Gaming Articles

Making an Awesome D&D Character: Step 3

A background is a mechanical concept and a backstory is the narrative of your character's life.

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Backgrounds & Backstory

A background when talking about D&D 5e is a mechanical term that describes what your character was doing before they took on their adventuring class. They are one of my favourite parts in the game because they can add so much flavour to your character with minimal effort. For example, you may be a fighter, but perhaps instead of being a soldier, you were guild artisan who is showcasing their wares. Instead of a wizard, you take the noble background and you are now a court wizard. It makes filling out a full character and their motivations so much easier.

A backstory on the other hand is the narrative account of how your character transitions from their background to their class. It also can detail any facet of your character’s lifeĀ  you want to include like family, friends, enemies, romantic partners, magical events that happened, expeditions you may have gone on, etc. The only limit is your creativity and the amount of time you can put into it.

See below for some backgrounds that may suit what you have in mind.

Resource for Backgrounds:

  • Backgrounds from the D&D 5e Wikia
  • Player’s Handbook

Resource for Backstory:




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