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Author Topic: Time for some Evil now!  (Read 7577 times)

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Offline manfred

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Time for some Evil now!
« on: December 10, 2002, 03:11:34 AM »
There was somewhere else thinking about what makes an Evil God Evil, so I better ask ye smart folks out there:

But what _is_ Evil actually? How is it? How does it work? Why...
Trying to get a description valid for any culture. Let's get physical, err,  philosophical now.

Some HOWs for the beginning:

Evil Seems To Offer More.
The easier path. The ultimate knowledge. Power. Babes-in-bikinis-and-ton-of-$$$ (tm). A comfortable life. Death to your enemies.

Evil also has more marketing advisors, more (if not all) managers and many, many lawyers. Evil simply tends to look better.

Evil Rarely Offers Something For Other People.
Not so true, but the traditional view. Evil shall serve only your own egoistical purposes. But there are quite many people doing Evil in Your interest. If people think it is a holy duty they may do ANYTHING, even the greatest Evils.

Evil Requires Other People.
Could Robinson Crusoe be evil if he was alone? No sure about it, but I think not. What can you do to yourself without hurting others to be marked as evil, anyway?

That said, something to be considered evil should have suffering of Others as result in the end.


Any more ideas?
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Offline Agar

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Re: Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2002, 11:25:38 PM »
Quote from: "manfred"

Evil Requires Other People.
Could Robinson Crusoe be evil if he was alone? No sure about it, but I think not. What can you do to yourself without hurting others to be marked as evil, anyway?


Here's a thought: Taking your own soul.

Let's assume in this fanasty world that everyone does have a soul. Now souls are normally give to one god or another to take care of. I imagine that having a celestial power watching over your spot in the afterlife and in this life on earth comforting, and as such, has likely become something most partents do for thier kids, if the gods allow it.

But what if a person doesn't want that god to take care of thier soul? A person could become possesive of something as precious as that. The soul does represent where you're going to go after you die, controlling something is always a mark of wealth, what person driven to aquire wealth and the controll that comes with it doesn't try to prolong how long they can stay in control? As far as jewels and wealth goes, the saying is you can't take it with you, so do you think it could be possible to instead of taking the money to the afterlife, to try instead to bring the afterlife to the money?

So if you have a soul, and somehow you can rip it free of the gods, that would make you in charge of your afterlife, so naturally, why not postpone it till it's more appealing than the life you have at present?

But you are, in some manner, defying the gods thier livelyhood. A man who gives a farmer grain and then goes into the field and takes the crop denies the farmer food. If enough crop is taken, the farmer starves. Souls are more precious than grain, so won't that make the god that is denied a soul suffer more?

Of course, on retrospect, you do have to hurt the god to be evil in this way, so it does prove your point about evil has to hurt someone.


Well, trying to set a universal definition of "evil" :twisted: will be difficult because different culture have different interprtions of evil. In one culture, you make your home a place of safety to protect your loved ones from the evils that roam the land, in another, you are keeping your family as captives and denying them freedom. One culture says spirits are ancestors trying to help you and guide you through life, another says spirits are demons.

There are very few universal "evils" and also very few universal "goods".

Evil Seems To Offer More

Evil gives you stuff, but doesn't good give you stuff too? Good gives peace, Evil offers control; Evil shows off pleasures everlasting, Good shows off ... pleasures everlasting; Good will give you all your wishes if you let it have your soul to take care of, Evil ... will give you all your wishes if you let it take care of your soul.

Seems like six of one, half-dozen of the other.

It does seem like to do evil, someone has to get hurt, but beyond that, that seems to be all I can come up with for the moment.
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Offline manfred

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Re: Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2002, 03:14:30 AM »
Quote from: "Agar"
Good gives peace, Evil offers control


Seems like another descriptor of Evil. There's nothing bad about control, but...
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Offline Strolen

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2002, 12:27:59 AM »
I think the "Evil offers control" is a key to why evil.

Most evil you see is because of a need, want, or pursual of power. Whether it be as a kid torturing animals or as an adult waging war on others. It is all about the power and having people under your control.

Being evil doesn't necessarily mean he has to maim and torture everybody, but if that is how that person feels the most power, then that will be what he does regardless of what harm it causes people. Others use power emotionally over others and others use power of their position. I guess selfishness and thirst for power are what I see as main points of what is evil. Their actions to get this power is what creates their evil in the eyes of those around them.

