[RPG] What tools are available to help me create creatures and NPCs?


I have only played Dungeons and Dragons 3.0 but was looking to upgrade to Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 and was wondering if there is any free or cheap (that is, a lot less than $50) software tools or websites that can help manage the game for a DM. I would like recommendations for both 3.0 and 3.5, but I kind of need it to be idiot-proof or at least have an instruction manual.

Ideally, what I'm looking for helps the DM create fully-statted monsters and NPCs and includes enough information so that the DM doesn't have to flip through a stack of books constantly during play.

Best Answer

I haven't used it for straight 3.x in quite some time, but PCGen is quite a fully-featured d20 system character builder. I use it mostly for Pathfinder these days, but I also used it for 3.x during my Living Greyhawk career. It is a free product, for both the good and the bad that comes with it - datafiles are built by volunteers, so are free, but may not be available for every option you want. You could build your own if you needed to, but it is complex.

Herolab is a commercial option that supports multiple game systems (rather than just d20 systems). It will cost you $30 for the software, including one free set of core datafile. Further datafiles, either for expansions or for new game systems, can be bought for a variety of prices. I've never actually used Herolab myself, but I did use Army Builder for quite some time from the same development company.

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