This question involves moral alignments in game systems.

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39
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7answers
3k views

What's the deal with alignment languages?

In early D&D, there was the concept of an "alignment language." The original "little brown book" D&D says only: Law, Chaos and Neutrality also have common languages spoken by each ...
37
votes
8answers
6k views

Is summoning undead evil? Why?

My Question is: Where can I reference the RAW as to (1) that summoning undead is always an evil act, and (2) why summoning undead is always an evil act? The background is: Some of the players in my ...
36
votes
17answers
13k views

Can a D&D Necromancer be of a good alignment? [closed]

I've been considering creating a good-aligned necromancer, but I'm not sure if it's realistic from a role-playing perspective. Is there anything inherent in necromancy that would require someone to be ...
32
votes
10answers
3k views

How can a GM justify changing a player's alignment?

Lately, in one of my campaigns, I've been having problems with a character who everyone agrees is acting out of alignment. Everyone, that is, but him. The problem, of course, is that he's playing a ...
31
votes
7answers
9k views

How can I play a lawful rogue?

I wanted to try something new in a Pathfinder campaign, so I created a lawful good cleric/rogue. Problem is, I have no idea how to play a rogue as lawful, due to this: From the PRD: Life is an ...
21
votes
4answers
3k views

Why do D&D Paladins Have to Be Lawful Good?

In just about every edition of D&D (save for 4e), Paladins are required to be Lawful Good. If they stray from that, they are completely stripped of their powers. This means that evil deities can't ...
20
votes
7answers
6k views

How can I roleplay my evil character properly?

I have started playing as an evil character in a group of neutral and good characters. We are traveling in a caravan through an undead-ridden world. No teleportation or plane traveling possible. We ...
20
votes
8answers
1k views

Would the alignment of a character with multiple personality disorder change? [closed]

A character has a certain alignment that in general defines how he acts. With multiple personality disorder or other similar disorders (maybe bipolar disorder with severe depression/severe mania), ...
19
votes
12answers
2k views

What to model the behavior of D&D's chaotic evil Orcs on?

Instinctively, I find myself modeling a tribe of Dungeons & Dragons Orcs as similar to Klingons from Star Trek, or Vikings, or even a gang of bikers or skinheads. But none of these models truly ...
19
votes
6answers
3k views

Is Coup de Grace on sleeping and bound opponents an evil act?

So I was recently participating in a Pathfinder Society game. Our ship was attacked and boarded by pirates. First thing that happened was one of our party cast sleep, and succeeded in putting four of ...
18
votes
4answers
4k views

If a character does something evil, but they can justify it as good are they evil?

Let's say there is a forest gnome named Treeloff. Now Treeloff is one of the kindest, most innocent people you will ever meet; however, one day that all changed. You see, Treeloff loves the forest ...
18
votes
5answers
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How much greed is too much for a Chaotic Neutral character?

I have recently started GM-ing a new group of players, most of them are unexperienced. One of the players is a Chaotic Neutral Rogue. This description of Chaotic Neutral mentions that such character ...
18
votes
3answers
2k views

Does a summoned monster's alignment matter?

I am playing in a 3.5 game recently, and a question has come up that none of us could really answer. Does the alignment of a summoned monster (as per the Summon Monster I-IX spells) matter at all? For ...
16
votes
3answers
1k views

Is negative energy (or chanelling it) necessarily evil?

I'm building a Lawful Neutral cleric of Abadar, and picture her channeling negative energy as "Abadar's rebuke of the unjust". In my case, she'll use the Rulership variant channeling rules, cutting ...
15
votes
8answers
1k views

How do you keep PCs from killing each other when 1 or more is evil?

I'd like to run a more mature themed campaign, along the lines of game of thrones. In that story, several of the main characters have an evil alignment. I'd like to do something similar to this ...
13
votes
6answers
486 views

How should a neutral character focused on balance be presented?

In many RPGs (or at least the ones I've heard of) the alignment system tends to have two definitions of a true-neutral character. Generally, they are something to the effect of what follows. ...
13
votes
2answers
347 views

History of the Alignment System

Who created the alignment system? Was it Gary Gygax & Dave Arneson (D&D)? Or David A. Hargrave (Arduin)? Or perhaps Michael Moorcock and Paul Anderson? Where did it come from? In what ...
12
votes
7answers
2k views

Is casting the spell Blood Transcription an evil act?

