This question involves ethical and moral alignments in game systems.

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46
votes
9answers
9k views

Can a Black Dragon Hatchling be raised to be good? Or is it inherently evil?

The following came up during my campaign: The characters got their hands on some Black Dragon eggs. The PCs put out the thought that if they got the eggs to hatch, they could raise the dragons to be ...
44
votes
6answers
7k 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 ...
40
votes
17answers
24k 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 ...
37
votes
8answers
9k 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 ...
35
votes
10answers
7k 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 ...
34
votes
8answers
13k views

How can I play a lawful rogue? [closed]

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 ...
34
votes
11answers
9k views

Can I be a follower of an evil god and not be evil?

I'm playing a warlock, a follower of the old god Cthulhu (chaotic evil). My character is chaotic neutral, and has been doing some not-so-neutral things (in my opinion). My patron god is a big part of ...
34
votes
12answers
4k views

Creating the personality of a character different from myself

I am a newbie in playing role-playing games, and after several games, I've come to the conclusion that character personality creation poses a bit of a problem for me. I mostly tend to create and ...
28
votes
7answers
14k 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 ...
25
votes
2answers
3k views

Is there an iconic monster or creature for each alignment?

In my D&D 5e game, I have a custom cosmology, and I'm currently working on a concept for an afterlife plane where any sentient creature who enters is sorted by alignment and guided to the ...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

What does “chaotic” as in “chaotic good” or “chaotic evil” mean?

I do not play D&D, but players in my roleplaying game have called stuff "chaotic," like "chaotic good" and "chaotic evil" and I would like to know what they mean. The game I play does not use this ...
23
votes
4answers
6k 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 ...
22
votes
6answers
4k views

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

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 ...
21
votes
8answers
2k 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
3k 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
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 ...
19
votes
6answers
4k views

How much greed is too much for a Chaotic Neutral character? [closed]

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 ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

Why are Dragons “Always X” alignment?

As per this question and the answers provided therein, Dragons are of the "always X" alignment. Which means... Always: The creature is born with the indicated alignment. The creature may have a ...
18
votes
10answers
7k views

My novice players slaughtered some NPCs out of hand. Do I write this off as a learning mistake or show them the consequences of actions?

I have two roleplaying newbies in a 5th edition D&D campaign. I started them at level 1 to prepare them for joining some more experienced players for a level-4 campaign in the near future. The ...
18
votes
3answers
3k 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 ...
18
votes
3answers
4k 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
2answers
5k 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 ...
15
votes
8answers
2k 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 ...
15
votes
12answers
5k views

How do you adjudicate what alignment a PC's actions are?

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 ...
15
votes
2answers
709 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 ...
14
votes
7answers
3k 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 ...
14
votes
4answers
5k views

Is there anything preventing a Lawful Evil Paladin?

The concept With the vanishing of alignment restrictions on Paladins in 5e, I have been toying with the idea of a (PC or NPC) Lawful Evil Paladin. My particular image is of a Noble background ...
13
votes
8answers
7k 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, ...
13
votes
3answers
3k 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 ever ...
13
votes
6answers
654 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
1answer
963 views

Does a “Helm of Opposite Alignment” work on demons?

Reading the description of the Helm of Opposite Alignment, I don't see anything which would prevent it from working on demons. But somehow I have the strong impression that the evil of a demon is an ...
12
votes
6answers
4k 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, ...
12
votes
2answers
903 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 ...
12
votes
5answers
958 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
8answers
555 views

How can I effectively track changes in alignment?

In my game, I have decided that alignment will play a larger role than it does in most others. Players declare their 'intended alignment' at character creation by writing it in their alignment box. ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is the alignment conflict in the Ranger/Druid multiclass combination evidence of an error?

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 ...
11
votes
7answers
2k 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
2answers
996 views

What is the alignment of a Gold Shadow Dragon?

What alignment are Gold Shadow Dragons? I recently purchased a miniature booster box and inside I found a Gold Shadow Dragon and have not been able to find any sources that describe its alignment. ...
11
votes
3answers
634 views

Is there a spell or effect that reveals or identifies alignment?

I am looking for an effect that you can cast on a creature (or character) to reveal its true alignment. As long as it reveals true alignment, I don't care if it's a single target effect, a zone effect,...
11
votes
2answers
758 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
9answers
9k views

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 ...
10
votes
1answer
2k 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
4answers
3k 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
777 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
6answers
835 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
416 views

How do you play a character stripped of alignment? [closed]

We are playing a game that doesn't rely too heavily on alignment except for the paladin and that we are on a campaign to stop demonic forces, so we are encountering lots of chaotic-evil outsiders. ...
9
votes
2answers
453 views

Alignment change spell/item in 5e

My fiance is running a campaign and the players have the opportunity to obtain a wyrmling black dragon. Now black dragons are chaotic evil, but the monk of the group believes that it shouldn't be ...
9
votes
1answer
510 views

Can a demon or devil be redeemed?

Alignment is an essential part of the nature of celestials and fiends. A devil does not choose to be lawful evil, and it doesn’t tend toward lawful evil, but rather it is lawful evil in its ...
9
votes
0answers
445 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 ...
8
votes
6answers
2k 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 ...