Dungeons and Dragons Character Creation
The guide to Dungeons and Dragons Character creation.
About Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition and this guide
The latest edition of Dungeons and Dragons adds a more balanced array of abilities and features that streamlines the game compared to past editions. No time is better than now to jump headfirst into the realm of Dungeons and Dragons and have fun playing with your friends! With the Fifth Edition of Dungeons and Dragons making a character is more simple than ever, however the immense amount of rules and reading can still be daunting for any new player. The character is the core part of Dungeons and Dragons, allowing the player to make something unique. This guide will show you exactly how to build a standard Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition Character in a simple and concise way. To create a character please use the Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition Players Handbook to create the character you envision. Also you will need some dice we recommend the Austor 7 x 7 Dungeons and Dragons Polyhedral Dice Sets with Pouches, 49-Pieces because it will give you plenty of dice and is a great price.
The first and most important step in developing your character is having a vision. Do you see yourself as an Elven spellcaster, or maybe a fierce Half-Orc Barbarian? Either way, start imagining how your character will act, fight, speak (all cool players use accents), and do in your game. You do not need all the nitty gritty specifics yet, but just get an idea first that will guide your decision making later.
Step 2: Download and print a character sheet
A character sheet is absolutely necessary to play Dungeons and Dragons. It will house all of your stats, your character attributes and other miscellaneous information about your Dungeons and Dragons Character. Go to this link to download a character sheet, we recommend printing all parts of the sheet so you have room to put all the information about your character. We also recommend writing down the spells your character uses as well.
Step 3: Choose a Race
Now its time to get into the fun stuff. Open your Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition book and go to the Table of Contents and look at Chapter 2:Races. Here you will find all of the races to choose from for this tutorial we will choose a Dwarf. Write down all of the Dwarf traits so you can implement those later in the process, also if you would like to you can choose a subrace, a subrace will add on the traits unless otherwise noted.
Step 4: Choose a Class
Now go into the Table of Contents again and look at all of the different classes. For this guide we will pick a Fighter. Go to your class page and look at the class features. Write down all the information onto your character sheet into the appropriate boxes and be sure to look at the Fighter by level to chart to see what exactly the fighter gets at every level.
Step 5: Determine Ability Scores
Now it is time to break out the dice to determine your ability scores. You will roll four 6 sided dice (d6) and add up the highest three numbers that you rolled and write that number down. Repeat this step 5 other times to get all of your ability scores. Your abilities are the boxes on the left of the character sheet that say Strength, Dexterity, Constitution,etc. Put your highest ability scores in the abilities that best fit your character, so for a fighter we will put our highest in Strength and Constitution. We will add the ability score increases later.
Step 6: Choose a background
Go the background section of the book and browse through the available backgrounds. Pick one that best fits your characters personality. We will pick Folk Hero. Use the background to help shape your characters ideals and flaws and also write down your backgrounds features, proficiency and equipment.
Step 7: Choose equipment
Now if you have not already choose what your character will have. Look at your class page and then go to the equipment page to see the stats for the different equipment available to you. We will pick chain mail, a battleaxe and a shield, a light crossbow and 20 bolts, and a dungeoneers pack (for the dungeoneers pack go to the equipment page and there is a section about all of the different types of starting packs and what is inside them). Also go to the armor page and note the stats for your armor. Also in the equipment section at the starting equipment part there is a table that shows how much money each class gets. Roll and calculate your starting gold and write that number on your character sheet in the GP box.
Step 8: Finish off abilities/skills and modifiers.
Now we are going to add up the ability score increases we get from our race and then refer to the table on page 13 of the book to see what ability modifier you have. Then if you have not already write down the modifier of each ability on the skill table on the skills that correspond to that ability. Also, if you are proficient in a skill that means you add your proficiency bonus (which is determined by your class) onto the modifier for that skill. So if you roll a deception check and you are proficient in it, then you will roll a dice then add the skill modifier (which should be your charisma mod+ your proficiency bonus). This same rule of proficiency bonus also applies to tools you are proficient in and anything else, if you are proficient in it that means you add your bonus to any rolls with that.
Step 9: Finish your character backstory and alignment
This is the part where all of your creative juices should flow. On the backstory page make a backstory about your character that will guide how you play him and also help you to better role play as your character. Be sure to write down details about his childhood, any loved ones, his motivations in life, his goal in life, how he acts, and also why he is joining up with your fellow players on an adventure. The tone for a D&D adventure should be set right at the beginning and by giving your Dungeon Master and your fellow players a good idea of what your character is like they can better role play with you and everyone will have more fun. Be sure to fill in on your character sheet your alignment. Alignment is how good/bad/lawful/chaotic your character is on a spectrum. Your character can range anywhere from lawful good to chaotic evil and anywhere in between. How your alignment is set should dictate how you role play your character. For instance if I want my fighter to be a hero of the people but maybe goes off the wire sometimes and is unpredictable I would choose Chaotic Good as my alignment.
Step 10: YOU ARE DONE!
Now go find some friends to play with and dive into a world of fun!