What are some common DnD personality traits?

Medically reviewed by Melissa Guarnaccia, LCSW
Updated January 15, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

For many Dungeons and Dragons (DnD) enthusiasts, the magic of the game comes from the fact that you can create a character with personality traits, ideals, and bonds straight from your head to go on an adventure. Some people create a character that is an idealized version of themselves, with various ideals, bonds, and characteristics. Others take a different route and create a character entirely different from who they are, with an array of different mannerisms. 

There is no right or wrong way to play DnD. In this post, we'll discuss a few common attributes players like to put in their characters.

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How a personality attribute plays personal significance in the game

In the game, a character's traits can have an impact on the story or no impact at all, as personality traits are small, simple additions to a character. Someone's traits may be positive or negative, depending on how you look at them.

For example, say your character is very trusting of others. In some campaigns, when thinking about personality traits, this can be seen as a weakness. You trust someone a bit too much, and they may betray you. However, in some cases, this can be seen as a strength. Because you come off as trusting, more people may open up to you. Then, there are times when this characteristic has no impact on the story at all.

Your character being aggressive is another good example. In some stories, your aggression can be a strength. It intimidates others and gets the job done. On the other hand, it can end up destroying diplomacy and causing a war. Maybe a character likes to try to hide their weakness or find others who have that trait to bond and form unions.

Alternatively, characters don't have to acknowledge certain traits. Sometimes, they may not be aware of their aggression or be in denial about it. Another option is that they just don't care. This can apply to people in real life as well. For additional information on personality traits, check out the Myers-Briggs personality test to determine whether you are the protagonist personality type, the campaigner, or one of 14 others. Knowing your name, tradition, and where you thrive can help you unpack your personality traits in sections.

Common personality traits and attributes

D&D is customizable in that you can create your own house rules or your own unique traits, mannerisms, habits, beliefs, and character dislikes or fears. 

If you are interested in the game or want to know more about it, below is an easy-to-understand list of traits. It can also be fun to dive into role-playing, which includes storytelling, thinking creatively, and collaborating with others. These games also allow you to use critical thinking skills, as they include teamwork, social skills, and communication.

Abrasiveness

Abrasiveness can be seen as a negative trait because it describes having trouble being nice in a conversation. Someone abrasive can be demanding, and although they may get what they want, they may hurt others. It can increase your intimidation stat, but people may find your character insufferable, and it can destroy civil discourse.

Absent-minded

A character who is absent-minded may be seen as someone who is smart but is always thinking too much. Because of this, they may end up being lost in the conversation or unaware of where they are. If your character is absent-minded, they may be someone people rely on for knowledge, but when it comes to being in the present, you might count them out.

Aggression

Aggression is when a character is often ready to fight and is quite a menace. They may start fights when there is a more peaceful solution, and their anger and brute force may be a weakness when the battle requires more strategy. Gestures that might demand power are included in this personality.

Brawler

A brawler is someone who likes to use their fists rather than any weapons. They believe that what they always have with them is the best weapon. A brawler may be quick on their feet because they are less encumbered but may find it difficult to win a battle where weapons are used. They value anything they can naturally use on their body.

Cautious

A cautious player often takes steps to make sure they are safe in combat, taking note of everything in nature, considering every background noise, and using their history and experience to make decisions. Cautious and cowardice can be mutually exclusive or come hand in hand, depending on the character. Someone cautious may use different strategies to get out in the safest way possible but may be weak and fear attacks. If you need a character who can solve problems in the most peaceful way possible, however, a cautious person may be the way to go.

Detached

A detached character is often in their own world when it comes to the group. They are often behind and don't talk much. This can give them an advantage, but it can mean that no one trusts them, which can be good or bad, depending on how you play the game. These members may not use a ton of language or exchange ideas with other characters. They often keep details and aspects to themselves, but not out of greed or without reason.

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Dishonesty

A dishonest character tends to lie. This character has mastered the art of lying and can use it to get what they want. However, if the tower of lies falls, it can ruin your character as everyone will find out that you have been dishonest, especially if you have been exposed and then say something that is the truth. It can end up being a boy-who-cried-wolf situation, and you might lose money or your spot at the table.

