1
\$\begingroup\$

The alignment of my character is Lawful Neutral Sorcerer, with the spell Form of the Dragon. This spell allows you to transform into either a metallic or chromatic dragon. A metallic dragon's alignment is good while a chromatic dragon's alignment is evil.

On Pazio Alignments, it goes into detail that different actions can cause a change in your characters alignment

Over time, a character might become disillusioned and drift toward a different alignment. This section describes an optional system for tracking incremental changes to a character's alignment.

When a character performs an action that is out of character for his listed alignment, the GM decides whether the action is enough to shift the character's alignment on the appropriate alignment track

What would happen if were to polymorph or transform into a beast who's alignment different from my own?

\$\endgroup\$
5
\$\begingroup\$

No, you retain your original alignment.


Spell mechanics

Not only does the spell itself not mention your alignment changing to match the creature you turn into, but comparing it to the Polymorph line of spells seems to imply that it has no effect on your alignment.

Looking at the Greater Polymorph description:

If the form is that of a dragon, the spell functions as Form of the Dragon I.

So we can infer that the spells are functionally the same, with the exception that Form of the Dragon only permits you to turn into dragons. Polymorph and Greater Polymorph similarly do not mention alignment at all. However, if we look at Baleful Polymorph:

If the spell succeeds, the subject must also make a Will save. If this second save fails, the creature loses its extraordinary, supernatural, and spell-like abilities, loses its ability to cast spells (if it had the ability), and gains the alignment, special abilities, and Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma scores of its new form in place of its own.

(Emphasis mine)

This shows that Baleful Polymorph explicitly does not change the target's alignment unless specific conditions are met--and if the more malicious version of Polymorph can only do so conditionally, there's no reason why Polymorph or Form of the Dragon, intended to be cast on self or allies and able to be dismissed at will, would have any impact on the target's alignment.

Nature of Alignment

Even aside from the implication of similar spells, the alignment listings for creatures aren't meant to be descriptive of every example of that species. They are meant to be templates for the average specimen. This leaves room for GMs to subvert player expectations with civilized orcs, fallen celestials, and the like. When you cast a Polymorph-like spell, you're turning into a version of that creature with your memories, your personality, and your moral values.

Feasibility

Having Polymorph-like spells change alignment would make them fairly restrictive--casters would be limited to creatures with alignments similar enough to their own (and motivations and desires which do not conflict with theirs) that their transformed "self" could be guaranteed to not sabotage the intended goals they had before transforming. This would be an interesting idea for an in-universe rule of magic, but as stated above, the RAW do not seem to support it being the default.

\$\endgroup\$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.