The Ins and Outs of Your Character Sheet (The Basics)

If you’re new to Dungeons and Dragons, let alone any tabletop roleplaying game, filling in your character sheet for the first time can seem like a lot. Tons of boxes to fill, modifiers you have to calculate, and more can be daunting. Here is a breakdown of each section of your character sheet to make your character creation a little easier!

Character Info

This is the easiest part of the character sheet – who are you playing? Choose a fun name, your class and race, and note your current class level. For example, you could note an eleventh-level wizard as Wizard-11.

Your background describes where you came from and your underlying place in the world. These range from hermit, to adventurer, to inheritor, and so many more. These often give you addition bonuses, so choose wisely!

Alignment is how your character acts. Are you a chaotic being, or are you good in nature?

Experience points are determined by your DM and changes as the story progresses. The more experience you get, the higher your level, the cooler you become.

Character Stats

Your character’s statistics are your strengths and weaknesses. We’ll use the tomato example to explain:

Strength is how easily you can crush a tomato.

Dexterity is how easily you can catch that tomato. (Also determines your initiative count.

Constitution is how many rotten tomatoes you could eat without getting sick. (Also determines your hit points).

Intelligence is whether or not you know that a tomato is a fruit and not a vegetable.

Wisdom is knowing that, just because a tomato is a fruit, does not mean that you should put it in a fruit salad.

Charisma is how well you could convince someone to eat the tomato-fruit salad anyway.

These statistics can be adjusted by many factors: race/class traits, proficiency bonus (which adjusts with levels), ability score improvements (which adjusts with levels), spells, and more.

Inspiration is a little reward that your DM can give you if they think you are doing a good job. You can expend this boost when making an attack roll, saving throw, or ability check. Yay!

Character Health

This section of your character sheet determines your health, attack order, speed and armor – all vital in combat.

Armor class is determined by your race and what armor your wearing. Bonus if you have a shield!

Initiative is the bonus you add to your initiative roll, which determines the order you go when in combat.

Speed is how fast you move – this can vary with race, spells, magic items, etc.

Hit points are determined by both your class and your constitution modifier. This is how much health you have. Sometimes you will get temporary hit points, just as a little boost.

Your hit dice is what you roll when taking a short rest to gain a little bit of health back, also determined by your class.

Death saves are made when your character goes unconscious. Three successes and you live, three failures…you get the gist.

Character Attacks and Spellcasting

Here, you put your weapons that you use (if any), their attack type, and what damage they do. The weapons you can use is determined by what character you play. For example, a paladin may use a longsword, a ranger may use a bow, and a barbarian may use an axe – it all depends on who you are!

Character Personality

This section determines the different distinguishing qualities that your character has – what they believe in, who they aspire to be, what makes them tick – this often comes with the background you choose, but ultimately the choice is yours.

Character Proficiencies and Languages

Here is where you put your character’s proficiencies – languages, weaponry, toolkits, etc.

Character Equipment

Here’s where you note everything you carry. This usually includes magic items, toolkits, and of course, your money!

Character Features and Traits

This box encompasses all of the features that come with your race and class. You might want to write small – this will exponentially increase as you level up!


This page features the slew of spells that your character has (if they have them). The way you cast spells is determined mainly by your class, but also can be determined by your race. The number of spells you have can vary depending on who you play.

Once you have everything laid out, the creation of your character sheet should go smoothly. Happy adventuring!

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