As a lifelong DND player, I’ve seen my fair share of original characters, worlds, and stories that have been created by the community.
There’s nothing quite like the rush of bringing your own unique creation to the game.
But what exactly is DND OC, and how can you harness its power to elevate your gaming experience to the next level?
In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about DND Original Content.
What Does DND OC Mean?
You might already know about DND but I’m going to break “DND OC” down into simple parts:
- “DND” refers to “Dungeons & Dragons,” or DND, which is a popular tabletop role-playing game.
- “OC” stands for “Original Content,” which usually refers to any type of creative work that is original and not based on existing material.
- OC can also refer to an “Original Character.”
This is a character created by a player for use in a DND game, which is not based on any existing character or story.
This might include details about the character’s backstory, personality, abilities, and appearance.
In the context of DND, “OC” and “Original Content” may be used interchangeably to refer to a player’s unique creation that they bring to the game.
Major Types of DND Original Content (OC)
DND OC can take many forms, from unique characters and races to entire worlds and campaigns.
Here are some of the most common types of DND Original Content:
- One-Shot Adventures
- Full Campaigns
Characters are one of the most popular and iconic types of DND Original Content.
They are the avatars that players use to interact with the game world, and they can be as unique and complex as the players who create them. Characters can have their own backstories, motivations, and personalities that make them stand out from the crowd.
For example, a DND player might create a character named “Eliza.”
In this case, she’s a half-elf-bard who uses her musical talents to charm and manipulates others.
Eliza might have a tragic backstory, such as being orphaned at a young age, which motivates her to seek adventure and meaning in the world.
Other examples of DND OC (Original Characters):
- DND Wizard OC
- DND Elf OC
- DND Ranger OC
- DND Necromancer OC
- DND Gnome OC
- DND Drow OC
- DND Fighter OC
- DND Archer OC
- DND Dward OC
Monsters are the creatures that players encounter and fight in the game.
They can be anything from classic fantasy beasts like dragons and goblins to unique creations that the DM (Dungeon Master) invents. Monsters can have their own abilities, strengths, and weaknesses that make them challenging and memorable foes.
In terms of DND OC Monsters, a DM might create a monster called the Nethertongue:
Appearance: The Nethertongue is a large, demonic creature with long, sinewy limbs and razor-sharp claws. Its skin is an oily black, and its eyes are a glowing red. Its most distinctive feature is its long, forked tongue, which it uses to siphon the life force from its victims.
Abilities: The Nethertongue is a powerful creature that can move quickly and quietly, making it a formidable hunter. It can use its long, forked tongue to drain the life force from its victims, causing them to age rapidly and wither away to dust. The Nethertongue is also able to blend into the shadows, making it difficult to detect and track.
Behavior: The Nethertongue is a solitary creature that prefers to hunt alone. It is highly intelligent and patient, often stalking its prey for days or even weeks before striking. The Nethertongue is a predator of opportunity, and will attack any creature that it deems weak enough to be taken down.
Habitat: The Nethertongue is most commonly found in dark, subterranean environments such as caves and catacombs. It prefers to lair in hidden, hard-to-reach places, where it can wait patiently for prey to come to it.
The Nethertongue is a terrifying and deadly addition to any DND game, and is sure to provide a challenging and memorable encounter for any group of adventurers who dare to face it.
I just made this up so feel free to use it if you want.
DND OC Maps are visual representations of the game world that players use to navigate and explore.
They can be as simple or complex as the DM desires and can range from small battle arenas to sprawling continents.
Maps can help players visualize the world and plan their strategies accordingly.
For example, a DM might create a map of a haunted forest, complete with winding paths, hidden traps, and ghostly apparitions. The map might help players plan their routes and avoid danger.
You can find links to some of the best free DND Maps at the bottom of this article.
Worlds are the expansive settings in which DND adventures take place.
They can be as broad or focused as the DM wants, and can include multiple continents, cities, and environments. Worlds can have their own unique histories, cultures, and conflicts that players can explore.
A DM might create an original world called “Arvandor,” a fantastical realm of magic and wonder.
Arvandor might be populated by a variety of races, including elves, dwarves, and Dragonborn, each with their own customs and traditions.
Races are the different species that players can choose to play as in DND.
They can be classic fantasy races like humans, elves, and dwarves, or more unique creations like tieflings and tabaxi.
DND Original Content races possess their own unique abilities and traits that set them apart from one another.
For example, a player might create an original race called “Tinkerkin.”
