This is a collection of great tools and resources I use when creating characters, adventures or worlds or simply sat at the table playing the game 🙂
I’ll add to the list as I find more great resources. It would be great to get suggestions of what helps you design, run and play table top RPGs.
DnD5e Wiki is nicely set out with everything you need for character builds and doesn’t spam with lots of pop ups like some DnD sites tend to.
Some information can be accessed without logins or purchases, but it’s also available elsewhere.
I mainly use DnDBeyond for its character creation tool and it’s advanced spell search filters.
A growing database of adventures for DND and other TTRPG of the genre. Nicely detailed search filters. Looking for an adventure with a particular item, there’s a filter for that. Pathfinder 1e modules are listed, however, 2e isn’t on the filter list yet.
Dungeon magazine, (which Paizo took over printing for Wizards of the Coast in 2002) is one of the sources you can filter on.
And all the old Dungeon magazines are available at this archive. (I’ll add that I don’t know if they have copyright. Let me know if i need to remove the link.). The wider site is dedicated to saving gaming history, including table top RPGs, computer game magazines and more.
Generators and Lists
I could spend a long while on this site (and have done) spinning the random generator for stores, towns, NPCs, treasure, world maps and more. If you keep going. The descriptions are especially great.
Resources are available for AD&D through to 5e and Pathfinder 1e and system neural. Most of the 1e tools also work for 2e (remember to convert the prices down as 1 gold in 1e is the same as 1 silver in 2e).
Some of my favourites for sparking the imagination are the ‘My Random Campaign’, based on an idea by Matt Colville, the ‘Random Generator, particularly random places and ancient tomes and perhaps best of all, the Random Inn Generator, complete with a description of the outside and inside, a fully priced menu, and adventure launching rumours and NPCs.
Lovely randomised and adjustable maps of dungeons and towns to inspire you.
Anvaka Street Map
Use any real place as the basis for your RPG village, town, or city.
This great and easy to use tool plugs into OpenStreetMap to show you all the streets and paths in the chosen location.
Just think of a real world place that is similar to what you want, maybe with a river, bridges and open space and get your zoomable map to serve as the basis of your fantasy settlement.
There’s a whole sub reddit on the random map generator genre
Great lists of 100 for DnD style campaigns. One of my favourites is the ‘100 Druidic treasures’.
Back to RPGBot, this time for a series of lists for rolling up a random dungeon.
Reddit World Building
System neutral discussion for building a world, whether for artists, writers or table top RPGs.
Behind The Name
For character creation (or naming your own children), Behind The Name is a great resource that has been around for a long while now. The search function has really detailed filters, dividing names up by cultures and meanings and allowing you to search based on letter or syllable pattern, what the name rhymes with and much more.
This link takes you to the random name generator, which even includes an option to generate a brief life history along with the name.
You want a character portrait to go with everything else you’ve worked on? There are some great Pinterest boards, collecting works from DeviantArt and other art sharing sites.
Easiest way to find what you’re after is just search in your friendly neighbourhood search engine for the race (ancestry in PF2e terms), class, then add the word Pinterest, such as, ‘human fighter Pinterest’. This will give you a selection of curated image boards to enjoy browsing through.
Whatever stage you’re at with creating PCs/NPCs, wizard stores, ancient swords, hamlets through to vast cities, or whole worlds, whether for DND, Pathfinder, or perhaps your next novel, the above links should provide what you are after, or at least give a big spark to the imagination.
My favourite of the above for both pure enjoyment and utility has to be Donjon.
My wife used Donjon’s 5e Random Generator to create a list of forty or so random items (select ‘Trinkets’).
From this list she selected a dozen or so and wove them into a back story linking them all together to create the last chaotic scene before a wizard fled his laboratory. The room was then buried over time in a thick layer of filth. The room itself was deep in her amazing adaptation of Undermountain (drawing more from the brilliant AD&D box version than 5e’s).
My detective necromancer (soloing the Mad Mage’s dungeon) burnt away the current monstrous occupants with magical energy and so purged the filth, by chance revealing the room’s underlying ‘crime’ scene. They began work on piecing the complex mystery together over three sessions to reveal an almost imperceptible treasure that could not be released… but I found a way. As Erik Mona said (in 2019 Paizocon’s ‘The Wedding of Ostog the Unslain’), ‘I don’t cast spells… I cast spell combinations!’ 😉