Dungeon Master Assistance

A place to share thoughts and ideas about Dungeons and Dragons

D&D 5E – Character Wealth per Level

If a character doesn’t start at level 0, what should they start with in terms of gold and magic items?

Whenever a PC dies and the player rolls up a new character, I always have the new character start at the same level as the rest of the party. The same goes whenever a new player joins an existing game. So when they roll up their new higher level character I have them start with their first level inventory and any appropriate equipment based on their class and level. I also give them magic items similar in power to the items the other PCs have.

However, sometimes it is not that easy. That is when I use the following.

Starting Gold:

I give them gold based on their level. They start with their level 1 gold based on their class, and then add the following gold based on their starting level.

Level Gold
1 0
2 376
3 751
4 1,504
5 2,632
6 16,267
7 29,902
8 43,537
9 57,172
10 70,807
11 84,442
12 156,842
13 229,242
14 301,642
15 374,042
16 446,442
17 518,842
18 1,190,892
19 1,862,942
20

2,534,992

They spend from this to equip their character. They can spend as much of their gold on magic items as they choose up to the limit shown below.

Magic Items:

I use this for Magic Item Prices:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8XAiXpOfz9cMWt1RTBicmpmUDg/view

Note that this is for newly created characters only.
Your character gets 2 points for each character level. You can buy magic items from the provided list (I often modify the list based on the campaign) based on the chart below.

Rarity Cost
Common 2 points
Uncommon 4 points
Rare 8 points
Very Rare 16 points
Legendary 36 points

You can’t have more than one of any non-consumable magic item. For every combat item you get, you must get at least one noncombat item before selecting another combat item.

Example: If you are 8th level you will have 16 points to spend. You can get 1 very rare, or 2 rare, or 8 common, or 1 rare and 1 uncommon and 2 common magic items, or any other combination that adds up to 16. Half or more must be noncombat items.

D&D 5E – Nautical Adventures [re-post]

Ship-Book_Cover

Rules for conducting a seafaring campaign in D&D. Including rules for Ship-to-Ship Combat.

This is a re-post. I first posted this in 2015. It has been by far my most downloaded file. My records for downloads doesn’t go back farther than July 2019, but just in 2020 there were over 30,000 downloads. For any of my followers that may have missed it, here is a copy of the original post. For those who have downloaded this and used in your games I am very happy that this has been so well received. So here again is – Nautical Adventures.

You can download a free copy here: 5E_Nautical_Adventures.pdf

This is a complete re-write of the Ship to Ship Combat rules I published before (3.5 version here).

In keeping with the spirit of 5e, this  is  not  about  conducting  massive  sea battles, moving small model ships around on a hex battle map exploring tactics and the intricacies of wind and sail. Rather this is about what the PCs can do with ships. Ship-to-ship  battles  do  take  up  the  majority  of  the  pages here, but the battles are from the point of view of the player  characters  on  board  their  ship.  Care  has  been taken to assure each payer has something to contribute each round of ship-to-ship combat. Each player controls one of their ship’s officers. That officer can be his or her PC  or  it  may  be  an  NPC  and  he  has  several  actions available to him that are specific to that officer.

I copied liberally from Wizards of the Coast’s 1997 publication “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons of Ships and the Sea”. I also got a lot of good ideas from Pathfinder’s “Skull and Shackles”  (their “Wormwood Mutiny” adventure path will work with these rules for those of you who want a good Pirates campaign.)
I also found a lot of good information in Kenzer and Company’s “Salt and Sea Dogs”.

A special thanks to Shawn at http://tribality.com/ for his series on Naval Combat for D&D 5th edition. He got me to thinking seriously about how to keep all of the players involved in naval combat.

D&D 5E – Printer’s Key

How do I know if I have the first printing on the Monster Manual or a later printing?

If I go to my local game store to buy a new copy of the Monster Manual (or the Player’s Hand book or …) because my copy is worn out, I want to make sure that I get the latest printing so it will contain all of the latest updates and reversions. But when I get there how do I know which printing of the book is on the shelf?

One way that usually works on D&D books, and most others, is to look for the printer’s key, also known as the number line. You can typically find it on the second or third page just under the ISBN number.

The example shown above on the left is a first edition. The printer’s key is:
9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Numbers are removed with subsequent printings, so if “1” is seen then the book is the first printing of that edition. If it is the second printing then the “1” is removed, meaning that the lowest number seen will be “2”.

In the example images above the one on the right is the 11th printing.

D&D 5E – Jump Calculator

I found this great tool to answer the question “How far (or how high) can my character jump”.
[Can someone tell me who created this so I can give them credit?]

https://fexlabs.com/5ejump/

D&D 5E – Encounter Size Tables

Tables for Determining Encounter Size

This is for Dungeon Masters. I created it a few months ago and have found it very useful when creating encounters for my 5th Edition Dungeons and Dragons games. Using guidelines found in the Dungeon Master’s Guide I worked on the math to come up with simple tables that I could reference to make the encounter neither too hard nor too easy for my Player Characters.

There are separate tables for 3, 4, 5, or 6 characters of any level (1 through 20). Just find the table for the number of PCs – their average character level – and if you want it to be an easy, medium, hard or deadly encounter. There is also an “Any Level” encounter table if you want to use that. Then read across the table to find how many monsters you will need based on the monsters challenge rating (CR).

This makes for a lot of tables. Each of these single page PDF files has a separate table for Any Level encounters, Easy encounters, Medium encounters, Hard encounters, and Deadly encounters.

PC Levels 1-5 for 3 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 1-5 for 4 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 1-5 for 5 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 1-5 for 6 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 6-10 for 3 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 6-10 for 4 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 6-10 for 5 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 6-10 for 6 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 11-15 for 3 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 11-15 for 4 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 11-15 for 5 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 11-15 for 6 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 16-20 for 3 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 16-20 for 4 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 16-20 for 5 characters: Download HERE
PC Levels 16-20 for 6 characters: Download HERE

There is also a single PDF file that contains all of the above: Download HERE

If you find these useful let me know.
Enjoy!

D&D 5E – Character Sheet with Dice Rolling

5E – Dice Rolling Character Sheets

The pandemic has made a change to the way I am running D&D games. Running a virtual game of Dungeons and Dragons made me realize how useful it would be if your Player’s Character Sheet would roll your the dice for you. So I took my Character Sheets (you can find then HERE) and figured a way to to add dice rolling. These are my results..

Download a sheet by clicking on the underlined word.

DICE ROLLING Character Sheets: For each class there is a 4 page character sheet: Artificer, Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard
Class Feature Sheets: These are the same feature sheets that are available on my previous Character Sheets post, repeated here for your convenience. Artificer, Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard
Simple DICE ROLLING Character Sheet:This is a 2 page character sheet if you don’t need the class information: download it  HERE
Multi-class DICE ROLLING Character Sheet:This has 4 general pages plus an additional 12 pages – one for each class in the Player’s Handbook: download it HERE

Magic Item Record Sheet: The character sheets may not provide enough space to track all of your character’s magic items. If your character requires more space than available on this one page simply copy the file under a different name for each page required. You can scroll the text if the magic item description is too long to fit in the box. If you intend to print the page you should abbreviate long descriptions to fit in a single box, or split the description across two or more boxes. download it HERE

Using the Dice Rollers

I tried several free PDF viewers, and the one that works best with these is Adobe Reader. I recommend you download your Character Sheet and use Adobe Reader to fill it out.

Box by box instructions for filling in the Character Sheets can be found HERE. The only difference is that on these sheets clicking on any red text will generate and display a dice roll.

On the upper right corner of each page there is spot that looks like this  #____   Previously, this is where you could put a version number if you had multiple versions of the same sheet. This has been re-purposed to display the results of any dice roll you may indicate just below that line. For example if you enter 4d12+6 and then click on the red = sign it will roll four 12 sided dice, add them together and add 6 to the total. Above the line it will display the results of that roll. Above that it will show the result of each die rolled. This same space on page 1 is also used to display the results of an ability check, a saving throw, a skill check, or an initiative check. The results of an initiative check will also be displayed in the initiative box. You can override the number in the initiative box by typing in a different number if need be.

The attack bonus box for each weapon will now roll 1d20 and add the attack bonus to the roll. It displays the result of the roll in the same box. There is also an ADV (advantage) and a DIS (disadvantage) box that you can check to roll 2d20 and pick the highest (for advantage) or lowest (for disadvantage) of the two before adding the attack bonus. If a natural 1 is rolled (for advantage two natural 1s must be rolled) it will display MISS in red letters. If a natural 20 is rolled (for disadvantage two natural 20s must rolled) it will display HIT in green letters and will check the CRIT box.

The damage box for each weapon will now roll the indicated number of dice of the indicated size and add the indicated bonus. It displays the result of the roll in the same box. It also shows the results of each individual die roll. If the CRIT (critiacl hit) box is checked the number of dice rolled will be doubled.

For spellcasting characters, clicking on the spell attack modifier (on page 4) will make a spell attack roll and display the results of that roll on the #____ line at the top of that page.

D&D 5E – Magic Item Record Sheet

I have come to realise that my character record sheets (HERE) do not provide enough space to track all of the magic items your character may acquire during your campaign. Rather than adding this sheet to those character record sheets, I am providing this sheet as a separate download. If your character requires more space than available on this page simply copy the file under a different name for each page required.

This is a form-fallible Magic Item Record Sheet for keeping a list with descriptions of your Dungeons and Dragons player character’s magic items.

This was created for use on your monitor during play; you can scroll the text if the magic item description is too long to fit in the box. If you intend to print the page you should abbreviate long descriptions to fit in a single box, or split the description across two or more boxes.

Enjoy!

D&D 5E – Pre-made Character Sheets

I just discovered this great resource from the Digital Dungenmaster. He has made available Pre-made Character Sheets for levels 1-20, every class and every archetype.

You can find them HERE.

D&D 5E – Starting Equipment

What equipment do I start with?

Many that are new to this game find equipping their character to be difficult. Even using an on-line tool such as “D&D Beyond” can be confusing.

It’s really fairly simple. First you must choose a class and a background for your character. Here is an example using the 5E version of the Player’s Hand Book to equip a Cleric with an Acolyte background:

-EITHER-
If you want to simply use the standard equipment do this:
1) Go to the “Class Features” section for your chosen class (“Cleric” in this example is on page 57). Look under “Equipment” in this section to find your list of starting equipment.
2) Then go to the section for the background that you have chosen (“Acolyte” in this example is on page 127). Look under “Equipment” in this section to find a list of the rest of your equipment and starting gold pieces.

-OR-
If you would rather select all of your own equipment you can do this:
1) Go to the “STARTING WEALTH BY CLASS” table (on page 143) to determine your starting gold. For a cleric it reads 5d4 x 10gp. You simply roll five 4 sided dice, add the result together and multiply by 10.
2) Go shopping! Using the tables for “Armor”(p. 145), “Weapons”(p. 149), “Adventuring Gear”(p. 150) and “Tools”(p. 154). You can equip your character using your starting gold to purchase what you like. You will not likely want to buy a mount or other animal, tack, harness, drawn vehicle, or any trade goods – but if you do there are tables with prices listed for those as well.

-OR-
If if you want me to do it for you:
1) Go to my post HERE
2) Download a Ready-To-Play first level character sheet for whichever race and class you want to play. If you don’t want to use my sheet, you can just reference the equipment on page 2 to use on your preferred character sheet.

Now your character is equipped to start his first adventure!

D&D 5E – 3D Distances Table

How to easily determine the distance between points in 3D space.

“My character is 50 feet away from the base of a 60 foot cliff and firing my shortbow (range 80/320). How far away is the target standing on top of the cliff? Do I have to roll at disadvantage or is it still short range?”
“I have a fly speed of 60 feet. My opponent is flying 45 feet away (as measured on the battlemat) and is also 25 feet higher than me. Can I fly to within 5 foot of him on my turn?”

I have been using a simple technique to quickly determine the distance at my table. First I determine the horizontal distance and the vertical distance. Take 1/2 the shorter of the two (rounded down) and add it to the longer. When all of these distances are in 5 foot increments and the distances are less than 50 feet it works fairly well, but it obviously has its limitations.

Another option is to use the Pythagorean theorem, but my math isn’t all that good.

You could have a calculator at the table. One with trig functions would be useful.

Some people keep a link to a Pythagorean Theorem Calculator website on their device. Here is a good one:
https://www.omnicalculator.com/math/pythagorean-theorem

I decided that the easiest way for me would be to have a simple look-up table printed out and available at the table when we played, so I created this one.

Download your free copy HERE