One topic that always comes up at some stage in a players profession is character creation. Some individuals absolutely love character development, others fear the job that’s involved in it. As a new player, this job can be daunting with no knowledge of what is required.
Initially mention I had passed off the concept of producing this manual. It’s not that I feel this understanding isn’t important, only that there’s a step-by-step manual in the Player’s Handbook (PHB pg. 11). For many this information is enough, this is how which I got into creating characters. I however am not everybody, and some individuals still struggle with character development.
I need to start this whole article off perfect. I’m not your Dungeon Master. None of the steps I present are a replacement for the way your DM does their personality development. My suggestion is to speak with your DM when moving over this manual. Use this as a starting point for that conversation. Let’s create some personalities.
To maintain this article from decreasing in span I am going to suppose that you, the reader, know the game and character sheets enough to write down exactly what features you gain from the choices. If there’s a demand for it I will go more in depth about aspects of the standard character sheets.
I am not going to pay for multiclassing. If you’re using this guide to make your very first character I do not recommend you get into multiclassing since it increases in sophistication and makes character development just that more complicated.
STEP 1: CHARACTER CONCEPT
If there is one thing that is not covered in the PHB step-by-step guide its talking the core notion of a personality. Now if you are not concerned with creating an interesting character or you already have a character that you want to play feel free to skip this step.
Whenever I start out creating a character I wish to commit any extended time period in, I always try to think of the elevator pitch of a personality idea. The elevator pitch to get a current character I made called”Blade-Shield” was”a robot taken over by character and tasked with protecting it”. It’s simple, to the stage, and gives you a place to begin creating the remainder of the character. I’ll be utilizing Blade-Shield for instance for several of those methods to make choices based off of this elevator pitch. This elevator pitch is what you ought to gift to your DM for approval, since you’re maybe playing in their setting and they are the ones possibly planning the narrative.
If you’re struggling with creating this elevator pitch I suggest learning more about the setting you’ll be enjoying in. It can be hard coming up with something fresh if you’ve got zero constraints, so figuring out all of the creative constraints of this setting can reduce the possibilities. Brainstorming with other gamers is another means to help develop with this. Social networking is a great place to get character ideas too. Trying to drill down to where personality notions come from is like trying to describe colors to a blind person, you realize it is but its difficult to explain.
STEP 2: PICK A RACE
This is a rather simple measure, when looking at your elevator pitch it’s possible you could decide what race you select from it. For Blade-Shield I chose an Unearthed Arcana race called Warforged, which will be basically D&D robots. If your elevator pitch does not instantly give away what race you need to select then start to read through the races that are available to you in the campaign setting. Once this choice was made make note of the traits onto your sheet, remembering the ability score changes because these will be important later.
Side note, I realize it is not the best idea to have included a character with a race that isn’t standard to the match for this part of the report. I did so for other characteristics of the character later in this manual. I have a comprehensive understanding of non-standard content for D&D 5e. I recommend for your first character is to stick to the Player’s Handbook. Since you get some experience from the hobby there are numerous resources for discovering non-standard playable races.
I was actually shocked when I found this wasn’t discovered at the PHB guide. This is essential because every background really includes proficiencies and equipment. This is frequently the most missed aspect of a character during character creation. On occasion I’ve forgotten about its existence. Each desktop contains a description of what it’s combined with the proficiencies and equipment.
At this point you will encounter gaining a skill proficiency that you presently have. This can happen if you chose a race which receives a skill proficiency your background also grants. Should this happen then nothing special happens, you do not have to choose another proficiency, you do not obtain experience, you don’t collect $200, or pass Go.
If a character would acquire the exact same proficiency from two different sources, he or she can decide on a different proficiency of the exact same kind (instrument or skill ) instead.
If you do run into a duplicate proficiency select a different one to gain of the exact same type. As an example, if the background you’ve picked is Sailor and you also picked the race Elf, you can gain a couple of the exact same proficiency, Perception. However because of this rule you then would have to select a different ability but not a tool proficiency.
The background you chose does have some tables which you can look at for suggestions but that’s all they’re, suggestions. It’s possible to choose the time to flesh out your personality more at this point or you can wait until you decide greater performance of your personality. Sometimes it is beneficial to roll stats or select your course prior to filling these out as you still might not have a complete idea of the character. Filling out these however can also lead to a better idea about what type you want or what ability scores you ought to focus on.