Not to be confused with Tinkerskin.
Here are some details about this new race:
DND OC Race: Tinkerkin
Appearance: The Tinkerkin are a small, humanoid race with oversized heads and long, nimble fingers. They are known for their intricate and highly detailed prosthetics, which they use to enhance their physical abilities and to express their creativity. Tinkerkin have a range of skin tones, and their eyes are large and expressive.
Abilities: Tinkerkin are highly intelligent and dexterous, with a natural aptitude for mechanical engineering and other forms of tinkering. They are able to create complex machines and gadgets using only the simplest of materials, and can repair almost any broken device. Tinkerkin also have enhanced agility and reflexes, making them adept at dodging attacks and moving quickly.
Behavior: Tinkerkin are curious and adventurous, with a strong sense of wanderlust. They are known for exploring far-off lands and ancient ruins in search of rare and interesting components for their inventions. Tinkerkin are also fiercely loyal to their families and communities, and will go to great lengths to protect their own.
Habitat: Tinkerkin prefer to live in small, tight-knit communities that are built around their workshops and laboratories. They are often found in hidden or hard-to-reach locations, such as mountaintops or deep underground. Tinkerkin are also known for their love of air travel, and can often be found living in airships or dirigibles.
Classes are the different roles that characters can play in the game.
They can include traditional roles like fighter, rogue, and wizard, or more unique roles like artificer and warlock.
Classes can have their own unique abilities and spells that make them effective in different situations.
As you might expect, a DM can design a completely original DND class.
For example, I once created my version of the tank class called “Sentinel”:
Class Name: Sentinel
The Sentinel is a heavily-armored defender class that can absorb massive amounts of damage and protect their allies in combat. They are experts in battlefield control, using their strength and durability to keep enemies at bay and create space for their allies to operate.
- Shield Wall – The Sentinel can plant their shield into the ground to create a wall that provides cover and blocks enemy movement.
- Defensive Stance – The Sentinel can adopt a defensive stance that increases their armor class and damage resistance.
- Taunt – The Sentinel can taunt enemies within a certain radius, drawing their attention and forcing them to attack the Sentinel.
- Body Block – The Sentinel can intercept attacks aimed at their allies, taking the damage in their place.
- Aegis Shield – The Sentinel can use their shield to block attacks from multiple enemies, reducing damage taken by a percentage.
- Heavy armor and a tower shield
- A one-handed melee weapon, such as a sword or axe
- Shieldmaster – Focuses on maximizing the defensive potential of the Sentinel, with abilities that enhance shield use and damage resistance.
- Vanguard – Focuses on creating space and controlling the battlefield, with abilities that allow the Sentinel to push and knock back enemies.
- Protector – Focuses on supporting allies and mitigating damage, with abilities that heal and buff nearby allies.
This class is not to be confused with the Sentinel Feat in DND.
One-shot adventures are short and self-contained adventures that can be completed in a single game session.
They can be great for players who don’t have a lot of time or for DMs who want to try out new ideas without committing to a longer campaign. One-shot adventures can have their own unique settings and challenges that keep players engaged.
A DM might create a one-shot adventure called “The Lost Temple,” where players have to explore an ancient temple and retrieve a powerful artifact.
The temple might be filled with traps, puzzles, and undead guardians that players have to overcome.
Full campaigns are longer and more elaborate adventures that can span multiple game sessions or even months of playtime.
They can be great for players who want to invest in a long-term story and character development.
Full campaigns can have their own overarching plots, villains, and themes that keep players engaged.
Let’s say a DM develops a full campaign called “Seige of the Dragon Queen,” where players have to help a kingdom defend itself against an invading dragon army.
The campaign might involve multiple battles, political intrigue, and moral dilemmas that challenge the players’ abilities and beliefs.
Stories are the narratives that players create and experience in the game.
On the flip side, stories can also be published stories based on your other DND OC ideas.
Stories can be as simple or complex as the players want and can include elements of drama, comedy, action, and more.
For example, a player might create a story about their character’s quest for revenge against a rival who betrayed them in the past. The story might involve the player seeking out clues, gathering allies, and confronting the rival in a dramatic showdown.
DND OC Art refers to the visual representations of DND Original Content, such as character illustrations, monster designs, and world maps.
OC Art can bring DND to life.
In turn, this gives players and DMs a better understanding and appreciation of their creations. DND OC Art can also help players and DMs to share and showcase their work with the DND community.
