The alignment system for DND 4th edition

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The system of alignments for the 4th (current) edition of Dungeons and Dragons includes five alignments:  Lawful Good, Good, Unaligned, Evil, and Chaotic Evil.  The original edition of DND from the 1970s decade included three alignments:  Lawful, Neutral, and Chaotic.  The 2nd edition of DND (called Advanced Dungeons and Dragons) had nine alignments, Lawful Good, Neutral Good, Chaotic Good, Neutral, Lawful Neutral, Chaotic Neutral, Lawful Evil, Neutral Evil, and Chaotic Evil.  The 2nd edition's alignment system was used by 3rd edition DND as well. 


If someone wants to use an alignment system from an older version of DND for a game that otherwise uses 4th edition rules, use the conversion chart below: 


4th edition                          2nd/3rd edition                                      original edition


Lawful Good                        Lawful Good                                            Lawful


Good                                   Neutral or Chaotic Good                          Lawful


Unaligned                            Lawful, True, or Chaotic Neutral              Neutral                                                                                             


Evil                                       Lawful or Neutral Evil                               Chaotic


Chaotic Evil                           Chaotic Evil                                              Chaotic


                                                                                                                                   

I use this system already, and yet, my friends still complain about the 4e alignment system.

Unaligned really isn't the same as neutral...i think in 1e and 2e, there were creatures that had a NIL or something similar, which is a better fit, for their alignment but not sure if there were any optional rules in the DMG for players to do that...


We added Neutral for our games, for someone that wants a very interestng roleplaying perspective...


Sanjay

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We just threw out the entire alignment system, because to us it's just a waste of space.  We use real character personalities rather than cookie cutter cutouts which is what you get with alignment.

The problem that I have with 4th edition alignment is that LG and G don't match like they should. In 4th edition alignment, Lawful Good is a subset of Good. Being LG fulfills being G for all requirements and prequisites. But the descriptions of Lawful Good and Good seem to be at odds.


I don't have my PHB with me right now, but I remember that LG was described with strong emphasis on structure, laws, rules, etc (the typical 2nd and 3rd editions of LG).


But G (in 4e) is described as valuing freedom which seems to be at odds with LG, which is part of the realm of Good. Good (in 4e) is described similar to old editions CG (which would be at odds with LG).


So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.


But maybe I need to re-read my 4e PHB.


The problem that I have with 4th edition alignment is that LG and G don't match like they should. In 4th edition alignment, Lawful Good is a subset of Good. Being LG fulfills being G for all requirements and prequisites. But the descriptions of Lawful Good and Good seem to be at odds.


I don't have my PHB with me right now, but I remember that LG was described with strong emphasis on structure, laws, rules, etc (the typical 2nd and 3rd editions of LG).


But G (in 4e) is described as valuing freedom which seems to be at odds with LG, which is part of the realm of Good. Good (in 4e) is described similar to old editions CG (which would be at odds with LG).


So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.


But maybe I need to re-read my 4e PHB.




Maybe they just wanted to drop "chaotic" from the alignment name, so that players wouldn't feel that they have free reign to do whatever they want, as long as the outcome is positive in some way or another---for example, the party's chaotic good rogue saying, "It's perfectly justifiable to steal all the town's gold; we'll use it to buy ourselves better equipment in order to better defend the town".


Maybe they just wanted to drop "chaotic" from the alignment name, so that players wouldn't feel that they have free reign to do whatever they want, as long as the outcome is positive in some way or another---for example, the party's chaotic good rogue saying, "It's perfectly justifiable to steal all the town's gold; we'll use it to buy ourselves better equipment in order to better defend the town".





But its not just the naming convention. In 4e, LG is a subset of G. LG is described as the "old" LG. G should encompass LG, but it is described pretty much as the "old" chaotic good. If they just wanted G to be the generic CG without the "chaos", then LG should not be part of it.

From my reading of the descriptions, G is a translation of the "old" chaotic good, but it is supposed to be compatible and encompassing of LG. That is my issue with 4e alignment.

It's much, much easier to make alignment just...go away.


Without mechanical effects(ie, penalties), it's just a bogus description.  And not even a good one at that.  Much easier to let it die, and make your character based on a personality, not a label.

Alignment is a totally different beast in 4e than it was in 3.


