Character creation (also: character generation or character design) is the process of making a character whose role the Player will assume. Character creation is about realizing the concept of the character within the options and rules of the RPG system.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

27
votes
16answers
2k views

How to: Create a good backstory for how the party got together?

I'm making a list of things to do for character creation for my first game as DM, and one things I've often heard is to have at least some reason for the players to have come together for their ...
19
votes
6answers
4k views

What is the optimal way to design a well balanced party

Confession - I just TPK'd my group....again. One of the reasons that has been identified is that while the party is composed of 5 pretty well optimized characters, as a party they just aren't in ...
21
votes
2answers
17k views

How do favored classes work in Pathfinder?

I'm working on creating a half-elf paladin character for a Pathfinder game. Full disclosure: this is the first time I've tried creating a character; I've used ones other people created before. In ...
22
votes
1answer
2k views

What are “tiers”, and what tier is each class?

I tend to play Wizards, almost exclusively, though I have branched out and played Clerics, Druids, Sorcerers, and, at some point each other core class. I would like to play something different for my ...
29
votes
10answers
871 views

What can I include in my character's background to help the GM build a better story?

Whatever the system or the world used, what can a player add to his character background that will help the GM make the game more interesting. Games are much more interesting with the addition of ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

Is there a reason to ignore/adjust the Wealth By Level chart?

While reading this Cohort Question I was kinda struck by a quote in there and instead of asking an unrelated question in that area I figured it would be good to make a separate question. The quote ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

If my Initiator Level is high enough, can I take Stances of a level higher than 1st when I take my first level in a martial adept class?

Usually, a martial adept’s Initiator Level is equal to his class level, plus his class level in any maneuver-granting Prestige Classes, plus half his level in all other classes. This means a ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

How do multiple attacks with natural weapons work?

I'm planning a character that has 2 claw attacks and a tail attack as natural weapons, but now I'm a little confused about the mechanics of using them all. 1: Can both claws be used at once as a ...
28
votes
10answers
1k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of develop in play (DIP) compared to develop at the start (DAS) character generation?

Originally, Are you really DIPpy?1 What are the advantages and disadvantages to developing your character in play (DIP) compared to developping at the start (DAS)? What experiences have you had with ...
12
votes
4answers
4k views

Character build for Gandalf in D&D3.5?

In my groups next campaign I am hoping to be a PC instead of the DM and I want to play a character who is like Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. I began looking at options; he would ...
20
votes
11answers
1k views

How can you find a balance between effective/optimised characters and creative characters?

When creating characters, I often face a dilemma between making a character. It feels like they can either be optimized so they can "pull their own weight" or having a character I think is creative ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of allowing a player to play a large creature?

We're playing 4e Thunderspire Labyrinth and we've decided to let the tank play a large (2x2) Minotaur. He has all of the stats from the Minotaur player character in the Players Handbook 3, but he's a ...
6
votes
1answer
235 views

How to decide which of my intended classes to start as when multiclassing in D&D 5e?

I'm putting together a Shadow Monk/Assassin Rogue character concept for a new game of D&D 5e but I have little experience with multi-classing. So, what should I consider when deciding which class ...
9
votes
5answers
5k views

How do you make a wizard who doesn't need a spellbook?

I know what you're thinking: "Dude, just play a Sorcerer". Well, I ask this question because of two main reasons. Wizards get some extra spells for specializing, and my DM says sorcerers are rare. I ...
7
votes
9answers
2k views

D&D high-difficulty / technical character build suggestions

I have always been a huge fan of D&D style derivatives, but I have never actually played D&D itself. (Baldurs Gate (I & II), Final Fantasy VII+, Magic the Gathering, Oblivion, Fallout 3+). ...
19
votes
2answers
347 views

What are the consequences of letting players be characters from a work of fiction?

What are the consequences of letting players be characters from a book, movie, or other pre-existing work of fiction? For example, how would I handle a campaign based on the X-Files where the PCs are ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

Does it make sense to give characters free weapons expertise?