With Blade-Shield I picked the Soldier background, as I watched them as a war system of the distant past. Their Personality Traits were they had been plausible, which also afterward becomes bit of a flaw. Their ideals are to protect nature, at the price of even of themselves. Their bond is that their memory is corrupt and obsolete, with the necessity to fill in all the gaps. Their flaws are a bit more complex.
It’s not hard for us to wish to create perfect characters, those who can don’t wrong and consistently make the right choice, especially when we start making characters. From experience I have found these characters aren’t fun. There’s no drama when a personality constantly does everything absolutely, it is just not great storytelling. I encourage that everybody come up with some defect that you will have fun playing with. For Blade-Shield his important flaw is they cannot distinguish the difference between somebody telling the truth and lying, and they remember most everything that characters inform him. This has led to some of the best roleplay experiences I’ve had in recent memory. This defect does not need to be important. Anything that makes the most sense to your character, the mightiest of heroes are often more faulty than stories make them out to be.
STEP 3.4: ALIGNMENT
I include this in a separate measure as it can be a heated topic. Recently I have asked players not to put down an orientation, but this is just how we perform. Your DM may ask you to put down an alignment. Discussions of the various alignments is too long of a topic for this guide, so I shall recommend you read this page (PHB pg 122, Fundamental Rules pg 34).
This measure is most likely the most important one you will make in regards to determining your drama experience in D&D. This is because a majority of your attributes you get, and will get, come out of your class. Your course even determines if you get skill score enhancements. Selecting your course will even determine what skill scores you may want your main attention to be if the time comes to create ability scores. Overall this is not a step to breeze over.
Once you have chosen your class this will ascertain your rescue throw proficiencies, skill proficiencies, health, and equipment (I cover this later). Following your elevator pitch (and the personality traits should you’ve got these ) to help you choose these. Having picked your race and history before your class will make sure you don’t have to come back to your skill proficiencies since you inadvertently chose one which one of those two already gave you.
With Blade-Shield that I had a few options. The primary was Druid, but I did not feel it fit due to their soldier background and more war-like nature. This is where having a wider knowledge of what is available comes in handy. I knew that his attention would be about strength. I had been going to focus less on spell casting as a previous player of mine drew me to the idea of this spell-less paladin. Their spell slots have been all used for smiting. Blade-Shield’s holy symbol was going to be a flower that had suspended on their mind, possibly the main reason behind his malfunctioning. Perhaps the blossom is controlling them, who understands.
STEP 5: GENERATE ABILITY SCORES
Before you may begin making skill checks and saving throws you’ll need your skill scores. Generating these are all about the broadest array of ways that a participant and DM can opt to do. Every DM has their own tastes and you absolutely need to speak to them before going into this. I will pay for the selection of ways that you can go about it. As soon as you’ve generated your skill scores, make sure that you add those racial modifiers you obtain from the race you’ve picked in Step 2.
This really is the most typical strategy I have observed, and the one I personally use. The core of this is that you just use the dice to ascertain exactly what your ability scores are. The most common way is to roll up four d6’s and maintain the highest three, six times. Then you take those numbers and select what skill scores you put them in.
This is varied. Personally, I let players roll two distinct sets of numbers using the 4d6 drop the lowest six times. I then allow the players choose which one of the two sets they want to utilize for their skill scores. I do this to account for advantage case rolls, such as rolling all ability scores below 10 or all the scores are totally ordinary. I also have seen the order of rolling for stats determine what skill score they are associated to, leaving the decision from the players hands.
There is a magic collection of numbers that D&D calls for the Standard collection. This is a list of amounts which you can use to your ability scores of a personality. This selection is:
Take each of the numbers and assign them into the ability scores of your choice. This is my technique of selection when generating pregenerated characters since it keeps everyone at about the exact same skill level, and its faster. You’ll observe that the gap between this technique and rolling is that the maximum you can get for an ability score is 15 versus the 18 of rolling. This technique is more stable versus the risk that accompanies rolling.
A system that I often see used by those who love turning personality development to a game of maximizing some skills is your ability to pick your ability scores using a pool of points.
15 – 9 pts
13 – 5 pts
10 – two pts
9 – 1 pts
8 – 0 pts
From here you are able to generate an entire collection of ability scores by”purchasing” each skill score. Personally, I do not like this system just as much, not because of the math involved, but because of the mentality that this kind of ability score generation can produce. I know the urge to get min-maxing your scores and that it is a variation of fun, it isn’t what I like having at my table.