In 3rd edition, alignment was a tool primarily for the player to describe your intended ideals and beliefs for your character.  The characters had an alignment whethere they wanted one or not, and they were not necessarily aware of them.  Furhter, a character could easily believe he was lawful good while actually being lawful evil, or vice-versa if he has low self-esteem.


In 4e, a character only has alignment if he declares an allegiance to one of these cosmic forces.  An unaligned character can be any of the 3rd edition alignments, as can a 4e lawful good character.


Since one describes the character from the point of view of the player, and one describes the character from his own perspective, you can easily use both alignment systems right alongside each other.  3.5's system describes the way the character actually behaves and 4e's describes the way he sees himself.

People still use alignment......really?


 


How about alingment languages?

Not liking the new forums.

 

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William - we did the same thing many years ago in 3.XE.


basically what 4E unaligned is..it's a real life alignment.  People do what benefits them, their lifestyle, their religious beliefs (if any), etc, and generally, this also means caring for friends, etc but as u get slowly away from your immediate friends/family...care, etc goes down. 


You may be sad someone in Africa is starving and may donate if you can afford to, but it doesn't directly affect your life for MOST people. 


This is what we consider unaligned. 


However, I give players the option, if they want to play someone following a more strict code or someone who truly has a very rigid set of beliefs (which are explained via their backstory they write up), go for it...


So we still use all 9 axis alignments with unaligned (ie. real life alignment) thrown into the mix.  However, we also play that your god, etc and background can affect alignment.  An orc who kills someone may be considered evil by a town, but to the orc..he's not evil...the human may have been invading his home to kill him.  THe orc infact may be very non-violent for the most part and was defending himself.    Stuff like this gets taken into account, but laws/beleiefs of the region the  player may be travellingin can cause consequences if you act on your belief, which may be different than the majority (ie. kill someone in a friendly duel, since that is what your culture does, and the 'law' will come after you).


In the end..it worked much better than just having a rigid alignment system...also players seem to be more naturally into their characters this way.  I think that's why 4E added unaligned... a welcome official change IMHO.


Regards,


Sanjay

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If someone wants to use an alignment system from an older version of DND for a game that otherwise uses 4th edition rules, use the conversion chart below: 


4th edition                          2nd/3rd edition                                      original edition


Lawful Good                        Lawful Good                                            Lawful


Good                                   Neutral or Chaotic Good                          Lawful


Unaligned                            Lawful, True, or Chaotic Neutral              Neutral                                                                                             


Evil                                       Lawful or Neutral Evil                               Chaotic


Chaotic Evil                           Chaotic Evil                                              Chaotic


                                                                                                                                   




This seems like alot of wasted effort to me.  Because if you're already familiar with the older alignment systems & want to keep using them, then you can cut out this redundant step & ..... (gasp!)just keep using them!  I know, shocking.

Seriously, all alignment does is create debates over alignment instead of the actual character's personalities.


The problem that I have with 4th edition alignment is that LG and G don't match like they should. In 4th edition alignment, Lawful Good is a subset of Good. Being LG fulfills being G for all requirements and prequisites. But the descriptions of Lawful Good and Good seem to be at odds.


I don't have my PHB with me right now, but I remember that LG was described with strong emphasis on structure, laws, rules, etc (the typical 2nd and 3rd editions of LG).


But G (in 4e) is described as valuing freedom which seems to be at odds with LG, which is part of the realm of Good. Good (in 4e) is described similar to old editions CG (which would be at odds with LG).


So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.


But maybe I need to re-read my 4e PHB.





As far as I can tell LG is only part of Good as far as effects on a character or Magic Items are concerned.  In the same way CE is Evil as far as effects on a character or Magic Items are concerned.

Basically if something says "Effects Good/Evil" it will effect LG and Good Characters or CE and Evil Characters.  Other then that they aren't connected.


I think this is one of the 'it's different so it must be wrong' elements.  With a healthy dose of 'didn't read it' or 'didn't read it more then once'.


People still use alignment......really?


 


How about alingment languages?




Ha!!  I forgot about alignment languages.  Oh, the good old days.. :~)


We just threw out the entire alignment system, because to us it's just a waste of space.  We use real character personalities rather than cookie cutter cutouts which is what you get with alignment.




That's what I did.

Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.

Alignment is, now, what I've always used it for.  Just another descriptor to help with roleplaying the character.  By divorcing it from any mechanics it can used or discarded as you wish.  Personally, I never had any problems with it even when it had mechanics tied to it.

