The Final Result in a 3 Month Study... How D&D Works.


Introduction: The Final Result in a 3 Month Study... How D&D Works.

I have been away from Instructables for about 3 months those 3 months I have studied how D&D works...and in that time, I have learned how the game works...and now I share that with you!

Lets get started.

Step 1: Step One: Beginners Guide to D&D (1357 Paged PDF)

I have gathered all of the text and tutorials by WotC (Wizards of the Coast) website, to make a powerful 1357 Paged PDF all on D&D and a new website...It should be the most time consuming thing that I have done so far...but after 6 grueling hours, I have finally put work and effort into reward and I have shared my reward to the world on my new website!

BTW: My other websites have taken up too much bandwidth, so I have deleted them to correct my bandwidth problem...they weren't all that popular... sorry :(

Here is the website...

If you are in need of dice, some websites sell role-playing dice for next to nothing, and you can buy 100 role-playing dice for 28 USD... (called pound o' dice)

And the downloads section stores the download to this monstrous 1,357 Paged PDF
(6.05 MB in size) (45 Kilobits per Page of Disk Space)

This should take some time to completely read, but in a legal note... I did not create the text of the PDF, I just took the free online D&D tutorials that were on free download on the WotC website, and just copied and pasted them onto a Word Document, and from there proceeded to export the huge document as a PDF.

Well now that you have gotten the PDF lets move onto the next step...

Step 2: Step Two: Creating Your Character

As it says in the 1357 Paged PDF that you will have some serious consequences for leaving any statistic at 0, and some spells and unfortunate events can take some serious damage on your Statistics, to have a 0 on any statistic you can either become a still object unable to move, and breathe, or become a comatose vegetable, or for the worst, become dead...

You should have a solid Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intellect, Charisma, and Wisdom, just in case of these unfortunate events becoming a tragedy.

You have to roll the d4 die 5 times in a row and add up all of your results, and then repeat the 5 rolls 6 times, then after that you can just randomly set either result for any statistic.


I rolled these numbers...

12, 14, 9, 7, 11, and a 10

Or you could just use the following numbers

16, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10
These numbers are balanced in all races and classes, and it saves you time to use them, but I prefer doing things myself...I was taught to be independent, and that is what I did...

Now according to my Class and Race, I should be able to set these numbers according to my abilities...lets use a Wizard as our example...

I am a level 17 Dwarf Wizard, therefore my AC for being small has a positive modifier, therefore I am harder to hit, making solid attack nearly impossible.

My statistics are as shown, with my choice...

STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7
INT: 12
CHA: 14
WIS: 10

Therefore according to my ability I will set my Charisma to the highest roll, therefore 14 has been set to my main attribute, wizards need charisma to perform certain spells... the bigger the charisma, the more options when it comes to casting spells.

Then my Intellect is next in line, the 2nd biggest value, the importance of my intellect is to have more mana, therefore I can use more spells, because I have enough mana to perform those spells. And being a wizard I automatically have a feature called "Mana Boost" That will boost the amount of mana that I have, to keep ranged magical attacks longer, and being a Wizard, if I make a complete save (Fortitude) roll of a d20 die. I can completely refill my used up mana, however I can also buy the spell "Mana Regain" for 2,500 GP.

Then my dexterity is 3rd in line, the importance of a well balanced dexterity is important when it comes to maneuvering twisted dungeons, therefore making me a harder target to attack with a meele, and a ranged attack. Because I am harder to hit, and I have the use of magic attacks instead of a meele defense mechanism, I don't really have any need to keep a high Strength, but I need it to be better than the lowest number, just in case that I fail to save, and I don't have the needed mana to perform my "Mana Regain" spell... I might have to resort to a meele defense.

My constitution is set to the lowest value, but I wouldn't recommend anyone else trying at this daring attempt, I was just being a show-off, but since I have the AC boost of at least +4 to +6 for being a Dwarf, and for being a wizard, I can also obtain another spell that could revive my character, or just make a save (Fortitude) with a d20 die.

If you want to look over the PDF you downloaded in the previous step, you can scroll down to the 29th page of the PDF you downloaded to find the classes, and from there there is also a race list.

But for now lets just assume you are a wizard with all of these attributes, and work onto the next step...


1045 + Has Races for your character

29+ Has Classes for your character

Step 3: Step 3: Rolling for Your Character

According to your characters Race, and Class, will determine your AC and your Fortitude roll...

According to my Intellect being 12 my AC becomes 7, and being small means that a modifier of + 6 added to my AC (13) Means that you have to roll a 13 or more on a d20 die to hit my character.

And my Fortitude for being a level 17 is 5, and my Ref Save is 5, and my Will Save is 10.

I have to stick to my Will Save to be 100% confident in a successful save. So I have to roll 10 or more on a d20 die to regain my health and mana, and become immune to some spells and unfortunate events.

