These are rules for what I’m calling pooled character creation to use in an old-school D&D campaign. The concept is that the table creates a group stable of characters and not just “a character” at the beginning of play.

Step 1: Generate Characters

Each player at the table should generate three characters each, using your table’s preferred method of character generation. For my table, this is usually 3d6 down the line but whatever y’all do is what you should do.

Do not name any of these characters yet. And, don’t buy equipment yet. Just generate starting gold (3d6*10 or whatever) and write that down on the sheet. They should just have all the basic statistics: ability scores, race, class, hit points, saving throws, etc.

Step 2: Choose your primary character

From the three characters that each player generated, that player should choose one of those characters to be their “primary” character that they will play. This could be based on how good the ability scores are, or if the character is of the class the person wants to play, whatever. It’s their choice.

Still: don’t name or buy equipment yet. Just choose the one you’re leaning toward.

STEP 3: Pool the other characters

For the other two remaining characters, each player throws those into a pool in the center of the table. Each player may rifle through these characters, examine them, comment on them, make fun of them. These are all now the Guild owned characters. These characters serve two purposes:

  1. Right then and there, as everyone throws their characters into the middle, any player may decide to change their primary character to one of these Guild characters. See a character with better stats? Sweet. Grab it. It’s now your primary character. Throw the previous one into the middle.
  2. When the game gets going and characters start dying, this is the pool to choose from.


Once everyone is settled on their primary characters, go ahead and name them, buy equipment, and round out the character with whatever else still needs to be done for your system of choice.

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