All PHB DND 5e Backgrounds Official List & Chart

DND aka Dungeons and Dragons is a role-playing game that allows users to bring visions and imagination into real-life characters that have the potential to survive in such a challenging and competitive environment. It is quite evident by the name, that the game is based in a dragon world filled with challenges, secrets, and treasures. We list all the dnd 5e backgrounds, making it easier to locate your background from the list below.

AcolytePHBAny two119NoneInsight, Religion
CriminalPHBNone121Gaming set, ThievesDeception, Stealth
CharlatanPHBNone120Disguise kit, Forgery kitDeception, Sleight of Hand
EntertainerPHBNone122Musical instrument, Disguise kitAcrobatics, Performance
Folk HeroPHBNone123Artisan's tool, vehicles (land)Animal handling survival
Guild ArtisanPHBAny One124Artisan's toolInsight, persuasion
HermitPHBAny One126Herbalism KitReligion, Medicine
NoblePHBAny One127Gaming setHistory, Persuasion
OutlanderPHBAny One128Musical InstrumentAthletics, Survival
SagePHBAny Two129Navigator's tools, vehiclesArcana, History
SailorPHBNone131Navigator's tools, vehicles (water)Athletics, Perception
SoldierPHBNone132 Gaming set, vehicles (land)Athletics, Intimidation
UrchinPHBNone133Disguise kit, Thieves’ toolsSleight of Hand, Stealth
City WatchSCAGAny Two145NoneAthletics, Insight
Clan CrafterSCAGAny One145Artisan's ToolsHistory, Insight
Cloistered ScholarSCAGAny Two146NoneHistory, Choose 1: Arcana, Nature, Religion
Faction AgentSCAGAny Two147NoneInsight, Special (Choice)
Far TravelerSCAGAny One148Musical Instrument x10, Gaming Set x1Insight, Perception
InheritorSCAGNone150Musical Instrument x1, Gaming Set x1Survival, Choose 1: Arcana, History, Religion
InvestigatorSCAGAny Two145NoneInsight, Investigation
Knight of the orderSCAGAny One151Gaming set x1, Musical Instrument x1Persuasion, Special (choice)
Mercenary VeteranSCAGAny One152Gaming Set x1, Ground VehicleAthletics, Persuasion
Urban Bounty HunterSCAGNone153Choose 1: Gaming Set x1, Musical Instrument x1, Thieves ToolsChoose 2: Deception, Insight, Persuasion, Stealth
Uthgardt Tribe MemberSCAGAny One153Choose 1: Artisan's Tools, Musical Instrument x1Athletics, Survival
Waterdhavian NobleSCAGAny One154Choose 1: Gaming Set x1, Musical Instrument x1History, Persuasion
Black Fist Double AgentCOS (AL)None02Disguise kit, and choose one from artisan's tools x1, gaming set x1Deception, insight
Dragon CasualtyCOS (AL)Draconic03Special (See page)Intimidation, survival
Iron Route BanditCOS (AL)None05Gaming set x1, land vehicles Animal handling, Stealth
Phlan InsurgentCOS (AL)None06Artisan's tools x1, Land vehiclesStealth, survival
Stojanow PrisonerCOS (AL)None08Gaming set x1, thieves' toolsDeception, perception
Ticklebelly NomadCOS (AL)Giant09Herbalism kitAnimal handling, nature
Caravan SpecialistEE (AL)Any one02Land VehiclesAnimal handling, survival
Earthspur MinerEE (AL)Dwarvish, Undercommon03NoneAthletics, Survival
HarborfolkEE (AL)None04Gaming set x1, Water vehiclesAthletics, sleight of hand
Mulmaster AristocratEE (AL)None05Artisan's tools x1, musical instrument x1Deception, performance
Phlan RefugeeEE (AL)Any one06Artisan's tools x1Athletics, insight
Cormanthor RefugeeRoD (AL)Elvish05Artisan's tools x1Nature, Survival
Gate UrchinRoD (AL)None06Musical instrument x1, thieves' toolsDeception, sleight of hand
Hillsfar MerchantRoD (AL)None07Vehicles (land), vehicles (water)Insight, Persuasion
Hillsfar SmugglerRoD (AL)Any one08Forgery kitPerception, Stealth
Secret IdentityRoD (AL)None09Disguise kit, forgery kitDeception, Stealth
Shade FanaticRoD (AL)Netherese10Forgery kitDeception, Intimidation
Trade SheriffRoD (AL)Elvish11Thieves' toolsInvestigation, Persuasion

External Homebrew Backgrounds

We list all the external 5e homebrew backgrounds in alphabetical order, making it easier to locate your background from the list below.

Backgrounds From A To E

AbyssdwellerBalloon MageCattle RustlerDandyEarthling
AdeptBankerChangelingDark LordElysium Knight
AdoptedBarmaidChild of AresDemonologistEmployee of Royalty
AdventurerBattlesmithChroniclerDenizenEndless Soul
Adventuring RoyaltyBeggarCity GuardDetectiveEngineer
AfflictedBereavedCity WorkerDiplomatEnvoy
Air AcrobatBodyguardCloneDisciple of the ObscureEternal One
Alchemic ConstructBounty HunterCombat MedicDisgraceEvil Cultist
AlchemistButlerConfederacy of Feuding HousesDisowned NobleEx-Blood Doll
Alcoholic ScientistConstructDoctorExile
AmnesiacCookDog of the MilitaryExiled Ruler
Ancient CultistCourtesanDragon TrainedExperiment
Ancient OneCrazed HermitDrow Breeding SlaveExplorer
AntiquarianCrusader NationDrunken Bum
Arcana Spy
Arcane Augmented
Arcane Dominion
Armed Escort
Arranged Marriage
Arvoreen Keeper

Backgrounds From F To L

FarmerGladiatorHellbornIdol FollowerLibrarian
Feral ChildGypsyInquirerLone Survivor
Fourth Wall Breaker

Backgrounds From M To W

Master InquisitorProspectorReaverSalesmanUrban Vigilante
Metal WorkerSeeker Of A Lost Life
MonsterShadow Thieves Guild Member
Monster HunterSlave
Student Of Magic

What are 5E Backgrounds in DND?