A player of mine in a recent game of Pathfinder was playing a Lawful Neutral Magus and was about to drink blood from a fallen spellcaster to get his prepared spells for the day by using the spell ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Animate Objects vs Animate Dead - is there anything stopping the Good-aligned 'Necromancer'?

Is there anything stopping you using Animate Objects, with or without Permanency, to affect a bunch of corpses? If so, what? And would that qualify as an Evil, Chaotic, or Neutral act? Have you ...
12
votes
8answers
3k views

How do I handle a player who plays his character far differently than the character was originally presented?

I'm not asking how to make every character be played as I would play them. I'm asking how to handle a situation in which the character that the player presents to me as a GM (with complete back-story, ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Are there “Good” goblins?

Plain and simple: Are there "good" goblins? Every goblin I've seen is always evil aligned in the DnD 4e Monster Manuals. I know this could apply to other RPGs but as DnD is what I'm familiar with, ...
11
votes
7answers
960 views

Anyone know of a good generic moral/alignment tracking system?

More specifically, system for tracking a characters morals/alignment, like Humanity in Vampire or darkside points in Star Wars. I'm looking for a system that's either designed to be generic, or could ...
11
votes
5answers
793 views

Roleplay alignment in combat

I am playing a highly combat focused story in Pathfinder. My character is a neutral evil summoner, he basically thinks that the real freedom is achieved by leaving all moral, and that the weak must ...
11
votes
2answers
511 views

Cleric's Aligment Changes?

There is an neutral cleric, Maximus, who is worshiping not a deity, but a cause; he's got two domains, War and Travel. At first level, he chose that he'll channel positive energy and will turn undead. ...
10
votes
8answers
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What is a good way to explain the difference between a Chaotic Neutral character, and a character who is just crazed?

When I first started playing with a group of completely new players, one of the first things I did was to explain the alignments as best I could at the time. When describing Chaotic Neutral, my exact ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

What are the consequences of the new (5 choice) alignment system in 4e versus the (9 choice) system of earlier editions?

How do you represent creatures from the missing alignments? For example: Personified forces of nature (chaotic neutral), aka Greek mythology, which, while dangerous, are not necessarily evil? The ...
9
votes
1answer
511 views

How would an Unaligned Vecna worshiper refrain from being/becoming Evil

I have a Tiefling Warlock character that I think I would like to worship Vecna, to uncover more secrets of her pact and unlock more power. How would a character like this refrain from falling from ...
9
votes
1answer
831 views

Can a true neutral character cast spells affected by alignment?

Is a true neutral character restricted by alignment from casting a spell that is, say lawful or chaotic, or can he/she cast a spell no matter if its affected by an alignment. (A lawful character can't ...
9
votes
1answer
893 views

Are there Race/Alignment restrictions for classes in the PHB?

I'm looking through the PHB and I notice that none of the Classes explicitly state an Alignment or Race limitation. There is flavor text, but there is nothing that looks like a rule. I see some stuff ...
8
votes
2answers
549 views

Can a Half-Dragon's alignment change from their dragon's alignment type?

Is it possible for a Half-Dragon's alignment to change from their dragon's alignment type? For example, if a blue Half-Dragon (Lawful Evil) had an alignment-affecting spell cast on them, or was bitten ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

How can I deliberately cause my player character's alignment to shift?

I'm playing D&D 3.5e as a human Ranger. Our party has recently had a couple of wins, resulting in some nice loot. I was lucky and got the pick of the pile both times. The first time I got a ...
8
votes
3answers
754 views

Chaotic Neutral Alignment and Greed

Could you have a chaotic neutral character, who in a public setting appear lawful good? Saving people, turning in bad guys, following all of the laws of an area to a T, if he knew that by doing so it ...
8
votes
0answers
204 views

How should I handle the rest of my party, who believe all Necromancy must be evil? [closed]

I'm playing a 9th level wizard, and playing him as a necromancer. He is nice and very outgoing, and has plans to build a city in which he will have a church for every alignment, as well as an ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

Giving away too much information about alignment?