EMBRACE LOW SCORES
From my experience playing I get angry when I do not roll a score below 10. Yeah, I love a minimal score. This goes back to having personality defects, but that is built right into the computer system. Would you wish to be running the big, brute Barbarian? Give him a low Dexterity and laugh when he neglects an acrobatics check, or dread if you need to use that acrobatics to save a teammate. Low ability scores produce tension and play. It will provide you with a feeling of joy if you conquer the probability of having a very low score. Embrace failure. Embrace the minimal ability scores.
Remembering modifiers can be difficult if you have not coped with character generation considerably. There are a few ways in which you can look at it. First is using a very simple equation: (skill score – 10) ÷ 2 (round down). Second is to bear in mind that every number over 10 adds you to the modifier, and each odd number below 10 reduce the modifier by one, remembering that the modifier of 10 is +0 (e.g. 12 and 13 are +1, 14 and 15 are +2, 8 and 9 are -1 and 7 and 6 are -2). The final way is memorization of this table in the PHB pg 13 (Fundamental Rules pg 7).
STEP 5.5: HIGHER LEVEL CHARACTERS
If you are earning a character over 1st degree you will need to go through the process of leveling up for each level. This will change your starting equipment, talk with your DM to determine what else you get at this level. For new DM’s there is a table in the DMG on pg 38 to help you decide the beginning equipment. This will change many of your bonuses for the ability score improvements (if you start at 4th level or above).
STEP 6: EQUIPMENT
There could be some confusion as to why I waited for gear until after skill score generation. I decide to do it this way since some of your skill scores will help determine what gear you choose to take. While each class has a list of gear that they can pick from, you may alternatively instead roll for beginning gold and buy everything you decide to begin with (another motive picking a wallpaper first is helpful). All advice on the gear and starting gold starts on PHB pg 143.
For instance, if you are a Fighter but’ve determined that your main score is Dexterity then you may choose to get a finesse weapon. If you don’t enjoy the beginning equipment a class starts with afterward you taking the purchasing route lets provides you more variety, but you need to keep in mind your course’s proficiencies.
STEP 7: HEALTH AND HIT DICE
Each course has a recorded hit die worth. This is the heart of how much health you have. At first degree your health is equal to the max number on the hit dice ( 6 to get a d6, 8 to get a d8, etc) plus your Constitution modifier. This hit expire value can also be your hit expire, which you get a complete equal to your class level (e.g. if you’re a level 3 Barbarian, you’ve got 3 d12 hit dice).
Every time you level, assuming you’re developing a character above first level, then you’ve got a choice for how much health you receive each level. You can either take the average of your hit die (4 for a d6, 5 for a d8, 6 for a d10, and 7 for a d12) or you’ll be able to roll that die and take the outcome. You then add your Constitution modifier to the number you get for that amount and increase you maximum health by this much. Repeat this for each level.
For this section there’s a general rule to keep in mind: if your class/race reinforces any of the covered bonuses, the class/race takes precedence over what is recorded here. The majority of the time these augments are an addition to existing mechanisms of this game so keeping note of these is important. Be certain that you review all of your racial and course features when going through this section.
Once you’ve picked up exactly what gear you want it is time to begin filling out them onto the sheet. The weapon’s section lets you write down the weapons you’ve got access to, your attack bonus is equivalent to the skill score associated with the weapon (Dexterity if it’s ranged/finesse, Power for everything else such as thrown) plus your proficiency incentive IF you’re proficient with the weapon. The damage is the damage die of the weapon in addition to the ability score connect with the weapon. Your armor determines your armor class (AC) based on the type of armor which you have. The AC calculation is located on the armor table (PHB pg 145).
Initiative is straightforward.
For spellcasters you’ve got two numbers to remember: your spellcasting ability modifier and spell save DC. These are recorded in your course, but now you have the numbers to fulfill these in. Several classes also determine the number of spells they can prepare based on an ability score modifier, be sure that you keep track of this number if you are among those classes (you may know from reading the spellcasting section of your class attributes ).
Finally ensure that any features or abilities that cite an ability score modifier, be sure that you fill people in with the modifier (e.g. Dragonborn’s Breath Weapon, Paladin’s Position on Hands). This amount is only 10 and also the Perception bonus you’ve got. Including skills, which if you’re proficient in you also get to include your proficiency bonus to as well. Treat saving throws exactly the same as abilities when generating bonuses. One number related to your skills you may see in your character sheet will be the Passive Perception.
That should be everything! It seems like a lot, but hopefully this guide can help you understand the procedure for producing a personality, not just filling out the form.