People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. --George Orwell There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people. --Howard Zinn He who fights with monsters must take care lest he thereby become a monster. --Friedrich Nietzsche Devil\'s Brigade

Alignment has never been an issue in the games I play in or run.  When they had mechanical uses, it was fun, chaotic good and lawful evil were fun, as were the neutral trinity.


4e alignment is just an overview of a personality type. Instead of listing twelve seperate personality traits explaining what a good person or evil bastard you are, you can just put down a word or two and it sums it up.


Plus, many D&D fans enjoy alignment. Like myself and many of my friends. It doesn't get in our way of playing the game the way we want and it doesn't scare us, as it never has.


Nothing was wrong with alignment, only with how players and DM's handled it. Alignment in 4e was made far more friendly, yet people still complain about it. When wotc finally removes alignment completely, in a future edition, people will still complain about it. Tongue out

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I've never understood all this difficulty with alignment.


Some hate it, and believe that it must be destroyed. (Largely the same people that want "variety" which really translates to "whatever I want in the game" = "variety".) They call it a straight jacket and treat it with great disdain.


They feel it is a moral imperative to jump on to every thread about alignment (presumably by people who enjoy the idea of alignment) and denounce it so that their very important voices might be heard.


Beware people who want "Options" in this game especially if they don't like your "Options".  

Alignment still plays a heavy role in establishing what type of game you are running and want to play. I use it as a deceleration of what kind of behavior I expect in a game, and I assume that the alignment a person puts down represents the type of game they want to play. When they are not matching, I keenly tell them that this game might not be suited for them.


I don't mind people wanting to play in the grey area, but if they just want to delve in how far they can go into darkness without being caught, there's other games they can do that in.

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We just threw out the entire alignment system, because to us it's just a waste of space.  We use real character personalities rather than cookie cutter cutouts which is what you get with alignment.




I disagree.  I have used alignment for years and have developed characters with more personality than a cookie cutter.  I think the most important thing about alignment in 4e, is that it is a commitment.  A good player is committed to good, and a evil character is dedicated evil.  If your PC has no real ethical/ moral commitment (or one that does not fit the 5 in 4e or the 3 t0 9 in previous editons),  then your PC is unaligned.   Regardless using alignment to define your Pc moral/ ehtical commitment does not define the Pcs personality.  For example, the grumpy dour dwarf may be Lawful Evil Hell bent on dominating the world, mumbling and grumbling but always plotting; or the grumpy dour dwarf may be lawful good donating a large portion of his income to those "ungrateful, ragg a muffin, no good, thankless orphans,"

Threw out alignment as well (though my players can write anything they want in their alignment box, be it "Good" "Chaotic Neutral" or "Pie") My NPCs, monsters and even deities don't have an alignment; they have desires, goals and banes. Alignment works well in simple HacknSlash, but not in Political Intrigues for my games (my favorite gameplay type, though I like cinematic combat a lot as well)


Sure, Bahamut stands for Protection, Justice and Nobility. Sounds like his clergy are swell guys, but even Protection and Justice can be taken too far.


Sure, Bane stands for War and Conquest. Sounds like a bunch of bastards that follow him. But in a world of D&D, especially in a world of PoL, War and Conquest is very much a mean to accomplish something altruistic sometimes.

hmm just tomake things a bit clearer...


alignment are notmeant tobe used as a toll for the DM to restric the player,  they are a toll FOR THE PLAYER, tobe able to describe better it`s char and act acordly to how he defined him.


it was to be expected t find that not all old alignment are compatible with 4E, for the simple fact that that there is less ones, so you had to compress, simplify or scrap some...


about the 4E "G" description, that`s a problem, is legal or is chaotic or is neither, butis not clear, and can not reallyhelp the player define it`s char, yea maybe in 4E alignment ar enothing but decoration and the idea is for the player not to think aboutdefining its char and just allow todo wathever they want... it`s more fun that way right ... sadly I play a RP game to roleplay, and that means definign my char, and acting acordly to it, even if it goes against my desires, or I have outside information...


We just threw out the entire alignment system, because to us it's just a waste of space.  We use real character personalities rather than cookie cutter cutouts which is what you get with alignment.




