Dungeons & Dragons Reveals Its Latest Character Sheet - Update

Dungeons & Dragons Reveals Its Latest Character Sheet - Update

tyranny of dragons - campaign art - tiamat

Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition will place key character stats and roleplaying information on a single, easy-to-reference page.

Original Story:Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition will be available to players in less than a month, so Wizards of the Coast is naturally revealing details of what players can expect. Perhaps one of the most important factors is the character sheet itself, which must relay essential information to players in a way that doesn't overwhelm them with rules and numbers. This is easier said than done given D&D's traditional number crunching, but Wizards seems now seems to be taking a very streamlined approach. Not only can new players quickly access to relevant stats, there's room for D&D's generated personality traits, character backgrounds, and other key roleplaying mechanics.

image

Attributes, skills, and saving throws have all been condensed into a single column on a single page, which is great for starting players. Weapons and equipment space is a little smaller than previous editions, sharing a column with armor and hit points. Still, these sections were always the first to expand into "treasure chests" on additional sheets, so we can probably let it slide. Generated personality traits also have their home on the same page, which means most in-game statistics and roleplaying behaviors can be reviewed at a glance.

The second page is a text wall by comparison, but a useful one detailing race, class, character background, and most importantly, leveling bonuses gained when leveling up. Ideally this will help group leveling proceed quickly when it occurs while providing an easy reference to level-specific traits.

To be fair, this provided sample is only for a pre-generated human fighter class, and may be altered in the finished game or for other character types. At the same time, the streamlined focus seen here so far should go a long way towards adjusting players to the 5th edition, helping players get to the action faster than previous books have. We'll have to wait until July 15th to see how it works in play, but at least now we have a better sense of how characters will "look" in a tabletop sense.

Source: ow.ly

Update: Last week's character sheet gave us a look at a Human Fighter, but that's only one possible Dungeons & Dragons build. Next up is a Dwarven Cleric, highlighting a few of the race's Fifth Edition stats and spellcasting abilities.

Presumably additional sheets are on the way, covering races like elves, halfings, and orcs, not to mention other magic-using classes.

Source: ow.ly

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In my experience I have found that a lot of the character sheets provided by the publishers are usually a tad over-designed. I prefer simpler, well organized sheets. This one doesn't look nearly as bad as some others I have seen from Wizards though.

Fappy:
In my experience I have found that a lot of the character sheets provided by the publishers are usually a tad over-designed. I prefer simpler, well organized sheets. This one doesn't look nearly as bad as some others I have seen from Wizards though.

A part of me hopes they will have a character maker site that can auto fill out the back with the relevant information with an auto-generated PDF, similar to how some sites do that with forms.

OF course, I also hope for blank PDFs. My handwriting is terrible, and the small font size of the last character sheets drove me nuts.

"Text Wall" is right. The front side of the sheet isn't too bad, but I really hope that the blank versions give some boxes to jot down the name of the background (and mechanical effects), the mechanical modifiers of your race/prestige class, and then leave the rest blank for extended equipment and notes. One thing in particular WotC is bad at is having space for the player to write down whatever they wish, be it a list of NPCs, the known clues for the quest, or even a spell list.

I like the streamlined appearance, but it looks like they're making you do a lot of the math off the sheet, which will be both good and bad.

Keep in mind that that wall of text isn't really anything I would consider as part of a character sheet at all since it's just a print out of what you would find in the PHB for your Race/Class/Background. You could easily replace it with a spell sheet, a description of your tragic backstory, a recipe for goat stew, etc. All of the actually important info(for a fighter, anyway) is on that first page. And as far as WotC goes, that is a pretty big improvement.

I'll probably still stick with Pathfinder tyvm. Why fix something that isn't broken? (all that much)
Also, I love PDFs that do the simple arithmetic for you. Makes leveling up a breeze.

captcha: hear me roar!
(no thanks, bad for the voice)

scotth266:
I like the streamlined appearance, but it looks like they're making you do a lot of the math off the sheet, which will be both good and bad.

Good point. One nice thing about the 4th edition sheets is that they had all the math there for your ability scores, defenses, basic attacks, etc. It was dead-easy to level up because you knew which little box would increase, then you carried that around the sheet. Sending the math to some notebook page tends to allow a lot more error, in my experience.