That can explain followers too, they want power too and will be happy with whatever leftovers dribble down.

Others can be just plain insane I suppose as well. Who knows what a childhood fear of bricks may do. Want to tear down all the cities?

Just a couple thoughts from left field. Back to studying for finals  :cry:

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Offline Agar

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2002, 12:59:10 AM »
Evil doesn't need to follow any rules. For that matter, neither does good, the rules issue falls more into the law/chaos conflict. Psychopathic Evil would be someone who hurts EVERYONE they meet, sooner or later, but not every Evil has to hurt everyone.

Much of Evil is based on point of veiw. One man's invading barbarian horde is another man's way of sending the teaching of his religion to the ignorant masses. Every action has a point, but whether or not that point is Evil depends on how it lands.

A king hears of food riots in a small town in his kingdom and orders some men to take some of the cattle of his lands to the town so it can eat. On the way there, recent rains cause a swamp near the road to produce some unhealthy gases. The cattle breath the gases in and become dangerous to eat, but alive and as frisky as cows get for the duration of the trip. The cattle are delivered and the townsfolk get making big mac's. After the kings men have left, the town begins to sicken and die, and perhaps spread rumors of plauge. Surviors may claim the king poisoned them. Did the king mean to do Evil? Did his men? The food riots are over, but because the town is dead, instead of fed.

Evil can be devious and keep friends close and treat them well, its just what they do or what the command if they are in a position to do so, that is Evil.
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Offline DaWergyling

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EVIL
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2002, 10:57:10 PM »
Any of you read 1984 by  George Orwell? It's about Power/control and what people will do to have it.  :twisted: Evil :twisted:  is simply undying lust for power, homicide, or utter  chaos.
Power
In the book 1984 the author clearly states that power is power over another creature, and when another creature obeys your commands, they may be doing it under their free will, so to know you have complete power over them, you must make them suffer. If they still obey, you have complete power over that person. THAT is evil

Homicide
Not really TRUE evil. While some call it justice, others call it slaughter. When people make judgements of whether someone should die, others say that they should become immortal. Of course, homicidal lust IS TRUE evil.........

Chaos
Another form of TRUE evil. Of course, this does not include those who like to make life interesting. I mean the kind of people who like to be anarchists just to see pie charts change.


        Also, someone once wrote:
When the world is evil and everyone sees that it is evil, that is good
When the world is good and everone sees that it is good, that is evil
    (Hence good/evil manifest off one another)
  Evil drives us (well, maybe not all of us) to do insane   things.  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:
And agar, you are right, the difference between good and evil is based on your perception of the object. For example, in the crusades, millions of men died fighting "devil worshipers", when the only difference between the religions was who the messiah was. The stuff before this paragraph is how we percieve evil,
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Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2002, 07:46:10 PM »
Another thing: He/she who weilds power will be considered evil.

People never like to be less powerful than someone else, because that person might just want to kill you. :twisted: Thing is, we are only content when we are more powerful than anyone else. :x  When two powers are equal, tension increases really, really, really, fast. Then comes the media attack, and the military comes soon enough. It's pretty much the ying-yang thing. However, as mentioned before, the homicidal, power, or chaos lust is TRUE/PURE evil,  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted: but all of them are also indicators of insanity.
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Offline Ria Hawk

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2002, 10:00:50 PM »
All I know is that you can't have good without evil.  To quote The Shadow: "There can be no light without shadow."  Good defines evil and vice-versa.  Evil is... the opposite of good.  And good is the opposite of evil.  I know that's circular logic, but it's the best I can do.
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Offline Agar

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2002, 11:31:39 PM »
It's also what sets the Law/Chaos conflict in perspective. A capital law system, where stealing bread means you lose a hand and looking at another man's wife means you lose an eye, can be quite Evil. Effective, yes, but still rather evil. Conversly, Chaos can be good. No two snowflakes are alike, roses do not grow in a straight lines, no two pizzas taste the same... mmmm pizza. 8)

And like good and evil, chaos is the absence of law, and law is the absence of chaos. No one person is completely lawful, or completly chaotic, or good or evil, for that matter. Does that redeem them and mean we should talk and find out how they felt when they slaughtered our village? No, I don't think so, get a rope.

