DM References & Cheat Sheets

I’m gearing up to DM (first time) with a group of friends so I’m reading over the rules again and looking for cheat sheets. I ordered a DM screen, and I think maybe I’ll tape them to the inside of it.

The conditions were one thing I wanted to have on hand. 5E’s conditions are a little bit messy, and there’s a lot of different kinds of information involved, so it’s not an easy thing to design a single chart to help a DM quickly find the relevant bits. I ended up making my own, but this guy¬†did a great job, (Thanks R. Donoghue!) I just completely ripped off his chart’s organization. Also, his blog pointed me at, which is just amazing.

I also found this¬†interactive quick-reference guide. It’s fantastic, but I don’t really want to have a laptop open on the table while I’m DMing. It covers a lot more than just conditions, and I might adapt some of it for myself later.

my charts under the jump. Here’s a link to the google doc

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Vision and Light

The Ramaki PC race has some mechanics that are dependent on light levels, so I’ve been reading up on the rules surrounding vision and light. Someone has made some really great charts that cover all of it. When I finally start getting ready to actually DM, I’ll definitely have a copy of these in my binder.

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I love having a character portrait, but I can’t draw. Heromachine was probably invented for people like me. Its a custom character creator. It has a little bit of a learning curve, but it gives good quick results.

This is Luxo Avrice Welsley. He’s a cheating merchant/rogue. He likes treasure. Who doesn’t, you say? True, but Luxo REALLY loves treasure. Like, a LOT. More than you do, probably.

heromachine screenshot

This is Lizzy the barbarian halfling. She’s into booze, gambling, and RAGE.

Lizzy took a little longer to make. A gnome or a half-ling would have more child-like proportions, I thought; bigger head relative to body, etc. so I spent some time nudging the proportions. She used to look squashed. Now she only looks slightly squashed. I call that a success.


It’s fun and quick and free. Give it a try next time you need a new PC or NPC portrait.