If you’re a new player to D&D, the character creation stage can be a complicated. But thanks to the many tools online it’s now a breeze!

I’ve spoken about what resources DM’s have to create a their stories. But what about players? When it comes to creating a character it can be a difficult, complex process. With the help of the internet, for those less creative, making a character can remain a fun experience.

D&D Character Sheet

D&D Character Sheet – James Jones from Phoenix, AZ, USA [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Character Sheets

As many of us know, if you’re brand new to Dungeons and Dragons, a character sheet can be a bit of a nightmare to navigate. Even worse to create. However, websites such as Orcpub, Aidedd and DnDBeyond all host a variety of character sheet creation tools.

DndBeyond is by the far the most advanced of these tools, which makes sense due to the fact they’re part of Wizards of the Coast. It comes with all the bells and whistles to ease the use of playing with it (especially on platforms like roll20). It explains every feature, every condition and every stat on the page in a clear and beautiful UI. This is an amazing resource for new player deciding to play online, and adds itself to the long list of websites aiding to accessibility.

Orcpub, whilst being slightly less user friendly creates a quick character sheet with a lot of customisation options to choose from. It may look pretty ugly, but you can create custom races and items with a lot of ease. With a quick export to PDF, you’re ready to play in person.

Character Backstory

Now you’ve got the stats for your character, it’s time to give them a personality. Now this is ultimately up to your own demise, but if you’re struggling for ideas there are a wealth of places to visit for these too. Firstly name generators exist, as let’s be honest the hardest part of a new character is naming them! A mere google of *insert race* name generator will give you a wealth of options and inspiration.

Next is your backstory, and again if you’re struggling for ideas people have made some very in-depth backstory generations for you to browse! If you’re looking for detailed, D20fsrd (whilst made for another tabletop system) is a great resource. It produces a wealth of ideas for your character depending on: race, alignment, companions etc. If you want small ideas that give you a lot to think about, whothefuckismydndcharacter.com is a personal favourite. Quirky and hilarious ideas are given seemingly endlessly at a click of a button. Character motivations, cruxes and traits are given in a simple sentence and with your imagination these characters are limitless. Here’s an example of what I mean.

A screenshot from www.whothefuckismydndcharacter.com. Funny, yet it gets the cogs turning.

Appearances

Finally it’s up to you to decide what you want your character to look like. I’ve seen a mass of tips including picking an actor to play them, finding pre-existing artwork etc. You can do this and more but ultimately they’ll look different to everyone at the table. That’s the nature of the beast. However if you really want to nail a look, HeroMachine can create some good looking illustrations from a preset. HeroForge can give you a load of options for minis to be printed off and sent to you!

But if you’re willing to pay for the privilege, then maybe hiring and independent artist is the way to go. Dungeons and Dragons in the digital era has been very lucrative for freelance artists and many of these big D&D live streams have hired them to design much of their content.

Hopefully with the small amount of online resources I’ve suggested here, there is enough to ignite your imagination. Creating a character for your D&D campaign can be fun, but sometimes you just need a kickstart. All the websites have helped me and my players in the past, and maybe they can help you. If you’re struggling that much, you can always use the pre-generated ones supplied by Wizards of The Coast. But you’re not that boring, right?