Could you explain what you think is bad about it? The worst I can think of is that it might clutter the sheet, but that's a problem that can be worked out in design; even these test sheets have a lot of unused space, and they include a ton of inefficiently-used space (for example, the proficiency and hit dice boxes).

The inventory section is awkward and the currency section takes up a ton of space. Other than that it's one of the better Wizard designs.

Like most character sheets, though, it doesn't give much space to track conditional modifiers to things like skills, saves, or senses. The attack section is nice, though.

All in all it looks fine. I've DMed D&D / Pathfinder for almost 20 years now (and design PNP material for a living) and I have no real interest in this edition, but I'm curious to see how well it does commercially.

Thunderous Cacophony:

Could you explain what you think is bad about it? The worst I can think of is that it might clutter the sheet,

Which is the big thing I didn't like about 4E's sheet. Yes, it had all the room to do the math, but it was hard to look at and finding things quickly wasn't easy unless you were very familiar with it.

I'd like something between what's being presented and what 4E's sheet was: something easy to read, but also easy to do the math on.

This is much better than the mess of a sheet they handed out for the Beta tests.

I actually really like this one. Finally, it seems like they've given enough room to write down class and race features. That was always way too small historically, in my opinion. Also, I'm not bothered by the smaller inventory space. In my games, inventory doesn't drastically change or get added too so much to warrant more space. Most of the time, junk gets sold in place of the new stuff.

Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet. This is a pregen from the starter set, and historically there is a huge difference. For a comparison, here's the starter sheet from 3.5...

https://scontent-b-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpf1/t1.0-9/q81/s720x720/10500585_10202136526071588_2836615566037920660_n.jpg

Please don't jump to conclusions based on the clickbait headline.

Harry Mason:
Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet. This is a pregen from the starter set, and historically there is a huge difference.

You're absolutely right! I'm ashamed I didn't catch that one.

Metadigital:

Harry Mason:
Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet. This is a pregen from the starter set, and historically there is a huge difference.

You're absolutely right! I'm ashamed I didn't catch that one.

Hey man, you're not the only one!

I think it looks good as a way to walk newbies through the process. I especially like the fact that the modifiers are in a larger font than the actual stats, I can't tell you how many new players I've had stare at a character sheet looking for a WIS modifier for like ten minutes.

Other than that, here's hoping they get the equipment section nonsense sorted out for the proper, long-form sheet. Otherwise, it's homebrew time!

GOD I'm excited for this game. I jumped ship to Pathfinder years ago and, if this edition lives up to its promise, it'll be like returning home to an old friend. Either that or returning home to an old friend who went insane while no one was looking and has started eating bugs and drawing murals in their feces.

In the meantime, let's look at more of that sexy new art. Mmm... Sexy...

image
ICE TO MEET YOU!

Harry Mason:
Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet. This is a pregen from the starter set, and historically there is a huge difference. For a comparison, here's the starter sheet from 3.5...

https://scontent-b-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpf1/t1.0-9/q81/s720x720/10500585_10202136526071588_2836615566037920660_n.jpg

Please don't jump to conclusions based on the clickbait headline.

I did mention that this is just the latest version and that it could undergo changes.

What's key are the mechanics the character sheet emphasizes. Even if it's just for the starter set, it gives an idea of what to expect going forward for the finished book.

Harry Mason:
GOD I'm excited for this game. I jumped ship to Pathfinder years ago and, if this edition lives up to its promise, it'll be like returning home to an old friend. Either that or returning home to an old friend who went insane while no one was looking and has started eating bugs and drawing murals in their feces.

Almost how I felt when I switched to 4th edition. It didn't help that it was right after I quit WoW.

I got into Pathfinder as well. Modified the hell out of it. Then modified it some more with another guy. Then some more. Eventually, it became its own stand alone system. Hope to have it in stores in a few years. If it weren't for that, I'd be more excited about D&D Next, but after developing my own system, I've come to realize how the new D&D is too afraid to tackle its core problems to offer anything really new to players. It looks like it'll be a step up from 3.5 at least, but really, 3.5 was pretty unplayable without massive DM intervention, so that's not saying much.

I want to be excited about a new edition of D&D. The art looks fantastic and the promise of new miniatures is alluring. It's just those "core D&D" rules that don't make any sense and are stubbornly resisting modification.

