Alignment is something a player usually decides when creating his or her character. This choice is not set in stone (as characters grow and change over time). The alignment usually describes how the character treats others and how they react in certain situations. It is a generalization of that character's nature and demeanor. There are three different alignment types, each with three different subtypes.
People who choose to be Good often support laws, fight for everyone's good, or vanquish all they see as Evil. Being Good is also considered very selfless, and honor codes are popular with Good people. Their vices are Naivety, Selflessness, and Zealotry.
People of this alignment tend to believe in order and the rule of law. They have high morals and wish to have the rulers of their society to have the same. They believe in order, and for all to be prosperous, everyone should respect the laws by helping each other and fighting all evildoers who would bring down their harmonious society.
Good examples of this alignment are paladins and priests who fight for justice and the rule of law, smiting Evil wherever they find it.
People who fall into this alignment tote the line between Lawful Good and Chaotic Good. Those of neutral Good alignment will agree with some of the laws set in place; however, their morals may occasionally conflict with what the law requires of them. They understand that not all creatures can be "perfect" in the eyes of the law. To survive, they may have to commit acts that may seem Evil to others while being perfectly justified as Good deeds to themselves. They believe that social structure is important to protect weaker people globally and protect them from evildoers through their pursuit of Good.
Good examples of this group would be mages and warriors who seek to keep balance in the world while keeping Evil at bay.
Almost a contradiction in terms, these people tend to have absolutely no regard for social structure or law. They follow their own set of rules to carry out acts of goodness, not relying on the laws and regulations set in place by others to decide what these actions should be. Their lives are guided by their image of what is Good and right, and they have little time for others who see a differing view of the world.
Good examples of this group would break the law or commit acts against the structured government to better the people, e.g., Robin Hood.
The Neutral way of life is for those who are tired of Good and Evil's never-ending conflict and choose to walk their own path as it best suits them. They are often apathetic to anyone, Good or Evil, as long as they are left in peace. Their vices include Apathy and Greed.
People in this group tend to be fanatical about law and order. Still, they do not seem to care if the society is run by a vicious evil dictator working to his own evil ends or a benevolent ruler working for the good of all people. Lawful Neutral people only care about order and structure, wherever they find it, and believe an end to this structure is an end to all. As such, they often consider laws before doing anything. If the balance between Good and Evil falls too heavily to one side, these people may rise against it, though they are much more likely to accept the laws assigned to them.
An example of a Lawful Neutral character would be a meticulous merchant who keeps a tidy inventory and is up-to-date on all regions' trade laws.
People in this group are true followers of balance, usually the balance between Good and Evil forces. Sometimes, these people may simply do nothing in a situation, making them seem aloof or even cold/callous as they refuse to see either Good or Evil in any act. They avoid allying with either camp but will fight to keep the balance in check. More often than not, these people hold little, if any, beliefs at all that they are willing to defend. To them, Good and Evil are more global concepts than ones to be taken at the immediate surroundings' value.
Good examples of this grouping are warriors who devote themselves to seeking balance, rangers who see the balance of nature, and people that simply seek absolute apathy about the world.
People in this group tend to be those who live life to whatever whim comes across them at whatever time. They have no time for balance or order of any kind, nor do they believe in such things. The ideas of Good and Evil do not play a part in their design making at all. This usually results in them confusing others, as they seem to switch sides to whatever takes their fancy at that moment in time.
Good examples of this would be pixies seeking only to enjoy themselves and creatures like trolls and ogres that follow their instincts with little thought.
Evil is the path often chosen for someone who seeks death and destruction as a way of life. To pillage, rob, steal, or even rule unopposed over a group of people just to gain more money or for other reasons of greed. Their vices include Greed, Sadism, and Lust.
People in this group believe that structure brings into power those who deserve to rule over others, simply because they are better for whatever reason, whether powerful warriors, intelligent politicians, or powerful mages. They enjoy a clear distinction between the classes in their society and believe all should know their place and act accordingly. If people suffer because of whatever laws benefit these creatures, that is tough, plain, and simple.
Good examples of this tend to be evil tyrants and kings who enjoy the power and influence lawful existence brings. Vampires also often fall into this class, as they believe strongly in the class distinction between themselves and others. Drow are also a good example of being Lawful Evil for their matriarchy often fulfills this role.
People who follow this philosophy tend to be mostly concerned with their own profit and advancement. If they find a scheme to get money or power, they tend to follow it without considering any legal obligations at all. These people often betray their friends and family to pursue power and influence and protect others and work with others if it is in their own interest to do so. Unlike Chaotic Neutral, being Neutral Evil means you are entirely amoral and do not care what the consequences of your actions are.
These people tend to unscrupulous thieves and bandits who care little for others to pursue their own agenda.
People in this category tend to be motivated simply by personal gain. Complete hedonists who give no thought whatsoever to others. They see something they want, they take it, and kill anyone in the way. More often than not, they believe the strong can do whatever they wish to the weak. Unlike any of the other alignment types, Chaotic Evil people are often power-hungry and tend to see their Evil ways as a means to an end in their pursuit of personal power. They will often incite chaos wherever they are found and are supporters of anarchy.
Examples of this group tend to be barbarian berserkers and sorcerers driven insane by their own powers who do whatever they wish to others depending on their whim at the time.
Originally Written by Ryeanna
Revised by Adrielle (2007)
Submitted by Alexander-This article was originally on Alexander's Hollow Help Page and then later was placed on Alexander and Lionel's joint page.