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D&D 5E Should classes retain traditional alignment restrictions in 5E?

Which classes in 5E should retain alignment restrictions?

  • Assassin

    Votes: 51 31.9%
  • Bard

    Votes: 10 6.3%
  • Barbarian

    Votes: 27 16.9%
  • Druid

    Votes: 32 20.0%
  • Monk

    Votes: 35 21.9%
  • Ranger

    Votes: 15 9.4%
  • Paladin

    Votes: 67 41.9%
  • Warlock

    Votes: 19 11.9%
  • All classes should have alignment restrictions

    Votes: 6 3.8%
  • No classes should have alignment restrictions

    Votes: 88 55.0%
  • Other, please explain

    Votes: 9 5.6%

Cyberzombie

Explorer
If you are going to have the paladin and monk as they have been done in the past, they have to be LG and lawful respectively. It's part of what they are. Monk would be easier to change, but if you make a paladin that isn't LG, it's not really a paladin any more. A holy warrior class is arguably more useful than a paladin, but it's not a paladin any more.

The alignment restriction on assassins is dumb and hypocritical, though. What is the main thing adventurers do? Kill people and steal their stuff. Often for a bounty, which is morally EXACTLY what assassins do. And assassins are usually a lot more discriminating in who they kill than adventurers are. So if anyone is the bad guy here...
 

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Ahnehnois

First Post
I guess the question then is whether it makes sense to have a "paladin" class or a knight/champion/holy warrior and call the LG version a paladin.
 


Trolls

First Post
Alignment is just one piece of character creation, and it can interpreted many different ways. I think the restrictions are good guidelines. But I do disagree with your statement about my intention to make other folks' toons for them. I don't understand how you arrived at that conclusion.

I said in short:The alignment restrictions seem to make sense to me. I would like to see them stay.

And you read: You just want to make peoples characters for them.

I don't get your reply. If you don't agree with the position I have offered thats cool. Then we could have a discussion, if you will. But you don't need to make false assertions of my intentions to have this discussion. But if thats what gets your rocks off then go right ahead.

love,

malkav

I understand harlokin's point, even if it is an exaggeration.

Alignment restrictions stop some people from playing the character they want to play, it's a simple as that. If you're imposing your view on how certain classes should behave on other people, you're dictating to them that only certain archetypes are available, and are not in fact limited only by your imagination.

Granted, you're not exactly making people's characters for them, but if someone comes to your table with a great idea for a drunken master monk who clearly has nothing to do with discipline and you tell him to pick another character because monks must be lawful, it's very close to the same thing.

There's nothing wrong with providing alignment suggestions. As you say, many of them make a certain amount of sense. In fact that's probably a good thing, particularly for new players. But as soon as you start enforcing those suggestions you're cutting off perfectly valid character ideas for no good reason.
 

Traken

First Post
Why not throw some other restrictions on class?

Elves can't be fighters. Dwarves can't be druids. All wizards must be tall and British. All assassins must kill a child every week. Paladins must give away all their stuff to good-aligned people. Halflings can't wear shoes and must smoke pipes. Only male players may play a barbarian character.

These make about as much sense as having alignment restrictions on class. If you are hung up on "Paladins must be good" then I suppose we can change the name of the class.

We now have the crusader/holy warrior/templar class. Take that, throw one of those new-fangled themes on it depending on your deity or cause. Then call your character whatever you want.
 

LurkAway

First Post
Can someone kindly explain the reason(s) for why playing a non-lawful Paladin? Is it because you disagree with the story of a Paladin that is a paragon of honor and cannot fluff/customize a Cleric to match your vision of a holy warrior, or you're playing the Paladin for mechanical/tactical reasons and don't want story-based constraints, or you fully intend to play the Paladin lawfully in the story but are worried about the mechanical instrusion of Law alignment rules, or something else?
 

harlokin

First Post
Can someone kindly explain the reason(s) for why playing a non-lawful Paladin? Is it because you disagree with the story of a Paladin that is a paragon of honor and cannot fluff/customize a Cleric to match your vision of a holy warrior,

Basically this.

A Paladin for many players is seen as a holy Warrior, who is (commonly) independent of religious authorities. The Sir Galahad version is perfectly valid to those players, but it is not the only way they conceive of Paladins.

Clerics are subtly different, and often don't quite hit the right spot; more of a Caster.

Hope this makes some sense.
 

Traken

First Post
Can someone kindly explain the reason(s) for why playing a non-lawful Paladin? Is it because you disagree with the story of a Paladin that is a paragon of honor and cannot fluff/customize a Cleric to match your vision of a holy warrior, or you're playing the Paladin for mechanical/tactical reasons and don't want story-based constraints, or you fully intend to play the Paladin lawfully in the story but are worried about the mechanical instrusion of Law alignment rules, or something else?

Can you explain the reason(s) people are against having non-lawful-good Paladins? To me, it just doesn't make sense for either the story or the mechanics to be tied to a single alignment.

The idea behind the (3.5, at least) Paladin is a holy knight that derives his power from his deity or his cause. He adheres to a strict code set forth by his deity or cause or else he loses his powers. These powers typically include being able to hunt down (detect evil), fend off (divine grace), and destroy (smite evil, turn undead) enemies of his deity or cause. There is also some facility to heal their allies (lay on hands). Oh, they also usually wear really heavy armor and for some reason learn to ride animals really well.

Is there really anything in there that can't be easily generalized so that anyone of any alignment, deity, or cause can use this class?
 

LurkAway

First Post
A Paladin for many players is seen as a holy Warrior, who is (commonly) independent of religious authorities. The Sir Galahad version is perfectly valid to those players, but it is not the only way they conceive of Paladins.

Clerics are subtly different, and often don't quite hit the right spot; more of a Caster.

Hope this makes some sense.
Yes, that makes sense.

What I find interesting is that the core classes are very generic and flexible and don't have a lot of conceptual baggage. If you pick a fighter, there aren't a lot of players who would complain that you're not a fighter.

The advanced classes start to pigeonhole character concepts, and that's when you run into trouble, with paladins, assassins, etc. when two guys with different concepts of a paladin don't see eye to eye.

I think that when previous editions put an alignment restriction on a class, it was using mechanics to draw a line in the sand and state "This is what this class concept means". The disadvantage is that it's inflexible. The advantange is that it puts everyone on the same page.

Kinda like saying: This is a vampire class. Your skin does not sparkle in the sunlight. If you want a sparkling vampire, get the Twilight module. (I don't mean to be cheeky, I'm just picking an example of a vampire meaning different things to different people and having to pick one concept over another).

I think it's very important to put everyone on the same page, by either defining what is the paladin and why it has a Lawful alignment restriction, or forget the alignment restriction and loosen up the character concept so that everyone can read Paladin and see 2+ ways of defining it. And right now, with all the editions, we don't have that.
 

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