Everyone is at least a smidgen something. Otherwise completly chaotic would be able to polymorph into a goose when the wind blows into the moon's eye, completly lawful would be in line getting permits to have brown hair instead of blonde, completly evil would be stabbing everyone with the shattered bones of thier relitives, and completely good would be keeled over dead to spare any microbes thier immune system would attack.
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Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2002, 02:33:10 PM »
I agree. This is that ying-yang concept again...
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Offline manfred

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One for Chaos
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2002, 05:21:01 AM »
Someone mentioned Chaos being Evil. Probably under the influence of Law's propaganda claiming all will fall apart if there are no rules to regulate everything, and Chaos strives just for that and...

Wake up. We are all more chaotic than you can imagine. Of course some weaker minds want to hide from reality, and think of laws, rules, guidelines and principles to make the world seem a reliable, predictable place. But it is not. And those that see the reality as it is, are marked Evil for not wanting to cooperate. Of course Law is quick to claim itself as Good, but if you listen closely, you are more likely to hear words like fairness or justice... or simply lawl. It is also untrue that followers of The Many Paths (not those of The-One-And-Only-Acceptable-Way) cannot have rules. Rules are for those that need them or want them, and chaotics too can have their rules if they want. What are those? I won't tell you. Those with Chaos in mind make their own path through life, don't just adapt to the rules around.

It would be easy for us to claim that Law is actually Evil. Any Evil overlord will soon issue many rules to make people suffer. But that is not for Law's or Chaos' sake, that is simply Evil. We do not try to mark Law as such, for it can cause good and evil things as anyone can. We even do not want to convert people to our views or claim to know the only truth. Few are indeed strong enough to endure Chaos. We feel pity for you others. :cool:

Chaos is like Life? Chaos is Life itself. Chaos is Change. Chaos is all that makes Life interesting. Do you want stability in your life? You forget, there is only one moment when you (and your body) can be stable, absolutely stable...  when you are dead.


(As this is turning into an all-alignment thread, take this as a challenge, ye poor lawfuls!)
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Offline manfred

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2002, 05:28:39 AM »
I see a fine debate here. But I started this Evil thread with certain thoughts in my mind...  Now I can use all pretty ideas here, and no one can stop me! :twisted:

Game_Balance=off
I think that some classes, mainly the cleric, should be more powerful than any other. They are supported by Gods, after all. (I omit certain worlds where gods do not exist, only the faith doing the trick) Any wizardly spell should be also accessible, if it is not against the religion. Theirs magic would be more reliable, better, faster, you name it.
Game_Balance=on
This is balanced by rules stating what the holy man has to do and how to behave. To let it not fall into the cliche Go do some Good out there, here come...


Sample quirky Good-Evil worldly, philosophical and religious views!
  • Slothful people seeking the easier path are, or will be, or will find evil.
  • Seek evil where the beauty seems to be, do not detest what seems to be ugly.
You can come up, I met a trustworthy old lady up here! Don't believe that witch-tales!

  • Evil never comes alone.

(Good as folk-wisdom, but if followed as a rule, you will always expect more reinforcements of the evil you battle now, and distrust anyone that happens to be along. Embrace the paranoia!)

  • People are to give their souls to the gods after death, so any delaying of the death is evil. Created undead are to be laid to rest, uneasy souls returned to the afterlife. It is but forbidden to prolong your life by any means. You can live healthy, but things like potions of longevity must be destroyed and never used. It may be also your duty to lay to rest anyone that prolonged his life this way.

  • The soul you offer to a god must be in some way wonderful and unique. That is why you are so obsessed with the quality of life, whatever you imagine under it, or do not want to risk your life, because you are not yet worthy.

  • Suicide may be an acceptable solution if you cannot solve your problems.
  • Good can be viewed as Evil and vice versa, if you look from the right angle. A preacher of this faith might get problems if he constantly finds Evil in anything good, and Good in anything evil.
  • As doing some horrible Evil makes you suffer horribly in the afterworld, it is not just to kill someone because of it. It is surely just to imprison him if he could do more Evil, but let him know all that will follow, describing the suffering of evil souls etc.
  • You cannot punish someone who wants to do evil, only someone who has done evil.
  • You can harm others only as much as they did harm you. (In effect, they would have to kill you to allow to kill them.) Eye for an eye, scratch for a scratch.
  • Those that want power are up to evil, power should go to those that do not want it.


