Lawful Evil

“The Tyrant”: Lawful evil represents meticulous, intentional, diabolical, and frequently successful evil. A lawful evil villain methodically takes what he wants within the limits of his code of conduct without regard for whom it hurts. He cares about tradition, loyalty, and order but not about freedom, dignity, or life. He plays by the rules but without mercy or compassion. He is comfortable in a hierarchy and would like to rule, but is willing to serve. He condemns others not according to their actions, but according to race, religion, nationality, or social status. He is loath to break laws and staunch about keeping his word at least somewhat because he depends on order to protect himself from those who oppose him. Some lawful evil villains have particular taboos, such as not letting children come to harm or not killing enemies before offering them the chance to join them. They feel that such compunctions put them above actual villains.

Some lawful evil characters commit themselves to evil with zeal—much like a crusader committed to good. Not only are they willing to hurt others for their own ends, but they also take pleasure in spreading wickedness as an end unto itself. They may also do evil as a duty to their vile masters.

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