The Best Dungeons & Dragons Character Sheets To Start Your Game In Style

Ann-Marie Cahill


Ann-Marie Cahill will read anything and everything. From novels to trading cards to the inside of CD covers (they’re still a thing, right?). A good day is when her kids bring notes home from school. A bad day is when she has to pry a book from her kids’ hands. And then realizes where they get it from. The only thing Ann-Marie loves more than reading is travelling. She has expensive hobbies.

There’s a special market selling information about the best Dungeons & Dragons character sheets. Okay, so that statement isn’t completely true, but it is almost universally agreed across every edition of the play: creating your D&D character is hard. It’s probably the hardest part of the game; everything else is fun and creative and adventurous and hilarious and…well, you get the idea. The good news is creating your character can be all of this as well! And a great character sheet can make your gameplay even better.

The truth is that character sheets are a very personal experience. Of course, there is the official version with everything you need on the basic level. But part of the appeal of D&D is how it is accessible to people across all walks of life. So that means we all have our own strengths to work with — be it organizational skills, creative skills, or simple data tracking.

Over the years, I have learned there are many opinions on what makes the best Dungeons & Dragons character sheets. And it will continue to vary as we learn new tricks from playing with others. Here are some of the best character sheets I have found so far, including a few tweaks we have made over the years.

The Original Standard D&D 5E Character Sheet

Original Standard D&D 5E Character Sheet
Original Standard D&D 5E Character Sheet from official D&D website

This is most likely your starting point: the original character sheets provided on the resources page on the official Wizards of the Coast website. For new players, 5E means 5th Edition — the current edition of rules, characters, and campaigns for D&D games. For a quick rundown on the basics of D&D, check out Annika’s How To guide here. She includes a great summary on how to roll up a character.

The official website has a pack of character sheets to download for free, including Ready-to-Play Character Sheets (saving you some work) and cleared forms to create your grandest character of all time. If you are playing online, you can choose the “fillable” PDF version.

Pros: It’s basic and simple. It does the job and covers all of the essentials. It’s free to use, both printed and online.

Cons: It’s really basic. Sometimes you can feel like you are missing something, and it takes a little while to feel comfortable moving around the sheet without constantly referencing the much bigger guides.

The Best D&D Character Sheets by Class

D&D Class Character Sheet
Credit: Emmet Byrne / Dungeon Masters Guild

There are many differences between each of the classes, so naturally, it would benefit to have a character sheet to match your class. For example, my Barbarian Dwarf does not really need so much space for spells, but I love having room for all of my weapons. There is also room to expand on your subclass and abilities. While these character sheets aren’t free, they are very cheap for the work entailed. You can purchase them from Dungeon Master Guild for 50¢ each or $5 for The Bundle. This includes character lists for every class (including The Artificer), and extra sheets for martial multi-classing, casting, character background, abilities, and wild shapes (for druids). Credit to Emmet Byrne (remember this name, you’ll see it again shortly).

Pros: The character sheets are specific for your class, with added space where you need it most.

Cons: It’s not free.

The Best Dyslexic-Friendly Character Sheets

Simplified D&D character sheet with dyslexic-friendly font

Having dyslexic-friendly character sheets can help build confidence in the gameplay, which simply makes for a better playing environment for everyone! Shout out to the greater D&D community for creating various options for those with dyslexia. I found this fantastic collection on Reddit, created using OpenDyslexic as the font. The original creator (THANK YOU) also added a Dyslexic-friendly spell sheet, all with the purpose of making D&D more accessible for another player’s children. Wherever and whoever you are, we salute you.

Pros: Uses the font OpenDyslexic. Includes spell sheet.

Cons: I can’t find the original creator to thank them.

The Best Character Sheets for Kids

Kid-friendly D&D character sheet bundle graphic

Speaking of children, don’t let the character sheets deter you from indoctrinating the children!! D&D is a fantastic game to play with kids, allowing them the freedom and autonomy to direct the story. I guarantee you will learn a lot from the kids, as they consider options most adults would never have considered themselves! This includes how they lay out their stats and reference their abilities. 

Emmet Byrne has created a small bundle of character sheets suitable for kids and available on Dungeon Master Guild. It simplifies a lot of the core information, including ability bonuses and skills. It is also available with colour-coding, to make it easier for kids to reference (especially if they are overwhelmed with a scenario). 

Pros: They provide easy access and clear layout for young kids. The sheets were created as part of the adventure An Ogre and His Cake by Christopher Walz and Emmet Byrne (available through the same link). Both are free, but you can choose to pay what you want with all funds going to Extra Life.

Cons: No cons seen as yet. 

a graphic of a kid-friendly D&D character sheet
Credit: Zoltar / Sage Advice

I also really like this kid-friendly D&D character sheet from Zoltar on D&D Sage Advice. Despite being titled “kid-friendly”, it’s a fantastic design for new players of any age. The headings for each section have been re-worded to give a far more practical description. For example, “I NEED TO HEAL” and “THEY’RE AFTER ME”. Bonus points for the dice description at the top.

Pros: This gives a great explanation on how to use your stats, not simply what they are.

Cons: It’s limited to two pages and the absolute basics.

Character Sheets Just for the Cute

Cute, stylized D&D character sheet
Credit: BriarLantern

Okay, this one is purely for aesthetics, but it is so damn cute! And it’s free for personal use! BriarLantern has shared Character Sheets, Background Sheets, and Spell Sheets. Choose between pink or black colours — both come with the same adorable illustrations featuring dragons, rabbits, and cupcakes. All of the D&D info is there as well. And if you’re into some dark ritual magic, there is one class-specific sheet for Warlocks.

Pros: Adds a whimsical touch to your character play. So gosh-darn cute!

Cons: It’s going to use up all of your printer ink.

You know what would look great with the best Dungeons & Dragons character sheets? Some matching shiny click-clack (a.k.a. dice). Check out the best D&D dice to match your character class here. Oh, and better carry a spare. The dice can be fickle at times — says the dwarf barbarian with at least three sets in dice jail.