Your character's alignment is just another keyword used to quantify his personality. Labeling your character "good" or "evil" is no more cookie-cutter than labeling him "humorless," "trustworthy," "talkative" or whatever else. The alignment part is only his personality as it concerns the welfare of others.


Threw out alignment as well (though my players can write anything they want in their alignment box, be it "Good" "Chaotic Neutral" or "Pie") My NPCs, monsters and even deities don't have an alignment; they have desires, goals and banes. Alignment works well in simple HacknSlash, but not in Political Intrigues for my games (my favorite gameplay type, though I like cinematic combat a lot as well)


Sure, Bahamut stands for Protection, Justice and Nobility. Sounds like his clergy are swell guys, but even Protection and Justice can be taken too far.


Sure, Bane stands for War and Conquest. Sounds like a bunch of bastards that follow him. But in a world of D&D, especially in a world of PoL, War and Conquest is very much a mean to accomplish something altruistic sometimes.





My thoughts exactly.  No god in the dnd world is truly good, even if they are their followers might not be.  Without alignment it causes you to really think about the characters personality a bit more, what they want and who they are.  I love my slightly confused tiefling warlock whose torn between doing the right thing, or getting revenge.  She has one goal to save the city she was born and fulfill her oath, nothing else matters at all not the lives of her companions, and not anything else.  There was one moment where she went to jail, the only reason she didnt just teleport out and burn the entire place to the ground is because she trusted the cleric when he said he would make sure she got out.  I would not be able to really picture her as any one of the alignments, to me they were too constraining.

I find the new alignment system reminds me very much of the alignment system in, of all things, the Palladium game system.  In that system alignment is set up thusly:


Good: Principled and Scrupulous


Selfish: Unprincipled and Anarchist


Evil: Miscreant, Aberrant and Diabolic


Overall, they line up with the ideas in the new alignment system.


Lawful Good=Principled


Good=Scrupulous


Unaligned=Unprincipled


Evil=Miscreant


Chaotic Evil=Diabolic


Anarchist is a more extreme version of the selfish alignment and a category that many of the detractors of alignment have their characters fall into.  At least this is what I find in my impressions from their short descriptions.


Aberrant is very much like the the Lawful Evil alignment.  They keep their word and can be honorable, but the catch is that they have to feel that you are worthy of such honor.  This is the other alignment that I think many detractors' characters fall into, from my own impressions.


Overall, though, I've never seen alignment as anything more than just another descriptor like hair colour, race or even personality quirks.

People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. --George Orwell There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people. --Howard Zinn He who fights with monsters must take care lest he thereby become a monster. --Friedrich Nietzsche Devil\'s Brigade


As far as I can tell LG is only part of Good as far as effects on a character or Magic Items are concerned.  In the same way CE is Evil as far as effects on a character or Magic Items are concerned.


Basically if something says "Effects Good/Evil" it will effect LG and Good Characters or CE and Evil Characters.  Other then that they aren't connected.


I think this is one of the 'it's different so it must be wrong' elements.  With a healthy dose of 'didn't read it' or 'didn't read it more then once'.





(You quoted me but credited someone else.)

If a character counts as "Good" for certain requirements, why would you not expect that character to be included in the description of "Good". If you compare the "Lawful Good" and "Good" descriptions, they share many attributes, but differ significantly in others. If "Lawful Good" counts as "Good", then it only seems to make sense that it'd be a subset of "Good". Same with "Chaotic Evil" and "Evil".


They are connected via the game mechanisms (mainly "Lawful Good" = "Good" while "Good" doesn't not necessarily equals "Lawful Good") so why shouldn't the definitions align to give a better working model?


Also, I did read the entries on alignment (and more than once). I did not have my books with me and I read them a while ago so I left room for if I was mistaken about the descriptions of the alignments.


The system of alignments for the 4th (current) edition of Dungeons and Dragons includes five alignments:  Lawful Good, Good, Unaligned, Evil, and Chaotic Evil.  The original edition of DND from the 1970s decade included three alignments:  Lawful, Neutral, and Chaotic.  The 2nd edition of DND (called Advanced Dungeons and Dragons) had nine alignments...




Actually, the original white box (I have an original here) had the three alignments you mentioned but good and evil and which creatures and classes were likely to be which was used everywhere. You had to be good to be a "Paladin" type fighter as a player and so you technically had all 9 even then. This edition was referred to as OD&D or Original Dungeons and Dragons.