All of this is in the PDF you have downloaded, just find your classes from pages 29 + and from there you can find your Fortitude and Armor Class (AC)

Therefore my characters attributes are...

STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7
INT: 12
CHA: 14
WIS: 10

AC: 13
Fortitude: 10

And by now you should have a name for your character...

Name: John Doe the Uncreative Named WIzard
Level: 17

Class: Wizard
Race: Dwarf (+ 6 AC)

STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7
INT: 12
CHA: 14
WIS: 10

AC: 13
Fortitude: 10

This is the 3/4th mark of having a passable character, so by now you should have a pen with a used piece of paper (For mathematical purposes only)

So now we can move onto the next step...

Step 4: Finding Some Near-perfect Resources for Your Game (DM's Only)

Remember the website from my other instructables, where I went to generate dungeons, and this link is important, as well as a name generator from another website... here are the websites...

and the generators...

So... lets work onto your adventure...

To have a near-perfect adventure, you don't need to spend thousands on special 3d tile sets, or gameboards, all you need is a creative imagination and a group of people to accept the quests that you throw at them...

By now you should have at least 3 quests for your PC's (Player Characters) to accept, some quests might not be accepted immediately, you just have to make the quest sound better than "Rescue a town from Monsters"

Lets work on a quest... this is just an example:

"Bodyguard an Innocent Stranger from Demons"

The objective is to bodyguard the stranger when he/she goes from a town to another town, however this quest pays 15,000 GP to be evenly split between each a token of gratitude from the innocent stranger.

The twist of the quest is that the stranger is more than just human, he/she might have a sinister plan for removing each PC from the face of the earth.

The promise is at least 15,000 Gold for all PC's, but the problem is, the monsters that are fighting are under the command of a bigger, and more powerful enemy, like a boss enemy. All that is needed to know about Demons are in the PDF that you downloaded in the 1st step of this instructable. Including the fact that Demons don't attack without a command from their leader, so the innocent traveler might have attempted something sinister enough to be targeted by the boss demon, the demon that is controlling it's minions to attack a humble traveler... or is this traveler more than just humble?

You can by now complete the quest information, and from there you can create a scenario from this.

So when you have created up to 3 quests, you can now set the enemies of the quest, in my example quest, I am going to choose a total of 5 different enemies...

Shape-Shifter (traveler)
and the boss, which is a King Demon (A more powerful demon ranked higher than all of the minions that it can command)

You must battle Demons, Liches, Imps, and a King Demon, with the Traveler being a Shape-Shifter.

All of the tension is required in making a good quest, the more tension the better, therefore taking fantasy, and turning it into a reality as you work the nerves of your players, this is a sign of being an excellent Dungeon Master (DM)

To be a Dungeon Master you must know enough about the 3 main Classes, and 3 main Races, with enough knowledge of your monsters, and some valuable resources to obtain more knowledge about the NPC's (Non-Player Characters)

The 3 Main Classes are...


Therefore you might have to know 6 classes, but they are almost similar, but some attributes about these classes are different, therefore more perspective in a fantasy world that makes Dungeons and Dragons an addictive game.

The 3 Main Races are...


Each of these 3 races have been in the Dungeons and Dragons game since the first opening of their Rulebook came out in 1974...

These are important races to consider when making a character, all 3 of them are a great choice for beginners when making a character...

Once you know all that is needed to know to become a DM, then you can test your DM ability, by having up to 4 PC's and 3 to 5 quests...just keep the tension in your quests, and the effort should pay off over time...

Try to get the PC's to give Constructive-Criticism when judging your DM skills... it might help you achieve your DM skills by bettering them...just give it a try, and be confident, never with your head down, but your spirits up, and consider the advice of the Constructive-Criticism
(consider the advice only if it helps you, never consider harming yourself or others in any way...)

Now to the next step...

Step 5: Finding the Other 1/3 of Your Character...

The other 1/3 of your character includes Listening skills, in which you can roll a d20 die to find your listening skills...

According to Page 1066 of the PDF you have downloaded in the first step of this Instructable, the listen check can go to d30...some people only buy the range of d4 to d20, but online substitutes can help...

With that page in mind lets find your Hit Points and Mana Points...

According to my character for being a Dwarf, I get a bonus of +2 Constitution and -2 Charisma (Being a wizard and a dwarf is harder than being a human wizard)

So my stats are...

STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7+2
INT: 12
CHA: 14-2
WIS: 10

Once you find all of that out on pages 29 + and 1045 + (Classes and Races) you can conclude the rest of the work is figuring out the actual numbers...

For my character my Hit Points is determined by my constitution, therefore you can roll a d8 die to find your hp gain from each level up, and the + 2 modifier is also added to your roll, which is d8 + 2 in my case...

