Forums: Helping Hand > Alignment - 4e and everything else

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So seeing as we seem to have come to an agreement on how to handle canon information on infoboxes generally, I thought I might address a more specific point. Specifically, how to handle information from 4e on alignment.

Unlike every other edition of D&D (besides OD&D/BECMI, which doesn't apply to the Realms), 4th edition didn't use the nine-point alignment most of us are familiar with. Instead, in the apparent interest of promoting better roleplaying and fewer "lawful stupid" and "chaotic stupid" shenanigans, the designers of 4th edition reduced the alignment system of D&D to just five points: lawful good, good, chaotic evil, evil, and unaligned.

In 5e, we're back to the nine-point alignment system (with the addition of unaligned, which now has a specific definition than it did in 4e and shares its meaning with "non-aligned" in 1st edition). But the idiosyncracy of 4e's alignment system still applies to creatures that were detailed primarily in 4e or whose alignment changed from 3e to 4e (and back again with 5e) and as a result there's still a question of how to define their alignment on the alignment chart.

Fortunately, I think this is more simple than it at first appears. By WotC's own admission the alignment of "good" represents both freedom (chaotic good) and kindness (neutral good) while "evil" represents both "tyranny" (lawful evil) and "hatred" (neutral evil). Unaligned meanwhile (in 4e's context) means creatures or characters who've taken now stance toward good or evil (law and chaos is also implied, but actually most chaotic neutral and lawful neutral creatures and characters became unaligned in 4e).

So here's my proposal:

Lawful good: Corresponds to lawful good in the nine point system. Pretty self-explanatory.
Good: Corresponds to neutral good under most circumstances. However, if a creature/character was chaotic good in prior (and later) editions, it corresponds to chaotic good.
Unaligned: Neutral under most circumstances. However, if a creature/character was lawful neutral or chaotic neutral in prior (and later) editions, it corresponds to those alignments. Additionally, non-sapients might correspond to the 5e alignment unaligned / 1e alignment non-aligned.
Evil: Neutral evil under most circumstances. However, if a creature/character was lawful evil in prior (and later) editions, it corresponds to lawful evil.
Chaotic evil: Corresponds to chaotic evil in the nine point system. Pretty self-explanatory.

Let me know what you guys think. I feel this works pretty well but obviously this is a pretty big decision to make, since it affects all 4e material.

Niirfa-sa (talk) 19:03, October 12, 2014 (UTC)

I don't understand what you are proposing. We've been building the infoboxes for the specific purpose of avoiding going back and changing anything. 4e stats are 4e stats and they stay in the 4e part of the infobox or (hopefully) the 4e tab. All we have to do is add 5e stuff—no retrofitting required!
Moviesign (talk) 22:39, October 12, 2014 (UTC)
Well yes, but a few problems do remain for charting 4e alignments. For example, how do we chart cleric alignments in 4e? Do we just list a series of close alignments (so clerics of Corellon can be lawful good, good, and unaligned) or do we use the alignment box? Alternately, do we make a separate alignment box for listing 4e alignments or do we just remove the "cleric alignment" part of 4e infoboxes for deities?

Additionally, there's the question of whether we require separate pages for the good and evil alignments when neutral good and neutral evil probably serve the same purpose. I suppose we could though if that's what people prefer.

Niirfa-sa (talk) 23:46, October 12, 2014 (UTC)

Personally, I have not been using the alignment chart because I want to incorporate all editions... Check out the Luthic page, where I used 2nd... 3e... and 4th edition info... now, with the tabs I guess I could use the chart... or we could just make a 4e Chart... P.S. the chart does look cool for the worshipers, though :)
- Darkwynters (talk) 01:17, October 13, 2014 (UTC)

For 4e, I would just list the possible cleric or worshiper alignments, there can't be more than four or else we just put "Any" :D I would like to see 10 different pages, one for each alignment. Evil and Good alignments can either redirect to the ones you proposed above, or they could have their own page if there is enough material for it. If you redirect, then a Note could be added about the 4e differences. My 2 copper.
Moviesign (talk) 02:16, October 13, 2014 (UTC)

I'm also not sure what's been proposed, but I think de-merging the alignments is an unnecessary as 4e merging them in the first place. It's another case of needlessly extrapolating or interpolating the lore. If the 4e stats say "Good", then "Good" is. The alignment could link to an umbrella Good page, and I think that's enough. If there's a problem, blame 4e. :)

I agree there's a problem of having pretty alignment grids for some entries and a poky little "Good" for others. It's unbalanced, but that's more a style thing. I think the AL grids are bit excessive myself, and a list of alignments would be sufficient, but eh. Do we need equivalents for 1e and 4e?

— BadCatMan (talk) 09:31, October 13, 2014 (UTC)
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