Oct 2010 10:41:18 PM from a converted church in Venice, Italy
Unfettered means that they don't care about being good or evil, as I understand it. They just get shit done. If that means bombing an orphanage, fine, if that means building six, fine, they don't care. In the simplistic system they'd be True Neutral.
I figured that not caring about good or evil and just doing stuff was more Above Good and Evil
5 Tzetze27th Oct 2010 10:44:41 PM from a converted church in Venice, Italy
Eh, semantics.

He wouldn't be Chaotic Neutral unless his goal was chaos.
the Ephemeral
I think part of the reason it's so confused is that the line is rather subjective. A part of your audience may have a Berserk Button about bullies, and once you have someone shove the little boy out of the way, that's it.

For me, at least, it's a question of balancing the books: an unfettered is pursuing one goal to the exclusion of all other ideas—though not foresight—and the line is how important that goal is. Are you doing whatever you need to do to stop the universe from being destroyed? Okay. Are you doing whatever you need to do to have as much fun as possible? Not okay. There's also a fair bit you can do in presentation—go into why Merlin feels he needs to do this, and it gets him some sympathy bonus.

Dunno if any of that works with the story you're writing, though. *shrug*

edited 27th Oct '10 10:45:49 PM by RedWren

One has to remember that a lot of the time the morality of a person is not dependant on that persons own outlook, the whole no one thinks they're evil thought, and first and foremost TVtropes looks for tropes patterns in a story that tend to replicate themselves and move around therefor if a unfettered fulfils the role of a complete monster then for that work for all intents and purposes he is  *.

It sounds like you have the the idea of the unfettered pretty well handled for your character. Perhaps for further reading The Other Wikis articles on Utilitarianism and Solipsism would be useful, the former for the mindset the latter is to get you in the proper head-space for thinking of characters thinking differently.

Now that I think about it I should type more quickly or write shorter posts.

edited 27th Oct '10 11:04:35 PM by GiantSpaceChinchilla

It was plenty short enough.

Don't know if it'll help, but a couple of questionable things he has done:

1. Learned necromancy and created undead, even using people who don't really deserve such a horrible fate. Why? Just to get the hang of it. A homework assignment, basically.

2. True to the original Merlin, women are his weakness, and thus he teaches women even though his methods of teaching leads to varying degrees of madness, and you practically have to be at least a little crazy to be considered 'worthy' to learn from him...after all, most normals would probably consider him a Humanoid Abomination.
"Learned necromancy and created undead, even using people who don't really deserve such a horrible fate."

Is it a horrible fate, though? That all depends on what being undead is like in your story. (Incidentally, if undead are mindless, a pretty good argument could be made for them being incapable of suffering.)
If I'm asking for advice on a story idea, don't tell me it can't be done.
Yeah I was trying to get a little too fancy there.

I guess it depends on how undead are handled in the game.

At the very least, assuming that all he's doing is animating the body with fell magic, he's desecrating a person's remains.

However, if it somehow re-souls the body into the mouldering undead corpse, then he is more or less condeming them to something like an And I Must Scream.

Point being, this is one instance where he has done something vile. Not out of any sort of malice, but simply to get the hang of the spell.
I imagine it must be a selfish person who only helps someone if there is a reward, but that does not kill innocent people.

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Total posts: 11