It was superseded by both the Basic edition of Dungeons and Dragons which added all 9 alignments and Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (or 1st edition) which did the same.  


It wouldn't be wrong for your OD&D character to say he was Lawful and Good. And so until 4th edition you pretty much had 9 alignments. I had characters in that era and we often made the distinction between a Neutral character who was good and a Neutral character who was evil.


It came as no surprise to myself or the people I played with when this was codified in the 1st edition in a more clear fashion.


Anyway. I hope that clarifies a bit.

still can not understand how people can take somethign mean to help you define your char as a stright jacket...


still can not understand how people can take somethign mean to help you define your char as a stright jacket...




Some people do.  I have had players determine their every action by looking at their alignment ("Ah, I'm Neutral Good, I can't do that ...") without realizing that actions determine alignment, not the other way around.

Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.

Without mechanical effects(ie, penalties), it's just a bogus description.  And not even a good one at that.  Much easier to let it die, and make your character based on a personality, not a label.



Sorry DC, not to pick on you, but yours was handy.  For any that spout that alignment has no mechanical effect, that is false.  Alignment is a property like any other and can be incorporated into mechanics like any other... for example, a weapon with the property: Property: On a critical hit you deal +6d8 damage instead of +6d6 against evil creatures.

That really looks like a mechanical effect to me.

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still can not understand how people can take somethign mean to help you define your char as a stright jacket...




Some people do.  I have had players determine their every action by looking at their alignment ("Ah, I'm Neutral Good, I can't do that ...") without realizing that actions determine alignment, not the other way around.




facepalm


I think you are confusing things...


That player defined it`s character upon creation, is like defining, my char is 4 feets tall, now in game he want toreach over the fridge,the player looks at his CHARACTER heigh ("Ah, I'm 4 feet tall, I can't do that ...").


that is called roleplaying, defining a character and then playing it as defined, the idea when you define a character alignment orpersonality is to roleplay it, so notdoing an action because the character asdefinedwould notdoit, is called GOOD ROLEPLAYING, contrary to bad roleplaying where you define a character as "good" and who does ntolike to kill, killing and attacking everithing in front of him without asking why or having a very good reason.


yesa character can take an action contrary to it`s alignment but ussually will have a good reason for it.


also by your definition race is also a straightjacket, hell I m a halfing, can not reach!

Personality IS a label.

So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.

"Sub-set" is a misnomer.

Lawful Good is 3e's Exalted, representing the most virtuous people, someone like the Bhudda, Superman, or Andrew Wiggin belongs here.
Good is 3e's entire Good alignment spectrum, someone like Sir Baden Powel, Daredevil, or Bean belongs here.
Unaligned is for people who disaccociate themselves from alignment, most people fall into this category.
Evil is 3e's entire Evil alignment spectrum, someone like Jack the Ripper, the Kingpin, or Peter Wiggin I.
Chaotic Evil is 3e's Vile, representing the most selfish sadists, someone like Adolf Hitler, Red Skull, or Achille.


Overall, though, I've never seen alignment as anything more than just another descriptor like hair colour, race or even personality quirks.

That's all morals are; personality quirks.  Even people who profess to believe in the same sort of "right to life" will disagree over what it means.
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Rule that I would change: 204.1b
204.1b Some effects change an object’s card type, supertype, or subtype but specify that the object retains a prior card type, supertype, or subtype. In such cases, all the object’s prior card types, supertypes, and subtypes are retained. This rule applies to effects that use the phrase “in addition to its types” or that state that something is “still a [card type].” Some effects state that an object becomes an “artifact creature”; these effects also allow the object to retain all of its prior card types and subtypes.
"Eight Edition Rules Update" We eventually decided not to change this template, because players are used to “becomes an artifact creature,” and like it much better.
Players were used to Combat on the Stack, but you got rid of that because it was unintuitive. The only phrase needed is "in addition to its types"; the others are misleading and unintuitive.

Dude, jack the ripper is chaotic evil, big time.

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Dude, jack the ripper is chaotic evil, big time.

It is not established that the unsub known as Jack the Ripper was intending to alter the entire social dynamic of society.  It is only established that he felt a certain element of society needed to be removed if possible, and he was unwilling to risk his own well-being to further that goal.

Therefore, he lacks the scope needed for being an exemplar of Chaos, in addition to the dedication to his own goals to be an exemplar of total Villainy.  Instead, he merely committed many murders without being caught.  An exemplar of Evil, sure, but of Vile Deeds?  Not at all.