Distinctive

This is when someone has a physical trait that sets them apart. They can have big ears, a scar, or another characteristic that makes them different. As you can imagine, this can be a bit of a disadvantage if your character is trying to hide or disguise themselves. However, it can give your character a bit of a reputation. For example, if your character has a limp, they may use it to get sympathy.

Easygoing

This is a friendly character. Being friendly means that people tend to like talking to you, and you generally have no problem making friends. However, you may have difficulty standing up for yourself or getting into fights and may have a problem if you need to be more aggressive in your actions. An easygoing character may be gullible as well. Gaining respect while also maintaining freedom and accomplishments tends to be a great skill of these characters.

Farsighted

In a character's traits, a flaw might be farsightedness. In many worlds of D&D, glasses are not a thing, so a character may have challenges with their vision. Farsighted people have a hard time seeing what's nearby, but they can see ahead very well. 

Focused

Someone who is focused can often keep their eyes on the prize no matter how many things try to distract them. However, those who are too focused on one thing may ignore something else important that passes them by. 

Hard of hearing

This type of character is deaf or has trouble hearing. Despite their disability, they may have enhanced their other senses to compensate.

Hardy

These people often consider themselves strong, and they may judge those who aren't as strong. The problem is that they can sometimes overestimate their strength, and they may get hurt as a result.

Honest

This is someone who doesn't want to tell a lie. Sincerity means that more people will likely flock to you and trust you. However, sometimes, you may need to tell a white lie to survive. In those cases, you may have trouble keeping up a lie, and you may not be able to spot other liars.

Illiterate

In the fantasy world, reading can sometimes be a privilege, and someone illiterate won't be able to read. However, they may have other skills they use. Sometimes, a character may learn to read over time.

Inattentive

Someone who is inattentive may be able to deal with smaller tasks, but when it comes to big projects, they often won't do them.

Polite

A character who is polite may try to be as well-spoken as possible, even if they don't like the person they're speaking to. They can be genuinely polite, or they may be using politeness to their advantage.

Quick

Someone quick is usually faster than other people. They may be able to escape faster, but they may be less skilled in other areas.

Relentless

Someone who is relentless usually won't give up no matter what. This can be great for situations that require persistence, but characters who are relentless may over-exhaust themselves, which can lead to fatigue.

Slow

Slowness often gives a character two personality traits. They may not be able to escape as fast, but they may be sturdier. When it's time to run, they'll be left behind. However, they may be able to fight more easily.

Specialized

Someone specialized may be skilled in one subject but have fewer skills in others. For example, a character may be a master at crafting but be poor at fighting. You may want to make sure your skills are balanced or learn to deal with your weaknesses.

Suspicious

Suspicious characters tend to be skeptical of everyone they meet. This can help them spot people who are trying to do them wrong, but the problem is that it can turn people away because of how distrustful they are.

Uncivilized

An uncivilized person was likely raised in the wild or simply identifies with a trait related to animals. They may be awkward when it comes to various situations where they must speak, so they may benefit from sociable people to prop them up.

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Explore personality traits with a professional 

If you want to dive deeper into DnD personality traits or discover more about your real-life personality, consider speaking with a therapist. A licensed therapist can help you understand and improve your personality traits and bonds in real life. If meeting with an in-person therapist isn't convenient. Consider online therapy through a platform like BettHelp. Online therapy allows more flexibility, so you can more easily fit sessions between your responsibilities and gameplay. 

Research has shown online therapy is as effective as in-person therapy for treating common conditions like anxiety and depression, and newer research shows that it has promise in treating personality-based concerns and disorders

Takeaway

Character attributes reflect a lot about a person. You may be able to improve upon your character traits and tendencies and use them to your advantage.

Navigate personality traits with a professional
The information on this page is not intended to be a substitution for diagnosis, treatment, or informed professional advice. You should not take any action or avoid taking any action without consulting with a qualified mental health professional. For more information, please read our terms of use.
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