I roll at least 3 minimum each level up... therefore I can have at least 51 HP minimum...


HP = 51 - 170

and for mana, my intellect will be greatly improved by being a wizard (+ 2)


STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7+2
INT: 12+2
CHA: 14-2
WIS: 10

I can roll a d10 die for being a wizard, so my minimum is at least 3 again...


Mana = 51 - 221

Therefore... I am completed with my character...

Name: John Doe the Uncreative Named WIzard
Level: 17
Class: Wizard
Race: Dwarf (+ 6 AC)

STR: 9
DEX: 11
CON: 7
INT: 12
CHA: 14
WIS: 10

AC: 13
Fortitude: 10
Hit Points: 51 - 170 (You must roll for an exact value)
Mana Points: 51 - 221 (You must roll for an exact value)

So that concludes the character making session of this instructable, so lets work on valuable resources...

Step 6: Conclusion: Downloading a Full D&D Starters Application Kit...

This is the direct link to my full D&D kit (.zip)

This concludes my newest Instructable...I hope that this all helps you beginners out there, I have taken 3 months of solid study to figure this stuff out, and took time out of my life to bring all of you this instructable...and I can finally rest :D

Thank you :D

PS: The Edits of this Tutorial require that I should at least have a link to a dice roll simulator... and here is the best one!


This is by far the best site for the dice roll simulators, not because it is made by the people who own the rights to Dungeons and Dragons, but it has all you need, and it is fast, with an automatic counter, that automatically sums up all of your rolls...

You can get some Dice Roll simulators from character generators when you unzip the D&D kit...just in case your internet goes haywire... but beware of the nasty popup from one of the character generators + updater...

PPS: And comments have led this edit, you would need to have a legitimate Rule-Book, even if you have all of the tutorials that the internet could possibly offer, I made mistakes, and I still do, and the same for every tutorial... Just in case carry around an Official Rule-Book...

If you are going to be a DM (Dungeon Master) You must always have a Rule-Book...its no exception in most cases...



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    20 Discussions

    I have answered your problems, from Dice Issues to Having your Rule-Books with you, I am still going to constantly update this Instructable, so if you see an error (that has nothing grammatical) I can update it for you...

    Constructive Criticism is always accepted, and updated on my Instructables, nasty and rude comments are unnecessary, and will not go anywhere on the Instructable...

    1 reply

    For anyone reading this article. The information in here is VASTLY outdated and needs a complete overhaul to the game.

    Playing 2nd, 3rd, or 4th edition I would say over 75% of this guide doens't apply anymore.

    From the very Weird ways of rolling dice, to the suggestion of stats on a wizard (con 7/ low int), Terminology, ect... has many errors in it. I would do a complete revamp of the entire guide. The guide isn't very old, 3rd edition was out before this was created.

    To figure your stats, you take a d4 die (or according to my method, take a single d6 die, and modify your result by 1d6 - 2 to have the maximum of 4 and the minimum of 1)

    This bit is very suspect. If you mean, roll a d6 and take 2 off of any number higher than 4 ( i.e. 5 or 6) this is wrong. You'll end up with a bias toward higher scores. There are now 2 ways to make "3" (by rolling a 3 or a 5) and 2 ways to make a "4" (by rolling a 4 or 6). This gives a 1/3 probability of "rolling" a 3 or a 4 and a 1/6 probability of rolling a 1 or a 2. This means you're twice as likely to have a 3 or a 4 come up.

    Equally if you take 2 off of every roll, and impose a minimum value of 1, you end up with a 1 in 2 chance of rolling a "1". (1,2,3 all map to 1 giving a probability of 3 in 6). With all other numbers being a 1/6 chance.

    To see why your d30 substitute of rolling 5d6 is wrong, go to Wolfram Alpha and look at 1d30 and 5d6. Compare the probability distribution graphs. You will see why this is a bad idea. But adding or subtracting a bias is a really bad idea. From another example you give, iIf you try to get a d30 by taking 3d6s and adding 12 everytime, you've just removed the possibility of getting any number below 15!!

    If you're really desperate for a d4, or you're just starting out and don't want to go out and buy a set of dice you could go to Wolfram Alpha and click Roll Again 6 times, or go to one of the sites you get by searching for "d&d dice app", such as this one (from WotC incidentally). Or download a dice app for your smart-phone etc.. But these solutions will not be totally random, only pseudo-random. However they won't have the whopping biases seen above.

    Sorry if this comes across as really critical, but it's quite a fundamental part of the game, i.e. generating random numbers using dice in order to determine outcomes. If the numbers cease to be random (combining lower-numbered die rolls), or become consistently slanted (by using "modifiers") then you're kicking the legs out from under the game. There *are* certain modifiers that are legitimately added to die rolls, with the express intent of biasing them, e.g. you have a sword that gives you a +1 modifier to attack rolls, but these are part of the game. Using "modifiers" to make up for not having the right dice is not part of the game. Hope this helps.