D&D 4E Herald and M:tG Rules Advisor I expect posters to follow the Code of Conduct, use Basic Etiquette, and avoid Poor Logic. If you don't follow these guidelines, I consider you to be disrespectful to everyone on these forums. If you respond to me without following these guidelines, I consider it a personal attack. I grew up in a bilingual household, which means I am familiar with the difficulties in adopting a different vocabulary and grammar. That doesn't bother me. Persistent use of bad capitalization, affirming the consequent, and flaming bother me a great deal.
Rule that I would change: 204.1b
204.1b Some effects change an object’s card type, supertype, or subtype but specify that the object retains a prior card type, supertype, or subtype. In such cases, all the object’s prior card types, supertypes, and subtypes are retained. This rule applies to effects that use the phrase “in addition to its types” or that state that something is “still a [card type].” Some effects state that an object becomes an “artifact creature”; these effects also allow the object to retain all of its prior card types and subtypes.
"Eight Edition Rules Update" We eventually decided not to change this template, because players are used to “becomes an artifact creature,” and like it much better.
Players were used to Combat on the Stack, but you got rid of that because it was unintuitive. The only phrase needed is "in addition to its types"; the others are misleading and unintuitive.


So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.

"Sub-set" is a misnomer.

Lawful Good is 3e's Exalted, representing the most virtuous people, someone like the Bhudda, Superman, or Andrew Wiggin belongs here.
Good is 3e's entire Good alignment spectrum, someone like Sir Baden Powel, Daredevil, or Bean belongs here.
Unaligned is for people who disaccociate themselves from alignment, most people fall into this category.
Evil is 3e's entire Evil alignment spectrum, someone like Jack the Ripper, the Kingpin, or Peter Wiggin I.
Chaotic Evil is 3e's Vile, representing the most selfish sadists, someone like Adolf Hitler, Red Skull, or Achille.


Overall, though, I've never seen alignment as anything more than just another descriptor like hair colour, race or even personality quirks.

That's all morals are; personality quirks.  Even people who profess to believe in the same sort of "right to life" will disagree over what it means.



 


so where do legal neutral fall into? , they are not good nor bad, they are not unaligned either...


also is hard toput legal evil and neutral evil in the same evil...


just concede on it, youcan move from 9 alignments to 6 or 4 or 3, todo so you must make simplifications, basically a system that`s not as granular as itwas, it`sjust like that, and doingso some things previsuly where well defined will no longer be, that`s reality, say wathever you wantit wont change.


and alignment is as much as a label, as it`s your character skin color, his gender, etc... is a definition, as someone that at least has tried towrithe some stories, know isimportant to define a character andstick to that to keep the coherency, and many times the char might not behave as I want to, but that`s just how it is...


 



So if pay heavy attention to the descriptions in the PHB, it seems that LG wouldn't really fit with G even though it is part of a subset. I think this problem arose from trying to describe (2-3e) Lawful Good as (4e) LG and wanting (2-3e) CG/NG to fit into (4e) G. But the description seems to imply that G in 4e is of a more chaotic (2-3e terms) nature.

"Sub-set" is a misnomer.

Lawful Good is 3e's Exalted, representing the most virtuous people, someone like the Bhudda, Superman, or Andrew Wiggin belongs here.
Good is 3e's entire Good alignment spectrum, someone like Sir Baden Powel, Daredevil, or Bean belongs here.
Unaligned is for people who disaccociate themselves from alignment, most people fall into this category.
Evil is 3e's entire Evil alignment spectrum, someone like Jack the Ripper, the Kingpin, or Peter Wiggin I.
Chaotic Evil is 3e's Vile, representing the most selfish sadists, someone like Adolf Hitler, Red Skull, or Achille.


Overall, though, I've never seen alignment as anything more than just another descriptor like hair colour, race or even personality quirks.

That's all morals are; personality quirks.  Even people who profess to believe in the same sort of "right to life" will disagree over what it means.



