And not the “Lawful Good” stuff, either. This is high quality writing coming at you. (Last alignment post – none so blind as a horse you can’t make drink and all that – I promise.)
Leave it to Cirsova to hit the nail smack on the head. Most of you probably already follow his blog, but just in case you’re part of the great Angry Thumbsucking GM’s trainwreck rubberneckers, go read his post:
By using two axes, chaos moved away from, in the minds of gamers, opposition to Laws of Nature to opposition to the Laws of Man.
The man cuts to the chase here and explains in simpler and less judgmental language than your ‘umble hostess cupcake how to make this stuff work in your game. This guy is probably the one who explained to me how what I have been doing for decades. When it comes to D&D, I’m a natural, and do all this stuff instinctively. So sometimes it’s a struggle for me to put into words what I do. This Cirsova guy has a gift for conciseness. He should be an editor, because he’s really good at it.
But when everyone is playing half-demons, orclings, and priests of nebulous gods of mystic ambivalence, then, yeah, alignment means jack. The cultural and moral framework of elves, half-demons, fae-cat-girls, and all of the other dumb shit you see in post TSR D&D are so alien to the traditionally western framework of morality that both the 1 and 2 axis alignment systems were designed to model, of course it’s not going to actually work!
If you decide that being “good” means you are high quality then alignment doesn’t work either. If you decide that neutral means your driveshaft doesn’t engage so you roll down hills easily, alignment doesn’t work. If you decide “lawful” means that your character is full of laws, alignment doesn’t work. This isn’t a mystery – if there’s a thing that lots of people make work just fine, and you can’t make it work…you’re doing it wrong. Try doing it the way they do it, and it will probably work as well for you as it does for them.
Trust Saint Gygax.
Trust Cirsova, too. Go over and back his magazine, because it’s the real deal. Better than the trash fiction you find at the Barnes and Nobles box stores. The first four were great, especially one and two. Full of the kind of stories that you just can’t find anymore, except that now you can, because of Cirsova. I haven’t read the latest issue yet, but I’ll get to it eventually. I found a trash bag of old porno magazines out in the woods behind (((my mom’s))) house, and have to finish reading through those first. I mean, it’s not everyday that you can find a bunch of free pornography that easy, you know?