Page 2 is a bit wordy, but I rather like the first one! Not half bad, honestly~

Side note: Is there a website that helps you design a custom DnD style character sheet? Like, with your own text boxes, sections of your naming and design, etc? (Say, if I wanted to add an entire section of skill checks, for example)

Fanghawk:

Harry Mason:
Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet.

I did mention that this is just the latest version and that it could undergo changes.

You did, at the very end, but there was a wee bit of confusion on both the Facebook comments, this thread, and some people I linked this article to, going "Wait, this is it?"

It'd just be a shame if people thought this was the actual 5th edition character sheet and steered clear because it's so minimalist (and would thus represent simplistic rules). I mean, have you even seen the monstrosity in the Pathfinder starter box? YIKES.

http://panzerleader.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/pathfinder-bbcharsheet.jpg
Seriously. Yikes.

Metadigital:

I want to be excited about a new edition of D&D. The art looks fantastic and the promise of new miniatures is alluring. It's just those "core D&D" rules that don't make any sense and are stubbornly resisting modification.

Well, maybe at the very least it will give you a little spark of inspiration here and there! My own shelves are lined with RPGs I've never played that I keep around just to inspire my own game writing. Like, I have a copy of Shadowrun and I just sit and stare at the pictures in it like a little kid and go "OOH LASERGUNS!"

You high society types and your character sheets. Most of my characters are on standard paper. It's not without its disadvantages, I like putting what I want where I want.

cthulhuspawn82:
You high society types and your character sheets. Most of my characters are on standard paper. It's not without its disadvantages, I like putting what I want where I want.

I usually end up making my own character sheets with Excel. That way, not only is everything where I want it to be - but all the math is done for me once I type in the formulas.

Harry Mason:

Metadigital:

Harry Mason:
Y'all, this is NOT the new D&D character sheet. This is a pregen from the starter set, and historically there is a huge difference.

You're absolutely right! I'm ashamed I didn't catch that one.

Hey man, you're not the only one!

I think it looks good as a way to walk newbies through the process. I especially like the fact that the modifiers are in a larger font than the actual stats, I can't tell you how many new players I've had stare at a character sheet looking for a WIS modifier for like ten minutes.

Other than that, here's hoping they get the equipment section nonsense sorted out for the proper, long-form sheet. Otherwise, it's homebrew time!

GOD I'm excited for this game. I jumped ship to Pathfinder years ago and, if this edition lives up to its promise, it'll be like returning home to an old friend. Either that or returning home to an old friend who went insane while no one was looking and has started eating bugs and drawing murals in their feces.

In the meantime, let's look at more of that sexy new art. Mmm... Sexy...

image
ICE TO MEET YOU!

Given the xp gain seems like AD&D, I am a little wary. But I have converted to pathfinder recently and am not looking forward to what appears to be a mishmash of old and new.

BTW, why does the fighter need playing card proficiency?

Hmmm looks like they got rid of the abstract Background Skill Bonuses that had been in the playtest for awhile.

As someone who has been following this stuff, let me provide a public service and explain what the hell is going on.

1) These are indeed the sheets for the pregen characters from the Starter Set. There are three other character: Elf Wizard, Halfling Rogue and another Human Fighter who focuses on archery. The reason for these Race/Class combinations is because they are all that exist in the forthcoming free Basic rules. (There are certainly no orcs, although there will be half-orcs in the Player's Handbook.)

2) It has been confirmed that Page 1 of the sheet is the same as the final sheet that will also appear in Basic and the PHB. Page 2 is unique to the Starter Set, and is designed to hold almost all the info that player will need during play (minus spell rules). The final sheet will have a second page devoted to spellcasting and an optional third page with room for a portrait, more space for gear/magic items and other stuff.

3) "I like the streamlined appearance, but it looks like they're making you do a lot of the math off the sheet, which will be both good and bad."

Nope - there is almost no math to do in 5E. You roll a die, add your bonus and check against the DC. Everything you need is there.

4) "Like most character sheets, though, it doesn't give much space to track conditional modifiers to things like skills, saves, or senses. The attack section is nice, though."

Those things barely exist in 5E, so devoting much space to them is unnecessary.

5) Here's a video where the designers unbox the Starter Set and talk a fair bit about the character sheet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9pBZTyQ-iA

Any questions?

VoidWanderer:

BTW, why does the fighter need playing card proficiency?

Because rollplaying. That's why. It adds some character to him/her! Just like the average DEX and high CHA. There's more to life that min/maxing, mate!

 

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