 


so where do legal neutral fall into? , they are not good nor bad, they are not unaligned either...


also is hard toput legal evil and neutral evil in the same evil...


just concede on it, youcan move from 9 alignments to 6 or 4 or 3, todo so you must make simplifications, basically a system that`s not as granular as itwas, it`sjust like that, and doingso some things previsuly where well defined will no longer be, that`s reality, say wathever you wantit wont change.


and alignment is as much as a label, as it`s your character skin color, his gender, etc... is a definition, as someone that at least has tried towrithe some stories, know isimportant to define a character andstick to that to keep the coherency, and many times the char might not behave as I want to, but that`s just how it is...


 




OR YOU make real characters.  I'm sorry but alignment is a limiter I dont need a stupid descriptor to tell me how to play my character.  Sometimes my character will do good things sometimes not.  My character has goals and motives and cannot be easily identified by any of the previous nine alignments, because she could fit into any and all of them except evil, even then she can be evil.  Alignment is a bad idea.  the one time I was in a game that took it seriously it was bad.

I don't care much for the rest of the discussion because, well, I don't care to have alignment in any of my games - but this!



and alignment is as much as a label, as it`s your character skin color, his gender, etc... is a definition, as someone that at least has tried towrithe some stories, know isimportant to define a character andstick to that to keep the coherency, and many times the char might not behave as I want to, but that`s just how it is...




I don't understand how people are drawing a comparison between Alignment and physical characteristics.  I don't understand how they're saying personality traits and motivations should be as static as skin color or gender.


That, to me, is the exact wrong way to approach alignment.  Descriptive?  Yes.  But not unchanging.  Even 3.5 makes that point in the SRD.


My problems with alignment were with players/GMs who didn't understand that - who thought alignment should dictate your actions - should restrict them.  That is the kind of attitude that made me start completely ignoring alignment.


The realization that, even as a descriptive tool, it's not very good - that is what finalized my abandonment of them.  Alignments are merely shorthand for some vague philosophical leanings of the character - I'd rather write a single sentence describing some real, concrete, motivations for any given NPC.  I'd rather write a background, and create a personality for a PC - and I'd rather my players did the same, rather than saying "I'll be Lawful Neutral, I think."


I'm willing to tolerate this alignment system because of that big, important "Unaligned."  I think it actually makes the system more of a helpful option, than something players are likely to take for granted.  That "Good" alignment means more when you had a choice to just not pick - when you're not being tossed into an alignment, whether you want to or not.

Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)


OR YOU make real characters.  I'm sorry but alignment is a limiter I dont need a stupid descriptor to tell me how to play my character.  Sometimes my character will do good things sometimes not.  My character has goals and motives and cannot be easily identified by any of the previous nine alignments, because she could fit into any and all of them except evil, even then she can be evil.  Alignment is a bad idea.  the one time I was in a game that took it seriously it was bad.




Yes and I have also seen this I-do-what-fits-my-personality talk used to justify the most insane set of contradictory behavior simple because the player wants to burn the town down one minute because he was insulted and in the next wants people to see him as good hero of the people.


I have seen it work both ways. A mature fleshed out character with a well defined personality can be played without an alignment. I have seen people do it and enjoyed playing with them.


I have also seen where alignment can end arguments because someone within a group is playing the character one way one week and a different way the next week that makes no sense and is completely out of character. Alignments can help define what a character's range of actions are.


It goes back to my English professor telling me something I am sure many have heard. You can break the rules to make a master piece but first you have to master the rules to know what your breaking and how to do it without ruining the whole thing.



OR YOU make real characters.  I'm sorry but alignment is a limiter I dont need a stupid descriptor to tell me how to play my character.  Sometimes my character will do good things sometimes not.  My character has goals and motives and cannot be easily identified by any of the previous nine alignments, because she could fit into any and all of them except evil, even then she can be evil.  Alignment is a bad idea.  the one time I was in a game that took it seriously it was bad.




Yes and I have also seen this I-do-what-fits-my-personality talk used to justify the most insane set of contradictory behavior simple because the player wants to burn the town down one minute because he was insulted and in the next wants people to see him as good hero of the people.


I have seen it work both ways. A mature fleshed out character with a well defined personality can be played without an alignment. I have seen people do it and enjoyed playing with them.


I have also seen where alignment can end arguments because someone within a group is playing the character one way one week and a different way the next week that makes no sense and is completely out of character. Alignments can help define what a character's range of actions are.


...




Amen brother, amen.  I never felt I was in a straight jacket using alignment as a guide for my characters moral ethical conviction.  I have always used it as a guide.  Stop trying to make my guide a straight jacket, it upsets meFrown