This is inspired by the discussion on Harbinger’s recent post about alignment. They’re more specific codes to differentiate ways of playing an alignment, including specific prohibitions and prescriptions.

You can use these in several ways including:

  • Player-directed XP, action points, or some other reward for notable fulfillment of your tenets.
  • More specific ways to tell if a player is upholding an alignment.
  • Award some kind of persistent bonus that goes away temporarily if any of the tenets are violated.
  • Attach classes that normally have an alignment requirement to a set of archetypes instead.

Example Archetypes are:

Champion (LG)

  • Always have an objective in mind that will improve the world.
  • Never act without considering the potential consequences.
  • Never break a law unless there are literally no other options to save an innocent.
  • Never fight without honor unless doing so would clearly jeopardize the objective.
  • Never break your word.

Justicar (LG)

  • Always know the laws of the societies you visit.
  • Always stay within the letter of the law, and within the spirit of just laws.
  • Always pursue villains that have followed the law through legal channels.
  • Always help the innocent, even if you must temporarily find a loophole in the law.
  • Always work to remove unjust laws.

Hero (NG)

  • Always have an objective in mind that will improve the world.
  • Never stand idly while an innocent suffers, even if the suffering is allowed by the law.
  • Always offer the villainous an opportunity, explicit or implicit, to repent.
  • Always follow the law unless it clearly interferes with your objective and there is no easy alternative.
  • Never allow fear for your own safety prevent you from pursuing your objective.

Healer (NG)

  • Never harm those that have not, themselves, caused unjust harm.
  • Always help those you can, however you can, unless it would keep you from succeeding at a greater mission.
  • Never accept payment from those that have less than you.
  • Always follow laws designed for the greater good.
  • Never let an unjust law prevent you from doing good.

Trickster (CG)

  • Always learn the self-imposed limits and foibles of those around you.
  • Never allow a friend to avoid a necessary task out of fear or self-doubt.
  • Never grant anyone respect, but grant those that deserve it aid and loyalty.
  • Always take advantage of opportunities to force those around you to improve themselves.
  • Always turn your best efforts on those that have no sense of humor and refuse to become better people.

Outlaw (CG)

  • Always break unjust laws whenever doing so won’t endanger your mission.
  • Never stand idly while an innocent suffers, even if the suffering is allowed by the law.
  • Always steal everything you can from villains.
  • Always donate whatever you can to the good and innocent.
  • Always repay both loyalty and betrayal.

Ascetic (LN)

  • Never antagonize the legitimate authority of the land or refuse their requests without a conflicting obligation.
  • Never act without considering the potential consequences.
  • Never own more than you require to perform your duties.
  • Never fight dishonorably.
  • Never break your word.

Prosecutor (LN)

  • Always know the laws of the societies you visit.
  • Always stay within the letter if not the spirit of the law.
  • Always make best use of loopholes or little known rules to accomplish your goals anyway.
  • Always ensure you’re in position to punish lawbreakers.
  • Always know what laws your enemies have broken.

Pragmatist (TN)

  • Always have an objective in mind.
  • Never cause harm to another thinking being, particularly those that haven’t harmed you, unless absolutely required to achieve your objective.
  • Never let sentiment prevent you from doing what needs to be done to achieve your objective.
  • Never break a law or otherwise antagonize the powers that be if you can achieve your objective without so doing.
  • Never let predictability or conservative behaviors endanger your objective.

Guardian (TN)

  • If you don’t have a ward (person, place, ideal, etc.) you must find one as soon as possible.
  • Always punish, without regard for law or morality, those that threaten or harm your ward.
  • Never harm your ward or allow your inaction to enable harm to your ward.
  • Never break laws or harm the innocent if doing so would not serve your ward.
  • Always help and reward those who are acting in service to your ward.

Scoundrel (CN)

  • Never give your word but always repay loyalty in kind.
  • Never allow long-term objectives to stand in the way of short-term goals.
  • Always do whatever is necessary to stay free.
  • Always take a risk if the chance of profit outweighs the chance of danger.
  • Always break the law if doing so wouldn’t hurt anyone and improves your situation.

Visionary (CN)

  • Always embellish the truth to make it more interesting.
  • Never do something conventional if the unconventional choice is just as good.
  • Never avoid doing something just because it’s “illegal” or “immoral.”
  • Never hurt your friends unless it’s absolutely necessary for your own safety.
  • Always return gifts and insults in kind.

Schemer (LE)

  • Never get caught in a lie.
  • Never tell more of the truth than is absolutely required.
  • Always have one or more goals.
  • Never take an action that you couldn’t argue contributes toward one of your goals (unless given favors or money).
  • Never avoid doing something to forward your goal if it’s immoral but legal.

Enforcer (LE)

  • If you don’t have a boss, you must find one as soon as possible.
  • Never contradict your boss in public.
  • Never betray your boss unless you were betrayed first.
  • Always carry out your boss’ orders to the letter and spirit as far as you are able.
  • Never allow disrespect and betrayal to go unpunished.

Assassin (NE)

  • Never kill without a contract unless it’s for self defense.
  • Never give up on a contract as long as the situation remains what you agreed to.
  • Never betray your employer except in self-defense.
  • A misrepresented contract or failure to pay for a successful contract must be punished.
  • Never show mercy to the target.

Slaver (NE)

  • You do not have peers, merely pawns, obstacles, and targets.
  • Always give targets and obstacles a chance (at least an implicit one) to become pawns before you kill them.
  • Always attempt to eliminate pawns you can no longer control.
  • Never forget a slight, and never forgive unless it puts the target in your debt.
  • Never do anything illegal yourself if you can get someone else to do it instead.

Pirate (CE)

  • Never spend more than a week in the same place.
  • Always take anything you want if you can get it without consequences.
  • Never hesitate to kill if that gets you closer to your goals.
  • Always place your personal comfort above all other concerns.
  • Always answer threats to your power with overwhelming force.

Beast (CE)

  • Always challenge your superior as soon as you think you can win.
  • Never leave a challenger capable of challenging you again.
  • Never permit an insult to stand unpunished.
  • Never make an oath unless you think you’ll gain an advantage from breaking it at the right time.
  • Always choose the option that makes you scariest to your enemies and followers.