    7 replies

    I know, I need to work on it some more, i was figuring that I could just buy the regular dice set for next to nothing... but I will update this Instructable with a bunch of links to dice roll simulators...but thanks for the positive feedback :D

    No worries! There's a lot of mathematics that is counter-intuitive, and it's easy to get tripped up by something that looks sensible on the face of it, e.g. 5d6 vs. 1d30.

    Another alternative to a d4 would be to make a "spinner", a square of stiff card with a pencil through the centre point and numbers 1 to 4 on the sides. Spin it like a top/dreidel and whichever side it lands on is the number you use. :) You can do this with other die by picking regular shapes with an appropriate number of sides. Once you get up to a d30 though making a balanced spinner might be a tad tricky!

    That is a way better idea on how to make dice, than Dean Hale from Expert Village trying to tell people to sculpt dice from crumpled up aluminum foil with a butter knife and painting over it...

    Newcomers 4D6 drop the lowest (gives them room for error)
    Vets Classic 3D6

    This is the tried and true method that any DM with years under their belt will tell you. Most of the DM's who played in Second Edition have excellent math skills and can vouch this is the perfect method.

    For any ODD rolls. i'e 1d3 1d30 1d45 ect.. Just get a APP....
    Android, Iphone, PC every platform has free dice roller apps... Trying to rig dice to do it just ruins the probability table.

    A Wizard of any kind would have his highest scores as CON & INT.
    Mana doesn't exist in Classic D&D world. Proper terminology helps newcomers here. I would never put a negative number (or allow a newcomer) to put a negative modifier in a CON slot. The idea is if a Ability score hits 0 you die. Evey time you resurrect a character their Con decreases by 1 permanently.

    Come play with us anytime. IT's a game that you learn by playing. : )

    the simplest way to simulate a d4 using a d6 without spoiling the probability's would be to roll a d6 and re-roll on a 5 or 6.

    to roll dice you can bring a laptop and go to and use an auto dice roller

    something about rolling d4 for abilities just rubs me wrong...
    I haven't kept current on the rules, but nothing says D&D like rolling 3d6.
    and d6 can be had ANYWHERE... Yahtzee, craps, monopoly...just to name a few.

    House rules sometimes change things, but usually for the better.
    and by that time, at least the GM will be familiar enough with the game to set reasonable rules.

    I would recommend the rule-books, just because I myself made some mistakes in the making of this tutorial (the dice was a perfect example)

    I am only human, and all tutorials are made by there could be some mistakes... But it really depends on what version of D&D you are playing, the older versions aren't as complicated, and you could rely mostly on the tutorials, so you wouldn't have to buy the rule-books...

    It just all depends on the version of the game you are playing, It is just a necessity these days in D&D to carry around legitimate proof of the rules and guidelines, in which my PDF came from the official website...

    WotC are the people who own the rights to Dungeons and Dragons, therefore they are paid to know this kind of stuff...

    But I would recommend some sort of proof... some books that are used, but in good or excellent condition are selling for around 5 to 10 dollars (USD)

    And Role-Playing dice sell for next to nothing... but I would be afraid of the criticism of carrying around Role-Playing dice...especially the neighborhood that I live in...

    But i would recommend solid proof, so that you know the tutorials that you are getting are legitimate... I make mistakes, every human makes mistakes...its only natural...second-nature...

    They have really improved game play in the 4.0 edition, I highly recommend. But if you want a game to kick back and drink try Dungeon Squad or Microlite 20, really easy simple rules. D&D goes for depth and reality, the others I have mentioned can be played by brain-dead monkeys.

    as an old-school player (started playing back in the 80's)...
    though I stopped right around the time Advanced rules went to the 2.5 version...

    I can say, without a doubt, If you are thinking of taking up the game, either borrow a copy of the players guide book, or get your own.

    You COULD start with the "quick start rules" on It's enough to get you started... but inside of a session or two, your group will want at least a copy of the players guide, dungeon masters guide, and the monster manual.

    At the risk of sounding like a commercial, Half-priced books usually has a nice stock of everything from the really-old school "basic D&d" through AD&D 3.5 rule books. Cheap.

    As for dice... the net contains more random number generators than you can shake a stick at(like There are also a couple instructables that deal with making your own, super-cool dice.

    I'm as old-school as you are (I remember when WoC were an upstart little company with a fancy new card game) - I just wondered if the tutorials would replace my long-lost books.

    I like the older versions better, but I also like the newer monsters of D&D... its a fence worth straddling...

    (Figurative speech, meaning that there are 2 sides and the neutral person is always "straddling the fence")