Sunday, 7 December 2008

Chaotic Alignment Archetypes

Chaotic Evil

- Gilles de Rais, pedophile, child-snatcher and murderer of 80-200 young boys. Took his greatest pleasure in letting his victims know that they were to die.
- Hannibal Lecter, from Red Dragon and The Silence of the Lambs. "You can't reduce me to a set of influences." (The character was unfortunately ruined in the later books.)
- Iago, from Othello.
"Demand me nothing. What you know, you know. From this time forth I never will speak word."

Chaotic Neutral

- Hunter S. Thompson, American journalist and narcotics lover. Most of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was true, you know.
- Q, from Star Trek: The Next Generation. 'He's devious and amoral and unreliable and irresponsible and definitely not to be trusted.'
- Lord Byron, 'Mad, Bad and Dangerous to know'.

Chaotic Good

- R2D2, from the Star Wars films.
- Tom Bombadil, from The Lord of the Rings.
- Asterix the Gaul.


  1. 95% of my characters are chaotic good. I suspect the majority of adventurers are - if you're lawful good, you join an army, a police force, or some other licensed group. If you're neutral, (imho) you're not motivated enough to go out and do things - you'll fix stuff locally, but that's about it.

    If you're CG, you're the guy that gets up, and punches the bully in the face, because it needed to be done.

    I'd pick Han as a better example of CG than R2D2, though. R2 doesn't show that much morality. Han is clearly a guy that doesn't care about legality. He might have been more CN in his past, but by the time Ep IV rolls around, he's CG despite himself. ;)

    Jango/Boba are pretty good examples of CE as well. Jabba would be a nice one too, although Jabba's almost LE, within a certain set of laws.

  2. Lorechaser: Chaotic Good is the hardest to think of examples for. I must have sat thinking for about half an hour before coming up with those three.

    Then suddenly you come along and suggest Han Solo, who's the obvious choice but I bizarrely didn't think of. Robin Hood, of course, is the other one I should have come up with.

    I would put Boba Fett in the Neutral Evil pile - he's just out for number one and that's it. Anyway, I'll be doing similar entries for Lawful and Neutral tomorrow and the day after.

    I used to create mostly Chaotic Good characters too, although nowadays I tend more towards Lawful Neutral (I like the idea of somebody who puts duty before everything else) and Chaotic Evil (I quite like the concept of somebody utterly amoral who has to work together with a group for whatever reason).

  3. I would think that serial killers like Lecter would be Lawful Evil, no? From all accounts, they tend to be obsessive types who live by strict codes of behaviour, indeed have to in order to continue their crimes without being caught.

  4. Kelvin: Depends how you define the alignments, as always. I think that Lawful Evil types are those who work within the law to get what they want - who twist and manipulate it but don't out right break it.

    But Hannibal Lecter, at least in the first two books, only cared about causing misery. That was his driving force, and he didn't care what laws he had to break to do it.