Any more ideas, for Good or Evil, or for Chaos or Law for that matter? Religious principles or not, some may make pretty bizzare (N)PC's.
Do not correct me, I know I am wrong.

Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2002, 02:56:14 PM »
Doh!

I feel like trent lott, even though I'm a democrat.

I WOULD like to mention:

The evil = chaos thing was not saying that chaos is evil. I'm saying that your local anarchist is evil, not change. As they say...
Quote

The only thing constant in this world is change

I agree with you manfred. Thing is, I only meant that chaos CAN  be evil, It just depends on to what degree it is. I, however, didn't mention how LAW could be evil. A total completion of either is evil.
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Offline Ria Hawk

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2002, 10:17:55 PM »
This is turning into a fine debate, and I'm glad I post to this site.  Anywhere else, I think, and this might have started a flame war.  In fact, it has sparked one or two ideas for me, which I shall have to develop.  If they're any good, I'll tell you what they are.  It also occurs to me that "alignenments" in RPGs try to classify something that is unclassifiable.  Good, evil, chaos, and law, are all on a sliding scale, and there are many factors that affect it all.  After all, I created a character I listed as "Chaotic good" who was a crime boss.  A nice one to be sure, but still a crime boss.  I think, in the end, that there is a little of all those so-called alignenments in everyone.  I'm not even sure it's possible to be totally one category and none of the others.  Anyway, that's all I wanted to rant about.
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Offline Agar

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2002, 12:47:47 AM »
I always have fun being devil's advocate, so here's the flip side to the good rules of conduct.

Sample quirky Evil worldly, philosophical and religious views!
  • People who appear to be working hard are gullible. Exploit their wants and needs to get your work done for you.
  • Beatiful people are more influential than ugly people, and therefore, more powerful. Destroy, either physically or socially, anyone more beautiful than you, exploit common people, only ally yourself with people slightly less beatiful than you.
  • Good people are bad tacticians. They overextend the needs of their forces to what they would need to get the job done. Avoid seiges for a simple trade embargo and strave them out.
  • Never travel alone, for that is when a mob of people claiming "to right the wrongs you have wrought" will pounce on you and lynch you in a manner that would make you proud.
  • There is no reward in death. Convince someone else to be your martyr and do everyting in your power to keep your guiding influence on this earth.
  • Your afterlife is secure and it's your god-given right to make your jouney there at least half the fun.
  • Always make sure you can shift the blame on to some one else, or better yet, coerce them to make them the real culprits in any of your endevors. Suicide is for people who got sloppy.
  • Anything that appears to be good is rotten to the core and more crooked than you can imagine. After all, look at your peers.
  • You were born into your life and you must live it. When you were created, so was your destiny and even your afterlife. Nothing you can do will make you not be who you are, nor will it make your afterlife any more or less than it already is. Fulfill your desires and get what's your in the end.
  • They cannot punish you if you want to do evil, they can only punish you if you get caught.
  • People who won't or can't defend themselves are weak. Use them up untill they break or remove them if they get in the way.
  • Power should go to those that can controll it. A nation or other body in chaos is a danger to all.
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Offline Ria Hawk

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #15 on: December 20, 2002, 12:53:19 AM »
I like that.  I shall definitely have to use it.  Hee. :twisted:   Good Rules of Thumb to Create Villains By...
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Offline manfred

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2002, 05:31:57 AM »
Quote from: "DaWergyling"
The evil = chaos thing was not saying that chaos is evil.

Take it easy  8)  just wanted to provoke to let someone else write a lawful propaganda, to have all the alignements covered.

Thanks for those Quirky Evil views, will (ab)use them surely!  :twisted:
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Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #17 on: December 21, 2002, 11:55:04 AM »
Okey. Going back to law. Law was MADE to stand by good, but got Fl_lcked  up when the term "Justice" came. Law was originally a tool used by good, but is used alot by evil also.

Just sumthin to add.....,
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Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2003, 03:19:27 PM »
Another possible way to explain this is that: Good is often power to the many. Evil is power to the few. That's often the case. After all, if two people are equal in power, they should not be able to hurt each other.. or at least very much anyway. Thing is, equal power is the shortest-lived system. Soon someone gets cronies and here comes the good/evil ruler. Law, after all, is some people making sure nothing breaks out, unless they feel that they can do whatever they want (think Napoleon/Hitler). however, power to all is just an attempt to stop harm to another. Then, of course, we go to the most obvious explanation for good and evil, which is that:
Good is everyone is happy. Evil is where only SOME people are happy.

