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Building Characters
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Building Characters


Building Characters is an essential system-neutral toolkit for all tabletop roleplayers, gamemasters, and game designers. Explore what goes into crafting memorable and enjoyable tabletop roleplaying character backgrounds! This book looks at how characters influence and are influenced by the worldbuilding, adventures, and systems of a tabletop roleplaying game. 

What you need to know:

  • A new edition of Building Characters (the Director's Cut) is in development.
  • Digital files will be pushed as an update to the current version, rather than releasing it as a separate product.
  • The price for the digital version will increase from $5 to $7.50 upon release, so buying now saves you money and gets you both editions.
  • A hardcover print-on-demand version is coming. 
  • Those who purchase the digital version now will be sent a discount code when the print-on-demand version is available, making the overall price the same as the inevitable print+PDF option.

Dancing Lights Press (DXP) is a tabletop roleplaying company with a lo-fi approach. Utility of content takes precedence over ostentatious production value. Graphic elements should enhance the message of the text, not act as page filler and eye candy. Physical books need to be compact, portable, and sturdy. This minimalist aesthetic results in powerful toolkits that are both useful and affordable. After all, tabletop roleplaying isn’t the book. It’s the creativity and collaboration that takes place around the tabletop. Our mission is to give you as much as you need, then get out of your way.

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February 21st, 2021
This version is an improvement over the first edition, and it still has a way to go to be the indispensable resource that I would expect from a publisher. While the formatting is better in this version, such as including bullets in place of the first [...]
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Product Information
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Publisher Stock #
File Size:
1.9 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
February 23, 2020
This title was added to our catalog on February 25, 2020.