In simple words, the DND 5e background is your character’s history and experiences. Later in the article, we discussed certain elements that are required in character-making and one of the important ones being race, class, and equipment.

D&D Backgrounds are a set of skills and expertise that come with the character’s top 3’s (race, class, equipment). It helps evaluate what a character is professional at. For example, a character with a background of a criminal is most likely to be a spy with confidential information about popular profiles, have a secretive personality, and be an expert in carrying heists with tools used for theft. Your background provides you with language/tools, proficiencies, and features.

Backgrounds provide your character with a backstory and the motivation to master those pre-existing skills. Let’s move forward to studying each of the elements that your background gives.

🟢 Language: Languages a character can speak add depth and say a lot about them. This is such a powerful move to incorporate into a game that adds realism to the character’s personality overall. Most of the backgrounds come with one language only, but others with multilingual.

🟢 Proficiencies: Each character’s background provides them with 2 skills that they are naturally good at and highly talented in that area. It varies from background to background, but shapes your character to the next level. Some backgrounds might give you the same skills like guild artisan and guild merchant. It could be a weapon proficiency, skill, or tool. Proficiencies are an important part of your gameplay and influence your game level.

🟢 Tools: Characters are given tools and weapons based on their background.

Sample DND 5e Backgrounds

In the below provided d&d 5e backgrounds list, which is officially mentioned in the player’s handbook. There are thirteen backgrounds. If you want more backgrounds than you can check above list.

All thirteen sample dnd 5th edition backgrounds, which are also mention in player hand book (phb).
13 Sample DnD Backgrounds

Who is the 👨‍💼 Dungeon Master?

There’s always a master of the game or a judge and thus, DM aka Dungeon Master fulfills the responsibility of being one. The dungeon master is in charge of managing the characters and making sure that players are following the rules of the game. They narrate the story and assign levels to the players based on their difficulty. Players are obliged to follow their instructions without a second thought.

Character – Making in DND

Creating characters is an integral part of this game on which the whole game stands. Players are supposed to create characters according to their likings and preferences. There are so many customization options available to produce a strong character with reliable abilities and strengths. Character-making sounds fun but yet the players have to be very smart with it since your whole game depends on your character. 

How to create a Character?

To answer the question of “how to create a character” is quite simple. Visualize a character that reflects your characteristics or whatever you imagine when you hear the word “hero”. Once you’re done with the difficult part, now moving on to the creative part. Choose the race, class, and background of your character. Next, select weapons, personality traits, and abilities. At last, write a short description and give a name to your character.

Customizing your own Background

This might sound fake, but it’s true. Players can create a background of their own. Creating your own background from scratch can be a fun experience and can help players explore the unseen side of DND which requires creativity and innovation.

Here are a few steps to creating your own background:

🟢 Come up with a concept: This is an important step and probably the time-consuming one. Brainstorm which kind of character you want to create. If you have a keen interest in fantasy or action-based characters, then this might be the easiest step for you. Have a visualized idea of your character and follow the next options wisely that reflect their background and personality traits.

🟢 Choose tools/skills: Ask yourself what kind of tools would suit your character on the basis of their background and upbringing. It would be completely pointless to give your character a gaming set if they grew up in a forest. Having know-how of herbalism and survival hacks would go perfectly with their background.

🟢 Select any 2 languages: Think of 2 languages that your character must have learned growing up or their training, this can depend on their race and culture.

🟢 Give them a feature: Give your character a unique feature. The feature should reflect their past experiences and how they helped shaped their personality since a feature symbolizes expertise in a specific area.

🟢 Backstory: At last, give your character a nice backstory. Talk about what really inspired you to create a character like them. Highlight their skills, background, talents, and other expertise. Keep it short but effective and engaging.

a red color of dragon flying in Dungeons & Dragons.
Dungeons and Dragons 5e backgrounds

Final Words

At last, we would highly encourage everyone to explore the 5e backgrounds in DND to get a clearer picture of the game. You will understand more clearly once you experience it with your own hands. We’ve tried to incorporate all the backgrounds so you guys don’t miss out on anything.

Frequently Asked Questions Of D&D 5E Backgrounds

Can I customize my own characters?

Yes, players are allowed to create their own characters with different backgrounds, skills, and tools. Check out the steps required for creating new characters.

Is there the best background in DND?

Although each and every background is unique in its own way, if we compare all of them, then Acolyte and the entertainer have to be the star of the show.

Can I change the character’s background that I customized?

It depends on the DM, but you must have a solid reason for bringing out such a massive change since it’s the core part of your character.

Is it possible to have a character with multiple backgrounds?

No, but with DM’s permission it is possible. Convincing him is like winning at life.

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Last updated: January 3, 2024