Character Tools Alpha Feedback

Here is some collected feedback on the current alpha. Generally I am fairly impressed with the current state and like the general direction! :partying_face:

My biggest “issues” are probably performance and the various small bugs and unfinished state which is great since that is to be expected in the alpha and will no doubt improve anyway.

Below is a grab bag of small issues, future improvements, vague ideas on how some parts might be improved, etc…
This is mostly just me jotting down my thoughts as I used the tools so the scope, importance & feasibility of these points will vary wildly.

I tried to avoid too obvious or repetitive requests and listing minor bugs but YMMV :slight_smile:


  • Big +1 on good tablet support. Most of our group uses tablets now so this will be really important and hopefully not a second class experience. Large tablets should hopefully get a mostly desktop-like experience. For example 12’’ iPads get the full desktop layout on dndbeyond which is great.

  • Some sidebar content has a View Details button which links to the compendium. It would be great if that would open in a new tab/window so the character sheet remains open in the current tab. Or at least such buttons be simple links so a user can open the link in a separate tab manually.

  • It would be nice to have a visual indication when clicking something will open a corresponding sidebar entry to make that more discoverable.

  • Expanding items with a disclosure triangle can sometimes be done by clicking on the item title/text itself and sometimes only by clicking on the disclosure triangle. This should be consistent.

Character Builder

  • After a selection has been made it should be possible to look at the other option or even change the selection without resetting later selections in the process (that don’t depend on those previous selections).
    For example, after selecting an ancestry and background, I should be able to look at different ancestries without changing my selected heritage as long as I pick the same ancestry again. And my background should never be affected even if I change my ancestry.

  • For heritage or feat selections, it would be nice to be able to change a selected option with a single click. Currently we need to first remove the current selection before selecting a new one. It would be nicer to just change the selection with a single click.

  • I would prefer if all ability boosts were collected in a single page instead of spread out over the ancestry, background and class pages.
    I realize that is the official process in the CRB but Pathbuilder for example collects all the ability boosts in a single page and I find that to be much nicer since I generally want to consider ability boosts as a single wholistic step anyway and this saves me from going back and forth across multiple pages.

  • Feats & heritages should be searchable by name, same as ancestries and backgrounds.

  • Options should display their rarity (common, uncommon, rare) in the list where applicable and at least feats should be filterable by rarity as well.

  • I would prefer lazily-loaded scrolling lists over pagination for long lists of options (e.g. backgrounds).

  • For feat selection it would be nice to toggle it so feats of higher levels are shown as well, even if they can’t be selected in that location. This would be useful for reference/planning purposes so we don’t have to go to a higher level slot to see what the future options might be.

  • It might also be nice to display feat-trees. E.g. a feat could list any future feats it unlocks in the sidebar entry which would again help with planning.

  • It would be nice to be able to plan a build by experimenting with the options for future levels without changing the current level. Making a copy of a character to do so is really cumbersome and e.g. Pathbuilder handles this nicely where one can pre-plan future character levels without affecting the current level and abilities shown in the character sheet.

  • Personally, I would like the layout to be a bit denser. Even on a desktop screen I currently find that there is too much whitespace and fonts are rather a bit too big for my taste. While things look nice and are very readable, i fell like the ergonomics of using the tools suffers for me since a lot of scrolling or switching tabs is required.
    For example, with the builder I much prefer the wide 3-column layout and would like to see that even on slightly less wide windows/screens. And with lists I feel I would need to scroll less if the layout were a bit denser.
    And with the character sheet, the current layout presents relatively little information on a single screen and requires significant scrolling & tabbing. The dndbeyond character sheet in comparison remains relatively appealing and readable while presenting significantly more information in the same space. Now I’m not saying the dndbeyond sheet is perfect or that I want the same layout, just that I hope we eventually get more information in the same space.

  • This is a bit speculative but I feel like the left-most column in the builder is a bit underutilized. For example, I feel it might be nicer to have the ancestry option selections that are currently in the middle column as sub-options in the left column that appear once an ancestry is selected. The options currently don’t really need all the space in the middle column, e.g. Details, Heritages, Ability Boosts, Feats would easily fit in the left column even when indented as sub-options of ancestry.
    This would then free up the middle column to display the list of heritages or feats which in turn frees up the third column to show the heritage or feat details. That we we don’t need the disclosure triangles but can instead see the details by selecting the option in the middle column like with the ancestry selection itself.
    The idea could be applied to the class section as well.
    Hard to judge without being able to try it but I feel I would prefer having to scroll the first column when in turn I get a nicer layout when actually doing e.g. feat selection where I can see the list of feats in one column and the feat details in a second one without having to open and close disclosure triangles all the time and can instead just click on a feat to see its description in the next column.

Character Sheet

The character sheet feels fairly early so I’m focusing on some general feedback.

  • The navigation bar(s) at the top should ideally be hideable (and maybe hidden by default) to maximize the vertical space available for the character sheet. I want as much space for the sheet as possible when playing and I don’t often need to access any of the navigation options and if I do so I usually use a separate tab anyway.
    Particularly in wide layouts, the double navigation bars (Demiplane & Pathfinder Nexus) is just eating up a ton of vertical space.
    I fell a single bar (like in the more compact layout) is always sufficient and on the character sheet specifically I would be happy to just have a hamburger menu or sth in a corner without a navigation bar at all.

  • Having many different scrollable areas doesn’t feel great. I think ideally there should probably not be more than one scrollable area (other than the page itself).
    For example, when on the Skills & Actions tab, I need to mentally track the page, skills and actions scroll states which can become confusing at times.

Character Sheet - minor issues & feature requests or dreams

  • Much more expansive inventory management is probably already planned but just a couple things I hope to see beyond the basics:

    • Buying items & currency management. dndbeyond still hasn’t managed to add this so I hope this gets prioritised a bit earlier. Buying items where currency is automatically deducted would be nice but isn’t critical. But the character sheet should at least do some automatic currency management so a player can for example subtract 23 sp and the character sheet would automatically convert gp into sp as needed.

    • Managing invested & worn items

    • Maybe even soem tools to help manage what a character is currently holding. This is much less important and hard make work well and is more combat specific than general inventory management but many players would probably be glad to have sth to track if they currently have a potion in their hand and that they might need to re-grip their two-handed weapon after using the potion, etc…

  • The sidebar should be dismissable by clicking outside the sidebar on the page

  • Second & third attacks should be separate buttons. Both so people rolling real dice can quickly glance the respective modifiers and when rolling on the character sheet it feels way to cumbersome to click twice for such a common action.

  • This might just be a bug or not yet implemented but I couldn’t find a way to remove notes on the character sheet (Resistances & Immunities section for example).

  • Very minor, but the Details tab is mostly just text that can be freely chosen with exception of the deity. Unless there is character sheet functionality planned for Lost Omens deities this should probably just be a text field as well and even if such functionality is planned a custom option is still needed for homebrew settings or deities.

  • It would be nice to quickly toggle between filtering for exploration or combat actions/activities.

  • This is probably asking a bit much but it might even be nice to have different character sheet layouts for downtime/exploration/combat mode that can be toggled. Doing a single good character sheet design is already hard enough though so this is just me spitballing.

  • While I’m daydreaming, it would be amazing if we could be able to get homebrew character sheet layout support. Either through custom HTML/CSS/etc… or by having a good API on top of which to build a custom character sheet. The community would probably come up with some very interesting alternative layouts & designs if that were possible which could in turn then also inspire/improve the default layout.

1 Like

Thanks for this feedback! :slight_smile: