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How do you fill out a d&d character sheet?

Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) is a popular tabletop roleplaying game that allows players to go on fantasy adventures and tell collaborative stories. An important part of playing D&D is creating a character, which requires filling out a character sheet with your character’s details, stats, equipment, and more. While it may seem daunting at first, learning how to properly fill out a D&D 5e character sheet sets you up for success in your campaigns.

Sections of the D&D Character Sheet

The official 5th edition D&D character sheet has quite a few sections, but can be broken down into these main elements:

  • Character Details – This includes name, class, race, background, alignment, etc.
  • Ability Scores – Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, Charisma
  • Skills
  • Saving Throws
  • Armor Class and Initiative
  • Hit Points and Hit Dice
  • Attacks and Spellcasting
  • Equipment
  • Features and Traits

Let’s go through each section step-by-step to learn how to enter your information accurately.

Character Details

In the upper right corner, fill out these basic details:

  • Character Name – Come up with a creative name for your character.
  • Class & Level – Select a class like fighter, wizard, rogue, etc. Start at level 1.
  • Background – Choose a background like soldier, sage, criminal, etc.
  • Player Name – Your real name!
  • Alignment – Typically good, neutral, or evil combined with lawful, neutral or chaotic.
  • Experience Points – Start at 0 XP as a beginning level 1 character.

Ability Scores

The six ability scores are Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. These core stats affect your character’s skills and abilities. Ways to determine starting scores include:

  • Standard Array – 15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8
  • Point Buy – Get 27 points to spend on custom scores.
  • Rolling 4d6 and dropping the lowest die.

Enter each score in the appropriate ability section. Modifiers are determined by subtracting 10 from the score and dividing by 2 (round down). For example, a Strength score of 15 has a +2 modifier.


Based on your class and background, you’ll get proficiency in certain skills. For each skill, mark whether you are proficient or not by filling in the bubble. You add your proficiency bonus to skills you are proficient in.

Saving Throws

Saving throws represent resisting certain types of dangers with either physical or mental fortitude. Based on your class, mark which saving throw abilities you are proficient in. You add your proficiency bonus to saving throws you are proficient in.

Armor Class and Initiative

Your Armor Class (AC) represents how hard you are to hit. It is determined by your armor, Dexterity modifier, and other effects. Your Initiative determines turn order in combat and is based on your Dexterity modifier.

Hit Points and Hit Dice

Your hit points (HP) determine how much damage you can take before going unconscious or dying. At 1st level, your HP is the highest number of your class Hit Die + your Con modifier. So for a fighter with +2 Con, it would be 10 (d10 Hit Die) + 2 = 12 HP.

Hit Dice represent how many dice you can roll to regain HP when resting. At lower levels, you have 1 Hit Die per level.

Attacks and Spellcasting

Spellcasters should list details on known spells and spell slots. Characters making weapon attacks should include their attack bonus (STR or DEX mod + Proficiency) and damage of their weapons.


List any weapons, armor, tools, and other equipment your character is carrying. You choose equipment based on your class and background. Calculate your total weight carried vs. your carrying capacity.

Features and Traits

Include any special features and traits gained from your race, class, background, etc. This helps you remember key capabilities of your character.

Describing Your Character

On the back or second page of the character sheet, write a physical description and backstory for your character. This allows you and the Dungeon Master to vividly imagine who your character is.

Some things to include:

  • Physical attributes like age, gender, height, weight, hair color, eye color, distinguishing marks, etc.
  • Personality traits and ideals
  • Key events from your character’s past
  • Motivations and goals

Helpful Tips

Here are some additional tips for filling out your first D&D character sheet:

  • Use pencil – You may gain XP and level up, get new equipment, or make other changes.
  • Include spell and equipment details – Write down casting times, durations, damage, range, etc.
  • Note resource uses – Track spell slots, rages, ki points, etc.
  • Double check calculations – Make sure your attack bonuses, skill modifiers, etc. are correct.
  • Leave room for growth – You don’t need to fill out all Hit Dice and features at lower levels.
  • Ask your DM questions – If you need help, ask your Dungeon Master for clarification.

Sample Filled-Out Character Sheet

Here is an example of how a 1st level fighter character sheet might look filled out:

Character Name Thorin Silveraxe
Class & Level Fighter 1
Background Soldier
Player Name Bob
Alignment Lawful Good
Experience Points 0

Ability Scores:

STR 16 (+3)
DEX 13 (+1)
CON 14 (+2)
INT 8 (-1)
WIS 12 (+1)
CHA 10 (+0)

Armor Class: 16

Initiative: +1

Hit Points: 12

Hit Dice: 1d10


  • Greatsword – +5 to hit, 2d6+3 slashing damage
  • Longbow – +3 to hit, 1d8+1 piercing damage


  • Greatsword, Longbow, 20 Arrows
  • Chain Mail, Shield
  • Explorer’s Pack, Rations (10 days)

Ready for Adventure

Creating your first D&D character is exciting! With a completed character sheet, you are ready to embark on epic adventures, gain experience points, find treasure, and tell memorable stories. Keep your sheet on hand during every gaming session and have fun shaping the destiny of your character. Happy roleplaying!