A DND player might create a detailed illustration of their character “Gurney,” a dwarven ranger, showcasing her unique appearance and personality. The illustration might include details such as her clothing, hairstyle, and facial expression.
DND OC Art can also include monster designs.
For example, a DM might create a unique monster called the “Shadow Panther,” a stealthy feline predator that can blend in with the shadows.
The monster’s design might be illustrated with detailed features such as its fur patterns, eye color, and sharp claws.
Art, of course, includes static images, video, and animation.
Check out this example of DND Original Content animation:
Who Makes DND OC?
DND Original Content can be made by anyone who plays Dungeons & Dragons.
Both players and DMs can create their own original content to add to the game. The creation of DND Original Content is often a collaborative effort, with players and DMs working together to develop unique characters, worlds, and stories.
Players are typically responsible for creating their own characters, which can involve developing their character’s backstory, personality, abilities, and appearance.
Players can also create their own unique spells, equipment, and other items that their character can use.
DMs, on the other hand, are responsible for creating the game’s world, plot, and non-player characters (NPCs). This can involve developing the world’s history, culture, and conflicts, as well as creating unique creatures, monsters, and villains for the players to encounter.
However, DND Original Content can also be created by fans and enthusiasts of the game who may not necessarily be players or DMs.
These individuals can create their own original art, music, writing, and other forms of media inspired by DND.
Why People Make DND OC
There are many reasons why people create DND Original Content.
For some, it’s a way to express their creativity and imagination and to bring their own unique ideas and stories to the game.
For others, it’s a way to personalize their gaming experience.
Creating DND Original Content can also be a way to build social connections and foster a sense of community within the DND player base.
By sharing their creations with others, players, and DMs can inspire and learn from one another.
They also contribute to a broader culture of DND fandom and creativity.
In addition, creating original content can be a way to deepen one’s appreciation and engagement with the game.
By investing time and energy into developing their own characters, worlds, and stories, players and DMs can develop a deeper understanding and connection with the game’s mechanics, lore, and themes.
Finally, creating original content can be a way to challenge oneself and develop new skills and abilities.
Whether it’s developing a character with a complex backstory, creating a unique and challenging monster, or designing a full campaign with multiple interconnected storylines, creating DND Original Content can be a way to push one’s own creative boundaries and learn new things.
What Is a DND OC Generator?
A DND OC generator is a tool that can help players and DMs generate unique and creative DND original content, such as characters, monsters, and settings.
These generators often use algorithms and randomization to produce new and unexpected combinations of traits, abilities, and features.
DND OC generators can be a useful tool for players and DMs who may be experiencing writer’s block
Or who are looking for new and creative ways to add to their games.
Here are some of the best DND OC generators:
|DND OC Generator||Details|
|ChatGPT||Offers free and paid versions|
|Jasper AI||Creates written and image OC|
|WriterSonic||A good runner-up to Jasper|
You can use any of these three generators to produce:
- Character backstories
Other DND OC makers you might consider are teracube.com or dndcompendium.com.
For straight text, you can’t go wrong with ChatGPT. For more robust features, including art and images, Jasper is my recommendation.
What Is a DND OC Template?
A DND OC template is a pre-designed format that can be used as a starting point for creating new and unique DND original content, such as characters, monsters, and settings.
Templates often include pre-filled sections for things like:
Using a DND Original Content template can be a great way to get started with creating new content.
Especially for those who may be new to the game or who may be experiencing writer’s block.
Templates can provide a clear and easy-to-follow framework for organizing ideas and developing new content and can help to ensure that important details aren’t overlooked.
Here are some examples of DND OC templates:
- Character Sheets. Pre-designed sheets can be used to record a character’s abilities, traits, and other details.
- Monster Templates. Pre-designed templates that can be used to create new and unique monsters, complete with abilities, stats, and other details.
- World-building Templates. Pre-designed templates that can be used to create fresh settings, complete with histories, cultures, and conflicts.
There are many places to find DND Original Content templates online, including Pinterest, deviantArt, and other online communities and forums.
You can download and customize them to fit your specific needs and preferences.
Final Thoughts: DND OC
There is no way to cover the entirety of DND Original Content in a single article.
That’s why I’ve listed some more blog posts below that I think you’ll love:
- 1,000 DND OC Ideas (With Pictures)
- 140 DND Player vs Player Ideas (Ultimate DM List)
- 250+ DND Desert Maps (Free Maps + DM Guide)
- 200+ DND Tavern Maps (Free Maps & DM Guide)