A player I know suggested that when playing 4th ed, it made sense to give characters the Weapons Expertise feat for free at 5th level. I don't have much experience with 4.0, so I don't know whether I ...
12
votes
3answers
20k views

Bomb based alchemist builds

I'm looking for help with building a bomb-slinging alchemist at level 10. Assume 25 point buy for initial generation. The focus is getting the most effective bomb usage possible. Fast bombs is ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

do I only get a limited number of at-will powers?

In the pre made characters for the 4e adventure Keep on the Shadowfell they only give each character about 3 at-will powers. reading through the PHB I find that most characters have about 4-6 at-will ...
12
votes
5answers
3k views

Creating a Wizard at high levels: How many Spells should he know?

I have looked all over this site & Google but I can't seem to get a good answer to this. When creating a Wizard over level 1, how many spells should he have in his spellbook? I'm speaking in ...
9
votes
3answers
799 views

Help w/Character Sheet: What are ability modifiers and how do I calculate them?

So I was filling out the character sheet and suddenly I saw an "ability modifier". I'm confused, and am asking these questions for clarification: Where do you put your "Standard Array" number. In ...
9
votes
4answers
5k views

What class/builds can be used to fulfill both striker and controller roles?

Many classes/ builds allow one to fulfill multiple party roles. For example, a Paladin is a hybrid leader/defender. What classes/builds are a good way to handle striker/controller? I'm looking for ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Resisted energy types and immunity

I would like to know the distribution of energy resistances and immunities in 3.5 monsters, and especially the four basic types fire, cold, electricity and acid. It is often said that fire is most ...
5
votes
2answers
280 views

How compatible are D&D 4E core and essentials in terms of hybrid characters?

I know that in terms of actually running a campaign that they can go side by side very well, with one side doing some things honestly better than the other like the monster vault...However, a person ...
42
votes
12answers
8k views

Unhate-able Villains

There are so many guides on how to make a villain your players will truly hate, but I am trying to make a villain that the characters will feel for. How can I create a "good" villain, like someone who ...
38
votes
15answers
2k views

How can I help a player craft a backstory that gives me plot hooks?

I have a new player joining my game soon who has taken the place of another player. Unfortunately, the character's backstory is lacking. It doesn't tell me a lot about the character. Because I draw ...
13
votes
6answers
18k views

What character creation tools & guides are available for Shadowrun 5e?

I'm a totally new player to Shadowrun 5e. My experiences are largely with D&D 4e, Savage Worlds, and Cyberpunk 2020. I'm just seeing if there are any unofficial (but very helpful) guides or tools ...
16
votes
7answers
3k views

Playing as, not with, ourselves

A few of the members of our gaming have had the probably-not-unique idea of statting ourselves as if we were player characters in a campaign. Our problem is trying to find a basis of comparison for ...
12
votes
10answers
2k views

Should I allow a Wondrous Item on level 1 character creation?

I'm starting a new 3.5 campaign, using only the 3 core books for character creation, and starting all my players off at level 1. One of my players has written a (rather good) backstory for his ...
11
votes
7answers
686 views

What systems use interesting questions to inspire character backgrounds? [closed]

In another question, it was suggested that the game "Dread" has a number of questions to make players really consider their character's backstory and personality. However, I'm planning to run a ...
20
votes
2answers
36k views

Optimal Focused Fighter Builds in Pathfinder

Using just the core rulebook and the advanced player's guide, what would be an optimal build for a fighter using 25 points for point-buy character generation? Assume it's a level 10 fighter intended ...
14
votes
1answer
302 views

Examples of Fate mechanics for telling team stories with one player

I want to run a Stargate SG-1 game for a single player in the Fate Core system. Stargate stories are about teams of equally important people, rather than the single protagonist that our "twosie" ...
12
votes
4answers
3k views

How to rule a permanently blind PC in D&D 4e?

