There are No Alignment Restrictions in D&D 5E

Over the years that I have been rolling the #characteroftheday using our RPG Character Dice, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook I have rolled some pretty strange characters. Back in the day when we were rolling the D&D 3, 3.5 and Pathfinder dice this posed a bit of a problem, as in the older editions of Dungeons and Dragons classes feature alignment restrictions. So for example Paladins have to be Lawful Good, Barbarians had to take a Chaotic Alignment, etc. etc.

So occasionally When the 3rd Ed Dice where rolled, we would get a class/alignment combo that simply wasn't legal. This sparked a lot of comments, and complaints about the character I rolled across all our social media platforms. For some people alignment was an integral part of the rules, and an important thing to consider when choosing a class. Other's however largely ignored it, treating the alignment as an after thought.

Monks for example needed to take a Lawful Alignment. Meaning this is an illegal character.
In my experience many DMs chose to ignore these restrictions opening up the class and alignments as they saw fit; much in the same way the race/class restrictions are often ignored in Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. And so moving forward, as of D&D 4 Wizards of the Coast removed alignment restrictions on class.

This is just as true in D&D 5 as it was in 4th. There are no longer any rules about which class can take which alignment; it is entirely up to player.

There were a decent amount of confusion  when this one got rolled
Since we released our D&D 5 compatible RPG Character Dice,  I have noticed something interesting. New players and those who have only played D&D 5, act confused when I comment on some of our our D&D 3 dice rolls that the alignment /class combo is illegal. On the other side, I get old veterans asking whether the combo I rolled on the D&D 5 dice is a legal alignment/class combination.

It seems that over the years Wizard of the Coast has been downgrading the importance of alignment in D&D: treating it as more of guideline then a hard fast rule. For older players this is a fairly major change in the game's thinking which requires some getting used. Before this sort of thing was up to the DM. Now it is up to players to interpret their character's morale compass, and select an alignment that they feel is appropriate. This leaves the definitions of each alignment a little more open to interpretation and thus less hard-fast.

As DM who has hosted every edition out there, I think that some alignment restrictions actually make sense given the context of a few of the classes. Making Paladins take lawful alignments makes sense to me. Being Lawful is about following a code much like the religious and chivalrous codes followed by Paladins. On the flip side, Rogues really shouldn't be allowed to take a Lawful alignment. Their very nature and defies lawfulness. Of course these are simply my personal opinions, and you could probably convince me otherwise if you had a good case and well reasoned backstory for your character. But it would be a discussion, and you would need to convince me.

It appears that for now Wizards of the Coast has decided to do away with the arguments about alignment and just remove the restrictions all together. So once again, a friendly reminder that there are no alignment restrictions in D&D 5. Your players may freely choose any class and alignment their heart desires.

What do you think? Are alignment restrictions important, or a relic of an older time in gaming not really applicable today?

Written by: Andrew Gregory
There are No Alignment Restrictions in D&D 5E There are No Alignment Restrictions in D&D 5E Reviewed by JADE Gaming on 6/25/2018 02:05:00 pm Rating: 5


  1. Amazing knowledge and I like to share this kind of information with my friends and hope they like it they why I do dice for dungeons and dragons

  2. I think, like perhaps a lot of us old-schoolers still put here, placing restrictions on players and the game makes excelling and achieving all the more thrilling and possible as you rise out of or above the "adventuring" norms. Adding that back to 5e would bring back D&D to a great place again!

    1. I couldn't agree more! Alignment has truly become an after thought in more recent editions. And I would like to see it given a little more weight again.

  3. I can see paladins, but why not lawful rogues? Lots of detective types in fiction have roguey skills and are lawful in their ethos.

    1. And that is a good argument for a Lawful Rogue! However given that the Archetype is of a Thief/Spy as DM I need you to make the argument as to why you chose a lawful alignment. The Backstab after all doesn't come across as very lawful to me :)