So, I had an idea for a future campaign where spells and magical abilities would be color coded based on the user's alignment. Good and Evil would be white and black respectively, while Lawful and ...
7
votes
4answers
374 views

How to make D&D-like Alignment work [closed]

This is something I've been thinking about for some time, and now KRyan's Excellent Answer made me think about that again: is there a way to make alignments work, albeit not as intended? I'm looking ...
7
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3answers
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D&D 2E Ranger/Druid Multiclassing Combination - Alignment Conflict

In 2nd Edition D&D, it mentions in the Player's Handbook that Half-Elves can multiclass as Ranger/Druid. This is a contradiction with the alignment rules, stating that a Ranger must be Good and a ...
7
votes
3answers
795 views

What to do about a morally ambiguous character heading towards evil?

I'm currently involved in a really fun campaign with close friends and am running a PC with a troubled past. The character is Chaotic Neutral and has typically exhibited not entirely consistent ...
7
votes
3answers
233 views

Can I change the alignment of my intelligent item?

I am a chaotic neutral ranger who has a belt of physical might that I dropped a lot of gold to have my sorcerer make for me. He rolled a natural 20 so the GM imbued it with sentience and rolled that ...
6
votes
12answers
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Does good alignment on characters mean they are not supposed to do unlawful things (for example stealing)?

We have a group of three characters: The lawful good paladin (acolyte), the lawful good fighter (soldier) and the chaotic good druid (criminal). All try to help NPCs in need, won't fight between ...
6
votes
3answers
684 views

Running a “Chaotic Evil” PC in a morally ambivalent group?

So I've been running in a Shadowrun group for a while now and my character served as the group's only moral compass. He got killed in a rather dissatisfying string of events, but now it's time to whip ...
6
votes
3answers
543 views

Good modifications to the lycanthropy alignment change?

Related to my other question, my PCs who have become were-rats don't want to become Chaotic Evil, but do want to remain uncured. They're up for struggles and such, and aren't looking for it to ...
6
votes
4answers
312 views

pathfinder: how to handle evil actions

I have a player in my current campaign, who is slaughtering captured goblins. He has encourage other players in the group to join him in considering them to be vermin. And has talked about ...
6
votes
1answer
357 views

Can Bluff be used to emulate an alignment?

If a character has something like the Touch of Golden Ice feat (Book of Exalted Deeds, pg41) could an evil character use bluff to avoid the ill effects, or is there an item that already does this?
5
votes
7answers
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Is a Racial hatred to all Humans enough for an evil alignment?

I have a Strix Character that I am building. In Pathfinder, all Strixes HATE Humans, and even get a racial attack bonus against them. Since they hate humans so much, they see no issue with harming ...
5
votes
5answers
404 views

Games with a granular alignment system?

I've recently started out a Basic Fantasy campaign with several new players. In this campaign, I want their characters to gradually gain their alignments based on they actions they take. For example, ...
5
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2answers
274 views

Alignment restrictions and Trap the Soul

Saw it mentioned in a thread (How do you make a vampire cleric stay dead?) and now I'm curious... Does binding a creature's soul into a gem in itself constitute an evil act? Trap the soul says ...
4
votes
5answers
827 views

How do I deal with PCs who are evil?

There is a certain player in my group who always wants to play an evil aligned character. Now, I always tell him that he should make it unaligned so that he can still do the more "bad" things but it ...
4
votes
5answers
566 views

Good alignment on characters facing a vampire

While running the Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil campaign, two of my players were arguing about what they should do about a vampire NPC. Try to change the vampire's alignment and turn him ...
4
votes
1answer
589 views

What happens when an Inquisitor's alignment changes?

According to the rules: An inquisitor’s alignment must be within one step of her deity’s, along either the law/chaos axis or the good/evil axis. So what happens when the alignment of an ...
4
votes
2answers
376 views

Can a character change alignment and deity during the campaign?

Here's the situation: my PC's alignment was neutral, but I don't feel like it matched the personality I wanted him to have. Can I change my character's alignment and, as consequence, his deity?