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The 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Alignment Calculator



    One of the most visionary aspects of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game was the concept of "alignments." I was always fascinated by the alignments. There's something beautiful about arranging diverse moral and ethical philosophies into a symmetrical whole, like interlocking pieces in a vast cosmic puzzle. Unfortunately, the alignments have always been one of the most disputed aspects of the game. Ask 20 different AD&D players the meaning of a given alignment, and you'll probably get 20 different answers. One reason for the confusion is that TSR keeps putting out new editions of the game, and every new edition features a "new and improved" version of the alignments. TSR was usurped from its original creators by soulless mass-marketing types sometime in 1984, and these greedy yuppies kept dumbing down the game to appeal to a lower and lower age range so they could make more money. In dumbing down the system, TSR reduced the once-thoughtful alignment philosophies to mindless Hollywood cliches in order to sell their kiddie games. What you have to understand is that the game was originally made for young adults, not 6th graders. In the very beginning, most AD&D players were college students. In fact AD&D originally evolved from "tactical miniatures wargames" such as Chain-Mail, which involved simulation of real-world medieval battles rather than magical fantasy scenarios, and these wargames were mainly played by adult history enthusiasts.     


    To avoid as much confusion as possible, this test is based on the 1st edition of AD&D, and uses the real alignments as written by AD&D creator E. Gary Gygax, not dumbed-down versions of the alignments written by a bunch of yuppies to make money. Let's face it, there are enough 2nd/3rd/4th edition alignment tests already, and most of them seem like they were written for 12 year olds (and considering the game versions they're based on, this was to be expected). In contrast, this test was written for adults. It has 30 questions, most of them based on the real-world and not on fantasy scenarios. You and I live in the real world, not Middle Earth or Hyperboria or wherever, so in order to calculate your alignment I'm going to ask you about real world situations. Only the last 5 questions are set in an AD&D universe, and only to add a little perspective. At the end, this test will tell you which of the 9 alignments best relates to your real-world personality. It will also tell you which "outer plane" (Heaven, Hell, Limbo, etc) your soul will be going to in the Afterlife ... at least according to Gygax.


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