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MurderWeasel
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That boy needs therapy!
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Don't have a ton to say on TVTropes, but image-wise I've got somewhat mixed feelings about alignment charts. What I really like about them is that they celebrate a wide range of characters, and I don't really like the idea of putting forth winners/survivors/the most murderous villains or whoever as the brand representatives of SOTF, as it were. All of those sorts of characters are interesting and important, but the real beauty of our story is its ensemble nature, the way characters who die before the halfway point without a kill to their name can be fondly remembered and have just as deep and key and interesting stories as the dude who kills twenty-seven people and goes home to become a nuclear physicist or whatever. The V4 alignment chart does a great job of that... except that a. it's V4-only and b. it's an alignment chart.

What I don't like about alignment charts (and what pains me and leads me to often be less than constructive in discussions about alignment overall) is that alignment represents a massive moral simplification with a side order of personality quiz heaped on top. Alignment springs from very specific quirks of a particular style of fantasy world, one where "evil" is not only an identifier one may objectively hold, but also one that many aspire to. There are, like, evil clubs for the evil and so on, and while it's not exactly black and white, much of that comes either from the system not surviving contact with actual play (given that most people enjoy at least a tiny bit of moral ambiguity), or from diving fully into the bizarre nature of such a world and playing it to the hilt, or from ignoring or lampooning it and using it in name only. Part of the joy of SOTF is its myriad shades of grey. Even our very concept stems from characters being thrown into a situation where conventional ideas of morality don't cleanly or easily apply (the reason one handler years ago famously insisted that SOTF in fact belonged to the post-apocalypse genre). Alignment charts are catchy, fun, and popular online, but I just feel they simplify something in a way that does the game a fundamental disservice if it's the first line of advertisement.

That's, of course, not to say I hate alignment charts as a fun thing to be made and shared. I think they're really cool in that context (which is the context that Little created the V4 chart in; it was pressed into service on the TVTropes page, iirc, because it existed and looked nice, rather than being created for it). I'd love to see more, for versions, for the game overall, whatever. If we're looking to specifically replace, though, I have a few thoughts.

What I do love so much about the current image is how it captures the variety of roles (it features two survivors, three characters who died before the halfway point, killers [including the version's biggest], pacifists, player-hunters). I love the way each character is given a little spotlight through a quote encapsulating their personality. If there were some way to have something like that covering the whole span of the story, and in some way stripped of the whole alignment shebang, I think that might come closest to capturing the spirit of SOTF accurately.

Really just musings, though. I dunno. I don't hate charts. If we're aiming specifically for an upgrade, though, I'd love to see it be the best it can be, and this is mostly a ramble about that.
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