D&D General So how about alignment, eh?

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Whizbang Dustyboots

100% that gnome
The oWoD system of nature/demeanor. You get a long list of personality archetypes. Pick one as how you mostly present yourself. The other is your true nature, which is probably at least slightly different. You regain resources from acting in accordance with your nature. (Inspiration would be the way to do this with 5E.)

Cosmic Law, Chaos, Good, Evil and those weird Neutral dorks should be factions one can align with.

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Whizbang Dustyboots

100% that gnome
Don't use it. Haven't for decades. Makes no significant difference in the game as far as I can tell. You have to tweak a few spells and items.

And it makes character creation really weird. I can't imagine asking my creative writing students to start by "imagining whether this character is lawful evil or chaotic good."
Yeah, 5E has it right here. There are some Outer Planes beings where it matters, but otherwise, it only comes up if a group wants it to.


A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I like the 9. But I've been using an article that draws upon real world cross-cultural psychology that gives a more "realistic" philosophy for each of the 9 alignments. I mean, ultimately, it is just a game mechanic, but in many of my campaigns it is a meaningful mechanic, not just fluff and I like to deepen it a bit as part of world building. Anyway the link to the article I mentioned ("Are There 'Real Alignments'?") can be found here:



I prefer 5e's approach with the classic 9, but it's just a descriptor no more or less important than any other.

But I've always viewed alignment as just helping me understand how a creature views the world. It's not a strightjacket, no one adheres to their alignment, people don't think in terms of alignment.

So someone that's lawful views the world as a clockwork mechanism and thinks laws and rules are important for a functioning society, although they may still disagree with specific laws. Someone that's chaotic doesn't think there's a natural order other than what we impose on it. Laws and structures may be useful as long as people still have freedom and, ideally, a voice in decisions.

So it can be useful, especially for NPCs and monster who are bit players. But I don't know or care what the alignment of my player's PCs are. For my own? It helps a bit as one aspect of their personality.


I would be okay if a future version of D&D didn't have it but it's expected so we're stuck with alignment or so it seems
It'll be mostly optional in upcoming releases, like it already is in Monsters of the Multiverse. And then one day, someone will look for it and it won't be there. Sad, really.
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