Is there any way for an evil NPC to cover up their alignment if a player attempts to detect evil?

I am working on a Silver Dragon antagonist. This NPC will appear to the players as a number of human NPC's setting tasks, missions, appearing as a friend. The dragon's goal is to attempt to prevent an ancient doomsday prophecy coming to fruition. Each spell it learns will become branded to its scales in a series of runes which in human form will take the form of tattoos so over time the players may be able to work out these different humans are connected in some way.

The Dragon will determine the only way to stop this prophecy is to enact an ancient ritual involving it sacrificing itself to destroy all intelligent creatures with evil or chaotic alignment in all the planes of my world therefore becoming the very prophecy it was seeking to prevent. At first I thought the dragon would remain good as it believes its aims are good, but, I now see it will have to have its alignment shift as the campaign progresses and it becomes more convinced that mass genocide is the only way to save the world from lawful good at the start, to chaotic good and then chaotic evil.

Is there a current way for this dragon to hide its true alignment from any magical check or am I going to have to create a way for it to do this? Possibly one of the spells the party hunt out for it.

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    \$\begingroup\$ It's not clear what you're trying to protect from. Is there a spell or feature you are trying to protect against? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 24, 2020 at 16:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ When you 'check its alignment' do you mean 'there is a Pact of the Chain warlock in the party who has taken the Sprite familiar and thus has access to the only means in the game for players to directly check alignment' or something else? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 24, 2020 at 16:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just to note that Sprites are accessible by several other means as well. But the main point above is valid. \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Sep 24, 2020 at 16:27
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    \$\begingroup\$ This is a rare case when I think the extra detail regarding the problem you're trying to solve may be making the question weaker, not stronger. The core question of 'can I mask my alignment from magical detection' is enough to stand on its own, and I had to catch myself from latching onto the anecdote of why the BBEG's alignment needed hiding. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 24, 2020 at 17:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ I think that the close reason is a bit off. Needs more focus, per Stop Being Evil's comment, is a more correct assessment. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 24, 2020 at 17:39

2 Answers 2


Nystul's Magic Aura works against magic

Nystul's Magic Aura is a second level spell that has the following option (PHB, 263):

Mask. You change the way the target appears to spells and magical effects that detect creature types, such as a paladin’s Divine Sense or the trigger of a symbol spell. You choose a creature type and other spells and magical effects treat the target as if it were a creature of that type or of that alignment.

This option explicitly states you can make a creature's alignment appear different to magical effects.


I don't think you need to

The only RAW way to detect alignment is via the Sprite, which requires a DC 10 Charisma saving throw. I don't know what stats you gave the dragon, but just give it proficiency in Charisma saves (if it doesn't already) and it can't fail that save.

I think taking a specific in-game action to cover alignment is kinda meta-thinking for a dragon who is falling into evil while thinking they are good, so this solution also helps the players feel less 'shafted' by the DM.

Finally if you run it like this, even if the dragon can't fail the save, roll the dice anyway to not give the full game away to the players. Unless you announce the numeric results instead of just pass / fail in which case you can ignore this part of the answer. 🙃

  • \$\begingroup\$ golf clap for using prociency as a DM tool. Nice answer. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 24, 2020 at 17:41

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