Alignment 5e DnD
Many NPCs and creatures in DnD have a specific alignment that dictates how they react to situations. Similarly, most, although not all, players tend to assign alignments to their characters to help them get a better grasp of character personalities and give some guidance for role-playing.
DnD Alignments in 5e
DnD Alignment works along two axes: lawful to chaotic and good to evil. In DnD, good is defined as selflessness or commitment to helping others, whereas evil is selfishness and narcissism. Lawful focuses on obeying existing power structures and following a higher authority than the self. Chaos is, well, all about free thinking. A given alignment combines those axes, as we explore below.
The Model Citizen
Plays by the Rules
The Fun-Loving Psycho
(Example creatures: bronze, gold, or silver dragons)
Lawful good characters value tradition and uphold the laws of their societies. They always want to do the right thing within the bounds of the law.
(Example creatures: centaurs, giant eagles, pixies, and sprites)
Neutral good creatures value doing what’s right above all else, even the laws. They won’t necessarily jump straight to rulebreaking, but they won’t hesitate.
(Example creatures: brass or copper dragons, djinn, and pegasuses)
Anyone who is chaotic good places their system of morals above all else. This is a typical alignment for adventurers since they know right from wrong and are eager to break or defy social conventions that they see as wrong.
(Example creatures: sphinxes)
Lawful neutral characters value laws above all else, even morality. They’re willing to see wrongs committed if it means upholding the hierarchy. They might still feel sympathy for those wronged but think that breaking the rules for one would be disastrous for the many.
(Example creatures: elementals, giants, dryads, and merfolk)
True neutral creatures are pragmatic and feel that every decision must be weighed on its own merits, regardless of laws or morals. They are less likely to get involved in causes without a better reason than the traditions or inherent wrongness of a situation.
(Example creatures: cyclopses, most fey creatures, and slaads)
Anyone who is chaotic neutral values their freedom over everything else. They openly flout laws and social conventions because they think everyone should be free to do as they please. For chaotic neutrals, lawful creatures are just as bad as evil ones.
(Example creatures: blue or green dragons, most fiends, politicians)
Lawful evil characters often use malicious compliance to get what they want while staying within the bounds of social norms and customs. They purposefully support the rules that work in their favor and often work in the government to strengthen their positions.
(Example creatures: zombies, liches, and hags)
Neutral evil creatures care little for social mores and simply want what they want. They won’t go out to cause a problem purposefully, but they are greedy and selfish.
(Example creatures: black, red, or white dragons, many aberrations, trolls, and demogorgons)
Anyone who is chaotic evil wants to watch the world burn.
(Example creatures: beasts)
Despite all the alignment choices, there are plenty of creatures and characters who are unaligned. For example, it wouldn’t make sense to assign an alignment to a cat, dog, or any nonmagical beast with an Intelligence score of less than 4 because they cannot form intent behind their actions.