One of my players wants to build a totally blind character, and so far as I can tell the system has no rules for it, despite coming close. Blinded is a condition that more accurately reflects having ...
11
votes
2answers
4k views

Character creation walkthrough

It has been a long time since I last played RPGs and I have forgotten so much about how things like character creation work. I am using the Pathfinder core rule book for all of my characters currently ...
10
votes
2answers
578 views

How can I introduce Life Paths to character generation?

The first time I played* Traveller, I found myself blown away by the detailed character creation, featuring year by year (4 year chunks actually) break down of how your character got where they are ...
18
votes
5answers
665 views

Good techniques for getting player-character backgrounds integrated into the game?

So I'm starting a new campaign for an existing gaming group soon, and I'd like to actually incorporate character backgrounds that the players will be creating (eventually). These aren't epic-novels or ...
17
votes
7answers
961 views

How can I roll a character's age using only d6?

I'm making a simple, slightly comedic home-brew RPG where a lot of the characters' base stats are randomized for comedic effect. This includes the characters' age. (So you can have a ridiculously ...
16
votes
5answers
726 views

Cooperative character building?

I'm aware of games where the players cooperatively build elements of the story world (I hear Dresden Files does this), but are there any where the players cooperatively build their characters? What ...
14
votes
2answers
980 views

How can I play an Artificer predictively?

Of the various classes held to be Tier One, the Artificer is perhaps the absolute trickiest to play. Though their potential power - especially with access to downtime - is immense, they more than any ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Why do my players want to be superman in Dresden Files?

I'm on my third campaign using Dresden Files, and I'm noticing a pattern. There's an incredibly wide range of powers and abilities that a character can have, and an even larger number of ways to fluff ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

Need help finding a mind-controlling parasite

I need help finding a creature to play as a player in D&D 3.5. The idea is that it inserts itself into the brains/head/control center of other creatures. I was not able to find any stats for such ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

How to make monsters with class levels?

Say I was trying to make a 3rd level Harpy bard. Do I remove its seven hit dice, feats, BAB and skills etc and start from scratch? Or do I add the class levels on top of all that? How does level ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Ex-wizard that pretends he still is a wizard

I am pondering creating an epic-level wizard character, who through excessive use of Mordenkainen's Disjunction on artifacts has permanently lost all casting ability as well as all his class levels ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

Is there any way to get non-Class Skills as class skills without Multiclassing?

The Situation behind this question is I want to Get Knowledge Planes and Use Psionic Device on a Kobold Wilder so that A.) he can Prestige into Anarchic Initiate and B.) So I can use Dorje that have ...
6
votes
4answers
350 views

What are the steps that you as GM's and PC's take to develop a Level 1 character?

This is for the basic character creation at level 1. I know the PHB goes into some detail on character creation and the steps for doing so. What I want to know is how you as GMs or players create ...
5
votes
1answer
171 views

Samsaran Witch : as an Hexer, Support / Control

DISCLAIMER : This character is expected to take part in a coherent campaign, it is not a sandbox exercise. Characters will start at level 1. Hello everyone, I am looking at fleshing a good Samsaran ...
5
votes
2answers
320 views

Blood Obsessed Character with Weaponized Blood?

I though of an idea for a character I'd really like to make and play, but I'm not sure how to go about it, or if it's even possible. So far I've only played Pathfinder and everyone I know plays ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

How do I fill the DnD 4E Essentials Character Sheets? - clarifications

I'm exercising to start as a DM, and one of the things I'm doing is know how to fill the 4E (especially Essentials) character sheets. I'm not sure what I should fill What are the "Modifier", "Misc" ...
4
votes
2answers
417 views

How do I turn a daily into an encounter?

I'm looking for something that shifts a daily power into an encounter power. I want to take the Demigod Epic Path so I can use Blade Cascade whenever I want. Ideas?
2
votes
2answers
134 views

Links between Type, Subtype and Race (and Template)

Lately I am studying the templates. Most of them make you change type or subtype, but nothing is said about the race although some templates can change your appearance heavily and I am a little lost. ...