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Creatures, Spells, and Effects

Source Pathfinder Unchained pg. 100
Many spells and effects rely on alignment, such as detect evil, holy weapons, and blasphemy. Below are five suggested options for dealing with these abilities.

Full Removal: You can remove alignment-based spells and effects entirely. Consider replacing monster spell-like abilities with others of similar power. You’ll need to replace other abilities that affect creatures of particular alignments (such as the heavenly fire ability of a sorcerer with the celestial bloodline) or restrict character options to avoid such abilities.

Aligned Loyalties: You can allow alignment-based effects to instead apply to characters who have loyalties to the concepts of chaos, evil, good, or law (or any concept close enough).

Outsiders Only: You can keep the alignment subtypes for outsiders and allow alignment-based effects to apply only to them. In this style of game, mortals live in a world with shades of gray, but true evil does still exist in the multiverse in the hearts of daemons, demons, devils, and the other evil outsiders.

Radiant and Shadow: You can instead have alignment-based effects apply to everyone, or nearly everyone. Remove the alignments and replace “good” and “evil” with stand-ins that lack moral implications, such as “radiant” and “shadow.” These are then treated as simply two more forms of energy that exist in the world, and any creature can wield a weapon that deals radiant or shadow damage. You’ll need to make appropriate changes, such as changing DR 5/good to DR 5/ radiant, making unholy weapons shadow weapons, and so on. Creatures that were once strongly defined by their alignment become more unpredictable. Maybe some angels are just as corrupt as devils, despite their celestial forms, and the PCs must team up with a noble demon and wield shadow weapons to defeat their foe. You can choose to grant certain creatures immunity; for instance, perhaps angels don’t take radiant damage from radiant weapons or radiant smite, the stand-ins for holy weapons and holy smite.

Subjective Morality: You can make your world extremely complex by replacing all alignment-based effects with subjective morality based on loyalties. In this kind of game, everyone is the hero of his own story, and the only alignment-based items and spells that exist are the ones named after the good alignment (such as holy weapons and holy word) plus detect evil. However, these effects apply not to good in the usual sense, but instead depend on the loyalties of their users. When someone uses detect evil, it detects others who have loyalties that oppose the caster’s. When a character wields a holy weapon, it deals extra damage to those with conflicting loyalties, and so on. It’s up to the GM to decide when loyalties conflict. For instance, if a magus decides that his primary loyalty is to himself, he could not reasonably claim that everything that ever attacks him has a conflicting loyalty, but an enemy who constantly abused him in the past would have a conflicting loyalty. Against this enemy, the magus’s holy attacks would strike true. This world might even do away with the idea of loyalties to the concept of good and allow paladins and antipaladins alike to use the paladin class and smite each other. Since even outsiders no longer have an alignment subtype, you’ll need to add other subtypes to the list of choices for abilities such as bane or a ranger’s favored enemy class feature. This covers subtypes such as demon or devil, but some outsiders have no non-alignment subtype. If you want such creatures to be subject to these abilities, you could lump them together under a new subtype (such as “independent”), or add subtypes on a case-by-case basis—the astral leviathan might have the “astral” subtype, for example.