Character Creation & Leveling

Choose a Class

Your character class gives you class features—cool things your character can do—at 1st level as described in its features table. The class features table lists features you gain access to as your character levels up.

Your character class also gives you proficiencies, a game term that describes what kinds of equipment you are trained to use (such as armor, weapons, and tools) and what kinds of challenges you are best at handling (skills and saves).

Determine Ability Scores

At their core, characters are defined by six abilities:

  • Strength (STR), representing your physical might.
  • Dexterity (DEX), representing your agility and reaction time.
  • Constitution (CON), representing your endurance and physical fortitude.
  • Intelligence (INT), representing your ability to acquire and apply knowledge.
  • Wisdom (WIS), representing your intuition and mental fortitude.
  • Charisma (CHA), representing your self-confidence and your ability to influence others.

Each ability is assigned a number, called an ability score. Ability scores represent your various physical and mental abilities. Higher numbers in a score mean your character is better with that ability.

As you level up, you can increase these scores, but a PC can never have an ability score higher than 20. An average person has 10 in every ability score, so these numbers emphasize how powerful adventurers are!

Three Ways to Score

Method 1: Rolling

  • Roll four d6s. Find the lowest die, and throw it out. Then add up the remaining three dice to get your total. Write that number down on scratch paper.
  • Do this five more times until you have six totals between 3 and 18.
  • Assign those six numbers to the ability scores however you like.
  • Finally, add 2 to one score of your choice that is 16 or below and add 1 to one score of your choice that is 17 or below.

Method 2: Point-Buy

  • Start with 32 points to spend on your ability scores.
  • Each score costs a certain number of points. Find the cost of each potential score on the Point-Buy Cost table (For example, a score of 12 costs 4 points).
  • 18 is the highest ability score you can start with, and you can’t have a score lower than 8.
  • Buy one score for each of the six abilities.
  • Don’t add anything extra when you’re done here. These numbers are already balanced without adding more.

Point-Buy Cost


Method 3: Standard Array

To just get going, use the standard array. Start with six numbers: 16, 14, 14, 13, 10, and 8. Assign them as ability scores however you want. Again, don’t modify them any further. That’s it!

Find Ability Modifiers

Once you assign scores, use the following charts to figure out your ability modifiers. Ability modifiers are the most important part of your ability scores. As the name suggests, these modify your dice when you roll for things. You use modifiers much more than your score to calculate success or failure in the game.

Ability Modifiers

Ability ScoreModifierAbility ScoreModifier

Choose a Lineage

Choose your character’s lineage from the options in the Lineage section.

Choose a Heritage

Choose your character’s heritage from the options in the Heritage section.

Choose a Background

Choose your character’s background from the options presented in the Backgrounds section.

Starting Equipment

There are two methods for determining what equipment your character starts with.

Method 1: Take Class & Background Equipment

The simple way to get starting equipment is to take all the starting equipment listed in your base class description combined with the additional equipment listed in your background. Write the equipment from those two sources on your character sheet, and you’re ready to play!

Method 2: Determine Starting Wealth & Buy Equipment

The more involved method for determining starting equipment is to calculate your starting gold pieces (gp) by rolling 5d4 x 10 gp, and then purchase equipment using the equipment charts. Spend as much of your starting money as you want, then note any unspent gp on your character sheet along with your new equipment.

Leveling Up

Characters start at 1st level and can advance up to 20th level by gaining experience points (XP) during their adventures. By default, PCs start with 0 XP.

When your PC gains a new level, you gain access to the benefits listed in the progression table for your class at the new level. You also gain 1 hit die and more hit points.

To calculate these new hit points, roll the new hit die, add your CON modifier to the roll, and add the total to your total hit points. If you don’t want to roll, you can use the average hit die value (listed in each class description) plus your CON modifier.

Leveling Methods

Awarding XP

When a GM awards XP, they tally up the challenges that the PCs overcame during the session and tell players the amount at the end. The Level Advancement table details the XP you need to advance to new levels. Don’t reset the XP total after each level.

Level Advancement

Tracking Milestones

When a GM tracks milestones, PCs level up when they achieve a goal established by the GM.

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