New to DnD and I'm hosting a DnD night with a few friends. As DM I've told em all to have preset character sheets but I'd prefer it if they all created one.

In the equipment section there are various armours, ranging in cost. Is there a standard cap for creation? E.g. a player gets 1000gp to spend on both armour and weapons?

  • 12
    \$\begingroup\$ You may want to have a look at this discussion. Roleplaying games require a lot of reading and you may want to get used to it. You need to read the book. \$\endgroup\$
    – nvoigt
    Jan 4, 2015 at 12:06

4 Answers 4


The standard equipment that a starting character gets is defined by both their class at 1st level and by their background. The class describes various options for equipment, such as the Rogue who chooses:

  • a shortsword OR a rapier
  • a shortbow and a quiver of 20 arrows OR a shortsword
  • a burlgars pack, a dungeoneers pack, OR an explorers pack

and straight-up gets: Leather Armor, two daggers, and Thieve's Tools.

SO, a player who is creating a rogue character can pick one item from each bullet point, and will obtain the remaining items. An explicit example of this is a first level Rogue choosing two shortswords and a dungeoneers pack. In that case, the equipment the Rogue character gets from their class is:

  1. two shortswords
  2. a dungeoneers pack
  3. leather armor
  4. two daggers
  5. thieve's tools

Next is the background. Backgrounds provide more than just equipment, such as skill and tool proficiencies. The Criminal background gives proficiency in Deception, Stealth, Thieve's Tools, and One type of Gaming Set of the player's choice. For equipment, they have the following:

  1. A crowbar
  2. A set of Dark Common Clothes (including a hood)
  3. A belt pouch containing 15gp

SO, a player who creates a first level Rogue with the Criminal background will get to pick equipment from the Rogue and get the rest, and get more from their background, including a little bit of extra starting gold.

Alternatively, there is a table called Starting Wealth by Class in the beginning of the Equipment Chapter. By default, a player may choose to roll dice according to their class, as defined by the table. The Rogue, for example, may choose to roll 4d4 and multiply the result by 10, with a minimum of 40gp, average of 100gp, and maximum of 160gp starting gold.


The chapter 5 of the players handbook titled "Equipment" features a "Starting Wealth by Class" table (PHB: 143) where you can look this up.

Please note that this is an alternative to the equiment gained through class or background.


Each class has a standard set of starting equipment options detailed in the PHB. A Fighter, for example, starts with the equipment from his or her background, plus:

(a) chain mail or (b) leather, longbow and 20 arrows

(a) a martial weapon and a shield or (b) two martial weapons

(a) a light crossbow and 20 bolts or (b) two handaxes

(a) a dungeoneer's pack or (b) an explorer's pack

The intent is to provide a reasonable set of equipment

The backgrounds have similar lists. As @nvoight commented, this information is readily available in the book, which you should read through before attempting to run a game.


In addition to the above answers specifying starting equipment a class received, you can choose the starting gold option instead and build your own equipment list. This is an alternative and not in addition to what you get for your class. The starting gold table is found in the equipment section, and I will update the page number later when I get home. The table is much the same as it has been since 1e.

I honestly believe it's best to take the starting equipment.


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