And Agar, as for one of you evil statements, a good friend of mine once said:

"It's not against the law unless they catch you!"
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Offline manfred

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2003, 07:15:01 AM »
Quote from: "DaWergyling"
Another possible way to explain this is that: Good is often power to the many. Evil is power to the few. That's often the case. After all, if two people are equal in power, they should not be able to hurt each other.. or at least very much anyway.

However, power to all is just an attempt to stop harm to another. Then, of course, we go to the most obvious explanation for good and evil, which is that:

Good is everyone is happy. Evil is where only SOME people are happy.


So it is, or so it seems. So many delightful principles to spoil... :twisted:

  • Power should go to the many, for many people are stupid. If you make the smart talk, you can easily sway masses as you wish, without anyone realising YOU are in control. Anyone wanting to change this can be swiftly accused of wanting to claim power for himself. Always easy to spot someone's name.
  • People should be equal in power, for in any argument they could kill one another. And so they need someone who gives advice or makes the decision.
  • Power to all is just an attempt to stop harm to another. If you make all decisions yourself, people will sooner or later feel you are responsible, for everything. If you help overthrowing a tyran and building a democracy, you can always appear to be a naive idealist. If many have control, it may be hard to see who makes the decision, and who pays for it.
  • It is never possible for everyone to be happy. But claiming to act in the interest of our happy tomorrow, for our children, for a better future etc., is a nice way to

a) attract interest and support of many people
b) step right into the face of a chosen minority and create the common wellbeing from theirs suffering
  • Many can be prevented from seeking their own luck, if you convince them Evil is where only SOME people are happy. They should believe in work for everyone. The able should be pushed aside to work in asylums and hospitals, the stupid shall be pushed into government, for they are easier to control, and make even more Evil if they view themselves as good.


Ah, it is so nice to be Evil :twisted:
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Offline Agar

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2003, 11:54:44 AM »
Try to follow these rules and let your players blunder.
Myhuu - ha - ha -haaaaa!  :twisted:

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Offline drphluid

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Definition of evil
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2003, 04:38:42 PM »
Evil is a point of view and is never the quest of the evildoer.  Team A thinks that team B is evil for not being part of Team A and doing Team A things and vice versa.

This is regardless of power.  The Europeans basically wiped out the “evilâ€? American Indians.  The Indians did not have power of the majority of the New Americans.  They were annihilated only because they were on the wrong side of the argument.  Being evil is the excuse that was used to annihilate them.

It is a safe bet that most people who bother to consider them consider the Nazi’s evil.  The interesting thing about that is that the Nazi’s is that they LOST WWII.  Which point out the obvious fact that the winner writes the history books.  Therefore the losing side is the evil side, if the Nazi’s had won we would be spreading their propaganda.

So the definition of evil is the other side, the losing side, and/or anyone different enough to be feared.
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Offline DaWergyling

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2003, 06:19:31 PM »
True. Very true. We're trying to get at the definition of evil before it got all screwy. I'm not saying that you're wrong, but hey, the "There is an evil out there" caused fantasy to be popular. In the real world, there's always two sides to the story. In fantasy, only one.
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Offline manfred

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Re: Definition of evil
« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2003, 05:02:05 AM »
Quote from: "drphluid"
It is a safe bet that most people who bother to consider them consider the Nazi’s evil.  The interesting thing about that is that the Nazi’s is that they LOST WWII.  Which point out the obvious fact that the winner writes the history books.  Therefore the losing side is the evil side, if the Nazi’s had won we would be spreading their propaganda.


Seen the movie Vaterland (Fatherland)?
The Nazi's have won, and journalist researches some dubious evidence, that a certain minority (the Jews) were treated quite badly in that war...

Would make quite a plot, with everyone be told their proud nation's history, with the occasional war. Then, several sessions later they begin to see that the evil barbarians/orcs/indians/elves/dwarves/whatever may have not even caused the war, and were during and after it systematically killed off.
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Offline manfred

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Time for some Evil now!
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2003, 05:08:52 AM »
On a whole another note, see Archetypology 101 on RPGnet. Interesting reading, pretty long, but don't forget the part about Humans.

Its quite good and has some points about Evil we shouldn't miss.
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